Positive rating for first race of 2013

2013 Australian Grand Prix Rate the Race resultPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Start, Melbourne, 2013The 2013 F1 season got off to a promising start in Australia with Kimi Raikkonen moving up from seventh on the grid to win the season-opener.

It also began the sixth year of Rate the Race on F1 Fanatic. The Australian Grand Prix at Melbourne’s Albert Park circuit was viewed very positively by most readers:

I went for 8/10. Could have been better had both Mercedes and Force India been better at strategy calls. And off course Ferrari cutting back Massa was not all that great a move, he might even have got closer to Raikkonen than Alonso did.

But what we did see was a worthy start to the year. We saw Red Bull are vulnerable on race pace, Massa is better than his team allows, Mercedes promising, Lotus good, and clever, and Sutil in the Force India very good, but have to learn a bit of strategy. Lovely race.

Multiple race leaders, different strategies, overtaking galore, non-stop action. An incredible enthralling and entertaining race. Only thing that could’ve made it better was a true battle for the win at the finish.

Not everyone agreed, however:

I?ve gone for 6/10: a lot of jumbling of positions and variety of strategy, but it just seemed to lack that something.
Max Jacobson (@vettel1)

This is the third year featuring the combination of Pirelli tyres and DRS which is designed to create spectacular racing. This has never failed to generate debate and a range of differing views:

I applaud Pirelli for acknowledging that the tyres are important in producing exciting races and their campaign to produce tyres that challenge the drivers to balance the way they push their cars around the track, but after seeing Sutil?s Super Softs immediately melt under him and ruin what was a great performance I hope we don?t see the Super Softs compound too much over the course of the season.

There?s so many negative comments about the tyres but at least they?re the same for every single driver. Each driver can control the way they drive, and thus degrade their tyres, and push/conserve where needed. I really hoped for a weekend where they would have DRS completely disabled just to see one weekend where drivers did not have the option of waiting for the DRS zone to make their ??pass??.

DRS often forces drivers to maintain the gap until the checkpoint so they do not get re-passed on the DRS zone, to think of how many potential exciting moves the drivers have decided not to make because of this unfortunate fact.

Pirelli tyres, love them or hate them, are still much better for “the show” than DRS will ever be.

Finally ?ǣ after two long years, DRS worked the way it is supposed to work! We didn?t see many passes on the pit straight, but the trailing cars were able to close the gap. Then in the shorter DRS zone they were able to just get alongside the leading car and sometimes managed to pass him. I?m still not a fan of DRS, but if it will work the way it worked today for the rest of the season, I hereby promise I will not complain about DRS any more.

Unfortunately this reminded me of a refueling-era race.

Most of the racing and position changes at the front was been done in the pits rather than on the track.

Raikkonen drove a good race but it was utterly deflating to see all the passing that determined the win done via Raikkonen jumping everyone in the pits without having to race them closely on track.

The surprise appearance of Adrian Sutil at the head of the field also drew comment:

To me, the Sutil factor in this race, more killed it than added to it. I mean, Sutil was there in the lead pack since the first stops, mixing the leaders. It really looked like he could have been there until the end. But his last change to Super Soft, was so terrible. The only good thing his strategy produced, was impending the leaders for way too long, and then fall back behind at once.

Nothing against his driving though, of course he was doing his own race, so congratulations to him. But for the leading pack it wasn?t that great, we could have seen a different story, with more close battles for the win, in my honest opinion.

And while most said they enjoyed the race, others were frustrated by organisational lapses:

8/10. Very entertaining race, but a closer finish could have made the last ten laps better. Feels like the teams came prepared but FIA and FOM dropped the ball.

FOM with the coverage ?ǣ very little midfield/backmarker action shown. For example: Vergne was up in seventh at one stage and doing fastest laps and it happened off-screen.

FIA for not finding a solution to the telemetry issue and having blue flags shown to random cars.

Australian Grand Prix Rate the Race results

Race Average score out of ten
2008 Australian Grand Prix 7.609
2009 Australian Grand Prix 7.937
2010 Australian Grand Prix 8.638
2011 Australian Grand Prix 6.751
2012 Australian Grand Prix 7.662
2013 Australian Grand Prix 7.698

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2013 Australian Grand Prix

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Image ?? Lotus/LAT