Daniel Ricciardo, Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Jerez, 2014

Who will win the battle of the team mates in 2014?

2014 F1 season previewPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Almost every driver on the grid has a new team mate to measure himself against this year.

Which driver will come out on top at each team? Cast your vote below.

Red Bull: Sebastian Vettel vs Daniel Ricciardo

Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull, Bahrain, 2014After five years alongisde Mark Webber, during which time he comfortably had the beating of his team mate, Vettel is now sharing his team with another Australian.

Ricciardo is only the second Red Bull development driver to be promoted to their ‘A’ team since Vettel himself, so this will make for a barometer of the team’s talent-spotting abilities.

But the four-times champion will surely be expected to hold the upper hand over the newcomer.

Which Red Bull driver will finish ahead in the championship?

  • Sebastian Vettel (91%)
  • Daniel Ricciardo (9%)

Total Voters: 737

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Mercedes: Lewis Hamilton vs Nico Rosberg

Nico Rosberg, Mercedes, Bahrain, 2014One of only two unchanged driver pairings in the field this year. There wasn’t much to choose between them last year: Rosberg won two races to Hamilton’s one, though Hamilton scored more points.

Hamilton’s ultimate one-lap pace is a lot to deal with but Rosberg has the opportunity to turn the ever-increasing complexity of F1 races to his advantage.

Given Mercedes’ testing performance there could be a world championship riding on the outcome of this contest.

Which Mercedes driver will finish ahead in the championship?

  • Lewis Hamilton (56%)
  • Nico Rosberg (44%)

Total Voters: 740

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Ferrari: Fernando Alonso vs Kimi Raikkonen

Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari, Bahrain, 2014Ferrari’s strongest and most exciting driver line-up since Alain Prost and Nigel Mansell faced off against each other in 1990.

The dynamics of this contest are fascinating, and not just because it pits two world championships against each other at a team which has historically avoided having what its president refers to as “two roosters in the same hen house”.

Ferrari has been Alonso’s team since he arrived in 2010, but the re-hiring of the same driver he was brought in to replace sends a clear message about his position.

Which Ferrari driver will finish ahead in the championship?

  • Fernando Alonso (62%)
  • Kimi Raikkonen (38%)

Total Voters: 739

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Lotus: Romain Grosjean vs Pastor Maldonado

Pastor Maldonado, Lotus, Bahrain, 2014Two drivers who have reputations for being quick but somewhat reckless. Grosjean seriously raised his game in the second half of last year with some superb drives.

Maldonado, meanwhile, already has his first win under his belt but didn’t seem to offer anything constructive at the struggling Williams team last year. It would be wrong to see his PDVSA funding as the only reason he’s joined Lotus, but more promising and less well-heeled drivers were passed over for him.

Which Lotus driver will finish ahead in the championship?

  • Romain Grosjean (95%)
  • Pastor Maldonado (5%)

Total Voters: 735

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McLaren: Jenson Button vs Kevin Magnussen

Kevin Magnussen, McLaren, Jerez, 2014McLaren’s decision to drop Sergio Perez after a single season was one of the biggest surprises of last year’s ‘silly season’.

It would be too much to expect Magnussen, who steps up from Formula Renault 3.5, to get on terms with world champion Button in his first season. But wasn’t the same also said about Hamilton and Alonso the last time McLaren put a rookie in one of their cars?

Which McLaren driver will finish ahead in the championship?

  • Jenson Button (63%)
  • Kevin Magnussen (37%)

Total Voters: 737

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Force India: Nico Hulkenberg vs Sergio Perez

Nico Hulkenberg, Force India, Bahrain, 2014Perez will need to produce more of the kind of performances that made him stand out at Sauber in 2012 as he goes up against the highly-rated Hulkenberg, whom many believe is overdue a chance in a front-running car.

Which Force India driver will finish ahead in the championship?

  • Nico Hulkenberg (89%)
  • Sergio Perez (11%)

Total Voters: 737

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Sauber: Esteban Gutierrez vs Adrian Sutil

Adrian Sutil, Sauber, Bahrain, 2014Both these drivers both lost out to their team mates last year: Gutierrez was comprehensively routed by Hulkenberg while Sutil was somewhat closer to Paul di Resta.

Which Sauber driver will finish ahead in the championship?

  • Esteban Gutierrez (22%)
  • Adrian Sutil (78%)

Total Voters: 725

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Toro Rosso: Jean-Eric Vergne vs Daniil Kvyat

Daniil Kvyat, Toro Rosso, Bahrain, 2014Vergne has put a brave face on being passed over for the Red Bull seat for Ricciardo. Now his role is to be the benchmark for GP3 champion Kvyat.

Which Toro Rosso driver will finish ahead in the championship?

  • Jean-Eric Vergne (71%)
  • Daniil Kvyat (29%)

Total Voters: 723

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Williams: Valtteri Bottas vs Felipe Massa

Felipe Massa, Williams, Jerez, 2014A fascinating pairing of old hand with a sophomore driver considered a future star by some.

Given how emphatically Alonso beat Massa during their time as team mates, it won’t escape attention if Bottas can do the same. Having been part of the Williams family for several years, he has a sporting chance.

Which Williams driver will finish ahead in the championship?

  • Valtteri Bottas (42%)
  • Felipe Massa (58%)

Total Voters: 732

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Marussia: Jules Bianchi vs Max Chilton

Jules Bianchi, Marussia, Bahrain, 2014The other unchanged driver pairing from last year. Unlike Rosberg and Hamilton, it was a one-sided contest between these two last year, and it’s hard to imagine it ending any differently this time.

Which Marussia driver will finish ahead in the championship?

  • Jules Bianchi (94%)
  • Max Chilton (6%)

Total Voters: 726

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Caterham: Kamui Kobayashi vs Marcus Ericsson

Marcus Ericsson, Kamui Kobayashi, Caterham, Bahrain, 2014Ericsson’s GP2 record may be somewhat underwhelming but it’s no worse than that of Kobayashi, who never achieved the kind of success in the main series which he enjoyed in GP2 Asia.

Kobayashi has much more F1 experience, of course, and you’d expect that to tell over the course of a season, but he should prove a fair benchmark for Sweden’s new F1 driver.

Which Caterham driver will finish ahead in the championship?

  • Kamui Kobayashi (93%)
  • Marcus Ericsson (7%)

Total Voters: 726

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Images © Red Bull/Getty, Red Bull/Getty, Ferrari/Ercole Colombo, Lotus/LAT, McLaren/Hoch Zwei, Sauber, Williams/LAT, Caterham/LAT

197 comments on “Who will win the battle of the team mates in 2014?”

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  1. 1) VET
    2) HAM
    3) ALO
    4) GRO
    5) BUT
    6) HUL
    7) SUT
    8) KVY
    9) BOT
    10) BIA
    11) KOB

    I think Vettel will be quite close in qualifying, but will finish ahead more times. I think they’ll both get a win though… Ricciardo will get the first win, but Vettel will win 4 races.

    Hamilton will beat Rosberg, and I think more comfortably than most people think it will be.

    I honestly believe Alonso will beat Raikkonen quite comfortably as well. Raikkonen may just take the qualifying battle, but Alonso is relentless in the races, and I think he’ll want to prove he can race with someone strong in the team.

    I’ve gone for Grosjean for the Lotus battle, however I think if the car turns out to be one of the quickest, I think Maldonado would win (doubtful though, hence my decision).

    I think Magnussen will with the qualifying battle, but Button’s experience will be the key. It’ll be close between them and should Magnussen and Button both be retained for 2015, Magnussen will win that one.

    I think Hulkenburg will beat Perez, relatively comfortably, but Perez will get the only win, but only a couple of other podiums, with Hulkenburg on it a number of times.

    Sutil will win with experience, but will be close. Sutil will win in qualifying too.

    Kvyat was tough to put ahead of Vergne, but I don’t think Vergne can hold off the young talent. (Even though he did relatively well, if not better on a number of occasions than Ricciardo).

    I think Bottas will sweep Massa away.

    Bianchi will make a laughing stock of Chilton once again.

    Koboyashi will be closer with Ericsson, but Koboyashi will end well ahead after the second half of the season.

  2. Literally nobody believes in Perez beating Hulkenberg…

    1. we’ll see……

  3. Vettel – I think this one is pretty obvious: Vettel is a four time champion who won a race I’m his first full season of competition. Ricciardo is a good-but-not great driver, although he may give Seb a run in qualifying.

    Rosberg – I was deeply impressed by him last season, so I feel he has a very good shot at beating Hamilton. However, the latter seems to have an extra degree of comfort which was lacking last year.

    Alonso – yes, Räikkönen is a world champion. But Alonso is a clearly better world champion. I’m honestly expecting a Alonso to be quite comfortable, provided he doesn’t have a resurgence of the attitude which plagued him at McLaren.

    Grosjean – Maldonado is a bloody quick driver on his day, but his days are too few and far between. He needs a steep increase in consistency (as Grosjean had last year) to be able to put up a challenge.

    Button – I think experience will prevail on this one, but if Magnussen is to verify his early testing hype expect me to be proven wrong.

    Hülkenberg – Hülkenberg both knows the team better and has shown more promise. His skill spans between both qualifying and the races, whereas Perez only seems to posses notable ability in the latter.

    Sutil – I can’t bang on enough about how dull their line-up is. Sutil due to consistency – I shall write no more out of sheer boredom.

    Vergne – Kvyat has more promise, but I think he will still be in need of some considerable refinement. Vergne’s ability in the races nudges him ahead on this one.

    Bottas – Massa should be resurgent, but I think he may have to go home slightly disappointed. Even when Maldonado was quick, Bottas was quicker – that speaks very well for him.

    Bianchi – need I elaborate? Chilton barely even deserves to be in F1, Bianchi has at times been quite phenomenal. Unless Chilton continually benefits from his apparent “skill” in finishing every race, this is the most one-sided battle of them all.

    Kobayahi – previous F1 experience vs rookie error-proneness will seal this battle I believe. For me otherwise Ericsson is a completely unknown quantity.

    1. Absolutely spot on! Although Merc could go either way in my book, a lot depends on who gets the better start/reliability to the year.

      I agree that Alonso will quite comfortably beat Kimi. Not thrash him by any means, but it won’t be close.

      Bottas simply has to beat Massa if he is all he’s hyped up to be, I suspect he will. He has a steeliness in races about him that Felipe maybe doesn’t have anymore.

      1. @danieru thanks :)

        Mercedes was definitely the most difficult one to predict I felt: as you said, it would be easy for it to swing either depending on reliability and gaining that crucial early momentum. I just hope Mercedes leave it fully up to the drivers to decide their own fate – I wasn’t too happy about Malaysia in their case (nor indeed Red Bull’s)!

        On a sub-note, noticed a couple of blatant typos:

        won a race I’m in his first…
        may give Seb a run [for his money] in qualifying

  4. Red Bull:

    It won’t surprise fans if Seb comes out on top in the battles of the Bulls although one can expect Daniel to grow substantially as a driver and wouldn’t be surprising if he pushes Seb harder than Mark did in his final years but it’s Seb who maintains the advantage.


    Lewis came in as the star driver and even after a year he is considered to be the man heading the Mercedes charge but Nico’s stock has been rising since 2010. However, Nico still haven’t created a lasting impression on the minds of the people in general. It’s a general assumption that Nico is a smarter driver of the two but Lewis has an arsenal of weapons and probably come out on top in 2014 although Nico will push him extremely hard.

    With Ross Brawn out of the picture, it might be that Toto and Paddy might struggle to have a relatively stronger impact on the team as well as the drivers.


    Strongest driver pairing of all considering the WDCs amongst them. Kimi would be extra motivated and would be working harder since Fernando is alongside him. On the other hand, I don’t expect Fernando to be in the same comfort with Ferrari that he was since 2010. This won’t be surprising if Fernando will have his last season with the scarlet if they fail to give him a car good enough for the title contention.


    Seems like a lost team at the moment with so many members of the team and no team leader to lead them. We all know why Pastor is sitting in that car. It’s good that Romain has improved and in 2014, he’ll only get better while I see Pastor becoming more mature at the team but might find it hard to get rid of the ‘reckless’ tag. Romain will come out on top as he is ready to learn from errors unlike….


    I believe that Kevin will be pretty much on it from Melbourne itself. Although Jenson is good, he’ll have a hard time with the Danish rookie. He seems mature and has a certain intensity which I haven’t seen in a rookie in a long time.

    1. Force India:

      Another interesting line up. Checo will be willing to show McLaren what he can do and there would certainly be bitterness in his heart for McLaren and shall do well at FI however he has a team mate who is tipped as a future champion by many. Checo will have a hard time against Nico which might not do well for his career in regards to finding a top drive again.


      Perhaps the line up which fans are least excited about but let’s look at it from the fact that Adrian might prove to be a safe pair of hands (required in 2014 at least) with not much scope of growing as a driver substantially. He is a typical midfield driver. Esteban meanwhile has better potential like he showed in the 2nd half of 2013 in a few races. He will only grow in 2014.


      Jean Eric might be heading into his final season for STR (the longest serving yet with Buemi). He has to prove himself substantially against rookie Kvyat who many consider to have got the seat not purely on merit. Jean Eric has to break out of the Red Bull circle to get a seat in 2015 for which he needs some really strong showing.


      Perhaps the most difficult lineup to predict but certainly a lineup full of potential. A refreshed Felipe brings in a wealth of experience with Valteri showing signs of potential in 2013. If they have a fast (and reliable) car underneath them which seems like then they’ll be right up there with the best.


      Jules’ performances last year were smoking(ly) hot but Max deserved credit to bring the car home in every race in 2013. However he couldn’t match Jules’ pace and 2014 might not be any different.


      Kamui is back but for how long? He’ll need some great performances to make feel his presence and he can do that where Marcus is perhaps the driver we can’t really predict how well he might go.

  5. Surprised so many people think Massa will beat Bottas.

  6. I’ll just list the two where I differed from the majority:

    Kvyat – I think he’s a real rough diamond if his quickly-up-to-pace FP1 outings from last year are anything to go by. He came very close to both Jev and Ricciardo in a very short time. I’m sure with a little more time, he’ll easily get ahead of the former (he would beat Daniel as well, but he’s no longer in the picture, of course).

    Bottas – As much as I like Massa’s incredible work-rate and reckon that it will shine through once again in this new environment, I think Bottas is of the same mould as Kvyat, a real talent and a likely future champion – he wrung 110% out of his dog FW35 last year on a number of occasions (those two quali sessions come to mind principally), usually beating the more experienced Maldonado on pace.

  7. How anyone thinks Rosberg will beat Hamilton this year is beyond me – irrespective of Rosberg’s much vaunted, but less witnessed intelligence.
    Lewis beat Rosberg last year, and the gap would be much higher even when corrected for DNF’s and mechanical failures. He beat Rosberg in a team Rosberg has been in for the past 3yrs, driving a car with essentially the same DNA for the past 3yrs, whilst going into a team with a whole new way of doing things, new procedures and processes, new personnel, strange car, brake/ balance issue and being unhappy with the car’s characteristics for most of the season.

    This year is a LEVEL playing field for both drivers, most of the issues mentioned above would have been mitigated or resolved by now. With the new regulations focusing on energy recovery and fuel conversation, qualifying position is far more important than it has ever been.
    Lewis will beat Rosberg, and will do it far more convincingly than he did last season. Whilst Rosberg is indeed a fast driver, he is not even close to Lewis in terms of qualifying or race pace.

  8. Can we say the Lewis/Nico vote is slightly bias because of the majority of English people on this forum?

    1. Could also be due to the fact that Lewis is a former WDC, runner up. But I could be wrong, you know :)

    2. @ardenflo Just because Lewis is English, it doesn’t necessarily mean that people will automatically assume he will beat Rosberg, otherwise Chilton would be a shoe-in to beat Bianchi and Button would be light-years ahead of Magnussen.

      1. I don’t agree. Because Lewis is a proper contender. Button is not and we all want to believe in this danish rookie monster-talent that is Magnussen. Even the British know Chilton is a shoe more than he is a racer.

        I’m not saying every brit will vote Lewis but I’m 100% sure he gets a lot of sympathy votes from people who are doubting.

        1. They were well matched last year, with Hamilton arguably slightly better despite being new to the team. Considering that and him also having greater career success, I’d be surprised if the votes have been influenced much by that- seeing as they’re so close. Also, although people from the UK (rather than just English) are the most prominent group to visit the site, I don’t think they are the majority (according to stats Keith has published in the past).

  9. Let me roll the dice. My choices.

    My opinion:

    Rosberg [ My Dark horse for the WDC !!!!! ]
    Kimi [ My Dark horse in the Inter team battle !!! ]
    Magnussen [ maybe Mclaren has done a good media & Publicity job yet Something tells me that this kid is right up there !!!!!! ]

  10. A lot of people are backing Felipe here. He has disappointed the last 5 years and Bottas is only getting better and better. I think he’ll hand Massa another beat down.

  11. Red Bull – Vettel
    Mercedes – Rosberg
    Ferrari – Alonso
    Lotus – Grosjean
    Mclaren – Magnussen
    Force India – Hulkenberg
    Sauber – Sutil
    Williams – Massa
    Toro Rosso – Vergne
    Marussia – Bianchi
    Caterham – Kobayashi

  12. I pretty much agreed with general consensus on my votes except for 2 – I think Magnussen should beat Button and Bottas should beat Massa

    Vergne and Kvyat might be pretty close too

  13. Red Bull – Dan’s a great qualifier, but his race performances are less impressive, Vettel’s a bit of a beast, I think he’ll win it easily.

    Mercedes – Rosberg’s my tip for the world championship, he impressed me so much last year. Almost as fast as Lewis, and with the type of racing needed in the new era, a human computer like Rosberg will make less mistakes, but be slower. Think 1984

    Ferrari. Alonso consistently delivers miracles in crap cars, he’s just relentless. If the car’s a dog, he’ll win it easily, if it’s a great car Kimi will be closer, but Fernando’s RELENTLESS. I just hope he doesn’t loose his head like 07, that would be his only undoing.

    Lotus – Grosjean’s grown up, Maldonado is a petulant, spoilt (29 year old) child who can’t.

    McLaren – Button’s experience will win the points battle, but Kevin looks fast.

    Force India – If Hulkenberg doesn’t beat Perez I’ll be very suprised, simply a much better driver.

    Sauber – I used to like Adrian, but Di Resta crushed his last year, why isn’t he at Sauber? Bleeagh, boring, Sutil on experience.

    Toro Rosso – I went for Kvyat, lots of potential, Vergne still a crap qualifier.

    Williams – Like McLaren, experience will win but it will be close.

    Marussia – Why is Chilton in F1? God that guy’s slow. Bianchi, easily, if he doesn’t I eat my laptop.

    Caterham – KK, easily.

  14. Lewis and Nico will run each other close. Raikkonen will switch off in half of the races and Magnussen will be more than a handful for Button.

  15. Wow, didn’t see that coming although voited the same myself, still quite a margin! And Maldonado is a GP winner.

    Romain Grosjean (94%)
    Pastor Maldonado (6%)

  16. The complexity of the new regs leading to big differences between the drivers is way way way overstated. It might be a factor for a couple of races, but the pit wall ill just be spouting tips and commands through the radio, as they have for years. Too much fuel being used, message and tell the driver to take it easier, better yet tell them to tweak settings on the steering wheel so they still drive to their maximum, but maybe the car is a bit down on power.

    The two ERS adding complexity? Again, to an extent, but primarily for the engineers. Again, the drivers will be receiving specific instructions from the walls on how to drive and where, and what knobs to turn to help the car. I just don’t get this complexity thing. They said the same with KERS and DRS originally, it really baffles me.

    If the teams didn’t have about 100people back at the factory with real-time car data, as well as their trackside team and the radio, then I’d agree. But with all that, the drivers will get used to it in absolutely no time

  17. Red Bull – Vettel, easily.
    Mercedes – Hamilton, by a greater margin that in 2013. He knows the team better now and this car will suit him more than 2013’s.
    Ferrari – Alonso, by a healthy margin, no question.
    Lotus – Grosjean, just. I wouldn’t be surprised to see some of his 2012, early 2013 clumsiness seeping through.
    McLaren – Magnussen, just. Button will keep honest in races, but Magnussen will have more standout performances, including a win.
    Force India – Hulkenberg, easily.
    Sauber – Sutil, just.
    Toro Rosso – Kvyat, easily. Kvyat looked impressive in FP1s last season. He’ll put the final nail in the coffin of Vergne’s F1 career.
    Williams – Massa, just. It will be pretty even in qualifying. Massa’s experience will help him and I’m expecting him to have the stronger race pace.
    Marussia – Bianchi, easily.
    Caterham – Ericsson, just. Kobayashi will beat him over the season, but Caterham won’t score a point and Ericsson will have the higher finishing position at one race, thus finishing higher in the standings.

  18. C’mon now who voted for Chilton?

    1. Not me, but whoever did, they may be a little bit wrong!

  19. Carl Craven
    8th March 2014, 22:25

    Mercedes achilles heel might be not favoring one man over the other, they may end up squabbling and losing out altogether. That is where they will miss Brawn.

    At least it should be interesting.

  20. Vettel, Grosjean, Hulkenberg, Bianchi, Sutil, Kobayashi will beat their team-mates easily

    Others are more difficult with the most difficult of these is the Merc contest wihich will be ascloseasthat IMO, but Lewis will prevail.

    Williams and Ferrari are tied for second closest contest. While I like Kimi a lot, i don’t think on current form he can be a match for Alonso over a season. Bottas is the better driver of the Williams pair but given Massa’s experience advantage it’ll be close

    I might be in the minority here, but I believe Magnussen will beat Button. Won’t be easy but won’t be as hard as the above three cases either. KM has maturity that belies his experience(lack of), and natural speed in abundance. a bit of 2007 repeat situation indeed with the fact that Button is no Alonso negated by the fact that KM had had significantly less mileage pre-debut than LH

    Lastly, the Toro Rosso case. I believe it will be relatively close but not as close as some who don’t rate JEV believe it’ll be. Kvyat is a huge talent but had even less mileage than KM. Won’t be easy whatsoever for him to take on JEV whose natural style will be much more suited to these cars over the previous ones

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