F1's Overrated drivers

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    Which drivers past or present do you believe were generally overrated by others. Please note this topic is not about drivers you don’t like, just drivers you thought received more credit than they deserved.

    I personally believe that Stirling Moss is overrated. He is ranked by some along the very best ever, but the fact that he never won a championship makes it hard for me to believe that. I’ve heard how he was unlucky on occasions, but I don’t take those arguements, he should have done better in the races where he did finish second or third, or whatever.

    I think Ayrton Senna is also slightly overrated, either that or Prost is greatly underrated. He seemed to be one of the most entertaining drivers ever to watch, but Kobayashi is also very entertaining to watch. He had raw speed, but when people single him out as the best ever, that’s when I start to think “Come on, he wasn’t that good”. Though having said that, Senna only ever did two races during my lifetime.

    I also believe Mark Webber is overrated. He had some great races in 2010, but apart from those he was probably just above average. This year, Vettel has just out-classed him in every way. I think drivers like Rosberg, Glock or Heidfeld could have done just as well, if not better if given the same car.



    I dont think anyone is really overrated from the current crop, I did always think Mika Hakkinen was a bit of a loose cannon though. For drivers before my time, I would say Niki Lauda, he’s regarded as an all-time great but I’ve never seen him showing much speed.


    Felipe Bomeny

    Karun Chandhok is overrated; he’s not better than Bruno Senna just because he finsished fourteenth at Monaco. He’s a nice chap, very intelligent and such, but he is not better than Senna, Klien, or di Grassi in my eyes. You can’t judge HRT in 2010 by race results- qualy is the best way to compare HRT teammates.

    Kubica is very talented and has pure speed, but let’s face it: he’s no god. All the talk that “Oh, if he didn’t crash in that rally, he’d be winning races” annoys me a lot. He has a whole database of Polish fans who hail him as the Polish Senna, but I do not believe he would dominate Petrov like he did last year, nor do I believe he would win grands prix early on. In that regard, he is overrated.

    And I do agree with slr that Webber is overrated. He’s good but not the best; suitable for a number 2 driver role.


    Tom L.

    Senna was obviously one of the all-time greats but it is the fact that he died young as much as his talent on the track that led to his current “legendary” status. People are less likely to criticise his more questionable tactics and “win-at-all-cost” attitude than they would if it was one of his contemporaries, or a modern-day driver.

    Agree on Chandhok, and I’ve also always found Kubica overrated. “For sure”, he’s good at getting the most out of midfield machinery, but he’s also had some lacklustre performances (in particular in 2009, to a lesser extent in 2007) that people tend to forget. Of course, all drivers have bad days. But he hasn’t shown the same kind of unerring brilliance of someone like Hamilton, Alonso or Vettel – yet. Until he does, I don’t think we can talk of him in the same breath as the above drivers, as a lot of people do these days.

    (And before anyone says anything, I’m aware of the irony of talking about unerring brilliance and Hamilton at the moment! I was thinking more of the first half of his debut season!)



    1. Ayrton Senna

    2. Mark Webber

    3. Kimi Rikknen

    Portugoose, Karun is a good driver.

    on the flip side, Heikki Kovalainen is probably the most underrated driver on the grid.. He has properly good car control.


    Felipe Bomeny

    I never said Chandhok is terrible; he’s improved a lot since his GP2 days but he’s not better than Bruno Senna.



    Mine would be Raikkonen, Kovalainen, Fangio, Senna, Webber and Coulthard.

    Then there are drivers who are so underrated that they are overrated, like Chandhok and Davidson.

    Edit: Sutil

    Edit: Senna isn’t over-rated but more sainted like you say. Only remember for the good things and no one remembers the bad things. The opposite of Schumacher.



    I don’t think that Senna is “overrated” I just think that he is “sainted”.

    I am still slightly of the school of thought that Button is overrated, less so now since he went to McLaren though!

    I will say though “for sure” that I’ve never got excited about Jaime Algusuari.

    And I’ll throw into the hat that 7xWDC Michael Schumacher is overrated by a couple of WDCs.

    James Hunt too probably. Much as I love the idea of a playboy racer I believe that he was one of the poorer champions



    Putting my personal feelings aside because I quite like a lot of the drivers I’m going to mention I’d say: Chandhok, Kimi, Moss, D Hill, Senna, Kobayashi, Kubica and Rosberg. I’d like to say Clark but I’d fear I’d be murdered and although I just don’t see ‘it’ whatever it may be I can’t really argue with the sheer power of his stats.

    It’s hard to pick from drivers before my time. I don’t know if 2 of my all tyime favourites Gilles or Alesi are underrated or if they’ve become wildly over rated but I still love them.

    Edit: I stupidly forgot Sutil who’d be near the top of my list

    Edit again: I also forgt Jaime and Hunt so thank you James for reminding me!



    Biting my tongue not to explode all over those that deny Kubicas God status…. :p

    My opinion, Jaime Alguersuari is the most over rated mid pack driver at the moment. Buemi has Consistently out qualified him, and more importantly, out finished him. I dont think he deserves a race seat next season.

    Another highly over rated driver is Felipe Massa. Yes, he was runner up by a point, however after that, nothing exciting has come from him. Sure, you can blame it on the accident, but its tough to ignore his poor form early on in 2009. His performance was equal to Raikkonen’s, and yet he remained at Ferrari. To be honest, I think Ferrari felt a little bad for him, and thats why they kept him.

    The Most over rated driver though in my opinion, is Nico Rosberg. I have seen Nothing special, or spectacular about him at all. People compare him to Kubica, and say that his drive last year equaled that of Kubica’s. But lets look at last years results. Any race that Rosberg finished in front of Kubica not due to problems, you’ll see that he was in front of him by 3 positions at most. Kubica finished 5 positions ahead of Rosberg at most. Quite a difference. So for that, i think that Rosberg is the most over rated driver on the grid right now.



    I’m going to stick my neck on the line and, like Steph, say Gilles Villeneuve is over-rated. He was no doubt an entertainer but I’ve seen comments putting him in the top 4 drivers of all the time. Then the reasoning behind it is “Have you seen Dijon 1979”. Well yes but that was one race. Massa and Kubica had a similar battle at Fuji but no one would say Massa is one of the greatest drivers in the world.

    Gilles Villeneuve seems to be considered amazing because their are about 4 YouTube clips of him doing epic stuff. Yes he great but one of the best ever? I don’t think so.



    Polishboy I still like and rate Kubica I just felt that he got a bit too much praise :P I can’t wait until he gets back though. I hope that’s gone some way to stop you from spontaneously combusting! :)

    Can we debate this or is it just lists? I’m going to have a go because I just can’t stop myself and agree with Massa but say I did really rate his 09 season including early 09.



    Of the current pick of drivers, Sutil is easily the most-overrated in my book.



    My argument for not deeming Giles Villenueve and to an extent Senna as “overrated” is purely because of the praise that their peers gave, particularly to the former and also noticeably while they were alive rather than when they were dead.

    I’ve always felt that Hakkinen was a tad overrated as he was out-performed by Coulthard until he was handed the European Grand Prix of 1997 on a plate by DC. I like Coulthard but I will fully accept his limitations as a driver. Made me wonder what he could have done if he’d not given Hakkinen that first catalystic victory…



    I’d also like to add Alguersuari and Sutil, also Di Resta.

    Steph, I did want people to debate along with naming their overrated drivers.

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