Start, Circuit de Catalunya, 2014

Vote for your 2014 Spanish GP driver of the weekend

2014 Spanish Grand PrixPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

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

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

Spanish Grand Prix driver-by-driver

Red Bull

Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Circuit de Catalunya, 2014Sebastian Vettel – Having switched chassis for the weekend in the hope it might help cure his handling problems with the RB10, Vettel’s race build-up was marred by problems. He stopped after four laps in first practice and missed the rest of the day’s running as the team replaced his wiring loom. Then his gearbox failed in Q3, leaving him 15th on the grid. To recover from there to finish fourth behind his team mate, aided by a three-stop strategy and some bold passes, is the best he could have hoped for.

Daniel Ricciardo – Looked right on it in qualifying and it would have been fascinating to see how he stacked up against an unhindered Vettel. The only blot on his performance was an indifferent start where he was passed by Bottas and nearly Grosjean as well. An early first pit stop allowed him to jump the Williams – though he came close to making a move stick on-track – and after that he had plenty of free space to nurse his tyres through a couple of longer stints.


Lewis Hamilton, Nico Rosberg, Mercedes, Circuit de Catalunya, 2014Nico Rosberg – Missed some running in first practice due to a problem with his energy recovery system but looked to be on course for pole position when he headed the times in Q1 and Q2. Hamilton beat him to it, though, and as he didn’t get off the line well he was on the back foot once again. As in Bahrain he showed he had the pace to take the fight to his team mate, and was poised to launch an attack when the chequered flag came down.

Lewis Hamilton – Having described Friday’s running as his best for a very long time, Hamilton seemed to lose his way initially on Saturday. But he got it together in time to take his fourth pole position of the year. Nonetheless his handling maladies returned during the race – he struggled with oversteer on his middle stint on medium tyres and Rosberg continued to catch him over the final laps. But he hung on to take win number four and the championship lead.


Fernando Alonso – Out-qualified by Raikkonen in a straight fight for the first time this year (he had a problem with his car in Bahrain) but looked quicker than his team mate from the moment the race began. Probably should have jumped ahead when he got the benefit of the first pit stop, but used a switch to a three-stop strategy to his advantage and made a move on-track with newer tyres late in the race.

Kimi Raikkonen – While Alonso was brought in on lap 17 and switched to a three-stop strategy to cover what Vettel was doing, Raikkonen was not and ended up being passed by his team mate. “Going for a two stop strategy proved to be the wrong choice because tyre degradation meant I couldn’t push all the way to the end,” he said.


Romain Grosjean, Lotus, Circuit de Catalunya, 2014Romain Grosjean – Had various problems with his car during practice but produced the goods in qualifying to put his Lotus an excellent fifth on the grid. He held that place until a problem with his power unit left him unable to keep the Ferraris behind on the straight. But eighth place meant he brought home Lotus’s first points of the year.

Pastor Maldonado – For the second weekend in a row Grosjean reached Q3 while Maldonado was eliminated in Q1: He spun into a wall just minutes after the session had begun. His race didn’t get off to a better start – he hit Ericsson on lap one, earning a stop-go penalty and licence endorsement. After falling to last place he came home ahead of the Saubers, but was passed by Kvyat after running a long final stint.


Start, Circuit de Catalunya, 2014Jenson Button – Took eighth on the grid and suspected there was only a little more time to be found in the McLaren. However a poor start – losing five places – left him with much to do. The timing of his second pit stop compounded his problems as he was held in his box while Kvyat went by, and then came out a lap down behind Hamilton’s Mercedes which was on old tyres. That left Button behind the Force Indias and out of the points.

Kevin Magnussen – A problem with his power unit in Q2 meant Magnussen was unable to set a time, leaving him 14th on the grid. He managed to avoid clipping Vettel and damaging his front wing on the first lap, but like his team mate couldn’t make any impression on the points places.

Force India

Nico Hulkenberg – Missed a place in Q3 by less than a tenth of a second but said his lap was “very good”. Ran ninth for much of the race but was demoted by his team mate during the final stint.

Sergio Perez – Aborted his final flying lap in Q2 because he hadn’t got his tyres up to temperature in traffic, which left him one place behind Hulkenberg on the grid. Both Force Indias ran long final stints – Hulkenberg 29 laps on hards, Perez 28 on mediums – and on lap 50 Perez got by his team mate on the outside of turn one.


Esteban Gutierrez, Sauber, Circuit de Catalunya, 2014Adrian Sutil – Having been content with his car on Friday he couldn’t get on top of the tyre temperatures on Saturday and was knocked out in Q1 for the third time. Despite having shed weight from their car Sauber continue to languish at the back of the midfield: “We still have a huge problem with the grip level,” reckoned Sutil.

Esteban Gutierrez – Qualified 14th and felt there wasn’t any more in the car. A good start moved up up to 11th but the car plainly wasn’t capable of holding that position and he was demoted by Kvyat, Button and Vettel. But he grafted away on his three-stop strategy and at least had the satisfaction of passing Sutil on the final lap.

Toro Rosso

Jean-Eric Vergne – A wheel came off his car during practice, earning him an automatic ten-place grid penalty. Therefore Vergne elected not to set a time after reaching Q2. But his fortune did not change on Sunday: The team were aware of an exhaust problem on his car before the race started, and it proved terminal.

Daniil Kvyat – Tyre degradation forced him onto a three-stopper. He passed two cars in his final stint to finish 14th and was reeling in Massa and the McLarens at the end.


Valtteri Bottas, Williams, Circuit de Catalunya, 2014Felipe Massa – Admitted he made a mistake at turn ten on his final flying lap, losing the rear of his car, which left him five places behind his team mate. The race didn’t go much better – he seldom managed to break out of traffic on his three-stopper and couldn’t make a move on the McLaren drivers.

Valtteri Bottas – Didn’t look comfortable with his car in practice, having sat out Q1 while Felipe Nasr drove, but set-up changes during final practice helped him take fourth on the grid. A decent start moved him up to third. But it always looked unlikely he was going to keep Ricciardo at bay, or the three-stopping Vettel who appeared during the final stint. Fifth place equalled his best result so far.


Jules Bianchi – Lost time at turn ten on his flying lap but still out-qualified the two Caterhams. Pulled away from Chilton but the Marussia wasn’t on the pace of the Saubers, meaning Bianchi had a lonely race.

Max Chilton – Spun into the gravel twice during practice, so it was a surprise to see him out-qualify Bianchi. However his three-stop strategy dropped him behind Ericsson, losing time. An engine oil pressure problem in the closing stages threatened to end his 100% finishing rate but he made it to the flag again.


Kamui Kobayashi – Claimed Bianchi held him up during qualifying, costing him a few tenths of a second and leaving him last of those who set times. His race ended on lap 44: “I had a pretty scary moment going into turn one when the left front brake failed and I was just able to keep the car out of the wall,” he said. He had a similar scare in Australia, but fortunately Massa wasn’t there for him to hit this time.

Marcus Ericsson – Out-qualified Kobayashi for the first time but was concerned about his car’s unpredictable handling. Having been assaulted by Maldonado on the first lap he brought his damaged car home in last place.

Qualifying and race results summary

Driver Started Gap to team mate Laps leading team mate Pitted Finished Gap to team mate
Sebastian Vettel 15th +0.439s 0/66 3 4th +27.688s
Daniel Ricciardo 3rd -0.439s 66/66 2 3rd -27.688s
Lewis Hamilton 1st -0.168s 60/66 2 1st -0.636s
Nico Rosberg 2nd +0.168s 6/66 2 2nd +0.636s
Fernando Alonso 7th +0.036s 13/65 3 6th Not on same lap
Kimi Raikkonen 6th -0.036s 52/65 2 7th Not on same lap
Romain Grosjean 5th 65/65 2 8th -33.542s
Pastor Maldonado 21st 0/65 2 15th +33.542s
Jenson Button 8th -0.11s 58/65 2 11th -0.657s
Kevin Magnussen 14th +0.11s 7/65 2 12th +0.657s
Nico Hulkenberg 10th -0.317s 46/65 2 10th +10.404s
Sergio Perez 11th +0.317s 19/65 2 9th -10.404s
Adrian Sutil 16th +0.189s 28/65 2 17th +3.124s
Esteban Gutierrez 13th -0.189s 37/65 3 16th -3.124s
Jean-Eric Vergne 22nd +0.12s 0/24 1
Daniil Kvyat 12th -0.12s 24/24 3 14th
Felipe Massa 9th +0.77s 0/65 3 13th Not on same lap
Valtteri Bottas 4th -0.77s 65/65 2 5th Not on same lap
Jules Bianchi 18th +0.591s 55/64 2 18th -40.691s
Max Chilton 17th -0.591s 9/64 3 19th +40.691s
Kamui Kobayashi 20th +0.063s 33/34 1
Marcus Ericsson 19th -0.063s 1/34 2 20th

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 Spanish Grand Prix weekend?

  • Sebastian Vettel (52%)
  • Daniel Ricciardo (4%)
  • Nico Rosberg (2%)
  • Lewis Hamilton (20%)
  • Fernando Alonso (1%)
  • Kimi Raikkonen (1%)
  • Romain Grosjean (11%)
  • Pastor Maldonado (0%)
  • Jenson Button (0%)
  • Kevin Magnussen (0%)
  • Sergio Perez (0%)
  • Nico Hulkenberg (0%)
  • Esteban Gutierrez (0%)
  • Adrian Sutil (0%)
  • Jean-Eric Vergne (0%)
  • Daniil Kvyat (0%)
  • Felipe Massa (0%)
  • Valtteri Bottas (7%)
  • Jules Bianchi (0%)
  • Max Chilton (1%)
  • Kamui Kobayashi (0%)
  • Marcus Ericsson (0%)

Total Voters: 708

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2014 Spanish Grand Prix

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

160 comments on “Vote for your 2014 Spanish GP driver of the weekend”

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  1. Vettel made some interesting overtakes, I choose him.

  2. Didnt see the race although it reruns tomorrow, but surprised to see Vet with such a lead

  3. Definitely Max. 24 finishes out of 24 starts. That is amazing form. Even if he hasn’t been a regular on the podium he can claim to have always brought the car home, nobody else on the grid can boast about that.

  4. Voted Vettel. It was a hard Choice between Vettel and Lewis. Finally decided in Vettel’s favor because Lewis did not get a Grand Chelem and Vettel got the fastest Lap of the race. It was a tough weekend for Vettel especially after the “Tough Luck” weekend, he did a good comeback with some Tough Luck the entire weekend. Plus some good overtakes during the race kept me from dozing off.

    But I must admit that Lewis also did a great job over the weekend !!! he was good in qualifying and held of a determined Rosberg. Albeit with a little whining :)

    Close call in the end.

  5. No love for Bottas….

  6. Gave it to Vettel – he was 3rd fastest behind the Mercedes in Q2 which also means he had extracted the maximum from the tyres that he started the race with. Unlike a regular P15 starter who can start with fresh tyres, Vettel started the race with a 3 lap old tyre just like front runners and still had to pass the Ferraris, Williams, Force Indias and McLarens during the race to finish P4.

    In case of Ricciardo, he couldn’t catch up the Mercs ahead and didn’t have any threat from Bottas behind him. So he had full control over his race and could look after the car and drive the race according to the plan. So no pressure of overtakes or undercuts on him during the race.

    Since Hamilton and Rosberg were performing in similar levels, there is no point in giving DOTW to either of them since what we saw was performance of the car and not the driver.

    Bottas did better than his team mate but Massa is no benchmark to compare against. Someone performing worse than Massa needs to be kicked out of F1 but doing better than Massa doesn’t say anything!

    Maldonado deserves special applause for not crashing during the race.

  7. What a surprise Hamilton is top 3 again

    1. Well yeah but he did qualify on pole, take the lead of the championship and win the race under quite a bit of pressure from his team mate… It’s not like he finished 8th!

  8. I voted for Seb Vettel as his overtakes we’re awesome. Saying that, I don’t think the TV coverage I got showed more than a few mins of Dan Ricciardo and only barely more of Valtteri Bottas (who also drove amazing races). I know there is data showing how well they did but it somehow seems to have more impact when you ‘view’ it.

  9. Darren Danga
    13th May 2014, 9:10

    Can someonene please explain what causes over steer and under steer thank you?

    1. do you understand what understeer and oversteer are?
      if you do, then you will have to google their causes because there are just too many to even start writting them down.

      they can go from low/high tire pressure to a differential with too much or too little slip.

    2. Set-up (such as suspension geometry, damper stiffness…), tyre pressures, excessively abrupt power delivery, differential settings, brake bias, aerodynamic set-up, lack of overall downforce, tyre wear…

      The list goes on indefinitely.

  10. A few candidates but my vote goes to Vettel this time. Having missed most of the practice sessions and being 15th on the grid through no fault of his own, he had a lot of work to do to make up the ground and he did it with a punchy, aggressive drive. Special mention to Bottas for a great qualy and tidy, if unspectacular race, he would be my second choice.

    Mentions also to Grosjean, Ricciardo, and ofc Hamilton.

  11. I dislike all the “and I’m a fan of X” “and I’m not a fan of Y” comments. Who you like should have no bearing on your vote, so it’s worthless mentioning it.

    1. @vettel1 , and how has this particular post contributed to this website today?

      What you like or don’t like to read in the comments should not be an issue, unless somebody is writing about you. Which does not seem to be the case “so it’s worthless mentioning it.”

      1. @brunes the observation has worth though, for the whole point in these polls is to vote without influence from your driver preferences. Drawing attention to that is not “worthless”, as you so claim.

        1. @vettel1
          Some observations do have worth. However, you seemed to draw attention to the fact you dislike that sort of comment. As your first phrase clearly stated.
          “I DISLIKE all the “and I’m a fan of X” “and I’m not a fan of Y” comments.”

          Fortunately we are here to discuss F1, not personal taste for comments. So, although your second statement does raise an interesting point, you have overshadowed it by stating that the reason they should not be here is because you dislike them.

          1. @brunes so essentially you propose one should not have an opinion? That’s the impression I am getting.

            I don’t see how the fact I stated I dislike the comments changes the point that followed. Asserting that it does only shows you are being judgemental on the basis of my initial opinion.

  12. It’s a tough one this time as no-one really stood out that much but I’m going to go for Ricciardo.

    Hamilton wasn’t at his best so it’s hard to pick him. Rosberg drove well but couldn’t beat Hamilton who wasn’t at his best so hard to pick him either…. Vettel drove well to recover however the Red Bull’s were comfortably the 2nd best cars so that was to be expected.

    If the Red Bull’s were on top like they were last year, Ricciardo would have won by a significant distance and would have qualified on pole. Just because the Mercs are so much faster than the rest, it doesn’t mean that the job he is currently doing is any worse than the job Vettel did last year. Unless both Mercs fail to finish, Riccardio had zero chance of beating them this weekend and due to the fact he’s new to the team, I think it’s really impressive how he’s doing so he gets my vote this time.

    1. @petebaldwin Fair enough but Ricciardo couldn’t pass Bottas on track and that was the only car he raced against during the GP. You probably should have given your vote to Hamilton as he did all that was asked of him. I voted for Vettel because passing as many cars as he did on a circuit know for processions and little passing was impressive.

      1. @curmudgeon – Yeah fair enough. Vettel would have probably got my vote had I not gone for Ricciardo. I was just impressed that he kept the whole weekend clean and did exactly what was needed to finish in the best position he could have hoped for without the Mercs running into problems. That goes right through all sessions to get the car set up right, qualify it where he needed to and for making no mistakes all weekend. It was a drive that you would have expected from someone like Alonso with years of experience.

        If he was racing the Mercs, I think we’d have seen him push on a bit more however he managed everything perfectly.

        Hamilton just didn’t get everything right. He wasn’t faster than Rosberg so it’s difficult to say he was the best driver over the weekend. Similarly, Rosberg was faster but was unable to finish ahead of Hamilton so it’s hard to say he was the best either….

  13. Sebastian Vettel – precisely for his lack of driving, which in turn improves the score I give for the driving he did do 2 days later (plus the earbox failure, that is), from 15th to 4th.

  14. I voted for Vettel.

    He had plenty of car problems leading up to the race which left him well down the grid, but he put in great drive in the race to finish fourth.

    Ricciardo continues to impress but with Vettel’s troubles over the weekend you couldn’t really get a good comparison of the two teammates.

    Other drivers who seemed to perform well over the weekend were Bottas, Grosjean and of course Hamilton, Rosberg may have been faster formost of Saturday but Hamilton pulled it out of the bag when it mattered in Q3 and had enough to keep him behind during the race.

  15. In short,

    Disaster Friday and Saturday.

    – Suffered a 5-grid penalty because of a car problem and a tough weekend.
    – Remained positive (which I believe to be screaming at the radio after being held up for long for the 1st stint into the race)
    – Brilliant overtakes at T10 of Circuit de Catalunya
    – Sets the fastest lap of the race where Mercedes would have easily gotten it (Yeah you may say fresher tyres, lighter fuel load. But with the down in horsepower compared to the Mercs?)

    Special mention to Grosjean, Raikkonen and Bottas.

    – Bottas and Grosjean put the car into the best position for the team, especially Grosjean’s Lotus after an eventful disastrous Winter testing and first few races.
    – Raikkonen for being in front of Alonso after a bad start to the season.

  16. Vettel – for the first time ever, from me. Head down, no moaning, no team orders, no sulking – just got on with overtaking and working a strategy, in a car that is not best suited to him.

  17. American F1
    14th May 2014, 13:32

    Vettel; 15th to 4th says it all, particularly after such horrible practice/qulaifying episodes.

  18. Hamilton, P1 in FP1 + FP2 + Quali + Race

    Qualified on pole with a set-up that he wasnt comfortable with, was chased down for the entire race by his team mate who had a much tidier set-up and still won the race.

    I dont see how Vettel who only participated in about 50% of the weekend can be classed as DOTW, yeah he overtook some cars – big wow.

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