Start, Monza, 2012

Vote for your Italian GP Driver of the Weekend

2012 Italian Grand PrixPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

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

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

Italian Grand Prix driver-by-driver

Red Bull

Sebastian Vettel – Fifth on the grid was a good result as Red Bull were outside the top ten times at the end of practice. But he received a drive-through penalty in the race after the stewards deemed he transgressed while defending from Alonso, though Vettel insisted on the radio he hadn’t pushed the Ferrari driver off. Was on course to salvage some points only to retire with alternator failure for the second time this year.

Mark Webber – Failed to reach Q3 and started poorly, slipping to 14th. Found passing easier than it had been at Spa, taking Ricciardo, Rosberg and Di Resta, and claiming a place from Senna when the Williams driver went off at the Roggia chicane. Had just inherited sixth from his team mate when he spun at the exit of Ascari. “The rear tyres were completely finished,” he said. “I managed to keep it off the wall, but then the tyres were so heavily flat-spotted, I was worried about damaging the car. We do 330kph around here, I couldn?t see the track, so we decided to retire.”

McLaren

Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, Monza, 2012Jenson Button – Joined Hamilton on the front row and although he lost a place to Massa at the start he passed the Ferrari on lap 19. Was on course for second place when his engine died: “I’m told it was a fuel system problem that we?re still investigating,” he said.

Lewis Hamilton – The endless quizzing about his future clearly did not disturb his performance. Now has the most pole positions of any driver this season after claiming his fourth. He then equalled Alonso’s three wins this year with a fairly comfortable win. However, having backed off the pace when Button retired he had to get back on it as the progress of Perez gave McLaren cause for concern.

Ferrari

Fernando Alonso – For once, Ferrari were right up there on one-lap pace in dry weather conditions. So Alonso was frustrated at missing out on an “easy” pole when a rear anti-roll bar failure at the beginning of Q3 left him tenth on the grid. A good start saw him claim fifth from Schumacher by lap seven, and he emerged from his single pit stop right behind Vettel. Was furious after being edged onto the grass at Curva Grande but passed Vettel on the track before the Red Bull driver got his penalty. Massa then got out of his way but he couldn’t hold back Perez. That left him third, but his championship situation still looks healthy with a 37-point lead.

Felipe Massa – Massa nearly sent the Tifosi into rapture as nearly passed both McLarens at the start – he had to settle for just taking Button. That was the highlight of a race made difficult by a loss of telemetry. Button passed him before he pitted, and after that there was no question of him being allowed to hold position in front of Alonso. Perez breezed past him as well, and by the end Massa’s tyres had gone off so badly he was almost caught by the Raikkonen/Schumacher battle.

Mercedes

Michael Schumacher, Mercedes, Monza, 2012Michael Schumacher – Led the first practice session and “secretly hoped” that would lead to Mercedes making progress this weekend. Radio messages revealed the team keeping an eagle eye on tyre temperatures with both drivers – two pit stops were the order of the day for the W03s. Schumacher slipped back from fourth at the start, but he roared back into contention after his final pit stop. When the chequered flag fell he was in sixth place with Raikkonen’s Lotus in his crosshairs.

Nico Rosberg – Started sixth but made life more difficult for himself with a dreadful start. By the end of lap one he was 11th and still wasn’t done going backwards: Perez and Webber demoted him further. “I had no grip on my option tyres in the first stint, which were the same set that gave me problems in Q3,” he said. After dumping them he began to make progress. He was much happier on the hards and was within range of Schumacher at the end, setting fastest lap on the way.

Lotus

Kimi Raikkonen – Fifth was slightly better than Raikkonen expected to get from the weekend and he moved up to third in the drivers’ championship. “But we lost some points to Fernando [Alonso] which is not ideal,” he said.

Jerome d’Ambrosio – A one-off race appearance is a tricky needle to thread in these days of virtually zero in-season testing. Fortunately he’d already driven the car at Mugello. Hulkenberg’s problem helped him progress to Q2 but he could only manage 15th on the grid. He had an off-track moment during the race and aggravated the recovering Force India driver with his defensive moves. But he brought the car home on the lead lap in 13th despite losing his KERS on lap six.

Force India

Paul di Resta – Qualified a superb fourth but had to start ninth due to a gearbox penalty. He was passed by Perez early on, then came under attack from Senna. The Williams went off at the Roggia trying to pass Di Resta, but the stewards judged the move to be fair. Webber passed him next as he struggled on the medium tyres, but he liked the balance of the car on hards much better. Was passed by the faster two-stopping Mercedes towards the end.

Nico Hulkenberg – A fuel pick-up problem in Q1 ruined his weekend. He started on hard tyres but felt his brake pedal go long early on which hampered his ability to make up places. It was this that ultimately led the team to retire the car.

Sauber

Sergio Perez, Sauber, Monza, 2012Kamui Kobayashi – Having qualified in the top ten he had to start on medium tyres, unlike his team mate. Perez came past him on lap seven and by the end of Kobayashi’s stint the other Sauber was a second per lap faster. Felt his problems on Friday – when the car was bouncing so much he “nearly spun on the straight” – impaired his ability to find a good race set-up. Came home ninth.

Sergio Perez – Started on hard tyres then switched to mediums. At all stages he was consistently among the quickest runners even as he had to pass a string of cars. By the end of the race his victims included both Ferraris and Kimi Raikkonen’s Lotus – three times. Didn’t have enough time to catch Hamilton but gave it a go anyway, and was three-tenths off the fastest lap on the final tour.

Toro Rosso

Daniel Ricciardo – Entered the Parabolica in tenth place on the last lap but lost power as he headed to the line and was passed by both Williams drivers.

Jean-Eric Vergne – Spun violently at the Rettifilio on lap nine and was pitched into the air by the kerb. “I don?t know why I crashed,” he said. “All I can remember is that when I braked, I completely lost control of the back end of the car.” He later Tweeted the problem looked like suspension failure.

Williams

Pastor Maldonado – Started 22nd following his two penalties from Belgium. Recovered to finish 11th after having exactly the kind of quiet weekend he needed, a point reinforced by the “less trouble, more speed” slogan on his helmet.

Bruno Senna – Had an incident-packed start to the race, being edged over the run-off at Rettifilio by Rosberg, then having his run-in with Di Resta – the latter costing him a place to Webber. Picked up a point on the last lap while under pressure from his considerably faster two-stopping team mate.

Caterham

Vitaly Petrov, Caterham, Monza, 2012Heikki Kovalainen – From early on in practice Kovalainen said he was much happier with the Caterham’s balance than he had been at Spa. But he was less happy with his race pace: “I didn’t really have the performance I had on the longer runs on Friday and the grip level felt lower so I couldn’t really attack and that held me up a bit on each set of tyres.”

Vitaly Petrov – Was less than two-tenths of a second behind Kovalainen at the flag, the other Caterham having been able to use his DRS because he was close to Alonso.

HRT

Pedro de la Rosa – Led his team mate home comfortably and was 12 seconds behind Glock’s Marussia.

Narain Karthikeyan – Out-qualified de la Rosa for the first time this year. But he damaged his front wing at the start and had to change it.

Marussia

Timo Glock – Lost time with an early pit stop after losing part of his front wing on the first lap. “From there I couldn?t really do much as we had lost a bit of performance and the car was just ‘okay’ to drive.”

Charles Pic – Led Glock home for the third time this year but he also switched to a two-stop strategy during the race.

Qualifying and race results summary

Started Gap to team mate Laps leading team mate Pitted Finished Gap to team mate
Sebastian Vettel 5th -0.122s 43/47 1 22nd Didn’t finish on same laps
Mark Webber 11th +0.122s 4/47 1 20th Didn’t finish on same laps
Jenson Button 2nd +0.123s 0/32 1
Lewis Hamilton 1st -0.123s 32/32 1 1st
Fernando Alonso 10th +1.431s 16/53 1 3rd -9.073s
Felipe Massa 3rd -1.431s 37/53 1 4th +9.073s
Michael Schumacher 4th -0.293s 52/53 2 6th -2.291s
Nico Rosberg 6th +0.293s 1/53 2 7th +2.291s
Kimi Raikkonen 7th -0.666s 52/53 1 5th -44.98s
Jerome D’Ambrosio 15th +0.666s 1/53 1 13th +44.98s
Paul di Resta 9th 44/50 1 8th Not on same lap
Nico Hulkenberg 24th 6/50 1 21st Not on same lap
Kamui Kobayashi 8th -0.218s 6/53 1 9th +39.542s
Sergio Perez 12th +0.218s 47/53 1 2nd -39.542s
Daniel Ricciardo 14th -0.129s 8/8 1 12th
Jean-Eric Vergne 16th +0.129s 0/8 0
Pastor Maldonado 22nd -0.222s 11/53 2 11th +0.538s
Bruno Senna 13th +0.222s 42/53 1 10th -0.538s
Heikki Kovalainen 17th -0.505s 47/52 2 14th -0.199s
Vitaly Petrov 18th +0.505s 5/52 2 15th +0.199s
Pedro de la Rosa 23rd +0.188s 29/52 1 18th -14.868s
Narain Karthikeyan 21st -0.188s 23/52 1 19th +14.868s
Timo Glock 19th -0.034s 6/52 2 17th +27.393s
Charles Pic 20th +0.034s 46/52 2 16th -27.393s

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.

[poll id=”359″]

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2012 Italian Grand Prix

Browse all 2012 Italian Grand Prix articles

Images ?? Ferrari spa/Ercole Colombo, McLaren/Hoch Zwei, Sauber F1 Team, Caterham/LAT

136 comments on “Vote for your Italian GP Driver of the Weekend”

  1. as much as i’d like to vote for Perez, I believe much of his 2nd place was due to the excellent tyre preservation of the Sauber and starting on the Hard tyre. I’m sure if Kob had the same strategy he’d have done the same.

    gonna vote for Hamiton as it is the driver of the ‘weekend’. he got Pole and won the race. Would vote for Alonso but his moaning about vettel put me off.

    1. I think it the same as you did. Perez was very good on race day, but Hamilton did a better job during the weekend, and he was not in position to give us some spectacular driving, he got pole and his first position was almost never on threat.

    2. It seemed to be something more than “excellent tyre preservation”. Perez was faster on hard than others on medium, then he was faster on medium than others on hard.

      Some setup sweet spot must have been hit bang in the middle.

      1. yes because the hards are the better race tyre with heavier fuel. It seems to be a theme this year, the primes are better than the options during the race.

        1. In the first stint, he was faster on hards, because they were new. Mediums of the others in front, were used in Q3. In the second stint it’s obvios why he was faster: he had medium, the others hard. The strategy advantaged Perez a lot.

        2. seems to be a theme this year

          strategy advantaged Perez a lot

          I don’t think that’s all there is to it. Were it that simple, podiums would mostly be populated by drivers starting 11th or worse.

          Also, if it’s that obvious, why hasn’t everybody done the same this last race?

          We’ve seen nobody else with such a ridiculous speed advantage as what Perez had in practically every part of the race. I still think that explaining it away with such a plain strategy choice is not giving us the whole picture.

          1. but it’s the nature of the sauber car. it can run that strategy nicely

          2. As often in F1, it is a combination of those things, and Perez making excellent use of the opportunity I think.

            Still, since he’s already so far ahead I felt I could vote for Hamilton who was on it all weekend, just like Button will win for Spa as he was just on it, despite having an easy race and others who did a great job.

      2. Not sure you can compare PER pushing hard in his final stint on mediums to HAM cruising on older hard tyres as the McLaren clearly had more in the tank if he really needed it, but do see your point though.

        PER drove a great race but it again goes to show how handicapped you are by qualifying 10th compared to 11th with this qualy tyres rule. The two compounds used at Monza were the closest they’ve been all season which allowed conflicting strategies – I enjoyed the race but just think of what it could’ve been like if the top 10 qualifiers also had free choice of tyre from the start.

        Whereas HAM probably drove the best overall over the weekend all the press surrounding him is getting increasingly off-putting which is possibly why he’s not going to get many more driver of the weekend awards. A growing part of me is starting to wish he wins the championships this year and next to match Senna so he can retire straight away and I can start enjoying F1 impartially again!

        Slightly off topic but as for Luca’s comments – why would any team travel half way around the world for a 45 minute race? 90 minutes is not too much to ask, (dare I say less intelligent) people watch football for 90 mins every weekend so 90 minutes every other weekend at most is easily doable from a fan’s perspective (and in my opinion not enough!). Multiple races wouldn’t work without a big change in aero rules giving drivers the ability to follow closely and overtake within a couple of laps, otherwise you’re just going to create more processional racing. Look at BTCC – this series is usually really fun but only works because the grid-swap and ballast rules are workable in the context of cars that can race closely, overtake in quick order and survive small contacts.

    3. Yup, Have to agree. Perez’s strategy was obviously the optimum – hards with the heavy fuel load at the start and mediums towards the end allowed him to keep a much more consistent & high pace. But it wasn’t a strategy that was available to any of the car competing in Q3.

      Hamilton obviously had some pace in reserve, but if he had been pushed more I do wonder if his tyres would have lasted – the two Ferraris were pushing much more throughout and they fell back a lot in the last few laps.

      Its definitely between HAM and PER, but over the whole weekend HAM was setting the pace and you have to give him credit for that, and he drove an intelligent and controlled race.

  2. for me, it has to be Lewis. He was untouchable the whole weekend.

    1. Untouchable? Not even remotely close. Alonso was fastest in Q1 and Q2 but very unlucky in Q3; without that Hamilton wouldn’t have taken pole position or won IMO. Both Alonso and Perez drove better than Lewis this weekend.

      1. And maybe that’s why Lewis won eh? Your perception is ridiculous. Look at the lap chart and see for yourself that Lewis was much faster than both Ferraris with much to spare, if not just wait for the next race and you’ll see.

        1. @wooly – Choose your ground carefully! Singapore may not be a great track for the McLarens. Monza isn’t like any other track on the calendar.

          Don’t get me wrong, I agree that HAM did a great job and stamped his authority on the race. He has obviously learned a lot from the horror story of last season.

          However, I voted for PER. It was a hard decision to make. If HAM had dominated quali as well as the race, I would have voted differently, it was that close.

      2. I personally think it was easy for Alonso to claim having lost “an easy pole” – Massa got thrid and he was unable to show it; but maybe Massa just got a really good lap in and Alonso might have only taken his 3rd spot. A bit of gamesmanship. The Ferrari was quick, true, and he showed a good race, but his tyres too started to go off, just like Massa’s. We just won’t know. And Hamilton did get pole, and won easily.

  3. It doesnt happen so often, but I feel that the top 3 finnishers were also the best drivers of the weekend

    1. @brawngp and in the same order? I think so

    2. @brawngp Sorry to spoil a bit the party with that but Massa deserves a place amongst the top 3 drivers of the week end … Superb quali from him, had a great race as well until *we know what*. Poor pace afterward but maintain his position probably his way to say he got sleepy waiting for Alonso.
      Anyway that was strange to make the move so early in the race for Ferrari, almost cost them more places, or they were afraid Massa could pull away from Alonso ? Or to forget about it, people seems to forget easily except if it happens on the last few laps …

      But don’t make me say what I don’t, Alonso still had a good week end, Massa just had a beter one to my point of view

      1. Still had to go for Hamilton on that one

      2. So having something go wrong in almost every practice session, having your car break in quali, starting 7 positions down your teammate yet after half the race placig right behind him so your team thinks its better to switch positions .. all that summed up makes Alonso worse than Massa? I’m happy for Massa having two good weekends in a row because I really like him, but still Alonso did a better job given the circumstances.
        Without the quali problems I suppose he’d have been the only one challenging the McLarens for the win but we’ll never know and you can’t blame Hamilton for having a ‘perfect’ weekend so it should be him winning this one.

  4. Since Zanardi’s not on the list, I’ll go for Perez. Normally I don’t vote for drivers as far down the grid as that, but it was such a good giant-killing race that I had to.

    1. @Bullfrog

      Since Zanardi’s not on the list

      Well said!

    2. such a good giant-killing race

      I think soon Perez will have got too “big” to be classed as a giant killer, but I too am partial to giving DOTW to someone who shines rather than strictly the best day-at-the-office, even though that might sound daft. Hamilton is well capable of what he did this weekend: he got the most out of the car in qualifying and then did enough to lead from the front, but that’s just standard from him. For Perez to be mid-grid and then have such a mature drive (including a particularly excellent overtake on Raikonnen) is him grabbing the opportunity with both hands and producing an almost winning drive even though he rarely gets chance to do that. For that, I’d rather give the driver of the weekend to the 17-year-old graduating with a First than the 35-year-old Professor publishing yet another paper.

  5. those people voting for Perez must be joking. Hamilton was best during whole weekend (FP2, FP3, Qualifications and Race) while Perez was fast only on Sunday

    1. And they score the points on Sunday…

    2. Sunday is when it matters most. It’s got to be Perez.

    3. Are you comparing a Mclaren with a Sauber?!

      1. I voted for driver of the weekend not the driver of the Race

        1. i see your point but we have to weight the decision somewhat, i would say for me i count maybe 20% for practice 30% for qualifying and 50% for the race, though i understand that peoples opinion varies as to the balance of importance.

      2. Comparing McLaren with a Sauber @pnunocosta? mr. Sauber himself said they were the fastest on Sunday (not sure he was entirely serious though). It is clear that when they get everything together, Sauber have a great car, look at their Spa qualifying, look at the podiums Perez has, and where BUT,HAM were before the Germany update: yes, they are comparable at least in several of the races this season, and well done Sauber, and Perez, for getting the results from it.

      3. ?!?! Isn’t that what F1 in essence is… comparing different car manufacturers and drivers to one another? Seems a bit silly to disallow comparing a small race car manufacturer like Sauber with the multi-million pounds organisation of McLaren, when the former was clearly able to even outwit Hamilton if there were just some five laps more.

    4. It’s the same situation like in Budapest. The best driver of the race was undoubtly Kimi but Hamilton was the best driver of whole weekend. If Keith named this “Best driver of the Race” than I would choose Perez as well

    5. The other factor in favour of Hamilton over Perez is that he was coasting for much of the latter part of the race, including preserving the car after Button’s retirement. However I’m happy to vote Perez simply because he actually passed Alonso this time, rather than sitting behind him scared of overtaking (allegedly). A great drive, but one only made possible by ridiculous tire rules that penalize the fastest in qualifying.

      1. c’mon Hamilton did nothing best car, clean air, no overtakes and inherit pole from Alo failure! IMO obviously he Was daunt by Alo and Per amazing drives compare to his Boring performance that even maldonado done that, HAM was Lucky The 16 second gap was long enough ….

        1. Hamilton didn’t do “nothing”. He put in a flawless drive all weekend. But given the circumstances, I have no issues with a youngster in a Sauber getting the nod.

        2. He over took Sergio Perez after his pit stop to retake P1. The only driver in the race who in effect, passed Perez.

        3. Seems that many people thought that was enough for Button in Spa last weekend (had it even easier after that start, and no teammate to have equal car with HAM taking wrong wing ….), so why not?

      2. Perez had tyre advatage and everyone seems to forget that Button and Vettel got out of the race before Perez started flying, if those two drivers where on the track he woudnt even get close to 2nd place

  6. It’s hard to choose between Hamilton and Alonso, both did a great job under a pressure – Hamilton from the speculation surrounding his drive, Alonso from the car problems in practice and qualifying and from the Monza crowd.

    Lewis got a good start and managed the race really well, looked after his tyres and only went quick when he needed too. Any other weekend he’d take this poll comfortably, but I think I’m just going to give it to Alonso. Made a good start and stayed out of trouble, and passing two cars in two corners without any need for DRS was brilliant. Off the back of the non finish at Spa it would have been easy for him to be conservative or to be slightly flustered from the scary accident, but he went for his moves with conviction and to recover to the podium from a poor grid slot is the kind of drive we’ve come to expect from him so often that it doesn’t really seem special any more!

    Next best for me was Massa, did everything he could with a cracking start and a good first stint. Showed good pace relative to the other front runners until his tyres dropped off, which must have been tough to manage with the telemetry loss. More drives like this (and Spa) will surely cement him in for another season at Ferrari.

    Great races from Perez and Maldonado too. I was gutted for Ricciardo who also drove well.

  7. Driver of the race, Perez. But Driver of the weekend, easily Hamilton. Massa had a good race too, as did Button and Alonso. Heck, apart from the start, Rosberg did well too.

  8. Perez definately the winner here. Hamilton and Alonso close call for 2nd and 3rd. Both did an outstanding job (dominating or getting to 3rd from 10th).

    1. Well getting from 4th to 3rd was hardly Alonso’s work. But his first lap or two were superb.

  9. It’d be unfair not to pick Hamilton, as he was flawless and never looked back. He benefited from Ferrari’s problems to leave Italy with an easy win under his arm.

    But I’ll chose Perez. He was flying, and made it work very well in that first stint, passing many cars in the way.

    Special mention to Schumacher, who seemed to get the better of the Mercedes in these last few races. Given the right car, he’d be up there, at least at this stage of the season.

  10. In the whole weekend, Hamilton was faultless. He put up a good lap in qualifying and in the race he was perfect. But, Perez made one of the best performances of the whole year and in my opinion he was the best driver on track. I can’t imagine what he and Kobayashi could have done in Spa if the crash wouldn’t have happened.

  11. It’s between the 3 men on the podium, but I will go for Perez. That man rocks!

    1. noticeable is P5 for Raikkonen. Lotus wasn’t competitive during whole weekend

      1. I agree. Their car just didn’t perform and Kimi’s fifth place required a perfect drive. He was flawless just as he was in Spa last week.

        I picked Perez though, a perfect race for him. Hamilton benefited a lot from Alonso’s problems in quali. I’m not even sure if he had win without that.

      2. Agreed. Raikkonen certainly did a good job to haul the Lotus in its less competitive tracks (Spa and Monza, due to the weaker Renault engine) into a podium and a strong points finish.

        Good to note that he’s now 3rd in the championship without a win… Just wow. :O Awesome stuff from the Iceman :D

        1. due to the weaker Renault engine

          I saw that Lotus was the fastest car on the speed trap, far from the “weaker Renault engine”

          1. Everyone within a Renault-powered team has been saying the Renault is weaker than the Mercedes for years, do a quick google search. I think, but I am not 100% sure, that Raikkonen has made a similar comment this year already. Top speed does not necessarily equate to having the best engine. The Lotus is just very slippery through the air with much less drag and downforce than a Red Bull.

        2. I was just thinking that. To be 1 point off Hamilton (3 Wins) in the WDC, without having a win so far is absolutely remarkable. It says a lot about the consistency factor that F1 drivers talk about so much.

          Alonso has been operating the same way this season, picking up points wherever possible. Although he’s been fortunate enough to sneak in wins when they’re available.

  12. Have to pick Lewis Hamilton, fast all weekend and managed the race faultlessly.

  13. i think too many people vote for their driver of the race. perhaps these polls should be re-titled for better accuracy…?

    1. @sato113 you mean that you’re also suprised to see the Okay driver of the week end which was superb for the last 10 laps dominating the poll ? Memory is short … very short
      *Read this many time increasing the degre at each time*

      1. @jeanrien sorry i don’t understand you’re comment.

  14. Lewis, very smooth.

  15. Hamilton is the Driver of the Weekend for me. Controlled that race.

    Driver of the DAY is Perez. He started behind Alonso and still beat him to second. The main is a future race winner and WDC contender for sure.

    1. On his route to the second place helped the fact he avoided having to pass a couple of competitive cars, Button, Vettel, Webber so that might have not been the second place otherwise. Remember Alonso got stuck behind Vettel for about 10 laps and got his car damaged, changed his tyres only once.
      I only wish Massa was in that Sauber on Sunday for his boost of self confidence. I am not worried about Perez, he is very strong driver/charachter and I am sure he is a future WDC when things fall in place.

  16. I’ve never bought into the story that Perez wasn’t ready for Ferrari and now I’ve sussed it.

    We saw today that Ferrari need someone like Massa who won’t take points away from Alonso, Alonso can win the title on his own. Perez has proved his year that he’s an absolute superstar, he is World Championship winning material but he can’t get into Ferrari until Alonso has won a title.

    It’s not that Perez isn’t ready for Ferrari, Ferrari isn’t ready for Perez.

    1. I absolutely agree with this comment. I always spoken out how a clear No. 2 driver makes Alonso better. Sole responsibility makes him better. In-team fighting does not. See his McLaren spell. I think if he would have driven half as good in 2007 as he does since Hockenheim 2010, he would have been world champion in that year as well. Exaggerating, but you get the point.

      When he finds his team mate is lacking something in pace, he, Alonso, clearly has, he suddenly starts to own that team mate. Look how nervous he was when it seemed destined Trulli will be in prime form in 2004. Alonso slammed into the barriers in Monaco being unable to find a way through. Trulli won. Once Trulli lost it a bit, Alonso was there and did not look back. Same with Fisico. At first it was unclear if Alonso was clearly better. Fisico won the season opener in Australia in 2005 and went well during the next couple of races. Then Alonso began to dominate and the more he beaten Fisico, the less of a threat the Italian was. Piquet was a no brainer, the weakened Massa neither, and his Minardi teammates were below par as well.

      Look what happened with Hamilton. Alonso has not beaten Hamilton comprehensively, in fact Hamilton won the intra-team fight, won over the team and Alonso had to go, he was completely separated by Brazil. Alonso spun at Fuji under pressure, throwing away a possible win and a championship. That’s how things go, when he has a world-class teammate.

      In this sense, I think he is a bit similar to Senna. Senna was at his best during his years with Berger. Senna was a different class entirely by 1993, see Donington or Montreal, was a contender with a below par Lotus in 1986 and 1987 alongside Dumfries and Nakajima, whereas he often lost his composure when he had Prost as a teammate.

  17. I had a look on JamesAllenOnF1.com before voting here, and there it was a landslide for Perez (currently 1861 out of 3079 votes), with Alonso and Hamilton a distant second and third with 427 and 417 votes respectively. I agree that Perez drove a fantastic race with many fine overtaking manouevres, yet it still puzzles me how he did it. Much has been made over his reverse strategy, but would he only have finished 8th if he had started on the mediums and finished on the primes? I wonder whether Sauber have any idea why, on a couple of occasions this year, Perez has been able to get so much out of his car and tyres – and sometimes not.

    I voted for Hamilton, though. He was on it all weekend, despite the distractions and the dragging contract negotiations which clearly bothered him. His race was superb, although Hamilton’s consistency was of course less spectacular than Sergio’s overtaking. To pre-empt comments along the lines of “then why didn’t you vote for Vettel last year?!”, I did in fact vote for Sebastian on quite a number of occasions last year, and besides, I’m nowhere near tired of seeing Hamilton win from pole yet…

    1. I think really you are pointing out the nature of this season not to mention the nature of DotW. Even the teams don’t know why on one occasion they are so hooked up and on another they are not, such is their difficulty in predicting these tire’s behaviour. It’s a very fine line between nailing the combination of setup vs. ambient and track temp. and how said combination is going to affect tire performance throughout the race. You could ask the same question of many teams and drivers this year. eg. Rosberg winning with conviction in China and not threatening to win since. Same guy has on several occasions seemed to be nowhere in the race and yet at some point gets hooked up, pulls off some fast laps of the race, and ends up in not too bad a spot by the final lap considering where he looked to be at mid race.

      Might I assume James Allen’s poll was for driver of the race? I think many would give the nod to Perez for that, and many have here too, even though it is for driver of the weekend. I think in general folks look for someone who did something more unexpected, and Sauber not being a top team means that Perez did something ‘more special’ than did a proven WDC in a top car who had pole. Taking the whole weekend into account, I think the nod unquestionably should go to LH.

      1. @robbie, indeed James Allen’s poll was for the race.

    2. @adrianmorse Three points I’d make about comparing that poll with this one:
      1. That poll is for driver of the “day”, not weekend;
      2. That poll is restricted to a limited selection of drivers (so if you were paying close attention to Charles Pic’s race and thought he drove a blinder, tough!);
      3. F1 Fanatic polls are limited to registered users to reduce the possibility of the results being unduly interfered with, e.g. by users of a forum supporting one driver or team sending thousands of voters to skew the results. That does not appear to be the case with this poll.

      1. w.r.t. to point 3, I refreshed the page to check an updated vote count, and could vote again…

        1. @adrianmorse I didn’t think it would be that easy to manipulate, but there you go.

      2. @keithcollantine
        Maybe you should think about adding two more polls each week:
        1. For the Driver of the Race (for the people that can’t fully understand the title of the Driver of the WEEKEND poll)
        2. For the Fan Boys and Haters (just so they can vote for whoever they like without justification)

        Just a thought, every time we have a DOTW poll it gets into a debate about better in the race vs better all weekend

        I voted for Hamilton for smashing the weekend, pole may or may not have been different if Alonso didn’t have the issue in Q3, Lewis had to battle through the mental strain of being hounded about his future and still kept his cool and performed solidly for the three days.
        Big shout out for Perez for his race performance – he definitely pulled a rabbit out the hat on Sunday!

        1. @mcgregski

          Just a thought, every time we have a DOTW poll it gets into a debate about better in the race vs better all weekend

          I think ultimately you have to look at the result and how they got there.

          For example, did Perez start outside the top ten because he fluffed his qualifying lap, or did he start there because he spent more of his practice time working on his race set-up instead of his qualifying set-up?

  18. Difficult to say. In the end i picked Alonso because he was excellent and only missed out on pole due to a damaged roll-bar. Despite starting tenth he was 6th by the second lap and passed other cars. He tried a brave move on Vettel and was catching Massa before the team order came. The fact he started so far behind gave him no shot for victory and his strategy put him behind Perez.
    Perez was good on the Sunday but his strategy helped. he must have had his reasons for a disappointing qualifying, maybe preparing for the great race he had.
    Hamilton was surely quick but also lucky as to what happened to Alonso. Massa was never going to challenge him and he built his lead at the start.
    The top 3 were all very close though. Massa was good as well, probably one of the best races he’s had in two years, but obviously the top 3 were better.

  19. Perez will obviously win this one, with Alonso registering another ‘podium’ here in this poll series. I think Hamilton will get third, or possibly second with Alonso third.

    This wihout checking the current results aaand…

    1. …yes, Hamilton is ahead of Alonso. I’d argue with this. Neither put a foot wrong all weekend, but I think Alonso had a harder job, because he had to overtake more, and complete more laps with 100% concentration.

      I’m an Alonso fan, but I think this is a valid argument nevertheless.

      1. Yeah I see your point, but I think it is safe to say that all the drivers (including LH on Sunday) need to concentrate 100% at all times for every lap, no matter their situation, and especially with the amount they have to ‘read’ the tires these days, poised for the cliff affect to hit. It’s a shame FA was held back in quali by a technical issue and I find that clouds the debate. ie. he was better than his car on Saturday. On Sunday he, and FM, showed that the Ferrari is no slouch, and I certainly don’t think of it as a fourth fastest car as has been suggested in recent weeks. You are right that FA had to overtake more, and unfortunately the difficulty of that gets clouded with DRS and the chance that some cars one might approach from behind are on ‘cliffed’ tires.

  20. GROJEAN here.

    1. Not a single foot wrong all weekend, got the best out of it @jcost? :)

  21. Difficult choice Hamilton was good during the last stage of qualifying but what if Alonso hadn’t had a car problem, would he still have been in pole? Massa did well beating Alonso but the same comment applies. During the race Hamilton managed the situation and his lead well but I wonder if Perez would have caught him if there had been a few more laps. In the end I went for Perez his strategy and tyre management were excellent and his lap times at the end were impressive.

  22. perez was the best in the race, based on the number of positions he made up through perfect tyre management, however hammy was the driver of the weekend.

  23. This race is kind of similar to the last race. Winner wins from pole, guy in 2nd makes a dazzling drive passing multiple drivers on-track and providing great entertainment.

    If people are fair, Hamilton should win this as Button did previously. If Perez wins, I am afraid we have to conclude that Vettel and Hamilton have too little fanboys compared to Button and Perez.

  24. I considered voting Perez. But Hamilton was just supreme, whereas Perez qualified behind his team mate. I also find it hard to believe that Hamilton wasn’t controlling his pace at the end.

  25. It´s all between Perez and Hamilton, a close call but I voted in Perez simply because it is much harder to do the race he did in a Sauber and get 2nd than to win with a Mclaren that is dominating at the moment.
    Alonso has to be mentioned also, those first laps were phenomenal.

  26. Okay, Hamilton didn’t storm through the field like Perez did, but he didn’t have to.

  27. Voted Hamilton, but Perez is clearly going to win despite it being ‘driver of the WEEKENDNOT ‘driver of the RACE

  28. Hamilton said he was “cruising”for parts of the race in the post race press conferance.
    It’s hard to vote for someone with the luxury of cruising when Checo faught tooth and nail to make his strategy work and pulled off some of the most impressive overtakes in the process.
    Alonso, was 2nd best for meanother stellar drive hampered only by a mechanical issue in Q3.

    Checo for the win in singapore :)

    1. He was ‘cruising’ because he could, having got pole on the Saturday !

      Therefore for me he is driver of the weekend, however driver of the race – Perez

  29. Perez certainly deserves driver of race, Sunday only. He wasn’t that notable in Practice or qually especially. It was close for me between Lewis & Fernando, but based purely on results I gave my vote to Lewis.

  30. As crazy as it sounds a Vettel supporter to back Hamilton, he should win DOTW. Perez drove a corker on Sunday BUT got outqualified by Kobayashi and therefore had that strategy option available.

    Hamilton DOTW
    Perez DOTR

    Like many of Vettel’s wins, it was pole to flag- just because it isn’t exciting doesn’t mean it wasn’t good.
    Respect the performance, not the show!

  31. I picked Hamilton as he was one of the few who did a solid job all weekend. He did the job he needed to do in the first half of the race by pulling away from the rest of the field, and because of that, Perez didn’t have enough laps to catch him.

  32. Perez. He looks like having solved the Pirellis’ mistery, and when there is nobody ruining his races wih massive crashes (Maldonado or Grosjean especially) he shows he MUST be in a greater team. Sauber, indeed, is bringing him the right tool and I’d like so much to see him as the next new winner this year.

  33. Hamilton.
    I’m quite surprised by the result so far, I thought that F1 fanatics were starting to appreciate pole to flag wins, especially in this close championship.
    Lewis had everything under control, he was easily faster than his team mate in quali and he managed the race nicely.

  34. Although Perez’s drive was outstanding I voted for Fernando Alonso. The sole reason being he made good progress through the field and although he couldn’t stop Perez passing him and couldn’t keep up with Hamilton I just felt that he did very well given the fact he has had many a problem during the weekend and the loss of telemetry bugs that plagued them. Also since the team said that he picked up damage from the Vettel incident and couldn’t ride the kerbs made the drive from 10th to 3rd even more impressive.

  35. Robert Kubica :)

  36. Hamilton is driver of the WEEKEND.

    Perez was brilliant on Sunday, but he failed to get into Q3 on the Saturday.

    I wish people would look at the whole GP weekend instead of just the race. There, I said it.

  37. I voted perez. on reflection when the question is driver of the weekend, then actually it should prob be hamilton or alonso both of whom were quick all weekend and drove perfect races.

    I just want to put a word in for kimi though. The lotus was clearly not quick this weekend. However, he squeezed into q3 and then drove a faultless race making a very long second stint 1 stop strategy world and beating both mercedes who had a faster package by far.

    He’s really been impressive this come back year and whilst i can’t see him winning the wdc without winning a couple of races, he’s exctracted excellent results at both spa and monza where the car clearly wasn’t at the races.

    If they go back to their germany / hungary pace in the closing part of the season then anything could happen.

    1. *world above should read work

  38. Hamiton was the driver of the day he never put his foot wrong from start to end.

  39. I’m Alonso fan, nontheless even when he has pull out an incredible performance again i still think Perez was the man.

  40. As much as I would love to vote for Hamilton or Alonso, I don’t remember anyone voting for Vettel when he used to do this lights to flag run before it was cool nor voting for Vettel when his anti-rollbar failed in Monaco 2010. Why break the trend, went with Checo

    1. @ridiculous

      As much as I would love to vote for Hamilton or Alonso

      Well why didn’t you then? There was literally nothing stopping you.

  41. Driver of the weekend? It’s a close contest between Hamilton and Alonso.
    Driver of the race itself? That’s even closer between Hamilton, Alonso and Perez.

    I’m going to go for Hamilton on this occasion. It’s not a biased decision either, as I support all three of them to varying degrees. However, I feel with the extreme distractions of losing a close family member recently (his aunt) and the difficult contract negotiations looming over his head; delivering the sublime; controlled, and utterly dominant performance that he did, was just an exceptional feat. It didn’t matter who was in second at any given time; be it Massa, Button or Perez, he always did just enough to maintain his lead comfortably. Once it was above the four second mark, it never once dropped below that. He also aced the start; something that’s been a frequent issue for him in the last few races.

    Perfection.

  42. For me it’s either Hamilton or Alonso so I won’t vote on this one. We can only wonder what kind of epic battle we would have if Alonso hadn’t been cursed with technical gremlins on Friday and Saturday. Lewis was cool, fully in control and Fernando made fantastic comeback, fighting his way through the reigning champion, among others. This time I don’t mind he benefited from team orders, because the situation in the championship has never been clearer. He’s going for the title, Massa has never been near it this season. Felipe’s goal is to keep his Ferrari seat, thus helping Alonso plays to his advantage. Both of them benefited from the situation.

    Of course Perez did some very good driving there, but his remarkable charge in the end has to be attributed to the tire advantage. Strategy masterpiece, not driving masterpiece.

    1. his remarkable charge in the end has to be attributed to the tire advantage.

      Then perhaps Pic was the driver of the weekend. All those who finished above him have an obvious car advantage.

  43. Perezzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

  44. I feel I should vote for Maldonado here, you have to give the man credit, he didn’t actually crash this weekend!

    I actually voted for Perez – without him, the race would have been unwatchable.

  45. I didn’t vote for Button last weekend and I won’t vote for Hamilton now, based on the same logic / arguments, to be honest. McLaren simply delivers now both as a team and as a technical package.

    As much credit Hamilton may deserve, I somehow still feel more might be due to Perez and Alonso, overperforming in those cars. Both had brilliant runs on Sunday and made up for pretty much everything that was exciting in that race.

    So…of the two I have to hand it to Perez again.
    Notable mentions should include Massa, Schumacher and Ricciardo.

  46. Monza driver of the day have to be #Perez,but gutsy drive by #Alonso.This race may help him to win his 3rd WC!

  47. Perez for me. He was on it from the word go with his race and used the C31’s strengths to it’s full potential. I had my doubts after qualifying as they weren’t as high in the speed trap as I expected they would be but he delivered and Kobayashi also stuck them in the points. Admittedly he wasn’t really making waves in qualifying but harking back to that speed trap data again makes me think that perhaps that was the intention, knowing they could benefit from high temps on tyres they could charm into working for them.

    Hamilton of course drove very well and was totally faultless. Hounourable mention to Massa for keeping in touch when his tyres were starting to go and he didn’t seem to choke like he did in Montreal where I remember he was also running quite high when he kicked out the back end of his F2012.

  48. Perez, really? Weekend? Lewis topped p2, p3, quali and the race and all in the second fastest car according to Peter Sauber

    1. Yes, Mclaren has a great car, the second fastes?….. they hace the car of the year, and they’re loosing constructors and drivers….

      1. “fastest?…they have” sorry

  49. Unfortunately for alonso he wasn’t able to show his speed due to the mechanical failure. Alonso was the fastest in q1,q2 and was slower than hamilton in p3 by 0.001 . So to me alonso would have won the race, unforthnately we will never know. Also for all hamilton’s fans enjoy it while it lasts. Ferrari have the biggest upgrade for the f2012 since barcelona for the next race. I doubt mclaren have anything close to it. Forza alonso and forza ferrari

  50. I don’t know about anyone else, but I’d love to hear a translation of what ALO said in Italian on the podium. I know it probably won’t be much more than what he said in English, but whatever he was saying made that crowd listen and go very quiet, before erupting again when he finished!

    1. He finished he’s speech with “We will never surrend, avanti!”

  51. @Keith you really should consider renaming this poll to “Best driver of the Race” regarding this whole discussion

    1. sorry. I mean @Keith Collantine

  52. I was so glad Lewis won this one (and quite gutted for Button, the only chance for a decent fight at the front and Vettel, the only chance for a decent top gun comeback). But I hardly ever voted for Vettel in his dominants fests and really, that is what Lewis produced. It is great, it shows huge talent to do it so effortlessly, but this time I have to go with Perez. This was such a brilliant drive ! Mature, fast, composed. He might be slightly flattered by his car’s tyre conservation and the 11th man advantage, but that remained a great drive not everyone can produce. (look at Webber’s race !) And yes, he wasn’t on top form all week end, Koba went faster than him in quali, but there you have it : the race outshines the week end, especially when you climb 10 places through a tight talented field with a midpack car.

  53. Monza is special for every driver. Because of the nature of the track, the tradition and the tifosi.

    All this brings a tremendous amount of pressure for all drivers, let alone Ferrari drivers.

    And then you have technical problems.

    So here you are, at Monza, the tifosi are going beserk and your car has problems…. Meaning your engineer cannot coach you like you’re used to, but he still can use the radio to point out that your teammate is on fresher tyres…

    Think about being in that situation.

    At 330 km/h.

    Your salary, your contract, your family, your honor, your pride…

    Just finishing the race only one position behind his teammate in those circumstances, makes my vote going to Felipe Massa.

  54. Can’t see how Alonso can be voted for driver of the weekend. Perez, in a worse car, outdrove the two-time world champion to claim second and, given a few more laps, quite possibly the win.
    Perez was most definitely driver of the race. No denying that. However, this is driver of the weekend, and Hamilton dominated most of practise and qualifying and took an excellent win from pole position. I can’t see how it can be anyone other than Hamilton for driver of the weekend.

  55. Strange to find out 0% of people voted on D’Ambrosio, at least i know someone voted on D’Ambrosio, he did a nice job having thousands of miles less running than others.

    1. @ukfanatic There were three votes for D’Ambrosio, 0.46%.

  56. Sorry, can’t agree with the majority who say Perez. If it was only the race I’d say yes but on a saturday he’s been beaten by his team-mate. There was only 1 driver who had a perfect weekend in Monza and it was Hamilton

  57. Hamilton delivered.

  58. Hamilton had a perfect car no doubt about it

  59. Without a doubt it must be Lewis Hamilton. Fantastic qualifying and fantastic race. Didn’t see much of him in the race and this shows how dominant he was.

    Driver of the race must have been Sergio Perez but he was outqualified by quite a large margin by Kobayashi so I’m afraid I can’t vote for him as driver of the weekend.

  60. This was a difficult DOTW to choose. I though Lewis, Fernando and Sergio were all strong in different areas. Lewis was strong throughout the weekend.. during FP sessions, quali and the race… but then again he also had the fastest car this weekend, so it was expected of him
    Sergio dropped the ball in quali again but was the most stellar driver on Sunday. Executed a different strategy perfectly and did a great amount of overtaking to work it up to P2.
    Fernando was stellar up unto Q3 where through no fault of his own he had to start in P10. On Sunday, he was absolutely awesome at the start of the race as he had made up 4 positions by the beginning of lap 2. A stellar drive to recover to P3 and take a podium finish.

    Tough choice .. but I went with Fernando in the end.

  61. Michael Brown (@)
    11th September 2012, 11:44

    Why are people voting for Sergio Perez? He was the best in the race clearly but Alonso and Hamilton had the best weekends. It’s like when Raikkonen was the driver of the weekend because everyone hates Vettel and Raikkonen had one chance to overtake him.

  62. The tyre rules makes F1 racing a lottery.
    Perez had a great drive no doubt, but had teams ahead not been forced to start with the same tyres they qualified with, I very much doubt he would have got so far in the race.
    If he was this good with making up positions and conserving his tyres, how come he is also inconsistent across a whole season, on that same quality.
    Did he do the same thing and Barcelona, how about Valencia or Germany?
    No doubt he is a skillful driver, but the conditions make some things possible.
    The irony of it is, had he started from 5th position, he may have ended the race out of the points.
    So are we saying he planned to qualify out of the top 10 and use this strategy to win the race?

    1. I don’t think he was “planning to qualify out of the top ten”.

      But I do think may have prioritised his race set-up over his qualifying set-up during practice. As I mentioned in an early comment, Paul di Resta suspects as much.

  63. Hamilton drove superbly throughout the weekend and ran a flawless race. We don’t know how much he had in reserve, but my guess is he’d have easily held off Perez if he’d got closer. We didn’t see much of him because the focus was on the battles behind, but he didn’t seem to put a foot wrong.

    Perez = 2nd choice. A great drive – he must have enjoyed that charge!

  64. Driver of the Weekend – Lewis Hamilton
    Driver of the race – Sergio Perez

  65. My top three drivers of the weekend were Perez, Alonso and Hamilton.

    The fact that Perez didn’t get into Q3 allowed him to have a different tyre strategy in the race to most of the other drivers which helped him in the race, if he had reached Q3 and qualified in a similar position to his teammate I don’t think he would have had quite as good a race which shows the problems with the tyre rules regarding the top 10.

    But he still put in a great performance in the race to achieve another podium I don’t think most fans would be surprised if he managed a victory before the end of the season.

    If Alonso hadn’t had a car problem in qualifying he probably would have got pole and challenged for the victory, however he put it behind him and put in yet another great drive in the race and extending his lead in the drivers championship.

    Despite Hamilton’s recent problems off the track he didn’t appear to make any mistakes in the car all weekend and was never really troubled in the race.

    1. Would have been interesting to see where Alonso would have finished had he Qualified better.
      Of interest also is if Perez could have been able to catch Button had he not suffered a car failure, because I very much doubt he could have done so.

  66. Voted Alonso, but Hamilton and Perez were equal to him and Alonso is my favorite. I think everyone on the podium had a great race weekend.

    Hamilton was dominant, give him a fast car, a clear track and I don’t think anyone can catch him.

    Perez drove brilliantly and made use of the best strategy. Maybe Sauber should opt out of Q3 and always run one-stops going hard to soft, seems to pay them dividends every time it happens. On a side note, I think it is a shame that Kobayashi out qualified him but was hamstrung by the antiquated Q3 tire restrictions. I like Kobayashi and I think he can reach the podium this year with a little luck.

    Alonso drove brilliantly coming from P10 to P3 on the non-preferred strategy. Could have challenged for race win if he started P11.

  67. Perez
    Alonso
    Hamilton
    In that order

    Perez and Alonso showed starting 10th and 12th can make podium

    Question is wht did the driver between them Webber not manage to do the same

    Special mention to Senna and Ricciardo who have been driving pretty good the last two races

  68. Oh….

    For those complaining about Perez strategy making it easy for him…..every driver has same opportunity

    I know the q3 tyres rule isn’t the best but that’s the rules

    I’m surprised Webber didn’t start on the hard tyre which would’ve been my pick on a fast short race with small pit lane starting from 11th

    Hardly any chance to win championship like that

    Alonso is showing how you can have an average weekend and still drive the pants of that car and extend points in championship

    1. Qualifying was extremely tight, and ham didn’t put his three sector best times together in Q3 and was lucky ALO had a failure, in the race Massa / button fight gave him the lead, ALO and Per did had a good Q even nothing now means 10 places but passing Schumacher, Raikonen, Vettel, Webber, Rosberg, Di Resta, Masa, Alonso, and some others and then again a second time was definitely worth more than a lucky Q which result in an easy drive “cruising”

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