Vote for your Malaysian GP driver of the weekend

2013 Malaysian Grand PrixPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Which F1 driver was the best performer during the Malaysian Grand Prix weekend?

Review how each driver got on below and vote for who impressed you the most during the last race weekend.

Malaysian Grand Prix driver-by-driver

Red Bull

Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Sepang, 2013Sebastian Vettel – Spot-on tyre tactics in qualifying helped him claim another pole position, but getting a similar call wrong at the start of the race cost him the lead to Webber. Came very close to passing his team mate using the ‘undercut’ at the final round of pit stops. Ignored Red Bull’s arrangement for the drivers not to race each other in the final stint and passed Webber for the win.

Mark Webber – Got his timing wrong in Q3 and missed a chance to improve his lap time. But started well to claim second place and made the correct call to delay his switch to intermediate tyres. His race pace was a touch slower than Vettel’s, but he got to the last stint in the lead and expected team orders would guarantee him the win.

Ferrari

Fernando Alonso – Massa out-qualified him again (that’s four in a row now) and he damaged his wing on Vettel’s car at the start. He chose not to pit but it failed and put him out almost immediately afterwards. You don’t need hindsight to see staying out with a damaged front wing was a huge risk – this was a surprising call from a driver who usually plays a good long game.

Felipe Massa – A poor start compromised his race: he was beaten off the line by Alonso then held up in the opening corners and lost more time by pitting too early for intermediate tyres. Ferrari’s pace didn’t seem as strong here and he never looked like to challenge the Mercedes pair for a top-four finish.

McLaren

Jenson Button – Ran fifth for much of his race and seemed to have the measure of Massa until a catastrophic pit stop halted his progress. Having made some improvements to the problematic MP4-28 it must have been especially frustrating to have his race spoiled by a recurrence of last year’s operational problems.

Sergio Perez – Unable to make a three-stopper work, he had to pit on the penultimate lap for fresh rubber. By this point he had already fallen behind the Lotuses and Hulkenberg, but held on for his first points with McLaren.

Lotus

Start, Sepang, 2013Kimi Raikkonen – Raikkonen put a second set of intermediates on in Q3 but could only manage seventh on the grid. That became tenth after a penalty for holding up Rosberg. Both Lotus drivers were passed by Hulkenberg and Ricciardo at the start, and Raikkonen dropped behind Grosjean when he went off at turn 12 on lap five – a mistake he repeated later. Despite slight front wing damage from the first lap and what he believed was unfair driving by Hulkenberg, Raikkonen passed the Sauber and finished seventh behind his team mate.

Romain Grosjean – Began the weekend without Lotus’s latest upgrades again. He started Q2 on used tyres, Lotus unaware of the incoming rain due to a radar problem, so he failed to set a time quick enough for the final ten. He used a three-stop strategy and was fifth with five laps to go, but Massa easily took the place off him.

Mercedes

Nico Rosberg – In a reversal of Australia, Rosberg looked strong in the dry parts of qualifying then dropped back when the rain came. Lost a place at the start but quickly passed Massa and Button to take up fourth behind his team mate. The pair swapped positions using DRS after their final pit stops, but Ross Brawn intervened to call off the battle. Rosberg was unhappy at the instruction to stay behind Hamilton but complied, telling Brawn to “remember this” at the end of the race.

Lewis Hamilton – Of those who didn’t take a second set of intermediate tyres in Q3, Hamilton was the highest on the grid in fourth. He split the Red Bulls during the race but dropped back when he had to use the hard tyres. Mercedes also repeatedly told him to save fuel, beginning early in the race, but with Rosberg holding station he collected his first podium for his new team.

Sauber

Nico Hulkenberg, Sauber, Sepang, 2013Nico Hulkenberg – Showed his flair for damp conditions early in the race, climbing from twelfth to sixth. But he dropped behind Grosjean at the second round of stops and was passed by the other Lotus later. Took advantage of Perez’s struggles to claim eighth in the dying stages.

Esteban Gutierrez – A disrupted build-up included an exhaust fault and a fire extinguisher going off in his cockpit during practice. A second behind his team mate in qualifying, he tried to run a three-stop strategy but had to make a final stop with four laps to go, dropping out of the top ten.

Force India

Paul di Resta – Di Resta was left vexed by his team after qualifying and the race. He missed a chance to reach Q3 after he was told to abort a lap on slicks before the rain arrived. In the race a problem with Force India’s new wheel nuts forced him to retire.

Adrian Sutil – Looked in great shape in qualifying when it was dry, but fell to ninth in the rain-hit final session. Was passed by Hulkenberg early on before succumbing to the same pit stop problems as his team mate.

Williams

Pastor Maldonado – Another driver who was caught out by the rain in Q2. Damaged his front wing early in the race and had a couple of excursions off the track. He was running 15th in the closing stages when, for the third year in a row in Malaysia, he suffered an engine failure, this time relating to his KERS.

Valtteri Bottas – Missed Q1 and fell to last at the start but was less than one-and-a-half seconds outside the points at the chequered flag after a battling drive.

Toro Rosso

Jean-Eric Vergne, Toro Rosso, Sepang, 2013Jean-Eric Vergne – Having gone out in Q1 his start to the race was compromised when his team released him into the side of Charles Pic’s Caterham in the pits. The stewards confined their punishment to the team rather than the driver and Vergne set about recovering from 20th. His team mate’s retirement and Gutierrez’s tyre problems helped him claim a point.

Daniel Ricciardo – Was one of several drivers who went off at the flooded turn three on his way to the grid (Webber, Gutierrez, Chilton and both Williams drivers did likewise) but picked up floor damage. “That probably played a part in my problem at the end,” he admitted after retiring with an exhaust failure for the second race running, “the damage on that opening lap affected my overall performance all race long”.

Caterham

Charles Pic – After being mauled by Vergne he did well to recover and finished ahead of his team mate and Chilton’s Marussia. “It’s such a shame that incident happened as we could definitely have finished better if it hadn?óÔéĽÔäót happened,” he said.

Giedo van der Garde – A puncture early in the race was of little consequence as he was pitting at the time anyway. Was out-raced by Pic but praised his team for their quick pit stops after the race.

Marussia

Jules Bianchi – Qualified within three-tenths of Vergne and Bottas but fell behind both Caterhams at the start. He recovered to finish ahead of them and kept Maldonado behind for ten laps in the second half of the race.

Max Chilton – Continued to struggle with tyre locking as in Melbourne, and was some way off his team mate’s pace. Was racing with the Caterhans until he dropped back in the final stint.

Qualifying and race results summary

Started Gap to team mate Laps leading team mate Pitted Finished Gap to team mate
Sebastian Vettel 1st -2.57s 21/56 4 1st -4.298s
Mark Webber 5th +2.57s 35/56 4 2nd +4.298s
Fernando Alonso 3rd +0.14s 1/1 0
Felipe Massa 2nd -0.14s 0/1 4 5th
Jenson Button 8th -0.961s 35/53 3 17th Not on same lap
Sergio Perez 10th +0.961s 18/53 4 9th Not on same lap
Kimi Raikkonen 7th -0.996s 5/56 3 7th +12.915s
Romain Grosjean 11th +0.996s 51/56 3 6th -12.915s
Nico Rosberg 6th +0.82s 9/56 4 4th +0.459s
Lewis Hamilton 4th -0.82s 47/56 4 3rd -0.459s
Nico Hulkenberg 12th -1.096s 55/55 4 8th Not on same lap
Esteban Gutierrez 14th +1.096s 0/55 4 12th Not on same lap
Paul di Resta 15th +7.675s 10/22 2
Adrian Sutil 9th -7.675s 12/22 2
Pastor Maldonado 16th -0.34s 12/45 3
Valtteri Bottas 18th +0.34s 33/45 3 11th
Jean-Eric Vergne 17th +0.435s 16/51 3 10th Not on same lap
Daniel Ricciardo 13th -0.435s 35/51 3 18th Not on same lap
Charles Pic 20th -0.618s 27/55 4 14th -8.984s
Giedo van der Garde 22nd +0.618s 28/55 4 15th +8.984s
Jules Bianchi 19th -1.238s 52/54 4 13th Not on same lap
Max Chilton 21st +1.238s 2/54 4 16th Not on same lap

Review the race data

Vote for your driver of the weekend

Which driver do you think did the best job this weekend?

Cast your vote below and explain your choice in the comments.

Who was the best driver of the 2013 Malaysian Grand Prix weekend?

  • Sebastian Vettel (17%)
  • Mark Webber (34%)
  • Fernando Alonso (1%)
  • Felipe Massa (1%)
  • Jenson Button (6%)
  • Sergio Perez (0%)
  • Kimi Raikkonen (1%)
  • Romain Grosjean (2%)
  • Nico Rosberg (14%)
  • Lewis Hamilton (4%)
  • Nico Hulkenberg (5%)
  • Esteban Gutierrez (0%)
  • Paul di Resta (0%)
  • Adrian Sutil (1%)
  • Pastor Maldonado (0%)
  • Valtteri Bottas (0%)
  • Jean-Eric Vergne (1%)
  • Daniel Ricciardo (0%)
  • Charles Pic (0%)
  • Giedo van der Garde (0%)
  • Jules Bianchi (12%)
  • Max Chilton (0%)

Total Voters: 862

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2013 Malaysian Grand Prix

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Images ?é?® Red Bull/Getty, Sauber

149 comments on “Vote for your Malaysian GP driver of the weekend”

  1. Mark Webber for me. Played the team game and didn’t take it too far even when his team mate was being an idiot, he knew when the battle was lost. He’s rightfully annoyed, and was doing a good solid job. The team and Seb Vettel owe him big time.

      1. Craig Packer
        31st March 2013, 4:35

        This is a little different, because Webber was significantly faster at that stage in the race, and the cars were running 3rd and 4th, and both still racing other teams and drivers, not running in ‘conservation mode.’ In Malaysian last weekend, RedBull was streets ahead and had called for tyre, engine, gearbox and risk management. Mark turned down and Seb didn’t; that’s a pretty big difference. Mark was honest about his disapproval and honest about his decision to ignore the order. Sebastian is lying about not understanding, or hearing the order. Furthermore, it was not for a GP win, which is a big prize compared to just a points collection. (Sebastian went on to win the championship with 10 races to go)

  2. Jules Bianchi! Again!
    Give that man a top drive. (Perhaps a Red Bull? :-p )

    1. Bianchi is going to be my default pick every weekend now, when there is no more notable effort up front!

    2. I also voted Bianchi, was not convinced about him at first having not really followed him but now he has impressed me with great drives, he is fast and needs a decent car ASAP !

    3. Yep I thought exactly the same. With all the drama team orders at the sharp end, I think it’s got to be Bianchi. He’s two races in and already people are starting to say he’s out peforming the car.
      If he carries on like this for another 3-4 months, people will start talking about who he’ll replace. Take note di Resta..!

    4. I wanted to vote Bianchi as well, but it is a bit of shame because the TV broadcast does not focus that much of backmarkers. I was eagerly waiting for some moments on the TV screen from him, and spotted it only a couple of times, in a flash. So all I know about him is after race position, which is very impressive.

    5. Yep, Bianchi or Bottas for me but it goes to Bianchi. He’s showing promise! Now if Robin Frijns could get a steady drive…

  3. Like it or not, naughty boy or utter greatness, Vettel deserves driver of the weekend: fautless at qualy, recovered very fast and team orders aside, he was faster than Mark in the end (due to strategy or whatever, but he just was).

    Had it been a rival leading, it’d have been an epic win and a great recovery.

    1. Had it been a rival leading, it would have ended somewhat different I guess…

    2. I totally disagree and I’ve lost all respect for Vattel for what he did.

      He’s a triple world champion who believes he has an image to uphold and must do everything in his power to preserve that image, which on Sunday meant disobeying pre-race rules, direct orders from the team principle out on track and disrespecting his team mate Mark Webber.

      He acted like a 6 year old child and yet people are voting him as the ‘best’. I don’t understand

      1. @phil18wales

        As people know, I’m a racing fan first, then Webber fan. I rather watch a brilliant race with Mark retiring than Mark winning from pole in 2011 Vettel-style.

        What I got from Sunday’s debacle is that… had the roles been reversed, people would’ve hailed Mark as a true racer and they’d have applauded him, as it happened in Silverstone 2011.

        But because Vettel’s in that thin line between great and naughty, he’s fitted the silly boy hat.
        Their past history is known already. They both race hard, there are shortcuts but fron 2009 till today, it’s been a fair battle that’s been won by Vettel most of the times.

        What happened on Sunday is a consecuence of Red Bull’s policy to let them race and don’t let them race. It’s that grey área which is perfectly understandable to happen. I mean, I doubt as a team they want both cars to race hard as if they were rivals at every single race, sometimes you got top lay it safe and not battle it out. It’s a hard compromise…

        That’s why sometimes they protect each other and sometimes they let them have a go. Maybe Sunday’s conditions in terms of tyre degradation and stuff like that needed careful decisions, which were not followed.

        But that’d would imply that Red Bull clearly decided to end the race like that, and coming from the team radio messages, they weren’t imposing orders, they were just commenting about it. Think about Ross Brawn’s introctions and compare them with “this is silly” from Horner… hard to draw a line with such comment, isn’t it? Not saying that means Vettel was free from guilt, but come on… had they really wanted to stay with Webber leading they’d have said it so and they’d have acted differently.

        What Sebastian did yesterday is debatable, but come the end of the day, he did what Mark Webber always asks: he raced hard until the end. I’m sure had Mark been behind, we’d be cheering him for being how he is: a no-joke, flat-out racer.

        Vettel might have lost respect, but that doesn’t mean he wasn’t the fastest driver all weekend. His only mistake was pitting for slicks a lap too soon.

        1. @fer-no65 spot on. And before blaming Vettel I’d actually put some on the pit-wall first. if they never intended to have them battle for the win then why not pitting Mark first and avoid a clash all together.

        2. @fer-no65 +10.

          I am wondering Webber is getting More Votes for the Driver of the Weekend for “Obeying team Orders”, Qualifying 5th and was generally being slower than his team mate the whole weekend.

        3. Excellent answer.

          Pretty much my only problem with Vettel on Sunday was that he “apologized” like that. He just had to say the truth about it… this pseudo-apology just does not fit his usual style.

        4. Antonio (@antoniocorleone)
          25th March 2013, 19:21

          I was thinking about that.
          What if the team told Vettel to keep position while leading and Webber dissobeyed that?!?
          He would be a hero, a winner of this poll with 70% surely cause he was a racer and because we all hate team orders.
          I agree with you fer-65

        5. Well said , my vote goes to Vettel as well.

        6. The reason why this is considered in different light is that Webber was told that he would not be challenged twice, and had therefore turned his engine down. Back at Silverstone it was both of them at very different points in their tire strategy and Vettel was fully prepared to defend. Red Bull had also been making a fuss around that time about how they let their drivers race unlike Ferrari. If Vettel had been in another team and coming at Webber at the end there then there can be little doubt that Webber would have his engine up and would have successfully defended as he had done all throughout the previous 50 laps. Vettel was not doing any ‘proper racing’ when he launched his sneak attack. He also wasn’t ‘sticking it to the man’ he was betraying the trust of his team and all the guys in the garage and his swerving at the end of the race showed his supreme arrogance and ignorance to the situation.

      2. Webber has ignored instructions not to fight Vettel in the past, do you think the same about Webber then?

  4. MB (@muralibhats)
    25th March 2013, 13:25

    Webber… Finger for the Finger!

  5. i’d go for Hulkenberg, on practically his first race of the season, he’s already scores the same point as both McLaren drivers could pick up.

    1. Not really fair to give that comparison, as Button would have scored a fifth (or so it would seem), if the team didn’t do a McLaren in the Pits.

    2. I agree and also voted Hulkenberg. What a drive! Brilliant defensive drivining and superb overtakes, this race showed his talent. Unfortunately this year’s Sauber doesn’t seem as competitive as last season’s.

  6. Thought Jenson drove pretty well here, as did Bianchi; they both outdrove their cars.

    1. Had the same kind of reflexion. After that kind of race, difficult to pick one of the 4 guys up front and for the rest Button and Bianchi did the best job with the car they had (with a mention to Hulkenberg which did a great job as well).
      ForceIndia throw away a lot for the moment. It appears they have a great car and it’s time for them to take advantage of that as I don’t believe they will hold through development race.

  7. Went for Vettel – drama and politics aside – qualifying was brilliant and the move on Mark was great racing. nasty in hindsight but a great show nevertheless.

    1. Even with Webber’s engine turned down, and Vettel’s not, he had to fight to pass him. Great racing my a**.

      1. Can everyone stop going on about webber turning his engine down? It takes half a second to turn the fuel mix dial up which is exactly what he would’ve done when he noticed vettel having a go

  8. I guess I really should’ve voted for Vettel, I agree with @fer-no65 that had it been any other in front of him it would’ve been a truly epic drive.

    In the end I went for Jenson, which I think might be the first time I’ve voted for him! I was mega impressed with his pace in the damp and was really unlucky to miss out on some good points.

    Kudos to Bianchi again, I wonder if Webber does decide to walk this year he’d be a good bet for his replacement, really punching above his weight. And Rosberg, had he qualified better could’ve made quite the surprise, was consistently quick and good with his tires yesterday. Shame he missed out due to team orders.

  9. Nico Rosberb here. Honarable mentions, Nico Hulkenberg, Bianchi, Webber, Hamilton and Grosjean

    1. *Rosberg!

      1. Rosberg for me too.

        1. Me three…

  10. Hulkenberg for me. Qualified fairly well and battled all race long. Jules Bianchi also continues to impress.

  11. Possibly Mark – for not decking Seb on the podium.
    Maybe Jenson – for not decking the bloke on the front right.
    Definitely Bianchi – for getting more performance out of the Marussia that seemed possible.

    1. Shouldn’t Jenson be angry with the front-jack man since he dropped the car before the front-right wheel was attached?

  12. Not sure anyone deserves this from the sharp end of the grid. Maybe Rosberg.

  13. I voted Rosberg, but I actually think it was Vettel so wish I could change my vote.

    Whether or not you think he was a nice person, the guy mastered qualifying and put in a good race.

  14. Vettel- Pole by almost a second and the win by overtaking 2 fast cars on the way. Only driving error was his early first stop

    1. @91jb12 You mean one car that was struggling on the hard tyres and saving fuel and one that was reassured he was under no threat and had tuned everything down. Vettel had a good weekend yes, but while the race was fair he was out-raced by Webber. Not that I would give it to Webber because he didn’t perform in quali. Neither of the Red Bull guys deserve it in my opinion, there were better performances out there from the likes of Hulkenburg, Bianchi, Button, Rosberg and even Hamilton.

  15. I don’t understand why anyone would vote for either Red Bull driver. The fact that they were so close together strongly suggests that neither man was particularly outperforming the car – and surely you have to do a bit more than just delivering on what the car’s capable of to be driver of the weekend?

    1. That said, it still makes more sense than the two people who voted for Alonso are making.

    2. I don’t understand why anyone would vote for either Red Bull driver. The fact that they were so close together strongly suggests that neither man was particularly outperforming the car – and surely you have to do a bit more than just delivering on what the car’s capable of to be driver of the weekend?

      @ilanin erm… so what if they didn’t outperform the car? if having a good car but failing to use it means you had a bad race, using the good tool you have and mastering a race and qualy (like both Red Bulls cars did) means you had a good one, doesn’t it?

      1. No, it means you had an average race – you did what would be expected under the circumstances. If Vettel had had a good race, no controversy would have arisen since Webber wouldn’t have been anywhere near him – we’ve seen it often enough over the last few years, haven’t we?

        There were definitely drivers who did outperform expectations – Bianchi, Button until his second pit stop, Rosberg inasmuch as he was at absolute worst level with his team-mate in the dry after being behind in Australia – so I don’t see why just meeting expectations makes you the best.

        1. The fact that they were so close together strongly suggests that neither man was particularly outperforming the car

          It doesn’t suggest that at all. All it tells us is that they were both performing similarly – either they were both underperforming, or both performing exactly at their expected level, or both overperforming – but we don’t know which. It’s not impossible for both team-mates to have a good race/weekend simultaneously, after all.

          1. True, it’s not impossible. But both drivers putting in a performance in the top quartile is substantially less probable than both drivers putting in a performance near their respective medians.

  16. I went with Webber, he drove a good race and screwed at the end by Seb.
    Bianchi was excellent and it continues to prove he is deserving of a better seat in future years I feel.
    Rosberg was good as well as Grosjean but not the best of the weekend.
    Seb did a good job with the pole, and in the race but to put himself first before the team, at the possible expense of the team overall, is not good sportsmanship and my overall respect for him has dropped quite a bit after this.

  17. It’s a tough choice between both Red Bull drivers but Vettel is my driver of the weekend.

    His pole position lap was very impressive, his start was great, he never gave up and his pass on Webber is most probably going to be one of the best passes of the whole season.

    I also appreciate how he apologised after the race and I believe that he really meant it. If he broke an agreement with Webber and the team, then it was not nice. Still, FIA and Red Bull should be the ones to blame – FIA for reallowing team orders in 2010 and RBR for unnecessary use of them.

    1. Yeah I agree. I chose Vettel as well – although what he did made me like him even less, I appreciate why he did it.

      Let’s put this in context. His move gained him 7 additional points. If you take 7 points off every season that Vettel has been in F1, he would have only won 1 WDC – 2011. He would have lost out to Alonso in both 2010 and 2012!

      That is why he took his chances and put the move on Webber. Schumacher would have done the same.

  18. Close between Bianchi, Hulkenberg and Button. Gave it to Bianchi, because he was a newcomer to Sepang..

  19. Almost no one was excellent from the whole grid. My vote was between Bianchi and Rosberg, but the first took it. Impressive once again.

  20. I’m voting for Nico. He had pace all weekend, was very strong when quali was dry, unfortunately he didn’t get the lap in Q3 but can hardly persecute him for that given the conditions.

    He had a measured and a (typically) understated drive. He held the pace of Hamilton, maintaining a gap early in the race, despite Hamilton (rightfully) getting the beneficial earlier stops. Then when Lewis slowed in the second half, Nico closed the gap. Had a clean battle before being told to settle behind Lewis.

    Nico deserved the podium, Hamilton even acknowledged it, but Rosberg showed a great amount of respect to both his team and Hamilton by obeying the orders. He wanted to race and justifiably argued the decision and although I would have loved for him to pull a Vettel and go for it, he acted in the best interests of the team and didn’t make a fuss.

    But most importantly, he showed he isn’t going to be thrashed by superstar Lewis and that he has the pace and brain.

  21. Webber deserves it.

    Also find it odd that Rosberg has more votes than Hamilton.. best driver over the weekend because he wasnt having to fuel save as much as Hamilton in the remaining laps of the race? Either because the team under fueled Hamilton too much, or because Lewis was pushing the Redbulls hard to make a result happen instead of sitting back waiting for something to happen? Rosberg was out qualified and out raced by Hamilton, sorry to whom this may upset.. :]

    1. Let’s take those in turn.

      If the team under-fueled Hamilton, then he was lighter than Rosberg and therefore unsurprisingly slightly quicker; Rosberg’s superior pace in the second half of the race is just the flip side of that.
      If Hamilton used up too much fuel trying too hard to push the Red Bulls, then he mismanaged his race badly and is very fortunate that Ross Brawn decided to save him from being passed by his team-mate who spent fuel more intelligently. I don’t think that happened, I don’t think Brawn would have neutralised the inter-team race to make up for a driver’s mistake.

      In the first case, we don’t have enough information to properly evaluate Rosberg’s race pace relative to Hamilton’s, in the second case, Rosberg comprehensively outraced Hamilton, who made a serious error.

      1. Traverse (@)
        25th March 2013, 14:51

        Let’s not forget that Rosberg passed Ham twice, only to be re-passed instantly on both occasions (which proves that Ham had the pace, but was being quelled by the team).

        So yes, Rosberg did manage his fuel consumption better than Ham, but on the flip side Ham out qualified and led Rosberg for the entire race.

  22. Webber deserved to win this race … I still don’t understand why people vote for Vettle ..

  23. I voted for Vettel. He showed, why he became champion for 3 consecutive years. He blew away everyone in qualifying, was driving solidly during the race and made spectacular overtaking move on Webber. True racer.

  24. Vettel showed his true colors on Sunday, he only cares about winning, he disobeyed a pre-race plan and disrespected his team mate and for what?

    He acted like a 6 year old child

    Rosberg showed everyone how to do it, he nor Hamilton like what happened, but the decision came from above them and they both respected that.

    Webber’s and Vetel’s ‘team’ relationship is now over and it will become all out war splitting the team in 2 and forcing Mark to retire and the end of the year because he’ll have to leave RedBull and he won’t go to a slow team.

    1. Why are you surprised about VET-WEB relationship? They never got along, Turkey 2010 was worse than this.

    2. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
      25th March 2013, 14:18

      +1 Vettel had a chance to act like a true champion and just looked horrible especially while Hamilton’s speech was that of a true champion. I’ve always wished that Webber had won 1 of the past 3 championships.

      1. @freelittlebirds Lewis has faced many of such Storms before. he exactly knows what to say here. Experience matters. He had this experience in his very first year in F1. He is a veteran in this aspect. No one teaches a fish to swim :)

        I am just wondering Let’s say Vettel had said “Yes I overtook Webber because I wanted to Win”. Do you think all the poeple who are blaming him here would have come out and praised him for his honestly. In my Dreams.

    3. Vettel showed his true colors on Sunday, he only cares about winning,

      @phil18wales They all only care about winning. That is what the team expects from the drivers and that is how they end up in F1 the Most Competitive Sport on this Planet.

  25. By the way, those, who said was wrong not obeying to team orders, I suggest you to watch this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ko94oniszuA

  26. Ben (@scuderia29)
    25th March 2013, 14:14

    no one really stood out for me

  27. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
    25th March 2013, 14:15

    Looking at the results, Nico has 13% of the votes and Lewis 4% of the votes. I voted for Webber.

    Why do you guys think that Nico drove better than Lewis?

    I personally think Lewis’ restraint to save fuel from Lap 20 would rank higher in my book. Like Mercedes explained to Nico, it’s not like Nico was “naturally” faster than Lewis as evidenced by the fact that Lewis kept Nico behind him. Lewis simply couldn’t floor it.

    1. If I hadn’t voted for Bianchi, I would have voted for Rosberg, in his shoes, I would probably have given it the right foot on the last lap but his restraint was admirable and his ability to understand that Lewis’ position in the championship is higher and keeping it there is more important than his personal glory. As one of the main stats drivers are tracked on is podiums this was no small sacrifice. That shows the character of the man.

      Bianchi racing almost into the points in a Marussia was more impressive to me though.

  28. I might have voted for Vettel if he hadn’t been so sneaky in attacking his team mate.

    I might have voted for Webber if he had managed to keep Vettel behind.

    I might have voted for Rosberg if he had managed to get by his team mate while Lewis was still capable of fighting back.

    In the end I had to choose between Bianchi and Button. After only two races, it already begs the question what Jules can do in a faster car (they will be wondering at Force India, too, I’m sure), and his 13th place was a useful result for the team.

    But in the end I voted for Button. He pretty much maximized the potential of his troublesome McLaren in both qualifying and the race, and would have been rewarded with a strong fifth (no more, I think) without McLaren’s pit stop blunder.

  29. All my reasonable options were in the top 4, so I’m gonna go with Massa. Qualified superbly again and even though his race wasn’t the best out there, he managed to salvage some points for Ferrari. And provide us with one of the best overtakes. And had a brilliant last stint. And he passed Alonso in the WDC.

    Notable mentions: Button, Grosjean, Bianchi.

  30. Voted for Webber, the moral winner. Did consider Alonso for being sly enough to realise that if he’d drop out Red Bull would shoot themselves in the leg (or rather Vettel doing the shooting) possibly compromising the rest of their season (yes I’m joking).

  31. Nico Rosberg! Kept his cool even though a podium was up for grabs.

    1. @davidtyrrell – I think that’s to his detriment actually: it says to me he lacks the killer instinct of Vettel! Just my two cents though ;)

  32. Traverse (@)
    25th March 2013, 14:39

    I voted for the Vet. He took the bull by the horns and displayed the killer instinct needed to achieve greatness.

    1. He forgot to thank Newey for the wonderful machinery at his disposal. He owes 50% of his achievement to that man. Until he drives a car like the F2012 (which is more than second off the pace at the start of 2012 season) and performs like Alonso last year), for me he’s just a champion being carried on a shoulder by Newey.

  33. The Next Pope
    25th March 2013, 14:43

    I can’t vote but Rosberg, Hamilton and Button for me.
    Honorable mentions Hulkenberg and Grosjean.

  34. Not only is Vettel a selfish brat, but he is a liar to boot! When asked why he did what he did, he said “I don’t know, I messed up”. Lies! he did it because he wanted to win regardless of orders and sportsmanship toward his team mate. Webber had adjusted his settings according to team orders so was unable to respond to Vettel’s crass behaviour. Furthermore, Webber’s restrained comments showed his maturity and control, something I cannot imagine Vettel ever developing.

  35. Just want to add, for anyone who has not seen the comment by another person:
    It’s easier to seek forgiveness than it is to seek permission. Vettel took the coward’s way out.

  36. Ahmed Alhojairat (@)
    25th March 2013, 14:47

    Am a Ferrari Fan.. but voted for Nico Rosberg

  37. This was very tough, because there weren’t many drivers I feel deserved my vote. First the Red Bull drivers: they both did very well, but the nonsense post-race is what stopped me from voting either of them. Both drivers showed a lack of respect and therefore I cannot appreciate either of them this weekend. So definitely no Red Bull vote.

    Then the Mercedes drivers: similar pace, both very strong yesterday. But they did lose out to the Red Bull guys in front with a car that might have been able to win the race.

    My vote eventually went to Jenson Button: the car is not as competitive, but his pace during the first dry stint and more notably the second stint was almost matching Red Bull’s and Mercedes’s pace. He was just so unlucky that McLaren once again screwed up and ruined his race. Maybe as a bit of consolation, he gets my vote for driver of the GP.

    Final note on Jules Bianchi: people are looking at the results from the previous two races and see that Bianchi finished ahead of two Caterhams and the other Marussia by quite some margin. But in fact, the reason for this is that the other cars have had issues in both races. In the Malaysian GP, Pic was actually faster than Bianchi for a great portion of the race, but his collision with Ricciardo ruined his race and therefore he finished so far behind Bianchi, arguably in a slower car. So after two races, I’m actually more impressed with Pic than with Bianchi.

    1. @andae23 Are you forgetting that Bianchi is a rookie, whereas Pic has a year’s worth of experience already?
      You’re also probably forgetting that Bianchi had less mileage than anyone in pre-season testing. Also, he had never driven at this circuit before Friday.

      1. @wsrgo I’m not saying Bianchi isn’t doing very well (he is the best rookie of 2013 so far, no doubt), but I think that a lot of people are exaggerating his performances.

        1. @andae23 You completely sidestepped what I said. Care to expound on why you think so?

          1. @wsrgo Hehe, I should become a politician :P

            The only point of reference we have for how good Bianchi really is are the three other backmarkers, and they have been having some miserable races so far. Chilton and vd Garde hit each other in Melbourne, which saw Chilton have front wing damage and vd Garde had a puncture. Pic had a KERS failure. Yesterday, Pic collided with Ricciardo in the pit lane, Chilton was got stuck behind the Caterhams after a bad start and vd Garde is just vd Garde. So all 6 of their appearances have been pretty miserable so far, while Bianchi has had a chance to spread his wings a little.

            Also, the fastest lap in Melbourne (11th fastest or so?) was set on a brand new set of tyres. In Malaysia he finished in front of Maldo because he had a front wing change. So things are a bit out off perspective in my opinion, therefore I will draw my conclusions on his pace in 5 rounds time.

            The thing that just really annoys me is that a lot of people don’t take the effort to really study Bianchi’s race performance, like press releases, lap charts and lap time charts. They just look at the results and see that Bianchi – again – finishes way up ahead. As this is the second race in a row, people assume this is a trend and start worshiping Bianchi for outperforming his car. In my opinion, these conclusions are very preliminary: drawing conclusions on a matter you haven’t studied properly is an insult to journalism.

          2. @andae23

            And what you in turn have missed is that Bianchi has twice qualified closer to the 18th placed runner than he was to the one behind him, that Bianchi would likely have beaten Pic without the latter having been hit by a Toro Rosso (Bianchi pitted on Lap 17; Pic and Riccardo on three laps later, Bianchi was only three and a half seconds behind Pic when he pitted) and, equally importantly, that Bianchi’s not having been involved in any of these problems is in large part racecraft (Pic is also blameless, but Pic’s got one more year of experience so might be expected to have decent racecraft by now).

            Bianchi’s good, of that I’m pretty much certain. How good is he? That’s where we get into insufficient data. Obviously massively better than Chilton, but Chilton’s probably pretty bad. I’d love to see somebody like Kovalainen in the other Marussia to get a better idea.

      2. @wsrgo Pic has a year’s worth of experience, but he’s driving in a different team, so what does he have to do with anything? While Bianchi is without a doubt talented, his team mate is arguably the worst driver on the grid and thus Bianchi’s performances are easily exaggerated.

  38. By any mean, it’s Vettel.

    1. You mean it’s Newey.

  39. Looking at it completely dispassionately, I have to say Vettel. He made his chances count – however much I may disagree with parts of his decision.

    1. Cant award it to a driver who overtook someone who wasnt aware there was going to be a battle, a kind of ‘sucker punch’

      1. True, but on the other hand he put it on pole, then did what he needed to in order to win. I may not like it, but in such decisions championships are made. hence my vote.

  40. It was a tough choice between Jenson Button and Romain Grosjean. The top 3 imo had no chance this week.

    Grosjean completely outclassed Raikkonen despite having inferior machinery, but failed to outqualify him, so my vote goes to Jenson.

    I don’t know what he managed to do to make the MP4-28 go from 2.5s off the pace to leading a race in the space of a week, but it’s a great job by him and the team! Outclassed (unsurprisingly) Perez yet again as well. Shame he had to retire but he looked much happier this weekend.

    Notable shoutouts to Massa who has been better than Alonso so far this season, Sutil who impressed again, Bottas for a strong race & Bianchi for simply dragging that Marussia into places it really shouldn’t belong!

    1. @craig-o

      Grosjean completely outclassed Raikkonen despite having inferior machinery

      What?

      1. @vettel1 Grosjean has not received all of the updates for the Lotus that Raikkonen has.

        1. @craig-o I see that now! That could explain the out-qualifying partially though (but it was mainly down to an error of strategy not sending him out before the rain).

          1. apparently Lotus has a faulty radar view meaning they did not see the weather coming, that explains how they made that error.

            I must say I might consider him. He did not put a foot wrong this weekend, outraced his teammate and did finish quite a bit up from where he started. Thanks @craig-o for pointing to him :-)

  41. Rosberg for me. Webber, yeah maybe, but Rosberg definitely.

  42. It will be very interesting to see which driver wins this vote, since there were many great (and controversial) performances and in my opinion none of them stands out. I honestly can’t decide whom to vote.

  43. I’m going with Bianci, partly because that was a genuinely impressive driver and party because I so nearly gave it to him for Melbourne. It’s difficult to stand out when you’re at the back of the grid, but Bianci is doing what Alonso and Webber did in the past by consistently punching above his weight and threatening to give the established teams a bloody nose. Could well nick a point in a future chaotic/wet race.

    This guy’s special, well worth keeping an eye on!

  44. Sebastain Vettel – brilliant tyre strategy in qualifying to steal pole by nearly a second, then a controversial but well-earned victory.

  45. I am asking myself how could it be Vettel?? He was asked to maintain an at least 3 seconds gap right after he was closing up to Webber after the first stops from lap 12, than the same after the second stop from lap 24 and than again from lap 35 or so. He was following orders until lap 43. Team decisions favoured Webber 4-0 against Vettel. It must be Webber he was excellent all weekend and that overtake… Ohh boy! Awesome! Wait, maybe I mixed them up. Was it Vettel after all ?

  46. I have to say Bianchi. His qualifying lap was spectacular, thumping Chilton by over 1 and a quarter seconds. He was great in the race to, finishing over 30 seconds ahead of the Caterhams (granted they did have a few issues). He’s winning the battle of the tail enders and if he continues performing like he has in the first two races he will be making his way onto a top team’s radar very soon.

  47. vettel. his ruhtlessness explained why he is a 3x WDC and mark’s whining explained why he is 0x WDC. and do people honestly think that if it were alonso and massa in the situation, alonso will no overtake him? come on

  48. Jules Bianchi, although I hardly saw these backmarkers on TV. I would have awarded this to the top drivers but to see them whine, lie and also defy orders, I can’t. It was an interesting race nonetheless.

  49. I vote for Vettel, his racing dna is phenomenal.
    There is an important issue about the tyres.
    But, he made his move at the final laps, when it was clear that the tyres will last.
    These points are so important.

  50. Lewis was the only driver to battle the dominant Redbulls upfront, and he only gets 4% of the votes?

    1. @jason12 Hamilton himself admitted that his team mate performed better and would’ve been on the podium hadn’t there been team orders.

      1. A false admission…
        He out-qualified Nico, and was faster than Nico throughout, until he ran out tyres and fuel (almost :D).

        1. @jason12 Hamilton was faster at first only because he used his fuel very early on whereas Rosberg saved fuel (and would’ve passed Hamilton because of that, as Hamilton himself stated)

        2. @hotbottoms
          Would you have been happier if Lewis didn’t race the Redbulls, right from the beginning, but saved his tyres and fuel?
          For how will these F1 races be killed half way through, in fear of severe tyre degradation?
          Kimi wins ‘the easiest race of his life’, and the team can’t replicate that coz they don’t really have a handle on these tyres.
          So they were probably just lucky the tyres switched on that time.
          Who’s gona be lucky next?
          We really need to go back to RACING and at least Lewis does try to do just that (until HANDICAPPED by the status quo).

          1. @jason12
            Whether the current tyres and fuel rules are good is completely different thing. DotW is the driver, who “did the best job this weekend” and in my opinion (and Hamilton’s) Rosberg did better job than Hamilton this weekend.

            I’m quite certain that Hamilton’s number one priority was achieving the best possible result, not being entertaining. And had it not been team orders, Rosberg would’ve achieved a better result than Hamilton by merit.

          2. @hotbottoms
            If ‘best job’ means ‘nursing tyres’ then ofcoz…..

            Hope Lewis doesn’t deteriorate into one of those guys anytime soon.

        3. Also I don’t think Bernie wants Lewis at Redbull because of some ‘fatherly love’ that he has for him.
          Bernie realizes that F1 desperately needs some REVITALIZATION (it’s getting boring quite quickly).
          And there’s no better medicine to achieve this right now then to team up Lewis with Vettel (and just let the games begin).
          Vettel supporters, both inside and outside Redbull, would obviously not be too keen on this.

    2. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
      25th March 2013, 16:43

      +1 I was surprised too and to think that he had actually been told to lift off on lap 20, his performance was very impressive.

  51. I voted Vettel, but i think Biachi would deserve it too. Voted Vettel because he got the pole, he was the faster, we wanted to win.

  52. Good set of choices for this race.

    Vettel will get votes for pace and breaking team orders (albeit only when it suits him)

    Webber will get votes for a great start, good control of the race, speaking out, and sympathy for Vettel’s control of the team.

    Button got his car where it possibly doesn’t belong, kept up with the leaders and fought off overtakes as much as possible.

    But I think the vote goes to Bianchi, even if we didn’t get to see much of it.

    1. How do you expect him to break team orders when it does not suit him? Just as Webber he breaks them when they play into his hands.

  53. Not alot of drivers really standing out this weekend. I voted Vettel. Great quali lap, and quick in the race. Webber did good too, and so did the Mercedes boys (not Hamilton’s fault being under-fuelled) and Jensen Button.

  54. The top drivers and their teams did a real mess this time, at that degree that I am not feeling comfortable to vote any of them. Massa was no where, Lotus drivers as well, so I picked Hulkenberg. It was his first drive for Sauber, and he did well.

  55. Well, it’s tough one. I feel that all this mess about team orders doesn’t show what a great weekend Vettel had. He was stunning in Q3, and he was very fast throughout the race. And he had to fight for it, after a bad strategy call in the first few laps. His battle with Webber was amazing, I think it was one of the best of recent years.

    I expected Hulkenberg to do a very good job in mixed conditions and he didn’t disappoint me at all. His first and second stints were absolutely impressive, considering Sauber’s pace. He was very aggressive with Raikkonen, but I think he respected the rules, even if Kimi wasn’t too happy about it. It’s a shame that Sauber could only manage P8, considering their podium last year, but that was the best the car could do. It’s great to see Hulkenberg fast from the very beginning (that’s his first race!), even if he is probably quite disappointed with the car.

    1. I totally forgot to say the driver I voted! In the end I voted Hulkenberg.

  56. Voted for bianchi once again. Another impressive performance by him in the marussia just a shame he didn’t get some t.v coverage. Not sure why people are voting for webber, he had a good race but there was better drivers on the day and voting for vettel. WELL… What cam I say?

  57. Vince (@devilontrack)
    25th March 2013, 18:31

    Can never understand how underrated Grosjean is, how can a driver start 11th and finish 6th (a position higher than his teammate who had upgrades on his car) yet he only gets 2% of the votes. Voted for him because i thought he was superb during the race.

  58. Mark Webber for being a team player.

  59. FlyingDutchman
    25th March 2013, 19:56

    I voted Vettel. Somebody (I forget who) once said, “if you no longer go for a gap that exists, you are no longer a racing driver.”

    1. That’s the best defense I’ve heard yet.

  60. i voted for Mark and was amazed to see that he was the over whelming favorite. little vettle showed that he has been reading too many press releases about his greatness…. No need to be a lo life when you are on the top of the mountain. I was also very surprised that Massa did not get more votes as he was my 2nd choice. Thanks, R & R

  61. i like to choose the driver that hit above his weight, when applicable. i flipped a coin between the resurgent massa and the strong showing from rosberg – i clicked on massa.

  62. Hmmm,. Seems like I’m the only one to vote for Jean Eric Vergne. He and Bianchi are the only ones that really impressed me enough to take notice. All others were performing worse that they should (for all different reasons).

  63. Sebastian Vettel!

  64. Vettel was he best driver… Simply that he raced to win like Senna,Schuamacher,Prost. He drove like a champion! For some reason Webber seems to get more support as he plays the political game… He raced Vettel in Brazil last year when he was completely out of he title race and potentially could of ruined Vettels title bid. Webber is and will always be a number 2 driver. Lets hope he moves to Ferrari and then he will really find out about team orders!!!! Make way for some younger and better talent!

  65. Grosjean for me – he outKimi’d Kimi in a car which was not the class of the field this weekend.

    I would have voted for Vettel for his sheer couldn’t-care-less attitude and driving skills, but those spur-of-the-moment lies about whether he knew about team orders leave too a sour taste in the mouth.

  66. Vettel for me.

  67. I’m finding it difficult to pick the best driver from this weekend. For me no one had an exceptional weekend. The Red Bull drivers did more or less what I’d expect from them, as did the Mercedes. The Ferraris, Lotus’s, Force India’s, Saubers and Williams all had underwhelming weekends I think. Neither of the Torro Rosso drivers really stood out for me either, and the same can be said for the 2 younger teams at the back, except perhaps for Bianchi. However, maybe that’s how fast his car is this year and he’s not outperforming it, it’s just that Max Chilton is making him look good, but I don’t know as I can’t remember seeing much of the Marussias in the BBC highlights.

    In the end my top three are Webber, Rosberg, and Bianchi. I think, in the end, my vote will go to Bianchi, purely because he finished the race quite a bit ahead of the other racers from the 2 younger teams.

  68. If people worried about team orders and drivers paying their way and others saying nobody really stood up maybe the grid should look like this

    Red Bull: Bianchi & Ricciardo

    Ferrari: Alonso & Vettel

    Mercedes: Hulkenberg & Hamilton

    Lotus: Raikkonen & Rosberg

    McLaren: Button & Webber

    Then the best 10 drivers are in the best 5 cars

  69. I choose Vettel. Let me tell you why firstly. Go all back to that point where they raced eachother. Now look at this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6MFRpipkQu8 , why isn’t the refferee coming in between them? IT’S FREAKING PART OF THE GAME! Their reason to fight is to settle a score that has happend in history OR in many cases, just because there is a fault that hasn’t cleared out. There are even hockeyplayers that shaked eachothers hands after a fight. What does this all have to do with F1? Everything. What I want to say is “this sorts of racing is part of the game”. THE FANS LIKE THIS RACING! So in hockey, they fight to give the fans a good show. Presumably, this is just the same in F1. Why did hamilton and button fight? Cause they would make the race exciting! Alot of history happend between them (sort of why they want to settle the score once again) but seb has changed his overtakingmanouvre (don’t say it’s true, or have you already forgotten Abu Dabhi and Brazil? Don’t say it was luck eighter cause in Brazil, Vettel was taken out by someone and pointed in the wrong direction) so there was no need to panick anyway.

    As a Vettelfan I certainly don’t tolerate what he said onto the radio “mark is too slow, get him out of the way”. Seb could’ve easaly said to the teamradio that rosberg was behind him and that mark was slowing him down, allthough mark was faster after that lap. But then Webber was also guilty saying multi 21. So both refered to team orders even asked for team orders. It’s all verry complicated and confusing when you are a fan and you’re trying to understand the other side of the story…

    And another thing, lets all sit back and have a life. I’m sure your husbands appreciate this… Seriously, what is everyones problem anyway? You can’t do anything about this AT ALL! You can’t be part of this situation. This is behind redbulls closed doors. Send as much mails to redbull racing, THEY WON’T LISTEN TO YOU! So go ahead and disagree as much as you can. You ain’t helping much… Instead of all this, you should just go to school/work/have a nice day/do some sport/pay attention to your family and concentrate on that rather then keep jamming around…

    Don’t get me wrong, I’ve nothing against you at all, but some people are so furious about this that they think that the wole world is suddenly going to die.

  70. Massa for me, outqualified the brilliant alonso again and battle through the race to bring the car home in the best possible position

  71. Vettel 2nd!!! You got to be kidding….

    Webber for me, closely followed by Rosberg.

  72. Webber for the start, the call on tyres and pacing the car perfectly. Also impressed with Grosjean, Bianchi and Vergne… a good race for France with Pic also impressive.

    1. @katederby

      What call on tyres? The “Stay Out!” he got from his team?

      1. Yep! The call to wait and not go too early like Vettel did… that cost him a lot.

  73. Vettel for sure, even though I find his attitude disgusting at times I won’t deny his ability. Alonso deserves a mention for retaking and holding second with a broken front wing, but I would like to know who made the call to keep him out :\. Bianchi also deserves a mention, excellent job considering the machinery he had to work with. One question, how did the red bulls manage to look so planted with what looked like a much smaller rear wing to other teams?

  74. It looks like I have missed voting in this poll.

    I thought it was a hard choice which is why I delayed voting and ending up not voting in time. For what it’s worth I think I would have voted for Bianchi.

    Bianchi impressed me on his debut in Australia and did again in Malaysia, of course we are only really comparing him to Chilton who is also a rookie and so also an unknown quantity.

    While Vettel had a good weekend and I would prefer it if there were no team orders and teams let their drivers race, the fact remains he did disobey team orders so I couldn’t vote for him as my driver of the weekend.

    Webber was hard done by but I feel that over the weekend Vettel did outperform him.

    I would also mention that Rosberg and Hulkenberg were also in the running for my vote and di Resta seemed to be set for a good result if it hadn’t been for his team’s problems.

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