Vote for the 2012 Bahrain Grand Prix driver of the weekend

2012 Bahrain Grand Prix

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

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

Driver notes

Sebastian Vettel – Red Bull made some small changes at the back of the RB8, including sealing a gap to redirect the exhaust flow, and suddenly it all clicked again for Vettel. After snatching pole position by a slender margin he used it as a platform for a 2011-style victory. He built up a big lead at the start which proved vital as Raikkonen came on strong later in the race.
Mark Webber – Fourth for the fourth race in a row – and out-qualified by Vettel for the first time this year. He got away well at the start despite lacking KERS, but was unable to keep the charging Lotuses behind him.

Jenson Button – Didn’t look happy with the balance of his car all weekend. Qualified his usual two-tenths-or-so off Hamilton but lost ground at the start. He was then passed by Raikkonen before making an early pit stop as his tyres started to go off sooner than expected. Was in with a shout of sixth when a host of problems ended his race: “In the last few laps, the car sounded really noisy. I think the initial problem was an exhaust failure, then my puncture, and then a differential failure; so I had to retire.”
Lewis Hamilton – Qualified in the top two again and held the place at the start. But his lap times tailed off quickly and he was passed by Grosjean. Slow pit stops cost him over 13s in pure time, plus more being caught behind traffic. Spent the final stint trying to pass Alonso, but couldn’t repeat his successful move from earlier in the race.

Fernando Alonso – Last week he scraped into Q3 at the expense of Vettel, this time it was Raikkonen. Made a great start, threading his way through to gain four places and hold fifth. Was passed by Hamilton after his second pit stop but Ferrari’s reliably quick service got him back ahead again. Had the finishing line been further down the straight he might have taken sixth off di Resta.
Felipe Massa – Finished seven seconds behind Alonso in what was clearly his best performance of the year so far. Started 14th but was up to eighth by the end of lap one. Fell behind Rosberg at the first round of pit stops and finished the race ninth.

Michael Schumacher – His unlucky start to the year continued in qualifying, when a DRS problem consigned him to elimination in Q1. That plus a gearbox change left him 22nd on the grid. He gained four places on lap one, then picked off the Toro Rossos and Petrov. Clean air in his second and third stints allowed him to make more progress, and he inherited a point when Button retired, holding Perez behind him.
Nico Rosberg – Was in the hunt for pole position until he made a mistake at the final corner and slipped to fifth. A poor start left him ninth and he lost time in the second stint stuck behind Alonso. When he jumped the Ferrari at the second stint he defended his position very firmly, provoking public criticism from Alonso after the race. But the stewards found nothing untoward in his driving in this incident and a similar one with Hamilton where the McLaren driver got ahead. After the McLarens took themselves out of the picture, he passed di Resta for fifth.

Romain Grosjean, Lotus, Bahrain, 2012Kimi Raikkonen – Missing Q3 might have done him more good than harm as it meant his was equipped with more new tyres for the race. Lost crucial time after he was mugged by Massa in the opening laps before he re-passed the Ferrari. Fresh tyres in the first two stints helped him overhaul his team mate. He then had a crack at Vettel for the lead, but admitted afterwards. “I chose the wrong side.” Dropped back from Vettel in the final stint and finished second.
Romain Grosjean – Made a great start from seventh on the grid, moving up to fourth before passing Webber and Hamilton to run second. Lacking the benefit of fresh tyres he dropped behind Raikkonen at the end of their second stint, complaining that the team had left him out too long on his worn tyres. Closer to his team mate’s pace in later stints, he ended the race less than seven seconds behind for his first F1 podium.

Paul di Resta – Reached Q3 despite the team suffering the disadvantage of missing second practice due to safety fears following a petrol bomb attack earlier in the week. He was the only driver to make a two-stop strategy work in the race, offering little resistance to those much faster than him, choosing his battles with care. Kept a little KERS in hand to defend from Alonso at the exit of the final corner, which was enough to grab sixth place by a quarter of a second.
Nico Hulkenberg – Dropped back with a clutch problem at the start. Ran a three-stop strategy and had to make way for his team mate at one point. Passed the tyre-hobbled Kobayashi late in the race to take 12th.

Kamui Kobayashi – Was the only driver to start the race on medium tyres but had wheelspin and lost a place. Tried to run a two-stop strategy but his tyres went off late in the race.
Sergio Perez – Sauber split their strategies, Perez running a three-stopper after starting eighth. He was passed by di Resta early on and slipped out of the top ten. Poor straight-line speed left him powerless to pass Schumacher at the end of the race, leaving both Saubers out of the points.

Daniel Ricciardo – An exceptional qualifying performance put him sixth on the grid. Unfortunately his start was a disaster, and he came around at the end of lap one behind his team mate who’d started 17th. Never showed anything like his qualifying pace in the race: “I need to be hard on myself now and find out what I did wrong to make sure I don?t do it again,” he said. “It was a race to forget.”
Jean-Eric Vergne – Continued to be slower on Saturday – but quicker on Sunday – than his team mate. “We must find a solution to this, because if we can start further forward with the pace we have, then we should see a more positive result on Sunday,” he said.

Pastor Maldonado – Started 21st after a gearbox change but got up to 11th after his first pit stop. Had just switched to medium tyres at his second pit stop when a left-rear blow out sent him into a spin and out of the race. The team are investigating the cause.
Bruno Senna – Made a good start from 15th but slipped back through the pit stops before stopping three laps from home: “Towards the end I started feeling a lot of vibration in the brake pedal. The engineers were looking at it, so I kept pushing as you never know what will happen, but the vibration got worse and the decision was made to pit to avoid risking an accident.”

Heikki Kovalainen, Caterham, Bahrain, 2012Heikki Kovalainen – Qualified 16th, beating Vergne on merit and taking advantage of Schumacher’s problems. But he was hit from behind on the opening lap and sustained a puncture. He recovered to finish 17th.
Vitaly Petrov – Lost time with a damaged floor in FP3, then didn’t like the balance of his car on softs in qualifying. But showed encouraging pace for the team during the race, finishing 14s behind Ricciardo’s Toro Rosso.

Pedro de la Rosa – Started in front of Glock but was never going to be able to keep the car there. “We have to gain some speed per lap, more than anything because we want to be fighting our rivals on a consistent basis,” he said.
Narain Karthikeyan – Ran a four-stop strategy – the only driver to do so intentionally – yet finished just half a second behind his team mate. “My race performance was extremely good, I?d say it was my best Grand Prix so far this season,” he commented.

Timo Glock – Made a mistake on his qualifying lap, leaving him on the back row of the grid. Struggled for pace in the race and was unhappy with the balance of his car, saying: “I had no balance in the car, no speed and no chance to push after the second or third lap. The rear tyres dropped off massively and every time I did try to push, the rears locked under braking and I had no braking stability.”
Charles Pic – Started in front of Glock and stayed there in the race, lapping more quickly than his experienced team mate. Retired with a problem with his engine’s air valve system on lap 24.

Qualifying and race results summary

Started Gap to team mate Laps leading team mate Pitted Finished Gap to team mate
Sebastian Vettel 1st -0.215s 57/57 3 1st -38.788s
Mark Webber 3rd +0.215s 0/57 3 4th +38.788s
Jenson Button 4th +0.191s 42/55 4 18th Not on same lap
Lewis Hamilton 2nd -0.191s 13/55 3 8th Not on same lap
Fernando Alonso 9th -0.509s 56/57 3 7th -7.196s
Felipe Massa 14th +0.509s 1/57 3 9th +7.196s
Michael Schumacher 22nd +0.277s 3/57 3 10th +16.03s
Nico Rosberg 5th -0.277s 54/57 3 5th -16.03s
Kimi Raikkonen 11th +0.543s 32/57 3 2nd -6.861s
Romain Grosjean 7th -0.543s 25/57 3 3rd +6.861s
Paul di Resta 10th -0.297s 55/57 2 6th -18.996s
Nico Hulkenberg 13th +0.297s 2/57 3 12th +18.996s
Kamui Kobayashi 12th +0.146s 23/57 3 13th +17.632s
Sergio Perez 8th -0.146s 34/57 3 11th -17.632s
Daniel Ricciardo 6th -1.026s 4/56 3 15th Not on same lap
Jean-Eric Vergne 17th +1.026s 52/56 3 14th Not on same lap
Pastor Maldonado 21st +0.173s 15/25 2
Bruno Senna 15th -0.173s 10/25 3 22nd
Heikki Kovalainen 16th -0.971s 0/56 4 17th +11.187s
Vitaly Petrov 18th +0.971s 56/56 3 16th -11.187s
Pedro de la Rosa 20th -0.431s 47/55 3 20th -0.596s
Narain Karthikeyan 24th +0.431s 8/55 4 21st +0.596s
Timo Glock 23rd +0.222s 0/24 3 19th
Charles Pic 19th -0.222s 24/24 1

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 Bahrain Grand Prix weekend?

  • Sebastian Vettel (19%)
  • Mark Webber (0%)
  • Lewis Hamilton (1%)
  • Jenson Button (0%)
  • Fernando Alonso (1%)
  • Felipe Massa (1%)
  • Michael Schumacher (1%)
  • Nico Rosberg (0%)
  • Kimi Raikkonen (56%)
  • Romain Grosjean (8%)
  • Paul di Resta (11%)
  • Nico Hulkenberg (0%)
  • Kamui Kobayashi (0%)
  • Sergio Perez (0%)
  • Daniel Ricciardo (0%)
  • Jean-Eric Vergne (0%)
  • Pastor Maldonado (0%)
  • Bruno Senna (0%)
  • Heikki Kovalainen (0%)
  • Vitaly Petrov (0%)
  • Narain Karthikeyan (0%)
  • Pedro de la Rosa (0%)
  • Timo Glock (0%)
  • Charles Pic (2%)

Total Voters: 641

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2012 Bahrain Grand Prix


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157 comments on Vote for the 2012 Bahrain Grand Prix driver of the weekend

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  1. Todfod (@todfod) said on 23rd April 2012, 13:39

    I’m just happy to be able to vote for Kimi Raikkonnen again. He thoroughly deserved driver of the weekend this race. Seb Vettel didn’t put a foot wrong either, but Kimi’s performance on Sunday was just top notch.

    • BBT (@bbt) said on 23rd April 2012, 19:16

      What about Kimi’s qualifying? That wasn’t too good was it?

      • Trenthamfolk (@trenthamfolk) said on 23rd April 2012, 19:53

        I suppose that Seb’s performance doesn’t stand out – more par-the-course leading from the front – whereas Kimi is managing to do what Schumacher struggles to do… He’s stepped into a team and already is producing a package that can challenge the leading pack, despite qualifying. Kimi for me. Then Grosjean… Then Seb.

      • bananarama (@bananarama) said on 23rd April 2012, 22:15

        I’m still thinking about it but I hope I can make myself vote for Kimi (so happy to see him back at the front).
        About his qallifying: sure Kimi should have put the car in Q3. His first attempt was good, I think he was 5th or so, then came the second round of attempts that he didn’t participate in with new tyres, which was said in german tv was his own decision in order to save tyres for the race (then again, what do they know, they can’t even tell Maldonado from Senna). One could arge thats his fault, one could argue that was smart.

        • Macca (@macca) said on 23rd April 2012, 23:26

          I voted for Kimi because he missed out on Q3 because of the teams call not his. He could have easily gone out for another lap and put in a time that was easily good enough for Q3 but the team chose to hold him in the garage and save tyres.

      • Todfod (@todfod) said on 24th April 2012, 5:46

        @bbt . Agree he didn’t make it to Q3, but it was a decision to save an extra set of tyres for Sunday. I’m fairly certain he could have made the Q3 cut if he had gotten another run in.

        I think his performance on Sunday impressed me much more than Vettel’s, as he had to work through the entire field and put his car in contention to win. It’s been a while since a car didn’t make it to Q3 and still had a chance to win.

      • According to the Danish commentry, it was Kimi’s call to keep a set of tires after falling so far back at the end of the last race. I voted Kimi, but its close between him and Vettel.

    • suka (@suka) said on 24th April 2012, 7:37

      Kimi has been impressing me all season long with his patience and no emotional outbreaks when doesn’t qualify among the top 4 or somebody passes him on the track, etc…
      His driving, it’s like he never left but it will get even better.
      Voted for Kimi Raikkonen. I hope Lotus continues to develop and he fights for WDC title.

    • GEOFFREY (@) said on 24th April 2012, 11:26

      Voted Grosjean, first ‘rookie’ to finish on the podium for a while, he qualified in the top 10 shootout again, had a stunning start then overtook Hamilton thanks to the DRS sure, but made no mistakes and managed his tyres well. Rookies are flying this year, even Pic out-qualified Glock for the first time

  2. bearforce1 (@bearforce1) said on 23rd April 2012, 13:41

    This was really too hard to choose between Seb and Kimmi. I mean Kimmi was so so good in a super fast car that it made vettel look good defending.

    Man that Lotus was fast. Where did the speed come from?

    As I said in another section.

    Where will Kimmi be driving next year? Every team will want him. Some number one driver is in for a big shock.

    • vjanik said on 23rd April 2012, 14:13

      Will depend on Kubica.

      I think we will see Kubica run a few practice sessions this year, which will determine who will drive for Lotus next season.

    • vjanik said on 23rd April 2012, 14:16

      Wouldn’t it be ironic if Kimi replaced Massa at Ferrari next season?

      • PhilEReid (@philereid) said on 23rd April 2012, 14:42

        I could see it happening possibly, but then they have Perez looking like a likely candidate for the position as well. (Granted, it would be hilarious to see him there, and possibly show Alonso and thing or two. Would be nice to see Alonso with a strong team mate which he hasn’t really had since Hamilton). Perez can only really get faster and better, whereas it’s possible that overtime, Kimi may lose form again. I hope he wont, and I really doubt he will, but there’s always that niggle that may be against him rejoining Ferrari. And there is also the case of him probably not wanting to go back there after he was bought out.
        I’d love to see Kimi back at McLaren, or even replacing Webber at Red Bull. As much as I respect Webber, I would rather see Kimi there.

        • Kmasse said on 24th April 2012, 22:57

          Kimi will not return to Ferrari for 3 reasons: the way they treated him, Alonso refused to drive alongside Kimi in the past (why would he do so now), everyone can see that it’s downhill for Ferrari (they were a lot more organized in the past).

          I reckon Kimi will continue at Lotus (if things keep going this well) or switch for McLaren (they still have a great relationship)

      • erix said on 23rd April 2012, 16:12

        Ferrari choose FM over Kimi to assure Santander deal, it was the fact all over internet. FM was 8kg lighter than Kimi to explain Qualifying advantage, whilst Kimi needs motivation to do well. Ferrari very well knew that, and so did FA.

    • Shane (@shane-pinnell) said on 23rd April 2012, 18:06

      From what I discerned from Kimi’s interviews about getting back into F1 this year he may have a stake in Lotus. He said that he wanted a stake in Williams, but Frank wasn’t up for it. If he does have a stake in Lotus, I don’t see him leaving any time soon.

    • Aditya (@) said on 24th April 2012, 6:06

      He has a contract, but with a probable empty Mercedes race seat next season, things could get spiced up. Then there’s the factor of probable empty seats at Ferrari and Red Bull, although I believe the Austrian team will have it covered. Also, it must be taken into consideration, that Lewis does not yet have a contract for next year. It is difficult to say now, but I believe most speculations will be put at rest by the time the season ends. I think Raikkonen will stay at Lotus-Renault for another year.

    • Tete said on 24th April 2012, 10:45

      Who. Hamilton? You actually believe Ferrari is sabotaging massa? Give me a break. Just watch the standings, Alonso with the 6 or 7 fastest car is just 10 points behind vettel while massa is 46 . Give a break! Go watch your driver in the best car doing nothing

  3. AndrewTanner (@andrewtanner) said on 23rd April 2012, 13:46

    I voted Raikkonen but it was very tight between himself and Vettel. Vettel proved that as a driver he is in the right frame of mind for this season. Give the guy a car he can work with and he is a serious force to reckon with. A typical Vettel display which was even more impressive than usual with him pulling out such a significant gap at the start from Hamilton despite not enjoying the same performance advantage as last year.

    I voted for Raikkonen because I think he drove a brilliant race. He attacked as much as he could when it mattered but also realised when it was over, a stark contrast to his disaster in China. He seemed to deal with his competitors quickly and utilised the Lotus’ straight line speed strength to the absolute max.

    • AdrianMorse (@adrianmorse) said on 23rd April 2012, 17:15

      pulling out such a significant gap at the start from Hamilton despite not enjoying the same performance advantage as last year

      Vettel’s drive was impressive, no question (I voted for him), but I do not recally any race last year when McLaren was so far off the pace in the race.

      • AdrianMorse (@adrianmorse) said on 23rd April 2012, 17:15

        sorry for the typo

      • F1fanNL (@) said on 23rd April 2012, 20:59

        Turkey and Valencia. About the same difference as yesterday between Vettel and Hamilton.

        But it’s not just Vettel having the pace over the McLarens. He beat Webber by over 38 seconds as well. Without Hamilton’s pitstop woe’s Hamilton would have only been about 7 seconds behind Webber.

    • matt90 (@matt90) said on 23rd April 2012, 17:28

      Same dilemma, but I went for Vettel, based on it being driver of the weekend and Kimi letting himself down in quali (although as pointed out he might not have done as well with less tyres).

    • sid_prasher (@) said on 23rd April 2012, 19:40

      Tough choice between Kimi and Vettel – finally went for Kimi because I am super impressed by how quickly he has adapted to F1 again…

  4. Dan Thorn (@dan-thorn) said on 23rd April 2012, 13:52

    Vettel, flawless all weekend. Pole, win, fastest lap, only lost the lead in pit stops, mega stuff. Kimi drove a stormer in the race but qualified poorly, possibly giving him a small benefit with regards to tyres.

    Great races from Grosjean and Di Resta, Alonso drove his with usual brilliance and Massa will take great heart from his drive. Maldonado was doing great too before his puncture.

  5. Tango (@tango) said on 23rd April 2012, 13:52

    A hat trick. What else can I really vote ? The Renault were surprising, but week end wise, it was a Vettel race (unfortunately. He is so ennoying when he wins like that).

  6. Mallesh Magdum (@malleshmagdum) said on 23rd April 2012, 13:53

    The driver of the day gotta be Paul Di Resta. His defence against Rosberg is one of the best I have seen in the DRS era. He looked after his tyres very well and delivered a fabulous result for Force India :)

    • Girts (@girts) said on 23rd April 2012, 14:40

      @malleshmagdum Yeah, di Resta was really fantastic, a very mature race by him. Come to think about it, he beat both Ferraris and both McLarens, in a car that doesn’t seem to deserve that. If I had a second vote, I’d definitely give it to him.

    • BBT (@bbt) said on 23rd April 2012, 19:18

      Di Resta for me as well, professional mature drive and great qualifying as well.

      • Kimi4WC said on 24th April 2012, 2:27

        Who ever leaves McLaren or Mercedes first will be replaced by Di Resta :)

      • sorin (@) said on 24th April 2012, 2:55

        I can’t vote a for a “driver” who gambled on a risky tyre strategy and wins. Not because I don’t appraciate that types of drivers, but I don’t know how much was his ideea or his team advices. What was the procentage of decision from him? I will vote him if I know for sure that he said: “Ok, team, we will choose 2 stop strategy”. But what if it was: “-So, Paul our simulations/calculation indicate that the percenatge of wear is like 0.2-0.7% …and you have to do 2 stop strategy. – Okay, boss!”

        • Mallesh Magdum (@malleshmagdum) said on 24th April 2012, 14:37

          Leaving the strategy aside, I chose him for his defence against Rosberg with a double DRS. And how do u know that Kimi and Vettel didnt follow team strategy and chalked up their own? @sorin

          • sorin (@) said on 24th April 2012, 15:25

            okay, so what I meant to say was that: I can’t VOTE for someone, which very good decisions, are not 100% his. Maybe they are, maybe not. But, of course if you say he was defending very good against Rosberg, then i ”l vote for that. But, pesonally I didn’t see that, I was too focus on Raikkonen. :)

    • xjr15jaaag (@xjr15jaaag) said on 3rd May 2012, 8:00

      I thought that Vettel holding off hamilton at Spain last year was even better than Paul holding off Rosberg, but I see your point

  7. TommyB (@tommyb89) said on 23rd April 2012, 13:55

    Everyone will vote for Raikkonen but it should be Vettel. For some reason when Vettel wins from start to finish it’s not seen as a great drive but when others did it in the last few races (Button and Rosberg) they won driver of the weekend easily.

    While Raikkonen had a great race he should have won that race. He had the chance to win it and he didn’t take it.

    Vettel started from pole, set the fastest lap by quite some way and he also finished 40 seconds ahead of his team mate. He was also the only person who managed to successfully defend from the Lotus DRS slam dunk which they did on so many cars throughout the race.

    This was far from one of his 2011 victories, the Lotus was the best car out there and Vettel managed to beat them both.

    • TommyB (@tommyb89) said on 23rd April 2012, 14:01

      Also rubbishes talks that Vettel can’t win when under pressure, despite Monaco and Spain last year. He drove brilliantly despite the pressure from Raikkonen, tactically using his KERS and was completely fair when defending his line.

    • bearforce1 (@bearforce1) said on 23rd April 2012, 14:05

      @TommyB, brilliant way of looking at it. The Lotus cars ate every one during the race except SV.

      It was thrilling watching cause you could see how damn quick the lotus were compared to Vettel. The tension was epic.

    • Dan Thorn (@dan-thorn) said on 23rd April 2012, 14:11

      Excellent points. I hope people actually read comments like this before voting.

    • erix said on 23rd April 2012, 16:25

      Best car would have pole and fastest lap, RB have better down-force whilst LR have better straight line speed.

      • Kingshark (@kingshark) said on 23rd April 2012, 18:03

        Nothing against Vettel – But here are a couple of facts
        1) He’s never won when starting outside of the top 3.
        2) He’s also never won a race he did not lead by lap 6 – Apart from Abu Dhabi 2009 (Hamilton misfortune) and Spain 2011 (Alonso’s awful slow Ferrari).
        I’m not doubting Vettel can overtake. However, his passing ability is a one-hit wonder, he can make maybe one or two overtakes a race; but he can’t overtake his way to victory. I am still questioning his true racing ability until he does something like Japan 2005 – All great champions have at least one win like that.

        • Dan Thorn (@dan-thorn) said on 23rd April 2012, 18:36

          Why does he need to overtake like that? He’s had a few drives from near the back to solid top sixes/podiums, but when you can qualify at the front with the regularity Vettel does, you don’t have the opportunity to overtake. I don’t get how being able to qualify at the front detracts from his talents…

        • Kingshark

          I disagree with you. Vettel is very good at taking advantage of the material he`s got. If he`s got a car capable of winning the race he`ll be among the top 3 due to his ability to qualify. You can`t use his qualifying skills against him and claim he`s not a great driver. He`s won 22 races in F1 and is 24 years of age.

          He put in some great overtaking moves last season and has even put in one this year.

          During qualifying he reminds me of Senna, he`s oh so presise and capable of putting in the perfect lap more consistently than his competitors. His main competitor when it comes down to qualifying is probably Hamilton who`s also lightning quick but more prone to mistakes.

          In the race Vettel still has the ability to put in lightning quick laps when he needs to. The fact he`s very quick the first laps on cold tyres is indeed a trademark of a great F1-driver. The greatest drivers all had the ability to outpace their opponents just when they needed to.
          But Vettel has even more in his armour. He`s got a “Prost-like” ability to take care of his car and tyres during the race. Everybody`s talking about Buttons ability to take care of his tyres, in my opinion Vettel`s almost as good as Button. And he`s got more in terms of outright speed.
          What race-craft is concerned at this point in time I think his biggest competitors are Alonso, Raikkonen, Button and possibly Hamilton. I`m not convinced about Hamilton, I`ve seen him kill his tyres too many times and mess up his races. the schumi of old would have been right up with them, but I feel he`s too old now. I remember watching a race in 2004 thinking that Schumacher had lost some of his ability allready then. He wasn`t the same, not as aggressive and relentless as he used to be. That`s even more obvious now. I don`t rate Vettel as the best driver when it comes down to race craft, yet. He`s still prone to mistakes due to impatience. But he`s right up there with the more experienced drivers, and totally faultless many times.

          The combination of these factors, his enormous will to win, his ability to keep calm when the pressure is on and ability to learn and develop as a driver make Vettel a fearsome competitor. I think very few of the other drivers on the grid (if any) will be able to beat Vettel over a season in equal maschinery. The fact he`s a two-time wold champion at the age of 24 is no coincidence at all.

          As for this race, Raikkonen was magnifficent, as I knew he would be. I think Raikkonen is the most naturally talented driver on the grid. In that respect he beats both Vettel, Hamilton and Alonso. You can put Raikkonen in any type of motor vehicle and he`ll be competitive in a very short time. He came into F1 with 23 races to his credit and made an instant impact. But he lacks the ruthless streak that would have made him truly great. He`s not a “driven-man” in the same way as Vettel, Alonso and Hamilton. As long as Kimi`s having fun and can do what he wants to do it`s ok. He`s the same whether he`s winning or loosing. The others are not, I reckon they are a pain in the ass to everybody around them when they are not winning. Ì said before Kimi returned that the new “style” of F1 should suit Raikkonen perfectly, and so it seems. Nobody`s got more fastest laps to his credit on old rubber towards the end of races than Kimi Raikkonen. His smooth style preserves the tyres and keep them fresh longer than most drivers. In addition he`s really quick.

          I have to choose between Vettel and Raikkonen for this race. Raikkonen had a truly great race, but I have to give it to Vettel. What can you say, he was faultless in this race and did what he had to do. I hope Kimi takes the next race though, and if he doesn`t there`s always SPA..

          • Kmasse said on 24th April 2012, 23:17

            “He`s not a “driven-man”… He`s the same whether he`s winning or loosing.”

            In the Finnish culture men don’t show they’re emotions in front of public, that would be considered as a sign of weakness.

            Raikkonen only cares about winning. However, showing great emotions after winning would mean being cocky (instead of being modest, which is respected in the Finnish culture).

      • David-A (@david-a) said on 23rd April 2012, 18:33

        @erix – The best car would have passed both Mclarens and the other Red Bull so easily.

    • Guilherme (@guilherme) said on 23rd April 2012, 19:26

      @tommyb I’d also like to see what excuse people will find to explain how he pulls away at the start of the race. Last year a lot of people claimed it was because of the EBD, but now that is gone. His ability to drive fast in a heavy car is astonishing.

      • KeeleyObsessed (@keeleyobsessed) said on 23rd April 2012, 22:08

        @guilherme I’m not sure that ability is just lmited to Vettel… Remember how easily Button pulled away in Melbourne, or how easily Rosberg pulled away in China? I think it’s down to just having clear air in front of you, the other 23 cars slow each other down through the first few laps…

    • sorin (@) said on 23rd April 2012, 19:39

      Why I choose Raikkonen and not Vettel: it’s harder to overtake than to defend.

    • AndrewTanner (@andrewtanner) said on 23rd April 2012, 19:57

      @tommyb89 You’re dead right about people not voting for Vettel for that reason. I voted for him many times last year for that reason, it was impressive. However, I gave mine to Raikkonen on this occasion.

    • Aditya (@) said on 24th April 2012, 6:18

      Lotus isn’t the best car all-round, but still….. +1

  8. Mallesh Magdum (@malleshmagdum) said on 23rd April 2012, 13:59

    Karthikeyan was just 0.5s off his team-mate inspite of being on a four stopper :o

  9. adzz36 (@adzz36) said on 23rd April 2012, 13:59

    Vettel got on with the job and won the race.

    Kimi put in a great drive on Sunday and I like him a lot, but you can’t ignore his qualifying performance, and he also missed the opportunity to win the race.

    I voted for Di Resta. I’m not as big a fan of his as most people, particularly other UK fans, but he put in a great qualifying performance to get into the top ten, and a great, controlled drive to finish comfortably above the car’s limitations. I also like the way he picks his fights, although others may see it as chickening out and not showing fighting spirit, I see it as intelligent strategy to max out his eventual finishing position, which is what counts at the end of the day.

    Having said that, I still feel the race going ahead in Bahrain was an abomination.

    • Nigel said on 23rd April 2012, 14:09

      “I also like the way he picks his fights, although others may see it as chickening out and not showing fighting spirit, I see it as intelligent strategy to max out his eventual finishing position, which is what counts at the end of the day.”

      Agree 100%. The current Pirelli tyres make this style essential – unless you’re trying to destroy someone else’s race as well as your own.

      “Having said that, I still feel the race going ahead in Bahrain was an abomination.”

      Yep.

    • TommyB (@tommyb89) said on 23rd April 2012, 14:11

      he also missed the opportunity to win the race.

      For me that is why it should be Vettel and not Raikkonen. Much like why I voted for Alonso and not Perez in Malaysia. They had the best car and the chance to win the race but they didn’t take it.

      I agree though Di Resta was very very impressive.

      • sorin (@) said on 24th April 2012, 2:11

        Best car..? Grosjean had a constant gap between Vettel, almost all race. Raikkonen pushed a lot and he gained like 0.220s per lap(after second pit-stop with new stints Vettel-soft and Raikk-medium!!) before he used DRS. It’s not enough ONE chance, at this difference (0.220s) with medium to overtake someone with softs. Raikkonen didn’t try another approach of Vettel. I don’t no why, maybe to ensure his first podium(good for him).

        • David-A (@david-a) said on 24th April 2012, 2:54

          But Grosjean and his teammate flew past Webber as if he was standing still. Red Bull were faster than Lotus in qualifying, but Lotus were faster than RBR in the race.

          I voted for Vettel because of his good defense and excellent pole, but I wouldn’t begrudge Raikkonen winning DOTW since it is just 4 races into his return, a bit like people voting Perez over Alonso in Malaysia. I would be less happy if one of the established frontrunners from the last couple of years (e.g. Button) qualified 11th and lost a straight fight for the win, but was voted DOTW.

        • uan (@uan) said on 25th April 2012, 0:50

          what you’re forgetting is that Vettel was on *used* softs versus Kimi’s *new* medium. There’s a huge drop off in performance with the tires that already had 3 laps in them.

  10. d3v0 (@d3v0) said on 23rd April 2012, 14:03

    Looks the majority here approves of Kimi’s fighting style vs. Seb’s scamper-away style. Not a shock :)

    • phildick (@phildick) said on 23rd April 2012, 14:27

      I imagine that if Kimi was scampering away with Seb was chasing him and won the GP with SV breathing down his neck, most people would still vote for Kimi.
      BTW I voted Vettel, a hattrick plus a brilliant defending move on Kimi.

      • d3v0 (@d3v0) said on 23rd April 2012, 19:59

        @phildick A fair point, although I think the difference here is that the relative pace of the cars made Kimi look like a hero.

        • sorin (@) said on 24th April 2012, 2:25

          Since when the cars mades Raikkonen to look like a hero? I think, here, Raikkonen makes the cars to look like “heroes”. ;)

          • sorin (@) said on 24th April 2012, 2:38

            completion: Look at @TommyB: “he had the best car..bla bla, bla”. What best car? Grosjean had a constant gap between Vettel all race(he even lost 2-3s at the end, look at the charts) and Raikkonen gained 0.220s per lap to Vettel. Plus, Vettel had pole and the fastest lap. Who had the best car..?

          • David-A (@david-a) said on 24th April 2012, 5:45

            @sorin – As I said above, both Lotuses flew by Webber and everyone else, with Kimi almost DRSing Vettel. That suggests that while the Bull was quicker than Lotus over a single lap, the Lotuses were the faster car on raceday.

    • dennis (@dennis) said on 23rd April 2012, 14:50

      Interestingly, so far if you read the comments without looking at the scores, you get the feeling that Vettel monsters the poll. Because a lot people who actually analys both Kimi’s and Vettel’s weekend with at least some thought come to the conclusion, that Vettel had a better weekend.

      If you then look at the poll it’s quite a different story… Heart over reason?

      • d3v0 (@d3v0) said on 23rd April 2012, 19:56

        @dennis well, using that analysis everyone should pick their favorite driver by whoever is the most successful!

        Of course people pick the best driver of the weekend via heart. Reason is involved as well, because Kimi had a great weekend. So someone ignoring their heart and using reason would vote Seb Vettel for most of the races last year, but that wasnt the case either was it?

        • dennis (@dennis) said on 23rd April 2012, 21:01

          @d3v0
          First of all you’re not supposed to pick your favourite driver, but the one who did the best job all weekend and second of all you’re making conclusions up.

          Not voting for Vettel because he had a perfect race weekend and you feel that this is boring has nothing to do with point of the poll.

          • d3v0 (@d3v0) said on 23rd April 2012, 21:36

            @dennis

            Jesus Christ man, did you create the poll or something?

            Your logic is flawed in that using reason only for every choice would mean that the statistically best driver is the one who should win the poll, every time. Well that makes for a VERY boring (yes, boring) poll. And what good is a boring poll?

            You choose based on whose performance INSPIRED you to feel SOMETHING. Not just who snagged pole and the win. Did everyone pic Alonso for Malaysia because he won? No. it was a good split. They picked Checo also because even though he lost the race through a silly mistake, he INVIGORATED us as formula one fans.

            And that’s how many felt about Kimi this weekend. Sorry if that screws with your idea of how the poll should go.

          • dennis (@dennis) said on 24th April 2012, 8:37

            You’re yet again making your conclusions and random stuff up. It has nothing to do with success.
            And again, it’s not vote “the driver who inspired you most” it’s driver of the weekend. People voted for Perez because he did an uncanny job in a car that under normal circumstances shouldn’t be so far up front. However, the same goes for Alonso. The question is between who did you think did a better job.

    • Oh, right, you mean “scamper-away style” like the one Rosberg showcased in China? The one that won that weekend’s poll by a landslide? That style?

      • David-A (@david-a) said on 23rd April 2012, 19:29

        @aka_robyn – Off-topic, that’s a wonderful avatar ;)

      • d3v0 (@d3v0) said on 23rd April 2012, 19:53

        @aka_robyn Would you say that is Nico’s style? I wouldnt. Hes been fighting for 111 GP’s to get that win.

        But Seb last year did it something like 11 times. Got a bit dull.

        • Scampering away into the lead and staying there? Yeah, I’d say it was Nico’s style in China! And people seemed to like it just fine, judging from the voting in that weekend’s poll.

          But if Nico did it something like 11 times, then people would stop liking it so much — I guess that’s the deal?

        • dennis (@dennis) said on 23rd April 2012, 21:04

          Well, what do we know if it’s his style or not? He only won one race so far… O_o

          If that was Nicos 100th win (90 of which he won by coasting away), you would not have voted for him? Well… Talk about strange picks.

          • d3v0 (@d3v0) said on 23rd April 2012, 21:39

            Yeah, everyone should just vote for who got pole and the win, every time. Regardless of how.

            I guess youd have voted MSC driver of the weekend from 2000-2004?

          • David-A (@david-a) said on 24th April 2012, 5:55

            @dennis , @d3v0 , Although I wouldn’t every time vote for the guy who got pole and the win, I believe that especially last year Vettel definitely should have won a few more DOTWs.

            This weekend, I did vote Vettel because he was flawless in qualifying and the race. However it is perfectly understandable that Kimi could be seen as DOTW despite qualifying 11th because it was an unexpectedly great raceday performance from someone only 4 races into his return. It’s just like Perez being given DOTW for Malaysia despite making a mistake while trying to catch Alonso- it was unexpected since it was a 22 year old achieving his career best result.

          • dennis (@dennis) said on 24th April 2012, 8:45

            @david-a
            At no point did I ever say I always vote for the driver who took pole and win, sorry, but please don’t mix my opinion with stuff other people made up.
            In this case I think Vettel had a better weekend, mainly due to the qualifying.

            My point was simply, that a lot of people who wrote their opinion as a comment said they voted for Vettel, after comparing both drivers. The poll however shows that apparently those who did not want to take the time to write a comment voted for Kimi…

          • David-A (@david-a) said on 24th April 2012, 8:49

            @dennis – I know you don’t always vote for the pole/winner. I was referring to the user “d3v0″ who thought that people would do so.

  11. dragon said on 23rd April 2012, 14:09

    The Lotus was the fastest in race trim – but some brilliant defensive driving by SV ensured the victory was his. Driver of the weekend by a mile.

  12. infernojim (@infernojim) said on 23rd April 2012, 14:19

    In my mind, there’s only 5 drivers that deserve votes this weekend, and then it’s a matter of opinion as to which you go for.

    The 5 are Kimi, Grosjean, Vettel, Di Resta and Massa. I’ve voted for Kimi out of that lot.

    • Dan Thorn (@dan-thorn) said on 23rd April 2012, 14:21

      Why Massa over Alonso? He drove a good race, yes, but was still bested by his team mate in virtually every area…

      • infernojim (@infernojim) said on 24th April 2012, 9:53

        I thought someone might say that, and it’s a fair point. I just think that Massa deserves mention for finally coming to the races and delivering a solid race. It was by no means outstanding, but by recent standards a marked improvement.

        Alonso did best him, but by his standards it was an average race, no more. You set a high bar like Alonso does, and you have to do more to impress! :-)

  13. Slr (@slr) said on 23rd April 2012, 14:19

    Vettel proved again why he is a double world champion, and that why I voted for him. He got pole and his win was anything but easy with Raikkonen on his tail.

    I’d give special mention to Grosjean also. He made it into Q3 and drove a solid race, if he keeps this up we have a star on our hands.

  14. electrolite (@electrolite) said on 23rd April 2012, 14:25

    It’s got to be Vettel for me. With enough teams in the hunt for pole, Saturday was down to the driver. On Sunday he kept everything totally under control whilst Raikkonen put him under pressure, and made precisely the right defending move at the crucial point he needed to.

    Raikkonen would be a close second, obviously – but I do think the Lotus really is that good.

  15. Finally I can vote Vettel. Great weekend. Pole, win and fastest lap. He managed to win despite the fact that the RB8 was a little bit slower than the Lotus.

    Still, I would have loved to vote Grosjean. I think he could have done a little bit better in the second half of the race. But the first half was very exciting. It was so good to see him taking second place.

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