Three-in-a-row for Bottas in Driver of the Weekend

2014 German Grand Prix

Valtteri Bottas, Williams, Hockenheimring, 2014Another impressive performance from Valtteri Bottas in the German Grand Prix – in which he qualified and finished second – has earned him his third Driver of the Weekend win in a row.

It’s the first time any driver has headed three such polls in a row since F1 Fanatic began them in mid-2010.

Although he was aided by Lewis Hamilton’s qualifying woes, Bottas held off the faster Mercedes for eight laps. Hamilton ran him close in the poll as well – the pair were separated by little more than 3% of the vote.

Daniel Ricciardo placed third in the vote with 10.4% after having to make his own recovery drive following being pushed far off the track and down the field due to a collision between two other drivers at the first corner.

That also means that for the third race in a row the winner of the Grand Prix was not voted in the top three. Nico Rosberg was fourth in the poll he is still yet to win despite his four grand prix victories and championship lead.

1. Valtteri Bottas

Started: 2nd
Finished: 2nd

With the removal of the FRIC systems a major talking point heading into the weekend, everyone was wondering who would be most affected, and following first practice it looked to be Williams.

They improved as the weekend went on however and when the opportunity arose for a non-Mercedes to start on the front row alongside Rosberg, Bottas duly took it, despite his only previous experience of Hockenheim being a rain-hit practice session two years ago.

He got off to a sluggish start but held onto second and as soon as team mate Felipe Massa retired and the racing restarted, he looked all but confirmed for a podium, with the only question being what position because of Hamilton’s recovering Mercedes.

That threat never arrived until the final eight laps however and Bottas placed his car perfectly to keep Hamilton at bay and take his third podium from three races.

He had a great qualifying and drove brilliantly to split the Mercedes in the end. He started well and did his best to keep pace with Rosberg while resisting a bit of pressure from Vettel and Alonso behind him.

After that he had a quiet race, but put in the laps needed to solidify his position. Towards the end of the race, on dying tyres, he did supremely well to fend off the faster Hamilton. He was cool under pressure, ensuring that he never went too defensive knowing that such an action would play in to Hamilton’s hands.

Great stuff and I’m looking forward to his inevitable first win. I just hope it’s this year and not later!
Colossal Squid (@colossal-squid)

He had very strong qualifying and his race was also faultless and solid, a maximum result that day. He stayed calm, looked after the tyres and even though he was meant to be “an easy catch” for Lewis in the last laps, didn’t panic and held second to the chequered flag.

All in all, I think this was the strongest weekend in general from Bottas during his Formula One career so far.
Fanatico (@Fanatico)

Bottas again. This was easily his best overall performance yet and its all the more remarkable considering that until FP2 he’d never done a dry lap around Hockenheim in his life. He had a belting qualifying and then ran a perfectly clean race before comfortably holding off Lewis. He made his weekend look very easy indeed, and that’s the mark of a true great.
Graham (@guitargraham)

2. Lewis Hamilton

Started: 20th
Finished: 3rd

All Hamilton needed heading into the German Grand Prix was a clean weekend, starting with an error-free qualifying session, but he never got it.

Brake failure in Q1 all but eliminated any hopes of beating his team mate in the race unless Rosberg had mechanical issues of his own as Hamilton looked set to line-up 15th. Matters got even worse however as he required a new gearbox following the crash, and duly started 20th.

A start nowhere near as impressive as his Austrian or British getaway – coupled with the early Safety Car ruling out any chance of easy overtakes on the opening lap – made Hamilton’s race even harder, but he set about in his usual battling form, performing a double overtake on Ricciardo and Kimi Raikkonen.

But a misjudgement passing ex-team mate Jenson Button damaged his front wing however and ultimately forced him onto a three-stop strategy, compromising any chance of passing Bottas for second.

I can’t blame him for the brake failure in qualifying but I can credit him for charging through the field. It wasn’t a simple “wait for DRS” type strategy; he was aggressive and you could physically see his determination. You knew how important this race was to him. Great effort all around.
Nerrticus (@nerrticus)

For once the qualifying error was nothing to do with him and apart for one mess up with Button he was brilliant, it goes to him. Was exciting throughout and went for gaps that other drivers wouldn’t go for, exciting guy, exciting race.
ADD (@addimaf1)

3. Daniel Ricciardo

Started: 5th
Finished: 6th

Ricciardo once again out-qualified team mate Sebastian Vettel to take fifth on the grid, but it was all for nothing as he had to take to the run-off at the start to avoid being involved in the Magnussen-Massa clash.

From 15th Ricciardo had it all to do but his progress mirrored that of Hamilton’s behind, as he sliced his way through the order.

An attacking three-stop strategy helped him gain yet further ground and he produced one of the highlights of the race in his battle with Alonso during the closing laps.

Ricciardo from me. A great recovery with heaps of overtaking after being compromised at the start of the race. The highlight was the battle with Alonso towards the end of the race.
Melchior (@melchior)

2014 Driver of the Weekend results

Race First Second Third
Australian Kevin Magnussen (48.4%) Valtteri Bottas (24.5%) Daniel Ricciardo (14.1%)
Malaysian Lewis Hamilton (54.3%) Nico Hulkenberg (24.0%) Sebastian Vettel (6.5%)
Bahrain Lewis Hamilton (49.2%) Sergio Perez (25.7%) Daniel Ricciardo (16.6%)
China Fernando Alonso (47.7%) Lewis Hamilton (30.7%) Daniel Ricciardo (7.8%)
Spain Sebastian Vettel (51.9%) Lewis Hamilton (20.5%) Romain Grosjean (11.0%)
Monaco Jules Bianchi (60.2%) Nico Rosberg (11.5%) Daniel Ricciardo (8.8%)
Canada Daniel Ricciardo (44.9%) Nico Rosberg (22.4%) Sergio Perez (9.5%)
Austria Valtteri Bottas (41.7%) Lewis Hamilton (15.1%) Sergio Perez (14.3%)
Britain Valtteri Bottas (52.5%) Fernando Alonso (18.5%) Jenson Button (11.8%)
Germany Valtteri Bottas (37.1%) Lewis Hamilton (33.8%) Daniel Ricciardo (10.4%)

2014 German Grand Prix

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Image © Williams/LAT

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12 comments on Three-in-a-row for Bottas in Driver of the Weekend

  1. Kingshark (@kingshark) said on 25th July 2014, 10:52

    No Rosberg in the top 3 again? Now there’s a surprise.

    In all honesty, I really don’t see why Lewis should have been rated ahead of Nico in Austria. He had the pace to be on pole by 4 tenths, but threw away a victory through his own silly mistakes. At least in Germany his low grid slot was not his fault, so I can see where those votes come from.

    As for Bottas, nothing else needs to be said. This guy is quite simply doing a mesmerizing job.

    • Sam Andrew said on 25th July 2014, 12:02

      Bottas out qualified Massa by 0.25s, hardly mesmerizing. Bottas put in a good performance, but he wasn’t that much better than everyone else last weekend. I think people are voting so positively because they are pleased to see Williams doing well. Beating Massa is no where near as mighty an achievement as what Riccardo is doing to Vettel.

      • He was closer to the pole (0.22s from Rosberg) than Massa was to him. A great quali lap no doubt, but Bottas managing to keep Hamilton behind must have done the trick for many people who voted for Bottas, me included.

      • trublu (@trublu) said on 25th July 2014, 15:17

        .25 is hardly mesmerizing? This is F1! It takes something to pull a quarter of a second on a team mate in the same car. In a 67 lap race that’s almost a 17 sec gap.

    • Jack (@jmc200) said on 25th July 2014, 22:43

      Totally agree on the Lewis vs Rosberg battle, it just seems people don’t recognise the job he’s doing, particularly in Austria, where he was fantastic.

  2. Breno (@austus) said on 25th July 2014, 12:24

    I honestly dont see how someone can vote for Hamilton, he has a much better car, Bottas had the worst tyres on track and he couldnt pass him. I’m not even going to mention him breaking the front wing by throwing the car into Button.

    • trublu (@trublu) said on 25th July 2014, 15:11

      You conveniently forgot that Hamilton also had tire issues.

      Button took an uncharacteristically wide turn and Hamilton misjudged Button’s intent NOT his positioning. The resulting collision with have happened to anyone.

      • Lari (@lari) said on 25th July 2014, 17:09

        Not all think that the car in front of you will just give you room like it was going to get lapped, when it’s not and they’re racing for position. Even if the car behind you is 1,5-2sec/lap faster.

    • Patrickl (@patrickl) said on 25th July 2014, 16:30

      I honestly don’t see how someone can vote for Bottas.

      Bottas simply did his laps in the second fastest car. He had a poor start and then blocked Massa which helped his team mate crash out. At the end of the race he had the tyre advantage over Hamilton, because he could just cruise along while Hamilton was fighting his way through the field.

      Working your way up from P20 to P3 is a lot harder than just keeping your position from qualifying. No matter if the car is a few tenths faster or not.

  3. F1WithMySon (@f1withmyson) said on 25th July 2014, 22:07

    I’m so glad for Bottas and Williams this year! I think he’s a top-tier talent, and he also seems like a genuinely nice guy. It’s great to see Claire and team enjoying a good year.

  4. Wesley (@wesley) said on 26th July 2014, 0:06

    Lewis from P20 to P3 and he is not driver of the weekend…..amazing

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