Who’s winning the battle of the team mates halfway through 2013?

2013 F1 season

Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Sepang, 2013At the halfway point in the season the balance of power in each of the teams has become clear.

Five drivers have asserted clear superiority over their team mates so far this season. But the fight for supremacy at other teams is much tighter.

Here’s how each pair of team mates compares so far this season.

Too close to call

At Force India, Williams and Toro Rosso there’s very little to choose between the two drivers.

The contest is especially close at Force India, where 2011 team mates Paul di Resta and Adrian Sutil have been reunited. Di Resta has the all-important edge on points at the moment, but Sutil’s misfortunes earlier in the season have tipped the balance somewhat.

Valtteri Bottas is doing a particularly impressive job at Williams and is narrowly ahead of Pastor Maldonado in qualifying. Maldonado has scored the team’s only point so far this year.

Of the two Toro Rosso drivers it’s Daniel Ricciardo in contention for the Red Bull drive despite Jean-Eric Vergne having scored more points (in a less reliable car). Ricciardo is clearly ahead in qualifying but the pair are more closely matched on race results.

Force India: Paul di Resta vs Adrian Sutil

Williams: Pastor Maldonado vs Valtteri Bottas

Toro Rosso: Jean-Eric Vergne vs Daniel Ricciardo

Not much in it

Sergio Perez, McLaren, Silverstone, 2013Sergio Perez is doing a decent job staying on terms with Jenson Button at McLaren and the pair have had some spicy battles on the track. However it’s Button who’s delivering the most where it matters in terms of points.

At Mercedes Lewis Hamilton has the edge on all four measures but Nico Rosberg has had three race-ending car failures. Rosberg also has two wins to Hamilton’s one.

Rookie Giedo van der Garde is unsurprisingly losing out to the slightly more experienced Charles Pic but he has had some good performances, notably the last round in Hungary.

McLaren: Jenson Button vs Sergio Perez

Mercedes: Nico Rosberg vs Lewis Hamilton

Caterham: Charles Pic vs Giedo van der Garde

We have a winner

Kimi Raikkonen, Lotus, Nurburgring, 2013Sebastian Vettel, Nico Hulkenberg and Jules Bianchi have out-qualified their team mates at every race this year (though Bianchi was sidelined with a technical problem during qualifying in Monaco).

Vettel is yet to finish a race behind his team mate as well, though that was a matter of considerable controversy in Malaysia.

Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen are also enjoying comfortable superiority over their team mates. Felipe Massa began the season well – after Malaysia he’d out-qualified Alonso for four races in a row – but has slipped since then.

At Lotus Romain Grosjean has upped his game in recent races though at Silverstone and the Nurburgring he was ordered to let Raikkonen pass him.

Red Bull: Sebastian Vettel vs Mark Webber

Ferrari: Fernando Alonso vs Felipe Massa

Lotus: Kimi Raikkonen vs Romain Grosjean

Sauber: Nico Hulkenberg vs Esteban Gutierrez

Marussia: Jules Bianchi vs Max Chilton

Notes on the data

  • Qualified ahead: Which driver qualified ahead in sessions where both drivers set times
  • Finished ahead: Which driver finished ahead in race where both drivers were classified
  • Laps spent ahead: Which driver was ahead during laps when both were on the track
  • Team points: Proportion of total team points scored (where applicable)

To take a closer look at how each driver has performed relative to their team mate during 2013, see the driver form guides:

Over to you

Which drivers have impressed you most compared to their team mates this year? And who do you think will come back stronger in the season half of the season?

Have your say in the comments.

2013 F1 season

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Images © Red Bull/Getty, McLaren/Hoch Zwei, Lotus/LAT

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127 comments on Who’s winning the battle of the team mates halfway through 2013?

  1. katederby (@katederby) said on 9th August 2013, 20:08

    Good to see the fact Vergne is ahead of his team mate despite having worse reliability/bad luck, has been noted.
    Webber too has had some ridiculous bad luck; Australia, Canada, Britain, Germany, Hungary.
    Can’t wait for WEC.

  2. kbdavies (@kbdavies) said on 9th August 2013, 20:42

    I think it is a bit unfair applying the same standards to rookies like GVDG or guys who are new to the car/team like Perez and Hamilton. Surely, their performance must be assessed within the context in which it happens.
    To that effect, Lewis is doing an amazing job and Perez is giving Button a very good run for his money.
    The table does not show the true picture for guys like these.
    Webber and Massa on the other hand are doing extremely badly, and Chilton, who is being compared to another rookie is doing absolutely terrible.

  3. oliveiraz33 (@oliveiraz33) said on 9th August 2013, 21:21

    It’s true that vettel has been faster than webber… but is not by the margin that the graphic shows, because webber doesn’t have the same car vettel has… Redbull is always messing up with webber’s race, either for not preparing the car well (multiple DRS, gearbox, etc failiures), or not properly ataching wheels…

    Seems that redbull simply doesn’t stay focused in webber’s equipment as much as webber… and of course, what might count as mechanical errors, also can cause setup errors wich automaticly decreases pace… Because Mark has been in great for this last races… when mark is in good form, something goes wrong…

    • Jorge H. (@kobe08) said on 10th August 2013, 0:06

      RB used Webber’s car on YTD. Don’t know how it could influence reliability problems but what if DRS and KERS systems had some more milage on them due to these test sessions and some more aero tests their allowed to do.. what if Webber’s car does not have the latest new material as I believe Vettel’s has? :D might just be my conspiracy theory..

    • David-A (@david-a) said on 10th August 2013, 6:08

      @oliveiraz33 – Yeah, as soon as I saw “doesn’t have the same car”, that was the sign to tune out and not take you seriously.

    • TMF (@tmf42) said on 10th August 2013, 11:17

      yeah and in Silverstone they put Webber’ gearbox in Vettel’s car by accident. Not to mention the KERS problem Vettel had in Germany or during Monaco FP1 or his brake problem in Hungary FP1. It’s all just because the parts were labelled for Mark.
      I don’t get these theories around RB. The only team on the grid where 1 driver is clearly favored is Ferrari. As I see it, RB treats both drivers as equally as Merc or McLaren does. Lotus tries as much as the budget allows. Sometimes 1 driver has a bit of an edge but in general there is nothing unfair about it.

      • oliveiraz33 (@oliveiraz33) said on 12th August 2013, 20:42

        If I say that webber’s car is less relaible than vettel’s car, does it mean that vettel’s car can’t fail?
        I never saw ferrari stealing a front wing from massa to put in alonso’s car. Massa’s car seem to work well, but massa underperforms… Massa’s fast in the first laps of the race, then he just slows down in the midle of the race.

        I think everybody agree’s that mark webber’s car is less reliable than webber’s, if you don’t I think you have not been watching the same races as I did… it”s a fact…
        Wich as I said, didn’t make webber a better driver than vettel, Vettel for sure is faster than Webber, but I just pointed out that Webber isn’t as bad as statistics woudl say…

        I never buy consiparacy theorys that much, but since I saw the crashgate consipiracy turning real, now I believe in something… Who would say that a team would make a car crash on purpose (spend a bunch of money), to make a car win?

        Everybody knows that RB advisor Helmut Marko is a Vettel Fanboy, even blamed webber on Malasya’s incident when it was clear that was vettel’s fault… knowing the crahsgate, doesn’t seem so impossible, that Helmut Marko for example would pay a mechanic in secret to not faster webber’s wheel properly… Because webber is right now in great form, and is true that Webber right now has no respecto for vettel, and could ruin Vettel’s race if they got close…

        • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 12th August 2013, 21:51


          Helmut Marko for example would pay a mechanic in secret to not faster webber’s wheel properly

          What you’re suggesting is far worse than ‘Crashgate’. You are claiming that at least two people at Red Bull would be willing to put one of their drivers’ lives at risk, along with the lives of other team members, drivers, marshals and spectators. As dreadful as Crashgate was the dangerous action was committed by one person willingly putting themselves at risk, not inflicted on one entirely innocent party by multiple conspirators.

          Are you actually claiming Helmut Marko and some other party has done this? Or are you just idly suggesting it without really believing it to smear someone you don’t like?

          • oliveiraz33 (@oliveiraz33) said on 13th August 2013, 15:35

            I’m not claiming that he actualy did that, I’m claiming that it could be possible… I don’t see why it is worst than the crash gate… In the crashgate a pilot was told to crash the damn car… here is just not fit the wheel properly… how many crashes have you ever seen because the pit cew didn’t fasten the wheel properly? when they fail to atach the wheel in the pitbox, they realise that right away in the pit exit….

          • oliveiraz33 (@oliveiraz33) said on 13th August 2013, 15:37

            With redbull was 2 people… and in the crashgate how many they were? Briatore and piquet are only 1 person? and some more knew about that for sure, including Alonso….

          • Dave (@raceprouk) said on 13th August 2013, 15:48

            @oliveiraz33 – It’s one thing to make a mistake, quite another to deliberately plan such an event. How do you think the mechanics felt when that happened in Germany? I dearly hope for their sanity they never read comments like yours.

            I suggest you take a long, hard look at yourself before continuing on this line of debate.

          • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 13th August 2013, 16:43

            @oliveiraz33 I don’t think you’ve fully considered the implications of what you’re suggesting because it is far worse than ‘Crashgate’. Whatever your suspicions of Marko’s motives, to imply he would risk killing Webber and others to help Vettel’s title chances in some vague and indirect way is utterly appalling. I don’t take your comments seriously because I don’t think you can possibly have thought them through. I think you’ve got it in for Marko and will say anything negative about him without bothering to consider how realistic it is.

          • oliveiraz33 (@oliveiraz33) said on 14th August 2013, 22:45

            Please explain how it’s more risky?
            Didn’t Nelson Piquet Jr. had the risk of killing? how can it be less risk when they have planed that he would crash 100% sure, on the other hand, the probability of webber crashing is super super slim… Please tell me one situation of a driver crashing against a wall in F1 for a wheel falling off? None that I remember….
            I tell you, I would rather have a wheel that’s not properly fit than a team telling me “crash the car”… At least with a loose wheel, my chances of crashing were super slim, and without crash, how are you supoused to be killed? Did you saw piquet crash? it wasn’t a light crash as you should know…

            I’m sorry, but your theory as the probability’s totaly wrong…

          • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 15th August 2013, 7:51


            Please explain how it’s more risky?

            I didn’t say it was more dangerous, I said it was worse from an ethical point of view.

        • Dave (@raceprouk) said on 12th August 2013, 23:25


          Helmut Marko for example would pay a mechanic in secret to not faster webber’s wheel properly

          That is a truly horrific and disgusting thing to say. I will never understand how people can live with making comments this deplorable.

  4. katederby (@katederby) said on 10th August 2013, 7:14

    Even though I point out Webber’s bad luck/misfortunes it doesn’t mean I don’t think he and Vettel have the same car. It’s just conicidence that almost all (bar Silverstone) have been on one side of the garage. I’m just stating facts not ranting about an imagined conspiracy.

    • TMF (@tmf42) said on 10th August 2013, 11:43

      @katederby – fact is since 2009
      Vettel had 9 DNFs (6 due to technical problems + 1 puncture (Abu Dhabi 2011) + 2 accidents)
      Webber had 8 DNFs (1 due to technical problems (USA 2012) + 1 due to loose wheel (China 2013) + 6 due to accidents)

      If you really look for facts than it disproves that it happens only on Webber’s side – even if you include the races where a technical problem influenced qualifying or race results – it actually shows that Vettel had more bad luck in total. 2013 Webber is unluckier but it’s mid-season so it’s probably too early to consider this as fact that there is a difference in how RB prepares the cars.

      • katederby (@katederby) said on 10th August 2013, 16:01

        But we’re talking about 2013, that’s all. I never said it “it happens only on Webber’s side”!
        And as I already said, I don’t buy into the conspiracy theories. The fact that Vettel has had problems confirms my comment that it’s not favouritism but bad luck.
        Any way, in general it’s not just about DNFs but about problems that affect qualifying and hamper the driver during the race, even if he finishes.

      • oliveiraz33 (@oliveiraz33) said on 12th August 2013, 20:36

        showing the number of DNF’s is throwing sand to the readers eyes… because not every time you have problems you have a DNF… Webber did a bunch of qualify sessions and races with a faulty car, and that doesn’t show in your “DNF theory”…

        • David-A (@david-a) said on 13th August 2013, 4:05

          @oliveiraz33 – Vettel had car issues as well in the last two races, that didn’t cause DNFs. BTW, simply saying “a bunch” doesn’t prove anything.

          His DNF theory shows Vettel factually, to have had more race-ending car issues than MW. So explain why that should be swept under the carpet, while you accuse Marko of paying mechanics to sabotage a car, just because you think Webber has a few car issues?

          • David-A (@david-a) said on 13th August 2013, 4:06

            And this is directed at you João Oliveira, not Kate’s comments.

          • oliveiraz33 (@oliveiraz33) said on 13th August 2013, 15:44

            In hungarian GP, he had overheating problems because he was folowing for a long time the same car… Webber didn’t otherwise the would have similar problems… Once vettel got clear air, he got back to normal…

            If you saw the pre-show, you would see adrian newey saying that the cooling of the car as at it’s limit….

          • oliveiraz33 (@oliveiraz33) said on 13th August 2013, 15:58

            I’m not acusing anybody, it was an example… I never saw helmut doing nothing… But there is a fact that webber gets different treatment in the team…

            When I say Helmut Marko blaming webber for the crash in turkey, and other shamefull biased coments in public, it’s prety much clear that Helmut wants to put vettel image on top at any cost… even at the cost of his, and them team’s image…

            And no, webber doesn’t have “a few” car issues…. he has A LOT, especialy compared to the other “similar” car.

            -They stole webber’s front wing in the british GP to put in vettel’s car
            -Mark’s car is massively more unreliable than Vetel’s
            -RB advisor (Helmut Marko), makes public statements that clearly makes him biased on vettel)

            I find that a bit strange to see people backing a team doing this kind of strategy’s, (unless you’re German)
            And what I find realy disgusting is that I think Vettel is now seen as a “bad guy”, but i realy think that he was a good kid, but is all spoiled by PR and the team is making him look like a “bad guy” with all that favouritism…

            After this year’s Malasyan GP, it was clear that vettel doesn’t have his own voice… one day he says mark should have won, the other day says that he would do that again… it doesn’t make sense… Vettel’s image is geting dirty, and I think hes also a victim of some people behind him…

          • David-A (@david-a) said on 13th August 2013, 17:35

            They stole webber’s front wing in the british GP to put in vettel’s car

            It was already made clear at the time that the decision was made based on driver feedback with that wing. Vettel was faster and happier with the development than Webber.

            Mark’s car is massively more unreliable than Vetel’s

            There was a COTD that accurately highlighted the issues (both race ending and non-race ending) that the drivers suffered. Webber’s failures aren’t that much more frequent, they’re just over-emphasised.

            RB advisor (Helmut Marko), makes public statements that clearly makes him biased on vettel)

            He prefers Vettel, yes, but if anything, his comments are just calling it as it is, like the time he said Webber didn’t take pressure well. In 2010 MW crumbled towards the end of the season, same with 2012, when Mark was doing better than in 2010.

            And what I find realy disgusting is that I think Vettel is now seen as a “bad guy”, but i realy think that he was a good kid, but is all spoiled by PR and the team is making him look like a “bad guy” with all that favouritism…

            After this year’s Malasyan GP, it was clear that vettel doesn’t have his own voice… one day he says mark should have won, the other day says that he would do that again… it doesn’t make sense… Vettel’s image is geting dirty, and I think hes also a victim of some people behind him…

            To be fair, I’m not really a Red Bull fan either. But usually, if a team favours a driver, it’s their faster driver, or their better chance of the title.C Clearly, guys like Webber and Massa aren’t close to their teammates on ability. But for whatever reason, people have no issue with Alonso over Massa, yet with Vettel over Webber, it’s suddenly an issue for some people.

          • oliveiraz33 (@oliveiraz33) said on 14th August 2013, 22:55

            That’s **… how can webber not be happy if he got furious when they got the wing out of his car before the race? And in fact webber was the fastest guy in that weekend on the practise sessions… and in qualy, RB stole his wing to give vettel’s… and guess who got pole? Vettel….

            Check out the britsh GP and see how “happy” was webber about it… it also gave way to the famous radio comment “not bad for a nº2 driver…”… So happy….

            It’s true that teams favour the driver… but it was the first half of the season, redbull was in great form… no need to change wings…
            It was a bad decision by redbull, because if it wasn’t bad, it wouldn’t make the headline of the sports news… something like this that I quote: “vettel on british gp pole as underdog webber fumes over wing change”

            Simple… Webber was the fastest driver all weekend so far (remember, mark webber loves, and always has been super fast in silverstone), in Qualify they stole his wing to vettel, wich got pole with wing…. Mark webber ended up winning the race with the “worse” wing… So RB just favoured the slowest driver in that weekend…

            Don’t get me wrong… RB is a fantastic company, they are the company that most support young talents not only in F1, but in absolute everything, especialy in underated radical sports…. but in F1, I just don’t like them… (and I like Christian Horner, but I think he lacks power under the team)

  5. mhop (@mhop) said on 10th August 2013, 11:10

    This is a very poor use of statistics.

    The crude ‘qualified ahead’ statistic is particularly misleading. Take di Resta and Sutil for example. You suggests they are evenly matched but in reality Sutil has only outqualified di Resta ONCE in dry conditions: the last race, Hungary.

    • @mhop all statistics have limitations: if you were to go into every detail of where the data has inaccuracies then the article would be so long you may not be able to load it!

      That’s what the comments section is for: to elaborate upon the bare statistics and argue what they show.

  6. Todfod (@todfod) said on 10th August 2013, 12:26


    Really like the new graphs. Great job with that

  7. faulty (@faulty) said on 11th August 2013, 3:04

    Is it safe to assume that the worst drivers relative to their teammates are Maldonado and DiResta along with Button and Rosberg?

    These are drivers who stayed put on a no-major-changes turn of season and who should be expected to have a greater performance relative to their team mates, at least on this first half of the season.

    I think that Red Bull Racing, Ferrari and Lotus, can be marked with an asterisk, or rather, that different parameters should be used to weigh their driver pairings, as they are in the fight for either the WCC or the WDC, or both. And that affects the natural competition between their drivers, those teams have more to lose, and thus their drivers are not as free to race as let’s -sadly- say, Mclaren.

    By that same token, I think that towards the end of the year, Mercedes will be come to raceday under a different game script, once they’re mathematically out of the WDC but still in the hunt for the WCC.

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