Mid-season driver rankings
2nd August 2013, 11:04 at 11:04 am #239497
1. Vettel – He has been very impressive this season, the most of any driver. He hasn’t really made any glaring mistakes and keeps on finishing high, he had two his lowest finish is a 4th place. His worse race was in Hungary were he still scored 3rd place, and he had an anonymous race in China. Vettel also had one retirement from the lead in Silverstone, he could have been leading the WDC much further. He is really driving like a 3x WDC.
2. Raikkonen – Lotus is a bit all over the place they started off good in Australia. Kimi’s worst race of the season was in Malaysia. In Canada Kimi had big brake issues during the race, and a fuel consumption issue and a problem with his pitstop. In Silverstone Lotus could have gotten a good result despite being off the pace, but made a wrong strategic call. This is a recurring issue with Lotus they always seem like they could have done something more if it was not for their strategies. They often have some of the strongest race pace, but at the same time they often dont seems as fast as others, like Ferrari it is difficult when you are not likely to qualify in the front row.
Actually Kimi has been good in qualifying this season, compared to the rest of the top 4 it is only Vettel who has done better, Kimi has only been out qualified by Grosjean twice. Kimi hasn’t done much wrong there is only the incident with Perez which was declared a racing incident, in his worst race he was still 7th place.
3. Hamilton – Since Monaco the only race where Mercedes have struggled with tyres and gone backwards was at Germany. They were not as strong at the start of the season but they have been improving a lot, and they still had good races before Monaco as well at the start of the season, in Malaysia and China. Lewis did look a bit lost at certain races. His worst race was in Spain were he scored no points, and he was also anonymous in Monaco, but still got a decent result. Lewis needed a bit of time to adapt to the team in the first part of the season he wasn’t at his strongest in the first part of the season. But he has been really getting there since Canada. He has done a great job so far. Lewis could be a real challenge for the WDC against Vettel for the rest of the season, especially with Mercedes’s qualifying pace.
4. Alonso – Of course qualifying has been an issue for Ferrari, but often when you look at FP3 times and Ferrari’s times in Q1 and Q2 you expect them to do slightly better. This was especially true in the first part of the season when Ferrari was one of the best packages. But come Q3 Alonso were often outqualified by a Lotus, who also tends to struggle in qualifying. Alonso has been out qualified by Massa a few times.
Thing have gone wrong here and there, in Malaysia Alonso drove directly into Webber and broke his front wing, the team should have pitted him and they didn’t. In Bahrain Alonso had the DRS problem, which is obviously not his fault. In Monaco Alonso was anonymous. In Silverstone Massa was a bit ahead of Alonso and looked a bit stronger until he had the puncture.
Alonso has less points this season, compared to last season were he had a worse car in the beginning of the year. But Alonso had such a great season last year that it would always be impossible to keep up that kind of form. Since Silverstone Ferrari seems to be going backwards, basically the last 3 races. Alonso has done a good job in the last two races.
5. Rosberg – Rosberg has been keeping Lewis honest. Although it seems like Lewis has now found his groove in his new team, and Rosberg is now a bit behind. He has been unlucky at times but he has also had some extreme highs and lows. He did a great in Monaco, and was a bit lucky to win at Silverstone. But he has also had some big lows like in Hungary. The season has gone decently so far for him.
6. Button – Mclaren is 6th in the WDC and Button is in front of Sutil and Di Resta in the WDC. So one could conclude that he is doing a good job of collecting points for the team. But Perez has been much closer to him then what one would expect. Still Button is able to bring home the points and that counts for a lot.
7. Webber – He has been completely out qualified and out raced by Vettel. But he has also had to deal with some type issue every single weekend that was completely out of his control. He is still doing decently and collecting points for Red Bull in his last season.
8. Di Resta – He has done well. I give him the nod before Sutil because he has scored more points. Although he and Sutil are really equal, both have done a great job, not to many mistakes. Both of them could have done better if it weren’t for Force India’s reliability and pitstop mistakes.
9. Sutil – Equal with Di Resta and he had been out of F1 for a year. Both are doing a great job but are let down by the team at times.
10. Hulkenberg – He hasn’t made any really big mistakes, and he done well to collect a few points for Sauber when he had the chance.
11. Perez – Perez has been closer to Button then what you expect. But overall he isn’t really consistent enough. And he seems to be involved in too much incidents. He could be a good driver, he just needs a bit of balance perhaps.
12. Bottas – He is doing a good job for a rookie, he is regularly outqualifying and out racing Maldonado. That is not such an easy thing to do. People had a real chance to notice him in Canada.
13. Bianchi – He has comprehensively outdone his teammate. Out qualifying someone by such huge amounts in your first season is no small feat.
14. Grosjean – He has done really well in the last two races, perhaps he is starting to turn a corner now. But overall out of all of the top teams second drivers he has scored the least.
15. Maldonado – He has just scored Williams first points. It is a bit surprising to see Botas outdoing him right from the start. Not a bad season by any means, but it is difficult when the car just isn’t good enough.
16. Ricciardo – He is really great in qualifying, and he had a few misfortunes. But he still losses a bit too much in the races. It is hard to think that he will be very competitive against Vettel if he gets the Red Bull seat. But he is also still learning.
17. Vergne – He and Ricciardo is practically equal. But Ricciardo shows some promise with his qualifying.
18. Massa – He showed some promise at the start of the season and he has out qualified Alonso a few times. But ultimately crashing out in 4 consecutive races, is just a bit to much.
19. Pic – He has outdone van der Garde and shows a bit of potential at times.
20. Gutierrez – He has done a decent session here and there but ultimately he is invisible.
21. Van Der Garde – He looked like he could have a good race here or there, but he has never gotten it together.
22. Chilton – Well Chilton has at times been utterly and complete outdone, it doesn’t seem like he is quite ready for F1 yet.2nd August 2013, 14:49 at 2:49 pm #239498
Nice list. Rosberg was a bit lucky to win at Silverstone? You can say that again:-) In my opinion, Rosberg was probably lucky to win at Monaco because Hamilton’s position drop could have been Rosberg’s if Hamilton wasn’t there to defend P1 as Vettel would have been all over Rosberg and Red Bull would have tried to tried to swap positons on strategy as they had successfully done the year before with Vettel and Hamilton.8th August 2013, 21:19 at 9:19 pm #239499
1. Vettel. In my opinion the most consistent of the drivers in the top cars.
2. Raikkonen. Let’s himself down slightly in qualifying but seems to achieve as much as he can during the race. Occasionally let down by strategy.
3. Hamilton. Doing well in a new team but has disappeared in some races. While the tyres were partly to blame, he seemed to lose his fighting spirit specifically in Spain.
4. Alonso. I might here be a little guilty of comparing Alonso 2012, to Alonso 2013, rather than Alonso vs the rest of the grid. But this year he seems to have lost a little of his spark.
5. Rosberg. Closer to Hamilton than I expected at the start of the season. Now that Lewis has established himself may fall away.
6. Di Resta. I hate myself for saying this but he’s done well. Still complains too much. Still too eager to bad mouth his own team, and more dammingly perhaps not robust enough when defending his position, but, I see him as more a complete driver than I did last year.
7. Button. With a lesser car than last year has done what button does best. Preserved tyres, opted for different strategies, and achieved somewhat surprising results.
8. Hulkenberg. Points from a poor car. Has shown signs of frustration though. Looking forward to his usual strong second half of the season. Defending his position from Hamilton in Germany proved his fighting spirit and racing ability are still there.
9. Webber. More of the same. Sublime or invisible. Bored of his passive aggressive hints of favouritism.
10. Massa. More of the same. Sublime or ridiculous. Too much of a confidence driver to achieve real success again.
11/12. Perez/Grosjean. Both have shown signs of deserving a top seat. Both have shown signs of recklessness.
13/14 Ricciardo/Vergne. Still don’t quite understand why Red Bull were so quick to dismiss Vergne. While Ricciardo is undoubtedly the better qualifier, Vergne tends to do better during the race. This may be down to strategy I guess, with Toro Rosso often opting to put in an attempt during Q3 while other surprise participants preserve tyres. Vergne, however, has every right to argue that he has been the unluckier of the pair and is still ahead in the championship. Too difficult to separate the pair in my opinion.
15. Sutil. Shows how close the midfield pack are that that Sutil is this low despite returning strongly after a year out. A couple of mistakes though nothing noteworthy. Some strong performances though nothing spectacular.
16. Maldonado. One of the rare occasions where the more experienced driver is the least fancied to succeed. Seems to have calmed compared to last year, I no longer wince when I see drivers alongside him.
17. Bottas. Difficult to judge. One great qualifying performance but the car isn’t there for us to decide wether or not it was a fluke. Probably a lot better than I’m giving him credit for.
18. Guittierez. I genuinely feel for him. He has arguably the most difficult task of the rookies against a highly rated driver in an obviously poor car. Started off sloppily but has shown signs of improvement, especially during the race.
19. Bianchi. I don’t get the hype. Bettering Max Chilton convincingly. Nothing more.
20. Van De Garde. I don’t get the criticism. A little sloppy when being lapped but has shown more to get excited about this season than Pic, especially qualifying at Monaco.
21. Pic. Safe, invisible.
22. Chilton. Has done little to convince me that he deserves a seat in f1.9th August 2013, 7:27 at 7:27 am #239500
10. Ricciardo – Has definitely beat his teammate in terms of consistency throughout the year. In his 2nd full season, he has shown that he is a strong qualifier and he can hold his own on Sundays as well. Putting a car that isn’t worth of being in Q3 wil definitely get him extra brownie points with the Red Bull Garage
9. Di Resta – Although he didn’t start his season off in the same spectacular fashion that Sutil did, he has matched and bettered his teammate over the past 4-5 races and is looking strong for the 2nd half of the season. DI Resta looks like a more mature and well rounded driver in this season than he has in any of his previous years
8. Sutil – For a who spent a year out of the sport, Sutil seemed to be on the ball from the get go. His superb performances in Australia and Monaco showed that he can take more than a 100% out of the car on occasion. Bad luck still plagues him though, as his points total should be higher than it is right now.
7. Webber – Webber has been convincingly thrashed by his teammate in quali this year, and he has been destroyed by his teammate on Sundays as well. Mark’s form hasn’t been poor, but he just cannot take us much out of the fastest car on the grid as his teammate does. He has had his fair share of mechanical failures and team errors that have reduced his ponts tally, nonetheless, he hasn’t had a good run of races this season like he has shown in 2009, 2010 and 2012.
6. Hulkenberg – Sauber is arguably one of the weakest cars in midfield along with the Williams. Yet Hulkenberg has managed to get that car into Q3 on a few occassions and has finished in the points as well. Even when he doesn’t finish in the points, he lies just outside of them, which shows that if he had a slightly better car, he would be leading the midfield pack this year.
5. Rosberg – Rosberg definitely held his own against his SUperstar teammate. He has shown that he is quick in quali and that he has the maturity to hold his nerve while leading and win races. A slight improvement in consistency and a little more race tact definitely puts him amongst the big 4 drivers on the grid
4. Alonso – A driver who has been hands down the class of the field over the past 3 seasons, just doesn’t seem to be on it this year. Its questionable whether his frustrations with his car have reduced his motivation and focus, or whether he just has run out of magic that we are so used to seeing from him every season. Alonso can still show who’s boss, like he did in China and Barcelona, but performances in Malaysia and Monaco, along with a couple of poor quali performances, make us question whether he has been at 100% this year
3. Raikkonen – The most consistent driver on the grid, and usually the best driver out there on Sundays. Raikkonen has learn’t how to maximise the Lotus’ potential on raceday and has utilised his tyre management advantage to the maximum. He still needs to improve on his quali pace though, as well make improvements to his 1st lap in the races
2 Hamilton – Lewis has shown everyone this year why is regarded as the quickest driver out there. Phenomenal quali performances like in Britain and great race management in Hungary has shown that given the right equipment he can get the job done better than anyone else out there.
1. Vettel – As much as I hate to admit it, Vettel has been absolutely flawless this year. On every occasion he has maximised his car’s potential – be it quali sessions or racedays. Although he does have the best car on the grid, he has raced with maturity and consistency. He has given no opportunity to his competitors to capitalise on any mistakes. His 1st half of the season this year was almost as good as ALonso’s first half of the season last year, which most f1 fans regarded as heroic.10th August 2013, 11:57 at 11:57 am #239501
8. Di Resta
20. Van Der Garde
22. Chilton11th August 2013, 23:09 at 11:09 pm #239502
Hope this is in time for the article, especially since the site went down after I typed it up..
1. Sebastian Vettel
What a season he’s having. He hasn’t put a foot wrong this season and while you’ve come to expect great pace from Vettel, he keeps maturing and apart from his radio message in Hungary (ironically the same place as last year) he seems a lot more level-headed as well. He’s shown great overtakes and he doesn’t need to be on pole to win. If he keeps this up, he will be the very deserving winner of this year’s championship.
2. Kimi Raikkonen
Mr. Consistency; now with added race and qualifying pace. He had some off weekends in Monaco and Canada, but he has been intensely tight the rest of the year. He still is a little too self-centered to maximize team performance sometimes (shouting at his engineer in Germany, not seeming to want to do the extra miles in practise sometimes) but his driving is excellent. He and Lotus need to up their game much like last year, but not to ‘win that elusive win’, but to win more races to challenge for the championship.
3. Fernando Alonso
I wasn’t going to put him this high had I not given more thought to it. But I feel he edges the Mercedes drivers because he might not be having the amazing season he had last year, but still shows good race pace and often finishes a little above where I expected him. He and Ferrari need to work VERY hard to keep up with Vettel, Raikkonen and Mercedes, though. He needs to find his mojo, Ferrari needs to stop fooling around.
4. Lewis Hamilton
I was one of those people who just knew he would regret his move. Boy, was I wrong. He took his time to get used to the team and sometimes is a little immature about things, but generally his pace has been very good. Now he also manages to keep his tyres from going to bits (the tyres themselves didn’t at Silverstone, though) and is starting to look like a serious contender for the championship. If he keeps going like he has been since Canada, Kimi and Fernando ought to be worried.
5. Romain Grosjean
Suffered from a bad chassis at the beginning of the season, immediately picked up the pace once he got his car to his liking. Had a run of 4 bad races, of which Monaco was the only one where I would really blame him, with Canada ruined by the penalty. I think he is absolutely right in thinking his first win is right around the corner, he just needs to make sure his car stays in one piece and he keeps all 4 wheels on the track in getting there. He seems to have turned around his mindset this season with Monaco as low point, and Hungary as unexpected sympathy plea from a lot of F1 fans.
6. Nico Rosberg
Won two races, had 3 consecutive poles and still is hardly considered a contender for the championship by anyone. Rosberg seems to be cementing his status as a DC/Barrichello kind of driver. Fast, capable to win races, but lacking the raw pace the top 4 has and lacking the skill to make up for it. He has only been on the podium for his wins and has been rather all over the place when he hasn’t won. Is perhaps the unlucky one this year at Mercedes, but still having a great season, just not as great as it could be.
7. Mark Webber
Mark is utterly inconsistent in his final season, but when he’s there, he’s truly there. Perhaps unlucky, perhaps a little less dedicated, but he has lost none of his speed. The Multi-21 thing is perhaps a little telling of his driving this season; once you’re past, you’re past. I think he will end up winning a race this year and could very well bow out with a victory, but he doesn’t need too many races like Australia, Bahrain, or Spain.
8. Paul di Resta
After grading, I had to re-check to see if he really was in my top 10. But looking at his results, his comebacks from terrible qualifying sessions and 4th place in Bahrain, it makes a lot of sense I’m rating his races so well so far. He is easily having his best season so far and apart from his typical off-track demeanor, he seems to have matured and is driving very solid races. Had a terrible weekend before the summer break and hopefully it doesn’t break him up like not being signed by a top team last year did. It’s a weird year when a solid driver ends up in my top 10..
9. Nico Hulkenberg
Getting more from the Sauber than it has to give, but at the same time, that isn’t always enough for points. He’s been having good races, but hasn’t had any great ones so far. Finishing right behind Maldonado last weekend was mostly due to his clumsy mistake of speeding in the pitlane, which is something I didn’t expect him to do. Still, he is proving his worth again, he just needs a weekend in which he makes it hard to deny his speed and skill with an excellent result.
10. Adrian Sutil
Barely noticeable he’s been away for a year. He is less consistent than di Resta, but at the same time he sometimes looks to be miles ahead in pace sometimes, only to mess up the next race. If Force India wants to maintain their position in front of McLaren, the car and Sutil need some work.
11. Felipe Massa
‘Oh, he’s back!’ ‘I was wrong last week.’ ‘He was faster than Fernando? Good news!’ ‘He spun out like a rookie?!’ Basically every conversation about Massa this year. Much more extreme in his peaks than Webber or Sutil, he’s also facing much lower lows. His spin in Germany was a disaster, while he seemed to be headed for the podium at other races. He’s had enough chances, you can’t have such a flux in performance, especially compared to Fernando. Still, his peaks kept his average going for my ratings.
12. Jean-Eric Vergne
Vergne seems to be maturing faster than most drivers I’ve seen come to F1 in a team like Toro Rosso. His qualifying pace leaves something to be desired, but his races are top notch and if the car is there, he is there. He doesn’t seem to be able to extract more from the car than there is and has been pretty unlucky so far. Still, I predict him to be ahead in the team mate battle on points at the end of the season.
13. Daniel Ricciardo
Needs to work on his race pace, often appears to be going backwards, even if it makes sense from a car-performance standpoint. He doesn’t seem to be as-abled to make the car and tyres work for the entire race as Vergne. Still, they both impress me more than most Toro Rosso boys since Vettel.
14. Jenson Button
Poor Jense. A very bad McLaren by modern standards, while he isn’t the type of driver who can over-drive the car or maximize its performance. We saw him dropping off with the BrawnGP in 2009 and now we see again how his performances are tied to the car, much more so than the other 4 active world champions. He’s been doing his job, but hasn’t shown anything great like Belgium last year or Japan 2011. Not having a bad season by any means, but simply unimpressive to me, so far.
15. Sergio Perez
Reasonably keeping up with Button, but his showing at Monaco was one of a rookie who outqualyfied himself, not that of a McLaren driver. Realistic enough to know he won’t win a race this season, but I can’t fully judge his commitment yet. If McLaren want to beat Force India, it’s Perez who needs a kick in the butt and a long lecture by Ron.
16. Pastor Maldonado
I have to say I believe him when he says the car doesn’t suit him. Having watched some on-board footage from his win last year and some of this year’s races, it’s like the car responds the opposite of how it did last year (from an armchair expert’s point of view). Still, he has been close to the points a couple of times and took the first opportunity to finish in the points with both hands. Can he improve his season? I doubt it.
17. Jules Bianchi
As a Frijns fan in FR 3.5 and a VDG fan in GP2 in 2010, Bianchi didn’t do himself any favors for my view of his talent. Still, he has come into F1 and threw out my preconceptions within a few races. He’s fast, a good racer and the best rookie in my opinion. Marussia is losing out on Caterham in the development race, but that doesn’t seem to stop Bianchi from keeping up with them in practice. His 13th in Malaysia has probably brought the team their 10th in the constructors as well, unless we have another crazy late-season race.
18. Valtteri Bottas
I imagine he will loathe the media hype. He looks faster than Maldonado sometimes, but even for a rookie seems to be rather random as far as pace is concerned. Has been rather anonymous as well, so I find it hard to judge most of his races.
19. Charles Pic
Leading a backmarker team in only your 2nd season is an impressive off-track feature, his driving on-track has been very solid as well. Often taking back the position lost to van der Garde at the start during the race on pace or strategy, he seems to be a very mature young driver. I’m not too sure on his raw pace, though.
20. Giedo van der Garde
His excellent qualifying in Monaco and 14th place in Hungary are very mean features for a rookie at Caterham, even though he seems to have a lot of trouble making way for the leaders. He has great starts, often taking a Williams or two before losing those places on pace. He’s a good driver, but that’s about it. He needs more Monaco and Hungary and less Canada.
21. Esteban Gutiérrez
A talented driver who looks completely out of his depth in F1 right now. I think he debuted too soon and Sauber in 2013 is a terrible place to be a rookie. Has shown improvement since awkwardly crashing in Australia and China, but his crash in Canada was another typical rookie error and often finds himself fighting with cars that are slower than his. Could improve, could be a future candidate for ‘drivers who did amazing in touring cars/endurance racing but didn’t in F1’.
22. Max Chilton
Had some good battles with van der Garde, but even at a time where the Marussia was a better car by some margin. Seems to be unable to compare to Bianchi and simply lacks pace or skill. Unimpressive is all I can say.12th August 2013, 9:24 at 9:24 am #239503
22. Max Chilton – just doesn’t seem good enough to even deserve a Marussia seat in F1.
21. Esteban Gutiérrez – the fact I had to look up how to spell his name says it all I think.
20. Charles Pic – just seems to disappear in races at times
19. Valtteri Bottas – where has he been? – most races I don’t even notice him
18. Pastor Maldonado – inconsistent at best – though has rescued Williams season with his point
17. Giedo van der Garde – have actually been mildly impressed at times though has been difficult to show his quality in the car
16. Sergio Perez – I really thought he’d shine this season but even considering the poor car he’s been poor – the first few races he might as well have not turned up and then after a kick up the bum by his team he’s seemingly become one of the most reckless drivers on the grid.
15. Jenson Button – personally don’t rate him, he gets whatever the car has to offer and never any more, so this season has been poor
14. Felipe Massa – when are Ferrari going to replace him?
13. Daniel Riccardo – Cannot see what Red Bull see in him – usually qualifies well but then just goes backwards quickly
12. Romain Grosjean – just needs more points on the board. He impresses at times but can’t seem to combine an uneventful drive with a decent one
11. Nico Hulkenburg – would like to see a bigger team gamble on him next year as he’s been consistently outperforming his car over the last few seasons and even in the poor Sauber he has been impressive
10. Mark Webber – seems to have lost heart with the internal battle at Red Bull and I think its shown on track
9. Jules Bianchi – has very much impressed me and that is hugely impressive in a Marussia! Ferrari seat for next year possibly/hopefully?
8. Jean Eric Vergne – I think he’s having another solid season and personally would be placing him in the Red Bull for next year.
7. Adrian Sutil – Unlucky – just massively unlucky this year – from breakdowns to rogue wheel nuts he’s had the lot – although when nothing has gone against him he has performed exceptionally well
6. Paul Di Resta – decent as always and picks up points though rarely shines I find, still a good first half to the season and is keeping Mclaren behind Force India which is commendable
5. Nico Rosberg – was keeping Hamilton in check at first although that seems to have changed quite dramatically now, still a good season so far though
4. Lewis Hamilton – what a time to switch team – everyone thought it’d be a hard season for him switching from front running Mclaren – more like jumping from a sinking ship in reality – has performed well for Mercedes even with their tire issues
3. Kimi Raikkonen – Consistent, absolute consistency is his best asset. Can’t see it helping him to a second championship but his performance throughout the season has been immense.
2. Sebastian Vettel – its harsh putting him in 2nd in some ways as he’s cruising to his next championship – he has really outperformed Webber this year though against his other rivals it doesn’t feel like its a fair fight as the Mercedes tires cause them some sort of dilemma most races, the lotus’ pace varies dramatically race to race and quite frankly the Ferraris are just slow.
1. Fernando Alonso – has kept in the title race when he just clearly doesn’t have the car – trying to win the championship when the car is not really capable of coming higher than 5th in qualifying is proving challenging but his performance has been unparalleled.14th August 2013, 0:22 at 12:22 am #239504
Well after I had seen these rankings on this forums I thought it was interesting to see how the average mid-season rankings would look like. And after some calculations, this is how the mid-season driver rankings would look like if people could vote for it.
1 – Sebastian Vettel
2 – Lewis Hamilton
3 – Kimi Raikkonen
4 – Fernando Alonso
5 – Nico Rosberg
6 – Paul di Resta
7 – Mark Webber
8 – Nico Hülkenberg
9 – Adrian Sutil
10 – Jenson Button
11 – Daniel Ricciardo
12 – Romain Grosjean
13 – Jules Bianchi
14 – Jean-Eric Vergne
15 – Sergio Perez
16 – Felipe Massa
17 – Valteri Bottas
18 – Pastor Maldonado
19 – Charles Pic
20 – Guido van der Garde
21 – Esteban Guiterrez
22 – Max Chilton
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