Vote for your Belgian GP Driver of the Weekend

2012 Belgian Grand Prix

Michael Schumacher, Kimi Raikkonen, Spa-Francorchamps, 2012Which F1 driver had the best race weekend in Belgium?

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

Driver notes

Sebastian Vettel – Missed out on Q3 for the second time this year, by just 0.012s. Held up by the first-corner crash he fell to 12th but passed several cars including his team mate and Felipe Massa. Avoided pitting at the same time as Michael Schumacher and ran long, successfully completing the race with a single stop to take second place.
Mark Webber – Out-qualified Vettel but a gearbox change penalty dropped him back behind. Having got ahead at the start he struggled to slipstream past Senna with his inferior straight-line speed and ended up being passed by Vettel and Massa. Quick-thinking in the pits allowed him to avoid a penalty for an unsafe release.

Jenson Button – Opting to stick with McLaren’s new wing was clearly the right way to go and earned Button his first pole position in three years. He controlled the race from there.
Lewis Hamilton – Struggled with the old wing in qualifying and made a couple of mistakes in Q3 which left him seventh on the grid. Didn’t make a great start but was blameless when he was hit from the left by Grosjean, triggering the first-corner crash.

Fernando Alonso – Did his usual damage limiting job in qualifying but had no chance to do so in the race when he was taken out. His first no-score in 24 races.
Felipe Massa – Gave Ferrari some cheer by salvaging fifth, passing Webber on the way, after qualifying poorly. His lap times at the beginning of his second stint looked particularly encouraging for the team.

Michael Schumacher – In the points at his 300th Grand Prix appearance despite being slowed by a problem with sixth gear. Put a great move on Raikkonen early in the race and hung on doggedly with his DRS later on. Was judged not to have done anything wrong when he pitted while dicing with Vettel.
Nico Rosberg – His weekend was ruined when his car failed five laps into the only dry practice session. A gearbox change and a mis-timed final run in Q1 left him 23rd on the grid. Like his team mate he abandoned his attempt to make a one-stop strategy work. Caught Di Resta at the end but ran out of time to pass him for the final point.

Kimi Raikkonen – Lotus’s promised pace never materialised: Raikkonen started and finished third. The scrapping of the team’s Double DRS ‘device’ after the wet practice didn’t help matters, but the E20′s usual strong race pace was not in evidence. “My car wasn?t great all weekend and we couldn?t find a competitive setup,” he said. “On new tyres it was okay, but we had to use a lot of downforce to prevent sliding. ”
Romain Grosjean – Said his collision with Hamilton was an honest mistake arising from his mistaken belief he was completely ahead of the McLaren. That he admitted the error and accepted his punishment is to his credit, but it wasn’t his first such collision this year and his one-race ban will surely impress upon him the need to be more careful in future. There are other drivers who need to learn the same lesson.

Nico Hulkenberg, Force India, Spa-Francorchamps, 2012Paul di Resta – Elevated to fourth by the first-lap crash but knew from the start he faced a tough race without KERS. This made him an easy target for several drivers and he ended up slipping to tenth.
Nico Hulkenberg – Started on hard tyres and impressively passed Raikkonen after the restart to run second. He couldn’t keep the Lotus behind on raw pace, nor Vettel’s one-stopping Red Bull, but he raced well with Schumacher and hung on for a career-best fourth.

Kamui Kobayashi – An excellent qualifying performance turned out to be for naught. Managed to finish the race despite a significant amount of damage to his car.
Sergio Perez – Third place was on the cards in qualifying had he repeated his Q2 time in Q3 – as it was he started fourth. Was also eliminated in the Grosjean crash.

Daniel Ricciardo – Ricciardo moved up to sixth after the crash then passed Di Resta for fifth. But his pace slackened when he switched to hard tyres for his last two stints and he was passed by Vergne. Nonetheless, he equalled his best result so far with ninth.
Jean-Eric Vergne – His engine went into anti-stall at the start which proved to be a blessing in disguise as it kept him out of the first corner melee. He emerged in seventh behind Ricciardo. Lost time behind Rosberg on two occasions but nipped past his team mate to take eighth.

Pastor Maldonado – Qualified third but a penalty for impeding Hulkenberg dropped him to sixth. His jump start evoked memories of Olivier Grouillard’s 20 years ago. It put him in the firing line of the first-corner crash, and although he was able to keep going he then crashed into Glock at the restart ending his race. He picked up three penalties in one weekend and carries two of them on to Monza.
Bruno Senna – Spun in qualifying, damaging his front wing and ending up 17th on the grid. Was coming under pressure from the Toro Rossos for eighth when a slow puncture forced a pit stop which dropped him out of the points.

Timo Glock, Marussia, Spa-Francorchamps, 2012Heikki Kovalainen – Had a scruffy race including a spin and a half-spin at Pouhon. A slow getaway from his first pit stop led to him clipping Narain Karthikeyan’s HRT. The team were fined ??10,000.
Vitaly Petrov – Finished 14th despite a slow first pit stop.

Pedro de la Rosa – Comfortably ahead of his team mate as usual, he fell behind the delayed Kovalainen three laps from the end and finished last.
Narain Karthikeyan – Moved up to 14th at the start before slipping behind the Caterhams and Kobayashi. Might have had a chance of beating de la Rosa but he crashed out at Stavelot when his front-left wheel came off after the nut had been cross-threaded during his pit stop.

Timo Glock – Pronounced himself “very happy” after taking 15th following a spirited dice with his team mate. Glock was especially pleased with Marussia’s upgrade: “It was great to be really ‘racing’ again after some very positive steps forward for the team. Not only have we brought some strong updates to the car, the team have worked really hard to get on top of the problem I experienced in the last few races and here it looked positive.” Team principal John Booth felt Glock would have had an even better race had he not been hit by Maldonado at the restart.
Charles Pic – The only driver apart from the top two finishers to complete the race with a single stop, Pic said he struggled with tyre degradation.

Qualifying and race results summary

Started Gap to team mate Laps leading team mate Pitted Finished Gap to team mate
Sebastian Vettel 10th +0.246s 31/44 1 2nd -17.62s
Mark Webber 12th -0.246s 13/44 2 6th +17.62s
Jenson Button 1st -0.821s 0/0 1 1st
Lewis Hamilton 7th +0.821s 0/0 0
Fernando Alonso 5th -0.549s 0/0 0
Felipe Massa 14th +0.549s 0/0 2 5th
Michael Schumacher 13th -0.439s 44/44 2 7th -11.737s
Nico Rosberg 23rd +0.439s 0/44 2 11th +11.737s
Kimi Raikkonen 3rd -0.333s 0/0 2 3rd
Romain Grosjean 8th +0.333s 0/0 0
Paul di Resta 9th -0.126s 0/44 2 10th +35.94s
Nico Hulkenberg 11th +0.126s 44/44 2 4th -35.94s
Kamui Kobayashi 2nd -0.348s 0/0 3 13th
Sergio Perez 4th +0.348s 0/0 0
Daniel Ricciardo 16th +0.189s 26/44 2 9th +4.117s
Jean-Eric Vergne 15th -0.189s 18/44 2 8th -4.117s
Pastor Maldonado 6th -1.308s 0/4 1
Bruno Senna 17th +1.308s 4/4 2 12th
Heikki Kovalainen 18th -0.228s 7/43 2 17th +56.574s
Vitaly Petrov 19th +0.228s 36/43 2 14th -56.574s
Pedro de la Rosa 21st -1.959s 3/29 3 18th
Narain Karthikeyan 24th +1.959s 26/29 2
Timo Glock 20th -1.157s 17/43 2 15th -15.574s
Charles Pic 22nd +1.157s 26/43 1 16th +15.574s

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 Belgian Grand Prix weekend?

  • Sebastian Vettel (20%)
  • Mark Webber (0%)
  • Lewis Hamilton (0%)
  • Jenson Button (53%)
  • Fernando Alonso (1%)
  • Felipe Massa (2%)
  • Michael Schumacher (3%)
  • Nico Rosberg (0%)
  • Kimi Raikkonen (5%)
  • Romain Grosjean (4%)
  • Paul di Resta (0%)
  • Nico Hulkenberg (9%)
  • Kamui Kobayashi (1%)
  • Sergio Perez (0%)
  • Daniel Ricciardo (0%)
  • Jean-Eric Vergne (0%)
  • Pastor Maldonado (0%)
  • Bruno Senna (1%)
  • Heikki Kovalainen (0%)
  • Vitaly Petrov (0%)
  • Narain Karthikeyan (0%)
  • Pedro de la Rosa (0%)
  • Timo Glock (0%)
  • Charles Pic (1%)

Total Voters: 571

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Rate the Race: Belgian Grand Prix

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2012 Belgian Grand Prix

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Image ?? Daimler/Hoch Zwei, Force India F1 Team, Marussia

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148 comments on Vote for your Belgian GP Driver of the Weekend

  1. Button produced a World Champion drive on Sunday, coming close to a grand slam. The fact that his win was the first lights-to-flag this year really accentuates the brilliance of his drive. With these accolades, one would naturally assume I gave Button the award for “driver of the weekend”. Instead, I gave it to someone else.

    Jean-Eric Vergne has outqualified Dan Ricciardo for the last two races, and having done so at the drivers’ track of Spa against Ricciardo (the “qualifier of the two”), it’s an accomplishment in itself. His points-scoring finish (obviously helped by the nasty pile-up at the start) ahead of Ricciardo and his gutsy overtake on Nico Rosberg are all reasons why I gave the vote to Jev.

  2. Force Maikel (@force-maikel) said on 3rd September 2012, 18:27

    For me it has to be Schumacher. He drove a brilliant first stint but again a mistake be Merc putting him on a one stop strategy trashed his chances. If they had gone with a two stopper he could have battled for P3 or even P2.

  3. cg22me (@cg22me) said on 3rd September 2012, 18:34

    Button’s dominance has got to seal the vote…

    But honourable mentions for Vettel’s drive to second, Hulkenburg’s impressive and mature drive, and Kobayashi who managed to thrash around a horrendously dying car, on top of his brilliant second in qualifying.

  4. F1Yankee (@f1yankee) said on 3rd September 2012, 18:35

    who are the ding dongs that voted for hamilton and alonso? your driver of the weekend didn’t make it to the 1st turn, thanks for voting.

  5. Dimitris 1395 (@dimitris-1395) said on 3rd September 2012, 19:00

    Button was exquisite all weekend long. He put three amazing laps in qualifying, he led every lap with excellent pace and he was a couple tenths ashort of a Grand Slam. If he can continue to deliver such performances he can be a championship contender.

  6. robk23 (@robk23) said on 3rd September 2012, 19:06

    Voted Button, such a shame he didn’t get the fastest lap so he could get a grand slam (I was thinking about that a couple of laps from the end).

    As I was expecting, somebody thought it was hilarious to vote for Romain Gross Jeans.

  7. SoLiDG (@solidg) said on 3rd September 2012, 19:16

    It was a hard one.
    Jenson drove a faultless GP.
    And Sebastian drove brilliant in the race.
    He was arguably the fastest man in the race.
    Having seen the race from Eau Rouge (lucky me yes) Jenson’s race what great but looked like a walk in the park (thanks to his own qualy).
    Vettel’s race was full attack and he made some great overtakes and was fun to watch.
    And Vettel just edged it out for me as he gave the crowd some great overtakes!

  8. JenniKate (@jennikate) said on 3rd September 2012, 19:22

    This was a tough one, Button had an amazing weekend, top notch in choice of setup and qualified superbly. But he had nothing to do in the race but stay out front and protect his tyres. Admittedly that’s not the easiest thing!

    Hulkenberg also had a good although not spectacular qualifying, but he had an amazing race. Battling with the top guys, keeping his car in the fight and being very clean out on the track.

    I went with Hulkenberg because when an opportunity arose for him to be noticed he grabbed it with both hands and put in a strong performance.

    Honorable mentions to Vettel who drove a blinding race and Raikkonen for that brilliant pass on Schumacher.

  9. AndrewTanner (@andrewtanner) said on 3rd September 2012, 19:22

    This is a tough one. I have two drivers in mind, Button and Vettel.

    Button was on it from Q1 onwards, his qualifying was no fluke and he showed supreme confidence throughout. His race was flawless.

    Vettel had a scrappy qualifying but once the race was underway he was the most entertaining driver on the field. He turned he bus-stop into a nightmare for many other drivers and wasted little time despatching his various competitors wih some risky but committed moves.

    Vettel gets my vote. I found him a pleasure to watch and he showed me that he has skill when it comes to working his way up the field but still managing to look after his tyres.

  10. Chelseano161997 (@chelseano161997) said on 3rd September 2012, 19:24

    It was a tough call between Seb and Jenson but as Jenson won’t the race I gave Seb my vote. Hulkenberg drove a good race too but I think the overtaking from Seb just edged my vote. He showed the people who say he can’t overtake what he can do when needed. I like the fact that Mark and Seb are allowed to race I can’t imagine Massa and Alonso being allowed to do that in a similar position!

  11. 91jb12 (@91jb12) said on 3rd September 2012, 19:29

    DOTW- Could say Button but last year, Button got it for doing effectively what Vettel did this year, woeful qualy and start, superb comeback to 2nd.
    So I voted Vettel

    DOTR- Vettel, followed closely by Hulkenberg and Button
    DOTW- Button

  12. GongTong (@gongtong) said on 3rd September 2012, 19:43

    Hulkenberg was great and I really wanted to vote for him.

    But, as is usually the case when JB gets things going how he wants them, he was peerless.

  13. Paul-2013 said on 3rd September 2012, 19:47

    Romain Grosjean (4%)!!??
    Best driver? Oh, u are right thanks to him we could not see 2 of the best drivers of the champ more than 5 seconds.

    who’s voting that way? greenpeace supporters against fuel consumption?

  14. John H (@john-h) said on 3rd September 2012, 19:53

    Button no question. Vettel was good but Webber was on Q2 tyres so it was hard to compare quite how good he really was. No points again for Williams. They’ve got completely the wrong driver line up going for the quick dollar and to be honest I hope they finish 8th in the constructors, it might just get Bottas a race seat.

  15. I voted for Button, on the basis of his performance in both qualifying and the race, but I sure am enjoying reading the comments of those who voted for the driver currently in second place. :-) Vettel’s performance was certainly the highlight of the race for me, but that doesn’t make Button’s domination of the weekend any less impressive. He’s too much of a seasoned veteran to let the problems he’s been having this season psych him out at all, and now look — he’s only 16 points behind his teammate.

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