Start, Sepang, 2012

Vote for your Malaysian Grand Prix driver of the weekend

2012 Malaysian Grand PrixPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Start, Sepang, 2012Which F1 driver had the best race weekend in Malaysia?

Compare all the drivers’ performances below and vote for who you think was the best driver of the Malaysian Grand Prix weekend.

Driver notes

Sebastian Vettel – Chasing down Hamilton for a podium when he clipped Karthikeyan, puncturing his tyre and damaging his brake. The stewards blamed the HRT driver but Vettel should have exercised more caution.
Mark Webber – Out-qualified Vettel again but struggled at the race restart. Was passed by Alonso and Vettel – but re-passed his team mate. Eventually elevated to fourth by Vettel’s demise.

Jenson Button – Accepted the blame for hitting Karthikeyan after getting ahead of Hamilton, following his team mate’s slow pit stop. An extra stop for intermediates pushed his tally up to five, but his pace was comparable to Hamilton’s.
Lewis Hamilton – Pole-to-third for the second race in a row. Drove superbly on intermediates when the track was very wet, but couldn’t match Alonso and Perez’s pace in the second half of the race. Poor pit stops were only part of the problem.

Fernando Alonso – Dragged the F2012 into Q3. Produced one of his best performances when the track was at its wettest and took the lead. Kept everything under control in the second half of the race when Perez quicker to score an improbable and brilliant win – despite also losing his telemtry.
Felipe Massa – Seemed happier with his new chassis in qualifying. But the race was a disaster. After the restart on lap 14 he lost over a minute and a half to Alonso by the end of the race: a massive 2.18s per lap. As Alonso crossed the line to win Massa’s car was visible in the foreground, five seconds away from being lapped.

Michael Schumacher – Qualified third and didn’t make his customary brilliant getaway. Was tagged by Romain Grosjean at turn four, dropping him to 16th place. Coped better with the W03’s tyre degradation than his team mate, but even so was fortunate to inherit the final point for tenth when Maldonado retired.
Nico Rosberg – Seems to have lost his qualifying advantage from last year, and an extra pit stop for intermediates dropped him well out of the top ten.

Kimi Raikkonen – Quick enough for fourth in qualifying, a gearbox change penalty left him tenth on the grid. Struggled on unfamiliar intermediates but set the fastest race lap on his way to fifth.
Romain Grosjean – Made a much better start than in Melbourne – until he reached turn four. Tangled with Schumacher and fell to 21st. Gambled on staying out on intermediates but aquaplaned off when the rain got heavy on lap four.

Paul di Resta – Blamed Maldonado for a spin which cost him three places just before the safety car came out. Moved forward at the restart, passing Massa on his way to seventh.
Nico Hulkenberg – Not as quick as his team mate on intermediates in the middle part of the race, he was passed by Vergne and Senna. Nonetheless brought the car home in the points in ninth, 3s behind Di Resta.

Fernando Alonso, Sergio Perez, Sepang, 2012Kamui Kobayashi – Six-tenths slower than Perez in qualifying, he retired with ten laps to go with braking problems.
Sergio Perez – A breakthrough performance. Took the Sauber, which hadn’t looked great in practice, into Q3. Gambled on an early switch to wets which put him in contention for the lead with some great laps when the circuit was at its wettest. Reeled in Alonso in the second half of the race but a mis-timed pit stop and a mistake at turn 13 ultimately blunted his charge.

Daniel Ricciardo – Lost out in the opening laps but was one of the first to switch to slick tyres which paid off handsomely. He was the quickest driver by three seconds on lap 39, which helped him finish ahead of Jenson Button and Nico Rosberg.
Jean-Eric Vergne – Knocked out in Q1 after flat-spotting a tyre on his last lap. Bravely stayed out on intermediate tyres until the race was red-flagged, which took him up from 18th to seventh. Passed Massa on his way to claiming his first points for eighth.

Pastor Maldonado – Was up to fifth by lap five but missed his pit box when he came in on lap 14, dropping him to 20th. Much quicker than Senna in the first laps after they changed to slicks, he was running tenth when his engine failed two laps from home.
Bruno Senna – Lost his front wing on the first lap so he switched to wets early. Despite that he came in again for more wets six laps later. Having fallen to last, he had a strong second half of the race, passing Massa and Di Resta to finish sixth and score Williams’ first points of 2012.

Heikki Kovalainen – Started last following his penalty from Australia. Damaged his nose after being passed by his team mate and finished 18th behind Glock.
Vitaly Petrov – Kept Massa behind for 15 laps and took 16th, showing good pace compared to Kovalainen.

Pedro de la Rosa – Started from the pits and was given a drive-through penalty when his team failed to get off the grid in time for the restart. Caught Karthikeyan but lost more time pitting two laps later than him for slicks.
Narain Karthikeyan – Used wets for the first stint, like his team mate, and crossed the line in ninth place on lap 13. Was hit by Button and later made contact with Vettel – the latter while being lapped. Handed a questionable 20-second penalty for the Vettel incident which dropped him behind de la Rosa.

Timo Glock – Was chased by Kovalainen in the closing stages but held on to take 17th.
Charles Pic – Kept Kovalainen behind in the middle of the race after the Caterham driver’s extra pit stop, enabling his team mate to finish the race ahead of his rival.

Review the race data

Vote for your driver of the weekend

Which driver do you think did the best job this weekend?

Cast your vote below and explain your choice in the comments.

Who was the best driver of the Malaysian Grand Prix weekend?

  • Sebastian Vettel (0%)
  • Mark Webber (0%)
  • Lewis Hamilton (1%)
  • Jenson Button (0%)
  • Fernando Alonso (28%)
  • Felipe Massa (0%)
  • Michael Schumacher (1%)
  • Nico Rosberg (0%)
  • Kimi Raikkonen (2%)
  • Romain Grosjean (0%)
  • Paul di Resta (0%)
  • Nico Hulkenberg (0%)
  • Kamui Kobayashi (0%)
  • Sergio Perez (61%)
  • Daniel Ricciardo (0%)
  • Jean-Eric Vergne (1%)
  • Pastor Maldonado (0%)
  • Bruno Senna (4%)
  • Heikki Kovalainen (0%)
  • Vitaly Petrov (1%)
  • Narain Karthikeyan (0%)
  • Pedro de la Rosa (0%)
  • Timo Glock (0%)
  • Charles Pic (0%)

Total Voters: 874

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2012 Malaysian Grand Prix

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Image ?? Pirelli/LAT

149 comments on “Vote for your Malaysian Grand Prix driver of the weekend”

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  1. I voted for Alonso. I believe Perez rang the last drop of pace out of his sauber, but in doing so he made a few mistakes.
    Alonso however never put a foot wrong and I don’t believe his car was any better than the sauber on the day.

    This puts Ferrari in a good position, if they can sort out there problems by the time they reach Europe Alonso might get a car under him that can compete in normal track conditions and he won’t be too far off in the points race..

    I get the feeling Mercedes could rectify their race pace issues and get in the mix… can’t wait for China..

    And BBC coverage is back for free :)

  2. In my opinion it’s a 3-way race. Alonso, Perez and Senna. Alonso’s superb drive in a “not so fast” car, although he had a bit of luck or should I say, McLaren’s bad luck opened a room for him and he just took what was offered. Pretty much the same goes for Perez, but him catching up with Alonso reminded me of Fisichella in Spa ’09 and again Ferrari got the upper hand. And Bruno, in second part of the race, reminded a bit of Ayrton with his brilliant passes in wet, after it dried up his progress trough the field stopped. In the end, pretty impressive drive from an underrated driver.

    In the end I voted for Perez.

  3. As impressive Sergio was I believe that Alonso is the driver of the weekend. Alonso was absolutely flawless during the race while I did see multiple mistakes from Sergio.

  4. Sergio showed an exceptional skill & abilities of driving in wet conditions he did a fantastic job but Alonso for me was not simply the driver of the weekend if he continues driving like that maybe he’ll be the driver of the year (regardless who will be the world champion)
    it’s simply very rare to see a driver wins with such an inferior car, the examples of such demonstration of driving are very rare :
    Gilles Villeneuve Jarama 81
    Ayrton Senna Monaco 84
    Michael Schumacher spa 92
    Ayrton Senna Donington 93
    Michael Schumacher Barcelona 96
    the triumph of Alonso at Sepang 2012 is comparable to those victories & Worthy to enter the history of motorsport

    1. Fernando Cruz
      30th March 2012, 19:40

      Ayrton Senna did not win Monaco GP in 84, Jacky Ickx didn’t allow him to do that; Senna’s epic win was in Portugal GP in 85…

  5. Perez. Never have I been so certain of a driver of the weekend.

  6. Perez, Alonso, Senna and Vergne all had great races considering either their relative inexperience or poor car.

  7. Everyone knows that I can’t stand Alonso, not even to look at his face on the tv screen. But on sunday he made clear that he is in a different league. Driving a golf cart under the rain he was just perfect: clean driving, no mistakes, stayed out of trouble, good timing to go to pits and kept it easy when it was obvious that Perez was MUCH faster. Absolute spotless race.
    I hate to say this, but my vote goes to Alonso.
    Perez did a great race but he had a very good car in his hands.

  8. I know I should vote for Fernando, he was supreme all weekend, dragging that Ferrari to places it can’t go, he’s definitely one of the fastest drivers we’ll see for a long time. It was also great to see Bruno absolutely fly in the wet.

    But, I had to give it to Checo, he was just amazing and gave the race it’s epic plot, a couple of mistakes, but he’s still young and in a Sauber he was great.

  9. Alonso was the best for a simple reason: he did a perfect race, with no mistakes at all.
    Perez race was great, but non perfect. He will be a great driver one day, that’s for sure… but THE POINT IS:
    if a young Alonso was driving Perez’s Sauber and if Michael Schumacher was sitting in Alonso’s Ferrari… do you think that Fernando would have made such a silly mistake and renounced so easily to a maiden win?

    1. good question…

      i think Alonso could have won in your hypothetical situation.

  10. Bruno Senna did an incredible races in my opinion, clawing back from 23th to 6th is really good. He proves he is great on wet, just as his win in Silverstone 2008 GP2 under the wet. Made several great overtakes as well, especially the one on Schumi. If he can iron out his mistakes early in the race, I bet we will see more good results from him.
    If we just count the race itself, I will go for Senna. But if we count the performance on the whole weekend, including Qualifying, I will go for 1. Perez and 2. Alonso

  11. I wanted to vote for Perez, but I pushed the kers and voted Alonso.

  12. Ferrari are in trouble. It is only going to get much worse. The air of despair and heads rolling are just around the corner. Alonso got lucky in a race that was an equalizer. He didn’t do anything but catch the lucky dice. Next dry race will show the desperation of this team. Ferrari has had their moment in the sun, actually the rain and unless they build an MP427 they will flounder.

  13. I think alonso was the best driver of the day, the ferrari is much slower than the sauber. however we expect to see him have great results, so id give driver of the day to perez

  14. 1. Perez
    2. Alonso
    3. Bruno

  15. Mine goes to Perez. Yes Alonso drive was perfect but everybody knows that he is one of the best drivers ever, so it wasnt unexpected. But Perez. He is young, unexperienced and paied driver (the last doesnt really have an inpact on driving abilities but in psychology it is a minus) but drove near perfect race. Kobayashi wasnt able to match Perez pace who after lap 35 had personal best after personal best almst till the end.

  16. Always going to be Perez, but a very honourable mention to Alonso and Senna for great drives.

  17. Try to explain this to someone who doesn’t follow F1:

    Driver A had a great pace but driver B won the race even though his car was clearly slower and had serious technical trouble. Also, driver B managed to overtake driver A on track early on the race for the lead while driver A got stuck behind driver B near the end of the race but couldn’t overtake him for the win. Driver A went off the track twice, he was lucky enough to get back on it without losing positions but the second time probably cost him the win; meanwhile driver B made no mistakes even when he was collecting fastest lap after fastest lap in extremely slippery conditions. Obviously, I voted driver A for best”
    Your partner would say, you crazy or what? Which would prove she doesn’t know a thing about F1

  18. Sergio was fantastic and an obvious choice, Fernando great, as usual. But I want to give Bruno my vote, because he showed something I wouldn’t have expected from him – a brilliant race! Perez had shown talent and promise, Bruno only now really showed his potential.

  19. We should be able to pick 3 drivers to get a more accurate reading. everybody is having a hard time picking just one.


  20. Sergio Perez of course, great surprise, totally unexpected…

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