Vote for your Bahrain GP driver of the weekend

2014 Bahrain Grand Prix

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

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

Bahrain Grand Prix driver-by-driver

Red Bull

Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull, Bahrain International Circuit, 2014Sebastian Vettel – For the second time this year technical problems with his car during Q2 hindered his attempts to get into the final ten, as did his spin at turn two during final practice. Gambled on using medium tyres for his first stint and gained ground despite a DRS glitch and poor straight line speed (though his was higher than Alonso’s). Let Ricciardo past when ordered to, got back ahead of him then was passed once more after the Safety Car period, ending up sixth.

Daniel Ricciardo – Qualified a surprising third, then was relegated ten places by his Malaysia grid penalty. After passing Magnussen he lobbied the pit wall for help getting ahead of Vettel, which was granted, though he dropped back behind during the pit stops. But having got his medium tyre stint out of the way mid-race he re-passed Vettel after the Safety Car period, helped himself to another place from Hulkenberg and was poised to strike at Perez when the chequered flag came don, taking fourth.

Mercedes

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Bahrain International Circuit, 2014Nico Rosberg – Having lagged behind Hamilton in practice Rosberg seized the initiative in qualifying, taking pole for the second year in Bahrain. He had the pace to win from there but Hamilton got ahead at the start and try as he might Rosberg just couldn’t make a move stick, even with the benefit of softer tyres in the final stint.

Lewis Hamilton – Headed every practice session and looked a sure thing for pole when qualifying began. But wasn’t as comfortable in his car when the competitive sessions began and two mistakes in Q3 let Rosberg in for pole. Hamilton made a better start, however, and by parrying each and every one of Rosberg’s attacks he pulled off a remarkable win.

Ferrari

Fernando Alonso – As expected the Ferrari wanted for straight-line speed in Bahrain but Alonso seemed particularly vulnerable in the race, giving away 13kph to his team mate and 21kph to the Mercedes. A gradual loss of power throughout qualifying left him ninth on the grid, and although a rapid start moved him up to seventh he was soon demoted by Hulkenberg. Was grateful for the chance to save fuel afford by the Safety Car period, and crossed the finishing line back in ninth place, one arm aloft.

Kimi Raikkonen – Lined up fifth on the grid but never lapped inside the top six. It didn’t help matters that he was hit by Magnussen – again – on the opening lap. “The lack of aero downforce and speed on the straight meant overtaking was complicated,” he said, after following his team mate home in tenth.

Lotus

Start, Bahrain International Circuit, 2014Romain Grosjean – Narrowly beat Maldonado into Q2 and although he fell back at the start he was quickly able to pass the Caterhams and Bianchi. Was having a good race with Gutierrez until his team mate took him out of the equation, and brought the car home 12th, pleased at his first trouble-free weekend of the year.

Pastor Maldonado – Posted his first finish for Lotus but was fortunate to make it that far after crashing into Gutierrez while leaving the pits after his second stop on lap 39. Blamed Gutierrez for the collision but few saw it that way, least of all the stewards, who issued a trio of penalties including a three-point licence endorsement.

McLaren

Jenson Button – Took sixth on the grid, saying the team had “done a more or less perfect job” up to that point. The race began promisingly and had it not been for a clutch failure on his car Button reckoned he could have passed the Force Indias for third.

Kevin Magnussen – Lost vital ground at the start by making contact with Raikkonen and never really got back into the race from there. Also retired with a clutch problem.

Force India

Sergio Perez, Force India, Bahrain International Circuit, 2014Nico Hulkenberg – Said failing to get beyond Q2 was his own fault after running wide at turn 11, losing several tenths of a second. But he quickly made up for it after the start, gaining three places on lap one and then passing Alonso. He lost out to Perez while scrapping with Massa, and an attempt to claim the position back after the Safety Car period didn’t work out. Ricciardo then bumped him down to fifth before the end of the race.

Sergio Perez – His first start for Force India in Australia was ruined on lap one and he didn’t even make it to the start in Malaysia. But it was third time lucky for Perez, who after taking fourth on the grid was disappointed he wasn’t closer to the front. Brake warm-up had been a problem for him in qualifying and it was at the start as well, where he locked up heavily at turn one. But from there he took the fight to the Williams drivers, passing Massa twice to gain the track position he needed to make a two-stop strategy work. He put one over his team mate as well, which proved valuable at the end of the race when he had just enough in hand to claim his first pole position since 2012.

Sauber

Adrian Sutil – Picked up his first penalty points of the year by impeding Grosjean during qualifying. Having failed to make it out of Q1 he was then relegated to last place. In the race he was the victim of some questionable driving by Bianchi, the pair making contact and turns one and four as the Marussia driver tried to pass. “He was driving aggressively for the whole race and pushed me off at the start,” said Sutil. “With his move he destroyed mine as well as his own race.”

Esteban Gutierrez – Out-qualified his team mate but looked set for an afternoon scrapping with the Lotuses outside of the points positions when he was hit by Maldonado. A hospital visit was required after his Sauber flipped over but he was given the all-clear.

Toro Rosso

Jean-Eric Vergne – Said Maldonado’s driving was “absolutely mental” when they tangled on the first lap, adding “that guy tried to kill me” as he made his way back to the pits. The damage ruined his race, as he explained afterwards: “I got squeezed more and more and when he realised I was about to overtake him anyway, he just closed the door. That is why our wheels touched and my car took off, out of control. Both rear wing and floor got heavily damaged with a huge loss of aero performance and it was just not possible to continue my race.” Before the race began he revealed he’d gone to hospital between the first two races of the year as a result of trying to reduce hid body weight to compete with his lighter team mate.

Daniil Kvyat – Believe he could have made it into Q3 but didn’t make the cut and the story of his race was similar – he finished 11th, just outside the points.

Williams

Felipe Massa, Williams, Bahrain International Circuit, 2014Felipe Massa – A blistering start from seventh on the grid had him up to third by turn one. But the Williams was asking too much of its rear tyres and Massa found himself under increasing pressure from the Force India drivers. Even without the Safety Car period he was likely to drop behind the Red Bulls, and leaving his medium tyre stint to last reduced his chances of overtaking them.

Valtteri Bottas – Out-qualified Massa but was harder on the tyres than his team mate and ended the race looking at his rear wing again.

Marussia

Jules Bianchi – A pair of rash moves on Sutil spoiled his race, though he blamed his rival for the contact: “I had the chance to get ahead of him and I was slightly ahead going into turn one, but he turned in on me and crashed into me, which punctured my left rear.” The floor damage and loss of time ensured he wouldn’t play a role even in the battle for the lowest positions.

Max Chilton – Notched up his 22nd finish and took 13th place, helping Marussia to retake tenth from Caterham in the constructors’ championship.

Caterham

Kamui Kobayashi – Looked racy in the early stages of the race but even after the Safety Car period he still needed to conserve fuel which kept him from attacking in the final laps.

Marcus Ericsson – Briefly held 17th before an MGU-H failure ended his race.

Qualifying and race results summary

Driver Started Gap to team mate Laps leading team mate Pitted Finished Gap to team mate
Sebastian Vettel 10th +0.393s 44/57 2 6th +5.39s
Daniel Ricciardo 13th -0.393s 13/57 2 4th -5.39s
Lewis Hamilton 2nd +0.279s 54/57 2 1st -1.085s
Nico Rosberg 1st -0.279s 3/57 2 2nd +1.085s
Fernando Alonso 9th +0.624s 50/57 3 9th -0.867s
Kimi Raikkonen 5th -0.624s 7/57 3 10th +0.867s
Romain Grosjean 16th -0.009s 27/57 3 12th -19.66s
Pastor Maldonado 17th +0.009s 30/57 3 14th +19.66s
Jenson Button 6th -0.325s 40/40 2 17th
Kevin Magnussen 8th +0.325s 0/40 3
Nico Hulkenberg 11th +0.369s 11/57 2 5th +4.587s
Sergio Perez 4th -0.369s 46/57 2 3rd -4.587s
Adrian Sutil 22nd +0.273s 0/17 2
Esteban Gutierrez 15th -0.273s 17/17 2
Jean-Eric Vergne 14th +0.141s 0/18 2
Daniil Kvyat 12th -0.141s 18/18 3 11th
Felipe Massa 7th +0.264s 34/57 3 7th -0.611s
Valtteri Bottas 3rd -0.264s 23/57 3 8th +0.611s
Jules Bianchi 19th -0.603s 11/56 4 16th Not on same lap
Max Chilton 21st +0.603s 45/56 3 13th Not on same lap
Kamui Kobayashi 18th -0.79s 25/33 2 15th
Marcus Ericsson 20th +0.79s 8/33 2

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 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix weekend?

  • Sebastian Vettel (0%)
  • Daniel Ricciardo (17%)
  • Nico Rosberg (3%)
  • Lewis Hamilton (49%)
  • Fernando Alonso (0%)
  • Kimi Raikkonen (0%)
  • Romain Grosjean (0%)
  • Pastor Maldonado (1%)
  • Jenson Button (0%)
  • Kevin Magnussen (0%)
  • Sergio Perez (26%)
  • Nico Hulkenberg (2%)
  • Esteban Gutierrez (0%)
  • Adrian Sutil (0%)
  • Jean-Eric Vergne (0%)
  • Daniil Kvyat (0%)
  • Felipe Massa (0%)
  • Valtteri Bottas (0%)
  • Jules Bianchi (0%)
  • Max Chilton (0%)
  • Kamui Kobayashi (0%)
  • Marcus Ericsson (2%)

Total Voters: 838

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2014 Bahrain Grand Prix

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Images © Red Bull/Getty, Mercedes/Daimler, Force India, Williams/LAT

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123 comments on Vote for your Bahrain GP driver of the weekend

  1. DaveD (@daved) said on 7th April 2014, 20:30

    Had to give it to HAM. He fought off Nico on that last stint with the harder tires. That was an epic battle by both drivers.

  2. Mayank (@mjf1fan) said on 7th April 2014, 20:41

    Voted for Ricciardo. Qualified really well and had a great race. He is really shining in that car and keeping his critic’s mouth shut who said he will be too easy for Vettel.

    Other mentions – Hamilton, Perez, Hulkenberg and Chilton.

  3. Brian (@bforth) said on 7th April 2014, 20:48

    Hamilton has to be my pick for DOTW. Had he fended off Rosberg with option tyres it would be a different story, but handling his teammate while using primes in spite of two DRS zones was simply astonishing. I thought he was dead in the water once the safety car came out. It was a world class drive, especially how he reclaimed the lead exiting turn 1 so many times.

    After that, Perez deserves runner-up. His aggressive overtaking completely overwhelmed Massa when Hulkenberg couldn’t make it happen, and he showed great control in not collecting his teammate during their long side-by-side battle. Hulkenberg gets special mention too, as does the hard-charging Daniel Ricciardo. Plenty of good drives around them too, but those were the great ones.

  4. DawnPiper (@dawnpiper) said on 7th April 2014, 20:55

    Hamilton raced his socks off! Nico should have won and he knows it, but Lewis had an answer for his every move. Nico and his side of the garage did everything they could and the safety car should have sealed the deal, but Lewis simply wouldn’t give it up.
    Perez was very impressive but it was a shame that the Williams’ strategy was Maldonado’d.

  5. PJA (@pja) said on 7th April 2014, 21:00

    I voted for Hamilton.

    He lost the lead he had built up after the safety car and with Rosberg on the quicker tyres and with DRS, I thought there was no way Hamilton would win the race but he managed with some great driving.

    Second would be Perez, it looks like he could be back to his best after his year at McLaren, and if he can maintain this sort of form for the rest of the season I think he and Hulkenberg at Force India could make one of the best line-ups on the grid.

    Third would be Ricciardo he continues to make an impressive start to his Red Bull career.

  6. kbdavies (@kbdavies) said on 7th April 2014, 21:09

    There is only one viable contender for this – Messrs Lewis Hamilton; though a special mention goes to Perez, Ricciardo and Hulkenberg. A shout out to Rosberg too for pressuring him all the way.

    If anyone was ever still in doubt, Lewis is silencing his critics and cementing his reputation as the best racer in F1. His best performances always seem to come at a time when F1 most needs a boost – as he did when he single highhandedly demolished the “Lack of overtaking in F1″ criticism in 2010 (just before the advent of DRS); earning plaudits from Norbert Haug and Ross Brawn at the time.
    His race win in Bahrain was a sublime example of race craft, pure speed, defensive skill and absolute grit. Simply put, he won a race where all the odds were against him to win.

    Love him or hate him, he is simply the most exciting driver to watch in F1 and has been since he graced the sport in 2007. Even in his worst year (2011), he was still the most exciting driver to watch; albeit for the wrong reasons. A well deserved win indeed.

  7. Imre (@f1mre) said on 7th April 2014, 21:13

    When Rosberg wins: It’s just the car, did nothing special.
    When Hamilton wins by 25 seconds ahead of Rosberg: brilliant, DOTW.
    When Hamilton wins by 1 second ahead of Rosberg: brilliant, DOTW.

    When Rosberg wins: let’s take a look at the drivers behind him.
    When Hamilton wins: who cares about anyone else.

    Okay, I’m on a British website…

    • LosD (@losd) said on 7th April 2014, 21:33

      Sooo… Let me see:
      1st race: Rosberg had no competition, the only one in a matching car was out.
      2nd race: Hamilton killed the matching car.
      3rd race: Hamilton WAS ahead by quite a margin, but the SC destroyed that, leaving him with slow tires against the matching car on fast tires. Still kept him behind.

      I CANNOT see how you think those are comparable. And for the record, I’m a Dane, not British.

      But let’s just call it nationalism if it makes you feel any better.

    • Nick (@npf1) said on 7th April 2014, 22:34

      I really wonder if the URL changes to F1Fanatic.es when Alonso wins a race or finishes in second while Vetter dominated all weekend.

    • RV (@zenren) said on 8th April 2014, 3:57

      | Okay, I’m on a British website…

      Let me rephrase your actual thoughts – “this is not a German website.” You are right in that sense.

      I’m not British and am not a Hamilton fan either, far from both. I don’t see Rosberg doing anything extraordinary in the three races so far except that good lap in Q3 this weekend. In a way, it was probably Rosberg’s incompetence to pass with tyre advantage and DRS that handed Hamilton the DOTW! Put Rosberg in a Force India and you wouldn’t see him anywhere near the top 5.

  8. robbiepblake (@driftin) said on 7th April 2014, 21:19

    Which joker voted for Maldonado?

  9. money (@carlos-danger) said on 7th April 2014, 21:22

    Daniel Ricciardo i the man with a plan

  10. prelvu (@prelvu) said on 7th April 2014, 21:52

    Perez deserve it but since this is a Hamilton fansite Hamilton wins it.

    • Bobby (@f1bobby) said on 7th April 2014, 22:56

      You’re being extremely blinkered in your assessment of the race if you can’t see why people would give the nod to Lewis. It begs the question, what would he have to do, in your eyes, to earn your vote?

  11. Cyclops_PL (@cyclops_pl) said on 7th April 2014, 22:19

    I wish I could vote for both Mercedes drivers, because their fight for the win made a large part of the show. Honorable mention to Perez as he reminded us about himself in an excellent fashion. Still, if I have to choose one then it is Lewis Hamilton.

  12. gort247 (@gort247) said on 7th April 2014, 22:27

    I voted Rosberg because he was actually faster. How many times in the next 16 races can Hamilton repeat a drive like this?

    • Bobby (@f1bobby) said on 7th April 2014, 22:54

      Plenty. Given that he had never won in Malaysia or Bahrain before he’s got two of his ‘bogey circuits’ out of the way. I believe he will have the edge on Rosberg at at least 60-70% of the remaining races which will be enough. Just hope the reliability issues don’t all fall on his side of the garage.

  13. Bazza Spock (@bazza-spock) said on 7th April 2014, 22:32

    I really think this was a significant race for the Mercedes team. Hamilton showed he has the edge. Rosberg is no slouch but the objective reality is that Lewis is a better, more forceful racer and it seems pretty likely that he’ll take the championship.

    Also _mad props_ to Danny Ricciardo. As an aussie it’s extremely heartening to see him take it to Vettel two weeks in a row. His start latweek in Malaysia was a blinder – the start was always Webber’s achilles heal but not this young fella.

  14. Nick (@npf1) said on 7th April 2014, 22:38

    There were so many great drives, but Hamilton has my vote.

    Perez – Wasn’t great in qualifying.
    Hulkenberg – Should have been closer to his teammate.
    Ricciardo – Very good race, but a little bit off the pace earlier in the weekend.
    Rosberg – Only beat Hamilton in Q3, arguably had the better ‘papers’ after SC.
    Still, it’s been a while since I had to pick between five drivers for this poll!

    • Oople said on 7th April 2014, 22:54

      @npf1

      What? Perez qualified fifth, which was fantastic… And Ricciardo qualified third, which was brilliant.

      In what world is that considered ‘not great’ and ‘a little off the pace’

    • RV (@zenren) said on 8th April 2014, 3:39

      I don’t see how you think Ricciardo was off the pace earlier in the weekend. Don’t go by the free practice times as they are out there with an agenda to test. Setting the fastest time is never a priority, especially on a track where they didn’t run much during testing while everyone else did ~4k mileage.

      He was clearly ahead of the rest of the pack in all qualifying sessions- got through Q1 on mediums which only the Mercedes drivers managed. Got to 3rd slot in Q2 and Q3 behind the two Mercedes cars. I don’t see where he was off pace earlier in the weekend.

  15. Bobby (@f1bobby) said on 7th April 2014, 22:50

    Hamilton. Defensive masteclass.

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