Vote for your Spanish GP Driver of the Weekend

2012 Spanish Grand Prix

Which F1 driver had the best race weekend in Spain?

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

Driver notes

Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Barcelona, 2012Sebastian Vettel – Minimised his running in qualifying to save tyres for the race. But a drive-through penalty for failing to slow sufficiently for yellow flags dropped him back into the pack. Passed Rosberg and the McLarens in his final stint to claim sixth, but it looked like fifth was the best he had on offer.
Mark Webber – His single run in Q2 was not good enough for him to reach Q3, so the pole sitter of the last two Spanish Grands Prix started 11th. Lost a place at the start, then pitted early in an attempt to make up ground. Like his team mate, his progress was slowed by front wing damage, necessitating a replacement. Couldn’t get past Hulkenberg for the final point at the end.

Jenson Button – Didn’t look comfortable in the McLaren at any point during the weekend. Missed Q3 and had a quiet race, finishing behind his team mate who had started last.
Lewis Hamilton – Faced with the sort of frustration that led to some of his worst performances last year, Hamilton responded commendably well. Relegated from first on the grid to last through no fault of his own, he took places when they were on offer and stayed his hand at other times, preserving his tyres. Was the only driver to complete the lap with two stops and even another McLaren pit stop blunder didn’t put him off his stride.

Fernando Alonso – The Ferrari looked a much more competitive proposition in Spain – at least, in Alonso’s hands. Out-qualified the Lotuses and snatched the lead at the start. But slipped behind Maldonado in the pit stops and, despite getting close, couldn’t quite take it back. Shares the lead of the championship with Vettel.
Felipe Massa – Over half a second off his team mate in qualifying, for which he blamed traffic, Massa started 14 places behind the other Ferrari. Disputed his penalty for speeding under yellow flags which dropped him behind Paul di Resta. He finished there, lapped by Alonso.

Michael Schumacher – Scraped into Q3 and moved up two places at the start to hold sixth, pressuring Romain Grosjean. But after Grosjean passed Senna and began to pull away, Schumacher’s eagerness to pass got the better of him and he ran into the back of the Williams. The stewards docked him five places on the grid for the next race.
Nico Rosberg – Couldn’t make the tyres last in his final stint and was passed by Kobayashi and Vettel. Had the race been 67 laps long instead of 66 he would have lost out to Hamilton too.

Kimi Raikkonen, Lotus, Barcelona, 2012Kimi Raikkonen – Out-qualified by Grosjean but moved ahead immediately at the start. Said after the race the car had the potential to win but they didn’t get the strategy right. Spent the final stint reeling in Alonso for second place, finishing 0.6 seconds behind.
Romain Grosjean – Not for the first time this year he didn’t make best use of a good grid position. Quickly passed Senna and Rosberg after his first pit stop to take up fourth. Like Raikkonen, made a late final pit stop and was flying at the end, setting fastest lap.

Paul di Resta – There wasn’t much to choose between the Force Indias in qualifying. In the race the team felt they’d underestimated how well the tyres would last and Di Resta fell from 12th to 14th.
Nico Hulkenberg – Like his team mate in the last race, Hulkenberg had to cling on to his points finish, holding off Webber by two-tenths of a second for his second points finish of the year.

Kamui Kobayashi – Thwarted by an hydraulic problem in qualifying which prevented him from setting a time in Q3, Kobayashi held onto his ninth place at the start. A bold pass on Button halfway through the race allowed him to claim fifth, building up enough of a gap to stay safe from the recovering Vettel.
Sergio Perez – Started a career-best fifth but clipped Grosjean at the start and collected a puncture which destroyed his race.

Daniel Ricciardo – No Q3 heroics this weekend – in fact he was out-qualified by his team mate for the first time this year. He and Vergne were closely-matched in the race until the final dozen laps, when Ricciardo began to drop back.
Jean-Eric Vergne – Finished five seconds ahead of his team mate as he lost performance sharply in the final laps. Nonetheless he finished ahead of Ricciardo for the fourth race in a row.

Start, Barcelona, 2012Pastor Maldonado – Only 14th-fastest on Friday but said he was feeling confident. He was second-fastest in final practice and repeated the feat in qualifying before Hamilton’s penalty handed him his first pole position. Lost the lead to Alonso at the start but an aggressively early second stop got him ahead again. After that he withstood considerable pressure to deliver his first win and Williams’ first since 2004.
Bruno Senna – The contrast in fortunes between the Williams drivers was especially stark on Saturday as Senna spun out during Q1. In the race he delayed his first pit stop, moving up to seventh. On lap 12, shortly after being passed by Grosjean, he was rammed out of the race by Schumacher.

Heikki Kovalainen – A mistake in qualifying left him behind his team mate on the grid. But he passed Petrov at the start and finished the race 15 seconds ahead. He was 24 seconds behind the next car which, for the second time this year for Caterham, was Massa’s Ferrari.
Vitaly Petrov – Caterham did not run their new exhaust set-up in Spain, but despite that Petrov was three-tenths off Senna’s time in Q1. He wasn’t happy with his KERS map in the race and steadily dropped back from his team mate.

Pedro de la Rosa – Ran HRT’s new aerodynamic package and briefly stayed in front of Charles Pic at the start. Crossed the line in last place but was pleased to see the chequered flag at the Circuit de Catalunya for the first time since 1999.
Narain Karthikeyan – Retired shortly after his second pit-stop with a technical problem.

Timo Glock – Started behind his team mate for the second time after encountering yellow flags on his second run in Q1. Moved ahead at the start and brought the car home 18th, lapped twice.
Charles Pic – Pic had a spin early on in the race and was struggling with a driveshaft problem when Alonso came up to lap him. The stewards found Pic didn’t move aside quickly enough and handed him a drive-through penalty, but his car’s problem had already become terminal by then.

Qualifying and race results summary

Started Gap to team mate Laps leading team mate Pitted Finished Gap to team mate
Sebastian Vettel 7th -0.093s 65/65 3 6th Didn’t finish on same laps
Mark Webber 11th +0.093s 0/65 3 11th Didn’t finish on same laps
Jenson Button 10th +0.479s 24/66 3 9th +7.106s
Lewis Hamilton 24th -0.479s 42/66 2 8th -7.106s
Fernando Alonso 2nd -0.582s 65/65 3 2nd Didn’t finish on same laps
Felipe Massa 16th +0.582s 0/65 3 15th Didn’t finish on same laps
Michael Schumacher 8th +0.022s 1/12 1
Nico Rosberg 6th -0.022s 11/12 3 7th
Kimi Raikkonen 4th +0.063s 64/66 3 3rd -10.915s
Romain Grosjean 3rd -0.063s 2/66 3 4th +10.915s
Paul di Resta 12th -0.052s 25/65 3 14th +15.951s
Nico Hulkenberg 13th +0.052s 40/65 3 10th -15.951s
Kamui Kobayashi 9th +0.124s 37/37 3 5th
Sergio Perez 5th -0.124s 0/37 3
Daniel Ricciardo 15th +0.177s 16/65 3 13th +4.866s
Jean-Eric Vergne 14th -0.177s 49/65 3 12th -4.866s
Pastor Maldonado 1st -1.601s 12/12 3 1st
Bruno Senna 17th +1.601s 0/12 0
Heikki Kovalainen 19th +0.23s 63/65 3 16th -15.151s
Vitaly Petrov 18th -0.23s 2/65 3 17th +15.151s
Pedro de la Rosa 22nd -3.567s 18/22 4 19th
Narain Karthikeyan 23rd +3.567s 4/22 2
Timo Glock 21st +0.45s 33/35 3 18th
Charles Pic 20th -0.45s 2/35 2

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 Spanish Grand Prix weekend?

  • Sebastian Vettel (1%)
  • Mark Webber (0%)
  • Lewis Hamilton (28%)
  • Jenson Button (0%)
  • Fernando Alonso (6%)
  • Felipe Massa (0%)
  • Michael Schumacher (1%)
  • Nico Rosberg (0%)
  • Kimi Raikkonen (3%)
  • Romain Grosjean (0%)
  • Paul di Resta (0%)
  • Nico Hulkenberg (0%)
  • Kamui Kobayashi (3%)
  • Sergio Perez (0%)
  • Daniel Ricciardo (0%)
  • Jean-Eric Vergne (0%)
  • Pastor Maldonado (57%)
  • Bruno Senna (0%)
  • Heikki Kovalainen (0%)
  • Vitaly Petrov (0%)
  • Narain Karthikeyan (0%)
  • Pedro de la Rosa (0%)
  • Timo Glock (0%)
  • Charles Pic (1%)

Total Voters: 754

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Rate the Race: Spanish Grand Prix

What did you think of this weekend’s race? Give your verdict here:

2012 Spanish Grand Prix

Browse all 2012 Spanish Grand Prix articles

Image ?é?® Red Bull/Getty images, Lotus F1 Team/LAT, Williams/LAT

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202 comments on Vote for your Spanish GP Driver of the Weekend

  1. sketchyterry (@sketchyterry) said on 14th May 2012, 17:32

    Its tight between Maldonado and Hamilton, very tight! If you voted for anyone else then you were properly not watching the 2012 Spanish Grand Prix or something. Anyway I just (JUST!) went for Hamilton. Mainly because the Williams is a quick car and Maldonado did some without doubt nice driving to finish 1st but thats were he started and no overtakes were required from him throughout the race. Yes he did a great job of conserving his tires but someone else did better, of course im talking about Hamilton. 31 laps on Pirelli tires while gaining 16 (almost 17) places and beating his team mate despite starting 14 places behind and another pitstop blunder, albeit a small one. Finally chuck in a pole lap that was over half second quicker than anyone else which he would then have to get mentally over losing and starting at the other end of the grid.

    Driver of the weekend, Hamilton!

  2. Sinnr (@sinnr) said on 14th May 2012, 17:46

    It was Lewis for me this weekend. Simply because of his total attitude over the whole weekend. When I saw the painful interview that Martin Whitmarsh gave, telling the whole world how Lewis told him how he supported him and the team, even though they cast him the win and lost him points at the last GP. Yes, after the enormous cock up they made, Lewis was still man enough to show that he truly is a TEAM player. I am not going to get into the Whitmarsh favouring Button nonsense.

  3. baldgye (@baldgye) said on 14th May 2012, 17:47

    Had to go for Hamilton in the end, despite everything he didn’t complain (openly) just got on and made a 2 stop work where no one else did whilst also beating his team mate (and current title contender) whilst starting 14 places behind him.

    A very important race for Hamilton this season and if his new attitude can contiune for the other races and his car contiunes to be very competetive he can take the title

  4. west (@west) said on 14th May 2012, 18:11

    Hamilton was outstanding on that 2 stop he managed to pass 19 cars apart from pastor, alonso and the 2 lotus, thats why he got my vote.

  5. CarolinaBlue704 (@carolinablue704) said on 14th May 2012, 18:15

    1. Maldonado
    2. Hamilton
    3. Alonso

    Honorable mention: Kobayashi!

  6. DT (@dt) said on 14th May 2012, 18:22

    Tough choice but i had to give it to Hamilton. Despite the odds, he proved to everyone what a great driver he is… making two stop strategy work and finishing circa 7 secs ahead of his team mate even though he started 14 places behind him.. That is an incredible achievement. Pastor also did a great job fight off Alonso’s threat so great drive from him

  7. sumedh said on 14th May 2012, 18:22

    Hamilton was brilliant. He was composed, yet aggressive and on the limit all the time. But let’s not forget that the Mclaren is indeed the fastest car.

    Maldonado was just supreme. Alonso was relentless for the 10 laps after the third stop but Pastor did not make a single mistake. He had it all under control all the time. Pastor for me, no doubt

  8. David BR (@david-br) said on 14th May 2012, 18:24

    It’s the weekend. So Hamilton. Fastest in qualifying, best tyre preserver during the race. Also magnanimous with his team’s blunders, commendable in his desire to congratulate Williams after the race. Maldonado second – as he probably should have been if McLaren hadn’t blundered and FIA not succumbed to another bout of Hamilton bashing. (And here I’m factoring in their decision to nothing about Perez forcing Hamilton off track and losing position for a manouvre they have punished someone – oh look, Hamilton – in the past.)

  9. TheNikii (@thenikii) said on 14th May 2012, 18:24

    Hamilton did a great job in qualifying and race, and would have most likely won in not the penalty, but even then if Maldonado had got only podium my vote would ho to him. He did a tremendous job, I didn’t ever expect him getting higher than 5th in normal conditions this year.

  10. Alex Frost (@frosty) said on 14th May 2012, 18:35

    When it came down to it, Maldonado lost his pole position and had to rely on the team getting him back in front, as I don’t believe he would have had the racecraft to pass Alonso on track. Admittedly he didn’t make any mistakes all race, but pressure was taken off him in the final stint due to the nature of Alonso eating up his tyres – and probably being told to focus on retaining 2nd place instead of going all out for the win when it became apparent Raikonnen could be a serious threat. For the first time in a long long time, I genuinely believe Hamilton drove the best of anyone all weekend. A superb qualifying lap, which would have still been pole for sure even without the fuel blunder by the team. Very very tricky to make up places on a two stop strategy with the tyres this year, and a very mature drive from a man who (like many others) gets easily frustrated, particularly at having to hold back on the Pirellis.

    Definitely not Schumacher though. I saw this… I had a chuckle before I realised just how dark it was. https://fbcdn-sphotos-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-ash3/p480x480/525877_10151706301515510_654145509_24497999_1508522230_n.jpg

  11. Mads (@mads) said on 14th May 2012, 18:39

    That duel at the front could have been fought out by Alonso and Vettel, and I don’t think it would have looked much different.
    Maldonardo drove like a much more experienced driver. Both in qualifying and in the race.
    He was just magnificent.

  12. JamieFranklinF1 (@jamiefranklinf1) said on 14th May 2012, 19:14

    I really dislike Maldonado, but you can’t deny that he was the best driver this weekend. I wish I could give it to Alonso or Raikkonen, but I believe their strategies let them down.

  13. banaaaan said on 14th May 2012, 19:30

    why did torro rosso not get a penilty one of there cars had both compounds on at the same time at one point in the race

    • Ral (@ral) said on 14th May 2012, 21:38

      No he didn’t. The markings had just been rubbed off in a fight with if I remember correctly, Grosjaen in which Grosjaen lost the other end-plate of his front wing.

  14. PJA (@pja) said on 14th May 2012, 19:35

    I had to vote for Maldonado. Even when he was promoted to pole I thought he and Williams would fade in the race and the victory would be between Alonso, Raikkonen and Vettel, but he didn’t put a wheel wrong all race.

    I think Hamilton was a close runner up, he put in a great lap in qualifying and it was only the team’s mistake which put him at the back of the grid, I feared he would let this get to him and we would see a scrappy race we had got used to seeing last year. But he put in a great performance and was the only driver to manage a two stop strategy and finished in front of his teammate despite starting at the back.

  15. caci99 (@caci99) said on 14th May 2012, 19:37

    This week saw some good driving from different drivers.
    Vettel did good to finish 6th despite having a drive through penalty and front wing change.
    Kobayashi did his usual ala Kobayashi overtakes
    Raikkonen, although an “untroubled” race, showed speed and determination.
    Alonso does not delude. He keeps delivering good drives in a car which has yet to be fully competitive.
    Maldonado… well, a surprise strong performance in quali and race. Handled very well the pressure from Alonso,
    and managed at the same degree the lost of position in the start, hunting down Alonso not letting him extend the gap, and with the good strategy, he made it. He transformed his maiden pole position in race win.
    But to me has to be Hamilton. I don’t do it very often, but this time I would have given him two votes if there was an option for that. He posted the best time in quali, got relegated back to the grid for no fault of his own, maintained a cool head (rare for him), did the overtake of the race (two cars in one turn), managed very well his tyres, finished ahead of his team mate, what else? Oh yes, still haven’t heard a word complaining about his team, which has cost him pretty much this time around.

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