Which team has the best driver line-up for 2013?

2013 F1 season preview

Pastor Maldonado, Williams, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013With Lewis Hamilton’s headline-grabbing move to Mercedes and an influx of five new drivers, the F1 field has had a shake-up this year.

Red Bull, Ferrari, Lotus and Toro Rosso head into the new season with unchanged driver line-ups, while three of their rivals have all-new squads.

But which team has the best blend of speed, consistency, technical ability and racecraft? Read more about the 22 drivers of 2013 below and vote for which team you think has the best driver line-up.

Red Bull

Sebastian Vettel

Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013Three world championship titles and still only 25 years old. Superb in qualifying, he still makes mistakes but they’re getting rarer as he adds layers of experience to his daunting natural speed.

Sebastian Vettel biography

Mark Webber

Mark Webber, Red Bull, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013Capable of giving Vettel a hard time on his best days, but can blow hot and cold. Particularly effective on ‘proper’ tracks and fearless in wheel-to-wheel combat.

Mark Webber biography

Ferrari

Fernando Alonso

Fernando Alonso, Ferrari, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013Two times a champion already and could have had more since. Consistent and seldom makes mistakes but doesn’t like pressure from team mates.

Fernando Alonso biography

Felipe Massa

Felipe Massa, Ferrari, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013Was a championship contender before his nasty crash in 2009. Has been under the cosh from Alonso ever since but ended last year on a high.

Felipe Massa biography

McLaren

Jenson Button

Jenson Button, McLaren, Jerez, 2013Surprised many by holding his own against Hamilton at McLaren after taking an unlikely title win in 2009. A shrewd judge of mixed weather conditions but often misses that final tenth in qualifying.

Jenson Button biography

Sergio Perez

Sergio Perez, McLaren, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013Making the transition from scrappy insurgent to front-runner. Could be even better at eking out tyre life than Button, but had too many incidents at the end of last year.

Sergio Perez biography

Lotus

Kimi Raikkonen

Kimi Raikkonen, Lotus, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013Impressive comeback last year showed only a little race rustiness. Capable of winning another title even if he lacks that last one percent of commitment.

Kimi Raikkonen biography

Romain Grosjean

Romain Grosjean, Lotus, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013Prone to errors of judgement, particularly on the first lap. Quick enough to trouble Raikkonen and justify a second season but needs to show a new maturity.

Romain Grosjean biography

Mercedes

Nico Rosberg

Nico Rosberg, Mercedes, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013Defeated a past-his-prime Michael Schumacher and scored his first win last year. It’s hard to see him as a championship contender though the same might have been said of his title-winning father.

Nico Rosberg

Lewis Hamilton

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013Possibly F1’s fastest driver. A gutsy racer, though more susceptible to mistakes than his fellow champions and occasionally gets lost on set-up.

Lewis Hamilton biography

Sauber

Nico Hulkenberg

Nico Hulkenberg, Sauber, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013His F1 development was disrupted by losing his Williams seat for reasons not related to his performance. Made rapid progress with Force India and is one to watch this year.

Nico Hulkenberg biography

Esteban Gutierrez

Esteban Gutierrez, Sauber, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013His GP2 record suggests another Grosjean in the making – quick but careless. But he’s patiently racked up the miles in testing and understands the scale of the challenge awaiting him.

Esteban Gutierrez biography

Force India

Paul di Resta

Paul di Resta, Force India, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013Has been solid but unspectacular in his first two years of Formula One and is yet to out-score his team mate over a season, which needs to change this year.

Paul di Resta biography

Adrian Sutil

Adrian Sutil, Force India, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013Shook off his reputation for being crash-prone and had developed into a dependable midfield runner before being dropped at the end of 2011. Has something to prove on his comeback.

Adrian Sutil biography

Williams

Pastor Maldonado

Pastor Maldonado, Williams, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013A first-rate qualifier and capable of the kind of mature race performances that you might think were beyond the same driver who all too often loses his head when battling with a rival.

Pastor Maldonado biography

Valtteri Bottas

Valtteri Bottas, Williams, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013This year’s potential Next Big Thing. Impressed Williams with his performances in practice last year off the back of a GP3 championship victory.

Valtteri Bottas biography

Toro Rosso

Jean-Eric Vergne

Jean-Eric Vergne, Toro Rosso, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013Out-scored his team mate last year but was weaker in qualifying and made some costly errors.

Jean-Eric Vergne biography

Daniel Ricciardo

Daniel Ricciardo, Toro Rosso, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013Showed flashes of promise in the uncooperative STR7 but like his team mate needs to stand out this year to remain part of the Red Bull programme.

Daniel Ricciardo biography

Caterham

Charles Pic

Charles Pic, Caterham, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013Made a name for himself last year by giving the more experienced Timo Glock a hard time, particularly in qualifying. Has a lot on his hands this year as de facto team leader at Caterham.

Charles Pic biography

Giedo van der Garde

Giedo van der Garde, Caterham, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013Has been on the periphery of F1 for years and would have made it in a long time ago if enthusiasm alone made it so. Caterham were pleased with his work with their fledgling GP2 squad in 2012.

Giedo van der Garde biography

Marussia

Max Chilton

Max Chilton, Marussia, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013F1 is a big step up for this well-funded driver who doesn’t have a championship victory from the junior categories on his CV. But Marussia’s problems have given him the opportunity to conduct extra testing.

Max Chilton biography

Jules Bianchi

Jules Bianchi, Marussia, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013Has got more F1 experience than a typical new driver thanks to Ferrari’s patronage and practice runs for Force India. A solid qualifier but racecraft has been a weaker side to his game.

Jules Bianchi biography

Over to you

Which team has the best driver line-up for 2013? Cast your vote below and have your say in the comments.

Which team has the best driver line-up for 2013?

  • Red Bull: Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber (27%)
  • Ferrari: Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa (14%)
  • McLaren: Jenson Button and Sergio Perez (5%)
  • Lotus: Kimi Raikkonen and Romain Grosjean (12%)
  • Mercedes: Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton (37%)
  • Sauber: Nico Hulkenberg and Esteban Gutierrez (1%)
  • Force India: Paul di Resta and Adrian Sutil (1%)
  • Williams: Pastor Maldonado and Valtteri Bottas (2%)
  • Toro Rosso: Jean-Eric Vergne and Daniel Ricciardo (0%)
  • Caterham: Charles Pic and Giedo van der Garde (0%)
  • Marussia: Max Chilton and Jules Bianchi (1%)

Total Voters: 587

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Find the updated driver line-up for 2013 including test and reserve drivers here:

2013 F1 season preview


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287 comments on Which team has the best driver line-up for 2013?

  1. Jimbo (@jimbo) said on 5th March 2013, 10:16

    Another way to look at this would be; which driver pairing do you think would win the constructors title for the team if all teams had the same cars? For me that would be Hamilton & Rosberg.

  2. Roald (@roald) said on 5th March 2013, 10:17

    In my opinion, McLaren has the weakest driver lineup it has had for AT LEAST the last 25 years.

    1988 – Senna & Prost
    1989 – Senna & Prost
    1990 – Senna & Bergher
    1991 – Senna & Bergher
    1992 – Senna & Bergher
    1993 – Senna & Andretti/Hakkinen
    1994 – Hakkinen & Brundle
    1995 – Hakkinen & Mansell/Blundell
    1996 – Hakkinen & Coulthard
    1997 – Hakkinen & Coulthard
    1998 – Hakkinen & Coulthard
    1999 – Hakkinen & Coulthard
    2000 – Hakkinen & Coulthard
    2001 – Hakkinen & Coulthard
    2002 – Raikkonen & Coulthard
    2003 – Raikkonen & Coulthard
    2004 – Raikkonen & Coulthard
    2005 – Raikkonen & Montoya
    2006 – Raikkonen & Montoya
    2007 – Hamilton & Alonso
    2008 – Hamilton & Kovalainen
    2009 – Hamilton & Kovalainen
    2010 – Hamilton & Button
    2011 – Hamilton & Button
    2012 – Hamilton & Button
    2013 – Button & Perez

    In all these years they have had at least 1 definitive star driver in my opinion, and I know a lot of people will disagree with me, but I don’t think Button is on the same level as the likes of Alonso, Hamilton and Vettel. We’ll have to wait and see what Perez will perform like in the McLaren, but I don’t think he’ll be the next big thing. I honestly think McLaren won’t win a title even if they have the fastest car again and don’t make as many mistakes during pitstops as last year, I think their driver lineup is seriously lacking. Just opinion though, don’t kill me for it!

    • Ilanin (@ilanin) said on 5th March 2013, 11:00

      The idea that 1994 Mika Hakkinen was a match for 2013 Jenson Button is pretty laughable. Hakkinen became a champion driver as he matured, but he wasn’t one in 1994.

      And as for the question of whether or not Button can win a world title with the fastest car, I direct you to the 2009 season.

      • Saywhat? said on 6th March 2013, 19:39

        Hakkinen outqualified teammate Senna for the last 3 races of 1993. I’d say that made 1994 Hakkinen more than a match for 2013 Button.

        I direct you to the double diffuser advantage that Brawn had for the first half of the 2009 season. How many races did Button win in the second half of ’09?

        I agree with Roald.

        Looking at the list, I can’t imagine the Senna / Prost combo ever being bettered although Hamilton / Alonso was pretty formidable in 2007.

      • Saywhat? said on 6th March 2013, 19:52

        In fairness to your comment, the bottom line is that Button did win the ’09 title. My point is that he proved barely capable of winning a title with a car that was devastatingly quicker than the rest of the field for the first half of the year.

    • LoreMipsumdOtmElor said on 5th March 2013, 11:26

      *Berger

    • In the early Hakkinen years where Newey was still at Williams, and also 2002 where Raikkonen was inexperienced and Coulthard was a nearly man the lineups were not as strong.

    • Kimi4WDC said on 5th March 2013, 22:57

      When you put it like this, Ron Dennis must be going ballistic inside :)

      Unless Sergio pulls a Raikkonen, it’s going to be a sad year for McLaren.

  3. Rob Wilson (@rob-wilson) said on 5th March 2013, 10:21

    I think Mercedes have the out right fastest line-up but Red Bull have the strongest line up, so they get my vote.

  4. Sean N (@sean-p-newmanlive-co-uk) said on 5th March 2013, 10:25

    So McLaren only have the 4th best pairing? That’s a bit careless…

    • Rob Wilson (@rob-wilson) said on 5th March 2013, 10:55

      Perez is such an un-known that it is showing like this at the moment, there could be a different oppinion amongst us come November..

      • Sean N (@sean-p-newmanlive-co-uk) said on 5th March 2013, 11:23

        I think you’re right. I have a suspicion Perez will beat Button on a regular basis. If he does you’d have to say they are in the top three pairings but the top five are incredibly in my opinion.
        However I’ve underrated Button a few times before. We are set for a very interesting year. Lets hope the cars are close and the best drivers come to the front.

        • Sean N (@sean-p-newmanlive-co-uk) said on 5th March 2013, 11:24

          *I meant incredibly close

        • marsianwalrus (@einariliyev) said on 5th March 2013, 14:02

          Hamilton was not able to beat Button on regular basis. What makes you think that Perez can? He is certainly not faster than Hamilton.

          • Sean N (@sean-p-newmanlive-co-uk) said on 5th March 2013, 15:41

            By regular I meant at least every other race. I don’t think Perez is better than Hamilton. It will be interesting to find out!

            I notice McLaren have now slipped to the 5th best pairing. I think McLarens problem is Button is not as fast as Vettel, Alonso or Hamilton yet he is perceived as team leader. I think if they want to win a championship next year they have to be much more consistent and reliable. That’s where their big gain will come from. Not the Drivers.

  5. raymondu999 (@raymondu999) said on 5th March 2013, 10:40

    While not exactly on the topic of debating what’s the best lineup, I find Button – Perez remarkably reminiscent of Coulthard – Raikkonen. Button being the experienced old head who can be relied on for trustworthy points – whilst Perez is the young hotshot coming in to fill the breach left by a former McLaren ace – both McLaren WDCs, no less (Hakkinen and Hamilton). Perez and Raikkonen both, funnily enough, are graduates of the Sauber Institute of Fine Young Talent. With Button being the most experienced F1 driver on the grid in 2013 (FACT) – I have a feeling that McLaren see him as the old master close to retirement, teaching winning ways to the young padawan in Perez who will be their new future star.

    Perhaps I should start a thread for this in the forums.

    • Kimi4WDC said on 5th March 2013, 23:06

      McLaren might be banking on Perez to turn out to repeat Raikkonen’s McLaren spell, but frankly they are VERY different. We’ll see.

  6. nackavich (@nackavich) said on 5th March 2013, 10:50

    Maybe out on a bit of a limb but I would say Lotus.
    On his day, Raikkonen is a pleasure to watch. I mean he’s brilliant to watch most of the time but hopefully he’ll be able to maintain consistency and succeed in a car that only seems to be getting closer to the top of the tables. Commitment may be seen as an issue but if Lotus give him a fast car it may spark even more determination.
    Grosjean is the big question mark, and if he has matured and manages to stay out of trouble I think his raw pace can trouble Raikkonen – not to mention Hamilton/Vettel/Alonso etc.
    That being said, I do enjoy a good underdog!

    • Tango (@tango) said on 5th March 2013, 14:40

      I voted Lotus too. I believe Raikonnen is a definite top 5 driver and I believe Grosjean has the pace to beat any of those 5 in his good days. Now if those good days become everyday, Lotus would have a brillant lineup.

      I think Lotus have the best potential line up (Grosjean if he matures, Raikonen if he doesn’t get bored), Red Bull and Mercedes have the best proven pair and I’d say Ferrari depends on Massa’s type of year and that McLaren miss out because, not counting the many times I have been wrong about him (and maybe still am), I still don’t think Button is a top 5 on pace and Perez has been so disapointing in the last 5 races.

      Of the midfield, Sauber and Williams definitevily have really nice pairings. Matured fast drivers and rookies with potential. Hulkenberg would enhance or at least wouldn”t alter the quality of any of the top5 pairings if he was to replace driver n°2. FI has a boring one and apart from Bianchi, I believe the lower two teams really have lost driver quality during the silly season.

      • Tango (@tango) said on 5th March 2013, 14:42

        I forgot about Toro Rosso. They are the unknown quantity aren’t they ? Are they both outstanding ? Good ? Bad ? They have the pedigree, but it is impossible to judge !

        • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 5th March 2013, 15:07

          @tango While I was scribbling out an early version of this I thought I’d done all the teams, counted, and realised I’d only got 20 drivers. The anonymous pair I’d overlooked? Force India’s…

          • Tango (@tango) said on 5th March 2013, 15:50

            @keithcollantine , I could have overlooked it too if I hadn’t got the real feeling it is quite a shame to end up with such a pair. It was judged not to be good enough a year ago by FI themselves !

            On my later comment, I feel really bad for forgetting TR drivers ! Following my brief encounter with JEV and having witnessed Riccardo’s boring but crushing F3.5 Monaco victory, I have a soft spot for the pair. It is a real shame they are effectively quite evenly matched in a car which was seldom capable of battling for interesting places with anyone (too far from midfield, not yet at the back).

        • nackavich (@nackavich) said on 6th March 2013, 0:57

          @tango I find the Toro Rosso pair one of the most interesting in the field purely because they’re fairly evenly matched in an ordinary car. Even last year, I’d always make sure I kept an eye on them during a race because their race long tussles were really interesting. Even though Vergne came out ontop in points, Ricciardo was stronger overall I feel, and would’ve beaten JEV if his car hasn’t failed him multiple times.

  7. GeeMac (@geemac) said on 5th March 2013, 11:00

    All of the line ups seem to have flaws, which is actually a good thing because it will hopefully help stop one squad from completely dominating. That said, it’s is probably Vettel/Webber or Hamilton/Rosberg.

  8. AdrianMorse (@adrianmorse) said on 5th March 2013, 11:01

    Like the majority so far, I went for Mercedes. Rosberg is the unknown quantity, but I suspect he will be a faster team mate to Hamilton than Button was. Having said that, I think Rosberg didn’t get the most out of the car on a number of occasions last year. The first two qualifying sessions, when Mercedes was at its best, he didn’t max out, and then during the summer he was sometimes off the pace and getting beaten by Schumacher. I didn’t follow Mercedes that closely, however, so I don’t know if there are any explanations for his no-shows. This year, I think being partnered with Hamilton in what looks to be a pretty quick car might just be the motivation Nico needs to get the best out of himself and the car.

    Let me finally remark that the F1 grid is looking pretty strong again this year. There are many very strong and very promising drivers out there, and despite all the talk of pay-drivers, there are no weak drivers on the grid. I know Van der Garde has gotten some flak for being undeserving of the F1 grid, but if he is the ‘worst’, he is still a driver who won championships prior to F1, and races in GP2.

    • Tango (@tango) said on 5th March 2013, 14:41

      I think Chilton is “the worst”. He would have gained from staying one more year in the lower categories.

    • Robbie (@robbie) said on 7th March 2013, 18:51

      Regarding NR last year, I think he (NR) ‘simply’ suffered from the team and car not being maximized. They couldn’t maximize the tires, they had unreliability issues, MS moreso in the first half and then NR after LH was announced as going to Merc. Why I remember that so well is that Keith et al were starting to remark as to what LH must being thinking about his move to Merc as the season wound down and Merc stopped scoring points. I think NR had 3 reliability issues in the last 5 races, or something like that. And so I also think that will be a big thing to watch with this team as well. Reliability. It did bode well for them that they managed a lot of laps in testing, among the top I think, after initially LH crashing during the initial testing days with his brake pedal going to the floor. It does seem, at least in testing, like they have gotten more reliable, but that’s not racing in anger in hotter climes etc etc. Should be fascinating to see. I think LH is going to have his hands full with NR as a teammate.

  9. Aya (@ayatoybox) said on 5th March 2013, 11:13

    I doubt about championship but Mercedes have the best pair

  10. LoreMipsumdOtmElor said on 5th March 2013, 11:25

    Lotus has the strongest pair (not the the two strongest drivers) and Sauber the weakest apart from the “new” teams.

  11. sumedh said on 5th March 2013, 11:33

    Best pairing: Alonso and Massa
    Best driver line-up : Vettel and Webber.

    In a theoretical world where I could give exact equal chance to both my drivers, I would pick Red Bull’s drivers.
    In a realistic world, I would prefer Ferrari’s drivers.

  12. magon4 (@magon4) said on 5th March 2013, 11:43

    Here’s my ranking for what it’s worth:

    1. Mercedes 9,2
    2. Ferrari 9,1
    3. Red Bull 9,0
    4. McLaren 8,9

    5. Lotus 8,5

    6. Sauber 7,9
    7. Force India 7,9
    8. Williams 7,6
    9. Toro Rosso 7,5
    10. Marussia 7,2
    11. Caterham 7,1

    If I were only to go by perceived talent, upper limit for each driver, It’d look like this:

    1. Mercedes 9,8
    2. Ferrari 9,5
    3. Red Bull 9,5
    4. McLaren 9,4
    5. Sauber 9,3
    6. Williams 9,3
    7. Lotus 9,2
    8. Marussia 8,9
    9. Toro Rosso 8,7
    10. Force India 8,7
    11. Caterham 8,6

    • Jon Sandor (@jonsan) said on 5th March 2013, 15:59

      If I’m reading that correctly, you think that Massa and Rosberg are stronger drivers than Webber? That seems hard to swallow given their respective records. (I’m talking about post crash Massa rather than pre-crash Massa)

      Webber is an above average driver who does not get the level of respect he deserves.

  13. TribalTalker (@tribaltalker) said on 5th March 2013, 11:45

    What a great question we’ve been set by Keith – great captions on the driver pics, and what an interesting range of responses.

    The blurb for Max Chilton made me grin – that must have been hard to write. Understatement at it’s best.

    As for the results graph, well I’m an unabashed fan of Lewis Hamilton but even I wouldn’t say that Mercedes has the strongest pairing. I’m really surprised at how few votes the Lotus drivers are getting – an oversight, surely? Although Kimi can be a grumpy old troll, he’s fast, and so is Grosjean.

    Also re: Giedo van der Garde – there’s a typo in “their fledging GP2 squad in 2012.”

    • Gwan said on 5th March 2013, 15:14

      I hesitated over lotus – I’m still expecting great things from grosjean, but of course there’s still a big question mark. And I’m not sure Rosberg will be able to hold his own, so I went for the tried and true with webber-vettel.

      • Gwan said on 5th March 2013, 15:15

        Oh and Williams also looking interesting. I think my dislike for Maldonado scuppered that though :)

        • TribalTalker (@tribaltalker) said on 5th March 2013, 18:24

          You’re right of course, a mature Grosjean could have huge potential but right now he’s still an unknown quantity. The question is, how much did he learn last year?

          And I forgot to say that I picked the Ferrari pair as the “best” pairing, simply because I think that they could well win the Constructor’s title this year. I have some respect for Massa and (grudging) admiration for Alonso.

  14. Has to be Mercedes. It’s the most down-to-the-ground pairing out there.

    Otherwise, Ferrari are worth a mention if Massa keeps up the form show at the end of 2013 and, personally, if someone managed to kick some sense into Maldonado I can see myself growing quite fond of the Williams pairing, to be honest.

  15. andae23 (@andae23) said on 5th March 2013, 11:59

    The results at the moment (1. Mercedes 2. Red Bull 3. Ferrari) are a bit strange I think. In my opinion, this was a shoot-out between Mercedes, Williams and Sauber. Hamilton is an outstanding driver, but I’m not so sure about Rosberg. Maybe that’s a bit of misfortune for him, as he hasn’t really had the opportunity yet to shine. Then the other two teams: both have a very talented youngster in their team, paired to a promising rookie with already some experience under the belt. It’s really a case of tossing a coin, but eventually I voted Williams.

    Red Bull and Ferrari have the two most decorated/succesful drivers in their line-up, but paired to them are drivers that I don’t normally see fighting for the championship, though both Webber and Massa have once come close. Last year, Massa underperformed once again, and I really doubt if he will pick up the pace again in 2013. Webber on the other hand is.. ok, but nothing special imo. Therefore I find it strange that so many people are voting for these two teams.

    • It seems strange that you mention two teams who have two rookies. You have no idea really how they are going to stack up, they could do great or they could struggle. The poll is the best rather than most promising or most exciting. Maldonado and Hulkenberg are both quick, but also unproven and they are not in the proven best 5 drivers i.e. the five world champions.

      Webber is not going to win the title, but he will be consistently in the top 6. He and Vettel are a very strong team. Therefore I would go 1) Vettel/Webber 2) Hamilton/Rosberg 3) Raikkonen/Grosjean

      • andae23 (@andae23) said on 5th March 2013, 14:40

        I think this is really a matter of how you read the question. I answered the question bearing in mind the appreciation I have for both drivers in the team. Looking at Williams and Sauber: in my opinion, those four drivers are extremely talented. Both teams cannot afford to have a Rosberg/Hamilton line-up as they would require a larger salary than the two drivers they have now, so for their budget I don’t think you could get a better line-up than a 2-years experienced talent plus a promising rookie.

        If the 5 top-teams would have had an extremely exciting line-up, then I would have been tempted to vote for them. Let’s see: Red Bull, Vettel is great, Webber is meh. Ferrari: Alonso is great, Massa is.. just Massa. McLaren: Button is meh, Perez is good. Lotus: Raikkonen is good, Grosjean is somewhere in between good and meh. And finally Mercedes: Hamilton is great, and I simply don’t know how good Rosberg is as he has never run alongside a reliable source of reference (i.e. was Rosberg good, or were Nakajima and Schumacher ‘bad’?). So I wasn’t really tempted to vote for the former four teams, and slightly tempted to vote for Mercedes.

        As a final remark, @debaser91 you say that Gutierrez and Bottas are unknown quantities, but the truth is that all 22 drivers that will line up in Melbourne are unknown quantities. 2010: we all expected Massa and Schumacher to do phenomenal, and look how that turned out.

        • Ok I see, you’ve answered as if it were asking your favourite rather than the best pairing i.e. the strongest pair in terms of driving ability. Explains your vote, but it seems the vast majority of people interpreted it the way I did.

          And I will say this. There are several drivers on the grid who are definitely not unknown quantities. Vettel, Hamilton, Alonso, Raikkonen and Button have won over 100 races and 8 titles between them. I would say we know with some confidence how those guys are going to perform barring unforeseen circumstances (such as Massa’s crash or Schumacher’s 3 year break) i.e. if you give them a quick car they will produce good results.

          • andae23 (@andae23) said on 5th March 2013, 16:12

            @debaser91

            Ok I see, you’ve answered as if it were asking your favourite rather than the best pairing i.e. the strongest pair in terms of driving ability.

            Where did you read that!? All I’m saying is that Red Bull, Ferrari, Mercedes and Lotus all have one driver that is extremely good, but as a pair they are being let down by their teammate. Williams and Sauber have a very well-balanced drivers’ pair with two drivers that I think are both very good, therefore I am also tempted to vote for one of them.

            Regarding your second paragraph: I’ll admit that my comparison was a bit of a stretch, but my point was that Bottas, Guttierez, Maldonado and Hulkenberg have performed really well in the past few years, so I don’t get why they would be less of a stable factor than drivers who have fought for championships in recent years. And please don’t reply to this saying ‘they are young and inexperienced’, because that has nothing to do with this discussion.

    • Max Jacobson (@vettel1) said on 5th March 2013, 18:59

      Williams and Mercedes yes, although I don’t have very much faith in Gutierrez. Webber though I think is due more credit than he gets: despite the fact I am and avid Vettel fan (you’d never guess I know!) I think he can threaten him more than just occasionally. It is just that Vettel has been on such a good run of form recently that he has been cast to the shadows.

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