Vote for your Singapore GP driver of the weekend

2012 Singapore Grand Prix

Start, Singapore Grand Prix, 2012Which F1 driver had the best race weekend in Singapore?

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

Singapore Grand Prix driver-by-driver

Red Bull

Sebastian Vettel – Topped all three practice sessions but was mystified at his inability to turn a lap quick enough for pole position in Q3. From third on the grid he picked off Maldonado at the start and was perfectly placed to claim victory when Hamilton retired.

Mark Webber – Singapore seems not to be a favourite track of Webber’s. He qualified seventh and was using a three-stop strategy to try to gain ground when he was compromised by the appearance of the safety car. Spent the final laps trying pass Ricciardo without success. After the race he was penalised 20 seconds for putting all four wheels off the track while passing Kobayashi. Though he had clearly violated the rules, Webber was perhaps unfortunate as he had little time to decide whether to let Kobayashi re-pass him.

McLaren

Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, Singapore, 2012Jenson Button – Lagged behind Hamilton in qualifying by a similar margin to that which separated the Red Bull drivers. Followed Vettel past Maldonado at the start and was able to run slightly longer in his first stint. This might have helped him later on had the safety car not appeared.

Lewis Hamilton – Snatched pole position off Vettel and maintained a lead of one to two seconds before a gearbox glitch put him out. The team first noticed a problem with the gearbox during the race and Hamilton reported difficulties shifting before it failed.

Ferrari

Fernando Alonso – Decided the high-downforce rear wing brought by the team was not an improvement and didn’t use it. He made an unusually poor start from fifth and was beaten to the first corner by Di Resta, but quickly re-passed the Force India. He seriously tested Maldonado’s defences but didn’t manage to find a way past the Williams. The demise of Maldonado and Hamilton’s retirement elevated him to third.

Felipe Massa – Never looked like making it into Q3 – he was over three-quarters of a second slower than his team mate. Picked up a puncture in the first corner melee when he was hit by Petrov, but the safety car brought him back into contention. Made an arms-and-elbows pass on Senna at turn 13 and complained he had been blocked but the stewards didn’t share his view. He later overtook Ricciardo and finished eighth.

Mercedes

Michael Schumacher – Fell behind Rosberg on the first lap, then ended his 300th start in a violent crash after the first safety car period, slamming into the back of Vergne at turn 14. He initially accounted for the crash saying: “I was braking but the deceleration was not as strong as it usually would be”. But the stewards noted he accepted responsibility and gave him a ten-place penalty for the next race.

Nico Rosberg – Like Schumacher he elected not to set a time in Q3 to save tyres. He incurred damage at the first corner which cost him some downforce. However he was able to pit for soft tyres during the first safety car period and run to the end for fifth place, his best result since Monaco.

Lotus

Kimi Raikkonen – Lotus made extensive changes to their car on Friday night which improved its performance, but Raikkonen wasn’t able to get through to Q3. Spent much of the race stuck behind Schumacher until the Mercedes driver crashed out. Then Grosjean let him by into sixth, but he couldn’t progress further. “You cannot overtake,” he complained afterwards.

Romain Grosjean – Out-qualified Raikkonen after returning from his ban, but a scruffy Q3 lap left him eighth. He probably would have beaten his team mate had the team not ordered him to move aside: “It?s never easy as a driver to let someone past ?ǣ even if it is your team-mate,” he said, “but we need to be intelligent in these circumstances”.

Force India

Paul di Resta, Force India, Marina Bay, 2012Paul di Resta – Force India showed good pace from early in the weekend and Di Resta capitalised, putting his car sixth on the grid. He may regret not being firmer with Alonso at the first corner given that he ultimately finished behind the Ferrari. Even so, fourth was a career-best result.

Nico Hulkenberg – Knew his car was good enough for Q3 but missed the cut. That doomed him to spending the first part of the race stuck behind Schumacher and Raikkonen. After they pitted he was able to run long on his soft tyres, but gambling on staying out when the safety car was first deployed ultimately compromised his race. Picked up a puncture while trying to pass Kobayashi and ended up 14th.

Sauber

Kamui Kobayashi – Was eliminated in Q1 after struggling with his car, with similar problems to those he experienced in Hungary. Senna and Glock passed him at the start and it took Kobayashi until lap eight to get past the Marussia. A clash with a Force India ruined his race: “I couldn?t avoid touching Nico Hulkenberg,” he said. “There was no space to go. For me it was a race incident. Nico said sorry when we met after the race; apparently he had oversteer, I lost my front wing and had to pit.”

Sergio Perez – Said the team’s latest upgrade had failed to deliver the expected downforce gains. Having qualified 14th, he chose the usual Sauber gambit of starting on the harder tyres. But the safety car appearance neutered any advantage this offered – he finished 11th on the road and was promoted to the final point by Webber’s penalty.

Toro Rosso

Daniel Ricciardo – Ricciardo started on super-soft tyres and was able to make his second and final pit stop after the safety car appeared. He was eighth when the race resumed and although Massa passed him he had more success keeping Webber behind.

Jean-Eric Vergne – Still nursing a sore neck from his Monza acrobatics, the last thing Vergne needed was another crash. He was running tenth when Schumacher took him out, but the safety car had already scuppered his strategy anyway.

Williams

Pastor Maldonado, Williams, Singapore, 2012Pastor Maldonado – Maldonado produced the surprise of qualifying, planting his Williams on the front row. He avoided causing the widely-predicted first corner apocalypse, though he did lose places to Vettel and Button. Withstood pressure from Alonso but hydraulic failure meant his redemptive performance ultimately ended in disappointment.

Bruno Senna – Hit the barriers a total of three times in practice and qualifying. But he was in with a chance of claiming a point when he suffered an alarming technical fault – his team told him to pull over and jump out of the car without touching the ground in case of a KERS problem. On top of that, his car broke down in the pre-race parade as well. A weekend to forget.

Caterham

Heikki Kovalainen – Unusually he was out-qualified by Petrov. The team dropped the ball on strategy as well, not pitting him during the first safety car and then switching him to super-softs, which had to be changed again before the end of the race. Disastrously, that let rivals Marussia beat them to a precious 12th place finish.

Vitaly Petrov – Hit Massa at the first corner (“I?ve already apologised to him as we get on well”) and had to pit for a new front wing. The safety car offered him a chance to get back into the race but he was sent from his pit box with a loose wheel nut and had to be pushed back to his garage.

HRT

Pedro de la Rosa – Finished a lapped 17th: “The last five laps never seemed to end because I had no tyres left and I started to lose ground on Glock and Pic and Kobayashi, Kovalainen and Hulkenberg, who were flying, passed me like nothing.”

Narain Karthikeyan – Out-qualified de la Rosa for the second race in a row but had fallen behind his team mate when he hit the wall at turn 18: “I went on the dirty part of the track and the car didn?t turn which resulted in me going into the wall.”

Marussia

Timo Glock, Marussia, Marina Bay, 2012Timo Glock – Glock had a scare when he clouted the wall early on: “The rear tyre pressures came up a bit too much and I overshot the car in turn 19 and hit the wall. In the first moment I thought the race was over and I realised that the toe was really out; I had to change my driving style and, actually, changed everything that I could do to keep the car on track.” Glock pitted for soft tyres shortly before the first safety car period and stayed on them until the end – over half the race distance. Retirements ahead promoted him to 12th which elevates Marussia to tenth in the constructors’ championship.

Charles Pic – Pic was handed a 20-second race penalty and ordered to spend a day assisting an FIA road safety awareness campaign after failing to heed red flags during practice. In the race he did a long final stint on super-soft tyres and finished 16th.

Qualifying and race results summary

Started Gap to team mate Laps leading team mate Pitted Finished Gap to team mate
Sebastian Vettel 3rd -0.57s 59/59 2 1st -67.175s
Mark Webber 7th +0.57s 0/59 3 11th +67.175s
Jenson Button 4th +0.577s 3/22 2 2nd
Lewis Hamilton 1st -0.577s 19/22 1
Fernando Alonso 5th -0.777s 59/59 2 3rd -27.602s
Felipe Massa 13th +0.777s 0/59 3 8th +27.602s
Michael Schumacher 9th -0.12s 0/38 2
Nico Rosberg 10th +0.12s 38/38 2 5th
Kimi Raikkonen 12th +0.732s 13/59 2 6th -0.939s
Romain Grosjean 8th -0.732s 46/59 2 7th +0.939s
Paul di Resta 6th -0.308s 54/59 2 4th -80.35s
Nico Hulkenberg 11th +0.308s 5/59 3 14th +80.35s
Kamui Kobayashi 17th +0.878s 10/59 3 13th +46.522s
Sergio Perez 14th -0.878s 49/59 2 10th -46.522s
Daniel Ricciardo 15th -0.075s 11/38 2 9th
Jean-Eric Vergne 16th +0.075s 27/38 2
Pastor Maldonado 2nd -0.315s 35/36 3
Bruno Senna 22nd +0.315s 1/36 3 18th
Heikki Kovalainen 19th +0.291s 57/57 3 15th Not on same lap
Vitaly Petrov 18th -0.291s 0/57 4 19th Not on same lap
Pedro de la Rosa 24th +0.983s 27/30 3 17th
Narain Karthikeyan 23rd -0.983s 3/30 1
Timo Glock 20th -0.392s 47/59 2 12th -61.007s
Charles Pic 21st +0.392s 12/59 2 16th +61.007s

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="364"]

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2012 Singapore Grand Prix

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140 comments on Vote for your Singapore GP driver of the weekend

  1. Who voted for Kamui??

  2. Juan Pablo Heidfeld (@juan-pablo-heidfeld-1) said on 24th September 2012, 18:24

    Went for Gloc, great drive. The best ever for Marussia

  3. RACERNORRISKI (@racernorriski) said on 24th September 2012, 18:32

    These polls seem more like driver ‘fan’ counts based on Michael Schumacher getting votes for best driver?????????????? Thanks R & R PS or maybe it is family based…

    • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 24th September 2012, 19:02

      @racernorriski

      These polls seem more like driver ‘fan’ counts based on Michael Schumacher getting votes for best driver?

      I don’t agree. At the time of writing the most popular driver on the site the last I checked the numbers (Jenson Button) has 1% of the votes in this poll.

      Have a look at the popularity ratings here and it’s pretty clear there’s no correlation:

      http://www.f1fanatic.co.uk/2012/05/21/button-1000-fans-f1-fantic/

      • AdrianMorse (@adrianmorse) said on 24th September 2012, 19:53

        @keithcollantine, I wonder, do you keep statistics about how often this comment is not required in DOTW polls?

      • Roberto38 said on 25th September 2012, 0:14

        Haha, I can’t believe you seriously think these biased votes represent an objective opinion Keith. So I wonder if Vettel will finally earn his first DOTW this week, you know, since he’s the closest to Alonso in the championship (with an average car for most of the season) and won 2 races this year, including this one. Hmmm.. now what makes this doubtful…

        • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 25th September 2012, 0:20

          As I said I don’t believe there’s much of a correlation between which drivers people support and how they have voted.

          You seem to think that because others don’t share the same opinion as you, that automatically means they’re “biased”. That doesn’t make sense to me. Others are as entitled to their opinions as you are.

          • Roberto38 said on 25th September 2012, 0:57

            They certainly are entitled to an opinion (nothing against that), but that by definition makes these votes subjective (http://www.thefreedictionary.com/subjective). The standard of voting is changed to suit the situation (and driver) and is all over the place. One race a driver gets it because they managed to overtake and go from 10th to 2rd in the race, yet given the same situation (Belgian GP) they are shunned. Oh and at the same time Button, who like Vettel in 2011 had the best car, drove into the distance (Pole/win) got the votes, which was so frowned upon last year. If this is not confirmation of bias, I don’t know what is. Also, let’s look the the DOTW results of the year so far: Ham: 2, Alo: 2, But: 2, Rai: 1. Vet: big fat zero. These are your top 5 championship drivers by points atm. Actually JB is not even in the top 5.

          • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 25th September 2012, 7:52

            You’ve made an assumption that if a driver performs in a certain way (e.g. takes pole position and wins the race) that automatically means they should win the vote. If that were so, then there wouldn’t be much point in having a poll.

            And of course the poll is subjective (no dictionary definition link required, by the way), it’s a question of people’s opinions.

          • Roberto38 said on 26th September 2012, 0:46

            I haven’t made that assumption Keith, I’m only observing the results of the majority of votes. I used that last bit of information only to strengthen my point, which was made in the few sentences above that.

            It’s hard to take something like this poll seriously when prejudice (towards a driver) dictates how people vote. Granted, prejudice/opinion, ridiculous statements/votes are always present in any poll, as demonstrated by votes towards Schumi/Karthikeyanin this race. It just seems to be more extreme in Vettels case, which skews the credibility of the results.

            I’d like to point out that I’m not even a Vettel fan, just dislike the treatment he gets here and like to point it out. If anything, the fact that the majority (going by comments/votes on this site) of people here don’t seem to appreciate his skills make me like him more.

  4. dirgegirl (@dirgegirl) said on 24th September 2012, 18:57

    Toss-up between Vettel, Hamilton, di Resta and Glock. In the end I went for Glock because he had a great weekend in a car which is too slow for his talents – and because I love the idea of an F1 driver who can also put up your scaffolding for you. Speed AND practicality!

  5. JenniKate (@jennikate) said on 24th September 2012, 20:55

    While Vettel, di Resta and Glock all had good weekends, I do think Hamilton out performed them.

    My heart is saying vote Glock! My head is saying Hamilton does deserve it this time – so Hamilton it is.

  6. Vettel was on it all weekend. The only reason he wouldn’t get Driver of the Weekend is because he’s Vettel. Such a shame for him.

  7. James_mc (@james_mc) said on 24th September 2012, 21:29

    Very difficult.

    Hamilton was the stand-out performer from Saturday onwards.

    Vettel drove a strong race, he certainly would have pushed Hamilton close (he did seem to be faster during the second stint until Hamilton retired)

    Di Resta had a very strong performance

    Glock produced a strong result, regardless of the misfortune suffered by others. And managed to do this after completely clattering his car off the wall – what on earth is that Marussia made out of!!

  8. Hard to pick a driver out, it wasnt a great race & we were robbed of seeing a good battle between Vettel & Hamilton. These circuits might look cool & rake in tons of cash but they really make you want to switch off at times. Need more tracks like Spa. Hope new track in Texas breaks the trend of boring new circuits like valencia & singapore. I choose Vettel, after his blip in Q3 he did well to take Maldonado & then reel Hamilton in. Not his fault his car was reliable & finished the race.

  9. paulgilb (@paulgilb) said on 24th September 2012, 22:18

    The article says that Petrov finished ahead of Kovalainen – but he didn’t???

  10. Alex (@smallvizier) said on 24th September 2012, 22:20

    It feels a bit churlish because these are really talented people… but I don’t really feel like anyone deserves the ‘driver of the week’ this time.

    Partly this is because the saftey car. If there hadn’t been one then Vettel might not have managed a two-stopper. On that basis Jenson paced himself perfectly, keeping in touch with Vettel so that when the German made the extra stop, the Brit would have taken the win. We’d have hailed Jenson as a genius and said that Vettel just wasn’t quick enough.

    As it is, Vettel got a free stop and 9 laps behind the safety car, in a shortened race. No more problems with tire wear. Now Vettel’s small speed advantage sees him pull away from Jenson, who can’t keep up.

    So did Vettel walk it, or was Button denied a win? If Hamilton had kept running, how would his tires have held up? Button’s were much newer… it could be that Button would have won even without the retirement (assuming no safety car).

    Basically, I’ve just got no idea how to gauge the top 3′s performance in the race. The same goes for Alonso… he beat the cars he’s expected to beat, as he normally does. But how quick was the Ferrari? For all we know, 3rd place represents a minor miracle.

    In the end I voted for Maldonado. It was a controlled race from him following a good performance in qualifying. Okay, plenty of other drivers can say the same. But this time, I don’t think anyone put up a driver they’ll remember a year from now.

  11. Lin1876 (@lin1876) said on 24th September 2012, 22:58

    Glock for me. He’s always gone well at Singapore, and this was no exception. Running half the race on a set of soft tyres was an amazing feat, but finishing ahead of Kobayashi and Hulkenburg, even considering the problems they hit, in a Marussia was stunning, not to mention the potential consequences for the team!

  12. Hallard (@hallard) said on 24th September 2012, 23:34

    I have to vote for Hamilton here. He had done enough of the race distance while maintaining a gap over Vettel that I think this race most likely would have been his, had the gearbox not failed on him.

    Then again, I fall into that camp where a car failure doesnt preclude me from giving a certain driver my dotw vote. I thought Vettel deserved it in Valencia, too. All in all, I cant bring myself to vote for the driver who eventually won, when they were outperformed by the driver who likely would have won, as was the case in Singapore. Hamilton’s peerless qualifying lap in particular was a thing of beauty and he really couldnt have driven better the whole weekend up until his car failure.

    If I could have two votes the second would be for Di Resta…

  13. Adam Tate (@adam-tate) said on 24th September 2012, 23:37

    Not really an easy weekend to choose, though many will make it out to be. A lot of drivers put in some great heroic performances, whilst others slipped up or had their days ruined by old school mechanical gremlins.

    3 outside choices that deserve a mention have to be Maldonado, Massa and Glock.

    Maldonado for his stunning qualifying and intense battle with Alonso, Massa for the best save of the year, and coming up to 8th from the back of the pack. In a season where he has struggled so much, this was one of his best drives. And last but not least Glock, for showing the kind of gritty talent from back in his Toyota days by dragging his Marussia up to 12th!

    Give that man a better seat!!!

  14. Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 25th September 2012, 0:31

    Definitely the most interesting and finely-poised voted we’ve had in Driver of the Weekend so far. It seems to me this is because a lot of drivers had very good performance but with perhaps one flaw or reason not to vote for them.

    Vettel had a good enough car for pole position but didn’t deliver in qualifying and even ended up getting bumped by Maldonado. But that’s the only mark you can put against him – his race was very good, he was within range of Hamilton, and it’s a pity we didn’t get to see how that battle would have played out.

    That also goes for Hamilton as well. His pole position was excellent and although he didn’t pull away much from Vettel in the opening stages, he seemed able to preserve his tyre longer. But Button was able to go even further and I have to wonder whether he might have come into play had the safety car not appeared when it did.

    Di Resta had a great weekend – he capitalised on his car’s potential when his team mate failed to. But with overtaking at such a premium at Singapore I thought he should have defended more firmly against Alonso at the start. Alonso was never going to force the issue with one eye on the title. Perhaps he didn’t want to become the next Grosjean.

    Glock was in his usual excellent Singapore form for Marussia. He was fortunate to get away with hitting the wall but his long stint was a superb piece of driving and was well-rewarded.

    Maldonado deserves a shout, too – he was excellent in qualifying and although his start wasn’t great he defended very firmly and above all cleanly against Alonso.

    There’s still only 5% in it between the top three as I write this and I’m fascinated to see how this one turns out.

    • @keithcollantine
      Interesting point about di Resta’s start Keith but I’m not exactly sure what you would you have had him do differently.T he rules are now very clear that you can’t push a competitor off the race track, and I think he pushed Alonso as far as he legitamitely could around Turn 2. Maybe he’d have been better going to the outside for Turn 3, but I don’t think he could have expected Maldonado to be so cautious and back Button up in to his path. Anyway, I’d be interested to hear your thoughts.

      • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 25th September 2012, 7:57

        @mhop

        The rules are now very clear that you can’t push a competitor off the race track

        …on a straight not in a corner, and I think di Resta was a bit too generous in the space he gave Alonso in the first turns.

  15. baldgye (@baldgye) said on 25th September 2012, 2:15

    Lewis 100%

    Fastest by half a second in quali, did nothing wrong all weekend managed the gap to Vettel and had the win all but in the bag

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