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Who is your Driver of the Season?
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Who is your Driver of the Season?
Posted By: James Allen  |  16 Nov 2010   |  4:41 pm GMT  |  699 comments

All year we have been running a Driver of the Day survey after each Grand Prix, but it’s that time of year again, where we need to establish the Top Five drivers of the year, in order, with your Driver of the Season at the top.

Once again the first ten entries which match my selection, will receive a free signed copy of our review book of the season; James Allen on F1 2010: Five Rivals, One Champion, which is due to be published on 29 November. This will also be the closing date for entries.

Unlike last year there are many drivers who had really strong seasons. No-one was error free – the pressure of the competition was too high for that – but the way I see it we had more outstanding performances than we have seen for a long time. In no particular order I’m thinking of Vettel, Webber, Alonso, Hamilton, Button, Rosberg and Kubica, Barrichello, Hulkenberg, Kobayashi, even Petrov and Alguersuari, although they were rather more erratic.

We are looking for your Top Five, in descending order, of drivers who shone in 2010. Please submit your answers in the comments section below.


I’m delighted to say that Red Bull driver Mark Webber, who challenged for this season’s F1 world championship, has written the Foreword to the book.

The Australian led the title race for longer than any of his four rivals this season, but ultimately lost out to team mate Sebastian Vettel in the final round at Abu Dhabi.

It’s a great Foreword, a very honest appraisal of his season, here’s an extract,

…”Personally, I think I can be satisfied with my results. I enjoyed a purple patch at the start of the European season when I won back-to-back races at Barcelona and Monaco and was going for the trifecta in Istanbul prior to the collision. Silverstone was a fantastic moment for a couple of reasons and I was also very happy with some of my drives for second places, especially at Spa in those tricky conditions. Of course there were lows too, such as Valencia and Korea, and sheer frustrating ones like Abu Dhabi but that’s what elite sport is all about – repeatedly testing yourself at the very highest level against the very best in the world. Sometimes it pays off, sometimes it doesn’t. It’s what we get out of bed for!”

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699 Comments
  1. Kuba. says:

    5. Fernando Alonso
    4. Nico Rosberg
    3. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Lewis Hamilton
    1. Robert Kubica

    1. nickname101 says:

      Clearly beating Schumacher whilst on his back-foot seems to be meriting heaps of praise however all of. This is just a tacit admission that Schumacher is still highly rated,even by some of his fiercest critics. Schumacher has overtaken Alonso,Kubica and Button(quite a few times) can I ask, which top driver has Rosberg overtaken (excl starts)? Then why all these plaudits? I am a massive Schumacher fan and my realistic target for him was to be within 0.5 seconds of his teammate and that was achieved, I expect him to be far more competitive next season and he should beat his teammate then.

      1. DC says:

        Well Rosberg took Hamilton in Korea. And not many people have passed Hamilton this year… Nico is a lot better than people think I believe and knocking on the door of the top 5.

      2. Tom says:

        Rosberg was on a wet setup, he would of had the other guys ahead of him. And i think he could have won if Webber had not taken him out.

      3. tom says:

        no, rosberg was just quick

    2. Wayne says:

      No mention of Heikie, James? Odd, thought be did very well with the machinery.

  2. Galapago555 says:

    Just to say my top five, in descending order:
    1.- Vettel
    2.- Alonso
    3.- Webber
    4.- Kobayashi
    5.- Kubica

    1. Galapago555 says:

      My reasons:
      1.- Vettel. Youngest ever WDC. What else?
      2.- Alonso. Almost won the WDC driving the third (sometimes second) car on the grid.
      3.- Webber. Had a chance to win the WDC until the last race. Unfortunately for him, his team chose his team mate as #1 driver.
      4.- Kobayashi. The most entertaining driver of the season. Amazing overtakes.
      5.- Kubica. No longer a “will be”. Actually one of the best. Hope he has a decent car next year.

      1. Karley says:

        I actually agree 100% with this, even the reasons. Even Kubica’s reasons!
        :)

      2. Damian J says:

        You failed to include Hamilton in your top 5. According to many F1 commentators, it was only due to Hamilton’s outstanding driving in the first half of the season that enabled McLaren to maintain a credible WCC and WDC challenge in what was a third rated car. Contrast that with the many Alonso mistakes in the first half of the season!

      3. Galapago555 says:

        No I did not. I express my point of view about Leiws below, but I would add that IMO his performance during 2010 season has been worse than those of the ones I’ve picked.

        The article headline says “Who is YOUR driver of the season?” So I thought I was asked to give my opinion. And so I did.

      4. mtb says:

        “You failed to include Hamilton in your top 5.”

        People are entitled to choose whichever drivers they wish.

        “…that enabled McLaren to maintain a credible WCC and WDC challenge in what was a third rated car.”

        Most F1 commentators that I know of think that McLaren had the second-best car during the first half of the season.

        In the second half, Spa, Monza and Abu Dhabi were all circuits that suited McLaren the most, but McLaren only managed victory in one of those races.

    2. Andrew Brown says:

      How on earth can you not have Hamilton in your top 5 ? He did more overtaking moves than anyone, raced his guts out every race, five fastest laps only matched by Alonso and he seemed to be the talking point after nearly every race for one reason or another.

      Come on guys, some may not like Lewis but give credit where it is due!

      1) Vettel
      2) Webber
      3) Hamilton
      4) Alonso
      5) Button

      1. Galapago555 says:

        I do like Lewis. I admire his aggressiveness. One in a million. He almost clinched the title on his rookie year. That’s enough to let us know how good he is.

        But maybe you could agree with me that his second half of the season has been really poor. Especially the two errors to let Alonso overtake him (Korea and Brasil), that were so important for the title outcome. That’s the reason because I’ve not listed him on my top five.

        Besides, I think that both Koby and Robert deserved to be on the list.

        Can’t wait for the next season to start. Btw, it’s going to be the very first time to have FIVE champions on the grid, isn’t it?

      2. Pionir says:

        1985 had 5 champions on the grid:

        Alain Prost
        Nelson Piquet
        Niki Lauda
        Keke Rosburg
        Alan Jones

        Plus if you count future champions it goes up to 7:

        Ayrton Senna
        Nigel Mansell

      3. TM says:

        I’m a Lewis fan and I totally agree with you that his second half of season was really poor.

        But I would say equally that Alonso’s first half of season was really poor. To me, those two were on par with each other (in great ways and poor ways), though never really at the same time as each other!

      4. Agree with you with Lewis, Im a big Lewis fan, but after his win at Belgium it all just went a bit down hill… un characteristic mistakes, the move on webber, the crash in FP1 at Japan, letting Alonso past at Brazil..

        Still he beat Jenson

      5. Marc says:

        1985 only had 4 champions on the grid at the start of the season. It was Prost’s first championship, so he only emerged as a world champion during the season…

      6. Damian J says:

        You say that Hamilton’s second half was poor. But by equal measure so was Alonso’s first half of the season. At least in Hamilton’s defence, you could say that in the second half of the season the McLaren car was at some circuits a little woeful in comparison to the Redbull and Ferrari as they struggled to get to grips with their new exhaust blown diffuser and tight sprung suspension making it very vulnerable to undulating surfaces.

      7. mtb says:

        Hamilton made five unforced errors on five consecutive race weekends in the second half of the season.

        How many of the leading championship contenders experienced such an error-strewn run?

        And to think, after Spa many people on this site were calling him the most complete driver in F1.

    3. Alistair says:

      I judge, as follows, that Lewis Hamilton was the best DRIVER of the 2010 season. Now, there were four drivers in contention for the WDC at the final race of the season. But two of these, Webber and Vettel, had the fastest car all year by some margin. One of these, Alonso, had the second fastest car. The other, Lewis, had the third fastest car all year. On that basis, my DRIVER rankings are as follows.

      a) Lewis
      b) Alonso
      c) Vettel
      d) Webber
      e) Jenson

      Lewis made just one mistake all year: hitting Massa at Monza; and the instant DNF which resulted was very unfortunate. Lewis cleanly passed Webber at Singapore before being hit from behind; so I don’t count that as a second mistake. And running off circuit a couple of times ahead of faster cars who would inevitably overtake? I don’t classify those as ‘mistakes’ in any significant sense. The simple truth is that Lewis couldn’t have made many mistakes, by definition, if he was to take the championship down to the wire in only the third fastest car. Lewis continued to make many impressive overtakes in a sport which, on a cost-benefit analysis, doesn’t reward overtaking.

      Alonso made myriad mistakes early on in the season but recovered well with the second fastest car and a helpful team-mate.

      The Red Bull drivers had the best car by a mile; and still, the championship went down to the wire. Unreliability was a factor; but Webber’s lack of pace relative to his team-mate, and his team-mate’s many driving errors, were overcome by the sheer dominance of their car.

      One final comment on Vettel. Many will sing his praises. But I remain unconvinced. He’s overrated in my mind for several key reasons. First, his machinery has been underestimated. Vettel had had the best car in F1 for the last two seasons. Vettel has driven in 62 races: in 61 of those, his car was designed by Adrian Newey. His famous win at Monza was achieved in a car in which the erstwhile F1 employee, Seb Bourdais, qualified fourth. This shows you that the win certainly wasn’t all down to Vettel. The win of course was significantly aided by having Lewis, Kimi, Kubica, etc., all at the back of the field. And we all remember Lewis’s charging through the field, giving a wet-weather master-class. Second, Vettel hasn’t had a world class team-mate against whom to prove himself. Whereas we’ve seen Lewis (as a rookie) go head-to-head with Alonso (the then reigning double world champion), and whereas we’ve seen Lewis (a previous world champion) go head-to-head with Jenson (the then reigning world champion), Vettel’s team-mates have been less than stellar: Heidfeld for one race, Liuzzi for seven races, Bourdais for eighteen races, and Webber for thirty-six races. Third, Vettel can’t seem to overtake. In his defence, many F1 drivers can’t do this either; nevertheless, it’s a big weakness. Fourth, he lacks the fitness of a driver such a Lewis, who, in contrast, never seems physically flustered after a race and barely sweats: Vettel, in contrast, looks quite worn out…

      So I hope the fact that Vettel is approachable, likeable, and has now actually achieved something doesn’t hide his many weaknesses.

      1. Jonny White says:

        Spot on!

        You have managed to perfectly sum up Vettel and Hamilton’s respective strengths and weaknesses!

        My top 5 would be:

        1. Hamilton
        2. Alonso
        3. Vettel
        4. Kubica
        5. Rosberg

        6. Webber
        7. Button
        8. Kobayashi
        9. Kovy

  3. Craigy J says:

    1 – Vettel
    2 – Alonso
    3 – Webber
    4 – Kobayashi
    5 – Rosberg

  4. Rob says:

    VETTEL
    ALONSO
    WEBBER
    BUTTON
    KUBICA

    1. Anthony says:

      why button above hamilton?

      1. Rob says:

        Because i feel that althogh Lewis outscored him.He adapted to the new team etc far better than anyone expected him to, and showed his mature approach to working with the team his way is the way to go.Far to many drivers have gone to that team and had to fall inline with team policy and have not benifited from doing so.

      2. Tommy K. says:

        Jenson is just slow…..accept it people! Don’t get carried away by last year’s WDC! It was all down to Brawn’s supremacy. The guy is just slow and has very minimal overtaking capabilities!

  5. Andy Will says:

    Hi James, great blogs all season, really enjoyed reading your site daily and hope the book is as good as last years (it’s amazing what you forget over the course of a season.
    my cloices are:

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Hamilton
    4. Webber
    5. Rosberg

    Based all of these on who got what out of their respective car.

  6. Ronald Ooms says:

    5.Barrichello
    4.Button
    3.Webber
    2.Alonso
    1.Vettel

  7. Milton says:

    1. Webber
    2. Vettel
    3. Hamilton
    4. Button
    5. Kobayashi

    Webber deserves the #1 spot. He’s not brilliant, but showed to everyone that he’s consistent and does his talk on the track, instead of whinning about being number 2 inside the team.
    Button deserves a spot inside the top 5 too, everyone tough that Hamilton would beat him for good, but instead we saw that Button is a consistent and brilliant driver. Hamilton’s still better than him, ok, but not by much.
    Kobayashi, rookie of the year in my opinion (2 races in 2009 doesn’t make anyone a veteran). Exciting driver and he’s getting more and more consistent each race.

    1. Mery says:

      You must be talking about another Webber. The one I saw is was whining every race off the track in a paranoid fashion, drawing negativity to his own team and failed to deliver anything on the track since Monza, a few months now.

      This is the reason he lost it, nothing else. He created negativity and it served him back. If you read around forums, you will see his Brazil comments were when the people got totally fed up with him, even many of his fans, calling him Mark Whiner.

      My list:
      1. Vettel
      2. Kobayashi
      3. Kubica
      4. Hamilton
      5. Alonso

      1. Matthwd says:

        You must be kidding.
        Webber is by far the #1 driver this year.
        He delivered more than anyone expected and its as simple as that. He helped RBR win the WDC.
        He pushed Sebastian hard. He showed he wasnt just fast but he could overtake people when further back. Others were terrible at overtaking like Vettel and Hamilton.

      2. Emma says:

        I agree. Have no idea what Mery is on about. On the whole, Webber drove incredibly well this year, carving his way up the field and gaining positions when he needed to. Vettel seems to get flustered when he’s behind midfielders (and even the top drivers). A lot of people are on about Webber’s whining but frankly, don’t see what the fuss was all about. He was just answering questions constantly being asked of him from the media.

      3. Anthony says:

        well… he was the only one without any mechanical problem, and was clearly in the best car.. finished only 2 points above hamilton, and 3rd place to alonso in inferior cars… that says it all.

      4. Anthony says:

        I dont think 32 successful overtakes in the first 4 races is what I call “terrible”. (im talkig about hamilton)

      5. Matthew says:

        I think anyone calling for Webber as the Driver of the Season needs a little more objective analysis.

        It’s wonderful that Mark has a very open character and is refreshingly blunt in an otherwise PR-obsessed industry but I get the impression that this clouds opinion about his performance. Just because we warm to him and would love for him to win, it doesn’t make him the Driver of the Season. Moreover, arguing as some of you have done, that Mark has overachieved against low expectations and making that your basis for selecting him as 2010’s Number 1 is, in my opinion misguided.

        This is the pinnacle of motor-sport guys; expectations are high for everyone, especially for a driver who has piloted what is unquestionably the fastest car of the season. If I was being obtuse, I would say this: anything less than second place in the World Drivers’ Championship for Mark should be considered a failure – Mark finished third – and I’d end my argument there.

        However, indulging in further analysis will only help prove a point.

        Let’s start with qualifying. Mark was comprehensively smashed by Sebastian in qualifying (13-6), which is pretty comparable to Nico Rosberg’s beating of Michael Schumacher at 15-4, and which would have been 14-5 had it not been for Schumi’s 10 place grid drop at Spa. We all understand the consensus of opinion around Michael’s season (rightly or wrongly), so the fact that we can make this kind of comparison doesn’t flatter Mark at all.

        Going from memory (whish isn’t flawless!) it gets even worse when looking at Mark’s race pace, where he was faster than Sebastian Vettel in no more than 4 of the 19 Grand Prix this season: Barcelona, Monaco, Silverstone, and Spa. You could argue Mark was quicker in Hungary but that’s a bit tenuous for me, Sebastian was quickest all weekend and but for his error behind the safety car, he would’ve won by long way. Instead, he found himself tucked up behind Fernando’s Ferrari that looked that he might even have stolen a win had it not been for a sequence of hot laps from Mark in a car that was over a second-per-lap quicker in equal hands.

        So, Vettel beats Webber on qualifying performance, on race pace, on race wins and on points scored, despite suffering 2 terminal mechanical failures versus none for Mark. I find it very difficult to even build an argument for Mark being Red Bull’s Driver of the Season, let alone the whole paddock’s. Also, let’s not forget that Mark is no rookie; it’s not the same as Kobayashi putting in some awesome overtaking moves, or Kubica delivering points in sub-standard machinery. This is about a top driver battling for a WDC and beating the best-of-the-best drivers in the world.

        Yes, Mark showed that he has race-craft in Monza and in Singapore. Yes, he had a consistent season and his pace was rarely very far off Sebastian’s but that isn’t enough to earn him the title of Driver of the Season. He had a good year by anyone’s standards and a great year by his own, punctuated by the pleasure of watching him finally define his F1 career but ultimately, Vettel and Alonso stole the show and are both more worthy of the accolade.

        Despite this being the cliché of all clichés, it is certainly apt… the table doesn’t lie.

      6. Tommy K. says:

        Are you watching some other Championship mate?? Hamilton was BY FAR the BEST overtaker of the season! Only Kobayashi can compare to Lewis. What r u smoking?? maybe you need to watch again the races, I would suggest!

      7. johnf462 says:

        er really like mark, but he isn’t the best at overtaking, remember his touring car stuff in melbourne. Alonso was in the third, even fourth or fifth (istanbul), best car for the 1st half of the season, 2nd (excepting monza where the ferrari was the quickest) best for the 2nd half of the season. He very nearly won. They all made mistakes, pretty tough to call the best. In my opinion

        1)kubica – he is just that good
        2)alonso
        3)vettel
        4)webber (little to choose between the two)
        5)hamilton – unlucky to be this far down

      8. Pionir says:

        I can’t see how Webber can be #1 myself. In the fastest car but not champion or even 2nd says it all really.

        Consistency is good but not everything. After all, Ralf Schumacher was a consistent driver.

        In interviews he reminds me alot of Nigel Mansell…

      9. Tommy K. says:

        I agree! Mark was actually bad at the second part of the season. He collapsed under pressure!

  8. Marcin says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Kubica
    3. Hamilton
    4. Vettel
    5. Rosberg

  9. Oscar Soca says:

    Top 5 drivers 2010

    Alonso, vettel, weber, kubica, alguersuari

  10. Jonathan Powell says:

    1. Hamilton
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber
    4. Rosberg
    5. Button

  11. Dan says:

    In terms of getting more from the car than it wanted to give:
    Kubica
    Rosberg
    Alonso
    Hamilton
    Kovalainen

    1. Axu says:

      Actually, I think this is the most relevant criterium for a driver.
      On pure “achievement” criterium, the car is too big a factor.

    2. Jay says:

      Well ranked Dan. I think this is what JA is getting at. Best driver in the machinery they had.

    3. Axu says:

      I found this on axisofoversteer.com, provided by a reader named Zarniwoop.
      Makes you think (not the name :) , the comparison).

      HAM BUT VET WEB ALO

      Wins 3 2 5 4 5
      Poles 1 0 10 5 2
      Fault incidents 2 0 4 3 1
      Non-fault incidents 3 2 4 0 0
      DNF 3 2 3 2 1
      Maintained pos
      quali->race 4 4 4 3 3
      Improved pos
      quali->race 11 12 4 5 10
      Worse pos
      quali->race 4 3 11 11 6
      Fast laps 5 1 3 3 5
      Points 40 214 256 242 252

  12. Ben C says:

    1. Seb Vettel
    2. Rob Kubica
    3. Fernando Alonso
    4. Mark Webber
    5. Kobayashi

  13. adam says:

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Hamilton
    Webber
    kubrica

  14. ABAD says:

    Sorry, i pressed enter…

    So first, Alonso. Second, Vettel, third Webber, fourth Kubica, fifth Hamilton.

  15. Stephen says:

    1.Vettel
    2.Alonso
    3.Webber
    4.Kubica
    5.Rosberg

  16. Henri says:

    1) Vettel
    2) Rosberg
    3) Webber
    4) Alonso
    5) Kobayashi

  17. Martin B says:

    My top 5 is as follows:

    1 – Sebastian Vettel.
    The statistics rarely lie. He was the best over the whole year, which is why he won. Indeed, had it not been for some mechanical failures, he would have won it before Abu Dhabi. Yes, he made a couple of errors (Spa, Turkey) but like you said James, who didn’t?

    2 – Fernando Alonso.
    Could have won the Championship had it not been for a poor tactical call in Abu Dhabi. His late run of form was very consistant, and his performance in Singapore was top notch.

    3 – Lewis Hamilton.
    A solid year from Lewis. I may be wrong but I think he won the title for ‘most competitive overtakes’. Simply one of the most exciting drivers to watch and as the season wore on he exerted himself over Jenson, eventually beating him comfortably.

    4 – Kamui Kobayashi.
    Another exciting driver and does wonders for TV viewing. Some super overtakes and his ability to seemingly brake much later than anyone else (Suzuka, for example) made for some thrilling stuff.

    5 – Nico Rosberg.
    Easily outperformed Michael Schumacher and didn’t crack under any pressure which some suggested he may have been under from Schumacher. A solid year for him.

    My reasons for not including Mark Webber are that he made more mistakes than most, including Australia on Hamilton, Valencia’s ‘flying’ incident, Singapore with Hamilton and South Korea.

    Each driver had their own moments, Button earlier in the year with some of his good tyre calls, but dropped off as the year went on. Hulkenberg with his brilliant pole position lap in Brazil. This is what makes the top 5 really difficult to choose!!

    1. unoc says:

      your logic jsut failed… webber made 3 big mistakes
      Korea
      Valencia
      Australia… wasn’t that big but did hit hamilton.

      Vettel who you said made a few mistakes but who didn’t.. obviously less than webber who made too many for you.
      Turkey – teammate big no no
      Silverstone – hitting a force india to get past
      Spa – Hitting button and then later a force india again

      My list
      Alonso – first year at ferrari got team around him (although I hate this aspect of him), and was able to pull back from a mighty deficit to odds on fav for title going into the last event
      Webber – Big improvement over previous years, much more consistant, but let little things get in his way and talked himself out of it near the end, determined to gain points rather than win by the end. But with everything that happened he has really improved and shown himself well. + ‘not bad for a no 2 driver… jeez’ gets him an award just for saying that. I can’t think of another driver who’d say that..
      Kabayashi – Worked the tyres, worked the room. He alone provided more action than most others combined. When he wasn’t out in Q1 he made it several times to Q3, a bad car and a first year, but outperofmred long time driver de la rosa, ran hard with hidfeld, although it appears quick nick was just starting to get back into it. A faster car so he doesn’t need crazy stratergies awaits!
      Kubica – Weather you think its God or like me think of him as a polish hidfeld but slightly faster, he has put a renault further up than it should be against stiff competition in even stiffer cars (ok the mcalrens were stiff, but the point is ferrair and mclaren and redbull were all faster).
      Hamilton – A big year for hamilton, less pushy pushy speed and more thought. Seems to have learnt a bit from button and visa versa. Even with those silly mitsakes near the end he out performed his teammate.

      So….

      1 Alonso
      2 Hamilton
      3 Kubica
      4 Webber
      5 Kobayashi

      Probably should stick this in its own post

  18. David says:

    1: Webber (went airborne, Vettel took him out – drove consistently throughout the season

    2: Vettel – superb during qualifying, some engine failures and offs

    3: alonso – drove well throughout the year – won the opening race to make history – not keen on his slow down lap against Petrov

    4: Button – won two when all said he would be blown away by hamilton

    5: Petrov – thought he had a reasonable season – proves he has the pace and not frightened of other drivers

    1. Revilo says:

      He was blown away by hamilton, anyone who can’t see that is simply ignoring the facts.

      1. Andrew Brown says:

        Spot on Revilo, Hamilton is different class !

      2. PitCrew says:

        I would like to see Jenson get more credit for his fantastic drive at Monza. That long duel between his McLaren and Alonso’s Ferrari was one of the highlights of the season and epitomized what F1 is all about.

        On a counter-intuitive, high-downforce set-up, Button was flawless all race long, in marked contrast to Hamilton’s wheel-banging and even Alonso’s sloppiness later in the race. Alonso was only able to win the race thanks to superior pit work from his team, and his sense of relief at passing Button was palpable in the post-race conference. Button deserved to win that race.

        Button’s biggest problem all year has been qualifying, but his race pace, passing ability, tire-management, and cool head make him a serious challenge to the brilliant but mercurial Hamilton. Button’s move to McLaren has proven to be a good call on his part, and I have no doubt that Ron Dennis and Martin Whitmarsh see it the same way. He has carried himself well as world champion and is a pleasure to listen to in interviews. If McLaren can raise their car to the next level, it’ll be Prost v. Senna all over again, but without the acrimony.

    2. velvet_demon says:

      A reasonable season? Petrov? Kubica literally destroyed him.

    3. Steven says:

      Revilo beat me to it!

  19. saba says:

    still fernando alonso, he had a terrible start of the season (excluding bahrein) but a great recovery, just one crucial mistake at the end, plus ferrari started without an f-duct, flexy wings, blown diffuser etcetera and still managed to bring the fight to redbull,…

    1. Andrew Burley says:

      you forgot to mention the cheating in Germany.

      1. Imperfectropos says:

        Hey, save some fuel, my friend ;-)

  20. Ricky says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Rosberg
    5. Hamilton

  21. Graeme Nesbitt says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Kubica
    3. Alonso
    4. Kobayashi
    5. Webber

  22. Irish con says:

    5 Lewis Hamilton
    4 nick rosberg
    3 Sebastian vettel
    2 fernando alonso
    1 Robert kubica

  23. MIKE LEA says:

    My top 5 drivers of 2010 would be:

    1. Lewis Hamilton. In a car that was rarely a match for the Red Bull, and often behind the Ferrari in the second half of the yr, Hamilton kept himself in the hunt till the end. Yes, he made a few errors late-on, but only because he didn’t have the luxury of the quickest car and had to go for it. Top-class racer and the most exciting driver out there.

    2. Fernando Alonso. He had an excellent second half of the season, but his mistakes in the early races cost him badly. But, like Hamilton, he was forced to push a little extra because the Red Bull was quicker. He’s ruthless, cunning and totally focused on winning, precisely why he’s so successful.

    3. Sebastien Vettel. His final race run-in was superb and he is a deserving champion, but given the dominance of the Red Bull this yr, he should have wrapped the championship up much earlier. He is peerless when leading from pole, but coming up through the pack he has yet to show the same flair that makes Hamilton so good at overtaking. But he will be much stronger next yr as reigning champion and I think we will see a much more complete package…worrying news for his opposition!

    4. Mark Webber. Nobody expected him to match Vettel, but for two thirds of the season he did just that. He faded in the last few races, though, and couldn’t match Vettel’s pace, although he came close. He seemed to tighten up when the championship looked like his for the taking, but a win at Monaco is something he can smile about forever. Top bloke, but just a shade slower than Vettel when it mattered.

    5. Jenson Button. He seemed to make hard work of last yr’s championship and I expected Hamilton to blow him away at McLaren. But he drove superbly this season, with some spectacular calls in wet-weather races early on and a consistency that few others could match. His race pace is right up there with the best, but his qualifying was below par. If he wants to usurp Hamilton in 2011, he needs to qualify ahead of him more often than not…

    I think Kobayashi deserves a nod for best rookie. He seemed pretty crash happy and hopeless in the early races, but then he came on strong and became the overtaking king! He finished off De La Rosa’s career and managed to turn the snoozefest that is Valencia into a thriller! More of the same in 2011 please!

    Before the season I never would have predicted that Schumacher wouldn’t make my top 5, but he just didn’t seem to have the old magic. Hope he can get back in the mix next yr…we want all the champions racing wheel-to-wheel.

    1. Damian J says:

      I don’t agree with your ordering but your summary of the driver’s contribution is spot on!

  24. Rob says:

    1 Kubica
    2 Vettel
    3 Hamilton
    4 Rosberg
    5 Alonso

    1. Rob says:

      Edit
      1 Kubica
      2 vettel
      3 Alonso
      4 Hamilton
      5 Rosberg

  25. Jordi says:

    ALONSO
    also Lewis, Kubika and Rosberg.

    1. Jordi says:

      sorry!
      1.Fernando
      2.Lewis
      3.Robert
      4.Nico
      5.Sebastian

    2. Henri says:

      thats not 5 dude!

  26. Henry says:

    1. Webber
    2. Vettel
    3. Kubica
    4. Alonso
    5. Hamilton

  27. garza says:

    Alonso, best driver with slower car, relentless
    Webber, best all around performer, and cool headed (except at the end), would have won if team had helped
    Vettel, clearly the quickest, but should have clinched the WDC sooner with the fastest car, the less mature (except at the end)
    Hamilton, always in the fight and always fun to watch, rain or shine, good or bad car, soft or hard rubber, no excuses
    Rosberg, just for keeping Scumacher under control, but good overall performer
    Kubica comes close as well, I would love to see him in a better car

    Great season made better by this wesite, thanks James

  28. Ant says:

    Difficult but I’ll give it a shot, I would say as follows:

    5: Robert Kubica – continued to show the potential he has in a less than high performing car. He’ll only get better.

    4: Hamilton – still consistent and a continually threatening as he proved by still being in the hunt until the end.

    3: Webber – did anyone really give him a chance at the beginning of the year? Pressure more than likely got to him in the end but his gutsy displays and never say die attitude were a joy to watch, but I think he missed his chance.

    2: Alonso – what a come back! Some people really didn’t like the Germany episode but he’s a winner so it didn’t bother him. Took a car which wasn’t the best and squeezed every last piece of performance out of it and took the team along with him, he was also there when it counted except at the end. Seriously frightening competitor.

    1: Vettel – can’t be WDC and not be driver of the year. Had some self destruct moments but showed real character to come back from them and in the end fully deserved to be champion.

    Next year Vettel, Hamilton and Alonso should be great!! :)

  29. asd123 says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Rosberg
    3. Hamilton
    4. Alonso
    5. Vettel

    Kubica and Rosberg – both almost error free, have beaten their teammates by a mile and were fighting for better places that their car was able to. Kubica missed only one Q3 this season in just a medicore car!

    Hamilton and Alonso – Redbull were much faster but they’re still fighting for WDC till the very end, this should be enough why they deserve to be on top5.

    Vettel – at the end he was the one who won the WDC ;)

    1. Anthony says:

      well.. if I remember correctly, Rosberg lost a race because of an error (china)

  30. Tim. says:

    Alonso……

  31. Seb says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Hamilton
    3. Alonso
    4. Vettel
    5. Webber

  32. David Clark says:

    1: Webber
    2: Vettel
    3: Alonso
    4: Rosberg
    5: Hamilton

    James great site, first place I visit online ever day.

      1. Baktru says:

        Heh second place I visit online every day ;)

  33. Sergio says:

    1- Fenando Alonso
    2- Robert Kubica
    3- Sebastian Vettel
    4- Mark Webber
    5- Lewis Hamilton

    1. Sergio says:

      Reasons

      1. Fernando.
      - Massa’s score compared to other six main contenders shows the Ferrari’s potential.
      - FIA decisions in Canada, Europe and GB GP’s were a shame for the sport among others. 15-30 more points for Alonso.
      - Fernando in a Red Bull would result in a boring Championship, even with Vettel – Marko duo.
      2. Robert.
      - The huge advantage over his team mate.
      - Like Alonso can defeat drivers with better cars.
      - Solid and consistent driving.
      3. Sebastian.
      - Fast in qualy.
      - Similar to Massa: Fast in qualy and very strong running alone but sometimes has its “blackouts”.
      - He didn’t sleep very well in Abu Dhabi. He is vulnerable to the pressure and he didn’t know the situation in the race to hold that pressure.
      4. Mark.
      - The dismissed option by RB.
      5. Lewis.
      - The more agressive driver (along Kobayashi). He is capable of the best and worst.
      - Too many gifts and privileges by the FIA that has been a shame for the sport and an unreal final score.
      - He lives in his own world helped by his “media army”.
      - Don’t forget the Monaco fiasco with Jenson. Not bad Jenson. Brawn would be your personal Dennis & Marko, but you rejected the plan.

  34. Paul M says:

    My top 5 drivers of the season :
    1. Kubica
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber
    4. Alonso
    5. Hamilton

  35. F1 Kitteh says:

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Webber
    Kubica
    Hamilton

  36. Elle says:

    Top Five:

    1. Hamilton
    2. Webber
    3. Button
    4. Kobayashi
    5. Hulkenberg

    1. Ben N says:

      Can’t agree here!

      Button was nothing like better than Alonso or Webber… Hulkenberg had one amazing lap all season, credit where it’s due, it was amazing, but then qualified 15th the next race!

      Fair enough! I’ll eat my words if you get one of the 10!

      1. Racehound says:

        Im gonna give her some tissues and a bus fare back home and hope she dont call me again! #:)

      2. Elle says:

        Sorry, should have made it clear I was listing my personal choices rather than trying to predict JA’s choices.

        And my choices were based more on attitude than achievements so it would stand to reason they would be quite personal, what with being an opinion and all :)

        I clean forgot about Kubica though (literally forgot about him for the time it took me to write the list!). He should be there instead of Hulkenberg.

  37. Christian Backlund says:

    I would definitely choose Webber. I think he’s been on very good form this year and I still think he should have won. Really hope he’ll do it next year, but he was still in my opinion the best this year, especially given his ‘position’ within the team.

  38. Jack says:

    Kubica – took an average car and was consistently amongst the frontrunners in much faster cars. In a Red Bull he would have asily been a match for Vettel

    1. Alex says:

      Agree, but in the RedBull Robert would have been much more up in front then Seb.

  39. vila1988 says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Webber
    3. Alonso
    4. Hamilton
    5. Rosberg

  40. Will says:

    Driver of the season: Vettel
    Other drivers: Alonso, Webber, Kubica, Rosberg

  41. Christian Backlund says:

    Whoops just realised you wanted top five.. Here they are:

    Webber (As above)
    Kubica (amazing what he did with the Renault)
    Vettel (Quick, but error prone)
    Alonso (He’s Alonso, he’s always good)
    Rosberg (Always fast, pretty consistent – outpaced Schumacher which is impressive)

    1. Allan says:

      Have you counted the number of errors Seb made and compared them to the numbers for Hamilton, Webber and Alonso? I find I’d have to call them ALL error prone at that rate.

      1. Jimmy says:

        If you just look at the numbers, you’re totally right. The problem is that both of Vettel’s mistakes affected other drivers (Webber in Turkey, Button in Spa), and that’s why people tend to see him as “crash kid”. But, as you say, all top drivers made mistakes.

  42. rvd says:

    Kubica, Rosberg, Webber, Vettel, and Alanso.

  43. Tarcisio says:

    Vettel

  44. Kathryn Johnston says:

    5. Jenson Button

    4. Fernando Alonso

    3. Sebastian Vettel

    2. Mark Webber

    1. Lewis Hamilton

  45. Mayoor Mohan says:

    Ok JA this is how I would rank the drivers for the season:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kubica

    Ohh I sure hope you see likewise.

    BTW you always do a spectacular job here, great insights.

    Thanks.

  46. Sebastian vettel, no doubt about it !

    He’s 23 and already world champion while at same age neither Nigel Mansell, nor Ayrton Senna, nor Alain Prost were driving in Grand Prix racing !

    1. Peter C says:

      Nigel Mansell had to take out mortgages so that he could race & things were cheaper then, in real terms.

      Wasn’t Vettel lucky to get the treatment he’s had to be WDC at 23. Just blisteringly fast.

  47. James D says:

    1. Robert Kubica
    2. Nico Rosberg
    3. Sebastian Vettel
    4. Fernando Alonso
    5. Lewis Hamilton

  48. For sheer cojones and entertainment, it has to be Kamui Kobayashi, it was a joy watching him take on Alonso.

  49. Stuart says:

    Hi James,

    Great season and so difficult to call. I have been a fan and avid reader of your site for your expert and un-biased view of everything F1 and excellent insight.

    I have only commented a couple of times in defence of Schumi! I doubt he can regain his previous form but one more season and a couple of moments of brillaince would make me happy and pleased that he decided to return this year and maybe he might make the top 5 in next years poll. Hopefully Pirelli make an aggressive tyre to spice up the action even more next year.

    Driver of the year selection:

    1) Vettel
    2) Kubica
    3) Webber
    4) Alonso
    5) Rosberg

  50. Maciej R. says:

    My top 5:
    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Kubica
    4. Rosberg
    5. Webber

  51. Guilherme says:

    1.Fernando Alonso
    2.Sebastian Vettel
    3.Mark Webber
    4.Lewis Hamilton
    5.Nico Rosberg

    1. I already know I’m not going to win the book, but what the heck. What Alonso accomplished this season, team orders or not (but does anyone believe that, deep inside, Red Bull wanted Webber to win instead of Vettel? there will always be nºs ones and nºs twos), with clearly a inferior car, and pushing the team to its limits was incredible.
    2. No doubts about it, Vettel merits this championship, but he had a far greater car than the opposition and did a lot of mistakes.
    3. Every “almost great” of F1 drivers has a chance to win the championship. Irvine in 1999 couldn’t get it, Button last year won it. This year was Webber’s chance. He deserved better but failed in the most important races of his life. one must though remember all the drama he had to fight.
    4. Slow and erratic car, but what a performance at Spa.
    5. Confirms is status as one of the fastest on the grid. Managed well the pressure of having Schumacher as a teammate: also the first driver to outperform consistently Schumy in the same team). Give him a faster car and he will bring you greater results.

    Others I liked:
    Michael Schumacher: the man is 40y old and didn’t race for three years: to come again racing against kids with half his age, risking all his status is outstanding, a true champion!
    Kamui Kobayashi: best japanese driver ever on F1? Don’t know, but one of the most exciting, definitely.
    Robert Kubica: once he gets on a top-3 team he will win the championship. Given the awful Renault he had, he did very well.

  52. Ed Hewitt says:

    Has to be Webber. Years classed as not being good enough and unlucky. Came so close of becoming champion, think it was his last chance.

  53. Simon Teevan says:

    1) Vettel
    2) Alonso
    3) Rosberg
    4) Kubica
    5) Kobayashi

    6) Petrov

  54. Jon says:

    My Drivers of the season have to be

    5. Jenson Button for challenging Lewis so much throughout the season, and some great strategy calls.
    4. Rosberg. Outperformed the great Schumacher all year round.
    3. Mark Webber for such a great season.
    2. Alonso – for getting the most out of the ferrari, and coming back from 46 point behind to narrowly miss out on the championship.
    1. Sebastian Vettal, basically for all the Poles and winning the championship

  55. Bob Q says:

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Kubica
    Webber
    Rosberg

  56. Bayan says:

    1 – Vettel
    2 – Alonso
    3 – Hamilton
    4 – Webber
    5 – Rosberg

  57. Roger Carballo AKA Architrion says:

    1.- Alonso and Vettel far away from the rest (and I can’t stand the guy when he gets his finger up).
    2.- Then Webber. Absolutely fantastic watching him fighting his own team.
    4.- Hamilton kicking Button’s bottom.
    5.- Kobayashi teaching the big guns overtaking science.
    6.- Alguersuari, beating Buemi 5 times in a row.
    7.- James Allen, giving really insightful information, keeping balance, staying away from fanboys, and improving this site to the point to make me addict.
    8.- Every single reader/writer, who has made possible to have fun talking about something we all like, Formula 1.

  58. Ben N says:

    Ooooh good question James!

    Top 5… I can name several that have impressed!

    I’m not going to think about what you think! (if that makes sense) and just plump for the ones I personally think have been the Top 5 drivers.

    1) Sebastian Vettel
    2) Lewis Hamilton
    3) Robert Kubica
    4) Fernando Alonso
    5) Nico Rosberg

    It was difficult to omit Mark Webber, and that’s one reason why mine won’t match yours James! I feel that Seb has actually outpaced him for most of the season, barring Monaco and Spain where Webber was faster.

    Fernando Alonso would be higher but for his general attitude. He impressed me with his upbeat nature after Silverstone which surprised everyone, but Massa would never have moved over for Raikkonen and I think this is a streak in Alonso that is rubbing on the team. His gesture towards Petrov after Abu Dhabi was disappointing. In terms of driving he has been in the top 3.

    Kubica and Rosberg would both have been title contenders in the Red Bull so are worth a mention for battling drives.

    Hamilton impressed me majorly in the first half of the season but I have been more disappointed in the second half. I hope his approach to racing doesn’t change because of Monza/Singapore.

    Honourable mentions to Kobayashi (some excellent drives, see Valencia/Silverstone/Japan), Button (a sterling effort in his first McLaren season), Chandhok (whose efforts were underated) as well as Kovalainen (invariably the quickest driver in the “lower championship)!

    Good competition James, and apologies for an essay when you only wanted 5 lines!

  59. Paul Gibson says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Webber
    3. Vettel
    4. Hamilton
    5. Button

  60. Karen Heath says:

    My top 5 drivers for this year are
    1. Sebastian Vettel – he won, kept a level head when it mattered so for me has to be driver of the year.
    2. Mark Webber – was not really expected to keep beating Vettel but did a great job all season, such a shame he fell at the final hurdle
    3. Jenson Button – was expected to be well and truly beaten by Lewis, but put on a really good show, beating Lewis on many occasions
    4. Lewis Hamilton – Took a lot of risks, some worked some didn’t, but a real racer and entertainer
    5. Fernando Alonso – made some silly mistakes at the start of the season but had an amazing run after gifted win by Massa

  61. Lee says:

    1) Kobayashi – despite the first few races being a bit tame (for him), he later came alive and brought some genuine excitement.

    2) Vettel – never gave up, and would have sealed the championship with races to spare had he not suffered mechanical failures.

    3) Kubica – Out-drove the car most of the season and put it in places it shouldn’t have been.

    4) Button – I’m not a fan of him, but he performed better than I (and I suspect many others) expected against Hamilton.

    5) Rosberg – Was clearly the better of the Merc drivers, and by some margin. Not what I expected to see.

    I’d also put an honorary mention to Kovalainen – he seems to have found a team that I think will bring out the best of him, and he seems genuinely happy there. Here’s hoping Mike will come up with a car they can mount a decent midfield challenge with next year!

  62. Angry Walrus says:

    Alonso – I don’t like the man but he pulled that ferrari up far ahead of where it should have been. Sure there were a few mistakes en route, but probably no more than the competition.

  63. Wallbreaker says:

    1. Fernando Alonso because of his believe in his teams abilities to fight back and his title chance even when it seemed to far away

    2. Sebastian Vettel because of his way to handle situations like South Korea and his incredible comeback in the last two races.

    3. Mark Webber because nobody expected him to be that strong (sometimes far better than Vettel)

    4. Jenson Button because he had a great first year at McLaren, no one would have believed before the season he could beat Hamilton several times.

    5. Nico Rosberg because he out-performed Schumacher, something no one thought it would be possible

  64. 1) Webber
    2) Vettel
    3) Kobayashi
    4) Alonso
    5) Button

    …because Webber had a great season and I really wish he’d won. Will he get the chance again?

    Vettel – can’t knock the fact that he DID get the championship.

    Kobayashi – ahead of Alonso because he proved that unlike the Spaniard, he can overtake when it matters.

    And finally Button who put in a solid performance having just moved teams, and having 5 race engineers across the season, which I think was more significant that Hamilton’s performance within a team he already knew well.

  65. Grant says:

    Hello James.

    First is Vettel. The champion.

    Second is Hamilton. Always giving 120%.

    Third is Alonso. Drove the car and the team better than was capable.

    Fourth is Button. Established himself in Lewis’s team with some outstanding driving.

    Fifth is Webber. Feeling second fiddle he really raised Red Bull’s overall game.

    Just outside in Sixth is Rosberg. Having never won a race, he joined his new team at the same time as a seven times world champion and out performed him all season.

    That’s my view. Thanks.

  66. Brandon Merrell says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Button

  67. Steve J says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Kubica
    5. Hamilton

  68. Brian M says:

    1. Vettel – very fast, the pressure didn’t get to him
    2. Alonso – fought through bad luck, but his team let him down
    3. Webber – he wrote the intro to the book, but lost the championship in a monster car and had the best luck of the bunch
    4. Rosberg – spanked his team mate more than anyone could have predicted
    5. Hamilton – he’s very fast, he can pass, and he’s from the UK, so I assume you’ll have him on the list

  69. Carlos says:

    Hi, James
    thanks for your detailed analysis every week – they help very much to understand this wonderful sport.
    My driver of the season is Fernando Alonso – missed the Drivers championship by 4 points with a sensibly worse car and got a much better performance compared to his team-mate Felipe Massa

    Keep up the good work!
    Carlos – Zaragoza – Spain

  70. Chris-J says:

    What a wonderful F1 season we’ve just witnessed. It should go down as one of the best championships in F1 history.

    My top 5 F1 drivers of the year are:
    S. Vettel
    M. Webber
    F. Alonso
    L. Hamilton
    J. Button

  71. ponq says:

    1) Vettel – some errors, some bad luck, but also some outstanding performances
    2) Alonso – took over Ferrari quickly. Very strong races in the 2nd half of the season
    3) Webber – strong underdog
    4) Button – Very strong start in his new team. If it wasn’t for Vettel at Spa JB would have been there also the last race
    5) Hamilton – Good races but also threw it away in Monza and Singapore.

    -=-=-

    6) Schumacher – kept improving despite the much heard ‘too old, lost it, rusty’-comments. Looking forward to his 2011 season.
    7) Kobayashi – Shown he is not a 1 day fly.
    8) Rosberg – stronger than expected in the Mercedes.

  72. Mary Holmden says:

    1. Button
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber
    4. Kubica
    5. Rosberg

    I’ve no time for whiners or those helped by team orders

    1. Galapago555 says:

      “no time for … those helped by team orders”

      So what’s Vettel doing on your list?

    2. Racehound says:

      but plenty of time for applying lipgloss mentality to motor racing! Keep up the good work.

    3. Galapago555 says:

      “I’ve no time for whiners…”

      But you have time for a driver that publicly accussed his team mate of being mad?

    4. Steve W says:

      I guess the only odd one out is Kubica then..?

  73. notme says:

    Thank you!
    This is just for fun! :)

    1- Hamilton – (let’s face it, the McLaren car was crap! He drove his heart off!)
    2- Nico Rosberg
    3- Jaime Alguersuari (nice surprise!)
    4- Jenson Button
    I don’t have a 5th one, they are ALL BAD!!!

  74. Vittal Sirigiri says:

    5. Robert Kubica
    4. Lewis Hamilton
    3. Mark Webber
    2. Fernando Alonso
    1. Sebastian Vettel

  75. James Mc says:

    Firstly what a great season which I think is in part because no-one was perfect, every one of the top drivers made mistakes and I think that is what brought it down to the wire. I think if we had someone in Schumacher 2001 form this could have been a very boring season. Heres my drivers.

    #1 – Mark Webber, a fighter to the end who when he is on form is unstoppable. He comes across as such a genuine and likeable chap, he’s been through some cr@p but still keeps that fighting instinct. Any lesser may would have dropped his head after Silverstone and Turkey but he still kept brining in the results even if they were not on the top spot.
    #2 – Alonso, Its unbelieveable that someone can have so much belief in his own skills and abilities to make the comments he did in Silverstone. To drag that Ferrari to the results he has seen this season is amazing.
    #3 – Vettel, So strong and consistent with his qualifying, flashes of brilliance and he done the job better than the rest, that’s why he is champion. But he still has to prove with his overtaking.
    #4 – Hamilton, A pure racer, there is never a dull moment, hes they guy you want to see racing as he is thoroughly entertaining.
    #5 – Button, Everyone thought Hamilton would wipe the floor with him but he is the new Professor!

    Cheers James for running such a fantastic website, its been a pleasure to read as soon as I get into work on a Monday morning after a race.

  76. Ace says:

    Alonso, for getting that Ferrari to the championship position it was at, using his “big talent”

    Webber, for making very few mistakes and keeping cool throughout the season even when his quotes blew up in his face.

    Hamilton, for essentially the same reason as Alonso. The McLaren team as a whole impressed me this year as they were always in the championship fight even though their car was not up to par.

    Vettel, for openly enjoying F1 with comments like “what’s the fastest lap time” when his race got boring.

    Kobayashi, for balls to the wall racing, especially in Japan. Seriously amazing.

  77. Andy C says:

    The fact that there have been so many great performances would make a top 10 difficult (and none of mine would include Michael on his comeback – I suspect he’ll be back on his game next year although will not ever regain his previous success).

    With that in mind……

    1.) Robert Kubica > has been absolutely excellent this year, and has achieved some really excellent results. In a faster car I think he would have been drivers champ this year. The other drivers better watch out in the coming years.

    2.) Alonso > has provided real leadership at Ferrari this year, and has driven fantastically at the back end of the season. I don’t like his hissie fits at points, but there is no doubting his talent.

    3.) Sebastian Vettel > I think Seb and Mark have both driven very well in periods and I couldnt really separate them, other than Sebs quali performances have been excellent, and have been the deciding factor for me. If he can improve some of his overtaking mistakes he could go on to win another couple of championships in his time in F1.

    4.) Mark Webber > I am a huge fan of mark and he has been the most improved driver over the last two seasons for me (in my opinion)

    To have pushed Vettel so hard this year I hope he stays with Redbull and adds to his wins tally next year. I just wish he’d won!

    5.) Jenson Button > I have been impressed by how Jenson has settled in at McLaren, and he has by no means been “destroyed” like most people said he would be. Although Lewis has had the upper hand in Quali (where he is right in the top 2 of quickest natural drivers in my books), I think Jensons race day prowess has proven consistent and well thought out. I’d really like to put Jenson and Lewis as my 5th entry, but I know James won’t so I’ve picked one!

    The interesting thing is I see so many comments about Jenson being finished, but lets be honest most people accept Lewis Hamilton is the real deal and is super fast. So being behind him is not necessarily a surprise or something that should finish his career.

    In summary….. the most interesting thing for me, is I could have included another handful of drivers quite easily in the top 5 Lewis, Rosberg , Kobayashi (the guy is brilliant).

    I’d also like to say I’ve been impressed by some of the rookies as the season has gone by. Kobayashi and Hulk have really settled in well now, and I think Petrov looks like he could be good too, given time to develop.

    I hope Bruno Senna gets a decent drive next year, as I rank his potential as good too.

    1. Tomek says:

      It was interesting to note that Kubica has complimented Kobayashi by saying that Kobayashi was braking very late during the Abu Dhabi race. Reminds of Alesi who was famous for his late braking.

  78. Vettel – Even had Mark won the WDC, Seb had to be No 1

    Webber – So near but, in reality there were only moments of greatness but too many off days

    Hamilton – This is the one guy above everyone in the field who gives it everything every time he sits in the car.

    Button – See comment about Mark Webber

    Kubika – With the exception of the last race no driver other than Hamilton has achieved more with a decidedly second rate car.

    6th place would reluctantly go to Alonso :
    he can’t score higher in my view because he was only a championship contender because he had an inferior teammate and even then he would only have won the WDC by stealing points off Massa.

    What’s worse, he can see nothing wrong in that.

    His final lap gesture to Petrov said it all.

  79. Kim Andrews says:

    Doesn’t match the results, and doesn’t match my personal preference, but as far as putting in the best drive regardless of equipment, I’d have to go with:

    Alonso, Hamilton, Vettel, Webber, Button.

    Of course, lower-ranking drivers put in good efforts too, but that’s the top 5 IMV.

  80. Richard M says:

    5. Rosberg – Trounced his teammate drove consistently well all year.
    4. Button – Made the least amount of errors out of the top five drivers, drove superbly utilising his brains and experience in Australia, China and Monza. If he had faired better on Saturday he would of been right up in contention at Abu Dhabi. All this in his first season at Mclaren in a car not designed with him in mind and going through multiple race engineers.
    3. Webber – Dominated the middle part of the season with wins in Barcelona, Monaco, Silverstone and one in Turkey taken away from him. Drove with grit and determination through adversity all season battling against a very talented teammate and coming very close to beating him.
    2. Vettel – Won the WDC, was in the fastest car and was the fastest driver out of the two of them with 10 pole positions, untouchable when out in front.
    1. Alonso – Outperformed his car and after the bedding in period in the first half of the year drove faultlessly almost matching the Red Bulls for pace depsite a slower car with a stand out performance in Singapore. He knew precisely what he had to do to win the WDC and very almost achieved it.

  81. Reiko Lill says:

    My top5 drivers of the year are:

    1. Kubica
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber
    4. Alonso
    5. Kobayashi

  82. Tom Adams says:

    Alonso, inferior car and took it to the bulls.
    Shame Ferrari messed up the strategy otherwise he’d be a 3 times Champ.

    1. Racehound says:

      Got it in a nutshell Tom, and no lipgloss in sight!! Dyer is dead meat at Ferrari….bring on Flashio to run Ferrari and a better teammate and they will dominate next year. Massa and Smedley on the way out too “for sure” !! #:)

  83. Simon Emms says:

    Hard one to call as all the top 5 finishers gave worthy performances. ‘Maaaaark’ showed the absolute grit and determination we want from sportsmen and women; Alonso showed his pure class and why everyone else is right to fear him in a Ferrari; JB confounded the naysayers with an excellent first season at Mclaren and a win in Australia that is one of the best drives ever; Lewis drove beautifully and aggressively all season; and Vettel was by far and away the fastest man all season.

    However, in this melée of magnificence, I’m going to throw a left-field suggestion as driver of the season. Kamui Kobayashi.

    I can imagine the minds of people now, split pretty much 50%-50% between “you what!” and “actually, possibly” so I’ll make my case. All season he drove as intelligently as Jenson, as aggressively as Lewis, as fast as Sebastian or Fernando and with as much determination as ‘Maaaark’. And in his first full season, he outdrove his car every weekend from it’s middle-of-the-midfield ability.

  84. Axel says:

    It’s been an awesome season, with multiple brilliant drives from several drivers… It will definitely be hard to pick the top ones…

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Rosberg

    I think I might lose out with my pick of Rosberg, but I feel like he did an amazing job. Withstanding the pressure of being Schumi’s teammate, regularly achieving positions unexpected of a car which was not developed from almost half-way through the season, and remaining calm despite not being as high up as expected at the start of the year show he has become an extremely mature driver who definitely can challenge for the championship in a stronger car.

  85. Richard M says:

    What I think it will be:
    5. Kubica
    4. Webber
    3. Hamilton
    2. Alonso
    1. Vettel

  86. Nathan Hughes says:

    1. Mark Webber
    2. Fernando Alonso
    3. Sebastian Vettel
    4. Robert Kubica
    5. Jenson Button

  87. Dan Richards says:

    For me it’s:

    1. Lewis Hamilton
    2. Fernando Alonso
    3. Sebastian Vettel
    4. Robert Kubica
    5. Mark Webber

  88. GP says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Webber
    3. Alonso
    4. Rosberg
    5. Button

  89. Marty McSuperfly says:

    As Brian Clough would say, the table never lies.

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Button

    Hard to argue that Kubica or Rosberg deserve to place higher than a title contender. In terms of exceeding my expectations, my picks would be Barrichello, Chandhok.

  90. Rebecca Ryan says:

    In descending order:

    5)Jenson Button
    4)Fernando Alonso
    3)Mark Webber
    2)Lewis Hamilton
    1)Sebastian Vettel

  91. Ben says:

    Only 5? This is going to be tough. Last year it was difficult to get up to 5, this year it is difficult to get below 8. I’ll have to get back to you.

    1. Fardin says:

      Got the same problem. I can at least think of 7, and difficult to put them in order. Webber, Hamilton, Kobayashi and Kubica were great to watch. Vettel was awsome at qualifying and leading races. Rosberg and Alonso beat their teammates by far. What a great season it was.

    2. Ben says:

      I have had a think. Here is my list and analysis.

      Quick list:

      1. Vettel
      2. Hamilton
      3. Rosberg
      4. Alonso
      5. Kubica

      Notable others: Kobayashi, Kovalainen, Button
      Did not make the grade: Webber, Massa

      Analysis:

      1. Sebastian Vettel (2009 position #4)
      On a quick glance of the season, it is easy to dismiss either Red Bull driver from the top five because the speed of the RB6 made every other car on the grid look like it was in a different formula at most tracks. So to have only picked up 9 wins in the season surely meant its drivers underperformed.

      However, a deeper analysis shows that while the RB6 was indeed supreme at most tracks, it should only have won at 14 circuits this year. The McLaren was faster in the wet conditions at Shanghai, the Ferraris and McLarens dominated at Canada and Monza, the Ferraris were quicker at Hockenheim and the McLarens were quicker at Spa.

      However with Webber only managing to get 4 victories and Vettel 5, it seems that their drivers significantly underperformed. However, when I looked deeper, it emerged that Vettel actually should have won 12 of the 14 races this year, and he only lost 2 of those victories due to errors on his part.

      Those errors were not managing the gap to the safety car in Hungary and two minor mistakes in Singapore, one in qualifying and not taking the initiative to stay out when he saw Alonso pit.

      The other five issues that prevented him from securing his 12 potential victories were: engine unreliability in Bahrain and Korea, a mechanical problem with his car that cost him pole in Turkey, a puncture at the start in Silverstone, and a brake failure in Australia. While, of course, it is impossible to say he would have achieved this victories – particularly Turkey and Silverstone – we will never know. But to say he underachieved his car is also unfair.

      While I have been very critical of him during the season, his number-one hand gesture particularly grating with me, the way he reacted since winning the championship in Korea has made me reverse my opinion regarding him. Rather than being a show of arrogance it was a method of self affirmation; far from being the wonderkid the Red Bull marketing department would have you believe he was actually quite fragile underneath.

      The fact that he paid tribute to Lewis Hamilton when the journalists were trying to provoke a response from the pair in the press conference regarding him taking Hamilton’s record as youngest WDC demonstrates that. Far from believing he was vastly superior than his peers, he looked up to them and had a tremendous amount of respect.

      2. Lewis Hamilton (2009 position #3)
      Had this poll been conducted after Spa, Lewis Hamilton would be top of most peoples’ lists. Bar a poor qualifying performance in Australia (which he later redeemed with his best drive of the season) he had driven a flawless season.

      However, then Monza happened. And then Singapore happened.

      After Singapore the tale had turned on its head, suddenly Lewis Hamilton was the worst of the five front running drivers, he was throwing a guaranteed championship away.

      Such is the fickle nature of most F1 fans and journalists, a driver is only as good as his last two races.

      However, while Monza was 100% Hamilton’s fault – and stemmed from the frustration of being unable to match his team mate’s pace, which rarely happened during the season – Singapore was a racing incident and was actually a perfect example of why, two races earlier, Hamilton had been the performer of the season.

      At most race tracks the McLaren had not been on the pace of its rivals, yet Hamilton had managed to finish in places that it should not have finished. This was not because of the mythological ‘out driving the car’ talent legend would have us believe is possible – but because as soon as he sensed a whiff of an opportunity he grabbed it with everything at his disposal.

      Whilst it did not pay out in Singapore, and did not exist in Monza, it once again made Lewis Hamilton the most exciting driver in Formula 1.

      3. Nico Rosberg (2009 position N/C)
      You know, I have never really rated Nico Rosberg before. I always felt he was an invisible presence on the grid. Maybe it was because the only TV coverage Williams used to get was when Nakajima did something spectacularly expensive but bar one or two drives I have not really noticed him.

      2010 changed that, sort of. He was still quite invisible, but he suffered from being in a car that was rarely ever challenged by a competitor. The Mercedes usually sat in a gap that was between the headline teams and the midfield and allowed Rosberg to trundle to safe points positions in most races.

      That doesn’t sound too exciting, but it is only a part of the story.

      The most obvious other part of that story is Michael Schumacher. Of course, any analyst can tell you that beaten even the most successful driver in the sport is not as headline worthy as the tabloids would like to make out, given how quickly Formula 1 develops at. But Rosberg did not just beat Schumacher, he outscored him two to one. If Schumacher was reigning GP2 champion, he would be looking for another drive after being crushed like that. It is only the fact he is Michael Schumacher that has meant he will still be driving next year.

      Nico Rosberg final delivered on the potential he has been promising since his arrival in the sport. But what is most impressive is not how he managed his car, but how he managed his mind.

      When Schumacher arrived in the team, he demanded number 3 on his car. He demanded a certain side of the garage. Everyone was talking about how Nico Rosberg had landed the opportunity of a lifetime at Mercedes to become a grand prix winner, to fight for the WDC – but how that had been pulled from under his feet with the arrival of Michael Schumacher. He was to be Schumacher’s new Barrichello.

      Did Rosberg listen to any of that? No. Did he respond to any of the attempts by journalists to provoke him on the issue? No. What he did was get in the car, drive it as fast as he could and when Schumacher finished behind him event after event, instead of pulling the rug from under his feet, he had pulled the rug from under the feet of all the speculators and so called experts who had said Schumacher’s arrival at Mercedes signalled the end of Nico Rosberg’s career.

      4. Fernando Alonso (2009 position #2)
      This is a controversial decision. There is definitely a case for Alonso being top of this list; he did, after all, put in the most incredible come back this season. We all had him tipped for the championship going in to Abu Dhabi. Most were saying he was the rightful winner after coming back from his situation in Silverstone.

      However, we forget why he was in that position in Silverstone. He made critical early season errors, most notably at Monaco. He demonstrated a high level of impetuousness; for example, at Silverstone, when he failed to give back his position to Kubica when every precedent established in F1 meant it certain he would receive a penalty if he did not. His hand gesture at Petrov following the Abu Dhabi grand prix, despite being at the heat of the moment, is inexcusable.

      He also let his emotional frustration impact his performance at several races, most notably at Valencia where he was too focused on Hamilton’s penalty than dealing with his own performance. While Alonso is the master when it comes to processing all the variables of a race, after the safety car, Hamilton was not a variable that affected his race strategy, regardless of the rights and wrongs of the stewards’ decision.

      And of course, it is impossible to review his season without taking into account the events at Hockenheim.

      From a purely analytical point of view, Ferrari made the right decision to switch the drivers – there is no doubt about that. But Formula 1 is not pure science, it carries the hopes and dreams of fans and drivers as well. Massa’s form after Germany was notably subdued. There is definitely a case to be made that Alonso ended up giving more points to his contenders because Massa was not performing than the seven points he gained.

      While those keen to defend Ferrari’s actions in Hockenheim are quick to say that Formula 1 is a team game and drivers should act in the best interests of their team. However, Alonso’s greatest weakness is that he is not a team player. He had demonstrated this throughout his career. And I would argue that it is that which cost him the WDC.

      There is no argument that he is not the fastest driver in the team. Clearly, with or without team orders he is the fastest driver in the team. However, to secure the both titles a team needs both drivers to perform. For the constructors, it is obvious; but in the drivers, the leading driver needs his team mate to take points off of his competitors. By totally crushing Massa in ever respect, Alonso has ended up weakening his own position, and when added together with the other faults from the first half of the season is why I feel that even his spectacular comeback does not elevate him above the three drivers I have picked for my top three.

      5. Robert Kubica (2009 position N/C)
      If you asked me pick the top three drivers in the sport prior to Bahrain I would have picked Hamilton, Alonso and Kubica.

      During 2010, my opinion of Robert Kubica has improved, and it is only the emergence of Vettel that makes choosing a definitive top 3 a difficult decision. In my opinion, these are the four drivers that get the most from their equipment and the only reason I would drop Kubica from the top three is that he is the only one who has not yet proven his incredible potential.

      Of course, he has not had the opportunity, and he has arguably got more from his equipment than any other driver this season. He and Rosberg are the only two drivers to get podiums aside from the drivers of the top 3 cars. He and Rosberg finished very close to Massa who was in a vastly superior car.

      However, unfortunately for Kubica, the true potential of the Renault is difficult to gauge. Is Vitaly Petrov a GP2 protege or a blundering pay driver? I suspect he is a mixture of the two, a blundering almost-protege, as he has demonstrated some memorable performances, both good and bad.

      However, there are other methods to gauge how well Robert Kubica has performed, and while I can’t elevate him higher than fifth as most of it comes from analysis rather than from results, he has definitely put in a top 5 performance.

      The reason for this is to look at where Renault were last year. Crash-gate had destroyed the team, it had sold a large share of its team to investors, its future looked uncertain. Even with Alonso at the helm, the team was not achieving results.

      Robert Kubica stepped into the car and instantly delivered come the first race. He didn’t score in the points due to the lap one collision that sent him to the back, but until he failed to qualify for Q3 in the final race he had been the only driver other than the Red Bulls to make Q3 in every race.

      Considering he was driving the evolution of a car that Alonso had failed to deliver in, in a team that had lost its direction and had had a top level clearout following its scandal Kubica deserves a great deal of credit. He seems to have galvanised the team around him, given them a purpose, a direction and a future.

      I feel that Kubica’s performance at Renault is superior than Alonso’s in 2009. And I rated Alonso in second place in 2009, it is only because of the high level of performance this year that I only place Kubica in fifth place.

      Other notable mentions:

      Kobayashi (2009 position N/C) is the most exciting driver to enter the sport since Lewis Hamilton. If he stays in the sport, Hamilton will definitely be challenged for his ‘crown’ as the greatest overtaker in the business. While it is impossible to fully gauge the young Japanese driver’s talents due to him being in a lower midfield team, he has pulled off some of the most memorable passes in the sport this year.

      However, Kobayashi is a much greater driver than his publicity suggests. He is unfairly labelled as being inconsistent and over aggressive. Since being in F1, he has only failed to finish a race due to driver error on two occasions. He recognises when he has been beaten in an overtaking manoeuvre and concedes without turning in. Of his finishes, all but three have been in the points and he was the only rookie to beat his experienced team mates (both of them.) He achieved 2.5 times the points of his team mates, whereas Hulkenberg only had half of Barrichello’s points and Petrov had a fifth of Kubica’s.

      Kovalainen (2009 position N/C) was a driver I thought I might be putting in my top 5. He was definitely on my list. He put in the best performance of all of the drivers in the new teams. He also matched Trulli in qualifying, which has always been the strongest part of Trulli’s game. However, the lower division does not really provide a fair enough proving ground to properly assign Kovalainen with a position relative to the drivers in the top teams. However, he is easily the performer of Formula 1′s ‘Division B’.

      Jenson Button (2009 position #1) appears to have had an ‘alright’ season. He finished pretty much where people expected him to against Hamilton, even though the raw statistics do look very bad for him. In fact, in some categories Jenson Button had the third worst performance against his team mate.

      However, one fact that is not well publicised is that Button went through five different race engineers over the season. His original race engineer, with whom he won his two races, was taken ill and McLaren was never able to provide Button with a permanent relationship. Given how critical the race engineer is to a driver’s performance it is little wonder than Button struggled in qualifying in the second half of the year. Korea excepted, Button always put in a very strong Sunday performance and often hauled the car to an outstanding finishing position given where he started.

      Did not make the grade:

      Mark Webber. (2009 position #5) I would have loved Mark to have won the championship. Indeed, following dominating performances at Spain and Monaco, where Vettel had no answer for him, Mark looked set to tell a different narrative to the one people predicted in Red Bull.

      Indeed, we ended up with a very different narrative following the breakdown in relationship between the two drivers – everyone had commented Red Bull had the most stable driver relationship pre season; how wrong they were.

      However, Mark sandwiched his season between two lacklustre performances. He was no where in Bahrain and Abu Dhabi. While there is no doubt that Red Bull made bad calls in Turkey and Silverstone, and there was definitely a preference for Vettel to win amongst some elements of the Red Bull hieracy, Mark’s comments in Brazil seemed more to do with his own performance than a fair assessment of the team. Brazil aside, Mark seemed to fizzle out towards the end of the season. When we left Europe, Mark would have probably have been at the top of the list, but the final five races of the season saw him slip off the radar altogether.

      Feliper Massa (2009 position N/C) may have been psychologically crushed by Alonso by the mid season, but that does not excuse the fact that before he had his motivation taken away in Germany he was about 30 points behind. While we all desperately wanted Massa to win in Germany, it should not be ignored that he only had the lead because stewards failed to punish him for taking an advantage by going off of the circuit in the first corner. At Spa, that would have been punished.

      Hopefully Massa will find his head again next season, but following the impact Alonso has made a Maranello I do not expect Felipe to be challenging for a WDC again in a red car.

    3. Ben says:

      I have noticed a lot of professional pundits have been putting Alonso at the top of their lists, and marking Vettel down on the basis that he made too many mistakes and given his car should have won a lot more races.

      While I fully respect whatever ranking you come up with James (and the rankings all the fans have come up with on this page), I really hope that should you place Alonso ahead of Vettel it is not for the two reasons above.

      Firstly, the mistakes.

      Vettel made mistakes at 5 races this year.

      Turkey: Crashing in to Webber.
      Silverstone: His aggressive start got him an unlucky puncture, but he should have been more careful.
      Hungary: Absent mindedness during the restart.
      Spa: Crashed in to Button overtaking him, receiving a drive through penalty.
      Singapore: Minor error in qualifying cost him pole; strategy error in race following Alonso into the pits.

      Alonso has matched all but one of those mistakes.
      He crashed in Spa (equivalent to Vettel crashing in Turkey)
      He made an aggressive start in Australia that put him to the back (equal to Vettel in Silverstone)
      He made a poor pass of Kubica in Silverstone which resulted in a drive through penalty (which he could have avoided)
      He jumped the start at China, which is similar to Vettel’s absent mindedness at Hungary.

      The only Vettel error that Alonso did not make an equivalent to are his minor errors at Singapore (which considering Webber qualified 5th at Singapore means the qualifying error is marginal, so his only real error there was not taking the initiative to go against his team order to pit)

      However Alonso wrecked his Monaca race by crashing in practice. He was only able to score as highly as he did due to a safety car neutralising his lap 1 pit stop.

      On a mistakes:mistakes ratio, I would say if anything Vettel made less, especially when you factor in things like Alonso’s state of mind in races like Valencia, where he become obsessed with Hamilton’s penalty during the race rather than concentrate on what he could effect, and how he reacted at Petrov after Abu Dhabi.

      With regards to the wins Vettel should have got, well the Red Bull should have won 14 out of the 19 races.

      At China, in the wet, the McLaren was superior in the wet conditions. Ferrari and McLaren were fastest at Canada. The Ferrari was superior at Hockenheim. McLaren was fastest at Spa. Ferrari and McLaren dominated Monza.

      Of the four remaining races, Mark was only genuinely faster at two, Spain and Monaco.

      So Vettel won 5 out of 12 races, which does not look great, until you anaylse why.

      Bahrain: Engine fault. (-13 points Vettel; +7 points Alonso – 20 points net loss)
      Australia: Brake fault. (-25 points Vettel; +2 points Alonso – 27 points net loss)
      Malaysia: WON
      Turkey: Mechanical fault cost him pole, which put him behind Webber, which led to the crash; note, have already penalised him in the assessment for the lack of judgement, however the mechanical fault cost him the victory. (-25 points Vettel, +2 points Alonso – 27 points net loss)
      Europe: WON
      Silverstone: Unlucky puncture put him to the back of the field. Yes, there was a lapse in judgement, for which I have already penalised him for in this assessment, but the puncture was an unluckly consequence. (-19 points Vettel; 0 points Alonso – 19 points net loss)
      Hungary: Safety Car error (-10 points Vettel; +3 points Alonso – 13 points net loss)
      Singapore: Qualifying error/Strategy error (-7 points Vettel; +7 points Alonso – 14 points net loss)
      Japan: WON
      Korea: Engine failed. (-25 points Vettel; +7 points Alonso – 32 points net loss)
      Brazil: WON
      Abu Dhabi: WON

      Of the 7 failed victories, 2 were definitely his fault (Singapore and Hungary) with the puncture in Silverstone an unlucky consequence. However, even taking Silverstone as a his error, he won 75% of his potential race wins, picking up podiums in two of the races where he ‘failed’ to win.

      The net points lost come to a total of 152, with the three ‘fault’ races accounting for 46 of those points (or 27 if you don’t count Silverstone) – so he lost 106 points due to unreliability, putting him 110 points clear in the championship, 44 points on the old system. That would have been the 4th highest margin in the history of the sport, after Schumacher 2002, Schumacher 2001 and Mansell 1992. It would have been 10 points more than Schumacher’s margin in 2004, and it is a fair comparison as there was only 1 less race and the F2004 never failed him.

      Before I get a barrage of responses saying car attrition and luck are part of the sport, the point of all this is not to say “What if” – the point is actually to acknowledge car attrition and luck. While Vettel certainly had a car as superior to the rest of the field as the Ferrari was in 2004 and 2002, the car he had was no where near as reliable. Those cars were bullet proof. The RB6 was not.

      So while it is wrong to say “Vettel won the WDC so that makes him the best” because obviously equipment plays its part, it is equally as amateurish to say “RB6 = supercar, therefore drivers = underperforming” because while the car certainly enabled him to be uncatchable at most of the race circuits, the fragility played the biggest part in stopping Vettel from running away with the championship.

  92. John M says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Hamilton
    4. Kubica
    5. Webber

    Vettel, despite a couple mistakes, gets my nod as best this year. He had reliability issues that cost him a lot of points. Otherwise, he would have been leading handily. He clearly outperformed Webber, in my opinion. 10 poles says a lot, even if it was in the best car.

    Alonso was consistent most of the season, pulling points out when the car was not the best. His late season form was great. If the team hadn’t messed up in Abu Dhabi, he probably would have won the WDC.

    Hamilton outperformed Button and he consistently shows he’s not afraid to pass people. I believe he was able to get a lot more out of the McLaren than most drivers would have been able to. Without the major mistake at Monza and being taken out at Singapore (I still believe it was Webber’s fault), he might have taken the title with a car that wasn’t the best in the field.

    Kubica was able to do a lot with a Renault that was clearly lacking. Give Kubica a Red Bull, McLaren, or a Ferrari and he’d be WDC, in my opinion. I admit I’m biased toward Kubica, however. I’ve always been a fan.

    Webber is a tough choice for 5th, for me. The WDC was his to lose and he did. He had a couple really good drives this year, but not enough. With the best car on the grid and better reliability than Vettel, he probably should have taken the WDC.

    Runners up/honorable mentions:

    Props to Rosberg for a good season, but he didn’t really do enough, in my opinion, to make it into my top 5. Next year, however, I suspect the Mercedes will be good and he may be challenging for the title.

    Button did a good job early in the season, pulling out a couple wins on good strategy calls. By being consistent, he did a good job hanging in the title fight until late in the season.

    1. Damian J says:

      Alonso was not consistent for most of the season, only the second half but because most only remember the last few races, Alonso is getting more credit than he deserves.

      1. John M says:

        Really?

        Alonso’s finishes, in order:

        1, 4, 13, 4, 2, 6, 8, 3, 8, 14, 1, 2, Ret, 1, 1, 3, 1, 7
        Avg position, first 9 races = 4.2
        Avg position, second 9 (minus the Ret) = 3.6

        I didn’t say consistently winning. He did, however, manage good points positions pretty consistently. He didn’t finish second simply by winning races in the second half of the season…he did so by also getting points in the first half.

      2. Damian J says:

        Averaging first and second half results can be misleading. Only 3 podium finishes in the first half of the season of which only one was a win compared to 4 wins in the second half to earn the big points for the WDC otherwise he would would have been a gonner for the 2010 WDC much earlier.

  93. Chris says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Vettel
    3. Alonso
    4. Rosberg
    5. Hamilton

  94. gavin cameron says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber
    4. Kubica
    5. Kobayashi

  95. Jeff in Ohio says:

    My Top 5

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Webber
    Kobayashi
    Hamilton

  96. Chris says:

    1. Fernando Alonso
    2. Sebastian Vettel
    3. Mark Webber
    4. Robert Kubica
    5. Kamui Kobayashi

  97. Tyler says:

    Vettel
    Weber
    Rosberg
    Alonso
    Kobayashi

  98. olivier from belgium says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Button

  99. David Taylor says:

    1. Rosberg
    2. Hamilton
    3. Alonso
    4. Vettel
    5. Kubica

    Rosberg for outperforming by far initial expectations and for consistently putting in good results with an inferior package; For being the best of the rest.

    Hamilton for his determination and fighting spirit. He’s always entertaining to watch. F1 would be much less exciting without him.

    Alonso for his coolness under pressure and outperforming his car.

    Vettel for overcoming more than his fair share of mechanical failures to take the title.

    Kubica for putting in determined drives in an inferior car.

  100. Paul L says:

    Fully agree with James that it’s a very difficult selection this season. My thoughts are as follows.

    1. Kubica – Came of age this season; at times seemed to be singlehandedly dragging a demoralized Renault team back towards the front. Barely put a foot wrong all season and consistently qualified ahead of where he should (Monaco in particular he was stunning).

    2. Vettel – Just pipped by Kubica. Although still needs racecraft when playing catch-up, was simply superb through the end of the season. Faultless performances in Japan, Korea (where he retired from the front though no fault of his own), Brazil and Abu Dhabi just at the crunch time for the championship.

    3. Alonso – Turned his season round and nearly won the championship in the 2nd, possibly even 3rd, best car. Slightly tarnished by Germany but overall significantly outqualified and raced his team-mate.

    4. Webber – Brilliant during the first half of the season, and often seemed to be competing against his team higher management as well as the rest of the competition. Seemed to fade under pressure in the last few races but still a worthy effort.

    5. Rosberg – Yes Schumacher is not the driver of 10 years ago, but even a vintage Schumacher might not have had things all his own way against some of the drivers Rosberg put in this season. Again out-raced and out-qualified his car’s natural performance on a regular basis.

    Will be really interesting to see your top 5 James – despite me finding no room for Hamilton & Button I can easily make a case for them to be up there as well. Even Heikki Kovalainen, despite driving for one of the lesser teams, had a stellar season – regularly outqualifying and outracing the highly-rated Jarno Trulli.

    Paul

  101. Charles says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Hamilton
    4. Button
    5. Kubica

  102. TimeShift says:

    1) Alonso
    2) Vettel
    3) Webber
    4) Hamilton
    5) Button

  103. Christopher Glover says:

    My drivers of the season are as follows;
    1. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Fernando Alonso
    3. Mark Webber
    4. Robert Kubica
    5. Lewis Hamilton

  104. Wojtek says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Rosberg
    3. Alonso
    4. Kobayashi
    5. Hamilton

  105. My Top Five are:

    (1) Vettel
    (2) Alonso
    (3) Hamilton
    (4) Webber
    (5) Kubica

    :)

  106. Mark Vincent says:

    Hi James,
    here goes……..
    Sebastian Vettel
    Fernando Alonso
    Robert Kubica
    Mark Webber
    Kamui Kobayashi

  107. Racehound says:

    Absolutely no doubt the best driver of the season has been Fernando Alonso!!! To bring the 3rd fastest car for most of the season and be favourite to win the championship at the final race has been nothing short of remarkable, and I`m not including his errors! Without only 1 of his errors he would be the youngest Triple World Champion. But no problemo, he will achieve that feat before the end of 2011. The Red Bullcrappers have been far and away the fastest car all year, and should have had the titles sown up maybe 4 or 5 races ago, which is testament to the shoddy job they have done really. For the title to be decided by also-rans getting in the way of the contenders and completely destroying what could have been a fantastic battle for the championship, will leave all real F1 experts with a bitter feeling that this can happen. Some of us dont want to see the real battles at the front being ruined in this way, but what the hell, not everybody watching F1 today are racing purists!! One of the downers of this season has also been the garbage “written” in the British press!! Tom Carey and Jonathan McEvoy I am talking about you 2 numbskulls! How in the Lords name are these idiots called “motor racing correspondents??? Utter garbage all year from both! Now Ferrari must dump the baggage that is Massa, Smedley and Dyer if they are to progress next year to the constructors championship. Fernando can win the Drivers title single handedly, but a stronger teammate will be needed if The Scuderia are to land the Constructors title with it! And Flashio Briatore MUST be at the helm for Ferrari, because Ross Brawn definitely missed the boat with Fernando by jumping ship to Mercedes. I have no doubt after Scummys comeback that Ross is regretting the decision to follow him. Flashio is Italian, and Ferrari need him desperately. #:)

    1. Andy C says:

      Ross had already left Ferrari and was at Honda before he bought the controlling interest (brawn). So he didn’t follow Michael to mercedes….

      If you want flavio at ferrari I can’t see you having much competition….

    2. Damian J says:

      You have forgotten “Crashgate” then!

  108. Victor Leung says:

    Vettel
    Webber
    Alonso
    Button
    Kubica

    Cheers James

  109. Declan says:

    1. Vettel – raw speed and maturity to match
    2. Alonso – settled quickly into the team, and made it his own. Showed why he was ranked #1 driver by his peers.
    3. Webber – he did have a purple patch and was usually only a tenth behind his gifted team mate.
    4. Rosberg – Got on with the job despite the distractions of Schumi’s shadow.
    5. Kubica – He took the Renault to a level it didn’t deserve to be on merit.

    ***********************************************

    In my opinion, Hamilton’s season was greatly diminished by being overtaken twice by Alonso. Those events outshone his otherwise brilliant drives.

    1. Damian J says:

      Declan,

      Hamilton passed Alonso at Canada (as did Button because Alonso was dithering with passing back markers) and not because the McLaren was faster. Hamilton also overtook Alonso at Melbourne.

      1. Johnny86 says:

        When did hamilton overtake alonso in australia? If i remember correctly he was staring at alonso’s gearbox despite being faster for 10-15 laps shouting at his team before webber took him. In canada alonso overtook hamilton back before he dove into the pits.

  110. Ben P says:

    1 Vettel
    2 Alonso
    3 Webber
    4 Kubica
    5 Barrichello

  111. alcaldemeister says:

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Webber
    Button
    Kobayashi

  112. Red5 says:

    Vettel (erratic at times but deserves the title)
    Alonso (fought hard, incredible mid-season turnaround)
    Webber (outsider who topped the championship table and almost got the better of Ferrari)
    Button (did a better job than people thought he would)
    Hamilton (great fighting spirit, could have been the surprise of the season)

    Honourable mention:
    Rosberg (so cool and consistent)
    Kubica (future champion at Ferrari)
    Kobayashi (entertaining)
    Barrichello (still picking up the points)
    Nico (a great pole position in changing conditions)

  113. Josh Taylor says:

    Nico Rosberg – outperformed schumacher and really stepped up his game

  114. Michael says:

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Webber
    Kubica
    Hamilton

  115. Daniel Gomes says:

    1 – Vettel

    You can’t go wrong with this guy. He did have a couple of mishaps during the season out of his sheer young motivation to win, but 10 poles, a lot of points thrown away due to an unreliable car and which would make him wrap up this season much sooner are just enough to make him the driver of the year.

    2 – Alonso

    After a delluding fiorst win in Bahrein, Alonso had a dismal first half of the season, conceding places to Massa instead of being aggressive and going for the win. In the second half however, he showed what he is made of and destroyed Massa and the competition. What a great driver Alonso is. He carried Ferrari on his back to an almost triple championship. Very very close to being the best driver of the year.

    3 – Webber

    Mark fought the adversities, but in the end, his own inconsistence caused his downfall. He had the season of his life and it’s been a long time since we seen a competitive duo as Red Bull’s Vettel x Webber. The Aussie showed he is up to it even against the top drivers of this generation.

    4 – Hamilton

    Lewis could win the title even in the last race, which is a feature in itself considering the package McLaren brought race after race was anything but reliable as far as performance goes. He obliterated Button on qualifying and on race pace, which was expected, but until you do it, you can’t really say anything. A great and mature season for Lewis after a solid 2009.

    5 – Button

    Our 2009 WDC Jense made everything right, won two races and kept Hamilton honest during all season. His low point is, as usual, qualifying. If Button can improve his qualy performances next year, Hamilton can expect a tough competition, much the same away as Vettel from Webber. Anyway, Button done enough to justify his place in the standings and in this list. One of the cleverest drivers on the grid.

  116. Ramiro Aguilar says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kubica
    Congrats. Great site

  117. Alonso4ever says:

    My Top 5 Drivers would be :

    1. Fernando Alonso
    2. Sebastian Vettel
    3. Mark Webber
    4. Robert Kubica
    5. Lewis Hamilton

  118. Oliver Keller says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber
    4. Alonso
    5. Hamilton

  119. Joonas Laanela says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber
    4. Alonso
    5. Barichello

  120. Danny says:

    Don’t know why Kubica is in a lot of peoples top drivers this season, for me the jurys still out, a good driver yes but will he reach the dizzy heights of a becoming a champion I doubt it. I think Rosberg has done well yes and I think people tend to say he has done better than he actually has because he is Schumacher’s team mate. The points difference between him and Schumachers slightly flatters him a bit. I think Schumacher has done well coming from a long way back in terms of not having raced for three years.

  121. Steve says:

    Webber
    Vettel
    Alonso
    Kubica
    Senna

  122. Simo says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Webber
    3. Vettel
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kubica

  123. harp says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Alonso
    3. Hamilton
    4. Rosberg
    5. Vettel

  124. Emile says:

    1.Alonso
    2.Vettel
    3.Webber
    4.Kubica
    5.Rosberg

    That was hard!

  125. kashif says:

    1.Vettel
    2.Alonso
    3.Hamilton
    4.Webber
    5.Kubica

  126. Lee Sampson says:

    My top 5 of the year would have to be:

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Mark Webber
    3. Fernando Alonso
    4. Robert Kubica
    5. Lewis Hamilton

  127. KavB says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Hamilton
    4. Kubica
    5. Webber

  128. sam w says:

    Vettel
    Kubica
    Alonso
    Webber
    Rosberg

  129. Rich_M says:

    Here goes,

    5. Rosberg – many thought he would be dominated by MSC but showed great speed and consistency.
    4. Hamilton – had the edge speed wise over Jenson but let himself down with a couple of avoidable incidents.
    3. Webber – great effort, Monaco and silverstone stand out, but tailed off towards the end of the season.
    2. Alonso – sheer determination in an inferior car
    1. Vettel – 10 poles and the championship make him my number 1 despite Spa and Turkey

  130. Dani T says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber
    4. Kubica
    5. Rosberg

    Thanks for the great blog James!

  131. Rob says:

    1 – Hamilton
    2 – Alonso
    3 – Vettel
    4 – Kubica
    5 – Rosberg

  132. jonas says:

    1. Webber – For fighting to the last race when, only a couple of years ago no one would have imagined he would be in that position.
    2. Alonso – For showing us, once he got used to the Ferarri, the driver he was in 05 and 06 once again.
    3. Vettel – 10 poles. Would have been number 1 if he had wrapped up the championship 5 rounds earlier as he really should have.
    4. Button – He was supposed to have been trounced by Lewis but looked what happened.
    5. Hamilton – Finally acting like a real, regular guy instead of what we had to listen to for the last three years … and for his racing style of course.

  133. Mee says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Rosberg

  134. Pablo Rossi says:

    2010 was probably the most entertaining season I have seen in over 15 years and produced some amazing drives. My top 5 drivers over the course of such an enthralling year are:

    5: Robert Kubica – Some amazing drives and good points scoring finishes. The only very minute slight is that the greats sometimes win a race when they shouldn’t. Nonetheless it would’ve been very hard against three top cars in front of him.

    4: Lewis Hamilton – By far the most adventurous and entertaining racer but knocked out of the top three for crucial decisions made by either NOT choosing his own strategies every now and then or knowing when to sit and hold position for the time being, a la Alonso.
    Still, he produced some amazing drives and racked up a bunch of fastest laps in car that was probably the third fastest on the grid. A host of stunning overtakes also weighed in his favour.

    3: Sebastian Vettel – 2010 Champion. As fast as anyone. Superb when it counts on a one lap or calm head out in front. However despite winning has yet to show me that he can pass through the field succesfully. His overtaking leaves a lot to be desired and I wonder, along with his teammate, would this season have gone to the last race were Alonso or Hamilton in the RB6′s?! Either way a deserved champ but in a car so far ahead of the field at virtually every track its hard to say the best driver of the year won when it was so close.

    2: Mark Webber – Like his teammate, has had the opportunity and machinery to sew this season up many times and failed to do so. However when regarding Webber I feel he was fighting against his team on several occasions in addition to his competitors. Some superb drives from pole as well as through the field despite unneccessarily causing himself trouble. Just pips Vettel for my belief that he hasnt always had the teams full backing as well as slightly more impressive drives.

    1: Fernando Alonso – Wins the best driver of the season award from myself for several reasons. He had a superb if not gifted immediatee start to the season but a win that typified Alonso. If the red bulls ever messed up in their superior machinery, Alonso was there to pick up the pieces. Had a shaky and frustrating few races afterwards being stuck behind his teammate but took the bull by the horns when passing Massa into the pits. This showed his determination and mentality for the races to come. Had a few uncharacteristic errors which occured in my opinion out of the need to take extra risks to keep himself in the hunt with the Red Bulls till the end of the season, which he did. And then the last quarter of the season he was untouchable putting in a string of superb drives that outperformed his machinery. Consistently getting in the points and flustering his opponents. Ironically it was his team that got flustered and ultimately cost him the title by ignoring the challenger in the lead and underestimating the cars around them. Nevertheless Alonso produced the greatest string of superb and consistent drives in crucial moments of the season to be considered My Driver Of The Season.

    Notable mentions go to Kobayashi who carried on his philosophy from the last two races of last season to produce numerous superb overtakes throughout the year in a poor car. Second Rosberg for outperforming the great man Michael Schumacher and producing a consistent display of points scoring finishes if a little underwhelming. Next year I feel will be a better indication of his talent.
    And thirdly a mention to Button who started brightly showcasing his tactical prowess and feel for a race around him. He proved to be consistent in moving forward in races however it became evident as the season went on that he is not as fast or naturally talented as those around him let alone his teammate Hamilton. Nevertheless he surprised me on occasion and wasn’e embarrased in the slightest.

    1. Panya says:

      Agree with you 100% on Alonso.

      I am sure next year he will be much stronger.

  135. Raja Sen says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Webber
    3. Alonso
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kubica

  136. MR says:

    If you take away the cars and rank just by driving performances then I think it should be:
    1. Alonso
    2. Rosberg
    3. Button
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kobayashi

    Neither Red Bull driver should be in the top 5 because with their car advantage they should on won both championships ages ago because Button showed what could be done with a car which has a performance advantage.

  137. PaulL says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Kubica
    4. Hamilton
    5. Webber

  138. Ralf F says:

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Webber
    Kubica
    Rosberg

  139. Joao says:

    1. Hamilton
    2. Alonso
    3. Vettel
    4. Webber
    5. Rosberg

    1. Racehound says:

      Doh!!! There just had to be another 1 in there somewhere. Ask yourself this…Hamilton has been at the same team for 4 seasons and just about managed to win 1 Drivers title. So he must be mostly responsible for the development of their car. When Alonso was at McJalopies, they had in that season without doubt the best car on the grid, and “lost” the Constructors title only because of the
      FerrariGate spying scandal, where they were excluded from the classification as a constructor. So if Hamilton is so good, how come the McJalopy is still so bad after in 2007 it was a Championship winning car?

  140. Baktru says:

    My top 5?

    That’s not so easy…

    1) Vettel
    2) Alonso
    3) Rosberg
    4) Webber
    5) Kubica

    Vettel, after all he won and that IS what counts.
    Alonso got second in the championship with the third best car and could have gotten first if not for the odd strategy decision in the last race.
    Rosberg soundly trashed legend Schum. Nuff said.
    Webber… I really don’t like him but he did have a good season.
    Kubica was ‘best of the rest’. After the three top cars, he was the best and that counts for something.

    I did NOT include Button, who I still believe is not all that good and got lucky having the best car last year, nor Massa who isn’t even a shadow of who he was last year. I should have found a spot for Hamilton, he would be number 6. KobaBashi deserves an honourable mention for being well, KobaBashi. Hulkybulky deserves a mention for that pole in Brasil. Barri, for seeming a genuinely nice guy. And Heikki for being the best of the new teams.

    1. Baktru says:

      Errm correction Kubica was behind Rosberg so he was actually second best of the rest..

      1. Baktru says:

        And from my gf:
        1) Alonso
        2) Alonso
        3) Alonso
        4) Alonso
        5) Alonso

        She doesn’t care that’s not a valid entry ;)

  141. James Hobson says:

    1.Alonso
    2.Vettel
    3.Hamilton
    4.Kubica
    5.Rosberg

    Hate to leave out Webber but he let pressure get to him at last races with the fastest car under him.

  142. Paul says:

    1 Vettel
    2 Alonso
    3 Webber
    4 Kubica
    5 Rosberg

  143. Baktru says:

    Oh and of course…

    Jerome D’Ambrosio for being the only Belgian to drive an F1 car this year.
    As Virgin said:

    Jerome, of course, is quite familiar with the car from his Friday morning sessions, and as usual he impressed us with his calm approach and intelligent feedback as he worked through the test programme.

    I so hope he gets a drive next year, even if it is just with the Virgin.

  144. Gavin says:

    1. VETTEL
    2. WEBBER
    3. KUBICA
    4. ROSBERG
    5. ALONSO

    Alonso would have gone further up my list but for his shocking behaviour after the race shaking his fist at Petrov for not letting him through (even though he was nowhere close enough to overtake him). I was really disappointed by that show of sportsmanship by the Spaniard.

  145. Miha says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Rosberg
    5. Kobayashi

  146. Al (21prods) says:

    Ok, let’s go for it!

    1. Alonso. Some mistakes at the beginning of the season and a weird accident in Monaco. Yet, with a second-class car (compared to Red Bull) he almost clinched the championship.

    2. Vettel. Without his engine’s failure in Korea, he would have won the last four races. Credit to him.

    3. Webber. Personally, I think he deserved the championship a little bit more than the rest of competitors (maybe, just because he is the oldest one). Sadly, he lost the touch at the final stages. Yet, he has been a great performer.

    4. Kubica. He drove brilliantly and got more from his Renault than what I would have imagined. A first-class driver.

    5. Rosberg. With a car that was “only” the fourth one (sometimes the fifth) he got very decent results and well deserved podiums. He should be capable of winning races next year if Mercedes gives him a good car and Ross Brawn does not decide that Michael is his choice from the very beggining.

    PS. I would also include Hamilton (but for his back-to-back mistakes of Monza and Singapour), Kobayashi (hopefully rescued from sushi restaurant thanks to Peter Sauber) and Kovalainen & Alguersuari. I’d like them to promote to better cars…

  147. Carl Michael says:

    1) Kubica
    2) Alonso
    3) Webber
    4) Vettel
    5) Rosberg

    1. Carl Michael says:

      I think the descending order is a bit of a red herring.

      Is it terms of the driver rating or the number we give them in the list

  148. BrusselsF1 says:

    for those of you who voted Jenson Button just because he challenged Lewis (& still came 2nd best), you are tacitly admitting that Lewis is your benchmark of greatness and that Button is really average…

    Here goes my vote:

    1. Lewis Hamilton: might not be loved by British press; they always prefer mr. nice (Tim Henman of this world:)… but wow. average car, still in hut to the end.
    2. Fernando Alonso: Beast!!! 2nd best, almost won it.
    3. Vettel: won it. Well done.
    5. Webber: not bad for a 2nd driver with a quick car. Could have done better tho

    James Allen – please come back to the commentary box on BBC. We missed you!!

    1. Carl Craven says:

      Most of the time JB did follow Lewis across the line, but by how many seconds? 0.8 in the last one and 1.2 in the penultimate race. There many other similar occassions and although I missed the Korean race and know he had a cringer, he never once lost it through his own error. But give him back the points he lost at the hands of others he may well have ended up INFRONT of Lewis.

      He may have been obliterated in qualifying and as a fan it was tough to watch at times, but often reeled Lewis back in on race day because of his tyre management.

      I reiterate, 0.8 seconds as they crossed the line and this was all the while Lewis was killing himself to catch Vettel. Not forgetting the JB had to make up ALOT of places to put himself right back on Lewis’s tail.

  149. Sangeen Khan says:

    1. Alonso for his relentless coldblooded charge.His statement at Silverstone was laughed upon yet he almost pulled it off.
    2. Vettel for winning the WDC although in the fastest car by miles.
    3. Kubica for getting that Renault where it did not deserve to be
    4. Rosberg for thoroughly overshadowing the 7 time champ.
    5. Hamilton for pulling every last bit of performance out of his car.

  150. Lilla My says:

    It’s less difficult to pick five drivers than to put them in an order. I would prefer to put them in no particular order, but if it has to be one by one, then here we go – from the best to the worst (if you can call anybody from this list “the worst”).

    1. Fernando Alonso – I’ve been criticised for my pro-Alonso attitude, yet I really think he was great this year. After first part of the season I was wondering whether he lost “it”, but he definitely proved he didn’t in the second part. To lead the championship, fight till the end for the title and lose it in fact because of a bad strategy was an astonishing achievement in a car that was second and sometimes even third best. He had a bad first part of the season with some errors that seemed so uncharacteristic for him, but then he had a wonderful comeback and his fightback from almost 50 points behind the leader in summer to the first place in October/November was something extraordinary. I also pick him for his immunity to pressure (shown especially in the second part of the season), fighting spirit with no will to give up no matter what and his great ability to answer all the critics on the track – almost every time Alonso was being criticised this year for his driving and errors, he silenced everybody with his performance the following GP (like winning German GP – let’s forget the team orders thing – after finishing 14. in UK, or winning at Monza after crashing in Spa). One may say he inherited some of his wins this year, but you have to be in the right place at the right time to be able to gain from somebody else’s misfortunes. And he was there because of his driving and not because of luck. All in all it was good to see him up there in front after a few years behind.

    2. Lewis Hamilton – Like Alonso – he was fighting till the end with much faster Red Bulls and he was leading the championship for quite a long time in a car that wasn’t best for sure. Although he made some mistakes in the second part of the season as if coming back to his habit of losing his head when it matters, he’s also shown (in the first part of the season) that he has matured a lot as a driver. One of the evidences for that came (IMO) actually at the end of the season – in Brazil when Lewis backed off from his attempt to overtake Nico Hulkenberg – that’s not the kind of Hamilton we’re used to, but it only showed that he was using his head as sometimes you have to have the bigger picture and think not only about this one race (and crash when attacking too fiercely) but about the whole championship. One more personal reason for me, but nevertheless very important: I never liked Hamilton before – I thought he was a great driver but an arrogant man, who, what’s more, didn’t have to fight his way in F1 but was fiven the fastest car straight away from the start of his career. I really thought he would always be so, but this season I changed my mind and I like and respect not only Hamilton-driver but also Hamilton-man; and that’s from an Alonso fan. I guess I’m now (no matter how odd it sounds) Alonso/Hamilton fan and I was happy to see them fighting each other at the front.

    3. Sebastian Vettel – of course – the youngest ever world champion. Why only third place? He was brilliant – that’s for sure and managed to come on top of the standings when it really mattered. But because of his actions in Turkey (crash with Webber) and Spa (with Button), I’m still not absolutely convinced about his racecraft. He’s fast when he’s got nobody in front, but when it comes to overtaking, things can get messy. However, I must point out his great attitude in the second part of the season when he started to keep his head cool and didn’t make mistakes that were so common for him at the beginning of the season. Still, only third spot, because he had the fastest car and, apparently, the whole team backing him and it took him 19 races to come on top (yes – at the most important moment, but considering the circumstances, i.e. the car and all the support) one might think he should have get the title much earlier. That’s why I think Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton did a better job (keeping him at bay for such a long time in slower cars), so they deserve to be on top on my list rather than Sebastian. Still – great season for Vettel.

    4. Robert Kubica – for being almost the best of the rest (I know that title, according to the standings, goes to Nico Rosberg, but Rosberg had, apparently, a better car), for messing up with the front runners from time to time, though he theoretically didn’t belong there. For almost error free season (he made much less mistakes than the front runners, though we still don’t know for sure if it’s due to his ability to drive faultlessly or because he didn’t have to push as hard as the front runners as he wasn’t fighting for championship – maybe, just maybe, he would have made more mistakes if he was put in a faster car and made to fight for wins with even faster cars. That’s only a presumption, but I used it as an explanation – I’m impressed with Kubica’s ability not to make mistakes, but I still can’t be sure whether these are his normal abilities or he if he was able to drive that well because he had no pressure on him, unlike the others). And for his great overtaking moves in Singapore, where one wasn’t supposed to be able to overtake (yes – the fight between Alonso and Vettel untill the chequered flag was great and intense, but it was Kubica that gave us all some entertainment that day).

    5. Mark Webber – because of his result at the end, showing that it’s never too late to fight for the title. He had some great drives, but also some huge mistakes (crashes in Valencia, Korea and Singapore – with Hamilton) and it seemed to me that he lost his speed at the end of the season and even kind of gave up in Abu Dhabi. And it’s because of the mistakes that I put him at only 5th place. However, if his claims about being number two in the team were true, then he did a magnificent job – after all, from the beginning of the season, Vettel was supposed to be Red Bull’s leading force, while it was Mark who took the lead in the championship as the first one from the RB duet. Also – for his great drive in Monaco, his wild celebration in the swimming pool afterwards and his cheeky “not bad for a number two driver”. And for remaining a “nice guy” without any controvercies around him (unlike most of the other front runners).

    As it was supposed to be just 5 then I can’t put some other drivers on the list, but I’ll mention them anyway (in no particular order): Jenson Button (for surprising me at the beginning of the season – I expected him to be far behind Hamilton and he actually put up a fight. He was first of the top 5 to be dropped out of the championship race, but he stayed in that race much longer than I expected), Nico Rosberg (for beating Michael Schumacher fair and square weekend after weekend – something not many were expecting before the season), Kamui Kobayashi (for some entertainment and good overtaking moves – for changing my mind about the Japanese drivers – till this year I thought they could only crash into others and themselves – he proved me wrong, though he had a few mistakes), Nico Hulkenberg (just one outstanding performance in fact, but what a shock that was – definitely worth remembering).

  151. Ayrton says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Kubica
    4. Webber
    5. Hamilton

  152. Tom says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Kubica
    5. Kobayashi

  153. Aaron James says:

    1- Kamui Kobayashi (outperformed the machinery he was given to use)
    2- Robert Kubica (singlehandedly dragged Renault to most of their points)
    3- Sebastian Vettel (a fairly solid season and a well won title)
    4- Heikki Kovalianen (head and shoulders above the B-Class of newcomers)
    5- Mark Webber (desperately unlucky to walk away with 3rd)

  154. Michael Allardyce says:

    It’s not an easy call cos at some point all the drivers made mistakes. But I think we have the worthiest champion in Vettel. RB do seem to favour him over Webber but lets face it, the guy does have immense talent and speed. He had a few ‘humbling’ moments this year but we musn’t forget that he’s only 23! If he learns well from his mistakes and RB continually give him a competitive machine I can see Schuey’s record being seriously threatened. Still fair play to Webber, not only did he got no.2 status, he’s also up against F1′s brightest talent.
    My no.2 will be Webber, 3 Rosberg (for comprehensively showing up a 7x world champ!), 4 Alonso and 5 Hamilton.

  155. Seth Williams says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Webber
    3. Alonso
    4. Hamilton
    5. Button

  156. Nathan Smith says:

    Hi James, I won this last year, I think it’s a lot tougher this year!

    I’m going for…

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Hamilton
    Webber
    Kubica

    1. James Allen says:

      Good luck on getting “back to back titles!”

      1. Nathan Smith says:

        I think I’ve done it!

    2. Christos Pallis says:

      Goo luck, same top 5 as me so “I believe”

    3. James Allen says:

      You did it again! Wow. Well done

  157. Robyn says:

    Vettel
    Webber
    Alonso
    Hamilton
    Kubica

    Also, how fantastic that Mark Webber wrote the foreward to your book! “It’s what we get out of bed for,” indeed. :-)

  158. Hassen says:

    5.Kobayashi
    4.Rosberg
    3.Kubica
    2.Vettel
    1.Alonso

  159. Harry Gilbert says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Vettel
    3. Rosberg
    4. Hamilton
    5. Webber

    It’s really too close to rank. Alonso did an outstanding job in the latter half of the season, but was a bit erratic in the early half of the season. He deserves to be ranked among the best this season, but just won’t quite fit in. Kubica, Vettel, Rosberg, Hamilton, Webber, and Alonso all did a stellar job.

  160. mawchi says:

    1. alonso
    2. vettel
    3. hamilton
    4. webber
    5. kovalainen

  161. Tom says:

    Alonso
    Kubica
    Hamilton
    Vettel
    Webber

    Anyone from the first 3 would have clinched WDC a while ago had he had machinery of the last 2. For that reason I should have maybe put Rosberg somewhere but I like Webbo too much and have too much respect for a WDC title to not honour it on a lists like that ;)

  162. Chris says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Kubica
    4. Kobayashi
    5. Hamilton

    This was very tough. I was rooting for Webber all year long, but I really can’t say he deserved to be in the top 5, considering the way he dropped off in the last few races, especially in Abu Dhabi. Kubica and Kobayashi both enhanced their reputation during the year.

  163. sender says:

    Like someone else here said, I also will not win the book, but I would like to say what I think.

    I can’t understand why someone places Vettel in the first place. Kobayashi did OK, but there were quite a few times where towards the end he changed to soft tires and so had the edge over others on older tires. Of course, it does not diminish the excitement of this driver. Also about Kubica one most say that he did not outperform his car – he just maximised its potential.

    My top five:

    1) Alonso – there is something about him. I think that he more than justified why Kimi was replaced and that really says all about it.

    2) Hamilton – the most exciting driver and a great overtaker. Montoya had the eagerness to overtake, but not always the class and quality. Hamilton has both class and quality.

    3) Webber – I could not decide whether third will be Webber or Rosberg. I chose Webber. It is easy to say that Vettel was faster but I have read several times that the latest updates and changes to the car (since mid season) were more to Vettels liking. So…

    4) Rosberg – I have said it already and will repeat it. He was very consistent and I agree with Ross Brawn – Niko did better than I expected. Everybody is singing praises for Kubica but Rosberg also did great things even when that Mercedes was far from competitive. Give him a good car and he will deliver.

    5) Vettel and Button – here I have two drivers. I still think that Sebastian deserve the title, but I do not remember that he impressed me this season. Hungary was great, until that moment under safety car. Button did really well in his first year at Mclaren. Before the year started a lot of people said that he will loose dramatically to Lewis. It did not happen so good for him. So in fifth place I have both Vettel and Button.

    I also would like to say that Schumacher was not as bad as some say. Kubica was OK but we must wait until he gets a better car and a more competitive teammate. I expected more from Massa.

    About the others – I did not see enough of them because they were not shown enough. So I can’t analyse their performances. Maybe someone from Williams, Force India, Toro Rosso or the new teams also deserve praises, but I simply can’t judge.

  164. sw6569 says:

    I think your order will be, in descending order

    Kubica
    Webber
    Hamilton
    Alonso
    Vettel

  165. Aaron9 says:

    1. Sebastian vettel
    2. Fernando Alonso
    3. Kamui Kobayashi
    4. Lewis Hamilton
    5. Mark Webber

  166. CJH says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Rosberg
    3. Vettel
    4. Kubica
    5. Hamilton

  167. hot dog says:

    1.Kubica
    2.Hamilton
    3.Alnoso
    4.Rosberg
    5.Weber

  168. CuaCua says:

    1-Alonso
    2-Vettel
    3-Webber
    4-Hamilton
    5-Button

  169. Joe Williams says:

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Robert Kubica
    3. Mark Webber
    4. Fernando Alonso
    5. Lewis Hamilton

  170. Baz says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Vettel
    3. Hamilton
    4. Rosberg
    5. Webber

    Thanks for your posts, James. Always a pleasure to read.

  171. Highrevver says:

    1. vettel
    2. rosberg
    3. hamilton
    4. alonso
    5. kubica

  172. type056 says:

    1)Alonso
    2)Vettel
    3)Webber
    4)Button
    5)Kobayashi
    .
    .
    .
    24)Massa

  173. Omar Kamal says:

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Webber
    Rosberg
    Button

  174. Bruce Corey says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Rosberg
    5. Barrichello

  175. C says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Hamilton
    4. Rosberg
    5. Kubica

  176. Jonny Kiehlmann says:

    1. Robert Kubica
    2. Sebastian Vettel
    3. Mark Webber
    4. Lewis Hamilton
    5. Fernando Alonso

  177. JD says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Hamilton
    4. Kubica
    5. Webber

  178. Andy Fov says:

    Alonso
    Vettel
    Kubica
    Hamilton
    Kobayashi

    Alonso because he’d have sealed the title a month age had he been in the RB.
    Vettel for keeping calm under pressure.
    Kubica – so deserving of a top car.
    Hamilton for beating a reigning WDC with equal machinery.
    Kobayashi for entertainment value.

  179. 1. Weber – a better all-round driver and it shows on the track – the most honest of the lot.
    2. Alonso – for the climb back to the top, and he would have been there at the last race with or without those ’7 points.
    3. Button – wasn’t supposed to show as well, according to some; fewest mistakes on the track.
    4. Hamilton – form was slow to materialize.
    5. Vettle – may have won the championship but his ‘mistakes’ cost others way more than they deserved.

  180. Shane says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Kubica
    3. Hamilton
    4. Kobayashi
    5. Rosberg

  181. Dave Aston says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Kubica
    4. Webber
    5. Kobayashi

    James, thanks for your blog this year, I’ve enjoyed it very much. Also, I really miss your television commentary!

  182. Danny says:

    1 Vettel
    2 Webber
    3 Alonso
    4 Rosberg
    5 Kobayashi

  183. Érico says:

    1 – Hamilton
    2 – Vettel
    3 – Alonso
    4 – Button
    5 – Kubica

    Hamilton muscled a slower and relatively unreliable car into championship contention. Two mechanical DNFs in Barcelona and Hungaroring and two defective gearboxes during the same weekend in Japan were a huge mountain to climb. If Monza was outright clumsiness, Singapore was a pure race incident, the kind the bumping likes of Webber seem to cause upon others when fighting for position. Plenty of fantastic qualifying efforts with terrific race results, he is definitely on a learning curve and people must seriously worry what will happen when McLaren deliver him a top notch car again. Hopefully the guys at Woking will have learned from the very hard 2010 experience.

    2 – Vettel had a fantastic season and deserved the title as he was clearly the best and fastest of the Red Bull pilots. Even with all the mechanical problems, he could have made it much easier to himself with measured and controled drives at Istambul, Hungaroring and Spa. He is also on a learning curve, it was costly that he took so long to dominate Webber, but in the end it was just enough.

    3 – For a while, in the second half of the season, Alonso looked like the fast, calculating and unstoppable force he once was from 2005 through 2006. But his first half of the season was remniscent of the driver who had a meltdown when paired with Hamilton and then spent two years in hiding and not even trying aboard a Renault. His plenty of mistakes and Massa’s horrible form masked the true potential of the F10 and what should have been an easy title became bitter defeat. He must be hitting himself over the unecessary penalty at Silverstone, or the crashing in FP3 at Monaco, or jumpng the lights at China, or putting the wheels over the painted line at Melbourne, or crashing out alone at Spa…

    4 – Button was expected to have a year in hell against Hamiltion. Quite the opposite, he pushed Lewis very hard, never made serious mistakes, won two great races and put the underserving MP4-25 in contention until the Interlagos. It actually gave credentials to his 2009 title. Now, if only he can qualify better, he might be the one the field will reckon with in 2011.

    5 – It’s hard to measure Kubica’s year considering his rookie (yet competent) teammate and the fact that people had no expecations whatsoever surrounding Renault. But the guy got deserved and inspiring podiums and made everyone wish he had a top car. In a year in which the whole F1 community was already at awe with 5 legitimate title contender and race winners, that speaks incredible volumes. It’s enough to say he really deserves such a car and Renault should do damn well to be sure he gets one ASAP. He is the guy to rebuild the team and marque in racing after what happened through 2007-2009.

    Honerable mentions go to:
    - Kobayashi. He gave us plenty of momments and smiles depsite some wild runs. Hopefully Sauber and him wil improve for 2011.
    - Barrichello. Williams are him are a perfect match, no BS, just serious hard work racing. Too bad they didn’t meet some 10 years ago. 300+ GPs and counting. Impressive.
    - Webber. Had a nice run. He was fast and able to benefit from RB6 and his rivals’ mistakes for a very long wild. But for a guy who spoke so much, he didn’t have the speed and cutting egde when it was most needed in the end of the season.

  184. Pepe says:

    Alonso
    Niko
    Vettel
    Kobayasi
    Kubica

  185. Grabyrdy says:

    1. Alonso (Massa showed how fast the Ferrari really was and FA found lots lots more)
    2. Vettel (some mistakes but always very very quick)
    3. Webber (fantastic mid-season, no shame in being 2/10ths slower than Vettel in quali)
    4. Rosberg (buried MS – who would have foreseen that a year ago ?)
    5. Kubica (really hard choice here between him and Jenson and Lewis, but stunning on the real driver circuits)

    Thanks for the blog James, which has allowed me to get closer to the action in this fantastic season. Keep up the good work !

  186. Timu says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Kubica
    3. Rosberg
    4. Alonso
    5. Kobayashi

  187. Kaz says:

    1. Alonso.
    2. Button.
    3. Rosberg.
    4. Kobayashi.
    5. Kubica.

    (6. Vettel.
    7. Webber.
    8. Hamilton.)

    Reasoning. Those who stayed with their 2009 team, should have easily out-performed those who changed teams, so big points to those drivers who’ve switched and put in strong performances.

    Alonso trounced Massa and almost got the WDC, which is why he’s at the top.

    The only other WDC contender new to a team was Button who kept Hamilton very honest.

    Rosberg did great to pummel Schumacher more often than not, and this in a new team and one that has had a rather large development hang-over from the previous season.

    Kobayashi got over start of the season wobbles to do some impressive races, and make his team mates look second rate.

    Kubica helped pull Renault back to the front after some pretty bad years for the team.

    I realise that 6, 7, 8 were all WDC contenders and will probably raise eyebrows being that low down, but my reasoning on those is simple. They stayed with their 2009 teams and had pretty good machinery.

    I can’t help but feel that the Red Bull’s performance was so far above the rest of the field, that anyone in the above list and some not in it, would have been able to take the WDC with it, and some probably more definitively. Regardless of Vettel and Webber’s abilities, the truth is that they never had to go anywhere near outperforming the car. Or to put it another way, at races where the RB6 wasn’t the fastest car, I never got the impression that either RB driver was particularly hustling it around.

    Hamilton has been a disappointment this year. Still has great moves, and occasionally shows he’s capable of more mature racing, but generally too hot headed behind the wheel. Also, clearly the 2010 car was built with him solely in mind, due to Button not coming to the team until quite late, and with that kind of an advantage over the rest of the field (how many teams build their car for just one driver?), he should have performed better.

  188. alper206 says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Kubica
    5. Hamilton

  189. David Newsome says:

    1 Alonso
    2 Vettel
    3 Kubica
    4 Hamilton
    5 Rosberg

  190. Curro says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Rosberg
    4. Webber
    5. Kubica

  191. Tom Power says:

    Vettel, Alonso, Hamilton, Webber, Kubica. I nearly put Alonso but he was not error free this season and Vettels form in the last races was superb. Button was too slow in qualifying so misses the cut.

  192. Kyle says:

    1. Kubica (normally I wouldn’t even consider a non-title contender for number 1 spot, but Kubica has been so good this year that I have to make the exception here)
    2. Vettel (WDC and deserved to win by more)
    3. Alonso (great fightback in 2nd half, but 1st half mistakes cost him)
    4. Hamilton (Italy & Singapore cost him dear)
    5. Rosberg (great consistency throughout the year, not on Kubica’s level but at most of the races he delivered the Merc’s potential).

  193. Jorge says:

    Top5 and main characters of 2010:
    1-Sebastian ‘don’t count me out’ Vettel
    2-Fernando ‘I will keep fighting’ Alonso
    3-Mark ‘not bad for second driver’ Webber
    4-Lewis ‘move or die’ Hamilton
    5-Jenson ‘strategy comes first’ Button

    Honorable mentions to:
    6-Nico ‘mission outpace Schumacher’ Rosberg
    7-Robert ‘competitive but quiet’ Kubica
    8-Michael ‘I need the Pirellis’ Schumacher
    9-Rubens ‘senior but reliable’ Barrichello
    10-Kamui ‘I am on hard tires’ Kobayashi
    11-Vitaly ‘pass me if you can’ Petrov

  194. Briggy says:

    5. Hulkenburg
    4. Hamilton
    3. Webber
    2. Alonso
    1. Vettel

  195. Colin says:

    5. N Roseberg
    4. M Webber
    3. F Alonso
    2. R Kubica
    1. S Vettel

  196. R Martin says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kubica

  197. Matt Dolton says:

    Hi James.
    Loving the insight you bring to us mere mortals and will definitely be buying the book if I don’t win- can’t wait to read it! Anyhow, my picks are:

    1. Webber. Has proved himself all round. The story of his route to the (almost) top is truly compelling and that of a true gutsy racer. There should be more from his mould!
    2. Vettel. For all his childish, impetuous faults, he is a great driver and proved in 2008 that he can win races on talent rather than relying on having a good car.
    3. Kobayashi. All out racer. They boy is fast and gives us fans the show we tuned in to see. There has been talk of how to get more overtaking into f1 for years and over his 21 races so far Kamui has shown us the answer- get HIM on your payroll!
    4. Button. Many doubted him before this season and put his success down to the brilliant BGP001 but he has silenced them all, getting performance from what started as a sub-standard car, showingthe value of experiance helping the team develop it but most importantly, taking the fight to Hamilton and holding his own.
    Finally:
    5. Alguersuari. Given his controversial entry into our beloved sport last year, his relative lack of experience and the car he was lumbered with, I think many would have been forgiven for assuming he’d often be joining the new teams at the bottom of the timesheets on a Saturday afternoon. But the boy dun good! I was often shocked to see him puttingin some very promising laps toward the top of the Q2 times. He kept his head down and stayed out of trouble for the good part, learning his trade. I get the sneaky suspicion that he will be applying his learnings next season and perhaps making mire of a name for himself and for that he deserves a place in my top 5!

    There are needless to say many more drivers this tear who gave made sterling efforts to bring their cars home credibly- Kovalainen and Hulkenberg for example, but there simply isn’t room for 10 drivers in a top 5! Well done to all drivers this year for the must exciting season in decades. Every single race seat was well deserved!

  198. Firstly can’t wait to get the book for chrimbo, got it on pre order, so if don’t win I won’t be too downhearted.

    As Mark Webber has said they have all drop the ball at some point this season.

    No.1 Fernando Alonso.
    Great first race, then went backwards very quickly through bad luck. Got to mid season and stated clearly his intentions. Made the best of not the best car. I think if Massa was scoring more points like he normally does this would have been a truer reflection of the team and helped against RBR.

    No.2 Mark Webber.
    Great effort from Mark and constistantly scoring points when others around him were making mistakes. He had a few himself a la valencia but he was very strong this year, the best we have seen him I believe.

    No.3 Jenson Button
    Coming from a team on a budget to a team that is clearly built for Lewis he started as he meant to go on and showed he had the tenacity to get the results that both he and the team needed. Quali has been he problem this year.

    No.4 Robert Kubica
    Has proved if you put a top driver in a reasonable car he can get much more out of it than thought possible. 2nd in Aus, 3rd in monaco and belgium.

    No.5 Michael Schumcher
    I’m torn between him and Heikki. Heikki has taken a big drop down the grid but with an eye on the future so good luck to him and he has done the best out of the new teams.
    Michael as much as his season didn’t start well he has stuck at it and got some decent points in the second half. A very bad move on Rubens didn’t help in one way but on the other hand he has learnt that he can’t get away with things like that now so was quick to put he apology in.

    1. M says:

      People arund Webber made mistakes?

      I always laugh when I hear people talk like Webber made less mistakes than anyone.

      Go through the season, in the race (so not practice sessions):

      - Vettel made 3 unforced mistakes, although many will say Turkey was a forced mistake.
      - Webber made 5 unforced mistakes. Not even counting his 6-7 dismal starts.
      - Alonso made 7 unforced mistakes.
      - Hamilton made 4 unforced mistakes.

      So from the contenders, Vettel made the least mistakes.

      Yet everyone still talks about Vettel like he made 50 and no one talks about Webber’s or Alonso’s. Why is this?

      Even with many mechanical failures, which Webber (or any other contender) didn’t have, costing Vettel over 80 points (!) he still won the championship and in style to boot.

      That says something about his talent.

      1. Ivan says:

        question yourself why Seb had that mechanical failures and Mark didn´t, maybe he´s another Kimi in the Mclaren years, pure speed, but disrespectful with the machine he drives… and to be honest, Redbull should have wrapped the WDC by summer and the rest of the season would have been a walk for the rest and extremely boring for us the fans :P

      2. Lol says:

        The 2 engines blowing up has nothing to do with driving style, they are all rev limited, so you cannot damage them in that way. The same goes for the other parts, there is a safety line. It was all bad luck.

        Some drivers just have this bad luck thing…Kimi being one too. Or Barrichello in Brazil for instance, he always has something bad happen there.

      3. Aaron9 says:

        Well said, M

      4. RPSeymour says:

        I didn’t say MW was mistake immune, I started with his own quote that they have all dropped the ball at some point.

  199. andyb says:

    1 Kubica
    2 Kobayashi*
    3 Vettel
    4 Alonso
    5 Webber

    * I want Kobayashi to have Massa’s seat next year.

    1. M says:

      Alonso disagrees :P

  200. Breck says:

    Hamilton
    Kubica
    Vettel
    Alonso
    Webber

  201. Casey says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Webber
    3. Alonso
    4. Hamilton
    5. Button

  202. Nazdakka says:

    1) Kubica
    2) Rosberg
    3) Vettel
    4) Kobayashi
    5) Hamilton

    Why?

    Kubica was outstanding, constantly outperforming expectations. This season has really put him up there amongst the best drivers in F1 at the moment.

    Rosberg was quiet, but consistently strong, making Schumacher look very ordinary for much of the season. He doesn’t get the press that his talent deserves – people assume that he’s been beating Schumacher because Michael is past it, but I don’t think that’s the whole story. I’d really like to see what he can do in a race-winning car.

    Vettel certainly deserved the title on raw qualifying and race pace, but did little to dispel lingering doubts over his racecraft. Sure, he had his share of mechanical issues, but he didn’t help his own cause with a succession of poor starts from pole and two very clumsy overtaking manoevres in Turkey and Belgium. I can’t be too harsh on a newly-crowned champion, but Seb is not yet the finished product.

    Kobayashi did his reputation a lot of good this year. Poor reliability was a problem at the start of the season, but once Sauber sorted that out, he was consistently sneaking his car higher up the finishing order than it deserved to be. His race at Valencia was a classic.

    Hamilton was another driver who was not favoured by the F1 gods this year. He extracted everything possible from his car through much of the season, but the mechanical failures in Spain and Hungary both denied him significant points. I also think he can count himself unfortunate that his race was ended by relatively minor collision damage in both Italy and Singapore. The two times that he let Alonso past in Brazil and Korea were entirely his fault, however, even though in both cases he probably would have been overtaken at some point.

    Notable omissions:

    Webber – No excuses for Mark. He had by far the fastest car on the grid and no mechanical issues (unlike Seb) and he still couldn’t win the title. Vettel outqualified him by a significant margin, and he also suffered from a tendancy to make a lot of contact with other cars – see Austrailia, Korea, Valencia, Singapore.

    Alonso – Yes, he was excellent at the end of the season… but he was also well below expectations for the rest of it. His car’s reliability was flawless, but like Webber, he wasted it by making a fair few mistakes (see: Monaco and Belgium)

    1. Roger Carballo AKA Architrion says:

      Do you remember Belgium? when Barrichello crashed at him at the start? Do you think that the package was without damage after such a big collision? Really? and after that… do you believe it was all about an Alonso’s error?

      1. Nazdakka says:

        Pretty much, yeah.

        Alonso went slightly wide on the exit of the corner, and then applied the throttle at the exit of the corner with his left-rear wheel on a wet kerb (these are very slippery). The back end of the car lost traction and he got a massive hit of oversteer that pitched him into the wall.

        That’s a driver error, as far as I can see. Sure, his rear end downforce probably wasn’t helped by Barichello smashing into him, but those kerbs are so slippery that you don’t need to have a damaged car in order to get caught out.

    2. Andy C says:

      I was looking for a way to put kamui in there myself, but I didn’t manage it.

      Some of his overtaking moves have been absolutely brilliant this season. He basically appears to brake 15 metres after everyone else. He does not lack guts I’ll say that for him.

      Great to see him developing this season and he’s quite a character off the track!

  203. Chris Goodall says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Kubica
    4. Hamilton
    5. Rosberg

  204. Annabelle Ng says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Hamilton
    4. Webber
    5. Kubica

  205. JimmiC says:

    1st – Alonso
    2nd – Webber
    3rd – Kubica
    4th – Rosberg
    5th – Vettel

  206. Ben m says:

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Rosberg
    Kubica
    Webber

  207. Andy says:

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Fernando Alonso
    3. Robert Kubica
    4. Lewis Hamilton
    5. Nico Rosberg

    Vettel: Was by far the fastest of the lot, and the only reason he didn’t clinch the WDC sooner was the unreliable Renault engine, costing him two victories, both of which went to his toughest enemy, Alonso. Yet, made a “Kimi” and won the championship in an incredible way.

    Alonso: Brilliant on the second half of the season, always there to pick up the points Red Bull threw away. Unusually erratic this season which in the end may have cost him the title. Above the rest because of his magnificent come back.

    Kubica: Outdrove the car in a greater manner than anyone else, and in that sense, could even be considered number one on this list. One of the best racers of the bunch.

    Hamilton: Was fighting until the end even though the car proved to be a disappointment. Some unnecessery mistakes, but also lucky escapes from penalties. Can drive through the field better than maybe anyone else in the present grid.

    Rosberg: Getting better every year, beat Schumi clearly and took podiums whenever possible, in a car that was far from being in top 3. Might really surprise next season if Mercedes manages to build a good car.

  208. Mpatel says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber
    4. Kubica
    5. Rosberg

  209. Kev says:

    1.Alonso
    2.Vettel
    3.Webber
    4.Hamilton
    5.Button

    Alonso is my driver of the season simply for not giving up in the middle of the season after a series of bad races/ill-luck.

    Vettel won the championship but it would have been criminal if any of the RB drivers had not won it in a car that was at times 1.5 seconds faster than the competition.

    Alonso exhibited leadership in a difficult year and will continue to lead the way for Ferrari in years to come.

    Forza Ferrari!!! Vamos Alonso!!!

  210. VV says:

    1. Kubica.
    2. Hamilton.
    3. Webber.
    4. Vettel.
    5. Alonso.

  211. Rob Edgar says:

    1. Webber
    2. Alonso
    3. Rosberg
    4. Kubica
    5. Vettel

  212. COLIN says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Button
    5. Hamilton

  213. DC says:

    1. Hamilton – He did not have the fastest car and he made errors while trying to get the very best out of it. But he won 3 races, 2 on clear pace and merit and 1 by being a persistent thorn in the RBs side until they collided! But what entertainment, amazing passes (mostly!) and great to watch.

    2. Vettel, when he’s in front he stays in front. He did have the best car and there is still a question mark of his passing ability. but he is very quick and I think he deserved the championship, only second to Hamilton because when the chips are down Hamilton shows more skill as he fights his way back.

    3. Alonso. I’m not a fan, but have to admire the flashes of brilliance and utter dominance in a car that was not the best in the field. He is awesome and still arguably the most complete driver in the field. But he’s just so arrogant….that Petrov incident was terrible. And then we have Germany! He doesn’t need races gifted to him…he is too good for that.

    4. Webber. Better than I thought he would be, and he really pushed Vettel, almost to breaking point. I believe that Vettel’s calmness at the end of the season made his championship more credible and that was because of the pressure Webber put him under. He’s a class act.

    5. Kubica. Monaco! What a drive. This guy may well have the legs on all the others! But until he gets that fast car we’ll not know for sure…but he’s right up there!

    I left out Button for one reason. unless it’s a strategy call, he doesn’t take risks. He consistently plodded his way to his points haul only showing flair on rare occasions, and had some serious off days where he was simply nowhere (Korea, Hungary) People keep saying how well he did against Hamilton, but i’m not convinced. Hamilton had twice as many DNFs and still outscored him by 26 points, (that’s more than the gap between Barrichello and Hulkenberg…and he’s just lost his race seat!) i’d say that’s pretty damning myself.

  214. Nando says:

    1/ Rosberg – out-performed Schumacher in a car changed to suit Micheal.
    2/ Kubica – Poor finish to season but great start
    3/ Vettel – Matured as the season went on.
    4/ Kobayashi – For entertainment alone
    5/ Hamilton – Faster than Button, and stayed in title-hunt with the 3rd fastest car

  215. CanadaGP says:

    1. Alonso – almost made WDC expect for fatally flawed pit stop strategy call by team in last race even though he had the 2nd best or 3rd best car all year. Given how poorly Massa performed, I think over-all the Ferrari was just 3rd best.
    2. Vettel-made the most of the Red Bull superiority and was clearly faster than Mark especially at end of year. Would have wrapped up WDC earlier if not for car’s unreliability. Still not one of top 5 in overtaking ability but it will come.
    3. Webber – had a great run despite being obviously treated as No. 2 driver in the team.
    4. Kubica – has made the Renault faster than it deserves and has built a team around him. A future WDC in the right car.
    5. Kobayashi – sensational rookie performance in a terrible car and team. Old-fashioned driver from the 60s and 70s it seems – a pure racer. He’ll improve for sure and hopefully gets a top ride in a couple of years and brings Japan back into the sport big-time.

    Honorable mentions: Hamilton, Button and Rosberg. I think these 8 are a class above the rest.
    The McLaren drivers did not figure in top 5 due to too many mistakes by Hamilton, too conservative an approach by Button and a relatively weak McLaren car this year (although over-all still better than the Ferrari year-round.)

  216. baghetti says:

    driver of the year: Alonso
    #2: Vettel
    #3: Kubica
    #4: Webber
    #5: Rosberg

  217. Nathan Bradley says:

    In descending order:

    1. Vettel – It has to be the world champion for me, even if he did make mistakes, you can’t win the WDC without immense driving ability.

    2.Alonso – Drove brilliantly to take 148 points out of 200 between Germany and Brazil and missed out by a whisker.

    3. Webber – Showed he can still cut it with the youngsters in a difficult team atmosphere

    4. Hamilton – Did really well with the 3rd best car on the grid and in my opinion, only made one (question mark 2) very bad error all year at Monza (question mark over Singapore)

    5. Button – Tough decision between him and Kubica, but I’ve given it to Jenson because he has showed he can match up to Hamilton when before the season many people – including me – thought Hamilton would wipe the floor with him.

    Well, that’s my top 5, and yes I know they were the top 5 in the chamionship, but that’s just the way it worked out for me.

    Nathan

  218. don knowles says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Kubica
    5. Hulkenburg

  219. radohc says:

    1. Kobayashi
    2. Vettel
    3. Kubica
    4. Webber
    5. Alonso

  220. Gary Rowe says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Webber
    3. Hamilton
    4. Button
    5. Vettel

  221. wizzer says:

    1.Vettel
    2.Hamilton
    3.Alonso
    4.Kubica
    5.Button

  222. Lalit says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Webber
    5. Rosberg

    I feel all these performed above expectations.

  223. Mark V says:

    1.Alonso
    2.Vettel
    3.Webber
    4.Rosberg
    5.Kubica

    Alonso because one of the Red Bull guys should have sewn it up several races back with such a dominant car, and Vettel over Webber since Mark threw it away in the last three races. Rosberg doubled a 7 time world champion’s point total and Kubica was often a contender in a car that usually wasn’t. Lewis and Button were solid but not top five.

  224. wizzer says:

    1.Vettel
    2.Hamilton
    3.Alonso
    4.Kubica
    5.Webber

  225. LiamC says:

    1. Webber – No one rated him before the season, especially compared to Vettel, Alonso, Hamilton and Button. Other #2′s did not get so close to their team mates.
    2. Vettel – The boy wonder but given the hype, did he just perform to expectations? A deserving champion.
    3. Alonso – Proved why he is rated so highly.
    4. Rosberg – See comments about Webber. Everyone expected Michael to bury him.
    5. Kobayashi. Soft start to the season, but much better second half. A little inconsistent which is why I rate Rosberg a little higher.

  226. Medor says:

    For raw speed, error rate, ability to overtake: 1. Kubica
    2. Rosberg
    3. Alonso
    4. Webber
    5. Vettel

    Thanks for this web site, James, where the signal/noise ratio is just great !

  227. David hird says:

    Koybashi is the driver of so season. Great racer and fantastic entertainment no matter what he does, overtakes or crashes. Put him in a top car and he will be the first Japanese F1 race winner

    1. Andy C says:

      Martin brundle was commenting on his late braking manoeuvres and wondered whether he gets confused between the brake and the accelerator.

      Kamui seems to brake at the 15 metre line ;-)

      He has been a Breath of fresh air this year. Brilliant.

  228. Gin & Juice says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Kubica
    4. Webber
    5. Hamilton

  229. Karen Clements says:

    my list
    1st Alonso
    2nd Hamilton
    3rd Kubica
    4th kobayashi
    5th Vettel

  230. azac21 says:

    Hope I am not too late :

    1- Fernando
    2- Vettel
    3- Webber
    4- Rosberg
    5- Kubica

  231. glen says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Hamilton
    3. Alonso
    4. Webber
    5. Kubica

    1. Glen says:

      Close but no book

  232. DB says:

    1. Kubica: Took the most from his car.
    2. Vetel: Proved me wrong and showed he could do it this year.
    3. Button: How long can tyres last on his hands?!
    4. Webber: Points or crash. Only really bad weekend was Abu Dhabi.
    5. Barrichello: 18 seasons and pushing. Impressive.

  233. Fox says:

    1 Kubica
    2 Rosberg
    3 Vettel
    4 Alonso
    5 Kobayashi

  234. Nuno says:

    1- Alonso
    2- Vettel
    3- Hamilton
    4- Webber
    5- Rosberg

    ———————————————-
    No doubt, this was a great championship.
    Congratulations to all the F1 people. YOU were just great.

  235. Sean Healy says:

    Its not a terribly informed assessment but here is my gut instinct.
    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber
    4. Rosberg
    5. Kubica

  236. Robert says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Kubica
    4. Hamilton
    5. Rosberg

  237. Mike from Medellin, Colombia says:

    Hamilton
    Vettel
    Alonso
    Kubica
    Webber

  238. Paulinho says:

    1.Vettel
    2.Alonso
    3.Kubica
    4.Hamilton
    5.Rosberg

  239. Manos says:

    1. Hamilton
    2. Vettel
    3. Alonso
    4. Rosberg
    5. Kubica

  240. Andy Bird says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Kubica
    3. Alonso
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kobayashi

  241. Adam Taylor says:

    1, Vettel
    2, Alonso
    3, Webber
    4, Kubica
    5, Rosberg

  242. Jacob says:

    5. Alonso
    4. Barichello
    3. Hamilton
    2. Webber
    1. Kubica

  243. Malcolm46 says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Hamilton
    4. Webber
    5. Kubica

  244. James B says:

    1) Vettel
    2) Alonso
    3) Hamilton
    4) Webber
    5) Rosberg

    Vettel is champion and with 10 pole positions and some failures that others didn’t have he really was the dominant driver.

    Alonso is ahead of Hamilton simply because he beat him. It was tight but I think back to Korea where Lewis made a slight error under pressure.

    Lewis in my view destroyed his teammate in the end. I say this because Button is good but in the end Button just couldn’t live with his pace and his ability to get results out of a car that shouldn’t be there.

    Webber had an amazing season. He gave his teammate a great run and in the end he just couldn’t produce the goods at the end. I personnally think he lost it in his head and think he sufferes from Coulthard syndrome. Stop whining and just drive because your actually darn good mate!

    Rosberg took on Schumi and beat him – simple. He also dragged that Mercedes to some good podium results.

    Others who I miss out are:

    Kubica – quick but sometimes just doesn’t seem to produce.

    Button – Hamilton is in his head and adopted some silly strategies in Japan and Korea probably did better than I expected though and his drive in Australia was brilliant.

    Barrichello – Hulkenberg got to close to him late on although he did have a solid season

    Sorry to bore you James and everyone else but this was great fun!!

  245. ethone says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Kubica
    4. Rosberg
    5. Kobayashi

  246. CJ says:

    1. Alonso. tough call over Vettel but he almost won the championship in a car which mid season was a nail 2. Vettel. In the best car and made some horrendous errors but give him an open track and he’s quickest out there 3. Webber. Just fell short in the last few races but had a very tough emotional season, and what a back flip! 4. Hamilton Great competitor, gave 110% all season long, made mistakes and flashes of petulance 5. Rosberg just gets it from Kubica, totally unfazed by Shumi, didn’t make many mistakes, quietely got on with it and made good progress as a driver in a disapointing Mercedes…

  247. Miked says:

    1,,Alonso
    2..Vettel
    3..Hamilton
    4..Webber
    5..Kubica

    Alonso for me, for getting a car performing and scoring higher than its merit,

  248. Ed says:

    1. Webber
    2. Vettel
    3.Rosberg
    4. Alonso
    5. Button

  249. Rafael L says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Button

  250. nige says:

    based on entertainment value, overtakes, skill, hard headiness and for beating 7 times world champion.

    1 alonso
    2 lewis
    3 vettel
    4 webber
    5 rosberg

  251. David Hamilton says:

    Hmmm….

    1 Nico Rosberg. Humiliated the 7x WDC.
    2 Vettel. Not yet the complete article (needs to learn to overtake) but blinding speed at times, while preserving tyres well.
    3 Kobayashi. Great overtakes, and showed well against Heidfeld who has rarely been bettered by some illustrious teammates.
    4 Alonso. Single handedly carried Ferrari. Shame about Hockenheim – unnecessary and embarrassing.
    5 Webber. Raised his game impressively, and could have had championship but for white line in Korea.

    Love the way Hamilton approaches F1 – this year was not his year. Button held his own better than expected, and could still have had a chance, but for Vettel’s ram-raid at Spa.

    Great unknown of the season: Buemi and Alguersuari. Two brilliant drivers driving their socks off at Toro Rosso, or as bad as each other?

  252. Phil B says:

    1 Webber
    2 Alonso
    3 Vettel
    4 Hamilton
    5 Button

  253. Raquel says:

    1) Vettel
    2) Alonso
    3) Webber
    4) Hamilton
    5) Kubica

  254. rvd says:

    James, would it be too much work to publish a tally of who got how many 1s, 2s, 3s, 4s, and 5s?

    thanks for the good work you do.

  255. Christian says:

    1.Vettel
    2.Webber
    3.Kubica
    4.Alonso
    5.Hamilton

  256. P King says:

    1. Hamilton
    2. Kobayashi
    3. Kubica
    4. Webber
    5. Rosberg

    It has to be the above because Vettel does not deserve to be ranked as a top overall driver as yet. Sure he is fast if he has a clear track and there is no one in front to overtake. That can be said of all drivers. Vettel has so far shown that he can only perform from the front, having used his young sharp brain to get pole position on Saturday. He has yet to learn how to overtake and pass people safely. Vettel is slow if he gets trapped like Alonso did in Abu Dhabi.
    Hamilton is top as a driver but he has one flaw – he is not good as a tactician. he always goes for a win regardless of the damage it does to his championship chances. He has not been taught the story of the hare and the tortoise.

  257. Philip Shaw says:

    In terms of getting the maximum from the car:

    Kubica
    Rosberg
    Alonso
    Hamilton
    Kobayashi

  258. Ben O'Driscoll says:

    1st Hamilton
    2nd. Kubica
    3rd. Alonso
    4th. Vettel
    5th. Webber

  259. Maxime Labelle says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Webber
    3. Rosberg
    4. Kobayashi
    5. Kubica

  260. Tim says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Webber
    3. Vettel
    4. Alonso
    5. Hamilton

  261. Ken says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Webber
    3. Vettel
    4. Kubica
    5. Hamilton

  262. Malc says:

    1.Alonso
    2.Webber
    3.Vettel
    4.Kubica
    5.Rosberg

    Definitely a great season, very tough getting it down to 5. Really wanted to include Kamui, but Nico just edged him, and not sure I should have left Lewis and Jenson out.

  263. Adam Fry says:

    I dont think Ill win anything with my top 5 but here they are

    1.Hamilton – Great wins in far from best car. Most exciting driver for me. Did well to take it to final. Mistakes were only at times where he had to go for it.

    2.Vettel – WDC and would have been wrapped up earlier without reliability issues but not proved himself in traffic and made unnecessary mistakes.

    3.Alonso – Should have won WDC in a car that was never a match for redbull. However early season was full of errors.

    4.Webber – Fell slightly short at the end but many thought he would never get that close.

    5.Rosberg – Close with Kubica. Out of the 2 they both outperformed their cars but I feel Rosberg converted more in races.

    Kobi for rookie of 2010 of course!

  264. Andrew Goffin says:

    mmmm… difficult one

    1. Webber
    2. Hamilton
    3. Button
    4. Vettel
    5. Kobayashi

    Bring on 2011 season ….

  265. Jamie Thomas says:

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Kubica
    Webber
    Hamilton

  266. El Shish says:

    Anybody who won a race when either Vettel or Webber finished and had unaffected races needs to be on that list – that car was literally that much better than the field this year. So Alonso, Hamilton and Button all have to be on that list.

  267. Martin says:

    1.Vettel
    2.Alonso
    3.Hamilton
    4.Webber
    5.Button

  268. Darren says:

    My top 5, in order:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Rosberg
    4. Webber
    5. Kubica

  269. mvi says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kubica

  270. JC Agoglia says:

    Top 5:
    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Hamilton
    4. Rosberg
    5. Kobayashi

    Weber and Kubica should be up there too, but couldn’t take out any of the drivers above.

    This hab

  271. Philip W says:

    I’m going to be alittle bit outlandish with my top 5 drivers of the season.

    5. Vettel – he might be world champion but made very hard work of it seeing that he was in the fastest car all year. still hasnt done enough to prove he has race craft either… i cant see him coming through a pack of cars with out one of them having a punctured radiator.

    4. Kovalainen – Heikki has been the star of the ‘B-Class’ in 2010. difficult season in what has proved to be in a very slow car but put trulli to shame with his performances.

    3. Rosberg – mainly for the reasons evryone else has included above. has done a very good job in a 4th fastest car and didnt crack under the pressure and mind games of Schumacher.

    2. Button – everyone expected him to be blown away by Hamilton but took 2 very good victories and proved that last year was no fluke.

    1. My driver of the year has to be Kubica – in a not very competitive or quick car regularly put his Renault in positions that it had no right to be in. I am waiting patiently till he gets given a championship winning car to see what he really can do.

  272. Skanda says:

    For me the order would be

    1. Vettel – won the championship despite the terrible luck he had. He was found lacking in race craft with a couple of poor overtaking moves this season but also demonstrated tremendous maturity in nursing a bad car (Australia). Red bull ensured that he was put in front for most of the season and pull away from the chasing pack.

    2. Alonso – what started as a disastrous season for Ferrari and Alonso was turned into a golden run in the late season. Won more races than anyone else even with having a car down on pace for most of the season.

    3. Hamilton – was mercurial in the first half and slowly drifted away towards the end (more to do with mclaren’s inability to improve the car). Put in some stunning drives early on and was the only the reason I could watch the entire race. The Montreal pole to me was one of the highlights of the season.

    4. Webber – if not for the thrashing he got from Vettel in the last 5 races he would have well been the no1 driver and would have won the championship in style. Showed tremendous guts and determination despite his limited talent. Fantastic in silverstone and Monaco.

    5. Rosberg – I hated all season watching him beat schumacher. Outperformed the car with a strong point finishes.

    Unlucky to miss out on this list – Kubica (incredible front seat in Monaco) and Kobayashi.

    Waiting to see Schumi back at the front next season.

  273. Koby fan says:

    I think these 5 drivers basically over delivered with the car they had at various stages and had more memorable defining moments during the season:

    1. Vettel (other than highly suspect overtaking errors, clocked 10 poles and would have won more GPs if not due to mech failure, had a awesome backend to the season and delivered when it mattered, more than likely to be a multiple WDC)

    2. Alonso (through sheer power of his will & personality almost dragged the slower Ferrari to the WDC, completely obliterated his teammate – on track and mentally, tarnished though by some slightly raw behaviour – e.g. post-race gesticulating at Petrov)

    3. Webber (led the table for most part of the year, also showed great mental strength to overcome internal team issues mid season that on his firey days he could overdeliver – Monaco, British GP; his lower placed results were actually harder fought and better e.g. putting in continual quali laps and actually passing traffic)

    These 3 were clear choices this year, 4 & 5 were a little harder to choose, so here goes:

    4. Kubica (WDC points wise was the best bang for buck, his race contract bonus payments must be huge, rarely made any errors, his results flattered the Renault and quali gaps to his teammate were huge)

    5. Kobayashi (rocky start to the season but WDC points wise was 2nd best bang for buck, was the standout overtaking entertainer on the track in most races in a midfield car – Hungary, Valencia, Japan; outshone veteran teammates – Japanese gilles villenueve in the making)

    Missing the cut- Rosberg had a good season outperforming Schumi but their was no real character defining or memorable performances. Hamilton had some good races (Spa) and overtakes but made some badly timed errors and didn’t really over deliver in the F-Duct Mclaren. Even with 2 GP wins, Button underperformed in several races given the car at his disposal. If Glock had managed to score some minor points he would have also been a contender here.

  274. HR says:

    1 Vettel.Sure there were mistakes, but his end of season form when the pressure was really on was super impressive. Pole, led in first corner, controlled the race, job done. Worthy champion

    2.Hamilton. Extracted more than his McLaren wanted to give, hence some of his small mistakes, Monza aside. Imagine the season McLaren would have had if Button had been their lead driver.

    3.Alonso.Terrific late season form but Ferrari’s brain fade in Abu Dhabi saw him come up short. But what was with all those unforced errors, too many for a driver of his stature and experience surely.

    4.Webber.Great mid-season form and obviously the paddock’s favourite for the title. But when it really mattered, Japan, Korea, Brazil and especially Abu Dhabi can up short. Champions don’t choke.

    5.Roseburg.Imagine the shock when he found out Michael was to be his teammate. Dealt with all the extra pressure that decision engendered and returned the seven times champion’s serves with interest. Established himself as a true front rank driver.

  275. Jay says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Webber
    3. Kubica
    4. Button
    5. Kobayashi

  276. JC Agoglia says:

    My response went out too soon. I truly need to add Barrichelo as honorable mention.

  277. GTA says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Kubica
    3. Hamilton
    4. Webber
    5. Alonso

  278. 1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Hamilton
    4. Webber
    5. Button

  279. ef jeden says:

    Hello James

    First of all I’d like to say big thank you for all your efforts to keep us readers up-to-date with all the news and your insights throughout the season. For me, the “armchair driver”, you’ve been my manager, a race engineer and a fellow “armchair driver”. I am quite sure of my seat (sorry, armchair) the next season. Cheers :)

    As far as your question goes, MY top five drivers are:

    1.Robert Kubica – he made that yellow & black drone of a car look twice as sharp and quick. He proved his exceptional talent throughout the season, especially on those tracks, where car potential can be overwhelmed by driver skills (Monaco, Spa and again in Suzuka at least as long as all four wheels were available!) being beaten only by Red Bull drivers on these occasions. He was able to stay focused (I couldn’t) despite all the dry humor behind sticking the Lada labels onto F1 car. (I’m pretty sure all the Lada owners in Russia will order a repaint of their cars now…) and prove all of ye, dear readers, mentioning Petrov as their top driver, being biased by hatred towards Alonso or blinded by love for your Lada cars ;)

    2.Mark Webber – for his Icarus-like inspired journey with given Red Bull wings, which did not survive the heat of the final battle. Daedalus clearly wasn’t his father… Pure poetry. Thanks Mark. Hope you’ll learn from your mistakes.

    3.Seb Vettel – for listening to what Daedalus said and making the most of it really.

    4.Fernando Alonso – too many erratic mistakes at the beginning of the season and his sudden improvement with the German GP, which proves to me that he needs to be given the number one driver status in order to get his job done.

    5.Lewis Hamilton – for being Lewis Hamilton.

  280. Pierre says:

    The challenge is quiet difficult this year, specially for the 5th place between drivers like Rosberg (outpaced Schmumi), Kobayashi (the show in a second zone car), Barichello (experience and consistency) or even Kubica…
    I’ll go for Kobayashi, so:

    1- Vettel
    2- Alonso
    3- Webber
    4- Hamilton
    5- Kobayashi

  281. Paulo Miranda says:

    1 – Seb Vettel
    2 – Fernando Alonso
    3 – Lewis Hamilton
    4 – Robert Kubica
    5 – Mark Webber

  282. KerbRider says:

    1= VET – lost 3 races due to mechanical failure. and still won the WC
    2= WEB – All 4 of his wins were from great drives, and did lose one win due to a highly publicised collision.
    3=ALO – Fought back from a miserable season and a long way down to nearly winning the title
    4= KUB – Was just plain brilliant in a car that was not.
    5= ROS – Had a few off weekends but all in all thrashed his highly regarded team mate, and collected a few podiums when the chance arose.

  283. jose arellano says:

    1.-alonso
    2.-vettel
    3.-webber
    4.-hamilton
    5.-button

  284. Matthwd says:

    1. Webber
    2. Alonso
    3. Vettel
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kubica

    James, thanks for the great insight into F1 this year and thanks for the Pre-Race interviews on One-HD for Australian TV.
    Ive ordered your book online and looking forward to it.

  285. Richard Craig says:

    Hmm, a very tough one this, but here is my best shot…

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Fernando Alonso
    3. Mark Webber
    4. Lewis Hamilton
    5. Jenson Button

    I realise this is championship order (that is just a coincidence).

    Vettel drove a brilliant end to the season and thoroughly deserved his place in history as youngest World Champion.
    Alonso as many others have said before me, incredible effort with a car which hovered between second and third best on the grid.
    Webber almost got the title he so richly deserved for his long service (and no shortage of horrifically bad luck) but in my view, incessant doubts over team’s support finally broke him psychologically. Surprised he is planning to return for RBR in 2011 (certainly peddling this line with the media for the time being).
    Hamilton would’ve been a legitimate contender for the title in what – on balance – was far from the clear second best car had he enjoyed a little more of lady luck’s grace and favour. DNFs in Barcelona (beyond his control) and in Singapore and Italy (both definitely WITHIN his control) cost him a huge bundle of points which would’ve transformed the table.
    Button had a very respectable debut season for McLaren and made the fewest mistakes of all the five title contenders. Achilles heel of qualifying desperately needs attention, although he recognises this and has begun working to address this deficiency (which seemed to already be working given his performance in Abu Dhabi). Proved everyone wrong who said he would be obliterated by Lewis (although perhaps the gap between them is somewhat flattered by Lewis’s DNFs). Will definitely be a title contender in 2011 if McLaren can deliver an MP4-26 worthy of its champion driver lineup (and almost certainly will help secure the Constructors’ title in such a scenario).

    Would have loved to give recognition to Kubica, Rosberg and Kobayashi but I honestly felt that their place in the top 5 at the expense of those I have chosen would ring false, so I had to stick to my guns.

    Thanks for another great year of F1 blogs, James – looking forward to reading the book, visiting your site (and perhaps) one day seeing you back on television (in the UK I mean) where you belong.

  286. madjon88 says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Webber
    3. Alonso
    4. Kubica
    5. Hamilton

  287. brum55 says:

    5) Webber – Was untouchable at the mid point of the season, brilliant in Spain and Monaco and produced a stunnning drive after an audacious pit-stop strategy in Hungary. Sadly tailed off at the end.

    4) Rosberg – Made Schumacher’s job of impressing in his 1st season back very difficult as Rosberg was relentlessly quick and consistent. Whatever happens in his career he will always be the first team-mate Schumi has had who he hasn’t been able to match.

    3) Hamilton – Brilliant at certain points of the season especially his early drives at Aus, China and Malayasia where he produced stunning overtake after stunning overtake. Another superb drive in Belgium and it looked as he’d taken Alonso’s mantle of #1 driver he then let himself down badly with a string of errors, Monza and Singapore and made furthur mistakes in Japan (albeit in practise) and Korea, letting Rosberg and Alonso through easily in conditions he’s excelled in. Also gifted Alonso in Brazil and struggled against Hulkenburg. If he could keep his form up until Belgium throughout the year he’d be unbeatable.

    2) Vettel – Vettel’s year really came of age in the final sprint of the season. Previously he’d been frustrated with his bad reliability and his team-mates form, Vettel made a couple of huge high profile errors costing Webber, Button and of course himself. However his form in qualifying was just outstanding and if he were a bit luckier, this season would have been over a few months ago. 63 pts he lost from problems with his car in Bahrain, Australia and Korea. How different would this season look if instead of winning by 4 he won by 67? Still has the capacity to improve significantly which is ominous for the rest.
    1)Alonso – After Bahrain, Alonso made error after error and gave himself am almighty task to win the WDC. The fact that a bad strategy call eventually cost him showed what a 2nd half of the season he had. With a Ferrari often streets behind the Red-Bulls and at times behind the McLaren, Alonso drove the wheels of the Ferrari, characterised by his win in Singapore and his last ditch qualifying lap in Abu Dhabi which unfortunately counted for nothing. He also destroyed a team-mate many expected to give him a run for his money. Other highlights included lapping 4 seconds a lap faster than anyone else at the end of the Korean GP despite pushing the car to the limit in the previous laps, stalking Button lap after lap in Monza and delivering a famous victory for the Tifosi and his drives through the field at the start of the season were only bettered by Hamilton. But it was his determination after two miserable races in Valencia and Silverstone where he was all but of the WDC which characterised his willpower and saw his best form since the 1st half of 2006.

  288. auski says:

    Webber
    Alonso
    Kubica
    Vettel
    Hamilton

  289. BMG says:

    1.Webber, Caught the team of guard and had to fight them for the rest of the season.
    2.Alonso, had a poor car early in the season but came home like a champion would.
    3.Hamilton,took lots of risks, some paid off and some did not.
    4.Vettel, because he is world champion thanks to team strategy.
    5.Rosburg, like webber he had to fight the team to get a far go.

  290. Blazo says:

    1. Kubica 2. Hamilton 3. Rosberg 4. Webber 5. Alonso

  291. Bru72 says:

    1.Alonso
    2.Vettel
    3.Webber
    4.Kubica
    5.Button

    Alonso as he fought back very strongly, and never had the fastest (Red Bull) car.
    Vettel impressed with Schumi like form on certain racedays…..but mistakes on other weekends littering his season.
    Kubica…..very well done in a Renault.
    Webber and Button, smooth but too patchy. Showed good resilience, and kind to their tyres.

  292. N says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Webber
    3. Alonso
    4. Vettel
    5. Hamilton

  293. Jake says:

    1. Hamilton – outdrove car, great overtaking, least mistakes of all the 4 contenders.

    2. Alonso – great second half, outdrove car(to a lesser extent than lewis) but too many mistakes early on.

    3. Vettel – Good pace but in a car that was so good he should have wrapped it up much earlier. Too many mistakes throughout the year and a lack of overtaking ability.

    4. Kubica – Very consistent but dropped off a little to the end. Didn’t have the pressure of the title contenders so can’t rate him higher.

    5. Button – 2 great wins but lacked the pace of Lewis throughout. Did well to stay in the battle for as long as he did with very few mistakes.

  294. Mitch says:

    5. Kobayashi
    4. Webber
    3. Alonso
    2. Hamilton
    1. Vettel

  295. Chris says:

    1. Alonso/Vettel – Can’t seperate them, Alonso totally dominated Massa and Vettel won the championship despite alot of reliability issues, he wasn’t as error prone as people like to make out.
    2. Hamilton – Fantastic season, really not much below Alonso and Vettel, I just wasn’t quite as impressed by him but can’t pin point exactly why.
    3. Rosberg – Drove fantastically all season long. Can’t think of any major errors.
    4. Kubica – Drove fantastically in Monaco, Spa and Suzuka but in some races he seemed a little lackluster. Dominated Petrov but do we know how good or bad he really is?
    5. Webber – He didn’t impress me as much as he impressed some. Out of the five title contenders I can’t think of any reliability issues during a race and although the team like to say Alonso inherited two wins from Vettel (Bahrain and Korea), why wasn’t Webber there to pick up the pieces when Vettel had reliability issues? He did have some great races though.

    1. Karthick says:

      Spot on, except that i think Rosberg looks brilliant cos schumi isn’t the same the driver he used to be.

  296. 1: Kubica (out performed the car all year)
    2: hamilton (crashed only because he was pushing and the car was not as quick as the front runners)
    3:Alonso (bar the mistakes drove like a 2 time wdc under pressure to deliver)
    4:Vettel
    5:Webber (the car suited him better while vettel adapted then was out paced)

  297. Ivan says:

    1. Alonso.

    Never gave up and could do the best with a car that wasn´t by far the best. He pushed the whole Ferrari team and make them believe.

    2. Rosberg.

    Would like to see him driving a competitive car. He has beaten the Kaiser and has done great races with the material he got.

    3. Kubica.

    Another crack that doesn´t fit the likes of Bernie jsut because Poland does not interest.
    He will be a terrorific competitor in a good car.

    4. Lewis.

    not fan of him really, but he makes the races funny and exciting. The Mclaren didn´t work, it´s a pity.

    5.Button.

    I believe he could have done much better the last races, don´t know why he got that poor performance from the car, but he showed us what he´s made of this year.

    I don´t put any RBR drivers. I think with that RB6 anyone could have done it, and to be honest, i think Alonso, Lewis or even Kubica could have been WDC by the summer break. Vettel is childish and do have the total support from the team, Helmut looked like his oldman on Sunday. I´m a bit down for Mark, I think he deserved the title more than Seb, something happened to him, and I´m not talking about the pressure on chasing the title.

  298. Jan says:

    Please compare the drivers, not the cars!

    My top five:

    1. Kubica
    2. Rosberg
    3. Hamilton
    5. Alonso
    4. Algersuari

  299. Robokarp says:

    5. Lewis Hamilton
    4. Nico Rosberg
    3. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Fernando Alonso
    1. Robert Kubica

  300. S.J.M says:

    1) Alonso
    2) Hamilton
    3) Vettel
    4) Kubica
    5) Webber

    Alonso & Hamilton take the top 2 spots for i think they were the best racers this year and fought to the very end in lesser machinery, although ending empty handed. Alonso pips it because his form pre- Abu Dabi was just unbelievable.

  301. Jordan says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Rosberg
    3. Alonso
    4. Vettel
    5. Barrichello

  302. Antz says:

    Hi James, your posts this year have been fantastic providing all f1 fans with an insight into the inner workings of f1 that no one else can match. Thank you and I look forward to your posts next season!

    Top 5:
    1. Alonso – the Ferrari was not as fast as it’s rivals and what Alonso managed to get of the car was far more than his rivals in superior machines
    2. Vettel – he had a turbulent mid season but the end of the season we saw him mature and get the job done, race after race
    3. Kubica – solid season showing a great balance between aggression and consistency. Very intelligent season and he deserves high praise
    4. Rosberg – consistent all the way. Rosberg always looked like he should have fallen back through the field during stops but instead he consistently got out and up to speed quicker than anyone else and gained positions. Perhaps the unsung hero of the year.
    5. Hulkenberg – great rookie drive, took time to adjust but since Silverstone out performed his team mate with 18 seasons experience. A cool head with a promising future.

  303. Alex says:

    Trying to put aside the f1 community’s case of Alzheimer’s my list is below.

    1. Webber- Led the most laps of anyone until Korea where the pressure got to him. Probably because he felt injustice, whether deserved or not, that he was the only front runner not being supported as a title hope. Should have focused on the racing like his young team mate, but is easier said than done when you’re having a war of words with your team. Nonetheless, despite this perceived oppression, Webber outscored the new world champion by 41 points in Europe (when Vettel had no mechanical issues), and showed in places like Monza he could actually overtake (did Alonso or Vettel overtake anyone successfully?). If his height disadvantage cost him a mere tenth, Korea, Suzuka and Brazil might have been a different story. Unfortunately F1 is turning into a sport of groomed jockeys. It would have been nice to see a tall, lanky Aussie get the championship. Not with out his share of bad luck either- he lost out on strategy in China and Australia; was the driver who lost out most from Red bulls bad starts (a problem fixed when Vettel was on a hot run of form)- Webber has been the driver of the year in my eyes.
    2.Alonso- His fight back was impressive and should have won the world championship on the back of his driving. Did have the luxury of his teams support. While it seemed technically fair between the two Ferrari drivers, the lack of moral support on the side of Massa show what it can do to a person. Moral support is so underestimated, and is again why I think Webber was more impressive than Alonso (i.e. if Vettel would have driven like Massa, Webber would have won the WDC even if Red Bull lost the constructors)
    3. Vettel- Final four races were awesome. Was unlucky to have all those engine blow ups. However, did not perform as well in Europe and made some horrible mistakes. Sure he can set a great qualy time and drive down the road fast, but what if he’s in traffic? To me he’s not the complete package, and maybe never will be if he doesn’t take responsibility for his mistakes. Nonetheless a deserving world champ.
    4.Hamilton- I never really appreciated Hamilton before but he is great value. His car was the third fastest and he was still in it until the final race- and he did it admirable style. His crashes in Monza and Singapore might have been avoidable, but at least he went for it. Still, if he wants to be a multiple world champ (and he probably should have been by now) he might want to take a more measured approach in the final few races.
    5.Kubica- Amazingly consistent in a car off the pace. Monaco was amazing, and was, outside the Red Bulls, the most consistent driver in qualy. However, I’d like to see him against a proven race winner. I think he’s the real deal, but you can’t be sure until you see Alonso, Hamilton etc in the same machinery.

    Honorable mentions: Rosberg- still the most underrated driver in the paddock. Button- Performed well above my expectations, though sadly trailed off towards the end of the championship.

  304. Will Clark says:

    Hey James, great job this season. We all really appreciate your hard work, its nice to have such insight.

    1 Alonso
    2 Kubica
    3 Vettel
    4 Hamilton
    5 Webber

  305. TOM says:

    #1 KUBICA
    #2 ROSBERG
    #3 VETTEL
    #4 WEBBER
    #5 BUTTON

  306. SHIPARCH says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kobayashi

  307. Ibrahim says:

    1-Alonso
    2-Hamilton
    3-Kubica
    4-Vettel
    5-Webber

    On the basis that its easiest to shine in the best car and the fact that the RBRs should have had both titles sorted long before they did.

  308. Azli says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Webber
    3. Alonso
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kubica

    Shame we can only name five though :)

  309. Kurt S. says:

    1. Vettel – Definitely too mistake-prone, but he pulled it together and delivered under pressure when it counted. And without the mechanical problems/failures he suffered throughout the season, he would have won the championship easily.

    2. Alonso – Also came on strong when it counted (except Abu Dhabi), driving like a guy who knows how to win championships…a man among boys at times. Done with a team that really didn’t deliver championship-caliber cars, race strategy, etc.

    3. Kubica – Get this guy a front-running car! Hard to tell how much he flattered the Renault this year. How would he have done in the Mercedes? How would Rosberg have done in the Renault?

    4. Webber – Certainly would have topped this list for the first half of the season, but conclusively outpaced by Vettel in the second half, and the crash in Korea and the tepid performance in Abu Dhabi were failures to deliver under pressure that were telling. In the end, a #2 driver…sorry, Mark.

    5. Hamilton – Certainly higher than #5 in speed and talent, but at this point in his career, is still throwing too many races away with ill-advised, impatient crashes. Still have to rank him over the runner-ups.

    Runners-up: Rosberg, Button, Kobayashi

  310. Milos N says:

    Love your work James :). This site is what keeps me alive through the off-season (and the on-season :P).

    My top 5 drivers of the year:

    5. Kobayashi – The man drives like he’s possessed by demons, which can only be excorcised by overtaking as many cars as possible! Was a real pleasure to watch, and he spiced up some almost boring races this year.

    4. Kubica – Slowly, slowly getting there. Put the man in a winning car, and he WILL consistently win.

    3. Webber – Hard to choose between him and Alonso for 2nd, but as a Webber supporter, I have to put him in here. Some excellent drives in the middle of the season (despite Valencia), and though he pushed hard towards the end, he just seemed to peter out a bit.

    2. Alonso – Not my favourite personality, but you cannot deny that the man took what looked to be the third fastest car(almost 4th fastest, at times), and managed to almost win the WDC with it. A legend in his own right.

    1. Vettel – I’ve had my ups and downs with him, just like he has himself this season, but a gracious and well deserved win. The fastest man on track this year, by a long way. It’s been great to watch him mature throughout the season.

  311. Mike says:

    1 Webber
    2 Alonso
    3 Vettel
    4 Rosberg
    5 Kubica

  312. Relativity says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Hamilton
    3. Vettel
    4. Webber
    5. Rosberg

    Reasons
    ——-
    Alonso and Hamilton were always fighting an uphill battle against a clearly superior Red Bull chassis. In Ferrari’s hands such an advantage would have assured Alonso his third championship much before Abu Dhabi. The fact that they were still in contention in the last race is amazing. Alonso and Hamilton’s never give up kind of attitude is very endearing too.

    Vettel and Webber had a fairy tale year – Webber was clearly over achieving when he was on a roll mid-season but Vettel asserted himself after that. They had chassis superiority throughout the year and only driver mistakes and mechanical failure stood between them and glory this year.

    Rosberg got the better of Schumacher at his own game. Der Regenmeister was famous for putting his teammates in their place for all of his first career in F1. Johnny Herbert was famously over a second and a half slower than Schumacher at Silverstone once. Is it age? Is it superior competition? Something is obviously holding back the great man – although nobody can take anything away from Schumacher’s towering achievements in F1. Rosberg has been faster than Schumacher consistently throughout the 2010 season and he deserves respect for that.

  313. Christopher Theodoratos says:

    1 Vettel
    2 Alonso
    3 Rosberg
    4 Kubica
    4 Hamilton
    5 Webber

  314. Renzo Pigati says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Rosberg
    5. Kobayashi

  315. part time viewer says:

    1 Alonso

    he has got to be the most compleat driver on the grid at the moment, almost won the drivers title in a car that at the start of the year was awfull

    2 Kobayashi

    showed some real pace and is becoming a much wizer driver, just needs a good car now

    3 Sutil

    maybe an odd choice but its not all about the big names, domanated his team mate most of the season also needs a good car.

    4 Rosberg

    Also crushed his team mate, but this time a huge name. the first to beat is your team mate.

    5 vettel

    only just makes it in, made some very silly mistakes, was driving the best car by a mile and made winning the crown look very hard work.
    however the youngest ever world champ has to get some respect

  316. Elliot says:

    Vettel (best)
    Alonso
    Webber
    Rosberg
    Kubica

  317. Murray says:

    1. Vettel. Mostly faster than Webber in free air, worse racecraft. Gratingly immature on occasion.
    2. Webber. Not detuned by Vettel probably being ultimately faster, and one of the reasons that Vettel is.
    3. Hamilton. Mostly convincingly faster than last year’s WDC, and takes gratifying opportunities to attempt overtakes.
    4. Alonso. Works hard, aggressive and capable, but not more able to overcome an inferior car than every other driver.
    5. Kubica. Flattered his car more consistently than Rosberg could.

  318. Dave says:

    1. Kubica – was the most consistent in my books. Thinking back I cannot recall a single error on his part and constantly out performed the car.
    2. Vettel – yet for reliability would have had at least 3 victories; inconsistent races in many however flawless in the last 5 races of the season.
    3. Webber – Webber and Vettel have to be linked together. Brilliant weekends mixed with internal struggles with his own team. Let’s not forget that the difference between Webber and Vettel most of the year has been a tenth of a second on Saturday. Monaco dominance second only to a WDC in my books – he would have won that race by 40 seconds if not for the multiple safety cars.
    4. Alonso – A brilliant second half of the season however he was never dominant; win’s in Bahrain, Germany and Korea weren’t of his own making. Singapore and Monza the highlights however a first half of the year tainted by inconsistency and poor decisions.
    5. Hamilton – outperformed the car on many occasions to keep himself in the title fight. Was let down by reliability at a couple of races however clumsy moves in Monza and Singapore. Highlight was Montreal.

  319. lamar says:

    OK – I’ll go with :

    Kubica
    Hamilton
    Vettel
    Alonso
    Webber

  320. mtb says:

    1 Kubica
    2 Vettel
    3 Alonsno
    4 Webber
    5 Hamilton

  321. jeff doununder says:

    1 – Vettel – consistently fastest; world champ
    2 – Alonso – won 2nd half of season
    3 – Kubica – best pound for pound
    4 – Webber – most improved
    5 – Hulkenburg – rookie of the year

  322. paxdog57 says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Barrichello

    Strength and honour.

  323. Nigel says:

    Vettel, Alonso and Hamilton have to be in the top three – but what order to put them in ?

    It’s difficult to argue with picking the youngest ever World Champion, even if he had the fastest car (which can make any good driver look both quick and smart), and was pushed right to the last race by his teammate. Though he made his fair share of mistakes during the season, by the end he was scarily consistent. Slight doubts remain about his overtaking ability being right up there with the very best, though.

    Vettel 1

    Hamilton’s driving was as compelling as ever. Apart from a tendency to thrash his tires early in a stint (which is sometimes pointless under the current rules, when overtaking is so difficult) it’s hard to fault him – unless you condemn his refusal to accept the safe strategic podium finishes.

    Hamilton 2

    Alonso had a really mixed season, but showed incredible mental strength, and driving of the highest order in the second half of the year. I have to mark him down for the tactical blunder which cost him the championship. That was a call a driver of his strategic brilliance ought not to have left to the team (and it’s a mistake I don’t think Button would have made).

    Alonso 3

    Kubica was just plain good, pretty well all season. Can’t put him in the top three, as he was never challenging for the championship, which tests a driver in a way which simply racing for places doesn’t. He could be as good as, or better than any of the top three, but until he’s fighting them for race wins and the title, it’s too early to tell, IMO.

    Kubica 4

    If Webber had driven as well at the end of the season as he did in the middle, he’d be my driver of the year (and of course, WDC). But the first test is to beat your teammate, and he just didn’t quite make it.
    Mere thousandths of a second in PIII ceded the race at Suzuka to Vettel – had it been the other way around, he’d have been WC. But after that, he let the bastards grind him down ever so slightly.

    Webber 5

    Button just misses out. I think his tactical brain is superior to Alonso’s, but this year he was not quite on the pace. With a new car and new tires next year, that might just change.

    Rosberg – we know he’s good, but we still don’t know just how good. Roll on next year, and a more competitive car (and possibly a more competitive teammate).

    Kobyashi might have been driver of the day at a couple of GPs, but it would be perverse to put him in the top 5.

  324. Rafael says:

    1 – F. Alonso
    2 – L. Hamilton
    3 – S. Vettel
    4 – M. Webber
    5 – R. Kubica

    Regardless of how negative how many may view him and although his gesticulating towards Petrov was sad, there’s no denying Fernando Alonso is one hell of a racing driver. The fact that Fernando managed to fight for the WDC ’til the very end despite having only the 2nd/sometimes 3rd best car on the grid, justifies his relentless and ruthless aggression (German GP team orders and Chinese GP pit-lane entry). He not only resorted to find winning ways on track, but outside as well (such as winning Ferrari’s favor) – the traits of a natural born winner.

    Hamilton and Kubica – like Alonso – were also very impressive in which they also managed to drag their respective cars further up than it really should be. They both put in a valiant effort and they have everything in themselves to be proud of.

    As for the Red Bull boys: the team made very heavy weather of almost losing the 2 championships despite having the fastest cars all season. And although Seb is a worthy champion, he still has a long way to go and for sure he will only get better. Still, congrats to them! This is just the start of something big.

    As for Mark Webber…… Admirable how he stood his own in the face of discrimination from the team, but still it all pales into insignificance given how he failed to win the drivers championship. He talked the talk, but didn’t really walk the walk.

  325. Gate 21 says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Kubica
    3. Vettel
    4. Webber
    5. Kobayashi

    Alonso and Kubica both outperformed their cars’ abilities.

    Vettel’s 10 poles deserve recognition, even if he was in the fastest car.

    After a terrible season start, Webber’s Aussie Grit got him further than anyone expected him to this year.

    Kobayashi scored 32 of Sauber’s 44 points and was entertaining to watch.

  326. Paulo Vilela says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Hamilton
    4. Kubica
    5. exaequo Button and Webber

  327. RobK says:

    1= Vettel + Alonso
    3 Hamilton
    4 Webber
    5= Kobayashi + Button

    Yep, I know there are 6 :-)

  328. Ian says:

    1. Sebastien Vettel
    2. Fernando Alonso
    3. Mark Webber
    4. Lewis Hamilton
    5. Robert Kubica

  329. Kevin says:

    1 Vettel
    2 Hamilton
    3 Webber
    4 Alonso
    5 Button

  330. Alex Goss says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Webber
    3. Vettel
    4. Button
    5. Kobayashi

  331. Trent says:

    Probably too late but:
    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Hamilton
    4. Webber
    5. Rosberg

  332. Pedro Parrilla says:

    1.Vettel.
    2.Webber
    3.Alonso.
    4.Hamilton.
    5Button.

  333. Jingjing says:

    My Top Five drivers of the year:
    Alonso
    Vettel
    Webber
    Hamilton
    Button

  334. DK says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kubica

  335. Rishi says:

    I’m pretty sure if this question had been asked after each of the last few grands prix the answers would have been different in each case. It’s been that tight. However, in the end I’ve gone for:

    1. Lewis Hamilton (Monza the most obv blip but otherwise very strong and put together a string of really good performances mid-season)

    2. Sebastian Vettel (the fastest driver in the fastest car and a worthy world champion)

    3. Mark Webber (yes he may have missed his biggest chance for winning the title but I still think there are many positives to be taken out of 2010, not least those 4 victories)

    4. Robert Kubica (the odd error here and there but more than made up by several really strong drives)

    5. Fernando Alonso (yes, he made mistakes but he also drove very well in parts and was a smidgen from the title)

    AND FIVE OTHERS TO MAKE UP A TOP 10…
    6. Nico Rosberg (I really wanted to put him 5th but that would have been harsh on Alonso. Schumacher may not have had a great year, but I have still been impressed with Rosberg)

    7. Jenson Button (a little bit harsh admittedly. Made very few mistakes compared to rivals, but occasionally lacking the last few tenths – particularly in qualifying)

    8. Rubens Barrichello (F1′s veteran keeps on going with little sign of slowing down)

    9. Adrian Sutil (an improved season for the German; the less said about Korea the better admittedly)

    10. Kamui Kobayashi (his occasionally swashbuckling performances mask his inconsistency but glad Sauber have re-signed him for next year. I almost gave this to Nico Hulkenberg largely for his pole lap in Brazil but that would have done Kobayashi a disservice I think)

  336. Gareth says:

    1. vettel – 5 wins, 10 (!) Pole positions, and, had it not been for some reliability issues, would surely have won by a bigger margin. matured visibly as the season went on, and was brilliant in the pressure last four races.

    2. kubica – thrashed his team-mate, and produced some fine moments of top quality driving. in the right car, I feel he could be a future world champion.

    3. alonso – germany aside, proved himself to be the man with ice in his veins who cares not a jot what people think and squeezed the maximum out of a car that was worthy, but dwarfed by the mighty rb6, and on occasion the mclaren. Best all-round driver on the grid.

    4. Rosberg – hammered schumacher, and largely went unnoticed, putting in some smooth drives and quietly enhancing his reputation.

    5. button – we all new lewis would be quick, but most expected him to make mincemeat out of jensen, who settled into mclaren very well,providing balance to the team and produced some inspired strategical calls. best manager of tyres in f1, which may be crucial next year. A fine ambassador for the sport too.

  337. Niall says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Kubica
    3. Rosberg
    4. Vettel
    5. Webber

  338. Adrian Setterfield says:

    Hi James,

    My picks of the season are:

    1. Alonso – for coming so close in his first season with Ferrari combined with the fact that the car was not comparible to Red Bull fir the first half of the season.
    2. Vettel – for showing blinding speed. He would be number one except for the fact that he made racing errors when overtaking.
    3. Webber – for keeping up (and beating) Vettel. Webber was fastest on the day a number of times. Webber also made the most dynamic overtaking moves.
    4. Rosberg – for outshining Schumacher and demonstrating incredible consistency. In the right car, he would have won this year. Would be higher if he had a personality.
    5. Barrichello – for showing that age is no barrier. The fact that Williams kept thier higher paid driver shows that his technical ability is critical to Williams development. On the face of it, Hulkenberg seemed just as fast but maybe he was following Barrichello’s lead.

    Thanks James for the insight and commentary. I check your blog daily and it adds a lot to the experience of following Formula 1.

  339. Robert Gunning says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Alonso
    3. Vettel
    4. Hamilton
    5. Webber

  340. Kiran Hudson says:

    Alonso – Team let him down in the end but proved he is the best even without the best car.
    Vettel – Supremely fast and WDC
    Kubica – Crap car, enormously talented driver
    Hamilton – Stuffed up a few times but still the king of passing and the last ditch dive
    Kobayashi – The Banzai was hugely entertaining and never say die. Needs to develop as a driver still but will be fun watching that

  341. Jason says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Rosberg

  342. D. says:

    1. Vettel – yes, he had the fastest car, but also DNFs; he dominated qualifying and rose to the occasion when it mattered most; won 3 of the last 4 GPs in absolutely convincing fashion … if the youngest champion in F1 history is not the driver of the year, then who is ?
    2. Alonso – he would (and perhaps should) have been the champion, were it not for that inexplicable team blunder to pit him early in Abu Dhabi (conspiracy theorists, feel free to comment); he clearly had a lesser car than RBR for virtually the entirely season, but his ability and experience brought him on the verge of a 3rd title
    3. Rosberg – clearly in a lesser car; thoroughly outperformed Michael, and consistently maximized results; most improved driver this year
    4. Kubica – same arguments as for Nico
    5. Hamilton – still the best on-track passer, car let him down in the 2nd half, but he consistently overachieved; w/out a couple of DNFs he would be in the thick of it all, all the way to the end (in fact he virtually was)

  343. Phillip says:

    The, THE, story of the year is Ferrari losing, LOSING, the World Driver’s Championship. I know it hasn’t be ignored, but this should be the topic of every conversation (almost).

    Fernando finishing in 7th place in a title decider behind Barrichello Rosberg and Petrov is insane. The pitwall literally gave away a WDC.

    The second story is that Massa is not a earning his seat anymore, and no one will even mention it out of respect for him and his accident. (Does anyone remember when Kimi stole the extra lap at the end of qualifying from him a few years ago and when asked about it he did not even comprehend the strategic advantage?) Massa is a fast driver, but he lacks the mental ability to be a great driver.

    The list:

    Fernando: #1. He would have earned it just by the pit entry pass on his teammate. But, what really earns it for him is that he is the core of a team in his first year there. The Scuderia has been gutted by losses big and small, and the result is rudderless organization. They dearly miss their little Napolean! Not only is Fernando the team leading driver, he is providing the center of power that used to be held by Todt, Brawn, Byrne and Shumi. Now, there is no one strong left, just the occasional Montezemolo and Fernando. No other driver (save the #2 ranked pilot, see blow) had so many demands and such responsibility.

    Kubica: #2. Fair enough, it is a team trained to accept leadership from its driver, but Kubica met this challenge. Freed from a benevolent dictator whose every move is considered, Kubica could give free head to his “win, always win” mentality. It showed, and he pulled his team along. In fact, he made a racing driver out of Petrov – that was the most amazing thing!

    Vettel: #3. Fastest car for sure, and mistakes of his own making. But, reflective in interviews in a manner all but forgotten by today’s drivers. And, consistently able to get the very last bit of speed out of a great car – exactly what Barrichello lacked at Ferrari and what makes is so hard to take listening to him moan now about being mistreated…
    Always Be Fast. Sebastian Vettel. You could get worse out of a driver.

    Hamilton: #4. Destroying his teammate, quick almost everywhere, a racing spirit that sometimes catches him out, and yet not a leader. He is a fast spacer – somewhere between the steering wheel and the fuel cell every team needs to put a driver. Hamilton isn’t slower than a single one of them, but he waits for his team, takes what they provide. He hasn’t yet grabbed them by the throat and dragged a faster car out of them.

    Webber by default: #5. Generally, the faster your car the more that is asked of you as a driver. Everyone else left had a car with enough faults and limitations that the any lulls in a driver’s performance were easily masked by old cliches (our car didn’t suit the circuit, the tyres, the strategy…) Webber carried the burden of having his talent on display, of being unable to hide – the outright performance of his car thrust him into the spotlight. Succeed or fail, it was down to him and clear to all to see. He acquitted himself well enough, but he did lose in the end. And it wasn’t the fault of the car.

  344. DJ says:

    5) Button
    4) Hamilton
    3) Alonso
    2) Webber
    1) Vettel

  345. Andrew H says:

    1. Webber
    2. Alonso
    3. Hamilton
    4. Vettel
    5. Kobayashi

    1. Andrew H says:

      Yes I am serious. The thought of Webber winning is what kept encouraging me to stay up for 10pm race starts and made me really enjoy the season. I really enjoyed the season, I watched the last race but I missed the previous three where he didn’t do so well. I chose Webber because he is what kept me stuck to the television and what had me religiously read James’ site everyday, that’s what was important to me.

  346. TJS says:

    1. vettel – the points don’t lie
    2. alonso – so close!
    3. kubica – amazing consistency
    4. webber – not bad for a #2
    5. hamilton – a distant fifth

  347. Rohan says:

    1. Lewis Hamilton
    2. Sebastian Vettel
    3. Robert Kubica
    4. Nico Rosberg
    5. Fernando Alonso

  348. DavidW says:

    My 5 are

    1.Alonso
    2.Vettel
    3.Hamilton
    4.Kubica
    5.Webber

  349. Ben says:

    1 Kubica
    2 Alonso
    3 Vettel
    4 Webber
    5 Rosberg

    Or something like that :)

  350. Joseph says:

    Hello James, Great work this year love listing to your work on ONE HD great job and good work on all the articles.

    1. Alonso – Didn’t have the greatest car out of all the front runners but was able to make it work when needed.

    2. Kubica – Showed that he is very competitive even though he was not able to challenge for poles or wins was consistent and made the podium a few times.

    3. Webber – Had the best year of his carer lead the championship for most of the year, although hey made mistakes he really made his teammate work for the title.

    4. Vettel – Had the best car in the field but made many mistakes although some where mechanical. Critically Vettel should have won the championship many rounds prior to Abu Dhabi.

    5. Rosberg – Everybody said at the start of the season that he had no chance of going head to head against his a 7 time world champion. In the end he showed the world that he is up to any challenge.

  351. Kevin Joyce says:

    5. Fernando Alonso – His mighty comeback saved his mediocre first half of the season.

    4. Sebastian Vettel – 10 pole positions but only 5 race wins.

    3. Lewis Hamilton – Outperformed his car all season once again.

    2. Robert Kubica – Made the difference on the circuits that mattered, Monaco, Spa, and Suzuka.

    1. Mark Webber – Incidents aside, overcoming and matching Vettel’s raw speed from 2009 was no mean feat, and his experience shone in races like Hungary.

  352. zombie says:

    1) Vettel
    2)Alonso
    3)Kubica
    4)Hamilton
    5)Webber

    Apart from the top 5, Schumacher deserves a honorary mention.In 2006 when Hakinnen tested a Mclaren for a full day,he was a good 3 seconds off the pace,Schumi trailed his teammate by 0.4s right from day 1 and had reduced it to nothing by mid-season. I just don’t see any of the current boys having the stamina or gall to make a comeback after 3 years in a car and tyres that were radically different to what he was used to and race with guys half his age! Kudos to the old King! And going by the comments on internet, i think he made quite a few new fans this season!

  353. David Baric says:

    One thing people need to remember is that Webber was the only one fighting other drivers and His own team to get those results.

  354. Nick Robertson says:

    1. Webber
    2. Vettel
    3. Kubica
    4. Alonso
    5. Hamilton

    Shame it wasn’t a top 10, or I’d have Trulli, Senna, Rosberg, Heidfeld and Chandhock in there ;)

  355. Rocky S says:

    1- Kubica
    2- Vettel
    3- Alonso
    4- Hamilton
    5- Webber

  356. andrew says:

    1Vettel 2Alonso 3 Kubica 4 Webber 5 Hamilton

  357. Paul says:

    Here are my top five:

    1. Webber
    2. Alonso
    3. Vettel
    4. Rosberg
    5. Hamilton

    It’s a tricky one – there are at least 10 drivers who deserve to be in the top 5!! Enjoyed your blog all year again James, thanks for sharing your insights and making JA.F1 such a great place for serious, intelligent race fans to discuss our great sport.

  358. Dan D. says:

    Hi James,

    First I’d like to say that I will be buying your book regardless but I do enjoy your giveaways. I also wanted to say that this will be my second ever book about modern F1, the first being your Schumi book.

    Anyways, here’s my list:

    1. Vettel – Always been a fan ever since his Friday practice days at Sauber and his first race with them in the States. He’s had ups and downs all season but the way he battled back at the end truly showed us that he is one of the best – certainly the best this season.

    2. Webber – This list, I think, will look more like a “most-improved” list than a summary of the best drivers on the grid. Although Webber is certainly not up to the caliber of some others, the way he drove in Barcelona and Monaco put him in second on my list.

    3. Alonso – I really enjoyed watching him battle back. I was a Ferrari fan ever since Schumacher joined along and Kimi managed to keep me one. As soon as Alonso came to Ferrari I had my doubts and started losing interest but after his performance the second half of the season, he’s made me take a second look. Happy Vettel won though…

    4. Kubica – More of a Kubica fan than I am a Vettel fan. Really liked the way he pushed that Renault to the edge and fought hard every race.

    5. Rosberg – I guess I should say that most of all, I’m a Schumacher fan. I hope he comes back next season and grabs a pole or a win or something but this season Rosberg really brought together some great drives.

    So yeah I didn’t put Hamilton or Button on there – this likely invalidates my list however, for what it’s worth, they would have been 6th and 7th.

  359. Linda says:

    1. Vettel, despite all the mechanical failures and whatnot out of his control, he managed to come out on top in the end when it mattered.

    2. Webber, a number of undeniably perfect drives, able to step up, being finally given a performing car, had to deal with all the internal team issues.

    3. Alonso, for almost correctly predicting he would win the WDC

    4. Kubica, consistently between cars that were significantly better.

    5. Rosberg, barely put a foot wrong all season, outqualified schumacher despite all the hype and pressure.

  360. Joe Sumegi says:

    Hi James

    Enjoyed the site and your input on ONE HD’s coverage of the season. Here are my picks -

    5. Hamilton
    4. Kubica
    3. Webber
    2. Alonso
    1. Vettel

    Last year we had the same picks – here’s hoping for two in a row!

  361. Racergil says:

    1. Vettel (great recovery against the odds)
    2. Alonso (really brought it to Ferrari)
    3. Webber (a career season)
    4. Hamilton (racy, very very racy, all year)
    5. Button (unlikely 2 race winner, wc contender all season, with new team)

  362. Lawrence says:

    1 Kubica – just drove really hard
    2 Vettel – right timeing
    3 Webber – sometimes didnt have the speed to vettel
    4 Rosberg – miles ahead of M.S.
    5 Kobayashi – created a great show

  363. G says:

    Great site James, I visit every day. It’s made what has been one of the best seasons in years even better : )

    Now my top 5 are as follows (though i probably won’t win anything with this…)

    1. Alonso – Simply because, as others have said before me, despite a rough first half of the season he came back from it like a beast, and in the 2nd/3rd best car no less. He reminded all of us of the driver he was from 2005-2006 and proved that he is a force to be reckoned with, especially in a Ferrari.

    2. Webber – He let pressure get to him in the end but i felt, over all he had a great season. I never would have thought he’d be in championship contention. He did a great job!

    3. Vettel – youngest WDC has to mean something, it certainly doesn’t happen accidentally. Only reason i haven’t put him in the number one position is because he hasn’t shown (at least from my point of view) a particular strength in fighting his way through from the back. He can certainly lead a race, but can he fight his way to the front? Not quite sure yet.

    4. Kubica – he’s on his way up, just needs a competitive car. Enough said.

    5. Hamilton – Don’t like him personally but he’s definitely had a great season this year, getting the most out of the car.

    Waiting anxiously for 2011 season! It’s going to be fantastic! hopefully….

  364. dan bartlett says:

    1 alonso
    2 vettel
    3 webber
    4 kubica
    5 rosberg

  365. Karthick says:

    1) Vettel
    2) Alonso
    3) Hamiltion
    4) Webber
    5) Kubica

  366. Ayron says:

    1. Vettel
    10 poles, 2x blown engines while leading races and he still won. Fastest driver in the fastest car and stepped up a number of times under immense pressure
    2. Webber
    led the championship the most, came back brilliantly after a horrifying crash, was the only competition for Vettel for many races
    3. Alonso
    superb second half of the season and unlucky not to snatch the title away from Red Bull
    4. Hamilton
    Was always competitive, even when the car was struggling or handling poorly
    5. Rosberg
    Outperformed a seven-times world champion throughout the season, albeit in a come-back season

    Notable performers,
    Kubica – great talent in an improving car, although a little quiet late in the season
    Hulkenberg – unlucky to be losing his ride to a driver he’s proven better than due to money concerns
    Kobayashi – what an exciting racer he is. needs to improve his qualifying and consistency

    A difficult year to pick the top five. A good problem to have… :)

  367. Sergio101 says:

    1) Alonso
    2) Vettel
    3) Hamilton
    4) Rosberg
    5) Kubica

  368. Pawel Szymanski says:

    1.Vettel
    2.Kubica
    3.Rosberg
    4.Alonso
    5.Webber

  369. BlackGoldLotus says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Kubica
    3. Vettel
    4. Webber
    5. Kobayashi

  370. Wombat says:

    Just as it all worked out in the end – it includes all the winner in 2010:
    1 Vettel
    2 Alonso
    3 Webber
    4 Hamilton
    5 Button

    Every one of these at some point was doing very well BUT only Vettel challenged at the front all season. An undoubted talent but one who relies on his instincts (and luck). This can and does bring him undone, but it also provides an edge others rarely have been able to match.

  371. JamtriX says:

    1.Vettel
    2.Alonso
    3.Kubica
    4.Hamilton
    5.Webber

  372. Konstantin says:

    1. Alonso and Vettel
    2. Webber
    3. Rosberg
    4. Hulkenberg

  373. Tony G says:

    5 Kubica
    4 Alonso
    3 Webber
    2 Vettel
    1 Hamilton

    I pick Hamilton as my #1 as he put that car in places it shouldn’t have been. He comprehensively outdrove Button and is my favourite for the title next year. Touch and go between the Red Bull two but Vettel gets the nod as he would have steeted the championship if his car hadn’t let him down so often. Webber was the absolute surprise of the season and must be kicking himself over that crash in Korea and letting Vettel through in Malaysia and of course must be seething at team management for that fiasco in Turkey. Alonso showed what the Ferrari could do but made too many mistakes for a double world champion. Kubica shades Rosberg on consistency.

  374. Mark says:

    Hi,
    Great job again this season James, your still the first F1 website I look at. My choice is a bit different than most:

    1. Button, never expected to do well at McLaren but has kept Hamilton honest.
    2. Vettel, great season but a few mistakes.
    3. Hamilton, Pushed hard most of the season with an inferior car.
    4. Alonso, great season but making Massa let him past means he does not deserve to be any higher.
    5. Webber, great season but the architect of his own downfall.

  375. Arnie S says:

    Here follows the result of the Grand Prix Jury :)

    1) Seb Vettel – WDC
    2) Fernando Alonso – a star in every car
    3) Mark Webber – close, but ultimately did not show the pace
    4) Lewis Hamilton – Always a star driver, shows that he’s on top of the field
    5) Nico Rosberg – outperforms MS and is a “new” star to rise

  376. Iceman says:

    1. Vettel – made mistakes but got it together when it counted the most
    2. Webber – had to contend with inferior parts, his team-mate and doubts he could match it with younger likes of Hamilton, Vettel and Alonso and co
    3. Alonso – came from nowhere mid season in a slower car to take title down to the wire
    4. Hamilton – much more relaxed, complete version emerged this year, more at own with himself
    5. Kubica – made the most of his package, took podiums, would have been title contender if with Ferrari.

  377. Luce says:

    What a great season.

    1. Webber
    2. Hamilton
    3. Alonso
    4. Kubica
    5. Kobayashi

  378. Racyboy says:

    Rosberg…Absolutely nailed the great one.

    Webber …Monaco Silverstone Hungary

    Alonso …New Team …and Monza.

    Vettel …Pulled himself together when it mattered.

    Button …New Team with a champion team-mate.

    1. Paige says:

      “Button …New Team with a champion team-mate.”

      … who destroyed him.

      1. Racyboy says:

        ….but not by as much as he should have.

      2. Paige says:

        If he didn’t make the dumb mistakes at Monza and Singapore that he did, he would have.

        It was not even close on pace. It was nowhere in the vicinity of close. Hamilton destroyed Button on pace by as much as Alonso destroyed Massa.

  379. Charlie B says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Kubica
    4. Webber
    5. Kobayashi

  380. David Brown says:

    Thanks for the incisive commentary all season.

    1 Vettel
    2 Webber
    3 Alonso
    4 Hamilton
    5 Button

  381. Tee Jay says:

    1. Lewis Hamilton
    2. Fernando Alonso
    3. Sebestian Vettel
    4. Mark Webber
    5. Nico Rosberg

    Not includung Mark, all 4 beat their team mates in top teams. Mark just had a stellar year.

    Notable mentions to Kubica and Kayumi

  382. Dave Walker says:

    1 Vettel
    2 Hamilton
    3 Kubica
    4 Rosberg
    5 Kobayashi

  383. Chau says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Webber
    3. Alonso
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kubica

  384. cobbs says:

    1. Webber – did amazingly well on the “drivers” tracks like Monaco, Silverstone, Spa despite the teams management was not 100% behind him. Hard to do mentally. Was kind on the car and finished the most races in the points of all drivers. 5 Poles and was only off Vettel by a 10th quite often. 1 mistake in Korea on a weird surface cost the WDC.
    2. Vettel – 10 poles, was the quickest over a lap but hard on car, crash happy (Spa and Turkey- what was he thinking?). But improved his driving just in time to win WDC. Great talent – will win more titles more easily as he matures.
    3. Kubica – dragged car and team above itself on “drivers” tracks like Monaco, Spa and others. Ferrari should grab him asap.
    4. Rosberg – drove above the very average Mercedes and smashed Schumacher.
    5. Nico Hülkenberg. Pole on a wet/dry track in Brazil in a very slow car showed he is a future great.

    1. D. says:

      The guy who (predictably, sadly) lost a healthy lead w/ only 4 races to go, and who could not perform when it really mattered, is the driver of the year for you ?

      Let’s be just a bit serious.

      1. cobbs says:

        He did the most with what he had

  385. ArunasNesvarbu says:

    1. Alonso best driver in our days.
    2. Kubica fastest driver in our days.
    3. Vettel master of qualifying, it reminds me…
    4. Hamilton would be #1, but too much DNF.
    5. Webber when everybody wrote him off before season, he showes them.

  386. Paige says:

    1. Vettel- He went to hell and back this year and came out of the experience a stronger, better, and wiser driver. Oh, and he won the World Championship.

    2. Hamilton- No driver was as good as he was adjusted for the car he drove. If he hadn’t made those two stupid overtaking attempts in Monza and Singapore, he would have been champion. He got as much out of the car as could be had, and he destroyed his World Champion teammate.

    3. Webber- He out-shined Vettel for a lot of the season after so many people took him for dead in the water from the beginning of the year. He really showed his quality this year.

    4. Alonso- Did a great job leading Ferrari this year. He really drug himself back into title contention late in the year and helped Ferrari develop the car.

    5. Kubica- Like Hamilton, he really got the absolute most out of the car this year. If he ever gets into a competitive car, the rest of the grid could be in serious trouble.

  387. seifenkistler says:

    Hard decision, being german and to choose only 5, and 3 from my home state: Vettel, Rosberg and Glock ;)

    Hopefully without too much national proud:

    1 Vettel
    2 Hamilton
    3 Alonso
    4 Schuhmacher
    5 Webber

    1 Vettel — mainly because he became adult the last third of the season and was more or less without errors in this third, 75+points lost because of malfunctions

    2 Hamilton — had to take riscs in last third of season or the other drivers had no longer respect for his aggressive overtaking

    3 Alonso — was it him or errors of the rest

    4 Schuhmacher — He was overtaking, he had a lot of talks about him, he became better and better the more he understood the Mercedes (closed the gap to Rosberg end of the season), the change of his character during the season – to his advantage. But i think there will be some discussions with his wife if he should do another season after nearly being killed.

    5 Webber — Even last race he collided with the wall, too many failures under pressure, mainly in because he lead WDC for quite a time

    6 Rosberg – overall more points than Schumi, but comparing the learning curves, Schumi closed the gap at the end

    7 Button — was it Button or the team tactic which moved him to front for many races

  388. Kenneth C says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Rosberg
    5. Kubica

  389. George Wilson says:

    This is tough as I feel (as James does) that maybe 7 drivers were great all season, but
    nobody really has a flawless season as a whole, so for that reason…

    1) Vettel – Won the WDC, and for all the criticism directed at him, I don’t think he made
    many more mistakes than the other championship contenders when the season is looked at as a
    whole (Button aside, but Jenson finished 5th overall, so that says something – and I don’t
    like saying that as I’m a Button fan!). 10 poles and the most wins tells you something.

    2) Webber – I unfortunately feel he choked as the pressure built, but if he hadn’t have
    crashed in Korea, I think he would now be champion. His performances mid season were
    stunning, and he led the championship for a large chunk of time. Was more often than not
    within a tenth or two of Vettel in quali too. I think he can now be considered in the top
    tier of drivers.

    3) Alonso – Ferrari looked down and out, but his brilliance in the latter half of the
    season gave him a very good shot at the title. It was lost through no fault of his own.
    Maybe in the first half of the season he was a bit quiet, but when he got sniff of the title
    he was hard to stop.

    4) Hamilton – I’m not particularly fond of the guy, but have to admit he more often than not
    put the Mclaren where it shouldn’t have been. If the car had been even a bit better, I think
    he would have been right in the hunt. Impressive. I would have put him above Alonso and
    possibly Webber if he didn’t make the couple of crucial errors he did. Whatever people say,
    I think Button in the team has done him some good.

    5) Kobayashi – I very nearly put Kubica here, but I just feel RK did a good job, but not an
    amazing one. We really don’t know how fast Petrov is, and sometimes Petrov did beat him,
    which, if Kubica was doing such an AMAZING job, shouldn’t have been possible. KK on the
    other hand really impressed me. He was a bit dodgy early on, but when he got into his stride
    put the car where it shouldn’t have been, and was impressively consistent, combining this
    with fearless overtaking. Great rookie season, and I can’t wait to see him develop.

    As I said RK just missed out. I was pleased Button did a solid job, but he was frustratingly
    off the pace on a few too many weekends. I hope that he will be a bit more consistent next
    season with more experience in the team. Also very impressed with Kovalainen, such a nice guy
    and he seemed so much happier than he was at Mclaren. Not sure why Rosberg seems to be loved
    by everyone here. He beat a 40 year old who hadn’t raced in a few years. He did a solid,
    rather than spectacular job.

    1. George Wilson says:

      Oh, and forgot to say GREAT site James. First port of call for all my F1 news.

  390. Mac says:

    1. Alonso (for having the third fastest car and only losing the WDC because he team got a call wrong in one race and gifted the WDC to Vettel)

    2. Webber (for his grit and determination in a less than fully supportive team, for his celebrations in Monaco, for surviving in Valencia, and for shooting straight from the hip)

    3. Vettel (for driving well enough, but he made mistakes [driving into Button and Webber] and failed to make the most of having the fastest car on the grid)

    4. Button (for having the guts to join Hamilton’s team and managing to hold his own against Hamilton despite many old F1 lags at the start of the season saying that Hamilton would annihilate him)

    5. Hamilton (for some feisty drives – but he undermined his own season with some impetuous mistakes that cost him points and denied the viewers a real racing spectacle)

  391. AP says:

    1. Vettel — because he is the world champion
    2. Alonso — because he recovered from a 47-point deficit, and made Ferrari a title contender in an inferior car
    3. Webber — because of his fighting spirit
    4. Kubica — because he was instrumental in the resurgence of Renault
    5. Button — because of his great tactical calls

  392. Philip Cheng says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Rosberg

  393. lockster says:

    Kubica
    Rosberg
    Alonso
    Vettel
    Webber

  394. Ryan says:

    1 Webber
    2 Vettel
    3 Rosberg
    4 Hamilton
    5 Kobayashi

  395. John Rymarchuk says:

    1- Vettel – for taking the Championship as the youngest to ever do so in Kimi-esque fashion
    2- Alonso – for an impressive debut season without being able to tell in a car that was sometimes not in the top 2 but still challenging all the way to the end
    3- Webber – a great season in which he clearly wasnt the team’s number 1
    4- Kobayashi- for continuing on where he started last year, a little slow perhaps but very entertaining. first point in Turkey and finished the season with 30+
    5- Hamilton- Great drives and championship challenger in what was not the best car and kept a good relationship with his WC winning teamate

  396. tonys says:

    1. Hamilton, Best overtaker this year, Would have won if not for trying a couple of overtakes, deserves respect for that.
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber mostly matched (0.05sec avg difference in quali) who is considered fastest on the grid.
    4. Alonso, got to respect him for what he did, would be higher if it was not for Hockenheim.
    5. Rubens Barrichello – still going strong, outperformed much younger team mate

  397. Giovanny D says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Rosberg
    3. Button
    4. Hamilton
    5. Alonso

  398. onyx says:

    I always look at this by asking myself if i was a team boss who would I want driving for me..
    1.Vettel
    2.Hamilton
    3.Alonso
    4.Kubica
    5.Hulkenberg-on his way to Ferrari….

  399. Jo Torrent says:

    1 – Vettel

    2 – Alonso

    3 – Hamilton

    4 – Kubica

    5 – Kobayashi

    1. Jo Torrent says:

      Actually, I think that Alonso is the best driver of the season. He was flawless under pressure and achieved great results with the 2nd and even the 3rd quickest car in the field.

      I did put Vettel 1st even though, he drove with less quality than Alonso because of his bad luck(too many mechanical issues) and the fact that he kept believing in himself despite his mistakes, the media pressure after his accidents. He’ll grow stronger for sure

      Hamilton because of his brilliant overtaking moves and some very fast races

      Kubica because of some really great drives despite a weaker car.

      Kobayashi because he’s one of the reasons that makes love motor racing even though Rosberg was a better driver than him

  400. S2K says:

    1. Vettel – he is the champion!
    2. Alonso – for nearly getting the title, shame with his car’s poor pace at the beginning ogf the “European Season”
    3. Kobayashi – he reminds me of Sato but he is more calculated than Takuma, still a pleasure to watch
    4. Kubica – another pleasure to watch
    5. Rosberg – for making M Schumacher look small

    Missing:
    1. Webber – for not knowing to maintain the gap that he once had
    2. Hamilton – for being average and making too many mistakes
    3. Massa – for “why is he there for?”

  401. Alistair Blevins says:

    5. Kubica
    4. Hamilton
    3. Webber
    2. Alonso
    1. Vettel

  402. Frenchie says:

    1. Sebastian Vettel – In a year where all five championship contenders made huge mistakes, the driver who won the most races (five – amount equally shared Alonso), scored most pole positions, led the most laps and scored the most points deserves to be the driver of the year. And if it wasn’t for poor reliability, he would also have won Bahrain, Australia and Korea.
    2. Fernando Alonso – Placed himself in a position to pick up the pieces when it mattered in both Bahrain, then in Korea. He had to put his mark on a Massa biased the team relatively early in the season. He did just that by overtaking his teammate at the first corner in Bahrain, by being stuck behind the sister Ferrari in Melbourne and the coup de grace came when he overtook his Felipe in the pitlane in China. Germany was only the confirmation of what we already all knew: Ferrari is Alonso’s team. His comments during the Singapore qualifying when there was doubt over his engine also shown he was driving both car and team. He was able to put a string of He also placed himself in the history books by winning his first race for Ferrari and by taking pole and winning at Monza.
    3. Mark Webber – “Not bad for a number two driver.” He fought for his own corner internally all year long due to being the unexpected surprise of 2010. He had the measure of his teammate during the first three quarter of the season not on raw speed but by being more consistent. Took brilliant victories in Monaco and Silverstone and was able to convert Hungary into a win by driving a Schumacher-esque stint before his pit stop. He could have been both champion and driver of the year had he not got tense under the championship pressure from Korea onwards. 2009 was his best season so far. He bettered that in 2010 with four victories and by fighting for the championship up until the last round.
    4. Robert Kubica – Possibly the strongest driver on the grid in 2010. I felt he drove the more consistently to the limits of the car. Compared to the five championship contenders, he only made a single high profile(-ish) mistake by missing his pit box in Belgium and handed second place to Webber. He still managed to score three podiums in a vastly inferior car. He would have been higher in this table had he had to experience the championship pressure of my top three.
    5. Jenson Button – Who would have thought the incumbent champion would have done so well against Lewis Hamilton when he signed up to McLaren at the end of last year? Over the course of the season, Lewis seemed to have the edge over Button but the strategy calls he made to win both Australia and China were brilliant. He faded away mid-season but ended with two strong drives in Brazil and Abu Dhabi. It was a close call between him and Lewis. He gets by making the right decision to switch team and by not getting destroyed by Lewis as predicted by just about everyone.

    1. Paige says:

      Umm… Yeah, Lewis did destroy him.

  403. René Brandenburg says:

    1: Vettel
    2: Alonso
    3: Webber
    4: Hamilton
    5: Kubica

  404. Marty G says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Webber
    3. Alonso
    4. Hamilton
    5. Rosberg

  405. carol says:

    5.Button – slotted into McLaren well
    4.Rosberg – beat team mate practically every race
    3.Alonso – some great races, too many mistakes
    2.Hamilton – kept pushing to the end & outperformed the car
    1.Webber – his best season, outstanding wins at some of hardest tracks (monaco etc.), worked twice as hard as anyone else for his wins as the team were clearly backing Vettel

  406. Just A Bloke (Martin) says:

    1-Rosberg-Did not crack under the pressure out performed Schumi, what more could he do in that car?

    2-Kovalienen, Was able to relax and drive, to me he was key in delivering for Lotus

    3-Vettel Was the FASTEST , if the not he BEST driver of the season

    4-Alonso Was the BEST if not the fastest driver of the season, but had a totally focussed team to cocoon him.

    5-Hamilton, Was the best racer, agressive, good to watch, good for the sport.

    Kubica, probably should be there, managed to get a midfield car into the top five on occasion, Kobayashi, not fazed by anything, always tries and good value. Algushari, seemed to develop well deserves an F1 career.

    Disappointments. Button, really never had the speed of Lewis, Trulli, blows hot and cold, as ever ! MAssa, blown away by Alsonso, never recovered from Germany. Petrov, excellent potential too many errors

  407. Chris says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Kubica
    3. Hamilton
    4. Vettel
    5. Rosberg

  408. Dave Revill says:

    5. Webber
    4. Vettel
    3. Rosberg
    2. Kubica
    1. Alonso

  409. Labold says:

    1. Vettel, sheer speed
    2. Rosberg, annihilating Schumi
    3. Alonso, wringing 100% from a so-so Ferrari
    4. Kubica, always there
    5. Kobayashi, entertaining

  410. debb says:

    1 Webber
    2 Kubica
    3 Vettel
    4 Alonso
    5 Button

  411. Robbiehooper says:

    I think it should be:
    1. Vettel – a few mistakes but did what he had to
    2. Alonso – fantastic run to nearly win the title
    3. Webber – best we’ve ever seen him
    4. Kubica – constantly put himself where his car shouldn’t be
    5. Hamilton – had he finished in Singapore and Monza he would have been champion by 8 points (2 fourth places)

  412. Liam Banks says:

    Tough decision (extremely tough) but here my top 5!
    1)Vettel
    2)Webber
    3)Kubica
    4)Button
    5)Kobayashi

    okay reaasons
    Vettel – youngest ever world champion,handled the pressure extremely well despite his age, was never fazed by anything happening in the team and aside from some techinical flaw would of wrapped up the season ages ago despite his errors!
    Webber – no one gave him a shot against vettel yet he pushed him till the very last race, was never afraid to say his mind and go against his own team which shows a great deal of courage and i hope he gets another crack next year
    Kubica – I said this last year and ill say it again hes a champion of the future, hes completely outdriving his car, is spectacular to watch,amazing at overtaking and except for one pit lane incident has not put a foot wrong even under immense pressure from faster cars behind all season. Please renault provide him a championship worthy car or lets get him at a championship team.
    Button – I know its strange he is on here but not hamilton even i know that. However he has silenced each and everyone of his critics who said he would be torn apart by hamilton. Hes come into a new team with pressure to perform like hes NEVER had in his f1 career and has pushed Hamilton most of the season!Thing is button needs a car that suits him to perform, hes gonna be helping build next years car from the ground up.. I cant wait to see this next year him vs hamilton in a car suited for button. should be a spectacular battle.
    Kobayashi – Lived up to my exectations of him and is the most exciting dirver to watch in f1. His overtaking ability is beyond belief and hes such a battler!! And hes quick to back it up!I cant wait to see if he has the ability to battle for the championship i think in the future him vs hamilton vs kubica vs vettel could be a championship battle and a thrilling one at that!

  413. Paul Mc says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Vettel
    3. Alonso
    4. Webber
    5. Rosberg

  414. Ryan Eckford says:

    My three top drivers in 2010 are Alonso, Hamilton and Kubica. Alonso and Hamilton for taking on the Red Bulls all year long in what was a likely losing cause for the both of them, and Kubica dragging the Renault up the grid to places where it did not deserve to be. His performances at the circuits that allow the very best drivers to drag average cars up the grid: Monaco, Spa and Suzuka. Especially in Monaco where he qualified on the front row. Shame about the start, which ended any hope of a shock win, but a podium it would be. I am a bit disappointed that Red Bull didn’t win the Constructors Championship earlier because if they had two of those three drivers, it would have been over sooner. If they had one of those drivers, both titles would have been over.

  415. Tom says:

    1 Vettel
    2 Webber
    3 Alonso
    4 Button
    5 Hamilton

  416. Paul Trappett says:

    1 – Vettel
    2 – Alonso
    3 – Webber
    4 – Kubica
    5 – Hamilton

  417. Guy says:

    1. Mark Webber – lead most often
    2. Sebastian Vettel – most poles
    3. Lewis Hamilton – most sportsmanlike
    4. Nico Rosberg – most improved
    5. Robert Kubica – always a factor

  418. Senthil says:

    1.Webber
    2.Vettel
    3.Alonso
    4.Hamilton
    5.Robert Kubica

  419. Jon says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Vettel
    3. Alonso
    4. Webber
    5. Hamilton

  420. Ben G says:

    Alonso

    Vettel

    Kobayashi

    Button

    Barrichello

  421. Augusto Baena says:

    My say.
    1. Alonso: for his competitive faith and epic second half of the season, with some brilliant drives, spoiled by some mistakes (China, Monaco)
    2. Vettel: flawless qualifying sessions and races, but only performs when starting from pole. When in traffic, he is more erratic and has crashed too often against rivals
    3. Webber: amazing 1st half of the season, with brilliant drives. All-rounder. Better at managing races than Vettel, though not so ultimately quick. Competitive. Lost second half to team-mate and lost too much energy on mind games
    4. Kubica. I would put him #1 as his performance is always amazing, way beyond his car’s potential, but we need him as a title contender to really benchmark him
    5. Hamilton. Competive style and the best dog-fighter (overtaker) in the grid. Watching him race is worth the ticket, but has made some relevant mistakes for not seeing the whole picture

  422. Stevie P says:

    Tough one – everyone had their moment, their day in the sun, with some great driving at times. But here are my thoughts:-

    1 – Vettel; he took the crown and has been the fastest lights to flag driver (albeit in the fastest car) all year – mechanical failures, beyond his control, affected him and kept the championship close when he really should have romped away with it.

    2- Alonso; kept fighting, didn’t give up, remarkable comeback and great form from mid-season onwards – will be ruing the Monaco crash and his false-start (school-boy error!) – but looked so focussed in the later stages. Blew Massa away – utterly!

    3 – Kubica; someone get this man in a decent\top\fast car, pur-lease!!!! Racey and feisty on track, but cool as a cucumber off it.

    4 – Button; yes, in-front of Lewie\Lewie. Why? Well, firstly making a brave move to Macca (that just about everyone else considered a bad move – me included) and secondly, tell me where he put a foot wrong in a race? I saw no mistakes from him. Ok, he needs to work on Quali – but he knows that! – and Korea wasn’t his finest day. He could have stayed where he was (Brawn\Merc GP); he didn’t – that takes courage.

    5 – Hamilton; he never gives up either and frequently out-drives his car. But what was he doing in Monza!?!? Took the wind out of his sails when he was in a position to consolidate his championship position and never recovered from that – you could see it in his eyes after Singapore, that he knew he’d blown it. I thought we’d seen a slightly more considerate Hamilton this season (ie, aware that driving for points, at times, was crucial for his title aspirations) but it vanished at crunch (literally in Singapore) time.

    Honourable mentions to Koba-san, Webber and Rosberg… KK always puts a smile ‘pon my face; Mark had a chance but blew it in Korea and I still can’t get my head around him driving into the back of that Lotus in Valencia; Rosberg did well – better than I had originally expected – I’m anticipating Merc GP being in the mix next season with both their drivers.

    Cheers for the postings James – some really interesting, poignant and “leading” comments, that have created great debate amongst a knowledgeable and respectful bunch of posters.

    Here’s to 2011 :-)

  423. Marcin says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Hamilton
    3. Kubica
    4. Vettel
    5. Rosberg

  424. James Punt says:

    1. Vettel – made the best of a qualifying machine that was a class above.
    2. Webber – nearly pulled it off despite the team not getting behind him
    3. Rosberg – very consistent, got the most from his car
    4. Alonso – great come back late in the season. Germany was a blot on his copy book and the reason why he cannot be voted number 1.
    5. Kobayashi – for actually trying to overtake and showing that it can be done!

  425. Fausto Cunha says:

    1.Vettel
    2.Alonso
    3.Webber
    4.Kubica
    5.Rosberg

  426. DJ says:

    1.Alonso: Should have won the championship in the 5th best car over the season. Also blew away his team mate.

    2. Vettel: Youngest WDC ever but an absolute knob of the highest order.
    3. Webber stood up with limited team support.
    4. Hamilton – Some exhilarating driving and brushed aside former Champion. (stiff not to get No.3 drive.)
    5. Kubica. Performed better than the car warranted.

    1. Christos Pallis says:

      5th best car, OK so Redbull and Mclaren(sometimes) but don’t give me that 5th best car rubbish!

  427. nickw6666 says:

    Hi James,

    Congratulations on another year of great posts and for organising and hosting the Fans Forum. Superb!

    It’s always easy for a top five listing to become a list of each persons favourite 5 drivers, but here is my list based on the performances of the driver with the car / equipment / team at his disposal.

    1. Fernando Alonso
    2. Sebastian Vettel
    3. Lewis Hamilton
    4. Mark Webber
    5.

  428. Jonno says:

    1. Kubica – absolutely reinvented a team that had been down and out following the previous season. People say Alonso took over at Ferarri, but i’d say Kubica did an even better job at that at Renault.

    2. Vettel – He’s the Champion, and certainly the fastest all year. Had it not been for reliability he’s have walked the championship. Lets hope he works on his overtaking skills over the winter!

    3. Hamilton – Spectacular in the first half of the season, just a pity those two incidents at Monza and Singapore cost him dear. Monza was his fault, Singapore more 50:50. Mclaren must work on qualifying pace to give him a chance next year.

    4. Webber – Glad to see him not roll over and play second fiddle. Brilliant form in the middle of the season meant he dominated when he won. Poor last few races; it should have been his championship being in the fastest car and having the championship lead with 3 races left, but that crash in Korea, and poor qualifying in Abu Dabi meant he ultimately threw it away. Whined too much about being “unloved” at the end.

    5. Button – Solid first season at McLaren; made no major mistakes all season, and was unlucky with the bung at Moncaco and Vettel at Spa. Just lacked a touch of pace at times to his team mate, escpecially in qualifying. However, I expected Hamilton to dominate him, and he merely narrowly beat him, so good job. The McLaren fight in Instanbul just after the Red Bulls showed what not to do is probably my on-track moment of the season.

    Honourable mentions: Kovalainen – best of the new teams, and i’m glad for him after a poor two years at McLaren

    Kobayashi – Just fun to watch!

    Alonso – Too many mistakes in the early season cost him points, and 3 of his five victories were gifts (Bahrain, Germany and Korea). Excellent run of consistency with the second fastest car in the second half of the season meant he could, and would have nicked the championship but for a poor strategy call by the team at Abu Dabi. Petulance at Petrov at the end, and when the safety car went against him in mid-season all bumps him out of my Top 5.

    Rosberg – Probably had a good season, but we don’t really know. Destroyed Schumacher, but was that because he stepped up, or because Michael was struggling, and Nico performing as normal. How fast could the Mercedes have gone? It should be noted that by the end of the season, Michael was just starting to beat him in qualifying and the race. Will be interesting to see what happens next year.

    Prize for most expensive driver of the season:
    Liuzzi (how many Force India cars did he total? (admittedly not always his fault!)), closely followed by Petrov (mostly his fault!).

    Biggest Disappointment:
    Massa – Let Alonso destroy him mentally, with Germany the last straw. A much faster driver than he showed for most of this year, he should have been in the mix for victories, and helping Alonso take points of the Red Bulls, not fighting in the lower reaches of the top 10. Ferarri had the second fastest car, but were well behind McLaren in the constructors championship once the season had finished.

    Best Lap of the Season:
    Hulkenberg in Brazil. Simply stunning!

  429. James says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Kobayashi
    4. Kubica
    5. Webber

  430. Gavin says:

    1. Kubica – Pretty much extracted the most from a decent Renault at every race. Fast in all conditions, all sessions, has shown great racecraft – can’t remember a poor race.
    2. Hamilton – Fought for the title despite usually having only the 2nd/3rd best car. Clumsy Monza move stands out as only error in my view (think he gave Webber enough room in Singapore). Lost points in Spain, Hungary, Suzuka through no fault of his own.
    3. Vettel – Great speed throughout and brilliant final quarter saw Vettel a deserved WDC. Kept his nerve despite losing probable victories in Bahrain, Australia, Korea. Could be unstoppable next season.
    4. Alonso – Beat Massa easily and drove an almost immaculate 2nd half of season. Made way more errors than in 2005/06 though – jump start, illegal pass (GB), Spa spin, Monaco crash etc.
    5. Rosberg – Beat his illustrious team-mate quite comfortably and looked a threat on more than one occasion, especially in the rain (China and Korea). Could be dark horse for title in 2011 if Mercedes get it right over the winter.

  431. Pionir says:

    1. Lewis
    2. Alonso
    3. Vettel
    4. Button
    5. Webber

    Lewis – for doing the most with the least
    Alonso – for being consistent and always a threat, even when the car wasn’t up to it
    Vettel – Champion, but in the fastest car so comes in 3rd
    Button – not as outclassed as many predicted, showed moments of genius but not consistent enough
    Webber – in the fastest car and leading with 3 races to go, it was his title to lose, which he promptly did

  432. Gubstar says:

    Not going for the book, but here are my thoughts based on the whole grid and not just the championship contenders

    1) Hamilton – never a dull race for him
    2) Kobayashi – as above
    3) Kubica – consistantly outclassed the car he was driving
    4) Kovalienen – Was always at the head of the new teams and on many occasions was racing just behind the torro rosso’s.
    5) Senna – Considering how close to a wheelbarrow the HRT was his race performances were actually good. His start in Spain (before the crash) was spectacular to say the least jumping the amount of cars he did! And bar singapore he out qualified and raced his supposedly quicker and more experienced teamate!

    Also a mention must go to Nico Rosberg and Jenson Button who at the start of the year were predicted (by nearly all F1 journo’s)to be outclassed by their teamates.

    The recent tests in Abu Dhabi prove that the RB6 is an easy car to drive, so I have not included either of their drivers.

    And as for Alonso, well he is consistantly quick year in year out, and probably the best all round driver, but I cannot agree with his teams tactics.

    I am hopeful that now Red Bull have proved that you dont need team orders to win a title, or contest for the title (ala McLaren) now the team orders should be banned altogether. This way we will be guaranteed that 24 cars will be racing hard, rather than just 12.

  433. Chris says:

    1. Webber.
    2. Kubica.
    3. Rosberg.
    4. Alonso.
    5. Kobayashi.

    My top 5 of the year, disappointed Lewis and Jenson not in there.

  434. Kshitij Gopal says:

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Fernando Alonso
    3. Robert Kubica
    4. Nico Rosberg
    5. Kamui Kobayashi

  435. Jaco says:

    Easy.

    1. Alonso. Incredibly consistent, patient, fast and almost achieved what I would have considered to be the most impressive WDC of all time.
    2. Vettel. Blindingly fast and unstoppable in the last 5 races. Defied his bad luck and tons of pressure to become WDC.
    3. Hamilton. I’m not a fan but he was very consistent and fast throughout the year.
    4. Webber. Unstoppable at times and really patient for most parts of the year. Crucial mistakes and lack of speed at times pushes him down the order and cost him the WDC.
    5. Kubica. Proved that all the hype around him is justified. Pretty much always extracted everything possible from the car and then some. Very fast with no weaknesses. Will be interesting to see him go up against a really fast teammate.

    Honourable mention: Rosberg. Very fast, destroyed his teammate. Lack of podium finishes and a possible win pushes him out of the top 5.

  436. Lol says:

    Anyone also notice the Alonso fans now started obsessing about Vettel as much as they do with Hamilton?

    Funny bunch…

    1. James Allen says:

      Isn’t that what competition is all about?

  437. Jess says:

    Fernando Alonso without any doubt! Anyone who says otherwise is doesn’t know a thing….

    1. Andy C says:

      Is that in positions 1 2 3 4 and 5?

      1. Christos Pallis says:

        LMAO there are other drivers in F1 although you might not know it

      2. Andy C says:

        That is the main thing I’ve thought Fernando has lacked in f1. Omnipresence (being on all three podium steps at once)
        :-)

  438. zadrav says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Kubica
    4. Rosberg
    5. Kobayashi

    All of them clearly outperformed theirs team mates, and very often machinery.

  439. Jamie Bassett says:

    1. Rosberg
    2. Vettel
    3. Alonso
    4. Kobayashi
    5. Webber

  440. Robert says:

    1 Alonso
    2 Hamilton
    3 Button
    4 Vettel
    5 Webber

    Put any of my top 2 in a Red Bull and the championship would have been over with a few races to go. Kubica looked great but it is diificult to judge him against his teammate and I still remember his draw with Heidfeld. I can’t believe the omission of Hamilton from the majority of the posts.

    1. Christos Pallis says:

      I agree with your “top 2″ point

  441. Rene says:

    1. Vettel (Consistently fast)
    2. Webber (Consistently pushing)
    3. Alonso (Not a fan, but give credit where due)
    4. Rosberg (Consistently as fast as his car would allow him to be)
    5. Kubica (Often faster than his car should allow him to be)

  442. earnst says:

    1. exactly Alonso, he is in a different class

    2. Vettel, fastest of the yong boys

    3. Hamilton, no better than Vettel not so far away as well

    4. Kubica, but there are still unknowns

    5. Rosberg, same as Kubica

  443. Amarena says:

    My top Five:

    1- Alonso: he is simply the Best, never gives up!
    2- Kubica: really impressive
    3- Rosberg: (who’s Schumacher?)
    4- Kobayashi: fresh blood!
    5- Hamilton: spectacular

  444. Colin says:

    Hmm top 5 is a difficult one.

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kobayashi

    Alonso, dragged 3rd best car to near title, Vettel for his speed at the end, Webber with superb wins in Monaco, Hamilton did well but two bad errors at the end. Kobmeister because he was entertaining, daring and did a better job than his team mates. Could have been any order and Rosberg or Kubica deserve a mention too.

  445. Arek Seredyn says:

    1.Webber
    2.Kubica
    3.Vettel
    4.Alonso
    5.Hamilton

  446. elbowchris says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Button

    It’s hard to argue with points over 19 races.

  447. Arek Seredyn says:

    On the second thought I have to say
    1.Webber
    2.Kubica
    3.Vettel
    4.Alonso
    5.Rosberg

    The young german outperformed 7 times WC. Was consistent and singlehanndedly places Merc on 4th in the championship

  448. JPR says:

    1. Webber (He almost win the WDC fighting also his own team)

    2. Alonso (Brought the 3rd best car and fought with the best)

    3. Vettel (He was the fastest …with the fastest car of course)

    4. Hamilton (he’s a top fighter but sometimes he losses his mind)

    5. Kubica (He’s able to win the WDC, only needs a good car)

  449. Hashim Ul-Hassan says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Hamilton
    3. Vettel
    4. Kubica
    5. Webber

  450. zadrav says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Kubica
    4. Rosberg
    5. Kobayashi

    All of them clearly outperformed team mates, and fully utilized (Vettel) or very often outperformed machinery (rest of the list).

  451. saturn v says:

    1. Hamilton – Fast and near flawless in sub-par car up until Monza. A bit ragged in the las few races but still brought in points commensurate with cars performance.
    2. Alonso – On the same level as Hamilton but early season mistakes mark him down slightly. Jump start in China and qualifying crash in Monaco were only rescued through lucky safety car deployment.
    3. Vettel – Fast whilst handicapped by errors and poor reliability compared to team mate. But I still can’t get away from the thought that if Alonso and Hamilton were driving the RB6 they’d have sewn up the title weeks ago.
    4. Rosberg
    5. Kubica – Hard to choose betweeen these two. They both showed their mettle in sub-par cars. Rosberg troubled the leaders more but was cursed by rotten luck.

    Webber misses out because of too many errors.

  452. DMyers says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Webber
    3. Vettel
    4. Rosberg
    5. Kobayashi

  453. Joe says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Hamilton
    4. Webber
    5. Button

  454. kostre says:

    hi
    I posted yesterday but i can’t find it …???
    kubica
    vettel
    alonso
    hamilton
    rosberg
    i hope it will be visible.

  455. Danny says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kubica

  456. Christopher Snowdon says:

    1) Vettel (champion)
    2) Kubica (would like to havbe made him top)
    3) Alonso
    4) Hulkenburg (Williams will rue this one getting away)
    5) Hamilton (did very well to stay in contention)

    Just because I want to mention them: -
    6)Webber
    7)Button
    8)Sutil (early season form was good)
    9)Kobayashi
    10)Alguersuari

    New teams –

    Bruno Senna – (just to type his surname – wow)

    Worst performers

    Petrov
    Luizzi

    Inbetween

    Massa – tough one, didn’t justify a place in the top drivers, but his situation means he can’t be put in the worst performers either.

  457. Chris says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Webber
    3. Alonso
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kubica

  458. Joel says:

    1- Alonso
    2- Vettel
    3- Hamilton
    4- Webber
    5- Rosberg

  459. C Lin says:

    Driver of the season – Vettel.

  460. tomek says:

    1. S. Vettel
    2. F. Alonso
    3. L. Hamilton
    4. R. Kubica
    5. M. Webber

  461. Rungs says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kubica

  462. Andrew Burley says:

    1 Vettel
    2 Alonso
    3 Kubica
    4 Rosberg
    5 Kobayashi

    The reasoning is simple Vettel won the championship and would have won by a street if he hadn’t had reliability issues with the car. He had more poles than anyone and was undeniably the fastest driver. He did make mistakes taking his team mate out and Button at Spa and his overtaking ability is dubious, but he is youngest WDC and did a phenomenal job in last six races. He deserved his title and I can see him going on to win many more if Red Bull can take their technological lead into next year, tho that may be questionable with the amount of development they put into this years car.

    Alonso, joined a new team, didn’t have the fastest car, but managed to ring every last ounce of performance from the car and apart from a strategy mistake by his team would have been an undeserved WDC this year. Had some bad luck and whilst I am in the ABA and ABS camps I concede that he showed has class, and must be amongst the favorites for 2011.

    Kubica’s performance this year has been immense, and he has proved a thorn in the sides of all the main teams drivers, and again has shown great potential if he can only have a car that matches his ability. He has qualified well all season and delivered many good race finishes in a car that should be considered midfield at best.

    Rosberg outperformed Schummi over the season again got the best from his car and shows great potential. Could be in with a shout next year if Mercedes can deliver a capable machine as he has the beating of his team mate.

    Kobayashi who must be the love child of Keke Rosberg simply because he brings excitement and unpredictability to races and again maximized performance of what was far from being a good Sauber.

    Others with notable mentions would b eRubens for his shear enthusiasm, and for beating the stigs time on Top Gear, and for finding the sense of humor he lost the previous year. Top man, and long may he continue.

    Lastly my personal favorite driver Jenson Button for putting up a good defense of his title, and for his early season form. He needs to improve his qualifying pace to give himself a chance next season, and hopefully McLaren can do a better job of providng him and Lewis with a car that there or thereabouts. They have struggled this season again. They need to make sure that next season they pull their socks up.

    I have not added Lewis into this list because I think he lost his way this year, he has missed the calming influence of his father at races, and has made some stupid mistakes that cost him his chance of scoring many more points. I have to say though that he does seem to have formed a good relationship with Jenson, and his started to adapt his driving style to better suit the new rules.

    Lets just hope that next season exceeds this one as this did the previous one, and may the best driver / team win, preferably one that allows both drivers to race each other fairly.

  463. M says:

    1. Webber
    2. Hamilton
    3. Kobayashi
    4. Kubica
    5. Rosberg

  464. MCDAYC says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Hamilton
    3. Rosberg
    4. Alonso
    5. Kubica

  465. Munaf says:

    Trying to ignore the valid contributions of my fellow readers here is my top 5.

    5.Alonso,
    would have ranked higher, but the Petrov incident was unfortunate
    4.Webber,
    unfortunately too many bottled it moments
    3.Hamilton,
    read Webber
    2.Kobayashi,
    along with the other top rookies (Petrov and Hulkenberg) made mistakes, but excited me the most
    1. Vettel,
    most of his mistakes not his fault. Two that were maybe one more than the allowed per season, but he’s still getting there.

    1. Munaf says:

      and umm i forgot Kubica

      5.alonso
      4.webber
      3.hamilton
      2.kubica
      1.vettel

  466. Arcturis says:

    1. Vettel – Superb driving all year
    2. Alonso – the most competitive driver in the field?
    3. Webber – coulda shoulda but now never will be
    4. Hamilton – wrung everything out of an underperfoming car but tried too hard
    5. Rosberg – outperformed MSC – consistent speed in a poor car

  467. Aaron says:

    1. Robert Kubica
    2. Mark Webber
    3. Nico Rosberg
    4. Fernando Alonso
    5. Sebastian Vettel

    with honorable mentions to Hamilton, Button and Kobayashi

  468. William says:

    My top five in descending order:

    1. Alonso (Driver of the season)
    2. Kubica
    3. Vettel
    4. Webber
    4. Rosberg

  469. Momo says:

    1. Kubica

    2. Kobayashi

    3. Vettel

    4. Rosberg

    5. Alonso

  470. Chris Pike says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Kubica
    5. Kobayashi

  471. carol says:

    1.Webber
    2.Vettel
    3.Hamilton
    4.Alonso
    5.Rosberg

  472. KidrA says:

    1. S.Vettel
    2. R.Kubica
    3. F.Alonso
    4. M.Webber
    5. L.Hamilton

  473. Ads21 says:

    1. Hamilton
    2. Alonso
    3. Kubica
    4. Vettel
    5. Rosberg

  474. Markos says:

    My choice:

    1. Rob Kubica
    2. Lewis Hamilton
    3. Seb Vettel
    4. Fernando Alonso
    5. Mark Webber

  475. Andrew Derlien says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Kubica
    5. Button

  476. Trev Smith says:

    1. Vettel
    2.Webber
    3. Alonso
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kubica

  477. M.M. says:

    1.Robert Kubica – my driver of 2010 season. Robert is a complete driver (F1 and WRC), he has leadership qualities, hard working attitude, and can work with any teammate (Alonso and Hamilton included), he is fair but hard driver that makes almost no mistakes. He showed his talent while driving for BMW but whatever the reason (my personal opinion that he was treated in BMW the same way as Mark is treated in Red Bull) his full potential was not shown and many accused him that he had complained too much. When Robert signed contract with Renault the common opinion was that he made mistake, that after “crash gate” this team is finished and just waiting for the best way to leave the sport. Robert with his attitude and fantastic drives made Renault the most improved team and many times the most talked team in positive way.

    2.Sebastian Vettel – because he won WDC

    3.Lewis Hamilton – for his fantastic drives

    4.Nico Rosberg – for stopping Schumacher making him number 2 driver

    5.Mark Weber – for trying his best to go against Red Bull establishment

  478. kev says:

    1 Alonso
    2 Hamilton
    3 Rosberg
    4 Vettel
    5 Kubica/Button

  479. Gavin says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Hamilton
    3. Vettel
    4. Alonso
    5. Rosberg

  480. Peter says:

    1 – Sebastian Vettel
    2 – Fernando Alonso
    3 – Lewis Hamilton
    4 – Mark Webber
    5 – Nico Rosberg

  481. Ben says:

    My top 5 drivers

    1. Hamilton
    2. Vettel
    3. Alonso
    4. Button
    5. Kubica

    Hamilton is top of my list because he always managed to get the maximum out of his car in virtually every race, sometimes without reward as we saw in Spain and Hungary. However, his title challenge fell apart after his fatal mistake in Italy. He was unlucky to lose out in a racing incident in Singapore and in Japan he couldn’t find a working gearbox. After that, the World Championship looked to have gotten away from him once again. Still, in what appeared to be the 3rd fastest car overall, fighting for the title was a massive achievement in itself for Hamilton.

    Sebastian Vettel had endured a torrid season. He’d made mistakes, been beaten by his team mate and only taken two wins from nine pole positions, with two others lost to car problems. After all those problems, he still found himself in title contention. His dominance of the final races was stunning – Without his engine failure in Korea, he’d have taken all 100 points. Seb definitely showed weaknesses in his racecraft and ran things close considering he had the best car, but his raw pace, qualifying precision and ability to take the wins when it mattered most make him a deserving World Champion.

    It’s very true that Alonso was set to win the World Championship without the best car until a strategical error and failure to pass Petrov undid all the good work. Credit must be given to him for his fine run of form in the second half of the season that put him on the cusp of his 3rd title. His victory in Singapore where he held off Vettel’s faster Red Bull from start to finish was massively impressive. But the 2010 World Championship was contested over 19 races and Alonso’s early mistakes cost him dear. Did he put too much pressure on himself to succeed for his team? Either way, his errors were very uncharacteristic and are why he is placed below Vettel and Hamilton.

    Fourth place goes to my personal favourite driver, Jenson Button, who had a strong season in much the same way as his team mate Lewis Hamilton. He may not have been able to match Hamilton on pure pace, but his consistent approach as well as two intelligent victories in Australia and China kept him well in title contention. His most impressive race came in Italy where he held the Ferrari’s at bay, only to miss out on victory thanks to a poor pit stop. However, his poor form in Qualifying and his setup issues contributed to him trailing his other rivals as the final races approached, and those issues push him down to fourth place.

    The final spot in my Top 5 list is awarded to Robert Kubica, who was particularly impressive at the so-called driver’s circuits in Monaco, Belgium and Japan. He was strong and consistent throughout, even exceeding that in some races, most notably in Australia where he spent the whole race fending off faster cars to finish 2nd. Kubica takes 5th place because he had a strong season in an upper midfield team, but he may have been flattered by a weak team mate and didn’t have the same pressure as the title contenders. Still, it would be exciting to see him in a front running car.

  482. Joanna says:

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Fernando Alonso
    3. Robert Kubica
    4. Lewis Hamilton
    5. Mark Webber

  483. Ysiu says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Vettel
    3. Rosberg
    4. Webber
    5. Alonso

  484. phil says:

    1. Vettel

    2. Alonso

    3. Webber

    4. Kubica

    5. Rosberg

  485. S-D says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Hamilton
    3. Vettel
    4. Alonso
    5. Webber

  486. Chris Bird says:

    1 Vettel
    2 Alonso
    3 Webber
    4 Hamiliton
    5 Button

  487. anupam says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kobayashi

  488. John Player says:

    1)Rosberg
    2)Kubica
    3)big gap
    4)Webber
    5)Button and Hamilton(tie)

    1. Pawel says:

      Haha, Big Gap is it Schumi?

      1. John Player says:

        “big gap” means that there was no worthy candidate for third, and Kubica was more than one step better than Webber. Actually it should be:
        1)nobody
        2)Rosberg
        3)Kubica
        4)big gap
        5)Webber, Button, Hamilton

        But “nobody” cant be a driver of the season, so I disqualified this option,and moved everybody up a place.

    2. Mario says:

      Excellent!

  489. Vivek Shetty says:

    1. Webber
    2. Alonso
    3. Hamilton
    4. Vettel
    5. Rosberg

    Webber because he was up against a very fast team mate. On a single lap race, Vettel will easily kick Webber’s ass, which explains his pole positions. And even though I feel Vettel has slight better racecraft than Webber, he had reliability issues & he made a few mistakes. I think Webber was more consistent of the two. He produced the best results quite a few times, and when that wouldn’t be possible he would be the second best. And not to forget this was a man, who not very long time ago had a broken back & leg.

    Alonso because of his ability to drive the third best car & still lead the championship till the last race. Can’t deny his racecraft. Equally bad off track, throwing his toys of the pram. He complained of spectators being robbed of a proper race in Valencia when Lewis was penalized after 20 odd laps, which effectively made no loss to Lewis. But when Massa moved over for him, he didn’t think the spectators were robbed of anything.

    Hamilton simply because of his racecraft. This guy is just superb. Clearly the MP4-25 was a snail as compared to the RBR, though much closer to Ferrari. And there were quite a few occasions where Hamilton qualified ahead of Alonso. (Canada, Spa, Japan-penalty, Abu Dhabi to name a few). I rate him as the best driver on the grid.

    Vettel because of his performances when everything went right. And when that happened he was in a league of his own. No one to touch him, not even his team mate with an equivalent car. I want to see more of him before I rate him higher.

    Rosberg, for the job he has done this entire year. And I am not talking about qualifying & finishing ahead of Michael. If you look only at him, you will realise that given the car Merecedes had he was simply superb in it. I rate him also very highly on racecraft. If anyone on this grid is a sure shot future WDC, I think its this guy. Finishing ahead of your team mate (rookie or seven time world champion) by more than half the points & given the number of top 6 places he was fantastic.

  490. Cort says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kubica

    Why Alonso ahead of Vettel? Because his Ferrari was awful for much of the season yet he still missed the WDC only due to a catastrophic decision on the pitwall.

  491. Andrew L says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Hamilton
    3. Vettel
    4. Alonso
    5. Webber

  492. Oliver Langford says:

    1) Kubcia
    2) Vettel
    3) Rosberg
    4) Webber
    5) Alonso

  493. Eric says:

    1. Vettel – the fastest man who would have had it wrapped up a while ago without the mechanical faults the other drivers didn’t get.

    2. Kubica – Out-drove the Renault all season.

    3. Alonso – Similarly out-drove the Ferrari and put in some sublime drives. However, made too many driver errors to rank him above Kubica.

    4. Webber – Raised his game significantly and was doing incredibly well until the smallest mistake in Korea.

    4. Hamilton – Out-drove the McLaren and had some fantastic wins and overtaking manoeuvres.

  494. CHIUNDA says:

    1. Lewis – out performed third best car, mistakes; still had a shot at WDC and still beat his less mistake prone WDC team mate in the same car
    2. Webber – delivered as expected but was stopped by the team
    3. Vettel – won the championship; you have to respect that
    4. Nico Rosberg – Out performed 7 time WDC in the same car
    5. Alonso – still punching below his weight but what a weight! Fit for the “keep your friends close but your enemies closer” philosophy. You can never count his brute force approach from a championship race.

  495. Richard D says:

    1. Vettel – Youngest champion and still won after reliability problems. Led the most laps. Yes he doesn’t seem to pass very cleanly sometimes but race craft may come when he isn’t in the car of the field.
    2. Kubica – Constantly better than his machinery (and teammate).
    3. Alonso – Not a great start (excluding Bahrain) but then relentless and with his ‘five podiums’ talk almost seemed destined for the title (by 7 points…)
    4. Hamilton – I would have put him first if the championship had ended at Spa. So hard to decide if he was better than Alonso… Almost had the opposite season (good to bad instead of bad to good) to his Spanish pal. I’ll put Alonso ahead simply for the race (Malaysia?) where he almost nursed a sick car home.
    5. Webber – Did very well at most races but lacked the tenth Vettel seemed to have. Sometimes scrappy but other times forceful and brilliant. Wore the underdog tag too strongly at the final races.

    Honourable mentions to Kobayashi, Rosberg and Kovalainen.

  496. Laura T says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Hamilton
    3. Vettel
    4. Kubica
    5. Webber

  497. dulait says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Rosberg

  498. Brujah says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Kubica
    3. Alonso
    4. Rosberg
    5. Kobayashi

  499. brettgraham says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kubica

  500. DB says:

    1. Webber
    2. Vettel
    3. Kubica
    4. Kobayashi
    5. Rosberg

  501. Kim Holland says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettle
    3. Hamilton
    4. Nico Rosberg
    5. Kubica

    1. Kim Holland says:

      1. Alonso, better performance with slower car, experience and best driving/developing abilities
      2. Vettle, where he needed to be in the end
      3. Hamilton, more consistent performance than Webber, & only 2 point spread despite inferior car to Webbers’ Red Bull
      4. Nico Rosberg, made the most of his situation
      5. Kubica, within 8 points of Massa’s Ferrari

      Webber had one of the two fastest cars but made mistakes at critical junctures in the season. He let the pressure into his head.

  502. Arnau F. says:

    1.Hamilton
    2.Kubica
    3.Rosberg
    4.Button
    5.Alonso

  503. Marek says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Kubica
    3. Hamilton
    4. Webber
    5. Alonso

  504. Adam Tate says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Hamilton
    3. Kobayashi
    4. Webber
    5. Button

    Vettel could have truly dominated the season and deserves the number 1 spot. Hamilton, despite only having the 3rd fastest car and more retirements than the other top drivers still put himself in contention for the championship all the way to Yas Marina and drove a superb race once he got there. Kobayashi gave us the most exciting display of overtaking all season at Suzuka. He has a fearless talent and isn’t afraid to take on anyone, as evidenced by his pass on Alonso earlier this year. Mark drove a great season and during the weeks of Monaco and Spain was simply on another level to everyone, such was his determination. Button has been undervalued this year, he has made excellent decisions and though his mid-season was somewhat lacking he led more laps this year than anyone but the Red Bull boys which says multitudes about his talent.

  505. Lin Morris says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Webber
    3. Alonso
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kobayashi – one to watch

  506. koompel says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Webber
    3. kubica
    4. Vettel
    5. Hamilton

  507. Brendan says:

    5. Lewis Hamilton
    4. Robert Kubica
    3. Mark Webber
    2. Fernando Alonso
    1. Sebastian Vettel

  508. My Tuppence... says:

    1. Hamilton – the all round package. Crucially he schooled RBR in Istanbul in how to race wheel to wheel with your team mate even with the benefit of team orders *cough* ‘save fuel’ *splutter* :D

    2. Vettel – he may be the champ but he arguably had the advantage of the better car. Too many questions asked of him when he’s not on pole/leading the race.

    3. Webber – a formidable foe for Vettel and even RBR. Held his head up high when he questions the team. Vettel was better driver, arguably the quickest amongst the current F1 field.

    4. Kubica – agains shown his talent that he deserves to be in an apex team challenging for the WDC.

    5. Alonso – stolen a piece of Jimmie Johnson’s (multiple NASCAR Sprint Cup champ) mojo and peaked at the right moment which is why he easily trumps Button, even though by his standards Alonso’s form was disappointingly and embarrassingly shambolic in the first of the year.

    Hopefully, my top 5 matches James Allen’s!

  509. MattNZ says:

    1) Kubica
    2) Kobayashi
    3) Alonso
    4) Webber
    5) Button

    Kubica – outperformed the Renault car and his team mate by an incredible margin. Reminded me of Schumacher circa 96/97 when the man could overcome the short comings in the machine. One day this guy will get in a competitive car and the rest of the contenders had better watch out.

    Kobayashi – Too many great and entertaining drives to mention in a car that should have been nowhere. How many times did Brundle and co have to mention Kobayashi’s name in the same sentence as Button/Hamilton/Webber/Vettel etc because he was in the thick of it. Another guy that I hope gets are car worthy of him.

    Alonso – I’m not a fan (Personally I wish Webber or Button had won the championship), but his driving impressed me this year (a lot more than his attitude). Let’s not forget he was in a new team, new car, up against an established team mate, and on the back foot against the Red Bull, McLaren and Mercedes (Brawn) teams which all came off relatively stronger 2009 season. Despite this he kept a dog of a Ferrari in the championship for 2/3s of the season when it shouldn’t have been there, then really stepped up to the plate when the Ferrari guys got the car sorted. And while I’m highly anti what happened at Hockenheim, Alonso had Massa well and truly beaten this year.

    Webber – Love the Aussie grit. He’s not the “chosen one” at Red Bull. He knew it, and we all knew it after boy-wonder was allowed to take his toys at Silverstone after breaking his own. Despite not feeling the love, Mark has just got on with it and shown Red Bull and the world what he’s made of. For comparison, look at the crumbling wilting Massa faced with a similar situation.

    Button – Everyone thought Jenson was going to get destroyed by Lewis this year. But Jenson left his championship winning team do go into the environment that Fernando Alonso thought was too tough for him. And while Lewis has usually had the edge for out and out raw pace, Jenson has showed he isn’t there just to make up the numbers. If not for Vettel punting Jenson off at Spa – who knows what might have been in the championship…

  510. Michael Prestia says:

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Webber
    Kubica
    Hamilton

  511. shuyee says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Webber
    3. Alonso
    4. Kubica
    5. Rosberg

  512. Prakash says:

    1. Webber
    2. Alonso
    3. Rosberg
    4. Vettel
    5. Hamilton

  513. sanjeev says:

    1.- Vettel
    2.- Alonso
    3.- Kubica
    4.- Webber
    5.- Hamilton

  514. Lem says:

    1. HAMILTON
    2. ALONSO
    3. WEBBER
    4. VETTEL
    5. KOBAYASHI

  515. Jomar says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Hamilton
    4. Webber
    5. Kobayashi

  516. Mat says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Alonso
    3. Hamilton
    4. Rosberg
    5. Vettel

  517. Lucas says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Hamilton
    3. Alonso
    4. Webber
    5. Rosberg

    no credit for vettel, all he did is quali and loosing p1 70% of the time. pure luck to win wdc.

  518. zack says:

    1.vettel 2.alonso 3.hamilton 4.button 5.webber

  519. Luke A says:

    James, here are myn:-

    5. Koboyashi – I think he is the biggest revelation in F1 since Hamilton and I can’t wait to hopefully see him in a top team soon.

    4. Kubica – Performed very strongly in his car although for the first 3/4 of the season but then faded towards the end, but made up for it with a fantastic drive in Abu Dhabi.

    3. Vettel – Was very unlucky, but also made a few big errors and he did have a car that was on several occasions, close to a second a lap faster than his rivals.

    2. Alonso – Made many uncharacteristic errors in the first half of the season, but had a better second half (when it counts) than anyone and should have won the title if it wasn’t for a strategy error in Abu Dhabi.

    1. Hamilton – Quite a few people, fans and journalists alike, seem to have forgot how up to and including Spa, Hamilton made not a single error and was driving unbelievably, completely out-performing his car and many said, driving better than he ever had. He made 1 or 2 errors from then on in, but if you pan out the whole season, comparing his errors with others, whilst also looking at how close he came to winning the WDC with on average the 3rd fastest car, I think he did pretty remarkably well.

    ps. Some might find it strange I’ve excluded Webber, but quite frankly, I think him and Vettel had such an advantage with their cars and whereas Vettel lost a lot of points through mechanical failures, Webber didn’t really lose many at all and still came up short. I think he did drive very well but I think both the Red Bull drivers have got a little too much credit and maybe they should be judged when next year they hopefully have a car that isn’t miles ahead. It is fair enough to credit Alonso, but just because he has had a strong finish to the season and Hamilton has made a couple of errors, it is necessary to look at the season as a whole and it is frustrating to see how suddenly many people are turning around and saying Alonso was amazing and Hamilton was disappointing. Even Sir. Stirling Moss did this in his piece for the BBC. Hamilton only finished 12 points behind Alonso, and in last years scoring system he would have finished 1 point behind – when his car was on average slower than Alonso’s and he had many more DNF’s (2 of which were big point loses through car failure).

  520. J. Singh says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Kubica
    5. Rosberg
    6. Hamilton

  521. diz says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Rosberg
    3. Alonso
    4. Vettel
    5. Kobayashi

  522. Lewiswebbhead says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Webber
    3. ALonso
    4. Hamilton
    5. Rosberg

  523. Pawel says:

    5. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    3. Vettel
    2. Kubica
    1. Alonso

    1. Pawel says:

      Sorry, Let me make some make up:
      5. Webber
      4. Hamilton
      3. Kubica
      2. Vettel
      1. Alonso

  524. Alex says:

    1. Webber
    2. Alonso
    3. Kubica
    4. Rosberg
    5. Kobayashi

    Then again, for this year you’d need at least a top ten to fit in all the great drivers. And the guys working for the new teams need a massive shout out as this year would be totally painful for any top tier driver to go through. In summary, well done FIA and well done Formula 1 for proving why it this is the best sport in the world.

  525. Lew says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Hamilton
    4. Rosberg
    5. Kubica

  526. Helen Smith says:

    1. Alonson
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kubica

  527. Christos Pallis says:

    1. Vettel – champion
    2. Alonso – champions drive
    3. Hamilton – better than his car deserved
    4. Webber – took the fight to the last race
    5. Kubica – future champoin who needs a better car

    5th position is the difficult one for me, I’d say Kubica edges out Rosberg, Button and Kobayashi but only just. Rosberg has had a very quiet but hugely succesful season in a poor car. Button did a good job in a car he struggled to balance to his liking and kept hamilton honnest. Kobayashi, what a legend gotta love the boy.

    I’d leave every driver in the top five teams where they are except put Kobayashi in alongside Kubica at Renault, get rid of Vitaly “that armco looks lonley” Petrov! That would be an awesome prospect.

    Keep up the great work James, love the site:)

  528. Eoin Keane says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Kubica
    3. Alonso
    4. Webber
    5. Hamilton

  529. rB says:

    1.Lewis Hamilton
    2.Robert Kubica
    3.Sebastian Vettel
    4.Fernando Alonso
    5.Nick Heidfeld

  530. Tom says:

    1.Hamilton
    2.Webber
    3.Button
    4.Vettel
    5.Rosberg

  531. Mr Anderson says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Webber
    3. Vettel
    4. Rosberg
    5. Kubica

  532. Joseph Simmons says:

    2010 top ten drivers:
    1. Vettel – fastest driver in the fastest car
    2. Alonso – optimal performance in the second best car.
    3. Webber – gritty driver with strong will, who lost out due his qualifying efforts.
    4. Hamilton – the ultimate racer, who can deliver results in a subpar car.
    5. Button – strong first half of the season, but faded with the car in the second half.
    6. Kubica – really a pleasant surprise with consistency through the year.
    7. Kobayashi – Mr. Excitement in 2010; took advantage of his situation.
    8. Rosberg – proved a number 1 team driver.
    9. Barrichello – kept the wheels on the Williams efforts.
    10. Massa – never recovered from the Alonso blitz.

  533. Mario says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Webber
    3. Alonso
    4. Rosberg
    5. Kubica

  534. Andrew says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Kubica
    5. Hamilton

  535. Tiffany Price says:

    1. Hamilton:
    Out drove his car by a long way, trounced his team mate, 5 fastest laps in races, but most importantly made the 2010 season exciting and worth watching!

    2. Vettle:
    10 pole positions and 2010 world champion.

    3. Alonso:
    As much as I hate him, credit where credit’s due – his second half of the season was unbelievable, especially when everyone had written him off by Silverstone. Awful driver for team spirit though…

    4. Webber:
    Some good races and stayed close to Vettle the whole season. Championship could have been his with more fighting spirit and less whinging.

    5. Kobayashi:
    For pure entertainment value.

  536. David says:

    Top 5:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Hamilton
    4. Kubica
    5. Webber

  537. Toby Bushby says:

    1. Sebastien Vettel
    2. Mark Webber
    3. Lewis Hamilton
    4. Robert Kubica
    5. Nico Rosberg

  538. Marybeth says:

    Mark Webber is my driver of the year, because…he is the people’s/my champion! :)
    I greatly admire the way he has been able to cope with & overcome what he has had to handle this year & rise above it; including this past Sunday & Monday. I think that the year has strengthened him & given more confidence to come back stronger next year.

  539. Rich says:

    I think too much is being made of the drivers making mistakes this season. I think that these errors have been forced by the brilliance of the other competitors at various stages and the level of competition this year generally.

    The season was so good because the nest guys were in the best cars (with the exception of my boy Robert Kubica)

    Here are my top five:

    1. Vettel – he was the quickest guy all year, yes he left it late to take the championship lead but mechanical problems cost him 3 certain wins that would have had the title wrapped up by Korea. As it was he had to win the last two races for it instead. Make no mistake, Mark Webber is a class act; throughout his career, one of the guys consistently outperforming his machinery, always ahead of his team mate and mustard in qualifing. Anyone who can outqualify Mark Webber 13-6 over a season in the same car is a superstar!

    2. Hamilton – Cast your minds back to mid July, Lewis had the largest gap at the top of the pile of anyone all season, despite never really having the fastest car. Without the bad mistake at Monza he would have been world champion. Lewis seems to get closer to Alonso’s level as each year passes and had the legs on Button all season.

    3. Alonso – Fernando is the best driver in f1 at present, of that there can be no doubt, and when he wins his third crown at Ferrari he will enter the pantheon of all-time greats. His race weekend at Singapore underlined what a phonomenon he is. I don’t think any of the other four title contenders could have done what he did to win that Grand Prix. But, with the whole team behind him, and his relentless brilliance in the latter half of the season, he didn’t have enough to win the title and it was driving errors at China, Monaco, Silverstone and Belgium that cost him. These errors serve to take the shine off the season for this otherwise most consistent of performers.

    4. Webber – Some fantastic drives this year from Mark, but really he never had a proper answer for Vettel’s ultimate pace. He had a lot of good fortune this year, and given his appalling luck up to this point in his career it was overdue. One can’t help thinking, however that his worst luck of all was to have the first quick car of his career but have Vettel alongside him.

    5. Rosberg – another guy who kept a highly rated team mate in his pocket all year. Everyone concentrates on how poor Schumacher has been by his lofty standards, not enough people give Nico credit for the stellar job he has done this season. Three podiums is a fantastic return in that car and to beat the (IMO more talented) Kubica over a season is an achievement.

    Honourable mentons to Button, Kubica, Barrichello, Cowboyashi (Suzuka alone almost had him in the top 5!) and Alguersuari- who came on a lot this year.

  540. Matt says:

    Very hard to choose, but in descending order:

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Rosberg

    With honourable mentions to Barrichello, Kubica, The Hulk and Button.

  541. Estophile says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Vettel
    3. Webber
    4. Alonso
    5. Hamilton

    I’d like to get Rosberg and Kobayashi in there as well, but hey, the man said top five, so five it is.

  542. Matt B says:

    This has been a very hard to choose, but here goes:

    1.Alonso

    2.Vettel

    3.Webber

    4. Hamilton

    5. Kubica

  543. Matthew Arkle says:

    1. Hamilton
    2. Alonso
    3. Vettel
    4. Kubica
    5. Rosberg

  544. Henrik says:

    Ugh, massively difficult… Five drivers are very hard to separate, but I’ll try to put them in some kind of order…

    1. Hamilton. 2/3 of the season was brilliant, driver of the year. Then came Monza… In Singapore he was unlucky, but then he made mistakes in Korea and Brazil, letting Alonso through. Despite slight late-season drop-off finished mere 16 points behind Vettel in what was probably the third best car over a full season. Was faster than Button almost all season (except Monza). Also his McLaren has worse reliability than Alonso’s Ferrari.

    2. Alonso. He was a bit error-prone in the beginning of the season, but what impressed me, was his great damage limitation skills. In Australia, China and Monaco – despite blunders – he managed to fight back to a solid position. Something that for instance Vettel and especially Webber are not that capable of and may completely throw it away, when things start going wrong for them. The second half of the season was nothing short of amazing for Alonso, with the exception of the whole horrible Spa weekend. Took maximum from the Ferrari everywhere, either by winning against odds at Singapore, or simply getting maximum damage limitation points behind Red Bull.s Very close with Hamilton, but put him behind due to having made probably a couple of more mistakes over the full season. Was faster than Massa almost all season (except Turkey and another odd race here and there).

    3. Kubica. Very consistent and no significant driver errors either and only on an odd single occasion got beaten by Petrov. I think his first half of the season was especially brilliant. In the second half perhaps a couple of races could have gone slightly better (recall Spa’s pitstop, where he lost out to Webber) – overall a season like 2008, when he also was very much among the best performers of the year. Put him behind Top2 due to lack of championship battle pressure.

    4. Rosberg. Also very consistent and outraced Schumacher almost on a consistent basis. Had some unluck with loose wheels (Hungary, Japan) and sadly was collected in Korea, where he could have easily finished on the podium. But despite all of that only two points behind Massa by the end.

    5. Vettel. World Champion, but in this tough competition had to put him below others. 2/3 of the season was quite difficult. Webber was a great rival, against who he seemed to struggle in team-mate battle in one period of the season, getting outpaced in Spain, Monaco and looked like Canada as well. Vettel is extremely fast, probably among the fastest, but the main problem is that compared to the four above he rarely showed any great overtaking skills. He seemed to mature during the season though and since Monza drove like a real champion, making up the whole points deficit even despite engine failure in Korea. A “green champion” to put it that way, but it was a huge character building season and WDC will only spure more confidence into him for the future.

    Honorable mentions to Button and Barrichello, who could also be easily included in Top5, but had to leave them out this time.

  545. simon b says:

    Kubica
    Alonso
    Vettel
    Webber
    Kovalinon

  546. bsoares says:

    Vetel
    Alonso
    Hamilton
    Webber
    Button

  547. Red-Allen says:

    1. S. Vettel
    2. L. Hamilton
    3. F. Alonso
    4. M. Webber
    5. K. Kobayashi.

    thank you James -:)

  548. Slawek says:

    1. HAMILTON
    2. KUBICA
    3. ALONSO
    4. ROSBERG
    5. KOBAYASHI
    fOR ME ITS ACTUALLY HARD TOBELIEVE THAT HAM KUB AND BRITNEY CAME TO F1 TOGETHER AND ALL ARE SO GOOD. ITS ODD – B4 YOU HAD TO WAIT FOR A GOOD DRIVER TO SHOW UP FOR A WHILE

  549. crash says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Kubica
    5. Hamilton

  550. VicWeir says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Webber
    3. Vettel
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kubica

  551. Sumanth Kamath says:

    My top 5 in descending order-

    1. Alonso- With possibly the third fastest car for most part of the season, he took the bulls to the wire before losing out to strategy. Amazing race craft and grit i would say. A realistic position of the car is shown by Felipe massas position.

    2. Kubica- Was punching above his weight most of the time and actually made the renault car look good in some races.

    3. Vettel- Is here only for sheer pace. Hes probably the fastest of the top runners, but he has yet to show the maturity of a true champion. Title or not, with the fastest car on the grid for the entire season, with ten poles out of 19, it took him the last race of the season and some clumsy pitwall work from Ferrari to win the title.

    4. Mark webber- Has always had the speed, but not the consistency. He could have won this title, but i think he choked. Its the only reason i think he is fourth here. Mental strength does not complement his driving talent.

    5. Kobayashi- He has shown surprising maturity in developing into a racing driver. He is exciting to watch, is not afraid to try new things and with a little bit of experience, he can actually be in the top 5 if he can get his hands on a good drive.

  552. Steve W says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Hamilton
    3. Alonso
    4. Vettel
    5. Webber

  553. Evan says:

    1.Vettel
    2.Alonso
    3.Webber
    4.Hamilton
    5.Kubica

  554. WuerTeh says:

    1. Kubica – perfection, bravery, intelligence, charisma
    2. Hamilton – the will to win, fortitude, tenacity, aggressiveness
    3. Webber – experience, consistency, emotional stability
    4. Alonso – strength of character, a winning personality
    5. Kobayashi – the desire to fight, fantasy, perseverance

  555. JFK says:

    1.Alonso
    2.Vettel
    3.Kubica
    4.Hamilton
    5.Webber

  556. AndoNeo says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Hamilton
    3. Webber
    4. Vettel
    5. Kubica

    Vettel would be higher if he didn’t crash into people while overtaking them every time.

  557. Ed says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Kubica
    3. Alonso
    4. Hamilton
    5. Webber

  558. er,go says:

    1. Rosberg
    2. Kubica
    3. Alonso
    4. Hamilton
    5. Vettel

  559. Andrew Woodruff says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Vettel
    3. Rosberg
    4. Hamilton
    5. Webber

    RK has to get a shot with a front running team as soon as possible. With Webber seemingly backed into an untenable position in the team, why not Red Bull in 2011? Fantastic speed, superb overtaker, impervious to media nonsense, and the biggest balls on the grid – deserves the chance to prove what many suspect, that he is the best of the lot.

    Although Vettel made mistakes, they all seemed to be borne out of frustration at events early in the season, and as it progressed, that robbed him of the comfortable position he really should have been in since race one in Bahrain. With 10 poles he was surely the stand out driver of the championship contenders. Having won it this season I expect a much more composed Vettel next time out.

    Rosberg outclassed Schuey all season and got the Merc on the podium or thereabouts consistently. Very impressive season in my view.

    Hamilton, with Kubica and Kobayashi one of the best overtakers on the grid by far. After a couple of unrepresentative results early in the season, he dominated Button for pace at almost every race. Like with Vettel, mistakes tend to be borne out of frustration, though as a former champion he should be more in control on that front by now.

    Webber had a great season, no doubt. There is something that rings true about his statements on not having the emotional support of the team, and this clearly affected him in the last three races. I doubt he will ever get a similar opportunity, and from the position he was in one could argue that he bottled it massively. However, the drives at Monaco and Silverstone alone make him a definite for the top five.

  560. Alex says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Kobayashi
    3. Rosberg
    4. Alonso
    5. Vettel

  561. AdrianP says:

    OK, by way of preface, I emphasise that we’re supposed to be talking about *driver* of the season. So we have to make some allowance for the speed of the car in which they find themselves. This impacts mainly on the Red Bull boys given that they undoubtedly had the fastest car of the field, by a margin which normally sees a runaway championship. This was especially true in qualifying, where Red Bull more or less owned the front row of the grid. So Webber and Vettel started off with a massive shoe-up.

    With that in mind:

    (1) The number 1 slot goes to Kubica, who has hardly put a foot wrong all season and has put in some stunning drives and qualifying performances in what was at most times the fourth or fifth quickest car. Lots of champagne performances *and* more or less completely error-free?

    (2) Next is Alonso: he goes to a new team and truly destroys his teammate (even if his teammate gives him a helping hand from time to time…). Maybe he really does bring four-tenths and this time he kept it in his own pocket. Many more mistakes than is normally the case with Alonso (the extra pressure? getting used to a new car? bad calls from the pit wall?) but in the second half of the season was absolutely relentless.

    (3) Given how good his good days are, Hamilton will almost always be in a list like this. Had a real purple patch mid-season, but then a series of really sloppy errors (a feature which he still hasn’t eradicated).

    (4) Button. Very difficult to call whether he should be above or below Hamilton. Alone of the top drivers almost completely faultless (just one shocker of a race: Korea). Always moving forward on race day, but real trouble in qualifying. The analysis is not easy but there is a case to be made that his pace over a whole race is better than Hamilton’s if one could leave qually aside. Unfortunately for Button, qually is part of the race weekend, though. Which driver would have been most likely to have sewn the title up by mid-season in a Red Bull (with a guaranteed slot at the front of the grid). My money would be on Button.

    (5) Vettel (but only just… he nudges out Rosberg for me). A few races where he ticked all the boxes, but some extraordinarily clumsy driving as well. When he’s out front, he’s uncatchable. When he’s not, he doesn’t seem to be able to overtake without playing dodgems. All the top drivers (apart from Button, Kubica) have made several big mistakes, but Vettel’s have looked the most amateur.

    So Webber doesn’t make the list. Is that really right? I think so, just about. He’s finished third in the points in the quickest car on the grid. There were a few stand-out performances (Monaco, Silverstone especially) and that’s reward in itself, but at the end of the day he hasn’t got what he should have done out of the car he had.

  562. YL says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Hamilton
    4. Webber
    5. Kubica

  563. Max says:

    first of all my own ranking

    1. F.Alonso
    2. R. Kubica
    3. S. Vettel
    4. M. Webber
    5. L. Hamilton

    and as a bonus results for the first 150 votes plus my own
    (using 5,4,3,2,1 points system)

    1. S. Vettel : 604
    2. F. Alonso : 533
    3. M. Webber : 365
    4. R. Kubica : 267
    5. L. Hamilton: 234
    6. N. Rosberg: 121
    7. J. Button: 66
    8. K. Kobayashi: 51

    No points for M. Schumacher and F. Massa, some points for Rubens and Heiki

    Considering the difference in the car winning potential between Red Bull and Renault ( 250 : 82 ) R. Kubica might be the top driver of 2010.

  564. Arri says:

    My top 5 would be:

    1 – Alonso
    2 – Webber
    3 – Vettel
    4 – Kubica
    5 – Kobayashi

    Alonso – Best recovery from mid season in a new team and scored most points in that time.
    Webber – Although he had the fastest car all season he didn’t have the full support of his team
    Vettel – for wining the WDC (still yet to see some brilliant,not fast, driving skills form him)
    Kubica – In a practically new team and car with all the baggage from last year and still managed to put that renault where it didn’t belong.
    Kobayashi – Outstanding showmanship and some hairy overtaking maneuver

  565. Matt K says:

    1. Kubica – Brilliant at Monaco, Spa and Suzuka. Made Q3 in all but the last race.
    2. Vettel – Deserved to dominate the season in the dominant car but for reliability issues. Some driver errors like the accidents with Webber and Button but I have to give props for trying to overtake the same car or an f-duct equipped Mclaren.
    3. Rosberg – Dominated Schumacher. 3 podiums. Didn’t necessarily outperform the car but put it where it deserved to be almost every race. Was denied a possible race win by Webber in Korea.
    4. Alonso – Very poor start to the season but made some WDC drives later on; it’s a long season so picking up regular points/podiums is better then being too aggressive.
    5. Hamilton – Was leading the WDC standings but Mclaren started falling behind Ferrari in the 2nd half of the year. Made 2 big driver errors that cost him dearly but still managed to finish only 16 points behind Vettel in what i’d consider the 3rd best car.

  566. Legend2 says:

    1. Webber
    2. Kubica
    3. Hamilton
    4. Vettel
    5. Alonso

  567. pedro says:

    I´d said,

    1. kubica
    2. vettel
    3. alonso or hamilton
    4. hamilton or alonso
    5. webber

  568. Seb says:

    1. Kubica
    2. Vettel
    3. Alonso
    4. Hamilton
    5. Rosbert

  569. mfelat says:

    1 – Alonso
    2 – Vettel
    3 – Kubica
    4 – Webber
    5 – Rosberg

  570. Gabe says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Webber
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kubica

  571. Neil Supermario Padley says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Hamilton
    4. Rosberg
    5. Webber

    Role on the new season

  572. Matthew says:

    I’m not sure if this is in time for the deadline but my top 5 are:

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Kubica
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kobayashi

    I would almost put Rosberg & Kobayashi tied for 5th place but I had to decide!

  573. mikey twigge says:

    1 kubica
    2 vettel
    3 rosberg
    4 button
    5 alonso

  574. Dr Prozac says:

    5. Alonso
    4. Hamilton
    3. Vettel
    2. Rosberg
    1. Kubica

    Kubica and Rosberg were flawless compared to other drivers and generally performed very good. Those two were the best drivers of the season imho. Robert was more convincing.

    Vettel was very fast and won the WDC, that’s why I’ve put him in 3rd position despite the fact that he had clearly the best car and he needs to mature (imho)

    Hamilton was more mature than before (if we forget about the “hoon driving” drama and some comments on team radio) and as fast as always. On other hand he made many mistakes.

    Alonso made more mistakes than he should. Team orders didn’t help. At least he recovered in the second half of the season.

    I was also considering Kobayashi – he was the best rookie, but he needs to work on his qualifying performance.

    BTW I wasn’t trying to match your judgement.

    1. Dr Prozac says:

      I forgot – no one was error free, that’s true. They are humans, not robots ;)

      But Kubica for example lost 3 points due to his mistakes (pitstop in Belgium), while Alonso, Hamilton, Vettel, Webber lost many more (including race wins).
      That’s why I wrote that Kubica and Rosberg were flawless compared to others.

  575. lmp8888 says:

    1. Alonso
    2. Hamilton
    3. Kubica
    4. Rosberg
    5. Vettel

  576. simon b says:

    1. Hamilton
    2. Kubica
    3. Rosberg
    4. Vettel
    5. Alonso

  577. Kazim says:

    5. Jenson Button
    4. Mark Webber
    3. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Fernando Alonso
    1. Lewis Hamilton

    I have rated the drivers on the following:

    1. Will Power
    2. Hunger to Win
    3. Belief to Succeed
    4. Motivation
    5. Killer Instinct
    6. Mental Toughness

    In order to emerge as the best, it is pertinent to face tides on each sides. I have rated only the championship fighters, since the rest of them were in a totally different league. The championship is what counts. The drivers fighting for it are at the highest level of competition.

    Jenson Button: Even though he was not trounced by Hamilton in Alonso fashion, he was nevertheless defeated by the Brit. Having initially led the season, never looked like the man who had the vision to win the championship. Attack was blunt, counted on consistency at a mediocre level. Reason being, the car not to his liking. Failure to adapt.

    Mark Webber: The Iron Man of the season. If not for Seb’s incredible speed, we would have seen in Webber a phenomenal champion. Took on Seb for a good part of the season, but could not sustain it in the end. Lost out of steam, and was never back at the levels of Silverstone/Spain/Monaco in the final 6 races of the season. That was his undoing.

    Sebastian Vettel: Sometimes I wonder who won the WDC this time. The RB6 or Vettel ? Its a tricky question, with an even trickier answer. Its Vettel. Outpaced his teammate in a strong and more resurgent Webber. Took on negative press. Thwarted it. Showed his brilliance right when it mattered the most. Had the cover of his rear guard, brought the team closer to himself, made them believe in his championship winning abilities. Delivered in the end, but in car where it should never have taken the last race to win. The target should have been achieved much earlier. You never throw away your chances, especially when you dominate the qualifying like Senna used to do.

    2. Fernando Alonso: The rise of the Spaniard. Back in a competitive team, and falls short of expectations in the first half. Took time to get back to form, and when it happened he hit the home run(almost). Clearly the second fastest package after Valencia, Alonso and Co. took some time in getting their feet together. And how well they did it! Owned Massa. Brought the team right in his grips. Won at Monza, the most crucial victory of the year, and maybe his Ferrari career. That victory sparked a string of outstanding podiums, coupled with important victories at Singapore and Korea. Took the fight to the Bulls, but was painfully unreliable in the first half of the season. Consistency went for a toss, and immaturish errors in China, Silverstone and Monaco made him and his team suffer. Picked up the pieces in Korea and Bahrain, not the kind of victories which maarks a champion. Got very close due to such lucky points, but nevertheless, believed in himself to win. And very nearly made it!

    1. Lewis Hamilton: If there is something about out pacing your car, then Lewis Hamilton fully deserves the title for this year. In having the 3rd fastest car, he was ahead of atleast one Bull Driver till Brazil, the penultimate race of the year. Took the fight to the title till the last race in the worst championship contender car. Out performed the incumbent World Champion, and took some inspiring victories in Istanbul, Canada and Belgium. Not to forget the amazing storming drives in Australia and China, where he did a Senna. Maximum overtakes in the year. First Non Red Bull Pole Sitter. Soaking victory in Belgium fighting for the championship against the strongest opponent at that time. Mistakes in Monza and Singapore ultimately proved too costly, costing him the championship right in the end. Had he not lost those 24 points, he would have been a 2 time champion right now. But the same can be said for the 3 reliability issues he faced. 18 crucial points lost in the penultimate lap in Spain, too much for the championship. It would have been a miracle had Lewis Hamilton won in the end, and he fell short by only 16 points, the difference between the top three in one single race.

  578. Ramesh says:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Hamilton
    4. Kubica
    5. Webber

  579. Tommy K. says:

    I mean I fully agree with you about Lewis!

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