Posted on December 1, 2011
Red Bull

It’s that time of year again, where we need to establish the Top Five drivers of the year, in descending order, with your Driver of the Season at the top.

This is the third year we’ve run this popular competition.

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 2011: Vettel Steals the Show, which is due to be published on December 13.

You have just under a week to give us your answers in the comments box below – the closing date for entries is Wednesday December 7th.

It was a pretty one sided championship, but how do you judge what Vettel did in comparison with others who had slower cars and still got great results?

There were some very strong performances this year from drivers throughout the field.

We want to hear what you think about the five drivers who you think did the business this year, with a line or two about them (please no 1,000 word treatises!!). Here’s a hint – if you want to match my selection you’ll need to take into consideration the whole grid, not just the front running guys who made the podium.

It was a different kind of racing year, with race strategy proving far more important than in recent years and that meant that it wasn’t all about the guys at the front – the midfield drivers had a chance to shine.

Please submit your answers in the comments section below.

The prize is a signed copy of my 2011 Review book, which is a limited edition, large format soft paperback. This is the third year we have done the book and it’s a cool collectible – a great way to look back on the behind the scenes stories and the races which made up the year. You’ll be surprised how much you’ve forgotten of the way the stories threaded along.

I’ve written loads of linking copy which gives a hindsight perspective on the key stories of the year like Kubica’s accident, Hamilton’s penalties, the horse trading over the blown diffuser ban, Button’s new contract, the takeovers of Virgin and HRT and much more.

I’m delighted that Red Bull Racing boss Christian Horner has written the Foreword, following on from Ross Brawn in 2009 and Mark Webber last year. Among other things, Horner writes about the state he found the team in when he joined soon after the team had been bought from Jaguar,

“F1 is a niche business you need to be fast responding and self-critical as you are judged every two weeks as you compete through the year. The team lacked technical leadership and that’s where the first focus was placed and who better to do that than Adrian Newey?”

If you can’t wait to find out if you’ve won or you just want to make sure you secure your copy before it sells out, as it did the last two years, you can order one here for £9-99 plus postage. Deliverable pretty much anywhere in the world. Click HERE

Name your top five drivers of 2011
713 Responses

  1.   1. Posted By: Marco
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:01 pm 

    Sebastian Vettel

    Jenson Button (I think a worthy mention goes to Fernando Alonso given his results with an uncompetitive car)

    [Reply]

    Marco Reply:

    ups. here is the full list

    Sebastian Vettel

    Jenson Button

    Fernando Alonso

    Jamie Alguersari

    A. Sutil

    [Reply]

    TB Reply:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Button
    4. Rosberg
    5. Di Resta

    [Reply]

    Jordan Reply:

    1. Button
    2. Alonso
    3. Vettel
    4. Alguersuari
    5. Schumacher

    kerbrider Reply:

    Vettel
    Alonso
    button
    alguesari
    webber

    Horno Reply:

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

    Amadis Reply:

    1. Vettel (grudgingly but he did finish first)
    2. Alonso (showed again why he is such a great driver, the best currently)
    3. Button (did much better than expected and overcame Lewis’ “home court advantage”)
    4. Sutil (the best outside of the top four teams)
    5. Webber (because he is such a likeable person and performed better than Lewis, a huge underachiever

    [Reply]

    APUNOC Reply:

    The winner is simple, it can only go to one person, someone who has almost always beaten their teammate, thrashed them in qualifying and quite frankly has raised question marks over their teammates ability even though they have a contract for next year. KOVALIANEN

    Kovalainen – Thrashed his teammate, raised doubts of Trulli’s ability and hence contract. Thrashed Virgin and HRT, outraced a Williams in one race and a Renault another.
    Button – Beat Hamilton, in McLaren. In 2009 you would have been called an insane fan for that kind of remark. Some great races and was consistantly on it. Sure Hamilton had the better when Hamilton focused, but that rarely happened. Button was consistant and strong.
    Vettel. won the championship but had the best car, and with Webber at the well of the limping KERS-less, bad luck ridden number 2 car there wasn’t really a match. Everything looks amazing out front, but had some bad spots in it, made mistakes when he was under pressure. Canada and Germany to name two. Was able to win through being the first in and drove away into clear air. Defending mostly limited to DRS being ineffective at races. Also had quite a bit of luck (see Monaco).
    Alonso – Dragging the Ferrari around. 3rd best car by a long way. Won a Gran Prix in style. Always edging the car into the top few despite the car having problems. Lapped in Spain yet fought on to win a GP not that much later. Smashed his teammate.
    Webber – 5th. Not consistant, but when he was on fire, he flew. Drive of the weekend in Malaysia, 10th in lap 1, finished the lap 9th, finished the race in 4th, on the back of 3rd! Agan in China, driver of the season IMO, from 18th (Q1 quali), to the podium. A few more laps and even Horner was saying that Webber was looking like winning the Gran Prix… from 18th! Move over Kimi in Suzuka 2005. Drive of the Season and hence gets a top 5.

    Honourable mention – Sutil – some great drivers and even though the BBC think Di Resta is the greatest thing since sliced bread, Sutil thrashed him in the end and proved he is top midfield driver

    I doubt yours (JA) will be similiar at all, I’m guessing from the title it will begin with Vettel, but hey I’m not a fan

    [Reply]

    James Allen Reply:

    Doesn’t matter whether you like a driver or not, surely it’s about objective view of who did the best job? Or are you not capable of an objective view?

    legend465 Reply:

    Good post APUNOC. Driver of the year has to go to Vettel though, getting the better of his awesome teammate. But totally agree – not a fan of Vettel either.

    Also, James, APUNOC acknowledges Vettel in his Top 5, so there is some degree of objectivity. I say Vettel is my driver of the year, however I will never be a fan of his, after his behaviour after being beaten fair and square by Mark Webber last year. Exactly why I am not a fan of Alonso, after his behaviour after being beaten fair and square by Lewis Hamilton.

    APUNOC correctly acknowledges some of Webber’s drives through the field this year. China 2011, Webber’s drive was arguably the greatest drive of all time. The guy was about 12th half way through the race about one minute behind the leaders, and finished on the podium, almost winning the race, with no safety cars, no weather intervention, and only one retirement on the grid (a Toro Rosso I think). Surely one of the greatest drives of all time, if not the greatest by far. Lapping about 3-4 seconds faster than the rest of the field at various stages in the GP.

    My TOP 5 of 2011:
    1. Seb Vettel
    2. Fernando Alonso
    3. Heikki Kovalainen
    4. Jenson Button
    5. Nico Rosberg

    David A Reply:

    @ legend465 – Hamilton did beat Alonso fair and square in 2007 (Hamilton 2nd on 109, Alonso 3rd).

    Webber did not beat Vettel in 2010 (Vettel was champion, Webber was 3rd).

    Martin Reply:

    I like your argument – it is unlikely to win you a boook though. The Kovalainnen-Trulli argument could also be made about Alonso and Massa as Felipe has been publicly told to improve.

    Rating Button as second while noting that Hamilton should have beaten him only stacks up if you think Hamilton is on a completely different level to every other driver. If you look at Button’s wins, if Vettel hadn’t erred in Canada, Hamilton similarly in Hungary and then Hamilton getting a puncture in Suzuka, you end up with Button only winning with a bit of fortune.

    Cheers,

    Martin

    C Manuel Reply:

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Sutil
    Heikki
    In order from 1.5

    [Reply]

    Ade Reply:

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Di Resta
    4. Alonso
    5. Schumacher

    [Reply]

    Andrew Reply:

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Alguersuari

    [Reply]

    Steve Mc Reply:

    Good shout, Andrew!

    [Reply]

    Brett Reply:

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

    [Reply]

    SNB Reply:

    Vettel
    Vettel
    Vettel
    Vettel
    Vettel

    Almost a perfect season , not another single sole was even close to beating him.

    And that hurts being a Webber supporter

    [Reply]

    Tealeaf Reply:

    Couldn’t agree more, there’s no way Alonso’s a more solid and faster driver than Seb right now, the speed and consistency of this boy is a class above, also a mention to Jenson Button who came alive after his hugely impressive win at Montreal, a truly classy driver that far exceeded most expectations and completely humbled Lewis Hamilton. So here’s the top 5:

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

    [Reply]

    Martin Reply:

    You raise an interesting question in my mind – often these lists only ended rating racing performance – or if you like a heavy bias to the race over qualifying.

    The reason I mention this is that Red Bull worked out that the position in the first stint of the race was key to setting up the race, and therefore qualifying performance and performance on full tanks were key. (Normally, different things, but with DRS design, now possible). Anyway, Jenson was generally pretty average at getting to the end of the first lap well placed. Given that he had the second quickest car and that Webber had qualifying and starting issues, I think it is significant black mark against Button that he was only in the top two at the end of lap one in four of 19 races. That just isn’t good enough when it is basically fundamental to winning. From there he drove excellent races, but fundamentally, he was shooting himself in the foot in a similar way to Webber.

    Andrew C. Reply:

    hi;

    1. Vettel -
    most of the drivers on the grid would love to have his bad days

    2. Button
    started the season well, dealt with the drama and circumstances like a true professional. i suspect he was the most watched pilot by the other drivers

    3. Alonso
    drove to expectations but not much sensational about his year

    4. Kovalainen
    his passing record on race starts is quite good and managed to finish a few races touching the glass ceiling

    5. Rosberg
    you don’t beat your team mate and make the best post-race YouTube videos ever without something extraordinary.

    honorable mention -
    Barrichello. it will be a long time before another racer even touches his marks of laps completed, race participation and continued excitement.
    DiResta. some fine moments.
    Heidfeld. finished 11th in the season championship in half the races. good plan by Renault???

    thanks again James!

    regards,
    Andrew C.

    [Reply]

    Max Smoot Reply:

    Andrew C.
    Good to see that Heidfeld’s 11th place held up. He would have taken that team to more points and hence more end-of- season euros. Offsets the money brought by Senna’s backers.

    [Reply]

    Simon Willan Reply:

    1. Vettel. Won the championship, massacred his team mate and made very few mistakes.
    2. Alonso. Made Massa look average and made a very ordinary car look good – including a win.
    3. Button. The first person to beat Hamilton in equal machinery.
    4. Di Resta. Rookie of the year, showed real class and enough potential to secure his future in F1.
    5. Kovalainen. His contribution to Lotuses’ 10th place was huge, out qualified the qualifying specialist and showed the confidence he so lacked at Mclaren.

    [Reply]

    Martin Reply:

    An interesting choice in Di Resta – at what point do we disregard inexperience? He drove a lot of smart races and could have results similar to Button’s. The 9-10 qualifying record against Sutil hides the edge that Adrian had in the second part of the season in particular. The lack of one lap pace relative to Sutil (who was smashed by Hamilton in the same F3 team, generally slower than Fisichella in qualifying) is something he will need to address in my view. Given that Paul had the best finishing record in the season and yet got less than 2/3s of Adrian’s points, you clearly put a strong weighting on being a rookie.

    Cheers

    Martin

    [Reply]

    Antonio Palmiotto Reply:

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Perez
    Alguersuari

    [Reply]

    Louie Reply:

    1 – Button
    2 – Schumacher
    3 – Vettel
    4 – Kovalainen
    5 – Rosberg

    [Reply]

    Miemie Taylor Reply:

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

    [Reply]

    Miemie Taylor Reply:

    Vettel; is the greatest driver since Michael Shumacher, Button; is a great driver he just needs a better car, Webber; is fast but is no good at starting, Alonso; has the guts but the car needs to be faster, Shumacher; is simply the master but needs a faster car.

    [Reply]

    Chris Reply:

    Here you go:

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kobayashi
    5. Perez

    [Reply]

    Collin Reply:

    Jenson Button
    Sebastian Vettel
    Mark Webber
    Nico Rosberg
    Michael Schumacher
    Paul Di Resta
    Adrian Sutil
    Lewis Hamilton
    Kamui Kaboyashi
    Timo Glock

    [Reply]

    Kshitij Reply:

    And Alonso?

    [Reply]

    Kev Reply:

    Top 5 in my opinion

    1. Vettel (Not a fan but he was unbelievable this year)
    2. Alonso (won a couple of races, few podiums in a car that was slow and did not deserve a top 3 finish. Great job!)
    3. Button (What a win and a great race in canada, very strong season)
    4. Di Resta (Had to go with a Force India driver, great season for the team and are getting better. Even though Sutil scored more points. Di Resta in he rookie season just pips him.
    5. Kovalainen (maybe not everyones choice…. but he’s now one of the top drivers in F1. Was tempted to put him higher. Getting the Lotus-Renault into Q2 on 2/3 occassions. In a car that wasn’t fast enough. Had good race pace and outperformed the car and his teammate.

    [Reply]

    Jo Reply:

    Button, Vettel, Rosberg, Di Restaurant & Webber. All for totally different reasons!!

    [Reply]

    dawn Reply:

    vettel
    button
    Alonso
    Di Resta
    Rosberg

    [Reply]

    Jamie Reply:

    1. Vettel – consistency, control and speed throughout races and qualifying.

    2. Button – Undoubtedly one of his if not his strongest year in formula1. Runner up in championship and 8 podiums in last 9races with 3 great victories.

    3. Alonso – The Ferrari wasn’t capable of winning a race but he stormed to victory at Silverstone. He outperformed the car in races and had good race pace in comparison to the front runners.

    4. Di resta – Tricky one between Di resta and Sutil. Sutil had a sluggish start to the year but achieved some very good results towards the end and showed some strong qualifying performances. Di resta just takes it for me though, as its his first season in formula1 and his performance in singapore arguably one of the most mentally and physically demanding circuits was excellent – 6th place.

    5. Kovalainen – Out-qualified his team-mate consistenly and out-performed his lotus car. He overall had good race pace and is moving his lotus team forward. It was hard choice between him and Perez for 5th spot.

    [Reply]


  2.   2. Posted By: Dave
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:04 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovalainen
    5. di Resta

    [Reply]

    Dave In NZL (now Aus). Reply:

    Fernando
    Sebastian
    Jenson
    di Resta
    Jamie

    [Reply]


  3.   3. Posted By: DMyers
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:05 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  4.   4. Posted By: Rana
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:09 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Kobayasshi
    Alguersuari

    [Reply]


  5.   5. Posted By: Jamie
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:09 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Kovalainen
    Rosberg

    [Reply]

    Momo Reply:

    +1

    [Reply]


  6.   6. Posted By: Michael Williamson
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:11 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Perez
    Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  7.   7. Posted By: Kit
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:13 pm 

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

    [Reply]

    Arsen Reply:

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

    [Reply]


  8.   8. Posted By: Jens Jensen
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:14 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    He may have had the best car, but he got into that Red Bull through hard work at Torro Rosso and in junior series. Scarily dominant on the track, nice guy off it.

    2. Jenson Button
    Beat one of the fastest drivers on the grid, Lewis Hamilton, using a mix of patience and raw speed. A superb race in Canada and great overtakes in other races.

    3. Fernando Alonso
    Ruthless, aggressive, cunning and always fast. Managed to get podiums even when the car was way off the pace.

    4. Heikki Kovalainen
    Great attitude and still fastest of all the “new” teams. Motivated and fast enough to get the car closer to the midfield than any other backmarker.

    5. Paul di Resta
    A fantastic race in Singapore and a great qualifying in Silverstone were the highlights of his season. Extremely mature on and off the track. Often outshone his experienced team mate, Adrian Sutil, in his rooky season.

    Honourable mention: Sergio Perez, who was quick in qualifying. A future star, which is confirmed by Ferrari’s interest in him.

    [Reply]

    **Paul** Reply:

    I agree with this top 5.

    Vettel had a very good car, but so did Mark, and the Mclarens were faster than they appeared in a good few races. Winning at Monza with one of the overtakes of the season on Alonso with pretty much the slowest car in the speed traps was amazing – as was his qually lap. Other highlights would be the Suzuka qually lap, getting pole in a slower car that day.

    JB, great to see him do so well, I backed him to be comparable with Lewis when he moved to McLaren. Nice to see that my insitincts about a drivers talent and pace aren’t totally shot! Great drives in mixed conditions, the real master of wet wether races in F1.

    Alonso, beating both Webber and Hamilton in a Ferrari which wasn’t as good is an amazing feat. Part of me questions if he should be 2nd in this list, but JB, I’ll say not as Jenson hasn’t had an entire team focused around him. Pound for pound the best driver on the grid IMO.

    Heikki – Absolutely brilliant from him. After his McLaren years where he was always given 2nd best and a poorer strategy (his opinion not hearsay!) it’s great to see him doing so well. I hope they have a good car next term so he can make use of it.

    Di Resta, Paul has had a sensational first year in F1. Sutil is no mug, to come in and beat this guy on the track as often as he has done is impressive. Fingers crossed his experience from this season will result in an improvement next season.

    [Reply]

    Julian Reply:

    Alonso finished behind Webber.

    [Reply]

    Martin Reply:

    Hi Paul,

    Personally, I find it interesting that Button is second on so many lists. If we start with your statement on Alonso – pound for pound the best driver on the grid (often made by people with more expertise than me, such as team engineers that James speaks to) – and we consider his season, there were few qualifying sessions or race where he didn’t maximise his results (Sepang comes to mind). If the team gives him 100%, that is part of the package he brings, just like Lewis’ emotional swings. In my view he sets a very high benchmark this year.

    How does Button compare to the best pound-for-pound driver? The immediate reference point if Hamilton, who when focussed about Fernando’s level depending on who’s arguing. Hamilton was usually faster in qualifying – there is almost surprise when Button is quicker. There were occasions where Hamilton had significantly better races than Button, which by nature means that Button was below what could be achieved.

    There is a further point that I’m not sure is entirely McLaren’s fault. Jenson often gained a lot of ground late in the race. In terms of winning races, the positioning prior to the first stops is usually critical. If you are at the front, you can control the race, stopping early to get a gap, or stopping later to cover tyre wear scenarios later in the race. Button was generally pretty poor at being well placed at the first stop (1st once, 2nd three times in 19 races – I think I’m excluding Japan due to Hamilton’s puncture). To me that wasn’t good enough when it was basically fundamental to beating Button.

    Compared to Kovalainnen, who dominated his teammate in qualifying and then started well, I don’t think Button quite matches that standard or Alonso or Vettel. Still in my top five, but not the top three.

    Cheers,

    Martin

    [Reply]


  9.   9. Posted By: cory
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:15 pm 

    vettel
    button
    alonso
    di resta
    kovalinen
    but not in that order

    [Reply]

    James Allen Reply:

    What order then?

    [Reply]

    Alistair McDonald Reply:

    Ooh, James, is this a hint? Is your choice a permutation of these five?

    ;-) (I’ve already voted…)

    [Reply]

    andrew.cocos Reply:

    Random :)

    [Reply]

    Rob Newman Reply:

    The winning order … ie. your selection :)

    [Reply]

    Cory Reply:

    Button
    Alonso
    Vettel
    Kovalinen
    Di Resta

    [Reply]


  10.   10. Posted By: CJM
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:19 pm 

    Vettel – for raceday consistency, and qualifying brilliance
    Alonso – for demolition of his team mate, and race day performances
    Button – for his nous, for out scoring Hamilton, and even showing greater speed on occasion
    Hamilton – still the most exciting driver out there. Shame about the mid season drop off though.
    Di Resta – as the rookie of the year. Consistently performances throughout. Could have done even better but for some strange strategy calls.

    [Reply]


  11.   11. Posted By: Tim Van Poucke
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:20 pm 

    Top: Fernando Alonso
    2. Michael Schumacher
    3. Sebastian Vettel
    4. Heiki Kovalainen
    5. Jerome D’Ambrosio

    [Reply]

    James Bolton Reply:

    Schumacher ahead of Vettel?? Surely not!

    [Reply]


  12.   12. Posted By: Andy Bird
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:21 pm 

    1) Sebastian Vettel
    Had the best car (just), but made full use of it to dominate the season.

    2) Jenson Button
    Consistent, mighty in changeable conditions (as always) & won a fully dry race too.

    3) Fernando Alonso
    Always challenging McLarens & Webber despite slightly inferior car.

    4) Nico Rosberg
    Comprehensively beat (a much-improved) Schumacher again.

    5) Heikki Kovalainen
    Delivered everything that could be expected, given the car at his disposal.

    [Reply]

    Pete Reply:

    Rosberg beat schumacher! What!! Only because of schu’s 4 dnf….

    [Reply]


  13.   13. Posted By: Muhammed Patel
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:25 pm 

    Thanks for yet another great competition James!

    My five:

    5. Paul Di Resta
    4. Jaime Algusauri
    3. Fernando Alonso
    2. Jenson Button
    1. Sebastian Vettel

    [Reply]


  14.   14. Posted By: Jomar Eldoy
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:26 pm 

    1. Vettle
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Webber
    5. Kovalinen

    [Reply]


  15.   15. Posted By: Dabet M.
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:26 pm 

    Alguersuari… It was just his season (considering he was driving a TR). Great season by the Spaniard.

    Button… Even thou I still believe Alonso is a more talented driver, JB showed that his driving style was superb. That Canadian GP was a blast. He had just a great season.

    Kovalainen… Sadly this folk didn’t picked up points this season, but what a job he did many times showing how behind was JT.

    Sutil… He was just incredible in that slow SFI, he did a great job through the season, considering the high pressure he had with all the media talking wonders about PdR.

    Vettel… Just did the job as it should be every time you have a winning car.

    I’ll give a special mention to Alonso… superb driver and to the rookie Perez… watch out for this kid.

    [Reply]

    Sergio Reply:

    I agree with you about Perez and don’t forget another Mexican who likes me the most: Esteban Gutierrez. Mexico has 2 very talented drivers.

    [Reply]

    Dabet M. Reply:

    Gutierrez is a better driver than Perez in my opinion, no doubt about that. I hope EG gets waaay more testing done, because even as a reserve driver his hands haven’t been behind the steering wheel. EG was in Mexico when SP had that bad crash in Monaco, How is this possible?
    It will be great seeing driving Boltas, Vergne and Gutierrez in a near future.

    [Reply]


  16.   16. Posted By: Peter Bakalor
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:28 pm 

    This will take some analysis! To me Vettel, Button and Alonso are in the top 5, but choosing the other two is really going to be hard. I hate dropping Mark, but he wasn’t at that level this year IMHO, and Lewis was too inconsistent (I’m approaching this as based on this year’s performances, not whom I think are the best 5 drivers out there). Maybe it’s easier to work through the obvious drop offs and see who is left? This will have to be a more thoughts later exercise for me.

    [Reply]


  17.   17. Posted By: George Wilson
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:29 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Alguesuari

    [Reply]


  18.   18. Posted By: abulafia
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:29 pm 

    In that order:

    1. Sebastian Vettel. Dominant, record-breaking year, hardly a fault all season long, demolished his team-mate and the entire field. Demorilizing performance for the opposition…

    2. Jenson Button. His performance in 2011 validated his 2009 championship and gave it credibility. Out-performed Hamilton (something that not even Alonso in Hamilton’s rookie year had achieved). His racing throughout the year was aggressive and calculative, in measured doses. Excellent job.

    3. Fernando Alonso. He got the best out of the car and comfortably beat his team-mate. His determination and skill has never been in doubt – however, his car developping skills will come into focus in 2012 if Ferrari fail yet again to improve their performance and properly develop the car throughout the season.

    4. Adrian Sutil. Came back from a difficult start of the season, having problems adapting to the Pirelli tyres and also having to endure the constant over-hyping of Di Resta by the British media. He managed to turn it around, produced two 6th place finishes and helped the team to their best ever finish, scoring double the points of Di Resta. He was also the highest placed finisher outside the top eight. Although there have been questionmarks on his technical ability to develop a car, the fact that the team has been improving season by season steadily is a testament to the opposite.

    5. Heikki Kovaleinen. He utterly destroyed poor Jarno, who was often left fighting with the HRT’s and Virgins while Heikki took the fight to Williams and Sauber. He helped the team secure the valuable 10th place in the championship and, most important of all, he never lost his determination and drive despite fighting at the back of the grid. Deserves a better drive, and I hope Catterham reward his loyalty with an improved technical package next year

    Honourable mention: Perez, very good rookie season – Alguersuari, impressive race performances but quali pace lacking a little bit

    [Reply]


  19.   19. Posted By: Peter Wright (@pwright78)
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:29 pm 

    Top 10 Drivers 2011

    1) Vettel – Simply on another level compared to the rest of the grid. Only driver to visit Pirelli HQ, was pounding around Abu Dhabi within days of 2010 title triumph so he could understand 2011 tyres. Reads races superlatively, has the right equipment but makes 110%use of it and seemingly never makes a mistake.

    2) Button – Workmanlike start to the season before growing further in confidence post – Canada and delivering superlatively in second half of season. Superb victory in Suzuka but highlights were arguably through the field drive at Spa and making Hamilton and Schumacher look like they were driving in a lower formulae in Monza.

    3) Heikki Kovalinen – Team Lotus package didn’t quite live up to the pre season expectation, but Heikki routinely dragged the Team ahead of much better funded and grounded rivals thanks to some stunning starts and early laps, taking Team Lotus to places it had no business being. Destroyed Trulli who is supposedly a better qualifier who sought refuge in power steering issues. SOle reason why Team Lotus are now benefitting from being 10th for second year running.

    4)Paul Di Resta – Overshadowed his much more experienced team mate for much of the season. Given testing is at such a premium and he was learing tracks for the first time he was remarkably self assured in both qualifying and races, hence his likelihood of being retained for 2012 and perhaps moving on to Mercedes in the future such is his high stock.

    5) Jaime Algusuari
    Almost Joint last position as impossible to separate from his team mate as they were all season and reason why Torro Rosso don’t know which to retain for 2012. Routinely ran clever strategies to drag car up from a Q3 exit on Saturday to a strong points finish on a Sunday. Algusuari edges it for slightly better finishes and more race action on Sunday afternoons.

    Great work in 2011 James, thanks very much

    [Reply]


  20.   20. Posted By: Beth Weatherhead
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:30 pm 

    Vettel, Webber, Button, Alonso, Kobayashi

    [Reply]


  21.   21. Posted By: Anthony
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:31 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Jenson Button
    3. Jaime Alguersuari
    4. Fernadno Alonso
    5. Nico Rosberg

    [Reply]


  22.   22. Posted By: Marlon
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:31 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Kovalinen
    3. Button
    4. Sutil
    5. Perez

    [Reply]


  23.   23. Posted By: Tes Macare
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:32 pm 

    My top 5 drivers

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Jenson Button
    3. Lewis Hamilton
    4. Fernando Alonso
    5. Nico Rosberg

    Regards from holland.

    [Reply]


  24.   24. Posted By: Steve R
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:33 pm 

    Di Resta
    Button
    Vettel
    Rosberg
    Senna

    [Reply]

    Eleanore Reply:

    Glad to see I’m not alone in honestly wanting to include Senna in my own list. For a team that’s basically been developing backwards (not to mention managing both their cars and their press abominably), I think he’s shown a lot of promise.

    [Reply]


  25.   25. Posted By: dirty harry
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:33 pm 

    5. Alguersuari
    4. Perez
    3. Alonso-made miracles with a bad Ferrari, deserved third place instead of Webber
    2. Button-very consistent, great decisions and a bit of luck
    1. Vettel-trashed the oposition with a superb car

    [Reply]


  26.   26. Posted By: Rafael
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:33 pm 

    My top 5 for 2011 would be:

    (1) Sebastian Vettel – Yes, he had a superior car advantage, but he gave nothing away and maximized all opportunities. Last year, if many thought (including myself) he was somewhat lucky to steal the championship in 2010, this year he was simply on another level. He is a worthy double world champion, and surely this is only the beginning! At 24, he’s already a great. “The people’s champ!”

    (2) Jenson Button – It’s pretty tight for me between Button and Alonso, but I’ll give it to Jenson since he had more points, more wins and he beat the other Red Bull. This year, Jenson really stepped up his game and proved that he’s the real deal. He may not be “mega-quick” nor is he the best qualifier, but he is one hell of a fine racing driver, always making the most of race day.

    (3) Fernando Alonso – He made the most out of a dodgy car, and there’s no denying his heart. Fernando was outstanding this year, dragging his slow Ferrari into grid positions and podium/points finishes that it didn’t deserve. His drives in Spain, Italy, UK and Abu Dhabi (to name a few) were exceptional. Here’s to hoping Ferrari can give him a title challenger for next year.

    (4) Sergio Perez/Paul di Resta – Solid 1st season from these two: they are talents to look out for. Here’s to hoping they continue to get better and get the opportunities they deserve down the road.

    (5) Michael Schumacher – It was great to see flashes of the old Schumi in a lot of races this year, and it looks like the “old man” is getting his touch back. He didn’t quite finish ahead of Rosberg (another great performer of 2011) in the standings, and he was thoroughly beaten in qualifying, but it’s simply outstanding to see Michael put up a fight. I do hope he gets all of his old magic back, in what could be his final (take 2!) season, next year!

    [Reply]


  27.   27. Posted By: Raymond Yu
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:33 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Fernando Alonso
    3. Jenson Button
    4. Nico Rosberg
    5. Lewis Hamilton

    [Reply]


  28.   28. Posted By: Samantha Farish
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:34 pm 

    Lewis Hamilton
    Sebastian Vettle
    Jenson Button
    Paul Di Resta
    Heikki Kovalainen

    [Reply]

    Rob Newman Reply:

    Hamilton fist? This is a wind up isn’t it? :)

    [Reply]


  29.   29. Posted By: Daniel Mawby
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:35 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Hamilton
    Webber

    [Reply]


  30.   30. Posted By: Sam Bishop
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:35 pm 

    1) Button
    2) Vettel
    3) Sutil
    4) Alonso
    5) Rosberg

    [Reply]


  31.   31. Posted By: Daniel Shires
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:35 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Jenson Button
    3. Fernando Alonso
    4. Lewis Hamilton
    5. Paul di Resta

    [Reply]


  32.   32. Posted By: James D
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:35 pm 

    1. Vettel – Not much of an explanation needed. Quick and intelligent, able to go faster than his rivals and manage his tyres better.

    2. Alonso – Possibly his best season in F1. Able to fight McLarens and Red Bulls in an inferior Ferrari. 4th in the championship was not justice for his brilliant driving.

    3. Button – Fantastic consistency in the second half of the season with all those podiums.

    4. Kovalainen – Get this man a better car. Rebuilding his reputation after poor time at McLaren, destroyed Trulli and towards the end was challenging drivers from established teams.

    5. Sutil – Considered Rosberg, but he was closely challenged by Schumacher. Then I thought Sutil. He came alive towards the end of the season when his seat was under threat. 6th places in Germany and Brazil were the highlights, 9th in the championship a strong showing. Despite being the higher Force India driver, I’d still go for di Resta and Hulkenburg next season as they have poor potential and wouldn’t take long to regularly beat him IMO. Hope Sutil gets a seat at Williams though.

    [Reply]


  33.   33. Posted By: Dan Alderson
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:35 pm 

    my top 5 would have to be.
    1 – Vettel – hardly put a foot wrong all season. Very impressive
    2 – Button – only other to really challenge Vettel all year and drove to some great wins and keeping calm under pressure. Canada is a prime example of that.
    3 – Di Resta – For a first year I think he did brilliantly and helped prove that Force India are stronger then ever before.
    4 – Sutil – Again a strong drive to finish in the top 10 in the driver standings.
    5 – Webber – overshadowed by Vettel but he never gives up!

    [Reply]


  34.   34. Posted By: John Nicholas
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:36 pm 

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Button
    Di Resta
    Kovalainen

    [Reply]

    John Nicholas Reply:

    Vettel – for a near faultless season, with some astonishing qualifying performances.

    Alonso – for dragging a recalcitrant Ferrari into finishing positions his teammate came nowhere near achieving.

    Button – for a season that mirrored his metronomic 2004 campaign, for shading his illustrious teammate and of course, Canada.

    Di Resta – for looking like a driver that has been in F1 for years, not months.

    Kovalainen – for making Team Lotus more serious than they deserved and getting them the coveted 10th spot. Deserves a drive for a top four team again.

    [Reply]


  35.   35. Posted By: James
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:36 pm 

    My top 5

    1) Vettel. If he isnt the top man on everybody’s list, then they have to have been living under a rock for the enterity of the season! He hasnt really put a foot wrong all year, has dominated from the front for much of the season, worst classified result was better than Felipe Massa achieved all season, 4th. It’s a domination on par with the likes of Schumacher in 2002. Driver and car in sync.

    2) Button. Probably will feature as many other people’s number 2 as well. He’s got on top of the car, tyres, DRS and all the other gubins this season to comprehensively beat his team on the race day and come second. He has won some of the finest races this year, and 2011 is argueably his beat season yet. He got the better Hamilton overall, who got overly frustrated. Could be an outside bet for championship contender next year?

    3) Alonso. He got the clear maximum out of the car. Given that his most frequented qualifying spot was 5th, it’s fair to say he couldnt get any more out of the car. Mclaren and Red Bull were that little bit to far out of reach in qualifying trim. Only a mistake from the four in front gifted a higher qualifying place. He out qualified his team mate quite convincingly. Also, his pace on race day has been excellent. Vettel didnt really have an answer to his pace in Silverstone, and his starts have been amongst the best this year.

    4) Heidfield. A suprising one here, but I think he deserves more credit than he is given. He was parachuted into Renault after Kubica’s awful rallying accident and started very well. However, once he started falling down the points positions, Renault quickly fell out of love with him. The thing is, Renault gave him a dog of a car, one that caught fire twice with him at the helm! F1 is a harsh business, but I dont feel that Kubica would have been able to have got any more out of the car than he did. I think we’ll always remember Nick as the Unlucky German. A champion that never was perhaps

    5) I’ve got to put a rookie in the top 5, and for me Perez edges di Resta. Sure, Paul has been impressive this year and has sized up quite well against his team mate. However, I feel that many Brits and commentators look at him with rose tinted glasses and give him more credit than he’s worth. He’ll probably win races one day, but he hasnt impressed me this year tbh. Perez, however, didnt pretty well! Scored quite often, and came back from his accident in Monaco quite strongly, even though he himself felt that he probably wasnt race fit for 4 or 5 races after. Top marks to him, he’s got the pace, he’s got the tallent and will most likely be in a Ferrari one day.

    [Reply]

    madmax Reply:

    Same order as mine only I have Kovalein were you have Heidfield and I 100% agree with the Di Resta comments “I feel that many Brits and commentators look at him with rose tinted glasses and give him more credit than he’s worth.” The BBC is getting a bit of a joke were Paul is concerned.

    [Reply]


  36.   36. Posted By: CTP
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:37 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Hamilton
    Rosberg

    [Reply]


  37.   37. Posted By: Patrick Carter
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:37 pm 

    5. Heiki Kovalainen
    - Managed to get into Q3 several times and really helped Lotus to show they are improving.
    4. Nico Rosberg
    - A solid unassuming season, occasionally punched above his weight.
    3. Paul Di Resta
    - Amazing rookie season, even managed to stay in the race after being forced to evade Hamilton. Solid performances and very few rookie errors.
    2. Sebastian Vettel
    - Simply untouchable, but not really put under much pressure on track.
    1. Jenson Button
    - Was solid, calm, the only guy to make Vettel make a mistake. Handled pressure well and was just sublime in changeable conditions.

    [Reply]


  38.   38. Posted By: Daniel Petherbridge
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:37 pm 

    1: Vettel
    2: Button
    3: Di Resta
    4: Alonso
    5: Rosberg

    [Reply]


  39.   39. Posted By: typee056
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:38 pm 

    1.Alonso
    2.Button
    3.Vettel
    4.Schumacher
    5.Perez

    [Reply]


  40.   40. Posted By: tigeraid
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:38 pm 

    Vettel was great, but Vettel drove the perfect car. Button won three races in a not-so-perfect car and beat his worshipped-like-jesus teammate.

    I can’t in all honesty put Webber on this list, he was a shadow of his previous year’s self, like the fight had gone out of him (unless he got a good jump on the start.)

    So…

    1. Button (did the best with what he had, also had more competitive passes all season than anyone except maybe Schumacher.)

    2. Vettel (champ)

    3. Alonso (car was crap but put it places it had no right to be in)

    4. Hamilton (when he wasn’t an erratic bonehead, he was brilliant)

    5. Rosberg (again out-scored and out-ran a 7-time world champion in equal equipment–even if Schumacher passed a zillion cars this year.)

    [Reply]


  41.   41. Posted By: Stephen Richardson
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:38 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Schumacher
    5. Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  42.   42. Posted By: George Davies
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:39 pm 

    1 Vettel
    2 Button
    3 Alonso
    4 di Resta
    5 Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  43.   43. Posted By: Scott
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:39 pm 

    5.Michael Schumacher
    4.Seb Vettel
    3.Nico Rosberg
    2.Mark Webber
    1.Jenson Button

    [Reply]

    christos pallis Reply:

    what? webber 2nd¬ what season were you watching!

    [Reply]

    James Bolton Reply:

    Webber and Rosberg ahead of Vettel? You’ll have to justify that choice…

    [Reply]


  44.   44. Posted By: Andrea Richardson
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:39 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Di Resta
    Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  45.   45. Posted By: Kris Grantham
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:40 pm 

    Top 5 drivers of the season.
    1) Sebastian Vettel. Outstanding in all areas. His record this season speaks for itself.
    2) Jenson Button. Completely outperformed Lewis Hamilton and had some outstanding drives, Canada and Monaco stand out.
    3) Fernando Alonso. Outdriving his car. His victory at the British GP was an outstanding effort and his starts have been awesome. Compared to Massa’s performance in the same car, He’s been excellent.
    4) Paul Di Resta. Rookie of the year no question.Very professional and very quick. Consistently in the top 10 shootout and consistently beating his more experienced team-mate.
    5) Heikki Kovaleinen. While not the fastest, I think his performances in qualifying compared to Trulli and his very good race-pace has to see him counted up there. Mixing it with the midfield on occasions too, I think he has to be in the top 5.

    [Reply]


  46.   46. Posted By: Arnie S
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:40 pm 

    1. Seb Vettel
    Self explanatory
    2. Jenson Button
    Well deserved
    3. Nico Rosberg
    Outscores Schu, and shows he is a top driver
    4. Adrian Sutil
    Has made FI to a midfield team
    5. Heikki Kovalainen
    Has lifted Team Lotus from the backmarkers to a lower midfield

    Sorry Webber, Alonso and Hamilton, but regardless of that you are driving outstanding cars, you have not had outstanding performance

    [Reply]


  47.   47. Posted By: Iwan
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:41 pm 

    In no particular order

    Vettel
    Yes he was in a uber dominant car, but the way he went about taking control of the season deserves respect.

    Alonso
    Often dragged the car higher up than what it should’ve been.

    Di Resta
    Fast from the off, though not consistent enough. But given how little these guys test I’d have to say I was impressed.

    Kovalainen
    Consistent, fast and ready to pounce. Seems a lot more relaxed than ever before.

    Glock
    Deserves a better seat to prove himself as the potential winner he is.

    [Reply]


  48.   48. Posted By: gonzeche
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:41 pm 

    From both drivers and constructors final standings, it must be Vettel, Button, Alonso, Sutil and… then it gets tough to pick out out one of the Perezs, Di Restas or Algersuaris for they all have hade highlights mixed up too often with very intranscendent performances (proving those highlights to be highly due to race circumstances i.e. tyre and strategy choices). It is also hard to say on the grid’s lower end. Heikki sure did well, but would that have been different with an Alonso or a Kobaysashi (just to name two) in such a car? Does this really qualify for the season’s top five? At the end the best were in front for a reason other than the car only (as their team mates results show…)

    [Reply]


  49.   49. Posted By: Mark Williams
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:42 pm 

    1) Sebastian Vettel
    – Second world title in a row and totally dominated the season. What more can you say!

    2) Jenson Button
    – First team mate to beat Hamilton. He didn’t try to compete with Lewis on pure speed and drove to his strengths. Great racing and overtaking displayed all year

    3) Fernando Alonso
    – Outpaced Massa all year, got the best out of a clearly slower car and often wedged himself in-between the McLarens and Red Bulls. Made some cracking starts and raced well

    4) Nico Rosberg
    – Got the better of Michael again. Went wheel to wheel with the maestro and often came off better. Definitely got the best out of the car.

    5) Adrian Sutil
    – Shaky start to the season, being out qualified by rookie Paul, but then came back very strong in the second half. Drove some great races and showed a good turn of speed in qualifying. Finished best of the rest outside the top 4 teams.

    A special mention goes to Heikki Kovalainen. Constantly blew Trulli away again. Made some awesome starts and raced brilliantly to get himself amongst drivers in much better equipment. Looking forward to seeing what he can do next year in a hopefully much improved
    Caterham.

    [Reply]


  50.   50. Posted By: Jeanette
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:42 pm 

    1. KOB
    2. PER
    3. HAM
    3. WEB
    4. BUT
    5. MAS

    [Reply]

    RAY Reply:

    Massa!?

    [Reply]

    Ian Reply:

    Massa is your biggest problem with that list?!

    How about the fact there is #3 twice, and the Vettel doesn’t even make the top 6!

    I could go on…

    [Reply]

    Jeanette Reply:

    lol.. massa was meant sarcastic ;)

    [Reply]


  51.   51. Posted By: Christopher Lewis
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:42 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel- I kind of speaks for itself, it was a season of supreme domination with Schumacher/Senna like driving..record poles, numerous victories, and robotic efficiency coupled with pure aggression and skill (please see move on Alonso in Monza)

    2. Jenson Button- Jenson’s driving this year would have been worthy of a world title in any other season..cool, calm and collected throughout the year. Stand out performance obviously Canada, drive of the year (maybe decade). Another stand out is Abu Dhabi, to show the pace he did and finish as well as he did with that KERS problem shows the measure of the man. (ps, he beat lewis)

    3.Fernando Alonso- Considering the car was clearly well off the pace for the majority of the year, compared to McLaren and Red Bull, he consistantly preformed, keeping up with the front runners, finishing on the podium in half the seasons races, and taking a great win (some what fortuitous as Red Bull slipped up in pits) at Silverstone, shows hes still the top man when the cars on song

    4. Heikki Kovalainen – I have went with Heikki in 4th Place this season for the simple fact that he was brilliantly consistant and streaks ahead of those around him in the slower paced cars. He absolutely trounced Trulli in the same car, showing time and time again that he could mix it with the midfield. I expect a very strong season from him in the new improved Catherham team next year.

    5. Paul Di Resta – It was a toss up between the Force India drivers for my 5th place. Sutil had an extremely good season finishing in 9th in the championship, with some great end of season results; however Paul, in his rookie year, was the stand out. He took to F1 like a duck to water, consistently fast in race pace, and showing in silverstone, that he could nail quali when the car was on tune. For a guy to come from DTM ito F1 and perform as he did is nothing but brilliant. #FUTUREWORLDCHAMPION

    P.S. a thank you to the Sauber drivers for some of the more exciting driving this year.

    Chris

    [Reply]

    Jon W Reply:

    Pretty much my list, although I would be temnpted to put Rosberg in for Di Resta.

    [Reply]


  52.   52. Posted By: Robert Ratcliff
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:43 pm 

    1 – Sebastien Vettel – yes he had the best car, but unlike 2010 his season was almost faultless. You can count his mistakes on one hand: Germany, Canada, Abu Dhabi (not even his fault!). He was in another league to his team mate.
    2 – Fernando Alonso – to finish ahead of Hamilton and just 1 point behind the Red Bull in an obviously sub-standard car is one hell of an achievement.
    3 – Nick Heidfeld – Came into the team very late and went into the summer break as team leader. Unlucky to have been dropped. Highlights include last to 8th at Spain!
    4 – Jenson Button – Canada was his greatest win of his career and he finished ahead of Hamilton. Enough said.
    5 – Paul Di Resta – There or thereabouts all year round in his rookie season.

    [Reply]

    Jon W Reply:

    Heidfeld ahead of Button – seriously?

    [Reply]

    Rob Ratcliff Reply:

    Quick Nick! Love it

    [Reply]


  53.   53. Posted By: Mojo
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:44 pm 

    Vettel and Button are the two drivers that stand out for me this season. Vettel for obvious reasons. Button because he did what nobody expected, beating his overrated team-mate with brains and mature driving. Reminds me of Prost and Lauda.

    And Maldonado and Petrov have proven that ‘pay drivers’ can actually drive.

    [Reply]


  54.   54. Posted By: Vince Warrington
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:44 pm 

    1) Button – Looked comfortable all year, compared to his ragged team mate. Consistently put the McLaren in places it had no right to be in, and seemed to be unflappable.

    2) Vettel – Yes, he had far and away the best car, but he made Webber look distinctly average. Put him anywhere near the front of a race and he’ll invariably win it.

    3) Kobayashi – Matured, but kept his raw pace and overtaking flair and drove some sparkling races in a very average car. Less ‘wild man’ this year allowed Sauber to beat Torro Rosso.

    4) Senna – Yes, Senna. He got into the car after it was at its early-season best, but always pushed on with it and made Petrov look average in comparison.

    5) Kovalainen – Proved he’s still worthy of a big team by being far and away the best Lotus driver, indeed the best driver in any of the ‘new’ teams.

    [Reply]


  55.   55. Posted By: Sam Jessop
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:44 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel – Without a doubt an utterly dominant season. Anyone who thinks it’s all down to the car need only look at Webber’s tally of wins this year.

    2. Jenson Button – Managing to get the best out of a poor design and to overcome the alladged star of the team has been highly impressive. Almost needless to say Montreal was the most impressive drive of the year.

    3. Fernando Alonso – Almost silently managing to finish consistanly in the worst Ferrari in years. One win hints at the lack of competitiveness but this supposed prima donna just got on with scoring good points regardless.

    4. Adrian Sutil – Finishing way ahead of the also impressive di Resta, a solid season that looks like being not quite enough to save his seat. It would have been nice to make use of the Q3 time though.

    5. Bruno Senna – After Renault gave Heidfeld the heave ho the detractors were quick to point out what a bad decision putting Senna in the car but his performances in qualifying have been mighty impressive. I’m sure a second year in a good car would see firm improvements but that looks unlikely to happen.

    [Reply]


  56.   56. Posted By: Justin Bieber
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:45 pm 

    1.Vettel
    2.Alonso
    3.Button
    4.Paul Diresta
    5. Jaime Alguersuari

    [Reply]


  57.   57. Posted By: Jorge Bautista
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:46 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Rosberg
    Hamilton

    [Reply]


  58.   58. Posted By: Rupert Richardson
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:47 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Sutil
    5. Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  59.   59. Posted By: Adnan K
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:47 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    2. J Button
    3. F Alonso
    4. M Webber
    5. Paul Di Resta

    [Reply]


  60.   60. Posted By: Andy
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:47 pm 

    1. Vettel
    Yes he had the best car but his performance in qualifying was superb, world champion and beat his team mate by 134 points.

    2. Button
    Not the best at qualifying but his race craft was, in my opinion, the best of anyone on the grid. Canada was incredible.

    3. Alonso
    The car was not the best, but I think he got more out of it than anyone else would have. Always gave it 100% and more.

    4. Di Resta
    Was beaten by Sutil towards the end of the season, but for a rookie year, a great job being only 15 points behind his team mate.

    5. Maldonado
    Another rookie, in a poor car. He only scored one point but his team mate only scored four.

    [Reply]


  61.   61. Posted By: Scott
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:47 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Sutil
    5. Alguersuari

    [Reply]


  62.   62. Posted By: Tin Smith
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:48 pm 

    1. Seb Vettel, Finger wagging aside, imperious this season, not a fan but credit where it’s due.
    2.Jenson Button, First team-mate to beat Hamilton at Mclaren, even made Flav eat his words, which is no mean feat.!!.
    3.Alonso. Constantly over achieving in the 2011 Ferrari,which will remain forever forgetable.
    4.Paul Di Resta, Outstanding in his rookie F1 sseason.
    5. Bert Myllander, His performance at the Canadian GP was only beaton by Button in a McLaren…!!!!

    [Reply]

    build Reply:

    OK, I laughed, thx.

    [Reply]


  63.   63. Posted By: Simas
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:48 pm 

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Button
    4. Hamilton
    5. Oh, it’s a tough one,… the best of the rest. I say Rosberg.

    [Reply]


  64.   64. Posted By: Seán Craddock
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:48 pm 

    1- Jensen Button: In my opinion a better season than his championship winning year. In a car that was not the best for the most part, he delivered great results, ahead of Hamilton, and some cracking races with Canada being a highlight.

    2- Paul Di Resta: Rookie of the year, points at his first Grand Prix, and got better results than the experienced Sutil.

    3- Daniel Ricciardo: Unfortunately didn’t get much media attention driving a HRT, but he had some good results. Finished ahead of Lotus, Virgin, and his experienced teammate a few times. I also don’t recall him making a driver error

    4- Adrian Sutil: The other Fi driver I know, but he had a good season especially in Brazil with great overtakes. Finishing ahead of all 3 Lotus Renault GP drivers in 9th place in the standings.

    5- Rubens Barichello: A very tough season for the Brazilian but he kept his spirit, very consistent and shows real passion. Hope he gets a seat next season

    [Reply]


  65.   65. Posted By: sam w
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:48 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Di Resta
    Hamilton – a dreadful season by his standard but every win was a superlative drive.

    [Reply]


  66.   66. Posted By: Jasper
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:50 pm 

    1. Alonso – still for my money, perhaps slightly begrudgingly, the all-round best driver on the grid – he did amazingly well to secure 10 podiums in clearly the third best car this season. Don’t know how he does it, and if Ferrari deliver him a better car for 2012 he’ll be hard to stop.
    2. Vettel – what is there to say that hasn’t already been said? Over one lap or over a whole race, this guy knows when to turn it on and how to drive to win. Proved he can overtake and deservedly a two-times champion.
    3. Di Resta – for a first season in F1, to end up finishing with the most completed race laps should be highly commended and he clearly has the temperament to be successful. May well end up at a top four team before long.
    4. Alguersuari – for a man that may have considered himself lucky to still have an F1 seat at the start of 2011 and after the first few races, a good handful of points finishes in a difficult car to drive showed fantastic commitment and effort.
    5. Button – nearly went for Sutil here but JB nicks it as he was the one who managed to get closest to Vettel as well as achieving where Alonso and Kovalainen failed in being able to beat Lewis Hamilton in the same car; next to his incredibly consistent race guile and tyre management.

    [Reply]

    StallionGP F1 Reply:

    What a myopic comment about Alonso how is he the all round best driver in F1,when the race is on pls follow live timing and you would have a different opinion i hear people say this am always amazed this season for majority of the races only @ drivers standout Vettel and Button Alonso the development driver could not help Ferrari with there problems on the hard tyres for an entire season so how is he the best all rounder, the last time Alonso a championship Hamilton had not even stepped into an F1 car I think people like webber and hamilton made alonso appear better than he his this season

    [Reply]

    Mingojo Reply:

    I wonder why Lewis has finished the last two years behind Fernando.By the way, drivers give feedback to the engineers, Alonso doensn’t caliber wind tunnels, etc…

    [Reply]


  67.   67. Posted By: Triana
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:50 pm 

    1.Fernando Alonso
    2.Sebastian Vetel
    3.Jenson Button
    4.Jaime Alguersuari
    5.Nico Rosberg

    [Reply]


  68.   68. Posted By: David
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:51 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Alguersuari

    [Reply]

    build Reply:

    I reckon James may well agree with you although I went with my own choices.

    [Reply]


  69.   69. Posted By: celeste
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:52 pm 

    1.Vettel, a class on his own
    2.Button, constant and efective
    3.Alonso
    4.Webber
    5.Heiki

    [Reply]


  70.   70. Posted By: Robin Schneider
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:52 pm 

    1) Vettel: his qualifying abilities are amazing. He hasn’t let fame and glory get to him and he will still get better with age and maturity.

    2) Alonso: out performed his car more often than not and my guess is that he had the biggest performance gap of anyone on their team mate.

    3) Kobayashi: Controlled aggression and put his car in the right place to overtake rather than using bully tactics which more often than not end up in a crash.

    4) Button: there is no doubt he has rattled Hamilton and is consistently surprising his critics.

    5) Sutil: Out performed his team mate and it’s a pity more ex-champs are coming back into the sport as it’s reducing the chance of drivers like Sutil and Kobayashi to show their worth..

    [Reply]


  71.   71. Posted By: AA
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:54 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Button
    4. Di Resta
    5. Perez

    [Reply]


  72.   72. Posted By: Dan Orsino
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:55 pm 

    1 – vettel
    2 – button

    no 3rd

    joint 4 – alonso, hamilton
    joint 5 – kobayashi, di resta

    [Reply]

    Dan Orsino Reply:

    sorry I misprinted:
    - vettel
    - button
    - alonso
    - kobayashi
    - schumacher

    [Reply]


  73.   73. Posted By: zombie
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:55 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Schumacher
    4. Button
    5. Alguersuari

    [Reply]


  74.   74. Posted By: Dave Aston
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:56 pm 

    1 Vettel
    2 Button
    3 Sutil
    4 Kobayashi
    5 Schumacher

    [Reply]


  75.   75. Posted By: Andrew Derlien
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:56 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Di Resta
    5. Hamilton

    [Reply]


  76.   76. Posted By: Lawrence
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:56 pm 

    Vettel – Simply the best of 2011
    Button – Outscored Hamiliton – who’d guessed?
    Alonso – Another driver wringing out the car
    Sutil – Top 10, better than expected
    Di Resta – Great rookie season

    [Reply]

    Geoff Reply:

    Same here:

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Sutil
    5. Di Resta

    The top 3 were easy, the last 2 were not, until I stopped forcing myself to choose which of the Force India drivers to include.
    Close 6,7,8: Rosberg, Senna, Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  77.   77. Posted By: Mark J
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:56 pm 

    Vettel – Taken the preperation of an F1 driver to another level. Results reflect this.

    Button – Proved he is one of the best drivers on the grid and the Brawn year was not just the car. Beat Hamilton fair and square.

    Alonso – Drove above the cars capabilites and got results to prove it.

    Kovalainen – In a pretty average car managed to duke it out at times with established teams when the opportunity was there. Beat Trulli at Monaco (no mean feat).Got some confidence and speed back after a tough time at McLaren.

    Sutil – Tough one for the final place. Last drive of the year was a blinder managing to beat Rosberg. Pulling a decent move in the process. Finally got some much needed consistancy after seasons of breaking wings and wheels. He is quick and deserves a drive, just a shame he can not set up a car if what is written is to be beleived.

    Also mentions to Alguersuari, Glock, and Webber. Webber was alright this year and deserces a mention for pulling off some great moves. Alonso at Eau Rouge has to be the move of the year. Shame DRS played a part the next lap…

    [Reply]


  78.   78. Posted By: Rob Newman
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:57 pm 

    1. Vettel – The complete package
    2. Button – The lucky driver
    3. di Resta – The best new comer
    4. Kobayashi – The entertainer
    5. Kovalainen – The best of the rest

    [Reply]


  79.   79. Posted By: Ravi Govin
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:57 pm 

    Hi James,
    Enjoy reading your website.

    My Top 5 drivers are:
    1. S Vettel 2. J Button 3. F Alonso 4. H Kovalainen 5. L Hamilton.

    Hamilton had his Top 5 moments and some Bottom 5 moments but overall its hard to ignore the excitement he brought to the races. He generates more excitement than any other driver both while he overtakes or with the failed overtakes. Take him away this season will be a Yawn. I would say he has generated more fan interest in the sport since Shummi did.

    I couldnt put Mark Webber there since he had a car that should have challenged Seb for the title but constantly failed to be a factor in the races at the top. He totally underachieved in the best car. Maybe he was deflated after losing 2010 title.

    Ravi

    [Reply]

    james Reply:

    They were obviously two different cars. Appalling pit stops, appalling strategies, appalling reliability etc. etc. I don’t think it was Weber who underachieved.

    [Reply]

    Ravi govin Reply:

    Even then it shouldn’t have taken him till the last race to win his first of season aided by dubious gearbox issues to vettel.

    [Reply]


  80.   80. Posted By: BeardyGuts
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:58 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  81.   81. Posted By: Michael
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:58 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  82.   82. Posted By: Malcolm
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:58 pm 

    Vettel – Simply the best

    Alonso – Gave it everything pretty much every weekend

    Button – A couple of off-the-pace weekends but his best season

    Sutil – ‘Best of the rest’ behind the big 4 teams

    Kobayashi – A bad patch in the middle of the season let him down

    [Reply]


  83.   83. Posted By: Merlinghnd
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:59 pm 

    Vettel – top of his game all season
    Alonso – just awesome in any car and never gives up
    Button – smooth and determined when the going gets tough
    Hamilton – he did win 3 races this season and if he had stayed out of trouble, how many more??
    Rosberg – he beat Schumacher again this season and certainly had pace if not overall results. Interesting potential, maybe another Button in the making.

    This is a top 5 competition but if it was Rookie of the Year would say Di Resta shades it over Perez.

    [Reply]


  84.   84. Posted By: John
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:59 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Di Resta
    Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  85.   85. Posted By: malcolm.strachan
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 4:59 pm 

    James, would it be possible to tally all of the votes for each of the drivers of the day, and then come up with a total sum for the year?

    That would be interesting to see.

    Even though Vettel dominated, I would bet that his total sum of votes would not top the list.

    [Reply]

    James Allen Reply:

    Yes we’re planning to do that

    [Reply]

    malcolm.strachan Reply:

    If you want, I can email you my spreadsheet…

    [Reply]

    malcolm.strachan Reply:

    Couldn’t wait for the reply.

    1) Button – 21522
    2) Hamilton – 13065
    3) Alonso – 12975
    4) Schumacher – 9532
    5) Vettel – 8514
    6) Webber – 6531
    7) Kobayashi – 3512
    8) Alguersuari – 3107
    9) Heidfeld – 2561
    10) di Resta – 1893
    11) Sutil – 1271
    12) Perez – 776
    13) Kovalainen – 764
    14) Maldonado – 573
    15) Buemi – 357
    16) Rosberg – 244
    17) Massa – 183
    18) Petrov – 47

    Note 1: there was no vote for the Australian GP, so a few drivers, notably Petrov (podium) and Perez (6th before DQ) missed out on many potential votes. Hamilton and Vettel would have also likely received more votes for this race.

    Note 2: There was an “Other” option for Malaysia with 668 votes, and many comments below for Webber deserving a nomination.

    Now, calculated with points instead of votes (most votes gets 25 points, second-most gets 18 points, etc, using the F1 system):

    1) Button – 238
    2) Alonso – 235
    3) Vettel – 200
    4) Hamilton – 155
    5) Schumacher – 133
    6) Webber – 121
    7) Kobayashi – 87
    8) Alguersuari – 86
    9) Sutil – 66
    10) Perez – 53
    11) di Resta – 40
    12) Rosberg – 40
    13) Heidfeld – 33
    14) Buemi – 26
    15) Kovalainen – 25
    16) Massa – 12
    17) Maldonado – 10
    18) Petrov – 6

    Number of nominations:
    1) Vettel – 16
    2) Alonso – 14
    3) Button – 12
    4) Webber – 9
    5) Hamilton – 8
    6) Schumacher – 7
    7) Kobayashi – 7
    8) Alguersuari – 7
    9) Sutil – 5
    10) Perez – 5
    11) Rosberg – 5
    12) Buemi – 3
    13) di Resta – 2
    14) Heidfeld – 2
    15) Kovalainen – 2
    16) Massa – 1
    17) Maldonado – 1
    18) Petrov – 1

    From all of these breakdowns, it’s obvious that the fans preferred Button’s under-dog performances this year. Vettel showed that he was consistent all year in terms of impressing James enough for nominations. Alonso was also surprisingly close to Hamilton, given that this is an English-speaking blog (a bit of sample-bias, perhaps, but also a testament to the objectivity of the fans that frequent the site). It’s a shame there was no vote for Australia, although it wouldn’t have changed the top end of the field much.

    So congrats to Button… the people’s champion!

    [Reply]

    James Allen Reply:

    Wow! Thanks for doing that! As you say it’s in English but a fully international audience from the main F1 countries

    [Reply]

    StallionGP F1 Reply:

    Vettel was never driver of the day

    [Reply]


  86.   86. Posted By: Irish con
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:00 pm 

    1 vettel
    2 alonso
    3 button
    4 kovalainen
    5 sutil

    [Reply]


  87.   87. Posted By: Enigma
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:01 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  88.   88. Posted By: John
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:01 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Jenson Button
    3. Fernando Alonso
    4. Lewis Hamilton
    5. Paul di Resta

    [Reply]


  89.   89. Posted By: Jon williams
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:02 pm 

    1 vettel
    2 button
    3 di Resta
    4 alonso
    5 rosberg

    [Reply]


  90.   90. Posted By: Henrik
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:02 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Fernando Alonso
    3. Jenson Button
    4. Heikki Kovalainen
    5. Adrian Sutil

    [Reply]


  91.   91. Posted By: Martin Nash
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:02 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel – Even though he was in the fastest car he was able to make a respectably quick team mate look average. He also made quick laps in qualifying where it matter (Abu Dhabi & Brazil from recent memory)

    2. Fernando Alonso – Drove his Ferrari to the maximum and beyond. Even though most races he wasn’t fast enough for victory he was always THERE to give the Mclarens & Red Bulls something extra to think about.

    3. Jenson Button – Drove as good as his championship year and beat a quality team mate.

    4. Heikki Kovalainen – Performed much like Alonso but the other end of the grid.

    5. Paul Di Resta – Very consistent for first year and often matched team mate Sutil. Rookie of the year.

    [Reply]


  92.   92. Posted By: madmax
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:03 pm 

    1 Sebastian Vettel
    Had easily the best car as 5 or 6 fastest laps from team mate Webber also shows but Vettel was flawless pretty much the entire season.

    2 Jenson Button
    A hard call between him and Alonso but I went for Button because the team isn’t built around him unlike the Spaniard. Button’s best performance in F1 and along the way beat a team mate Alonso didn’t. Some great performances particularly Canada.

    3 Fernando Alonso
    Punched above his weight and had battles with cars that should have been well ahead of him. (Webber) Like Vettel he dominated his team mate.

    4 Heiki Kovalien
    Great efforts in a rubbish car and has a new lease of life since leaving McLaren, something I think Massa could have if he left Ferrari.

    5 Sergio Perez
    Very very tough last one but I gave to Perez on being easily the best rookie, although Riccardo was handicapped by not starting at the beginning of season.

    [Reply]

    madmax Reply:

    My list is based on achievement over the year rather than who would be the best if they were in the same car which would look very different!

    [Reply]


  93.   93. Posted By: Pox
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:04 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  94.   94. Posted By: Jonno
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:04 pm 

    1. (Best): Vettel: has to be, after that season, he may have had the top car, but the points margin (122 – almost 5 race victories) equals domination.

    2. Button: A better season arguably than his championship year, and the drive of the season in Canada. Ended up comfortably beating Hamilton, an achievement few predicted 2 years ago.

    3. Alonso: Close to beating Button (I can easily see it argued the other way round), and certainly outperformed the car: you just look at the domination over Massa all year.

    4. Kovalainen: In all but two races (excluding retirements) he was the best of the new teams, and even starting beating some of the back end of the midfield towards the back end of the season. Nearly always the fastest in qualifying too – I look forward to what Caterham can achieve next year … points?

    5. Sutil: Can’t really remember the start of the season very well, but was certainly impressive recently – especially Brazil. Beat the Renaults (Petrov & Heidfeld+Senna) into the top 10 in the drivers, despite two early podiums for them, and even beat Mercedes in the odd race.

    Exclusions:
    Hamilton: Some great races, but over the season, his worst so far. Big fan, and hopefully he’s firing next year.

    Webber: Too big a gap between him and Vettel. But deserved the win he got last week

    Di Resta: Quite hard to choose between him and Sutil. A good debut season – and Force India have quite the nice problem with drivers! Its a little odd, as I’d probably pick the Hulk and DiResta next year, despite putting Sutil in my top 5!

    [Reply]


  95.   95. Posted By: Kenny
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:04 pm 

    Alonso, Vettel, Button, Hamilton, Rosberg

    [Reply]


  96.   96. Posted By: Eoin K
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:06 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Sutil

    [Reply]


  97.   97. Posted By: goferet
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:07 pm 

    1) Vettel

    Was supper consistent, paced himself while ahead & never made any big mistakes + destroyed his teammate’s self belief!

    2) Alonso

    Out performed his car, got all the podiums for the team & was close to clinching 2nd in the championship

    3) Jenson

    Beat his highly rated teammate, took the fight to Sebastian in some races but some of his podiums are hollow in my view

    4) Heikki

    Out qualified & out performed Truilli but since we haven’t seen much of him, can’t say much about him

    5) Sutil

    When his career was on the line, raised his game in the second half of the season & gave the team it’s best finishes (6th) twice

    6) Riccardo

    The Rookie came in and in a couple of races was matching & beating the veteran Luizi

    7) Hammy

    For despite the fact he has had a bad season, he still managed to win 3 races & never gave up even the times he found himself out of position

    [Reply]


  98.   98. Posted By: Paul
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:07 pm 

    1) Vettel – Dominant force throughout the year
    2) Button – 3 magnificent wins, beat Hamilton in the standings on merit
    3) Alonso – Coaxed far more out of the poor Ferrari than anyone thought was possible
    4) Kovalainen – Another excellently consistent season as he dragged the Lotus around rather quicker than anyone else could manage
    5) Di Resta – Highly impressive debut season, could’ve been even better but for some questionable strategies from his team.

    [Reply]


  99.   99. Posted By: Dave Deacon
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:08 pm 

    Button – Canada! WDC but for Newey
    Alonso – even though he gave up publicly
    Di Resta – rookie deserves a better car
    Sutil – for pulling his socks up
    Weber – for putting up with being so obviously stuffed.

    [Reply]


  100.   100. Posted By: Kimi Räikkönen
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:10 pm 

    1. Kimi Räikkönen

    [Reply]


  101.   101. Posted By: Juanjo
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:11 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Sutil
    5. Alguersuari

    [Reply]


  102.   102. Posted By: Charles Littlewood
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:11 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Jenson Button
    3. Fernando Alonso
    4. Nico Rosberg
    5. Paul di Resta

    [Reply]


  103.   103. Posted By: Skan
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:12 pm 

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Button
    Di Resta
    Rosberg

    [Reply]


  104.   104. Posted By: drarpad
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:12 pm 

    VET
    BUT
    ALO
    DIR
    KOV

    [Reply]


  105.   105. Posted By: Shane Pinnell
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:13 pm 

    1 – Sebastian Vettel: Near flawless drives from Melbourne to Brazil.

    2 – Fernando Alonso: Close to Vettel, did more with less but the WDC tips #1 to Vettel

    3 – Jenson Button: Finished 2nd overall with some great drives, really close to being #2 on this list. Vettel is WDC and I am a long time fan of Alonso.

    4. Kamui Kobayashi: Finished 12th, car deserved 14th & 15th, while prone to making mistakes he also has moments of brilliance.

    5. Adrian Sutil: Kept his nose clean and finished above the car’s natural order despite all the machinations of Mr. Mallya.

    The important thing for me in measuring a driver over a season is to see, at the end of the day, if the driver was able to drive above the capability of the car he was given.

    [Reply]


  106.   106. Posted By: vvipkho
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:14 pm 

    Vettel
    Kovalainen
    Button
    Trulli
    Webber

    [Reply]


  107.   107. Posted By: Lily Fenton
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:14 pm 

    1. sebastian vettel
    2.nico rosberg
    3. sergio perez
    4.Jaime Alguersuari
    5. mark webber

    [Reply]


  108.   108. Posted By: Ikhine
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:15 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovaleinen
    5. Alguesuari

    [Reply]


  109.   109. Posted By: Andrew Goffin
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:15 pm 

    1) Sebastian Vettel
    2) Jenson Button
    3) Fernando Alonso
    4) Lewis Hamilton
    5) Heikki Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  110.   110. Posted By: Oli
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:15 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Di Resta
    4. Alguersari
    5. Sutil

    [Reply]


  111.   111. Posted By: Baghetti
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:17 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  112.   112. Posted By: Steve
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:17 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Kobayashi (position improvements in races)
    D’Ambrosio (reliability)
    Kovaleinen (overachieved in under peforming car)

    [Reply]


  113.   113. Posted By: JF
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:17 pm 

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

    These are the guys who really consistently got the most out of their respective cars, whereas for the most part, their team mates did not.

    [Reply]


  114.   114. Posted By: Vladimir Grebennikov
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:19 pm 

    1. Vettel. This one is quite obvious
    2. Button. ‘Want to succeed in a wet race? Then follow Button’
    3. Alonso. Struggling with the not-so-good Ferrari and still reaching top spots.
    4. Kovalainen. Best of the last. I think with a bit better car he would beat all the middle group.
    5. Schumacher. I’m rooting for Michael since 1994. This year he looks much more like the Red Baron than he did last year.

    [Reply]


  115.   115. Posted By: Anja
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:19 pm 

    Button
    Vettel
    Alonso
    Schumacher
    Sutil

    [Reply]


  116.   116. Posted By: meltwaterfalls
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:19 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Di Resta
    4. Alonso
    5. Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  117.   117. Posted By: Bader Hussain
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:20 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Kovalainen
    3. Button
    4. Alguersuari
    5. Kobayashi

    [Reply]


  118.   118. Posted By: Alistair McDonald
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:21 pm 

    1: Vettel (I mean . . he whipped Mark)
    2: Button (Some really great drives, just needs to nail qually)
    3: Alonso (driving the wheels off that dog of a Ferarri)
    4: Rosberg (Maturing nicely, still ahead of MS)
    5: Di Resta (A great start to his career, I believe FI were sandbagging him towards the end of the season)

    [Reply]


  119.   119. Posted By: Anand R
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:22 pm 

    My top five:
    1. Sebastian Vettel
    Undoubtedly the best performance by a driver-team combination in the last decade since Schumacher-Ferrari domination in 2002/04. Unfair to attribute his domination just on the car and Adrian Newey. Interesting to read reports on how he travelled to the Pirelli factory, identifying the need to adapt to the tires before any top driver thought of doing so. (I remember Lewis was fitness training in the mountains and Jenson in Hawaii during winter last year while Vettel must have been strategizing on the best way forward with Pirelli)

    2. Jenson Button
    Has to be his best season, even better than championship winning ’09. To finish ahead of a driver of top calibre like Webber in the 2nd best car is top performance. Also, finishing ahead of Hamilton earns him an extra point. Win in Canada stands out head and shoulders above, probably the best win of the season across all races. Also, is a good team player.

    3. Fernando Alonso
    The best driver on the grid on current form, wanted to put him above Vettel and Jenson, but those two did an incredibly good job and warrant a higher position (as indicated even by the points table). My favorite for next season as long as Ferrari are less than 0.3-0.5 sec off Mclaren’s/Red Bull’s pace.

    4. Kamui Kobayashi
    Deserves 5th place only for ensuring 2 points in the last race to ensure Sauber finish ahead on STR in 7th place. Oh, how many millions of dollars are those 2 points worth. Imagine him crashing out of Brazil GP, Alguersuari would have finished 10th and the two teams would have been locked on points. Also, pulled of some scintillating overtaking moves with the exception of Canada (Massa) and Spa (Hamilton).

    5. Adrian Sutil
    Unfortunately “woke” up only in the second half of the season. But decent, error free drives ensured his TEAM finished in 6th comfortably, almost finishing 5th.

    [Reply]


  120.   120. Posted By: Alessandro Forconi
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:22 pm 

    1. Hamilton
    2. Button
    3. Kovalainen
    4. Di Resta
    5. Rosberg

    [Reply]


  121.   121. Posted By: Euan
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:24 pm 

    1) Sebastian Vettel – easy choice. Thrashed the whole field time and again. I was at Monza and it was a privilege to watch him overtake Alonso and then pull away from the field at an extraordinary rate.
    2) Jenson Button – Vettel’s most consistent challenger. Took three fantastic victories and on most occasions extracted the most he could have from each race. But for back to back mechanical failures would have finished an easy, rather than close, second in the championship.
    3) Fernando Alonso – Regularly put a car on the podium that had very little business being there. Made many outstanding starts and kept with the pace in the early stages of races, but was often let down by the Ferrari’s hatred of hard tyres.
    4) Heikki Kovalainen – Destroyed Trulli in qualifying and the races, regularly finishing half a lap ahead of him, even if only one place ahead. Even managed to dice with the occassional Sauber or Williams. He was the most overtaken driver in 2011, what’s extraordinary is that he managed to find himself in a position to be overtaken.
    5) Adrian Sutil – Struggled at the beginning of the season, but came into his own with two sixth place and two seventh place finishes, not to mention four elevenths. His drive in Brazil in particular was outstanding. Deserves to find a seat somewhere next year

    [Reply]


  122.   122. Posted By: Phil Waddell
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:24 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Perez
    Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  123.   123. Posted By: Jie
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:24 pm 

    1 – Sebastien Vettel – pretty much faultless throughout the year.
    2 – Fernando Alonso – almost always on the limit of his car and occasionally outperforming it.
    3 – Jenson Button – smooth and collected and beat his highly-rated teammate.
    4 – Paul di Resta – did well in his rookie year and performed admirably against a more experienced Sutil
    5 – Heikki Kovalainen – did his magic in the Lotus and held his own convincingly against the tail end of the midfield in the race, especially at the last few events

    [Reply]


  124.   124. Posted By: vassy
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:26 pm 

    1. S Vettel
    2. F Alonso
    3. J Button
    4. A Sutil
    5. Paul Di Resta

    [Reply]


  125.   125. Posted By: James Pickering
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:27 pm 

    1 – Vettel. Outgrew the erratic performances of 2010 to dominate with racecraft and unbelievable statistical dominance over his team-mate. Although he had all the cards, he rarely failed to play them perfectly.
    2 – Button. So-so beginning, but the stellar drive in Canada was a catalyst for a second half where he dominated the rest of the field (and regularly challenged Vettel) with confidence and remarkable consistency.
    3 – Alguersuari. A very lacklustre first half saw immense pressure on the 21 year-old from his team. Superb drives in Valencia, Italy and Korea saw him ultimately dominate his team-mate and prove himself against previous inconsistency. At 21!
    4 – Sutil. Pressured by team rivalry and reputation for poor development skills, he nonetheless drove the team’s points haul and finished 9th. More than any other mid-pack driver made the most of the car on offer again and again.
    5 – Alonso. Difficult to judge: did he outperform the car, or Massa underperform? Nonetheless, hugely consistent and few mistakes compared to those drivers around him and regularly throwing a spanner in Mclaren/Webber strategy calls.

    [Reply]


  126.   126. Posted By: Rajko
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:29 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Sutil
    Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  127.   127. Posted By: Jeremy J
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:32 pm 

    1/ Vettel – Unstoppable, no one could touch him
    2/ Button – Only person to really pressure Vettel in the races on a consistant basis.
    3/ Rosberg – Outclassed Schumacher, no mean feat.
    4/ Kovalainen – Consistantly outperformed the car
    5/ Alonso – Dragged the car with him kicking and screaming, great result at Silverstone.

    [Reply]


  128.   128. Posted By: Foaad
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:33 pm 

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Button
    Rosberg
    Sutil

    [Reply]


  129.   129. Posted By: andrew.cocos
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:34 pm 

    1. Alonso
    2. Button
    3. Vettel
    4. Kobayashi
    5. Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  130.   130. Posted By: Jon Rapley
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:36 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel

    Vettel has driven at a different level to anyone, getting 110% out of his car, driving smoothly and cleanly, while breaking records and being very cooperative with the press.

    2. Jenson Button

    Canada saw a new era for Jenson Button. Like Vettel, he has been driving smoothly, avoiding trouble while scoring points and podiums consistantly. Lewis Hamilton has also admitted that Jenson has been doing a fantastic job.

    3. Fernando Alonso

    Alonso has been very consitant, very realistic, very fair and has scored around double the points that Felipe Massa has, while having driven a car that hasn’t been particularly good to Ferrari’s standards.

    4. Heikki Kovalainen

    Since The beginning of the season, Kovalainen has outpaced Jarno Trulli in qualifying and most of the races where he had no mechanical problems. As Kovalainen himself explained, he is a lot happier with Team Lotus (to be Caterham from 2012) than with Renault and McLaren. Kovalainen has made it to Q2 or gotten within under a second behind other midfield teams on several occasions in qualifying, while also making brilliant starts and finishing ahead of established teams such as Williams and Sauber, something which started in China and triumphed in Korea. He will be a big threat to the mid-fielders providing Caterham build him a competitive car for 2012.

    5. Jaime Algersuari

    Algersuari didn’t have the greatest start to the season, but when his seat was under threat, he picked his game up, scoring many high points positions since Valencia, while also having beaten Sebastien Buemi in the points standings. Algersuari entered Formula One too early, but now, he is just right for the Formula. Very big improvement.

    [Reply]


  131.   131. Posted By: jeffrey
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:37 pm 

    1- Sebastian Vettel
    2- Jenson Button
    3- Fernando Alonso
    4- Kamui Kobayashi
    5- Michael Schumacher

    [Reply]


  132.   132. Posted By: Rich in Norway
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:38 pm 

    1.Sebastian Vettel
    2. Jenson Button
    3. Fernando Alonso
    4. Jamie Alguseri
    5. Paul di resta

    [Reply]


  133.   133. Posted By: Murray A Nix
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:38 pm 

    1 – Vettel. Even the most hardened cynics can’t argue with statistics and facts.
    2 – di Resta. Rookie of the year. Kept his head down and wrestled the best out of the car and did what he was asked. A future champion.
    3 – Butto. Outshone Hamilton with consistancy, maturity and focus throughout the season to the extent it was easy to question often if they were in the same team/car.
    4 – Rosberg. Personality wise, he annoys me. But this is not a popularity contest after all. He’s constantly outshone Michael and that could never be regarded as an easy feat.
    5 – Toughie. A split decision really. Alonso for his ontrack manouevres and getting the best from an underperforming car that has struggled throughout the year with grip issues and lack of compatibility. Senna for the enthusiasm hs brings to the grid and, of coursd, the namd.

    [Reply]


  134.   134. Posted By: BillC
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:39 pm 

    For me

    1 JB – OK I am a Fan of his since the Williams days and was therefore not worried about his entering the “lions den” but sublime driving, control and strategy – should have won Monaco as well.

    2 SV – Had the best car, but certainly exploited it unlike MW, great chap and comes over very well in interviews, BUT if i hear “that is what I am talking about” “ring a ding ding” or see that F*****g finger one more time I may not be able to restrain myself

    3 FA really great drives and has the ability to get more out of mediocre car than any one else

    4 PdR Great Rookie Season – I predict great things for him – and yes I am a Brit – so sue me.

    5 Now this the tricky one – NH got the points in the early races but did not impress – BS did impress once he took over but did not get the points and HK did a great job for lotus. For me BS gets my 5th Vote..

    MGB

    [Reply]


  135.   135. Posted By: Paul Rodríguez
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:41 pm 

    1. Sebastian – simply flawless
    2. Jenson – beating Lewis must feel sooo good…
    3. Fernando – for never giving up
    4. Heikki – hunger and consistency
    5. Paul Di Resta – Championship material

    [Reply]


  136.   136. Posted By: Arron Timson
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:44 pm 

    1.Button-first team-mate to beat Hamilton
    2.Alonso-Showed his pure talent in a pretty poor car
    3.Vettel-Best car and fully extracted it’s speed
    4.Di Resta-great rookie year,showed his potential
    5.Kovalainen-put Trulli to shame and out performed his car pretty much every race

    [Reply]


  137.   137. Posted By: McKormick
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:45 pm 

    1 Vettel
    2 Alonso
    3 Button
    4 Kovalainen
    5 Kobayashi

    [Reply]


  138.   138. Posted By: Ajit
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:48 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  139.   139. Posted By: Roger Carballo AKA Architrion
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:49 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  140.   140. Posted By: Neil McLaughlin
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:49 pm 

    1 button 2 alonso 3 vettel 4 di resta 5 kovalainen

    [Reply]


  141.   141. Posted By: ronmon
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:50 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    di Resta
    Kobayashi

    [Reply]


  142.   142. Posted By: Phil J
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:52 pm 

    By offering a prize for matching your selections you’re skewing the results, somewhat. My top 5 are:
    Button
    Vettel
    Alonso
    DiResta
    Rosberg

    I think your selection will be more like:
    Vettel
    Alonso
    Button
    Kovalainen
    Sutil

    [Reply]


  143.   143. Posted By: Cole
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:53 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kobayashi
    5. Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  144.   144. Posted By: Steve
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:55 pm 

    For me, it has to be
    1. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Jenson Button
    3. Fernando Alonso
    4. Adrian Sutil
    5. Paul di Resta

    [Reply]


  145.   145. Posted By: Nic Maennling
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:56 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Suti
    Rosberg

    [Reply]


  146.   146. Posted By: Ritesh Tendulkar
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:57 pm 

    1. Vettel: Had a string car but look what Webber did with it.
    2. Button: Made best use of the car and conditions. +1 for Canada
    3. Alonso: Out-performed the car. very strong drives despite tyre heating problems of the Ferrari
    4. Kova: lifted Lotus/ Caterham /whatever it is called now from new backmarkers to a midfield team
    5. Jamie Alguersari

    Special mention; Kobayashi

    [Reply]


  147.   147. Posted By: KGBVD
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:57 pm 

    1. Vettel – Absolutely unmatched
    2. Button – Cooler heads often do prevail
    3. di Resta – Rookie unequalled.
    4. Kobayashi – Matured and worth millions in points to Sauber.
    5. Alonso, – Brilliant on his day, in a Ferrari truck.

    [Reply]


  148.   148. Posted By: Number
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 5:59 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel – RB7 was at the sharo edge every race, but it was him that made the difference when it was needed, so he won some race which he “shoulnt” have (like spain or monaco).

    2. Fernando Alonso – he just never stops. I dont like him as a person, but you gotta admire him as a driver. I know Button had very good season, but Ferrari was weaker car, and Alonso still managed to be quite close.

    3. Jenson Button – I found this season to be his best since 2004. While watching races, he something looks just smarter than rest. He drove smart whole season.

    4. Heikki Kovalainen – After those 2 bad seasons with McLaren, Kov is driving that Lotus (Caterham) really good. Also managed to outqualify a Williams!

    5. Adrian Sutil – mr. Sutil had a slow start to a season, had some trouble with broken glasses and human necks, but he drove really really good in 2nd half.

    So thats my top 5, but that being said, the standard of driving is really high in most teams. On the whole, Torro Rosso, Sauber and Force India have got really good drivers. Ill be sad if Jaime or Seb have to go from TR…they drove really good, a shame that mr. Buemi didnt have much luck lately.

    [Reply]


  149.   149. Posted By: Adeel Mehboob
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:05 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  150.   150. Posted By: Greg
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:05 pm 

    vettel
    alonso
    button
    sutil
    alguersari

    [Reply]


  151.   151. Posted By: Ed
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:06 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Perez
    5. Di Resta

    [Reply]


  152.   152. Posted By: Bennio
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:07 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel – Had the best car, but was consistently fast and made the fewest mistakes.

    2. Jenson Button – Made some mistakes in qualification, but more than made up for it during the races. A very impressive season.

    3. Fernando Alonso – Made very few mistakes and pushed the car to 100%. Did some amazing starts.

    4. Lewis Hamilton – Had a slump during the latter half of the season, but also won 3 races and ended the season on a high.

    5. Nico Rosberg – Did what he could in this year’s Mercedes and drove solidly. Sometimes slower than Schumi but made fewer mistakes.

    Honorary mention – Heikki Kovalainen. Crushed his team mate during qualification and drove impressively during the races.

    [Reply]


  153.   153. Posted By: mohamed south africa
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:08 pm 

    1.vettel
    2.button
    3.alonso
    4.di resta
    5.hamilton

    [Reply]


  154.   154. Posted By: Dan
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:11 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Di Resta
    Kovalainen

    [Reply]

    Dan Reply:

    1. Vettel – Fantastically consistent and exceptionally fast driving – the best car alone doesn’t tell the story as he destroyed Webber
    2. Button – Seems to have reached a happy place with his driving. Not as quick on a single lap as Hamilton (generally) but race pace has been very good.
    3. Alonso – Outperformed an under par car
    4. Di Resta – Good rookie season
    5. Kovalainen – Showed his quality, hope he gets a car capable of pushing on next year

    [Reply]


  155.   155. Posted By: GS
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:12 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Sutil
    5. Alguesuari

    [Reply]


  156.   156. Posted By: Arcturis
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:12 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Di Resta

    [Reply]


  157.   157. Posted By: Chris
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:12 pm 

    1) Sebstian Vettel
    2) Fernando Alonso
    3) Jenson Button
    4) Nico Rosberg
    5) Adrian Sutil

    [Reply]


  158.   158. Posted By: Adam
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:13 pm 

    1. Jenson Button
    Beat a better car (Webber’s Red Bull) and supposedly better driver (Hamilton). Classy, consistent, and surprisingly quick all season.
    2. Sebastien Vettel
    Even with the best car, you cannot ignore the dominance over his team mate, and his qualifying performances.
    5. Fernando Alonso
    Beat a better car (Hamilton’s McLaren) and dominated his team mate.
    4. Paul Di Resta
    Rookie of the year. Sutil scored more points, but Paul was on the pace from the start and got some great results.
    5. Heikki Kovalainen
    Dominated his experienced team mate and impressed with his energy and enthusiasm at the back of the grid.

    Special mentions also for Perez, d’Ambrosio, Sutil, Alguersuari.

    [Reply]


  159.   159. Posted By: Jit
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:13 pm 

    1. Vettel – didn’t put a foot wrong, proved he could race as well as drive very fast. A truly magnificent season.

    2. Button – super consistent and improved his qualifying pace over last year. Always making up positions in the race with some exceptional overtaking. His wins Canada, Hungry and Japan show he is part of the elite in F1.

    3. Alonso – again so consistent always getting the most from his car. Beat Massa comprehensively and made the most of the opportunities given, and less errors than last year.

    4. Kovalainen – although we didn’t see much from Heikki I think he always got the most out of his lotus beating Jarno (a qualifying master) 15-2 in qualifying and making some superb starts.

    5. Hamilton – Some of his wins, (china, germany) were amazing and always fast in qualifying. But some unlucky collisions (some were his fault) and lack of attention on track let his mid-season down. Think he will come back stronger next year.

    Mentions to Sutil for a great end to the season to finish 9th, if only his early season was so good. Also Kobayashi for a superb start to the season but faded near the end. I think we also found two great rookies in Di resta and Perez who showed they have very bright futures in F1. Cant wait for next year!

    [Reply]


  160.   160. Posted By: Gav
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:13 pm 

    seb vettel
    jenson button
    fernando alonso
    paul di resta
    Nico Rosberg

    [Reply]


  161.   161. Posted By: Matt
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:14 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  162.   162. Posted By: K
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:14 pm 

    Vettel, Alonso, Button, Kobayashi, Sutil and Alguesuari.

    Rest did nothing spectacular.

    [Reply]


  163.   163. Posted By: Robert Lujan
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:14 pm 

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

    [Reply]

    Andy Reply:

    Sutil?

    [Reply]

    Robert Lujan Reply:

    Hoping against hope I think. I really hope he can do well in F1 and not just be a middle fielder. I mean the man plays classical piano and very well I have seen!

    [Reply]


  164.   164. Posted By: Tom
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:17 pm 

    1. Vettel

    2. Button

    3. Alonso

    4. Alguersuari

    5. Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  165.   165. Posted By: Maneesh
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:18 pm 

    1) Button (consistent , a thinking driver , stepped up his game )
    2) Vettel (totally dominated in the best car on the grid)
    3)Alonso (made ferrari look faster than it was)
    4) sutil(though not good in the first half of the season, but got around 40 odd points in the last 10 races , nearly caught renault)
    5) Schumi (bad in qualifying but still one of the best racers out there)

    [Reply]


  166.   166. Posted By: Luke Potter
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:19 pm 

    1. Button
    2. Vettel
    3. Alonso
    4. Schumacher
    5. Sutil

    [Reply]


  167.   167. Posted By: Lilla My
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:20 pm 

    Top three is easy. The other two drivers are much more difficult to pick IMHO.

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Button
    4. di Resta
    5. Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  168.   168. Posted By: AlexOfAlexia
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:21 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Rosberg
    Alguersuari
    Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  169.   169. Posted By: AdrianP
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:26 pm 

    Top three are clear but the order is very difficult: top three VET, BUT, ALO. All of them got the maximum out of the car, were consistent and trounced their teammates in terms of points.
    How to separate them. VET slipped up under pressure in Canada. BUT made almost no mistakes. I don’t remember any mistakes from ALO. BUT transcended the car in Canada. VET invariably awesome in qualifying (still convinced the Red Bull have some special Q3 trick). BUT below par in qualifying. ALO always there or thereabouts. I’m going to go for

    1. BUT (flawless season, with some real stand-out moments and basically the best wet dry/wet driver out there)
    2. ALO (again flawless season, sometimes transcended the car, always gets the maximum day-in-day-out)
    3. VET (superb qualifying and made the best of the best car, consistent, but rarely pressured)

    For the last two slots:

    4. SUT

    and

    5. KOV

    [Reply]


  170.   170. Posted By: Josiah
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:28 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    5. DiResta
    6. Schumacher

    [Reply]


  171.   171. Posted By: Pip bowers
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:28 pm 

    Button
    Webber
    Schumacher
    Di resta
    Hekki

    [Reply]


  172.   172. Posted By: TJS
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:32 pm 

    in a season where it was even more about the car (few people finished more than 1-2 places away from where they should, given the constructors order), i’d have to say:

    1. vettel – made it look way too easy, when it absolutely is not
    2. alonso – to score 4th or better in 15 races, driving the 3rd best car is incredible
    3. button – made the most of his teammate’s misfortunes
    4. kobayashi – scrappy, but some amazing racing at times
    5. alguesuari – nice consistency in races to slowly gather points

    [Reply]


  173.   173. Posted By: Neil Jenney
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:35 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  174.   174. Posted By: Paul Lewis
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:37 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Sutil
    Di Resta

    [Reply]


  175.   175. Posted By: Lea
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:38 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Button
    4. Di Resta
    5. Senna

    [Reply]


  176.   176. Posted By: alexbookoo
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:42 pm 

    1 Vettel
    2 Button
    3 Alonso
    4 Alguersuari
    5 Ricciardo

    I admire Ricciardo and Senna for coming in half way through and being able to perform in a situation where many others have failed.

    I think Sutil and Di Resta did well but the Force India was quite quick by the end and they weren’t spectacular. Alguersuari, on the other hand, pulled out some extraordinary races. Alonso was consistently quality, Button surpassed himself, but no one can deny Vettel’s dominance.

    [Reply]


  177.   177. Posted By: Sakai
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:42 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  178.   178. Posted By: Gannet
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:43 pm 

    1) Vettel
    2) Button
    3) Alonso
    4) Kovalainen
    5) Di Resta

    [Reply]


  179.   179. Posted By: betpusher
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:43 pm 

    1 – Button
    adapted to new Pirellis in 2 minutes after tests start, gorgeous mind, great overtaker, smooth driver, critic-conditions-master. The one who could overwhelm that team-mate. No way, he’s been number one this year. MIND.

    2- Vettel
    Almost Perfect. On an aeromobile. In the History now for having cracked Monza again. In that way. KYNKY.

    3- Alonso
    Things change, tyre change, rules change, style of driving HAS to change.
    And even with a bad-born car he’s always there. MAN-OVER-MACHINE.

    4- Perez Mendoza
    Is not easy go so faster in qualyfing more than that team-mate and at same time be gentle on tyres so to plan 1pit strategy. Monaco could have been very interesting with checo in. FUTURE.

    5- Alguersuari
    For beeing with his tororosso the mirror of a Season in which a race-pace-setup could overturn everything you see in qualyfing. DIDACTIC

    [Reply]


  180.   180. Posted By: Sergio
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:48 pm 

    1.- Alonso. McLaren had the second best car. If you know about F1 and you can imagine the Spaniard, not in a RB but in a Mp4-26b, you can bet that Vettel “walk in the park season” would be another story. Something like “Running and sweating in the park”.
    2.- Vettel. Excellent season. Everything under control and no mistakes at all. Germanic precision. However I m one of those people who thinks Webber has been deactivated by Marko & Horner.
    3.- Button. The perfect measure of a team. You get all that you have.
    4.- Kovalainen. If Kovy had 10% of “sex appeal” of Kimi Raikkonenn, probably he would be fighting for the top. His Macca season with a clear n1 as a team mate ruined his career.
    5.- Alguersuari. He is 21 and he has proven to withstand the pressure better than more experienced drivers. Jaime has had more pressure this year than the World Champion…and he has beaten Buemi.

    [Reply]


  181.   181. Posted By: Michael S
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:50 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Di Resta
    Kovalinan

    [Reply]


  182.   182. Posted By: Jamie Green
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:50 pm 

    1. VETTEL – Who else?? What a fantastic year from a fantastic driver. Best car or not, he has been outstanding this year. One of the best single lap qualifiers of all time, IMO. And a top top guy.

    2. BUTTON – He may lack the speed over one lap and he is very sensitive to car setup but as a racer, he is brilliant especially in change-able conditions. No-one thought he’d out score and out perform Lewis.

    3. ALGUERSUARI – Next 3 places could go either way! Everyone doubted him when he made his debut at Suzuka in 2009, but he has shown this year he’s the real deal. A slightly shaky start where he was out-performed by Buemi, but an awesome end to the season. A future driver at Red Bull IMO.

    4. ALONSO – Mr Consistency. Give Alonso any car, he’ll perform to a consistantly high level. Came very close last year doing just that. Outperformed Massa comprehensively in almost every race. He looks at home with the Scuderia. As a Vettel fan, I think Fernando is the one who can spoil a treble next year!!

    5. DI RESTA – Extremely difficult to choose a 5th driver as there are several candidates! I’ve given the place to Paul, due to his very mature 1st year in the sport. Sutil is definitely no push over and even although he finished behind him in the standings, he’s proven to be a very tough test all year for his more experienced team mate. And, Paul and I are from the same town in Scotland!!

    [Reply]


  183.   183. Posted By: MrAngry83
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:53 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  184.   184. Posted By: Mark Rodway
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:55 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel. Almost certainly the best car, but superb controlled aggression to deliver an almost unblemished season.

    2. Jenson Button. Came out a convincing winner in the Mclaren garage and surprised a few people this year with his pace and consistency to be considered a genuine top tier driver.

    3. Fernando Alonso. Always there, even with a car disadvantage. Super quick and solid.

    4. Paul di Resta. Quick and solid rookie season.

    5. Adrian Sutil. Responded well to the serious threat of Di Resta to come on strong and prove his worth in the second half of the season.

    [Reply]


  185.   185. Posted By: David A
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:57 pm 

    1. Vettel – anyone who didn’t put him here is kidding themselves

    2. Alonso
    3. Button
    4. Rosberg
    5. Hamilton

    [Reply]


  186.   186. Posted By: sammy
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:57 pm 

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Button
    Rosberg
    Di Resta

    [Reply]


  187.   187. Posted By: Arjen
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 6:59 pm 

    Sebastian Vettel
    Jenson Button
    Fernando Alonso
    Paul di Resta
    Heikki Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  188.   188. Posted By: John Bob
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:00 pm 

    1 – Vettel – Just for his near complete dominance. Had huge luck at points, but he always put himself in the right place at the right time to get that luck with his near endless stream of pole positions.

    2 – Button – As the only person to really give Vettel a consistent challenge in the second half of the season. If he can sort out qualifying next year, he could be a big contender for a 2nd WDC.

    3 – Alonso – Consistently out drove his car, race in race out. To be regularly battling with Webber in a much slower car just shows.

    4 – Kovalainen – As with Alonso, he out did his car. Breaking into Q2 a couple of times, and also getting some great starts before the lack of pace saw him drop back. If Caterham can give him a decent car, I expect points in 2012.

    5 – Di Resta – Possibly the best rookie from the last two seasons. Had a dry patch after the first two races, but aside from that matched up quite well to Sutil, and helped to chase and very nearly catch Renault.

    [Reply]


  189.   189. Posted By: Grant
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:01 pm 

    1. Vettel – At first I had a hard time liking him this year since he was so unbeatable but when the dust settled I have to tip my hat to a truly gifted and dedicated driver

    2. Button – Consistent and persistent. He is always able to make the best of any driving condition or car malfunctions. He has a controlled attitude and is just a really likable guy

    3. Alonso – Will always push to get more out of himself and his car even when the odds seem impossible

    4. di Resta – Great rookie year showing dedication and building consistency.

    5. Schumacher – After all the pre-season talk he arrived with a fizzle but managed to come roaring back showing that despite his advancing years he is still competitive. He made for some very interesting races this year.

    [Reply]


  190.   190. Posted By: grigved
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:03 pm 

    my top five ..
    1 Sebastian Vettel
    2 Jenson Button
    3 Fernando Alonso
    4 Paul Diresta
    5 Nico Rosberg

    [Reply]


  191.   191. Posted By: Tiga
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:03 pm 

    1. Vettel (obvious)
    2. Button (got the best possible result out of every situation)
    3. Sutil (under-rated, most successful of the non-big-team drivers by a margin)
    4. Perez (Quick out of the box for a rookie)
    5. Alonso (always got on with the job with what he had and surprisingly in contention by great race-craft)

    [Reply]


  192.   192. Posted By: Andy
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:03 pm 

    1. Vettel, world champion, complete domination.

    2. Button, surprise of the year as far as front runners go, there weren’t many who thought he would beat Hamilton. Ahead of Alonso because two more victories.

    3. Alonso, was way ahead of his team mate, the first comparison point. Took everything out of his car.

    4. Kovalainen, destroyed his team mate even more thoroughly than Alonso. The only driver for the new teams who was able to put at least some pressure to the more established teams.

    5. Rosberg, still better than the 7xWDC, what better measure of skills is there.

    [Reply]


  193.   193. Posted By: PasqualeMendiza
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:03 pm 

    1. Vettel (for utter domination, nobody else can possibly be put ahead of him, regardless of the machinery he was in)
    2. Alonso (for being so close to Button and Webber, in an inferior car)
    3. Button (for besting Hamilton, and Webber in a much better car)
    4. Kovalainen (for being so far ahead of the other ‘bottom 6′ drivers, and consistently outstanding qualifying/starts)
    5. Rosberg (for consistent qualifying performances, and regularly getting the car finishing as high as he could)

    [Reply]


  194.   194. Posted By: Inder
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:03 pm 

    1) Vettel
    2) Button
    3) Alonso
    4) Kovalainen
    5) Di Resta

    [Reply]


  195.   195. Posted By: grigved
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:07 pm 

    James which is your favorite race this season ?

    [Reply]

    James Allen Reply:

    Canada was great, Spain was very tense at the end, I think Japan was great too. Monza was pretty special

    [Reply]

    Aussie Rod Reply:

    …um, China and Turkey?

    [Reply]


  196.   196. Posted By: Richie
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:08 pm 

    1 – Vettel
    2 – Button
    3 – Alonso
    4 – Di Resta
    5 – Rosberg

    [Reply]


  197.   197. Posted By: Jose Arellano
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:11 pm 

    5.- Kovalainen
    As tony said “The team has brought out the best of him”

    4.-Alguersuari
    From Q1 to points finish

    3.-Alonso
    Extracting water out of stones (mexican proverb)

    2.-Button
    Beat Hamilton. positioned himself pretty well in Mclaren

    1.-Vettel
    Pole position record. 122 points cushion.

    [Reply]


  198.   198. Posted By: Mario
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:11 pm 

    1. Vettel – best car yes by a mile but he still put Webber in the shade by a big margin
    2. Alonso – third best car yet wrung the life out of it and made Massa look clumsy
    3. Button – close call with Alonso but his tire management was extraordinary
    4. Hamilton – should have done better with his car
    5. Sutil – he proved his worth his worth in F1
    6. Buemi – the pass master was exceptional albeit too far back to make a splash
    7. Rosberg – made the most of his car and made Schumacher look his age
    8. Webber – should have done much better, Vettel coped with the Pirellis, so should have he
    9. Perez – quite the impression this rookie made at times
    10. Kovy – earned his place at Lotus and really made Trulli look bad at times

    [Reply]


  199.   199. Posted By: Dom
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:12 pm 

    1. Vettel – makes it look too easy. Would be good if he and Alonso’s careers at Ferrari overlaped
    2. Alonso – extremely good race pace from the Fezza.
    3. Button – drove brilliantly all season – I didn’t think he had it in him but I stand corrected. I still think each Mclaren driver showed up the others inconsistancy over the year and demonstrated why Vettel is so good but fair play to Jenson for beating Lewis fair and square.
    4. Kovalainen – some brilliant races – reminded me of his pre-Mclaren form
    5. Di Resta – rookie of the year.

    Hon mention: Hamilton – brilliant on his day but there weren’t all that many and so many incidents.

    [Reply]


  200.   200. Posted By: nick
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:13 pm 

    1.Vettel
    2.Alonso
    3.Button
    4.Kovalainen
    5.Alguersuari

    [Reply]


  201.   201. Posted By: Alex_D
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:13 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  202.   202. Posted By: Werewolf
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:15 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel. Imperious all season and never looked likely to fail. Top car but utter dominance of team mate Webber showed true speed.

    2. Fernando Alonso. Always on it and destroyed team mate Massa, adding further weight to the belief he out-performed a mediocre machine.

    3. Jenson Button. Some great performances and much improved consistency latterly to shade the quicker but less thoughtful and more erratic Hamilton.

    4. Jaime Alguersari. Several great drives from disadvantageous grid positions and a new-found maturity. The season’s most improved driver.

    5. Heikki Kovalainen. Emerged very much as team leader, showing top form in races and qualifying, significantly reducing Trulli’s market value in the process. Great strength and team spirit from a driver in a tricky position.

    [Reply]


  203.   203. Posted By: Yew Liang
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:18 pm 

    1) Vettel
    2) Button
    3) Alonso
    4) Sutil
    5) Heikki

    [Reply]


  204.   204. Posted By: Felipe Massa
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:18 pm 

    1. Lewis Hamilton

    For sure I voted my hero Lewis for his non aggressive style of driving and for sure I will now win JA’s signed book and next year the hearts of the tifosi when I for sure beat Alonso and for sure I don’t know why I keep saying for sure.

    [Reply]

    build Reply:

    You forgot “To be honest” … among others.

    ;-)

    [Reply]


  205.   205. Posted By: B Martin
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:18 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Hamilton
    (for fun) 6. Heidfeld (points per race much higher than teammate)

    [Reply]


  206.   206. Posted By: terryshep
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:19 pm 

    The top three choose themselves: Vettel, Button, Alonso. The difficult part is the next two.

    I don’t know how to decide whether a driver is doing more than the car, we don’t really know exactly how good or bad any car is. We tend to judge them on where they appear to be against their peers. Consequently, it’s hard to judge Nico Rosberg properly. I feel that this is a driver with great potential but I can’t tell if he has simply done a steady job this year, or risen above the car.

    That’s just one example, has Algersuari simply extracted the full performance from his car, as he is hired to do, or has he done something remarkable?

    I think racers tend to drive or ride as hard as they can, they want to beat everybody in sight, so I’m going to assume that Adrian Sutil was driving a well developed car and getting the best out of it in the later races, rather than advertising his abilities. So, my pick is:

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Sutil
    Kovaleinen

    [Reply]


  207.   207. Posted By: Ben Arellano
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:22 pm 

    1. Button.
    2. Alonso
    3. Vettel
    4. Sutil
    5. Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  208.   208. Posted By: Nazdakka
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:23 pm 

    Seb Vettel
    Jenson Button
    Paul Di Resta
    Heikki Kovalainen
    Kamui Kobayashi

    [Reply]


  209.   209. Posted By: Thejesh
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:26 pm 

    Vettle – Made others to know how worthy champion he was by dominating the entire season with Great WINS and RECORD POLE positions.

    Jenson – Whenever there were opportunities arise he was there to pick those precious WINS

    Alonso – Won race with an AVERAGE car which was no where had the performance of PODIUM finish

    Sutil – He showed lot of maturity in his drive. Will be a good assest to the team and can be WORTHY CHAMPION if right package is given

    Kovalanin – Consistent & Improving performance by this guy. Next year he will take the fight to Mid fielders

    [Reply]


  210.   210. Posted By: Ralph
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:29 pm 

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

    James, are you asking for our top 5, or to guess your top 5?

    If it’s the former, you might be unintentionally weighting the fan’s preference, some of whom might be trying to second guess your preference.

    [Reply]

    James Allen Reply:

    As I said, tell us what you think – you can do both if your top five is different from what you think mine will be

    [Reply]


  211.   211. Posted By: PASQ
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:29 pm 

    1. VETTEL, near perfect, make best use of car and comfortably beat team mate.
    2. ALONSO, outperformed car and team mate, if had got second in championship, one of the most incredible achievements I’ve seen in last 20 years of following F1.
    3. BUTTON, outperformed Hamilton, no mean feat! Great calculating wins with second best car.
    4. ROSBERG, very difficult to gauge, but did well against a truly formidable driver in same car.
    5. KOVALAINEN, incredible desire and commitment to a near impossible job, but out qualifying trulli on so many occasions should not go unnoticed.

    [Reply]


  212.   212. Posted By: Eric
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:32 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Rosberg
    Hamilton

    [Reply]


  213.   213. Posted By: David B
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:38 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  214.   214. Posted By: Damian Renolds
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:39 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Button
    4. Sutil
    5. Buemi

    [Reply]


  215.   215. Posted By: Dan
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:41 pm 

    Vettel – magical ability to find crucial tenths on Saturday, bossed the majority of Sunday’s races. Fast car or not displayed qualities of a champ time and time again.

    Di Resta – rookie performance of the year. Closely matched his vastly more experienced team mate despite frequently running sub-optimal strategies.

    Kovalainen – Applied real pressure to the midfield teams all season, pushing them in both races and qualifying. Relishing the responsibility of transforming Caterham to contending team.

    Button – clearly in the form of his life. Able to match the still impressive single lap pace of Hamilton and was able to deliver the race pace of the McLaren more consistently.

    Alguesuari – must’ve been under immense pressure half way through season yet maintained composure and delivered the goods on Sunday

    [Reply]

    Kal Reply:

    I don’t know what season you British fans are watching but Di Resta was anything but close to matching Sutil. He was easily beaten in most races.

    People around the world say Perez was the rookie of the season and DI Resta was nothing special, especially considering having the best car out of the rookies.

    [Reply]

    madmax Reply:

    100% agree Kal. Can people who voted Di Resta just take 5 minutes to look up how he did against Sutil over the season then compare how Perez or Riccardo did against their team mates.

    [Reply]

    Dan Reply:

    Opinions are like iPhones; everyone’s got one ;) .

    As I said in my initial assessment, Di Resta quite often was on a less than optimal tyre strategy compared to Sutil. Sutil has also been around for more than a few years and should be pretty comfortable driving that FI by now. I actually think Sutil had a decent season as he’s flattered to deceive in recent years.

    I also think Di Resta has had to deal with the pressure of expectation to a greater extent than Ricciardo and (less so) Perez. Force India were a contender team and results were expected from Di Resta from the off. In my eyes he delivered with a number of incredibly mature drives.


  216.   216. Posted By: Kenton Corey
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:41 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  217.   217. Posted By: Sam White
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:47 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  218.   218. Posted By: Adil Desai
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:47 pm 

    1. Button
    2. Vettel
    3. Alonso
    4. DiResta
    5. Perez

    [Reply]


  219.   219. Posted By: Alexander
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:48 pm 

    Vettel, Button, Alonso, Alguersuari, Sutil.

    Top three are pretty self explanatory, Jaime did real well despite the pressure of racing for his job. Toss-up between Sutil and Kovalainen, went with Adrian for no particular reason. Kamui might be considered, but his mid-season was probably too mediocre to make the top 5.

    [Reply]


  220.   220. Posted By: Perdunoff
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:50 pm 

    1. Pedro de la Rosa (for his heroics in Canada)

    2. Tonio Liuzzi (also for his heroics in Canada)

    3. Jérôme D’Ambrosio (a cool customer)

    4. Sergio Perez (not bad at all)

    5. Rubens Barrichello (for trying hard, still, quitting in 2009 after a couple of wins would’ve been better; I remember how he said a few harsh words about Irvine back in 2002, at least Edmund finished his F1 adventure with a podium).

    The rest I didn’t follow.

    [Reply]


  221.   221. Posted By: Hitul Mistry
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:51 pm 

    1. vettel
    2. button
    3. alonso
    4. perez
    5. di resta

    [Reply]


  222.   222. Posted By: Stuart Harrison
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:51 pm 

    Wow, I don’t envy you the task of collating all the entries! Good luck with that!

    My top five drivers of 2011, chosen primarily for entertainment value and producing exciting racing.

    1, Button – Had a fairly average start to the year but kept things clean with his team mate and drove some excellent races in the latter half of the year to prove 2009 wasn’t just a flash in the pan.

    2, Hamilton – Ever the entertainer, fighting for every scrap of tarmac, who started with a great season, pretty much the only driver to take the fight to Red Bull but suffered in tangles with Massa, but bounced back in the last few races.

    3, Vettel – The man you love to hate! Drove a pretty much faultless season, but the lack of any serious competition leaves people in doubt over whether he can actually race if put amongst traffic.

    4, Alonso – Some sublime starts from him in Spain and Italy helped flatter a car that was by no means a front runner; Alonso’s pure driver ability put him where his car could not.

    5, Alguersuari – Inconsistent, but often placed his car in the points after terrible qualifying sessions. Deserves honourable mention!

    [Reply]

    David A Reply:

    Hamilton ahead of Vettel and Alonso? Which season were you watching?

    [Reply]

    Stuart Harrison Reply:

    As mentioned at the top of the piece, I ranked by entertainment value. We barely saw Vettel on the TV coverage other than the first and last laps of the race. To me, that’s pretty much zero entertainment value whichever way you cut it. Hamilton, on the other hand, produced edge of the seat racing in just about every Grand Prix even with some questionable moves arising as a result.

    If you want to rank by performance, then just go by the championship standings and there won’t be any debate! But for me, regardless of Vettel’s dominance of the season, he doesn’t deserve as much credit as those who brought genuine joy to my F1 weekends, which this year was Hamilton and Button. They are the stand-out drivers of the season, pulling something out of the bag when you least expected it – Hamilton in China is one of the finest GP wins, I never cease tiring of watching that GP again. And Button in Canada produced one of the most nail-biting races in history. How can Vettel hope to top that? I’d argue he can’t. Certainly not this season.

    When one driver or one team is utterly dominant it isn’t “fun” to watch as a partisan observer. What makes sport interesting is a close match – a slight mistake or flash of genius making the difference between winning and losing. For me, Hamilton provides a never-ending stream of both and that’s why he ranks at the top of the list for me this year (and just about every year he’s been in F1). Vettel on the other hand is just consistently good, which for me equates to consistently boring.

    All IMHO :)

    [Reply]

    David A Reply:

    Ok, though there is a huge difference between being entertaining and being the best- which Hamilton certainly wasn’t.

    Stuart Harrison Reply:

    But it’s impossible to say who was the best when they’re not in equal machinery (or with the same team – I’m sure strategists and pit crew have noticeable impact on results).

    The only way you can judge who is “best” is to give them all identical conditions to race in, which you’re never going to get even taking turns on an empty track (wind conditions might change between two runs, or later runs get the benefit of the extra rubber put down).

    So what it boils down to (for me anyway) is who is it that brings you back week after week to keep watching? For me, this year at least, the McLaren duo of Button and Hamilton produced far more entertainment than the rest of the field put together. All Vettel did for 95% of the seasons was “Start in front, stay in front, cross the line first” which is all very skilful but about as dull as watching paint dry.

    This is a sport, derived (if you want to take it that far back) from Gladiatorial combats in ancient Rome, the purpose of which was to entertain the masses. Button and Hamilton were this year’s best entertainers. Hence, best sportsmen. Hence, best drivers. QED.

    This sport would be terminally dull if everyone finished the race in their starting positions, without any overtaking, any mistakes in the pit-stops, any mechanical failures. No-one would watch on Sunday as the race would be over on Saturday. So, why do we watch on Sunday? To see how the race unfolds – to see overtaking, to see people fighting for positions, pushing the car beyond the limits of mechanical and aerodynamic grip, to achieve what mere mortal spectator can only dream of. To be entertained. Vettel is not entertaining! His achievements this year rank him among the greatest drivers of all time (if not the best in terms of skill alone, this remains to be seen), but that doesn’t make him entertaining. In fact, it harks back to the Schumacher era when I stopped watching F1 as the races became too predictable and the season was over halfway through. I really don’t want to go back there, so I’m backing the two drivers who managed to take multiple victories off Vettel this year.

    If Vettel is the best – then surely someone who can beat him in inferior technology is better?

    Sorry, that got quite long :)

    [Reply]

    David A Reply:

    While I am aware of the entertainment factor of F1 and other sports, the other important factor is winning (or getting the best result possible). After all, they don’t show up just to have a good time. Hence I still believe there is a big difference between being the “most entertaining” and being “the best”.

    In football for instance, Blackpool were considered an entertaining team in the Premier league. They entertained with plenty of high scoring games. But they finished 19th and got relegated. I considered them to be one of the most entertaining teams to watch, but not one of “the best”. The two factors are separable.

    Sure, the Mclaren drivers have been entertaining. Like Canada for instance. But a lot of people tune in with the question “who can stop Vettel?”. I think that if you’re so likely to win that people need to think like that, or celebrate when he gets a puncture, then you’re the best. Which I think Vettel has been this year.

    No need to apologise, debate is healthy” :)


  223.   223. Posted By: Craig Taylor
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:53 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Schumacher
    5. Di Resta

    [Reply]


  224.   224. Posted By: Rupert Berrington
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:53 pm 

    1) Sebastian Vettel – Can’t deny his record setting performance. He made the best car look better and destroyed his teammate by 134 points.

    2) Fernando Alonso – Best combination of talent, aggression and brains in the third best car. Dominated his teammate by 139 points, even more then Vettel. Dragged his car to places it did not belong. Let down by poor Ferrari strategy and slow pit stops as well.

    3) Jenson Button – His star has risen greatly this season. Smooth, cool and consistent. Beat his all star teammate.

    4) Lewis Hamilton – Despite making some major mistakes during aggressive pass attempts he had 3 wins. 6 podiums. 2nd fastest in qualifying. If he gets his head back to together he could go straight back to #1.

    5) Heikki Kovalainen – The World Champion of the new teams, dominated in that class as Vettel did with the established teams.
    _____________________________
    6) Nico Rosberg
    7) Michael Schumacher
    8) Adrian Sutil
    9) Paul di Resta
    10) Kamui Kobayashi

    Sad to say but it is time to retire:
    Webber, Massa, Trulli, Barrichello

    [Reply]


  225.   225. Posted By: Ian
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:54 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Di Resta
    5. Alguersuari

    [Reply]


  226.   226. Posted By: Lade
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 7:57 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Button
    4. Nico
    5. Alguesuari

    [Reply]


  227.   227. Posted By: Richard D
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:00 pm 

    1. Vettel – Barely put a foot wrong all season. Can’t just be the car; look at Webber’s results.
    2. Di Resta – Good solid rookie performance.
    3. Button – Not too hot on qualifying but has shown his skill at overtaking.
    4. Algesari – Has brought the Torro Rosso home with some unexpected results.
    5. Alonso – Has been up the front challenging despite the Ferrari being a bit of a dog.

    [Reply]


  228.   228. Posted By: VV
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:00 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  229.   229. Posted By: Luke Hornsby
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:05 pm 

    1) Vettel

    2) Button

    3) Alonso

    4) Sutil

    5) Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  230.   230. Posted By: simon whishaw
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:05 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  231.   231. Posted By: Bruce
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:06 pm 

    1. Button
    2. Alonso
    3. Vettel
    4. Di Resta
    5. Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  232.   232. Posted By: Gregory
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:07 pm 

    1. Trulli
    2. Trulli
    3. Trulli
    4. Trulli
    5. Trulli

    [Reply]


  233.   233. Posted By: christos pallis
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:08 pm 

    Okay this is really hard this season. Top three i think are a given and in that order also pretty much a no brainer but the rest of the few good drivers are all with very up and down seasons.

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso

    Then its not so simple

    Hamilton although incoinsistent did win some races in a car not as good as a redbull and boy does he try.

    Kovelinen had a great season but is in a back of the grid car so how much does that actually show us.

    Rosberg was anonymous this year but always punching in results.

    Derista and Sutil were both great at times in a car that justifed where they were performing i.e. not really outstanding.

    Perez showed potential and some good performances.

    Soooooo
    4. Hamilton
    5. Kovelinen

    it’s a real tuffy this year

    Thanks James for all your articles this year, i love this site. Best and most well informed on the web. Plus thanks to the other people who comment, some really good insight and points raised through the season.

    Thank you

    [Reply]


  234.   234. Posted By: Mark Payne
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:19 pm 

    1 Sebastien Vettel – He outdrove an already excellent car and made most races secure within the opening 5 laps. A deserved world champion.
    2 Jenson Button – Outperforming Lewis Hamilton consistently in the same car is no mean feat, even if Lewis was poor. The only man who came close to halting Vettel’s charge.
    3 Fernando Alonso – Given the relative weakness of the 2011 Ferrari Alonso’s 10 podiums and victory at Silverstone highlight his quality.
    4 Nico Rosberg – Another strong campaign from Rosberg. Incredibly consistent only two retirements and two non-points finishes where he finishes (where he finished 12th and 11th twice).
    5 Paul Di Resta – Easily the best rookie this season, he’ll need to avoid a rocky mid-season next year if he gets a deserved second year with Force India though.

    [Reply]


  235.   235. Posted By: Andy
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:21 pm 

    1. Vettel – thrashed a good team mate in the best car, bit like Mansell caning Patrese in 92, but better! His starts and opening laps were the stuff of legends, utterly soul destroying for his opposition.

    2. Alonso – hardly ever had a bad moment or a lacklustre performance this year, always got the max out the car, constantly on it, amazing starts, impressive to the end.

    3. Button – shaded by Alonso because although Button had a great year, he was still found wanting on a few occasions earlier in the year, unlike Alonso IMHO.

    4. Kovalainen – never gave up, always fast in a slow car, beat the once great qualifier Trulli comprehensively. Despite being in a new team, he was always committed and delivered everything he could.

    5 Hamilton – although some drivers had much more consistent seasons, Ham still won 3 races and his highs still set him apart from many of the rather merely good drivers.

    [Reply]


  236.   236. Posted By: Ben
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:26 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    He may have had the best car, particularly one designed to dominate in qualifying, but it takes a dominating performance to achieve 11/19 wins, and only one finish off of the podium.

    In the same car, his competent team mate finished – on average – 2 places behind him and only beat him once. He had the second best performance of a driver against his team mate of the entire field, when judged by finishing position. When you consider the calibre of Webber, and the perforamce advantage their package had over the field, that statistic is mightily impressive.

    Only the very best drivers in the history of the sport have achieved seasons like this, and as a result there is no contest for this position.

    2. Fernando Alonso
    I suspect the vast majority will award JB this position, however Alonso flattered the car he was driving. He achieved 10 podium finishes, one more than Webber who was driving a much faster car and only one less than Button who was driving a car that had better race pace in the majority of the races. His drive in Abu Dhabi stands out as one of the greatest of the season, he had no business finishing ahead of Button or Webber in that race much less preventing Hamilton from having an easy afternoon.

    The other thing to consider is his performance against his team mate. Alonso obliterated Massa this year, yes, some of that is down to Massa’s poor form but that oly accounts for half of it. Alonso finished an average of 3 places ahead of Massa, this is higher than any other driver pairing, for the majority of the field, it was less than a 1.5 place average difference. What is more significant is the gap beneath the Ferrari to Mercedes. Ferrari was the slowest of the three front running teams, yet the team behind they did not trouble them. This meant, to finish an average of 3 places ahead of Massa, Alonso routinely had to finish ahead of faster McLarens and/or Red Bulls.

    3. Heikki Kovalainen
    While Team Lotus were the only new team to make a significant step forward this year, the gap to the field – particularly in qualifying – was still significant, which only makes the qualifying achievements of Heikki Kovalainen. On several occasions he capitalised on the misfortune of the “column A” teams to put himself in Q2 and on one occasion even achieved it on merit.

    Jarno Trulli is no slouch, particularly in qualifying where he made his name early in his career. For Heikki to have such a good record against him in qualifying speaks for itself – and while Jarno Trulli may mention the steering wheel, it should be pointed out that they both had the same equipment. Heikki finished an average more than one place higher than Trulli did. Given that they did not have the pace to challenge the teams in front, that is the maximum he could be expected to achieve.

    4. Jensen Button
    When I started to reflect on 2011, my initial reaction was to put Button 2nd, as I alluded to earlier.

    Let me get it off the bat straight away that I think Button had an excellent season, I would even say his best season in Formula 1, because he kept the momentum up throughout the season, unlike his championship year where he faded once the Brawn lost his advantage against the rest of the field.

    However, it should be pointed out despite his team mate having a bad season (by Hamilton’s standards it was his worst performace over a season in the sport) he didn’t actually obliterate him. I was shocked to find out that Button and Hamilton were the closest drivers when it was averaged “number of places team mate finished ahead” – when both drivers finsihed, Button was on average half a place ahead of Hamilton (both mean and median) only two driver pairings had a closer mean (Algersuari/Buemi and Barrichello/Maldonado), but no driver pairing had a closer median.

    The reason for this is that Button had some races where he was off of the pace. He also put in some terrible qualifying performances, which usually accounted for the races where Hamilton finished significantly ahead. While Button’s highs were as good as any of the driver’s I have listed above him, they were not as consistent, and for that reason I have listed him fourth.

    5. …..

    At this point it becomes a little difficult. The four drivers stand head and shoulders above the rest of the field in terms of their performances this year.

    None of the team mates of any of the drivers above can qualify as they did a significantly worse job with the same equipment.

    Of the rest of the field, Alguersuari and Buemi were fairly evenly matched, both had up and down seasons and neither really stood out.

    Kobayashi out performed Perez over the course of the season with one of the higher places-ahead-of-teammate, however Perez was in his rookie season and his Monaco accident impacted on his race fitness.

    Rosberg also had a big margin in this regard over Schumacher, being on average 1.23 places ahead when both cars finished, however Schumacher finished, on average, half a place higher and did finish ahead of Rosberg roughly the same number of times he finished behind.

    Heidfeld failed to perform enough against Petrov, who in turn was slower than Senna whose excellent qualifying performances were let down by rusty race craft.

    Barrichello did not demonstrate the same performance against Maldonado that he had done against Hulkenberg, and Maldonado’s performance was inconsistent as well as demonstrating road rage on more than one occasion.

    I was going to go with Sutil for this position, as he had an excellent end to the season and was the only driver outside of those in the top 5 teams to have an average finishing position in the points, however the problem I have is that his performance only picked up when he realised his seat was on the line and needed to prove himself to his employer and/or potential other employers. I am not sure I feel it is right to award the 5th best driver of the year to someone who was coasting when he thought he race seat was safe.

    So for 5th place, I find myself making an unexpected conclusion:

    5. Daniel Ricciardo
    Initially, I was not too impressed with his performance, as he was beaten by Narain Karthikeyan at the Indian Grand Prix, however I later found out this was due to a pit stop that put him over 40 seconds behind Karthikeyan which he managed to close to 1 second before making his second stop. Taking this into consideration I would say that Ricciardo put in the best performance of any of the rookies.

    I know that many people will go for Di Resta, however Di Resta was firmly beaten by Sutil over the season, and while Di Resta was solid and consistent, he was not spectacular. He was also often outpaced by Hulkenberg in practice sessions.

    Perez’s season was blighted by his accident as it’s possible without it he would have been closer to Kobayashi, however Kobayashi had a fairly poor season compared to what he achieved last year.

    Ricciardo beat Liuzzi in the same car, and what is more impressive is that he stepped into it mid season. Liuzzi had more experience both of F1 and car specific knowledge of the Hispania. So for Ricciardo to take the fight to him and achieve better results (he beat him 4-1 when both finished, and finished ahead of one of the faster Virgins on two occasions) That is very impressive, and is a performance that will have been missed by most because of the fact it was in a Hispania.

    In summary:

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Kovalainen
    4. Button
    5. Ricciardo

    [Reply]


  237.   237. Posted By: Deane
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:28 pm 

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Button
    Kovalainen
    Sutil

    [Reply]


  238.   238. Posted By: LA Hill
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:30 pm 

    1. Vettel – The best in this season
    2. Button – Surprisingly good
    3. Kovalainen – Trashed his teammate, attitude that deserves faster car next year
    4. Alonso – Better than his teammate
    5. Schumacher – Surprised me with his improvement comparing to last year. Seemed faster than Nico in many races.

    [Reply]


  239.   239. Posted By: Skanda
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:31 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  240.   240. Posted By: Marcus
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:34 pm 

    1. Vettel – trounced a team-mate who was not racing badly
    2. Button – two years after everyone said he’d be destroyed at Mclaren, beat HAM by over 40 points!
    3. Alonso – if not for his cars fatal weakness on Medium/Hard tyres, could have managed second.
    4. Sutil – first few races were ragged but he rose to the challenge of his rookie team-mate to make him look very average by the end.
    5. Kovalainen – the only one of the ‘newer’ teams to pop up amongst the mid field consistantly. Caterham should be scoring points next year.

    [Reply]


  241.   241. Posted By: ChrisJones
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:35 pm 

    1 – Vettel: He may have had the best car, but his consistency and focus was second to none. Deserved the championship in 2010, and certainly in 2011.

    2- Alonso: Drove the wheels off of a poorly designed car. He is in my opinion the best driver on the grid, the whole package. His results this year relative to his teammate (who outperformed Raikkonen and Schumacher on occasion as teammates) given his car performance speak for themselves.

    3 – Button: He has always struggled with a bit of a slower reputation, but Button’s flashes of brilliance this year show he has always been a world champion, just didtnt get the car he needed until 2009. Beating Hamilton is no small feat, especially in numerous cases this year where Button beat Hamilton strictly on pace.

    The last two were the most difficult. I think most people have vettel, Alonso and button in their top three, but the other two is I think where most peoples opinions vary.

    4 – Kovaleinen: Heikki showed this year that he deserves to be in a better car than any of the new teams can offer. While Trulli has made a joke of this year, Heikki has taken the fight to the mid-fielders on numerous occasions, the only driver with the new teams to really do so this year. I can see why Fernandez wants to keep him.

    5 – Webber: Although Webber didn’t accomplish nearly as much as he should have this year, he was always one of the most exciting people to watch on track, often putting in some great drives due to poor starts or quali performances. The RB7 is not designed to race in a pack, it is essentially designed for qualifying laps. Webbers difficulties with the Pirellis (and his KERS) often caused him to be fighting in the pack, in a car not optimized to do so. I think Webber deserves a mention in the top 5 if for no other reason than his pass on Alonso at Eau Rouge. I have a picture of that pass in my cubicle at work. To me that is one of the greatest, ballsiest passes I have ever seen. The fact that he pulled it on Alonso makes it even more impressive. That kind of respect between drivers is something special.

    Thanks James for all this years news, it has been great.

    [Reply]


  242.   242. Posted By: JP
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:37 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  243.   243. Posted By: Spinodontosaurus
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:47 pm 

    1. Alonso
    2. Kovalainen
    3. Sutil
    4. Button
    5. Vettel

    [Reply]


  244.   244. Posted By: Harry Gilbert
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:49 pm 

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

    Rosberg is a very close sixth, but I don’t think he proved himself significantly better than Schumacher this year.

    [Reply]


  245.   245. Posted By: saleh alfakieh
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:50 pm 

    1-Jenson Button
    2-Lewis Hamilton
    3-Paul Di Resta
    4-Mark Webber
    5-Heikki Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  246.   246. Posted By: Ewan Marshall
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:51 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Sutil

    [Reply]


  247.   247. Posted By: Patrick Byrne
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:52 pm 

    Alonso – Has left the occasional histrionics behind and matured into a stunningly capable F1 driver. The best strenghts of Button and Alonso in one package – intellegence, pace, adaptability, race-craft.
    The best?

    Vettel – He’s gotta be up there hasn’t he? He’s improving all the time and learning from mistakes. When he crashed out in the penultimate race he went straight to the data logs to try figure out what went wrong then went to the prat-perch to soak up any other useful info. When Ham crashed out in Canada he went to hang with celebrity hip-hop buddies. Says it all…

    Button – Perhaps the new tyres/rear-end stability play to his strenghts? Probably least mistake-prone driver in the sport, very clever and happy in his own skin.
    That inner confidce has raised his game.

    Di Resta – Was up to speed straight away – always a good sign. Sutil had to raise his game to match and beat him towards season-end. Would have rated him higher if he kept on top of AS. Seems technically knowledgeable.
    Needs to lighten up though…very serious, dour persona won’t help his career in the modern age. A bit ttom much media-traing and too much time listening to JYS’s old waffle!

    Senna – OK…I like the guy for a number of reasons. But was quick straight away and did enough to prove many doubters wrong. I also think Petrov is an under-rated benchmark…

    [Reply]


  248.   248. Posted By: Janis1207
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:53 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Sutil

    [Reply]


  249.   249. Posted By: Patrick Byrne
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:53 pm 

    ^^^^^
    Meant to say ‘best strenghts of Button and Hamilton’ above

    [Reply]


  250.   250. Posted By: Jacques Martaine
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:56 pm 

    my top 5 would be…

    1. Alonso / given that Ferrari pretty much wrote off the second half of the season, he still managed some brilliant podiums and showed real fighting spirit. I rate him as the best driver in formula one overall, although not necessarily the out and out quickest…

    2. Button / a superb year with some excellent wins and a convincing lead over Hamilton in the points. He uses his brain during a grand prix and isn’t afraid to take a risk. Only area to improve is qualifying…

    3. Vettel / outstanding and much more consistent than 2010. In no way do I denigrate his skills by placing him at 3 on my list, but the two ahead had inferior machinery and had to work far harder for their results. Vettel made few mistakes and destroyed Webber. He could be very difficult to beat next yr…

    4. Hamilton / too many tangles with others (esp. Massa!) and a tendency to let the red mist overwhelm him. But, when he kept his cool, he delivered some titanic drives. I still think he is the fastest driver in F1, but that is not enough to assure him of the ‘best driver’ tag. He makes my top 5 because his highs were so impressive, esp. China. If only McLaren could build him a car that matches Red Bull, if only he could sort out his private life, if only he took on-board some mind management lessons from Jenson…too many ifs in other words!

    5. Rosberg / another season in which he annihilated Schumacher in qualifying. It was much closer in the races, but he beat Schumi in the standings and managed to avoid slagging off the team in public for a shocker of a car. Still so difficult to judge how good he is…will Schumacher ever be able to recapture the old form on a regular basis? Either way, Rosberg is team leader, on pace if not PR, at Merc…

    [Reply]


  251.   251. Posted By: BurgerF1
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:56 pm 

    1. Vettel (or Ve-TEL as they say in Scotland)
    Made great use of a dominant car, and comprehensively outperformed a very good team-mate in Webber. If he does the same in a less dominant car, then he’ll be one of the true greats in the sport.

    2. Alonso
    Out-drove the car the majority of the season. Highly aggressive and successful starts and consistent races elevated him above at least one McLaren and one Red Bull quite often. Outperformed Massa, but I don’t think that’s saying much. Has cemented his #1 position at Ferrari which will bode well for him in the seasons to come.

    3. Button
    Got his “Happy Place” set-up early in the McLaren camp and beat his WDC winning team-mate at the final tally. His drives were at times spectacular (Canada) to mature and strategic. He’s showing a depth of race craft I really didn’t think he had. It will be very interesting to see how Hamilton and Button manage the situation next season.

    4. Perez
    A great rookie season against a more experienced and also highly regarded team-mate. End of the season performance dropped off a bit, but I put this down to the car more than the driver. Recovery from Monaco accident was impressive and mature. Needs to take another step forward next year to gain that coveted top team drive. Would be helpful if the Sauber team could make a real step forward and have the funding to develop the car throughout the season; they always seem to drop off that little bit in the second half.

    5. Kovalainen
    The best of the rest by far took Catherham very close to the midfield on occasion. Out qualified Trulli often enough to make me wonder why Trulli is considered a qualifying specialist. It didn’t really change much when Trulli got his new steering system.

    On a general note, it’s my understanding that the weight-split regulation for the cars will be lifted next season. I think this will have a profound effect on how drivers are able to individualize the set-up of their cars. Any thoughts?

    [Reply]


  252.   252. Posted By: Chris
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 8:57 pm 

    1. Vettel, results speak for themselves could not do much better than he did.
    2. Alonso, some smooth aggressive moves, many points more than the car deserved
    3. Button, a year where for I lost all the negative prejudice I had about his past in Williams & BAR/Honda. Was a bit lucky to have Hamilton on his worst year though to shine the way he did
    4. Alguersuari, have you noticed how many great starts he has done? His point collection was also excellent almost double the ones of Buemi. Could be an interesting choice for replacing Webber in 2013 or a chance in an upper midfield team
    5. Sutil, although he is not often mentioned or noticed he delivers solid results quite consistently during the years and 2011 was not different. Much better in effectiveness than his new team member who is clearly talented

    [Reply]


  253.   253. Posted By: tim
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 9:00 pm 

    1) Button
    2) Vettel
    3) Alonso
    4) Kovalainen
    4) di Resta

    [Reply]


  254.   254. Posted By: Emanuel
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 9:07 pm 

    1. Vetel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Schumacher

    [Reply]


  255.   255. Posted By: Torn
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 9:16 pm 

    1. Vettel – self-explanatory, superiority in Q and some very strong race performances.
    2. Button – became McLaren’s number one by his own right and managed to defeat the Seb couple of times.
    3. Alonso – Brought some podiums with a car that most of the time was not capable of delivering such results.
    4. Kovalainen – a midfield driver with certainly not midfield car. Splendid job.
    5. di Resta – in my opinion the best rookie of 2011.

    [Reply]


  256.   256. Posted By: S-D
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 9:22 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso (close call with Button, but Alonso was just so consistent in qualifying as well as during races)
    3. Button
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Di Resta

    [Reply]


  257.   257. Posted By: CartRider
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 9:24 pm 

    My top five is:

    1. Vettel – it does him justice. Even though we know that his car was superior to the competition and that he had the status of #1 driver, his achievements this season speak for themselves in comparison to Webber, and Webber is the baseline for Vettel since he had the same car. Also, I remember Webber had the fame of one of the fastest qualifiers when he did wonders with Jaguar, but Webber is bleak in this component against Vettel;

    2. Alonso – was the best performer squeezing everything from his Ferrari. And he made Felipe look uncompetitive;

    3. Button – he beat Hamilton, which I did not expect him to be able to do. That says it all;

    4. Schumacher – just looking back at the season I do not remember Rosberg shine (except in Belgium), while Michael had several strong showings;

    5. Hamilton – still was a formidable competitor despite some decline. I am sure the experience of this season will make him stronger. Fortunately for Hamilton, he was taught some modesty this season.

    Kudos also go to Sutil.

    I do not understand people who say that Senna showed himself a fast driver. He was generally slower than Petrov in races, sometimes struggling to overtake even Lotuses. Of course, he joined the team in the middle of the season, but he is not a novice – he had almost one year of experience with HRT last year. In short, Senna is one of those very few drivers who do not deserve a seat next year, IMO

    [Reply]


  258.   258. Posted By: tyresmoke
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 9:29 pm 

    My list

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Alguersuari

    [Reply]

    tyresmoke Reply:

    must add that #5 was the hardest position. Alguersuari wins out over Sustil and Rosberg, who I both think could have extracted more out of their packages, especially Sutil. Jaime’s ability with the 8th best car on the grid shows some true potential for another Spanish race winner in F1.

    [Reply]


  259.   259. Posted By: Andrew Carter
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 9:29 pm 

    1.Vettel. Amazing in qualifying, blisteringly fast at the start of races to break any one elses challenge. Did the business.

    2. Button. A little shacky in qualy at the start of the year but proved his very fast and very intelligent. Consistently the only guy that could take the fight to Vettel over the second half of the season, and probably lost a couple of wins to McLaren mistakes.

    3. Alonso. Dragged that Ferrari into fights with McLaren and Webber when it probably didnt deserve to. Made a few mistakes though.

    4. Kovalainen. Consistently tried to take the fight to the modfield with the Lotus, and in the last few races looked like he was getting there. Annihalated Trulli with or without the uprated power steering.

    5.Rosberg. Difficult choice this as everyone else had a very up and down year or was just plain bad, but Nico was had more ups than downs and his lows werent that low.

    [Reply]


  260.   260. Posted By: Grigory Arauz
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 9:33 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    DiResta
    kovvi

    [Reply]


  261.   261. Posted By: markdartj
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 9:39 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  262.   262. Posted By: PaulL
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 9:42 pm 

    1. Vettel
    Showed blinding speed and far fewer mistakes of his own this year.
    2. Button
    Put a marker down within his own team.
    3. Alonso
    Ten podiums and a win in only the third fastest car.
    4. Kovalainen
    Hard to measure, but very consistent and motivated.
    5. Di Resta
    Stood out a few times in his rookie season.

    [Reply]


  263.   263. Posted By: Martin Harris
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 9:44 pm 

    1. Vettel – peerless
    2. Button – at the top of his game
    3. Alonso – extraordinary drives in lacklustre car
    4. Hamilton – poor season? still managed three wins!
    5. Kovalainen – probably got as much out of car as Alonso

    [Reply]


  264.   264. Posted By: William Wallace
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 9:45 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  265.   265. Posted By: DB
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 9:46 pm 

    I believe in the system:
    01 Sebastian Vettel
    02 Jenson Button
    03 Mark Webber
    04 Fernando Alonso
    05 Lewis Hamilton

    [Reply]

    james Reply:

    Well said. Totally agree.

    [Reply]

    Aussie Rod Reply:

    So by that rationale Massa was 6th best driver on the grid of 24?

    The system doesn’t tell all.

    [Reply]

    Stuart Harrison Reply:

    Unfortunately ‘the system’ isn’t adjusted for car performance! Check out how many people are voting for Alguersuari or Kovalainen. And Massa is the 6th best driver in the field? Ha! And to think he had the cheek to suggest it was time for Barrichello to retire.. I wouldn’t be surprised if Massa doesn’t get the boot halfway through 2012.

    [Reply]


  266.   266. Posted By: Niall
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 9:46 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Webber
    5. Di Resta

    [Reply]


  267.   267. Posted By: tomtyl
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 9:52 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  268.   268. Posted By: Richard D
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 9:52 pm 

    1. Vettel – Reminiscent of the halcyon days of Schumacher at Ferrari. An exceptional performance (that for the good of F1 he hopefully won’t repeat next year!)

    2. Button – Became a real class act as the season wore on, growing into the de facto Mclaren number 1. Gave us a race to remember in Canada.

    3. Alonso – Very close to Button in wringing the car for all of it was worth, destroying Massa every time. The one race he had the chance to win – due to the diffuser debacle – he did.

    4. Kovalainen – Really needs Caterham to reward him next year with a decent car. Often had a great start and mixed it with the midfield in the early laps before the inevitable fall back.

    5. Schumacher – Flashes of the old maestro were back, although his poor qualifying tended to flatter his later races up the pack.

    27. Webber – Great bloke but so many other drivers could have brought a bigger fight to Vettel, and given us a semblance of a championship.

    28. Massa – Again, a nice guy (finishing last) but just not worthy of a race seat at Ferrari. That these two are still in these seats next year is an absolute disaster.

    [Reply]


  269.   269. Posted By: John S
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 9:54 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Di Resta
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Alonso

    [Reply]


  270.   270. Posted By: Victor Leung
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 9:57 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  271.   271. Posted By: Ross
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:02 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Sutil

    [Reply]


  272.   272. Posted By: Mad Marz
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:02 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Perez

    [Reply]


  273.   273. Posted By: Ross
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:02 pm 

    James when are you appearing on Talksport to plug the book?

    [Reply]

    James Allen Reply:

    Friday 9th December at 1-30pm to review the 2011 F1 season.. I may mention the book!

    [Reply]

    The Gunner Reply:

    I’ll listen if only to hear Hawksbee and Jacobs feign a modicum of interest in a sport that isn’t football.

    [Reply]

    James Allen Reply:

    Sure they will. They love a bit of F1 every now and then!

    Ross Reply:

    I only listen to those two on TS but enjoy your section when you are on with them.

    Jacobs is not an F1 fan but he does have impressive knowledge of US sports so its unfair to say they only like football. Paul Hawksbee is an excellent presenter with a wealth of knowledge on most things.

    Given F1 popularity in the UK I am surprised TS do not have a regular weekly F1 show. Would certainly make a lot of season during the summer when they are reduced to talking about pre season football. I enjoyed the one off show you did with Eddie Irvine.

    James Allen Reply:

    They did have one last season, sponsored by LG UK, post race Sunday nights with Eddie Irvine

    Ross Reply:

    sense not season! When do we get an edit button!


  274.   274. Posted By: Laura
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:03 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Button
    4. Di Resta
    5. Kovalinen

    [Reply]


  275.   275. Posted By: Anderson Nascimento
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:05 pm 

    Sebastian Vettel
    Jenson Button
    Fernando Alonso
    Nico Rosberg
    Adrian Sutil

    [Reply]


  276.   276. Posted By: Chris Woodward
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:08 pm 

    1. Vettel
    Destructive, dominant, untouchable. A bona-fide record breaker and mega-star, he won’t fade for a long time to come.

    2. Button
    Consistent and showing himself to be one of, if not the most intelligent racer in the field, and with a superb win in Canada that was easily the best of his career, Button had an excellent season and often looked like the only man capable of being on the same continent as Vettel.

    3. Alonso
    In a car that never looked like scoring well, he took it by the scruff of the neck and hauled it up the field. In lesser hands the Ferrari would have looked what it was – ordinary.

    4. Alguesuari
    After a sluggish and, in all honesty, rubbish start to the season, from Canada onwards he always looked like scoring points in an average car. Poor qualyfing became irrelevant as he consistently made progress in races, finishing decisively ahead of his teammate.

    5. Di Resta
    Has (unconfirmed!) kicked his teammate out of Force India with a superb rookie season in F1. Scored in his first two races before a lean spell until Singapore, his decent qualifying pace and excellent points tally for the second half defies his inexperience and makes him a star for the future.

    [Reply]


  277.   277. Posted By: Joe S
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:09 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  278.   278. Posted By: Paul Bates
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:14 pm 

    1 Vettle = Outraced team mate & broke records(even on Top Gear)
    2 Button – silenced critics, kept cool to take 2nd place and beat F1′s best driver (Hamilton).
    3 Alonso – started to respect him more & on podium with an inferior car
    4 Rosberg – constantly showing that he is potentially a WDC & our racing Shumi
    5 Hamilton -won 3 races and despite the ups & downs still showed a masterclass of driving.

    [Reply]


  279.   279. Posted By: Dave Cooper
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:20 pm 

    1. Vettel. Has to be number one.
    2. Button. Very strong all-round performer.
    3. Alonso. A real fighter. Never gives up
    4. Kovalainen. Out-performed the car.
    5. Hamilton. When focussed, almost unbeatable.

    [Reply]


  280.   280. Posted By: Nick
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:20 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Di Resta
    5. Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  281.   281. Posted By: The Dark Side
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:24 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Hamilton
    5. Di Resta

    [Reply]


  282.   282. Posted By: DK
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:25 pm 

    1.Vettel – destroyed his team mate in all races, outstanding qualifying performances, faultless driving
    2.Alonso – always squeezed maximum out of his Ferrari
    3.Button – very confident in his driving, on par with Vettel in the second half of the season
    4.Kovalainen – pushed the lotus to it’s limits
    5.Rosberg – usually finished qualifying and race in best possible position

    [Reply]


  283.   283. Posted By: Richard Craig
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:27 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    Utterly dominant and the youngest double
    World Champion. Nuff said.

    2. Jenson Button
    Probably had his best ever season (yes, better
    than his WDC winning year) and has, I
    believe, claimed No. 1 status at McLaren.
    Put it this way, I don’t expect Hamilton to be
    at McLaren in 2013, whilst Jenson will be.
    Button for WDC in 2012? Yes please!

    3. Fernando Alonso
    His talent transcended the deficit between Ferrari and Red Bull. To finish ahead of Webber and Hamilton (who had the respective best two cars on the grid) is all down to his talent. 2012 is a make or break season for him. After the upheaval of 2007 and the written off years of 2008 and 2009, Fernando didn’t sign up to Ferrari to have three seasons without a title 2010, 2011 and – potentially – 2012

    4. Nico Rosberg
    Outscored Michael Schumacher again and extracted the maximum – more or less – from the fourth best car on the grid. Will be disappointed he couldn’t beat Massa in the standings, which would’ve been possible if he’d had better luck.

    5. Paul Di Resta
    Although he didn’t beat his teammate, he was strong in the first half of the season, needs a bit more racecraft. If he is retained by Force India alongside Hulkenburg – who is highly rated based on his junior formulae career – he will need to do better, well he will need to beat him if he is to get a Mercedes seat in 2013.

    [Reply]


  284.   284. Posted By: mallikarjuna
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:27 pm 

    1.vettel
    2.button
    3.alonso
    4.di resta
    5.kovalinen

    [Reply]


  285.   285. Posted By: Trent
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:27 pm 

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

    I suspect this has already been picked 10 times, but I didn’t have the patience to scroll through all the posts

    [Reply]


  286.   286. Posted By: James Nicholson
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:28 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Di Resta

    [Reply]


  287.   287. Posted By: Liam smart
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:31 pm 

    Button
    Vettel
    Algersuari
    Alonso
    Kovalainen

    [Reply]

    Liam smart Reply:

    Sorry, my spelling is atrocious – alguersuari and kovalainen! Not my awful spelling of them

    And button for outperforming Hamilton, Vettel for smashing it this season, alguersuari for really stepping up and outperforming his toro rosso, alonso for smashing his massa and he is just supreme in all aspects, and kovalainen for doing such a good job for lotus and for performing significantly better than trulli almost consistently and taking the team to 10th (plus his attitude is respectable)

    [Reply]


  288.   288. Posted By: miniac
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:36 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Di Resta
    5. Alguersuari

    [Reply]


  289.   289. Posted By: Charan
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:38 pm 

    1. Vettel – lets see how good he is without the blown diffuser
    2. Button – Matured over the years into a consumate
    professional but lacks in outright pace
    3. Alonso – relentless monster – what else can anyone say
    4. Lewis Hamilton – Button hangs out and trains with Lance
    Armstrong, Lewis spends time with
    rappers – need I say more – hopefully
    this year was a wake up year
    5. Adrian Sutil – I think di Resta was better but Sutil has
    more points and I need to win the book
    :)

    [Reply]


  290.   290. Posted By: navaro72
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:38 pm 

    1 Alonso
    2 Button
    3 Vettel
    4 Sutil
    5 Di Resta

    [Reply]


  291.   291. Posted By: Cain
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:40 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Alguersuari

    [Reply]


  292.   292. Posted By: Ron Grable
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:44 pm 

    Button
    Alonso
    Vettel
    Rosberg
    Hamilton

    [Reply]


  293.   293. Posted By: Khan
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:53 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Alguersuari
    Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  294.   294. Posted By: Andrew Tierney
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:56 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Schumacher
    Di Resta

    [Reply]


  295.   295. Posted By: Pau
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:58 pm 

    I guess it is

    1.- Vettel
    2.- Alonso
    3.- Button
    4.- Schumacher
    5.- DiResta

    [Reply]


  296.   296. Posted By: kers
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 10:59 pm 

    1. Alonso
    2. Button
    3. Vettel
    4. Schumacher
    5. Alguersari

    [Reply]


  297.   297. Posted By: mattw
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 11:02 pm 

    1) Vettel (Well, it has to be doesn’t it?)

    2) Button (Only guy to consistantly take the fight to Vettel. I’ld give Button the nod over Alonso because Button beat Lewis in equal cars)

    3) Alonso (Could almost be equal second, great attacking season in a car not quite as fast as the ones he was racing)

    4) Lewis (His drives in China and Germany stand as some of the season’s finest, plus the only non Red Bull pole of the year – but sometimes he just wasn’t at the races)

    5) Rosberg (Dominated Schumacher for a second year running)

    [Reply]


  298.   298. Posted By: Iain
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 11:02 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Perez
    5. di Resta

    [Reply]


  299.   299. Posted By: Dave B
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 11:02 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Rosberg
    4. di Resta
    5. Webber

    [Reply]


  300.   300. Posted By: gremlin
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 11:08 pm 

    1 Button , relatively to his team mate
    2 Alonso , relatively to his car
    3 Vettel , can not be out of this podium
    4 Perez , for his performance as a rookie, outshining Kobayashi on many occasions
    5 Sutil

    [Reply]


  301.   301. Posted By: Yos
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 11:14 pm 

    vettel
    button
    alonso
    hamilton
    kovalinon

    [Reply]


  302.   302. Posted By: Philippe Zacca
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 11:15 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Alguersuari
    5. Sutil

    [Reply]


  303.   303. Posted By: Craig D
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 11:16 pm 

    Even if correct, I expect this combination to have occurred 10 times already!

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Kovalainen
    Di Resta

    Reasons covered perfectly well by others!

    [Reply]


  304.   304. Posted By: OukilF1
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 11:16 pm 

    1.Vettel
    2.Button
    3.Alonso
    4.Di Resta
    5.Alguersuari

    [Reply]


  305.   305. Posted By: Laurence H
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 11:16 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Alguersuari

    I think the first three pick themselves, the rest of the pack is much harder to judge. KOV was consistently the best of the bottom teams and was the only driver to approach the midfield. ALG had some great qualifying and race drives into the points which just edges him, in my opinion, ahead of Perez, who I was also considering for 5th spot.

    [Reply]


  306.   306. Posted By: Grabyrdy
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 11:17 pm 

    1 Vettel
    2 Button
    3 Alonso
    (that’s the easy bit, looks again at photo – it must be between Perez, Di Resta and Kova, why not Webbo, he didn’t do that badly, neither did Nico … oh all right …)
    4 Perez
    5 Di Resta

    [Reply]


  307.   307. Posted By: Aussie Rod
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 11:21 pm 

    Vettel – Easy no 1
    Alonso – Extracted everything form the Ferrari, dominated his teamate
    Button – Great 2nd place in the championship, but was out-qualified too often to be top 2
    Kovalainen – Outstanding in the Lotus
    Sutil – Best of the ‘rest’ outside the big top 4 teams. A very good year.

    Thanks for the great coverage this year James, very enjoyable reading your website every morning!

    [Reply]


  308.   308. Posted By: Rhys
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 11:28 pm 

    1. Vettel – Its one thing having a fast car, its other being able to dominant in the fashion that he did, especially in qualy and over Webber.

    2. Button – 3 fantastic victories, including that win in Canada, along with his form in the second half of the season and against Hamilton, proved that his 2009 World Championship was no flash in the pan

    3. Alonso – Always a danger to the Red Bulls and McLarens even though his car shoudlnt have allowed it to happen.

    4. Kovalainen – Put in some great displays in a car that is still behind the midfield and showed his passion and enthusiam regardless of being at the back of the pack, with no chance of points.

    5. Sutil – Just shades it over Di Resta due to his all round stronger performances, especially for a guy who may not even have a seat for 2012.

    [Reply]


  309.   309. Posted By: mo kahn
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 11:34 pm 

    2011

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

    2012

    1. Kimi
    2. Kimi
    3. Kimi
    4. Kimi
    5. Kimi

    Bring on 2012 :)

    [Reply]

    christos pallis Reply:

    Kimi Kimi Kimi… Are Renault or Lotus or Renault Lotus GP getting their magic dampers back next season! They will not make a car capable of his talent. I’m shocked Kimi bothered to come back with any team outside the top 4 because there is a bit gap to the rest and i fear it will get even bigger with Fota collapsing!

    [Reply]

    mo kahn Reply:

    Kimi coming back counts, somewhere he won’t be wrung and drained out by team politics. Mclaren is Lewis and now Button obsessed, Ferrari is Satander in disguise and Alonso influenced, Redbull is Vettel driven.

    I think they ought bring back Flavio and poach back Symonds. I think what these two would bring is the Balls factor to the team, which is needed by every team… Look at Ferrari, they lost out the Balls factor when they lost Jean Todt and Ross Brawn.

    Kimi’s natural talent is second to none, he would’ve been a 2008 champion if Ferrari didn’t strategically throw their weight behind Massa, the same way Ron Dennis strategically threw his weight behind Hamilton in 2007. I think Kimi loss of pace was mainly due to what was happening outside the car then on the inside.

    He is a care-a-hang, not-much-of-a-talker kinda’ guy and his natural talent in terms of speed is phenomenal, what he needs is a politics free environment, he doesn’t ask much from his team, unlike others, the least that he deservedly seeks is an environment free from politics and these strategic games which are played unjustly by these big three teams.

    I don’t expect him to win the world championship next year, all F1 needs is a driver named Kimi to set the F1 world alight through his sheer speed factor.

    He is politically incorrect, doesn’t suck up to media, he just drives the wheels out of the car and returns to his ice creams and vodkas… By far the most genuine characters in Formula one… Thrilled to have back a man who doesn’t have to try hard :)

    [Reply]


  310.   310. Posted By: Mariusz Luczak
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 11:36 pm 

    1. Button
    2. Vettel
    3. Alonso
    4. Rosberg
    5. Di Resta

    [Reply]


  311.   311. Posted By: Ben
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 11:37 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    The most dominant season we’ve seen since Schumacher’s romps in the early 2000′s. Never put a foot wrong and always delivered when it counted.

    2. Fernando Alonso
    The Ferrari was made to look competitive by Alonso where in reality, it was probably closer to Mercedes than McLaren.

    3. Jenson Button
    Superb season by Button. His victories were all stunning drives and he comfortably beat Hamilton, something that looked impossible just 3 years ago.

    4. Adrian Sutil
    Sutil really had it taken up to him by a rookie at the start of the season, but by season’s end he’d stood up and comfortably beaten Di Resta. He deserves a shot in a good car.

    5. Mark Webber
    Many thought Mark was the best driver in 2010, yet most have said he’s under achieved in 2011. Where as in actual fact he’s scored more points in 2011 than what he did in 2010. In fact his points tally 2011 would have won him the title in 2010.

    [Reply]


  312.   312. Posted By: Anil
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 11:43 pm 

    1. Vettel – Can’t really argue with this one, he destroyed his team mate and never really made any mistakes.

    2. Alonso – A load of podiums and a win in a car that was clearly the 3rd best in qualifying and never the strongest in the race. His best season alongside 05/06.

    3. Button – Never the fastest over a lap but his tire management and racecraft was superb. Whilst Lewis got involved in loads of incidents he kept his head down and just raced. His best season.

    4. Sutil – The guy came 9th in the driver’s championship. This is an incredible achievement considering he was driving the 6th best car. Massively deserves a shot in a better car.

    5. Kovalainen – In race conditions he was often staring at the back of much faster cars, which is amazing given how much performance they were missing through an underdeveloped EBD. Deserves to be the driver to score their first points.

    Great season for Schumacher as well. Despite 5 retirements he was absolutely on it on the fast tracks and showed superior race pace to Rosberg numerous times. If he can sort out his qualifying he’ll be just fine.

    [Reply]


  313.   313. Posted By: Richard Trange
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 11:55 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  314.   314. Posted By: Morton
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 11:56 pm 

    1. Button
    2. Hamilton
    3. Di Resta
    4. Webber
    5. Schumacher

    [Reply]


  315.   315. Posted By: The Gunner
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 11:57 pm 

    Maldonado
    Massa
    Trulli
    Liuzzi
    Webber

    [Reply]


  316.   316. Posted By: The Gunner
        Date: December 1st, 2011 @ 11:59 pm 

    No, seriously

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Di Resta
    Alguersuari

    [Reply]


  317.   317. Posted By: Cliff
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:00 am 

    Vettell – Given the best allround car, but he still had to deliver results. Some say that he won the WDC because he was in the best car, but the level of consistency shown during qualifying a on Sundays confirms that the boy’s ‘Special’

    Button – Didn’t get embroiled in all the noise around Lewis Hamilton and like Vettell Button was delivered regular points.

    Alonso – Top quality drives in a car that was clearly not on the pace of the Red Bull or the McLaren.

    Sutil – Whilst everyone was talking about his rookie team mate he kept his head down and delivered the points

    Alguersuari – Kept his head down whilst rumours were circulating about his future culminating in a strong second half of the season.

    [Reply]


  318.   318. Posted By: The Gunner
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:00 am 

    Would kinda like to see a ‘worst 5′ too, though :)

    [Reply]

    James Allen Reply:

    Tell us yours…

    [Reply]

    Iain Reply:

    1. Maldonado

    By a long way.

    2. Trulli
    3. Rubens
    4. Massa
    5. Webber

    [Reply]

    Ross Reply:

    Ahhhh this is much more fun.

    1) Trulli
    2) Massa
    3) Maldonado
    4) Glock
    5) Hamilton

    69bhp Reply:

    Massa
    Petrov
    Maldonado
    Trulli
    Webber

    Aussie Rod Reply:

    This sounds like fun… here’s mine.

    1st – Massa
    2nd – Daylight
    3rd – Barrichello (only 4pts all year!)
    4th – Trulli (demolished by Heikki)
    5th – A tough one… but I would say Kobayashi for not building on his great 2010 and generally being shown up by Perez

    [Reply]

    Dave Aston Reply:

    Didn’t Kobayashi score twice as many points as Perez?

    Syn Reply:

    Worst: Massa
    then…
    Trulli
    Maldonado
    Webber
    Schmacher

    [Reply]

    Torn Reply:

    1.Williams team.
    2.Hamilton. Yes, the almighty Lewis. The number of really stupid unforced mistakes this year was remarkable and as I’m completely neutral about him I’cant simply forget about it.
    3. Massa. From bad to worse with a touch of frustration.
    4. Trulli. Hopeless, but expected.
    5. Webber although I still don’t believe his team didn’t “help” him with those poor starts. And those magically improved when Vettel had the title in the bag.

    quest Reply:

    Worst:

    Senna
    Trulli
    Massa
    Webber
    Maldonaldo

    [Reply]


  319.   319. Posted By: ferggsa
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:04 am 

    1. Vettel. Outstanding qualis (even when not expected) plus good starts allowed him to sail away in clear air and avoid fights, keeps #1
    2. Button. Precise and focused, goes from #4 to #2 (assuming 2nd driver in 2nd fastest car)
    3. Alonso. True fighter in spite of equipment disadvantage, goes from #5 to #4
    4. Alguersuari. Kept his cool and drove fast when needed, helped by strategies, goes from #16 to #14
    5. Rosberg. Just because he is able to beat the best ever driver (MS) consistently, goes from #8 to #7

    Special mention to Sutil(gained 2), Kobayashi (gained 1) and Heidfeld, who almost beat his teammate with only half the season
    I think DiResta (lost 2)and Perez (lost 2)did very well considering they are rookies
    It is difficult to evaluate Kovalainen or Glock, because they are not shown on TV and there are few comments afterwards

    One question for you James, regarding clear air
    Is it possible that running in dirty air affects RedBulls more than other cars?
    My impression is that when Webber lost places in the starts and ran with the pack he had a hard time coping, once positions and gaps were settled he could again go for fastest laps, (which he won this year)

    Great work as usual, keep the news coming through the winter

    [Reply]


  320.   320. Posted By: Alex W
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:05 am 

    Webber*
    Vettel
    Alonso
    Button
    Rosberg

    *Webber only makes the list this year because of his singular stand on the Bahrain GP, not a driving skill but still made him the top driver for me. He may just have saved F1′s international reputation, but we will never really know!

    [Reply]


  321.   321. Posted By: Milton
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:05 am 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Sutil
    4. Alonso
    5. Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  322.   322. Posted By: ZanteX
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:11 am 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Sutil
    5. Kovalainen

    Honourable mention to di Resta, Kobayashi, Rosberg and Alguersuari.

    [Reply]


  323.   323. Posted By: Keith Holtham
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:13 am 

    1. Vettel – A champion’s drive no doubt – yes he had the equipment and the luck but he saw off Webber (this year) – and matured as a driver and person.

    2. Button – Beat Hamilton both on the track and psychologically.

    3. Alonso – Destroyed Massa, and drove above his equipment.

    4. Ricciardo – In a minnow team showed his potential as a star of the future coming in mid-season

    5. Kovi – Effectively ended Jarno’s career with his speed and racecraft.

    6. Di Resta – would have been higher had he finished the season as strongly as he started it, would be good to see him move up into a tier 1 team.

    [Reply]


  324.   324. Posted By: Eric
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:20 am 

    1.Vettel
    2.JB
    3.F.Alonso
    4.Paul Di Resta
    5.Nico Rosberg?

    [Reply]


  325.   325. Posted By: DJR
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:24 am 

    Vettel – Needs no explanation, a hugely dominant season in comparison to his very quick team-mate.
    Button – Drove better this season than he did in 2009. A more competitive McLaren and he would of been fighting for the championship.
    Alonso – The Matador was hungry, determined and relentless. All the reasons he absolutely destroyed Massa’s soul and spirit.
    Kovalinen – Some incredible feats in a 3rd slowest car in the field. 2012 could be a big year for him.
    Sutil – Had a somewhat slow start to the season, but finished up 9th in the drivers standing, beating the three Renault drivers, and comprehensively beating Di Resta as well.

    [Reply]


  326.   326. Posted By: Ginger
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:29 am 

    1. Vet – It has to be
    2. Alo – Out performed the car consistently
    3. But – Beat Ham – enough said
    4. Kov – Consistently good all season
    5. PDR – Rookie of the year

    [Reply]


  327.   327. Posted By: Tom Power
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:29 am 

    Vettel, Alonso, Button, Algesuari, Hamilton. It’s with surprise I find myself putting Ham so far down the list but his moodiness really annoyed me this season. Algesuari just seemed consistent this year and I’d like to see him next to Vettel.

    [Reply]


  328.   328. Posted By: Rishi
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:34 am 

    After reading James’ hint I wondered whether I should tweak my list but have sensibly chosen not to. Bit surprised at so many votes for Heikki Kovalainen on here; he’s been quick (dominated Trulli) and is a nice guy but I’m not sure he’s done anything out of the top drawer (Jarno hated the car!). Lots of drivers inconsistent results-wise over the season – partly reflecting the competitiveness of the midfield (different cars quick at different times) I suspect though maybe that’s what has led me not to put them in Top 5 much. Admittedly it’s difficult to assess those in the “New for 2010″ cars but rather than Heikki I’d give a good shout to Jerome d’Ambrosio. Anyway here goes…

    1. SEBASTIAN VETTEL
    2. JENSON BUTTON
    3. FERNANDO ALONSO
    4. MARK WEBBER
    5. MICHAEL SCHUMACHER

    I quite like going all the way to 10, which yielded…

    6. LEWIS HAMILTON
    7. ADRIAN SUTIL
    8. NICO ROSBERG
    9. PAUL DI RESTA
    10. KAMUI KOBAYASHI

    (Honourable mention to Sergio Perez as well as as the aforementioned d’Ambrosio of course).

    [Reply]


  329.   329. Posted By: Kevin Loo
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:35 am 

    1. Vettel. He was just on another level to everyone else this season, including his team mate. Always had that extra speed for Q3, and even when he wasn’t leading, kept his cool and drove for maximum points. This is how you win a World Championship.

    2. Button. Out of all the drivers, I think Jenson adapted best and fastest to the new Pirelli tyres. He made them work, and used his experience and accumulated knowledge to make the right calls on tyre choices out on the track. Totally put into the shade his highly rated team mate, and seemed to galvanise McLaren around himself.

    3. Alonso. Showed why he is a double world champion, instead of a man who nearly won one. Picked up the 150th Italia and threw it around the track. Made the most of the Option tyre while he could, before the Ferrari’s weakness on the Prime would penalise him. Arguably made the 2011 Ferrari look better than it was.

    4. Kovalainen. Took the Lotus with him into Q2 a few times. Totally outperformed his team mate, even in qualifying – an area that Trulli has a reputation of being a quick lap specialist. Of all the drivers in the bottom 3 teams, Heikki was the one that I wished to see driving a faster car, to see what he could do with it.

    5. Schumacher. Firstly, for his racing at Monza. Was hugely entertaining. Secondly, for reducing his deficit to Rosberg from 70 points in 2010, to 13 points in 2011.

    [Reply]


  330.   330. Posted By: Fran
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:42 am 

    1. Jenson Button
    2. Sebastian Vettel
    3. Fernando Alonso
    4. Paul Di Resta
    5. Jamie Alguesuari

    [Reply]


  331.   331. Posted By: John tsoutis
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:42 am 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Kovailanen
    Di Resta

    [Reply]


  332.   332. Posted By: Tommy boy
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:52 am 

    Button
    Vettel
    Sutil
    Alonso
    Kovalinen

    [Reply]


  333.   333. Posted By: Dave
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:53 am 

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Button
    4. Di Resta
    5. Webber

    [Reply]


  334.   334. Posted By: veeru
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:55 am 

    alonso
    alonso
    vettel
    button
    di resta

    [Reply]


  335.   335. Posted By: Chris
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 1:06 am 

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Button

    these 3 were outstanding – a cut above the rest as for 4 and 5

    Rosberg
    Di Resta

    Rosberg did as he did last season, quietly picked up results with little fuss or fanfare – but quite consistently. Di Resta had a good season for a rookie against stiff competition in the mid field.

    [Reply]


  336.   336. Posted By: Eoin Leonard
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 1:15 am 

    1st: Vettel – Untouchable all year.

    2nd: Button – Out-performed car by a long way!

    3rd: Di Resta – Some awesome drives by the rookie

    4th Alonso – Out-performed car every mile of the way

    5th Kovalainen – Superb!

    [Reply]


  337.   337. Posted By: Alex
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 1:19 am 

    1. Vettel – as much as i can’t stand him after 2010, he did dominate quali and the races.

    2. Alonso – Beat nearly everyone in faster cars at some stage of the year, and had some great scraps with Webber (spa)

    3. Button – Showed ingenuity and ruthlessness this season to beat Hamilton.

    4. Webber – only for his move on Alonso through eau rouge and for his race in China

    5. Rosberg – Beat a seven time world champion. nuff said.

    Honourable mentions to perez, kovalinen (sorry about the spelling), senna, ricciardo.

    [Reply]


  338.   338. Posted By: JR
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 1:50 am 

    1. Alonso
    2. Vettel
    3. Button
    4. Alguersuari
    5. Di Resta

    [Reply]


  339.   339. Posted By: Kiran
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 1:53 am 

    Vettel – Had fastest car but his utter demolition of Webber and everyone else showed his class. Calm head as well.
    Alonso – The Ferrari was fastest car in 1 race but he pulled that thing kicking and screaming up to the podium on a good few occassions. Those wiley eyebrows still hold ultimate talent
    Button – Beating Hamilton aside he made the most of any driver out of the new tyres and still showed great pace while runing longer than everyone
    Sutil – Overshadowed by his rookie team mate early on but showed in the end his qualitywith a load more points. Qauli in Brazil was mighty
    Alguesuari – The TR developed a lot and he made the most of it’s supreme straight line pace. Good strategies helped.

    [Reply]


  340.   340. Posted By: Wu
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 1:55 am 

    1. Button – He beat his (suppusedly) superior teammate not only in points but in overtaking too. Also experienced one of the best drives in recent years.

    2. Alonso – Ok, Massa gave him an easy ride again this year, but his speed was still at a high standard despite knowing early on it will take a miracle to win.

    2. Vettel – Was hard for me to split those two up, so I didn’t. Vettel made the championship look easy, and if Vettel IS Schumi Jnr. then this kind of proves it. He was unstoppable. It’s a shame his teammate struggled this year, because the championship could have been closer with 2 number one drivers.

    4. Schumacher – Rosberg beat him this year by a rather flimsy margin compared with last year. But the amount of spectacular drives from Schumi, and great race pace for most of the season gives him this. Qualifying and over eager passing moves stopped him dominating his teammate. Even with his rubbish qualifing he would have finished ahead of his teammate if it were not for those few silly, but rather big mistakes.

    5. Di Resta as the best rookie. Sutil wasn’t bothered for most of the season which makes me slightly cynical about the excitement around Paul. He’s a good driver, and has potential to become bigger, but I must admit none of the new drivers have that ooomph that the world champions have. Yes, I even include Raikkonen in this.

    P.S. The qaulity of drivers we have is scary. I seriously had trouble seperating most of the drivers for number 4/5. Perhaps my top 3 should count instead of top 5.

    [Reply]


  341.   341. Posted By: formulasfera
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 1:56 am 

    Hamilton for his 3 wins

    Hamilton for his only pole-not-Red Bull

    Hamilton for bearing criticism and favoritism

    Hamilton for bearing holders on-track

    Hamilton for fighting in Korea as his best and never giving up!

    [Reply]


  342.   342. Posted By: Taypicala
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 2:03 am 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Di Resta
    5. Perez

    [Reply]


  343.   343. Posted By: Anthony
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 2:04 am 

    1. Vettel: Best car, but little mistakes and took the oportunity 100%, utterly destroyed his team mate.
    2. Jenson Button: Great consistency with a string of podiums, only downside is weak qualy. Beat Hamilton, which is no easy feat.
    3. Fernando Alonso: Destroyed his team mate, great consistency often beating one of the faster McLarens/RedBulls. Great starts too
    4. Lewis Hamilton: Patchy season, but the highs were too high as always, Great drive in Germany/China/Spain. Needs to cut the mistakes.
    5. Paul DiResta: Simply the best rookie since Lewis Hamilton, beat the more experienced and very fast Adrian Sutil the first half of the season until he had to up his game. Very fast in qualy.

    [Reply]


  344.   344. Posted By: FlyLikeAMouse
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 2:10 am 

    Right then, here goes;

    1: Sebastian Vettel
    No surprise here. Yes he had the fastest car on the grid, but he capitalised on it, totally dominated his teammate and annihilated the competition. Ruthless, clinical and (almost) faultless performance from Friday morning in Melbourne right through to Sunday afternoon in São Paulo. A worthy winner.

    2: Jenson Button
    Claimed second in the driver’s championship through consistency – something in which his teammate was severely laking this year. A couple of exceptional drives ensure him his spot in second on my list.

    3: Jaime Alguersuari
    Based on points tally, the second most dominant teammate vs teammate performance of the field. Although out-qualified by Buemi 12-7, he grew stronger as the season progressed, whereas Buemi faded. Would (and should) make a formidable number-two to Vettel in 2013.

    4. Heikki Kovalainen
    Unquestionably the winner of the “tier 2″ class. Solid performances in every race in which the car didn’t let him down and probably the most consistent driver on the grid. If he isn’t the first new-team driver to score points then it will be a terrible miscarriage of justice.

    5. Fernando Alonso
    Another season where Fernando has exceeded the abilities of the machinery with which he was provided. The fact that we got what was expected from him is the reason he makes my top 5. The fact that we didn’t get just a little bit MORE than we expected from him is the reason he misses out on 4th.

    Really couldn’t make that any more concise sorry, don’t hate me. :(

    [Reply]


  345.   345. Posted By: Rich C
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 3:01 am 

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Button
    Heidfeld
    Sutil

    Considering:
    their finishing positions
    ignoring the non-finishes
    how badly they beat their team mates
    if they beat superior cars

    [Reply]


  346.   346. Posted By: Rich C
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 3:04 am 

    However, considering only their performance relative to team-mates, and if they beat superior cars:
    Alonso
    Heidfeld
    Sutil
    Vettel
    Kobayoshi

    [Reply]


  347.   347. Posted By: Frank
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 3:05 am 

    1. button
    2. Vettel
    3. alonso
    4. jaime
    5. paul

    [Reply]


  348.   348. Posted By: Liam in Sydney
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 3:06 am 

    1. Vettel – although he had the best car, he all but trounced his teammate and destroyed everyone else. This season was not so much the car was that much better than others, but Vettel maximised the resources at his disposal and made almost no mistakes… all season long. Remarkable.

    2. Button – by season end he had put his more aggresive and some would argue more talented teammate in the shade. It goes to show what an experienced driver can do when he likes the way the tyres perform and when he can bring some wily racecraft to the table… something his teammate generally lacked.

    3. Perez – an impressive performance for a rookie to drive so conservatively on the high wearing tyres, but still come home in the points on numerous occasions. He would even have scored more points had he had the opportunity… given he had a huge crash at Monaco. A better rookie season than DiResta given PDR had many years of F1 testing under his belt.

    4. Schumacher – couldn’t quite get 100% pure speed in Quali, but put together quali-laps during the race to rapidly improve in the races relative to Nico. No one started races better than Schumi – if it wasn’t for his poor start in Australia, he would have doubled the next best starter in terms of cars passed on the opening lap during races. One can readily see that Schumi is slowly unlocking the secret of his car’s chassis and the way it uses it’s tyres. He will be even stronger in 2012.

    5. Kovailinen – In one of the worst cars on the grid, he made the most of his opportunities, tried to stay out of trouble to ensure he finished, nary dented the car, and maximised his performance given the overall lack of resources. This was surely Hekki’s best season as a driver, but a real shame it was in a car that almost no-one saw it.

    @ Gunner post 315. Hilarious!! :)

    [Reply]


  349.   349. Posted By: Mao,Xiaogang
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 3:13 am 

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Button
    Hamilton
    Di Resta

    [Reply]


  350.   350. Posted By: Ricky
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 3:38 am 

    1. Button
    2. Vettel
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovalainen
    5. di Resta

    [Reply]


  351.   351. Posted By: Colin
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 3:53 am 

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Button
    4. Roseberg
    5. Kobayashi

    [Reply]


  352.   352. Posted By: Jack Aitken
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 3:58 am 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Alguersuari
    5. Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  353.   353. Posted By: Leen
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 4:00 am 

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

    [Reply]


  354.   354. Posted By: Tony G
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 4:01 am 

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Button
    4. Webber
    5. Rosberg
    6. Hamilton
    7. Sutil
    8. Senna
    9. Schumacher
    10.Di Resta

    [Reply]


  355.   355. Posted By: Wonn
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 4:10 am 

    1. Vettel 2. Alonso 3. Button 4. Schumacher 5. DiResta

    [Reply]


  356.   356. Posted By: Robert Gunning
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 4:11 am 

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Jenson Button
    3. Fernando Alonso
    4. Mark Webber
    5. Nico Rosberg

    [Reply]


  357.   357. Posted By: Dj
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 4:17 am 

    * Vettel – he’s the champ isn’t he ?
    * Button – he’s taking over as the number 1 driver in mclaren :D
    * Alonso – he outperforms the car every single time
    * Kovalainen – he outperforms HIS car every single time. I’m a big Jarno Trulli fans, but I do think that he should retire now, the way he’s blown away to pieces this season by Heiki
    * DiResta/Perez – I can’t decide. These two perform exceptionally well for a rookie. Put Jamie Alguesuari into the mix, and it’s a tough thing to choose for the final spot. But I have to go with Perez, with him beating Kamui on several occasion, and racking up points for Sauber when it seems out of the question.

    [Reply]


  358.   358. Posted By: Aryan
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 4:21 am 

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Button
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Sutil

    Di resta gave Sutil a very good run for his money, and I think he has much more potential than the German, but in 2011, Sutil was still the better driver.

    [Reply]


  359.   359. Posted By: Bludd
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 4:31 am 

    1. Vettel – almost faultless, nailed the tyres
    2. Button – his best season yet, Canada was amazing
    3. Alonso – won in a car which didn’t work on hard tyres
    4. Rosberg – some good drives, beat Schumi again
    5. Hamilton – rocky year, but some great victories and drives

    [Reply]


  360.   360. Posted By: Matt
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 4:33 am 

    1. Vettel – Completely dominant
    2. Button – Bested his team mate, ultra-consistent
    3. Alonso – Extracted so much more from the Ferrari than Massa
    4. Kovailanen – Consumate team leader performance for a developing team. Never gave up.
    5. Webber – Not his best year, but you’d prefer him in your car more than most, pulled some great passes, and did well considering he frequently wasn’t free to exploit the mid-corner pace of the RB7, stuck behind someone else who he couldn’t pass down the straights. Hoping next years’ car suits him better.

    [Reply]


  361.   361. Posted By: Gamal Liranzo Tavarez
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 4:47 am 

    1) Sebastian Vettel
    2) Jenson Button
    3) Fernando Alonso
    4) Nico Rosberg
    5) Heiki Kovalainen

    Rookie of the Year: Paul di Resta.

    [Reply]


  362.   362. Posted By: JB
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 5:15 am 

    OK, just a quick scroll through to gain some opinions of the public. Here is my top5:

    1. Vettel – no doubt about this one because despite driving in the benchmark car, he really set a NEW level (a very high bar) for others to catch up.
    2. Alonso – The never give spirit and ALWAYS pushing the (uncompetitive) Ferrari to great heights.
    3. Button – The big surprise that he systematically plan his way and has paid off and end up being better than Hamilton (overall).
    4. Perez – He is very consistent and making the most out of the Sauber package. Moreover, the recovery from Monaco itself is seriously impressive.
    5. Di Resta – Although a lot of mistake being a n00b, he has proven that he is faster in many occasions compared to his team mate.

    James Allen, do you agree with me? :)

    [Reply]


  363.   363. Posted By: alan blanco
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 5:16 am 

    Vettel
    button
    webber
    alonso
    hamilton

    [Reply]


  364.   364. Posted By: build
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 5:29 am 

    James,
    Doubt I’ll be even close to your picks, I think it’s a very personal thing, but here goes …

    1. Fernando Alonso
    Alonso has been a bit of a Terminator this season, relentless, sector after sector, lap after lap. Almost scary.

    2. Sebastian Vettel
    Consistency is the word. Not as perfect as Alonso but *damned* good, although I would have liked to see an inspired performance like his STR days, a fight with Button in Canada might just have pushed him to the top.

    3. Jenson Button
    Inspired, intelligent races but not in all of them, however he was always there or there abouts.

    4. Heikki Kovalainen
    Heikki was the Alonso of the rear of the grid. Consistent, tenacious and even relentless. Hopefully he will be terrorising the midfield next year. Other drivers must be saying “I’ll have what his having”.

    5. Adrian Sutil
    Consistent with a couple of inspired drives and more importantly on the money with 9th in the WDC.

    5th I found rather difficult. It was between FI, STR and Sauber drivers. They all had a couple of inspired races. Consistency counted but who can remember the why’s and wherefores of all the races, I can’t so I had to go with my gut and pick Adrian Sutil, although I must admit to a pointless dislike of the boy. Judging by the number of votes for DiResta I’m obviously wrong.

    I’ll add that the grid these days is lacking characters. Apart from Button and Webber they are a very bland bunch. We need characters on the grid, blokes like Rosberg, Mansell, Lauda, etc to inspire the fans. Woops, I’ll call the nurse and take my teeth out, it’s time for my medication.

    beers,

    [Reply]


  365.   365. Posted By: Santiago
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 5:58 am 

    Vettel – had the same car as Webber, did an almost perfect season on it! it’s no luck, pure talent..
    Alonso – showed why he is one of the best drivers on the grid, the car was third, he was constant podium finisher
    Button – showed he has matured as a driver and that with the proper car he can fight for a title again
    Di Resta – rookie of the year, had a great car, was right on Sutils tail all season, great driver
    Perez – He showed a great talent on tyre management, speed, and out qualified Kamui very often.. did a great job all season..

    [Reply]


  366.   366. Posted By: Zack
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 6:01 am 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Kovalainen
    Alguersuari

    [Reply]


  367.   367. Posted By: 69bhp
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 6:12 am 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Hamilton
    Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  368.   368. Posted By: For sure
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 6:12 am 

    1.Vettel
    2.Button
    3.Alonso
    4.Schumacher
    5.Paul Di Resta

    [Reply]

    For sure Reply:

    You may ask why Schumacher is there when his teammate isn’t who out-pointed him. The reason is that Nico is the point guy at this stage where as Schumacher took more gamble, since he isn’t fighting for championship he might as well gamble. Some of the heights he reached were incredibly entertaining. In Canada, he went from p18 to p2 in 20 laps window or something like that. In Spa, he started at 24th and finished 5th thanks to safety car but still that was awesome. And that Monza race.

    [Reply]


  369.   369. Posted By: tim
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 6:35 am 

    Worst pouters of 2011

    1) Trulli
    2) Massa
    3) Hamilton
    4) Heidfeld
    5) Alonso

    [Reply]


  370.   370. Posted By: Mark V
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 6:35 am 

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

    My picks are based on an admittedly unscientific combination of overall standings, how well the driver did compared to their teammate, and something rather vague and indefinable that we could label the “it” factor.

    [Reply]


  371.   371. Posted By: Erik
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 6:59 am 

    1) Vettel – The best driver in the best car delivered dominance throughout the season.

    2a) daylight

    2b) Button – Comprehensively outperformed Hamilton and took the battle up to Vettel in the second half of the season.

    3) Alonso – Performed miracles in a car that was uncompetitive compared to Red Bull and McLaren

    4) Webber – Very very consistent, but unspectacular, season. Although many haven’t rated Webber he finished on the podium on 10 occasions in 2011, retired once, and everything else was top 5 (not bad for a #2 driver!)

    5) Kamui Kobayashi – Ten top 10s in the Sauber is no mean effort, although his overtaking heroics of 2010 were somewhat dented by the introduction of DRS.

    [Reply]

    Blaize Reply:

    “4) Webber – Very very consistent, but unspectacular, season. Although many haven’t rated Webber he finished on the podium on 10 occasions in 2011, retired once, and everything else was top 5 (not bad for a #2 driver!)”

    last part made me almost choke on my dinner lol

    [Reply]


  372.   372. Posted By: john
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 7:24 am 

    got to go for

    vettel
    button
    webber
    di resta
    schumacher

    [Reply]


  373.   373. Posted By: Sam
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 7:36 am 

    1) Alonso
    2) Button
    3) Vettel
    4) Di Resta
    5) Kovalainen

    Alonso – I can’t fault him for driving the absolute balls off that Ferrari and never giving up.

    I have to admit i didn’t really notice the quality of Button until this season – What an intellegent racer – Made the best out of every opportunitiy even if his qualifying wasn’t lightening quick.

    Vettel was amazing in qualifying and on race days but had a pretty stand out car for the majority of the year. I only really remember one instance of seeing him having to race other drivers this season (Monza)so hard to judge where he stands in those quarters to be honest.

    Di Resta has proven himself a star in the force india and hope to see him have another great year in 2012

    and Heikki blew me away with his efforts this season.

    [Reply]


  374.   374. Posted By: jumpstart
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 8:00 am 

    1/ Vettel
    the easiest way to justify failure is to say that VET had the fastest car – when in fact he hadn’t, quite a few times this season
    what about that magic qually boost button that McLarens suspect him of pressing?

    2/ Button
    all my respect to this gentleman, turned into the biggest threat to the leading car when not in the lead
    no forgiveness for the final lap in Canada as from a RB fan

    3/ Alonso
    unbelievable starts in a car that seemed to have aerodynamics of a brick this season

    4/ Kovalainen
    always nice to see a man sorting out problems and finding his own right way, hope to see him leading Caterham up through the midfield in 2012

    5/ Alguersuari
    thought of Schumi but 5th place in an amateur vote for a 7-times world champ is of little value
    selected Jaime because he really made many stop thinking of him as of a rent driver in 2011
    hope Dr Marko shares my opinion

    [Reply]


  375.   375. Posted By: quest
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 8:01 am 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Heidfeld
    Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  376.   376. Posted By: Chiranjeev
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 8:05 am 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Sutil
    Hamilton

    [Reply]


  377.   377. Posted By: karthick
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 8:08 am 

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Button
    Kovalinen
    Di Resta

    [Reply]


  378.   378. Posted By: RichTea08
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 8:49 am 

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

    [Reply]


  379.   379. Posted By: CMR
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 8:54 am 

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Jenson Button
    3. Fernando Alonso
    4. Paul di Resta
    5. Heikki Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  380.   380. Posted By: Syn
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 9:15 am 

    1. Vettel – supreme in all departments
    2. Alonso – outperformed the car
    3. Button – tenacious and deceptively quick
    4. Alguersuari – a charger
    5. Kovalainen – the fire still burns

    [Reply]


  381.   381. Posted By: Rdw
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 9:24 am 

    vettel
    button
    alonso
    kovalinen
    di resta

    [Reply]


  382.   382. Posted By: Carl Sheen
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 9:25 am 

    Vettel – Perfection in the best car
    Button – Relentlessly consistent
    Kovelainen – “Dominated” the new team battle
    Sutil – Outshone early on by rookie team mate but pulled out some great drives later on and finished well clear of Di Resta
    Alonso – consistently outperformed his dog of a car

    [Reply]


  383.   383. Posted By: Triangle
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 9:28 am 

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

    [Reply]

    Triangle Reply:

    I can’t see a way in which JA won’t put Hamilton in top 5, wasn’t sure whether to put him before or after Alonso

    [Reply]


  384.   384. Posted By: Mike J
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 9:30 am 

    Well, just home from work on a Friday night in Australia and I’m already behind by 401 votes. James, always a problem with these polls being listed overnight our time, some of us have to work during the day!!

    Now I’m doing a ‘Webber’, poor start and lets hope I make a 3rd or 4th place!

    1. Vettel – can’t go past him. Sure, he was in the best car, but he got the best out of it, and more. He matured greatly from last season and always found the tremendous speed over 1 lap in quail when it counted. Then just controlled the races from the front. Passing at Monza and Spa made a lot of his ‘knockers’ think again.

    2. Button – Tremendous season and out drove and out thought his champion team mate. Great drives in Canada, Belgium, Japan and Monaco. Quiet perseverance and never say never approach got him second in the WDC.

    3. Alonso – Always put his car in the races where it should have not been. Still the class driver of the field. Hope that Ferrari can deliver a car worthy of him. Ruthless and aggressive and always fast. Managed to get podiums when the car was way off the pace.

    4. Webber – he has a lot of ‘detractors’ which rate his season poor however he did score more points than last year, had KERS failures in quali in the first 5 out of 6 races and again in Canada (SV had 2 during this time), had poor starts only improving when RB changed back to 2010 setup (why so long?), made up 24 lost places at starts, still finished 3rd in WDC, had fantastic battles with Alonso and pass of the year, plus DHL Fastest lap award. I can’t leave him out o the 5

    5. Sutil – Slow start to the season but came home ‘on fire’. Drove very well in the end and it was mainly due to him that secured Force –India 6th place in the WCC and beating a ‘highly’ regarded team mate who gets a lot of praise. It will be interesting to see how DiResta performs in his second season, just like Kamui.

    [Reply]


  385.   385. Posted By: K
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 9:32 am 

    1 Alonso
    2 Button
    3 Webber
    4 Hamilton
    5 Senna

    Vettel?? Pff….

    [Reply]


  386.   386. Posted By: F1 dingo
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 9:48 am 

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Button
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Sutil

    [Reply]


  387.   387. Posted By: Baart
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 9:49 am 

    Here is my list:

    1. Vettel – for winning almost every quali
    2. Alonso – for squeezing everything from F150
    3. Button – for dominance in McLaren
    4. Di Grassi – my rookie of the year 2011
    5. Sutil – for 9. place in championships.

    [Reply]

    Ben Reply:

    Di Grassi didn’t race this year. Did you mean Di Resta?

    [Reply]

    Baart Reply:

    Naturally ! Thanks for notice :)

    1. Vettel – for winning almost every quali
    2. Alonso – for squeezing everything from F150
    3. Button – for dominance in McLaren
    4. Di Resta – my rookie of the year 2011
    5. Sutil – for 9. place in championships.

    Too large circulation of new different names :)

    [Reply]


  388.   388. Posted By: Andy
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 9:52 am 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Kovalainen
    Sutil

    [Reply]


  389.   389. Posted By: damo
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 9:55 am 

    1. jenson button

    2. sebastian vettel

    3. fernando alonso

    4. paul di resta

    5. jaime algersuari.

    [Reply]


  390.   390. Posted By: Rob Howells
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 9:56 am 

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

    [Reply]


  391.   391. Posted By: Seye
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 10:07 am 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Diresta

    [Reply]


  392.   392. Posted By: Redwan H
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 10:11 am 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Di Resta
    5. Algersuari

    [Reply]


  393.   393. Posted By: Cookie
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 10:13 am 

    1) Vettel
    2) Alonso
    3) Button
    4) Di Resta
    5) Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  394.   394. Posted By: Blackacre
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 10:14 am 

    Button
    Vettel
    Alonso
    Alguesuari
    Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  395.   395. Posted By: Helena
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 10:16 am 

    1. Vettel. Had the best car, but his performance is demonstrated by comparing him with his team-mate. Brilliant qualifiying, almost flawless race driving.

    2. Button. Beat Hamilton, very consistent.

    3. Alonso. Out-performed his car, streets ahead of Massa.

    4. Kovalainen. Got the most out of his car, consistent, best of “new” teams.

    5. Paul di Resta – excellent rookie season. Seems to have superb grasp of the different factors and strategies which affect performance as well as being an excellent driver.

    [Reply]


  396.   396. Posted By: [MISTER]
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 10:22 am 

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Button
    Alguersuari
    Di Resta

    [Reply]


  397.   397. Posted By: Marc Foz
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 10:29 am 

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

    [Reply]


  398.   398. Posted By: Andrew J
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 10:30 am 

    1. Button
    Possibly the most improved driver of the year, scored almost as many points as Vettel in the second half of the season, despite having an inferior car. Outshone his team-mate fairly emphatically through consistent calculated performances. Would have been my second placed driver, but because of his win in Canada, despite five pit stops and drive through penalty, he just pips Vettel to top.

    2. Vettel
    Goes without saying. He may have had the best car on the grid but the performances he wrung out of it compared to his team-mate (who was no slouch either) were outstanding, and the way he still got quick laps out of a car with a dodgy gearbox deserves full credit.

    3. Alonso
    Consistently got great performances out of a relatively poor car. The 150th Ferrari wasn’t much of a landmark at all, but Alonso made it look much better than it was. Deserves his top 3 place if only for his superb starts

    4. Algesuari
    You’d be forgiven for thinking Torro Rosso was one of the top teams at times this season. Some good points-scoring finishes and definitely the best (in my opinion) of the midfield runners

    5. Kovalainen
    Great performances often overlooked because they weren’t near the front of the field. The only driver in the new teams to really impress. Deserves a drive in a better car, as I think he has improved significantly since his McLaren days.

    [Reply]


  399.   399. Posted By: David Walker
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 10:32 am 

    1 Sebastian Vettel – Imperious form throughout the season and world champion, need I say more

    2 Jenson Button – his best season ever in my opinion and consistently showed terrific race-craft

    3 Fernando Alonso – extracted the optimum performance with every race from that Ferrari

    4 Paul di Resta – just shades rookie of the year ahead of Perez for me. Had he not been let down by some strategy calls, he probably
    would have scored more points and challenged Sutil more consistently in the race

    5 Ricciardo – made the most of every oppurtunity he had in the HRT and gave Liuzzi and the other new teams a run for their money, should be in a Toro Rosso next year

    Drivers who just missed out on my top five were Alguesuari, Sutil and Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  400.   400. Posted By: Richard Mee
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 10:38 am 

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Kovalainen
    Button
    DiResta

    The top drivers in each of the top teams must be on the list. Alonso and Vettel in almost joint 1st place but for different reasons.

    Button has some epic drives but he still lacks than last % point in terms of raw speed.

    I don’t think anyone in Merc, LR, Sauber, Williams etc did enough.

    Kovalainen put the Lotus about as high as it could have got and utterly destroyed Trulli into the bargain. He edges Button.

    Which leaves Force India which is a tricky one to pick. It was easy to forget DiResta was on his Rookie year. Arian Sutil came alive half way through the season and you have to say he was faster than DiResta in the final races. But in all, I think DiResta just edges it for me.

    [Reply]


  401.   401. Posted By: Dan Morris
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 10:40 am 

    1: Vettel – doesn’t really need an explanation. Could be the car but Webber faltered.

    2: Button – consistently out raced and out thought his ‘faster’ team mate. Like a fine wine is getting better and better.

    3: Alguesuari – despite doubts about his future turned the wick up and consistently put an average car in the points.

    4: Kovalainen – out qualified and out raced his pretty handy team mate.

    5: Alonso – put a below par Ferrari where it shouldn’t have been most of the time.

    [Reply]


  402.   402. Posted By: dan b
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 10:46 am 

    1 button
    2 vettel
    3 alonso
    4 di resta
    5 kovalainen

    [Reply]


  403.   403. Posted By: Timo
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 10:50 am 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Algesuari

    [Reply]


  404.   404. Posted By: Elar
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 10:53 am 

    1.Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Sutil

    [Reply]


  405.   405. Posted By: Mr SQuiggle
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 11:13 am 

    Ok – I have one over-arching rule, a driver needed to be in all races to make it into my top five. No disrespect intended to Nick, Bruno, or others, but its hard to get driver of the year if you are part time.

    1- Vettel: Car and Driver in a symbiotic relationship. Both were untouchable.

    2 -Button: Drove better than in his Championship year. His best driving yet.

    3- Di Resta: a rookie who completed the most 2011 laps in the field? C’mon, that’s a top three

    4- Alonso: good but not quite great.

    5 – Alguesauri – Long stints and consistency. Top ten finishes with a car not otherwise up to it.

    Honourable mention to Mark Webber. Mark was the best on-track racer, but the team did not manage his old dog/new tricks issues.

    [Reply]


  406.   406. Posted By: efBir
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 11:23 am 

    1. Vettel
    For incredible consistence, sheer pace and maturity.

    2. Button
    For beating a teammate who has never beaten with his strong mentality, consistency and mental strength.

    3. Alonso
    For carrying the car where it didn’t belong.

    4. Kovalainen
    For driving as an almost mid-field driver in a non-mid-field car, trashing his team-mate and consistent run.

    5. Sutil
    For beating his team-mate fair and square and getting the results when team and he needed it.

    [Reply]


  407.   407. Posted By: Jim
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 11:28 am 

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

    [Reply]


  408.   408. Posted By: David
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 11:34 am 

    1. Vettel (11 victoires, could easily have been more)

    2. Alonso

    3. Button

    4. Kovalienen

    5. Schumacher (If you forget the first 5 races, dynamite of the start line).

    [Reply]


  409.   409. Posted By: Chris Stewart
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 11:34 am 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Perez

    [Reply]


  410.   410. Posted By: Mutahir Younus
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 11:43 am 

    1) Vettel
    2) Alonso
    3) jenson
    4) Algersuari
    5) sutil

    [Reply]


  411.   411. Posted By: Andys
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 11:46 am 

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Button
    4. Kovalainen
    5. Paul di Resta

    [Reply]


  412.   412. Posted By: Brad
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 11:52 am 

    Can’t help but agree with Helena… my list is the same…

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Jenson Button
    3. Fernando Alonso
    4. Heikki Kovalainen
    5. Paul Di Resta

    [Reply]


  413.   413. Posted By: Richard Hyde
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:09 pm 

    1. Vettel – Cut out the silly mistakes of the past 2 seasons to emerge totally dominant, ableit in the best car.

    2. Button – Driving better than ever, and the only guy to regularly look like challenging Vettel. Now cemented at McLaren when everyone predicted Lewis would blow him away.

    3. Alonso – Some truly gritty performances in a car often on the ragged edge. The gap between him and his team-mate speaks volumes.

    4. Kovalainen – Worked wonders in an inferior Lotus, making Q2 on a good number of occasions. Some lightning starts to gain places early on, if only he’d had KERS to defend them with…

    5. Schumacher – He’s almost had to ‘re-learn’ Formula 1 but with new found speed, first lap bravery and some wily tactics he’s regularly shown his much touted team-mate the way home.

    [Reply]

    Richard Hyde Reply:

    You should have seen the beaming smile on Heikki’s face when I told him I though he’d been brilliant all season at a signing session in Abu Dhabi. I’m his new best mate!

    [Reply]


  414.   414. Posted By: James Bolton
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:10 pm 

    It’s got to be Vettel first. As someone above mentioned his qualifying performances were frequently astonishing. And he delivered beautifully in every single race bar Germany.

    Jenson is my pick for second best driver of 2011. On many occasions he drove brilliantly and I don’t think anybody could have got more out of the McLaren than he did.

    Alonso is third because like Jenson, he got everything out of his Ferrari. You only have to compare his performances to Felipe Massa’s to see just how amazing Alonso was this year. His starts in Spain and Italy were sensational too.

    Nico Rosberg is my fourth best driver of 2011. Many will disagree with this choice but if you look at his lap times you can see just how consistent he was. The car was only capable of finishing sixth behind the Red Bulls, McLarens and Alonso and that’s exactly what Rosberg did. He was so consistent and he got everything out of the Merc.

    Alguersuari is my pick for fifth best driver of the year. Again, I’m sure many will disagree but he drove brilliantly on many occasions and throughout the whole season he was under intense pressure. I read recently that he only avoided being dropped because he got a few points in Monaco but if I was STR, I would keep him for 2012 and would seriously consider him for Webber’s seat in 2013.

    [Reply]


  415.   415. Posted By: Trixie
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:14 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Button
    4. Rosberg
    5. Di Resta

    Vettel for doing the most winning job of the season; Alonso for his tenacity, uncompromising capability to extract the maximum out of an underperforming car; Button for his understated way of doing a better job than his prodigious teammate; Rosberg for outscoring Schumacher 2 years in a row; and di Resta for a very noteworthy rookie season.

    [Reply]


  416.   416. Posted By: Grit
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:18 pm 

    1.Hamilton – for providing the most entertainment during the year, on & off the track
    2. Massa – for getting into a hissy fit because of the above, and the best radio message of the year.
    3.Heidfeld – for the exploding car and best beard
    4. Trulli – because it’s all the steering’s fault
    5. Gutierrez – for not being in Canada

    [Reply]


  417.   417. Posted By: Vanessa
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:27 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Alguesuari
    5. Kovolainen

    [Reply]


  418.   418. Posted By: Glenn
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 12:27 pm 

    1. Vettel (without question)
    2. Button (outperformed his teammate and half of RBR)
    3. Alonso (the car seemed like rubbish but he still achieved a lot)
    4. Rosberg (The Great Schumi should have his measure by now but doesn’t)
    5. Webber (he just needs to improve his 1st stint)

    [Reply]


  419.   419. Posted By: Al
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 1:02 pm 

    1. Hamilton. The best driver in F1, always at the front, had to wring every last bit of performance from the car.

    2. Button. A great year for Jenson, half of the best driver pairing I have ever seen.

    3. Schumacher. Back with a bang or two, but ever increasing respect for the man, he is a racer, not someone who is bothered about “his statistics” unlike many MS fans…

    4. Rosberg. Clearly a driver of massive ability.

    5. Kovalainen. Best of the new teams, drivers, got increasingly close to established teams, drover very well.

    Vettel, no mention. He did an excecllent job of delivering with the most dominant car in years, but all he did was hit an open goal, when asked questions, he failed to deliver, probably not even the 10th best overtaker in F1.

    [Reply]


  420.   420. Posted By: Parthi
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 1:04 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Perez
    Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  421.   421. Posted By: Roo F1
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 1:07 pm 

    1) Button (surprised people with his ability)
    2) Di Resta (sterling and stable first season)
    3) Alonso (out-drove a crappy car time after time)
    4) Hamilton (only person who entertained in 2011)
    5) Perez (boring, but strong and consistent ability)

    [Reply]


  422.   422. Posted By: DK
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 1:07 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  423.   423. Posted By: Josh
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 1:08 pm 

    1. button
    2. Alonso
    3. Vettel
    4. Kobayashi
    5. Raikkonen – because, while being exiled, he was still the hot topic and his return can only boost F1′s viewership

    [Reply]


  424.   424. Posted By: Roo F1
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 1:09 pm 

    FYI no need for hard work, after a 10 second skim I can see the results are:

    1) Adrian Newey / Vettel
    2) Button
    3) Alonso
    4) Di Resta
    5) Kovalainen

    You’re welcome ;)

    [Reply]


  425.   425. Posted By: Haydn Lowe
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 1:12 pm 

    1. Vettel – Just an incredible season. Echoes of Schumacher in 02/04, but made his team-mate look midfield in the sister car to boot.
    2. Button – Had the fastest car at times during races and made it count every time he did. Drove like a champion all season.
    3. Alonso – Made a below-par Ferrari look far, FAR better than it was. But for the uncompetitive pace on harder tyres Alonso would have made an even better haul of podiums/wins (and probably taken 2nd place in this list too…)
    4. Kobayashi – Great entertainment value as always, made some interesting strategy calls work really well and outscored his talented team mate by over 100%
    5. Di Resta – Really tough call this one. I wanted to include my rookie of the year in this list despite the fact that his team-mate had a superb season too. Perez was also great, but I consider Di Resta to be a more ‘complete’ driver. Can see him in a top 3 car in the next 2-3 seasons.

    [Reply]


  426.   426. Posted By: Alex Lawton
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 1:12 pm 

    1) Vettel
    2) Alonso
    3) Button
    4) Di Resta
    5) Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  427.   427. Posted By: Pierre
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 1:16 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Hamilton
    Sutil

    [Reply]


  428.   428. Posted By: JohnBt
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 1:24 pm 

    vettelbuttonalonsoperezdiresta

    [Reply]


  429.   429. Posted By: Kenny Carwash
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 1:30 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    How could it be anyone else?

    2. Jenson Button
    Probably his finest season. Made the most of his chances in the MP4-26 and the only man to threaten Vettel.

    3. Fernando Alonso
    A poor year for Ferrari. Fernando got the most out of his machinery and then some: The F150 was not really a race-winning car.

    4. Heikki Kovalainen
    In a season where Team Lotus edged closer to the established teams, Heikki got the job done with consistent performances in qualifying and mixed it with Williams and Toro Rosso when he could.

    5. Jaime Alguersuari
    Faced with losing his drive early in the season, the young Spaniard responded in the best way possible. He drove with intelligence and maturity to regularly score points from Canada onwards.

    [Reply]


  430.   430. Posted By: Paul J
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 1:36 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Sutil
    4. Alonso
    5. Kovalinen

    [Reply]


  431.   431. Posted By: Charlie B
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 1:41 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Di Resta
    5. Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  432.   432. Posted By: Jimbo
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 1:57 pm 

    1. Vettel. Yes, he had a car advantage, but, as evidenced by his performance against his team mate, in the same car, he has simply been in a class of his own this year, in every department.

    2. Button. Everyone (me included) thought Lewis would blow Jenson away, but the challenge seems to have made him stronger. Probably equal to Vettel in “race intelligence”. Top bloke too!

    3. Alonso. Despite the “I give up” blip, another display of raw racing attitude from Fernando, once again having to transcend an inadequate car.

    4. Schumacher. It would’ve been so easy for MSC to walk away once he realised Merc were going to be nowhere near the podium, but he’s got his head down and stuck it out. Fair play.

    5. Webber. Tough choice not to include some of the midfield guys but there has to be a place in the top 5 for Mark, purely by virtue of that pass at Eau Rouge. Balls of steel, and the most straight talking guy on the grid!

    [Reply]


  433.   433. Posted By: Glen D
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 2:05 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Rosberg
    Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  434.   434. Posted By: Ben James
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 2:06 pm 

    Hi James,

    My top 5 are:

    Sebastian Vettel
    Jenson Button
    Fernando Alonso
    Paul Di Resta
    Bruno Senna

    [Reply]


  435.   435. Posted By: maria
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 2:09 pm 

    1.Vettel
    2.Alonso
    3.Button
    4.Alguersuari
    5.Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  436.   436. Posted By: Matt
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 2:14 pm 

    1. Vettel-Yes he had the best car, but he made Webber look foolish this year despite Mark’s proven ability as a top driver. As with Schumacher, pushed too far in the practice sessions sometimes but that does not matter on race day. I can only think of one mistake he made in a race this year, Canada 2011. Dominance unseen since Schumacher-both in numbers and ability.

    2. Alonso-Description of Vettel sums it up well, after a mediocre 2009 and difficult 2010, looks to be back to his best form.

    3. Button-Has found greater consistency in the races and seems to be edging his way into the team leader position. His finest ever season.

    4. Kovalainen-Dominated Trulli at Lotus this year, very consistent, few mistakes and always looked like he pushed the maximum out of the car. Looks to have recovered to his best form after a slump at McLaren in 2009.

    5. Sutil-Looked more consistent this year but may not have done enough to save his seat due to an impressive year from di Resta. Narrowly beats the Scot for my 5th place.

    [Reply]


  437.   437. Posted By: theRoswellite
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 2:25 pm 

    (…as this is entry 400+, I’m sure it is for my enjoyment only)

    1. Vet the Jet Why: Check out his qualifying record…oh wait, make that his wins for the year…oh wait, how about his margin of dominance over one M. Webber…oh wait…his “checking out” on the opening lap…(well you get the idea).

    2. The Red Baron Why: Fernando brings it irregardless of the limitations of the car, but if you want the real reason just take a very deep look into the eyes of Mr. Massa.

    3. The Marathon Man Why: Does anyone show more equanimity in victory or defeat than Jensen…a sportsman of the first order. If you need more reason than that speak with Lewis.

    4. The Piano Man Why: Outside the top 4 teams Sutil is the fastest and the highest placed…doing more with less is always impressive.

    5. Mr. Class Himself Why: Because Rubens has done it longer and with more elan than ANYONE ELSE IN THE HISTORY OF THE SPORT…please, a little credit where credit is due. (…so long, you will be missed)

    [Reply]

    Dave Aston Reply:

    I think it’s ‘Jenson’.

    [Reply]

    theRoswellite Reply:

    Indeed, I stand well corrected.

    [Reply]


  438.   438. Posted By: Adam Taylor
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 2:28 pm 

    1, Vettel – I think the title on the book says it all
    2, Button – Had the upper hand over Hamilton for most of the season, winner of the best GP of the season in Canada hit 12 podiums throughout the season.
    3, Alonso – Always there or there abouts and outperformed Massa massively this season and reaching the podium 10 times with 1 win
    4, Kovalainen – Tremendous consistency and pushing the midfield teams at times, also managed to reach Q2 on occasions
    5, Alguersuari – This was the most difficult decision. A toss up between Sutil, De Resta and Kobayashi. Jaimes season really started in Canada having been in the top top 7 of the last 13 races.

    [Reply]


  439.   439. Posted By: Stephen Graham
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 2:32 pm 

    Alonso (Rings the neck out of an underperforming car and scores twice the points of his team mate)

    Button (Beat his team mate, finished ahead of a much better RBR car)

    Vettel (May have the best car, but did very little wrong, had a stratergy that worked with him being in front and made it work)

    Schumacher (Just keeps getting better)

    Di Rester (Excellent rookie season)

    [Reply]


  440.   440. Posted By: ArunasNesvarbu
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 2:46 pm 

    1. S. Vettel – Master of qualyfing, no mistakes, very consistent.
    2. J. Button – Very consistent all season, first who beat Hamilton.
    3. F. Alonso – what he was able to achieve with that kind of car was outstanding. Briliant drive.
    4. J. Algersuary – best who have battled up through the field after poor qualyfing.
    5. A. Sutil – realy don’t understand what was he thinking in first part of the season. Very fast in wet. Often best of rest, among leaders.

    [Reply]


  441.   441. Posted By: breda
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 2:50 pm 

    1: vettel
    2: button
    3: di resta
    4: alonso
    5: perez

    [Reply]


  442.   442. Posted By: Eduan
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 3:15 pm 

    My Top 5 is:
    1. Button
    He is been brilliant and very consistent this year and he is the first team mate to beat Lewis Hamilton.
    2. Algesuari
    He was under pressure in the year but he responded with great drives into the points from very low grid starts.
    3.Alonso
    Completely out drove the 150 italia and really drove a fantastic with some breathtaking starts and overtaking maneuvers(Brazil). My Driver of the year!
    4. Kovalainen
    Out qualified Trulli most of the rounds this year and even some of the midfield teams. I was really impressed by his progress.
    5. Schumacher
    He stepped up his game considerably this year and Rosberg did not have the upper hand in pace this year as last year. Schumacher was the starter of the season!

    [Reply]


  443.   443. Posted By: Paul H
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 3:25 pm 

    1) Button. For most impressive driver. By far his best overall performance over a whole season and the fact that he continues to improve bodes well for next season. His drive in Canada was outstanding and to my eyes, was the drive of the season, although I enjoyed the victory in Japan too due to the significance.

    2) Vettel. For most consistent. Only really put under pressure in a few races but after the silly mistakes of 2010 this year was a massive turn around. Showed his supreme feel for a car in mastering the qualifying lap requirements and then using that raw speed at the start of a race to cruise away. I still have doubts about his racecraft and how he would deal under a lot of pressure but can’t judge that until he is in the situation and at the moment the combined package of Vettel and Red Bull is sublime. He takes practically wins the race in the qualifying session but I do believe that his competitors will deal with this better next season.

    3)Alonso. For out driving his car. Drove the pants off his car and achieved significantly more than Ferrari deserved. I think Massa showed the true pace of the car and allowed us to appreciate just how Alonse is the best all round package on the grid.

    4)Di Resta. Rookie of the year. This was a really difficult one and I did indeed flip a two pence of truth to decide between Di Resta and Perez. Both have been fantastic this year and outshone drivers of more experience. Both seem very mature and I expect a good step up from both next year although I think with Di Resta’s extra experience that he offers more to the team at this moment besides pure speed.

    5) Kovalainen. Best of the rest. I thought he had a good season last year but this year he really took on the team leader mantle. Previously I’ve always seem him as a good number two but his performances for Team Lotus and the way he appears to operate within the team have really impressed me. He has demonstrated raw speed, good race craft, made use of experience and really seems to be thriving on encouraging the team and being part of the gestation of a new team.

    [Reply]


  444.   444. Posted By: Ivor
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 3:29 pm 

    Trulli
    Barrichello
    Chandhok

    [Reply]


  445.   445. Posted By: Ben
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 3:33 pm 

    1) Vettel
    2) Button
    3) Alonso
    4) Sutil
    5) Alguesuari

    Vettel – Don’t really need to explain
    Button – Always rated him, even in 07/08 but I didn’t think he’d be able to beat Lewis and be this consistent.
    Alonso – Always the 3rd best car, outperformed it every week.
    Sutil – I understand people rating di Resta, but Sutil has been incredible since the first few races, always up there.
    Kovalainen – Surely the most one-sided driver line-up on the grid?

    Honourable mentions to Alguesuari’s 2nd half of the season and I’ve really rated Senna since he’s got the race seat even if points haven’t really shown it. Rosberg close as well, generally solid season with a few quality moments.

    [Reply]


  446.   446. Posted By: Carlo_Carrera
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 3:42 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Sutil
    Hekki
    Perez

    [Reply]


  447.   447. Posted By: Joe Martin
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 3:45 pm 

    1. Jenson Button
    2. Fernando Alonso
    3. Sebastian Vettel
    4. Michael Schumacher
    5. Sergio Perez

    [Reply]


  448.   448. Posted By: Charlie
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 3:52 pm 

    Kimi Raikkonen

    [Reply]


  449.   449. Posted By: Simon
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 4:13 pm 

    1. Vettel – Class of the field, cut out the errors of previous seasons, almost unbeatable, destroyed very fast team mate.
    2. Button – Probably his best season, out-classed, out-raced and out-strategized his team mate, was likely one of the reasons for Hamilton’s difficult season too, never gave up as attested too by brilliant Canada win, keeps getting better and better.
    3. Alonso – Often brilliant in very mediocre Ferrari, destroyed team-mate, tough to split him and Button, still probably the best on the grid if he can get in a decent car again.
    4. Rosberg – Although I have my doubts about his ultimate pace and potential there is no denying he has a solid season, beat his illustrious team mate more often than not and got the best out of the car available too him.
    5. Kovalainen – Outperformed a disappointing car, totally out-classed his team mate, kept his head up in the futile hunt for points, and really deserves another shot in a decent car.

    [Reply]


  450.   450. Posted By: Kash
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 4:17 pm 

    button
    alonso
    vettel
    webber
    hamilton

    [Reply]


  451.   451. Posted By: Vivekanandan S
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 4:23 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel – A wonderful display of how to optimise the package available at your disposal. Hard to think beyond Vettel for the No.1 A quick glance at what Webber’s results for the season make the choice even easier. Webber’s only win was due to piece of bad luck for Vettel. That redbull managed only four 1-2 results all year, underlines Webber’s lack of achievements this year. His worst result (excluding DNF) was fourth at his home race and that can surely be forgiven. As far as I can remember, none of his wins were inherited. Monza was a highlight and also indicated Vettel’s technical acumen at getting a car set up differently than others and making it work. Monza had seen pathetic results for Red Bull till this year.

    2. Fernando Alonso – Ahead of Button due to 2 facts. The Italia 150 generally was the third best car on the grid and was definetely much weaker on the harder tyres. But for the car’s lack of pace on harder tires, Alonso would have had even better results. Alonso therefore deserves the No.2 slot. The Gap between Alonso & Massa puts things in perspective. Alonso lost out very narrowly for the No.2 in standings and this was only due to the car.

    3. Jenson Button – Had Button done this last year (First Year at McLaren), he probably would have been ahead of Alonso. Yet, Button delivered 3 sublime wins. The drive at Canada (last phase of the race) was brilliant. To catch out Vettel at his 2011 form levels and force him into a mistake was pure racing. Suzuka was another mega performance.

    4. Kamui Kobayashi – For entertainment value. Outscored team mate 2:1. Optimised the strategy given to him at most races and maximised his results. You would normally not take your eyes of the TV, if the race director chose to cover Kamui. His drive in Australia (despite the subsequent DSQ) is still in memory, given the early days of the Pirelli tires.

    5.Heikki Kovalainen – Quite a lot can be written about this performances relative to the car he was in. Trulli is vastly experienced and is no slouch. Kovi may have done enough to have a top team look at him for 2013, if he can follow up with another such year. This could be the year that resurrects his career.

    Hamilton misses the cut despite 3 wins, because given the car at his disposal, he should have won at least a couple of more races. He allowed various factors to make this his most under achieveing season since his entry into F1. He may have won only 2 races in 2009 but the 2009 McLaren was much more difficult than the 2011 McLaren. His AbuDhabi win was inherited and it is hard to see Vettel not winning that race if he did not have the wheel problem.

    Rosberg misses the cut (so also does Schumacher) due to the fact that together as a team they have not been able to improve the performances of Mercedes GP.

    Schumacher improved throughout the season and finished the season very strongly and if he is a contender next year, he may be in the top 5.

    Sutil misses the cut due to his inconsistent season. He was strongest only in the final few races when he was clearly rumoured to be driving for a seat in 2012. Some more consistency from him could have seen Force India usurp Lotus Renault’s spot in the final standings.

    [Reply]


  452.   452. Posted By: C-M
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 4:24 pm 

    1 – Vettel
    2 – Di Resta
    3 – Alonso
    4 – Button
    5 – Perez

    [Reply]

    Karnibuzz Reply:

    1. Vettel – Almost faultless all season long.
    2. Kovalainen – wrung that car by the neck.
    3. Alonso – finished further up than expected at most races.
    4. Button – wish he drove all the time like he did in the second part of Canada instead of being trying to be opportunistic all the time.
    5. Sutil – Took a while to get used to the types, but once he did results came in.

    Honorable mention to Perez – did an outstanding job for a first season esp. considering their unorthodox strategies.

    [Reply]


  453.   453. Posted By: Andrew Cumbria
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 4:32 pm 

    1. Vettel, the outstanding driver of the season without question, and WDC. Quali and race almost impossible to beat.

    2. Alonso, out drove the car, regularly beat McLarens and Red Bull’s with the 3rd best car. Truely showed his class.

    3. Jenson Button. Consistent won wet and dry races, and the best race of the season in Canada, should have won in Monaco but Vettel and Alonso allowed to change tyres on red flag (rubbish rule that is). Beat Lewis Hamilton which no team mate has been able to do previously.

    4. Sutil Best of the rest excluding the top 4 teams. Under pressure and delievered in spades. Caught up with Di Resta and beat him in his Rookie season.

    5. Alguersuari. Gave heart and soul, attacked well and made best of Torro Rosso on the circuits it went well at. Needs a seat at a better team, replacement for Mark if Lewis re-signs at McLaren ?

    6. Paul Di-Resta – Best rookie and shows real promise. Given the poor strategies by his team, and made the best if them, drove for the team, and this experience will help him push his team mate next season whoever that is.

    [Reply]


  454.   454. Posted By: David Chubb
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 4:34 pm 

    1. Button
    2. Vettel
    3. Kovalainen
    4. Alguersuari
    5. Di Resta

    Button showed how good he is this year on many occasion and finally won his first dry race for McLaren in Japan
    Kovalainen has raced he mdfield and sometimes beating them on merit
    Alguersuari has stepped up his game and shown the greatness in himself with many a great drive
    V ettel has driven like a driving god. He has been able to outpace everyone virtually all the time only to be pushed at times by Button and Hamilton. His opening lap mastery has ptu many in awe
    Di Resta has on many occasion gone faster than his highly thought of teammate and for a rookie season has looked like a man with a few years under his belt

    [Reply]


  455.   455. Posted By: my tuppence
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 4:40 pm 

    1. Vettel – just nicks the sport for showing the world that he is racer. He just feels the need to flick it on when he wants/needs to.

    2. Alonso – maximized he Ferrari for pretty much the whole year.

    3. Di Resta – impressive rookie year. Gave Sutil a wake up call but PDR has been recently on the short end of split race strategy.

    4. Button – more than just a number 2 with some stonking drives this year but I still wouldn’t put him up their with Hamilton, which is why JB has punished Hamilton for his errors on race day.

    5. Kovalainen – solid, professional job driving a car at the wrong end of the grid and nothing to show for in terms of points. I don’t where he gets the motivation from but its inspiring and is what professional sportsperson strive for week in week out.

    [Reply]


  456.   456. Posted By: Blaize
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 4:44 pm 

    1.Kovalainen
    2.Vettel
    3.Button
    4.Schumacher
    5.Alguersuari

    [Reply]


  457.   457. Posted By: ben manojlovic
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 5:00 pm 

    1st – Vettel
    2nd – Button
    3rd – Alonso
    4th – Sutil
    5th – Di Resta

    [Reply]


  458.   458. Posted By: Chantal Hillarby
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 5:30 pm 

    1. Button
    2. Vettel
    3. Alonso
    4. Di Resta
    5. Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  459.   459. Posted By: Osito
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 5:48 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Button
    4. Rosberg
    5. Di Resta

    [Reply]


  460.   460. Posted By: Geoff
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 5:53 pm 

    Vettle
    Button
    Alonso
    DiResta
    Shumacher

    [Reply]


  461.   461. Posted By: Holly
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 6:05 pm 

    alonso
    vettel
    button
    perez
    sutil

    [Reply]


  462.   462. Posted By: Mitchel
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 6:30 pm 

    1. Kimi Raikkonen
    2. Heikki Kovalainen
    2. Kamui Kobayashi
    3. Jenson Button
    5. Mika Hakkinen
    6. Jean Alesi
    7. Nicola Larini
    8. JJ Lehto
    9. Jacques Villeneuve
    10. Gerhard Berger

    [Reply]

    Rich C Reply:

    lmao

    [Reply]

    ADF Reply:

    I definitely agree with this list

    [Reply]


  463.   463. Posted By: JP
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 7:17 pm 

    1. Vettel. Heart says Jenson, head says F1 is about winning.

    2. Jenson. The most entertaining driver this year, from Monaco on he was incredible to watch.

    3. Alonso. If Ferrari can get their act together he will just win and win and win I think, pure talent, I dont really like him to be honest but I’m really not sure how he got some of his results this season.

    4. Kovalainen. I love this guy even his tweets are cool, I think he could win the Championship one day, if he can get a winning car and his head right.

    5.Alguersuari. This place could have gone to a few drivers but I chose him because I think TR are pretty harsh on their drivers and he sucked it up and proved a real racer.

    [Reply]


  464.   464. Posted By: Monem
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 7:28 pm 

    1.Vettel
    2.Button
    3.Alonso
    4.Sutil
    5.J.Algersuari

    [Reply]


  465.   465. Posted By: F1Fan4Life
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 8:01 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Button
    4. Algersuari
    5. Perez

    This is my guess for your top five James. My top five has Vettel in second with Alonso a mile ahead. Hopefully next year parity between the lead cars will prove this true.

    [Reply]


  466.   466. Posted By: Vicente
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 8:48 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Di Resta
    Hamilton

    [Reply]


  467.   467. Posted By: Raid Polski
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 8:49 pm 

    1)Rosberg.
    Can somebody remember him making a serious mistake? Quiet guy, speaks no rubbish, beat his teammate nicely. What else can you ask?

    2)Button.
    This year, he was really good. He knows how to race. If he could drive qualifications as quickly as Lewis, he would be first instead of Rosberg.

    3)Alonso.
    Much better than last year, less errors, real spanish quality.

    4)Vettel.
    So much faster than Webber this time.
    Last year he had a very good car too, but crashed too much. When Schuey had lonely races with confortable lead, he used to spice up things with an offroad excursion. Vettel stayed out of trouble in similar situations.

    5)Could be everybody who beat his teammate. But I would pick Alguersuari. Heidfeld was a strong candidate here too.

    [Reply]


  468.   468. Posted By: Stu
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 10:21 pm 

    Decided to consider who made their car and season work, either by out and out race pace or by making the best of strategy (at times bad strategy)
    Vettel was brilliant, Button very smooth, Alonso fought the car to make it work but was overly favoured by his team at all times (perhaps Vettel was too), Sutil great end result, Di Resta great rookie season & very mature driving (some really poor team strategy), nobody in the Renault team impressed, Mercedes were disappointing too, Perez looked good as did Riciardo. Kovaleinen always looked good considering the package he had (it helped that Trulli was awful)
    => My top 5
    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Sutil
    4. Di Resta
    5. Kovaleinen

    [Reply]


  469.   469. Posted By: anonymous
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 10:50 pm 

    1. Vettel. Because he destroyed his team mate, who is anything but slow.
    2. Alonso. Made Massa look old and took the Ferrari to its very limit almost every race.
    3. Kovalainen, for dominating Trulli, who is known to be an utterly fast driver and a sensational qualifier and who made little mistakes throughout the season.
    4. Sutil. Despite having a bad start to the season and under heavy pressure by DiResta, he has turned the table and beat the young Scot hands down in the second half of the season.
    5. Heidfeld for finishing eleventh in the championship, just 3 points behind his team mate, still beating DiResta, despite being humiliated in public by his team-boss, set in flames twice by his engineers, getting fired mid season and having a worse shave than Ross Brawn.

    Why not Button? Close call! Button had had some great races and lucky weather gambles, but had Hamilton not been that over-opportunistic (some might say utterly stupid, seeing phantoms of gaps everywhere), he wouldn’t look as good in comparison. He had been my Nr. 5, had I not given that place to Heidfeld for the coolness factor.

    [Reply]


  470.   470. Posted By: Vivek
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 11:23 pm 

    There have been very good performances by many drivers, but the top five according to me are, not necessarily in any order:

    1. Fernando Alonso (for an awesome showing in a fairly non-competitive car compared to the front runners)

    2. Jenson Button (again an awesome performance at the front, showing good character and temperament and for outperforming Lewis)

    3. Adrian Sutil (the best of the midfield drivers, scored consistently, drove faultless races and finished ahead of the Renault drivers)

    4. Michael Schumacher (had his share of bad luck, but came back almost every time from the back of the grid and had great starts in almost all races)

    5. Heikki Kovaleinen (Beat his teammate comprehensively, extracted the maximum from the car and was always on the cusp of going forward to Q2 in qualifying)

    [Reply]

    Vivek Reply:

    *Kovalainen :)

    [Reply]


  471.   471. Posted By: Dutch Johnny
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 11:31 pm 

    1. Vettel: Couldnt resist this guy. He has been incredible all year long but i would like to see him fight in a slower car.

    2. Alonso: Wasnt a big fan of alonso but im gonna give credit where it due. He just punched above the cars weight all season.

    3. Button: First teammate ho defeated hamilton in a straight battle. I still think that when hamilton get his head sorted out he will be infront of jenson.

    4. Sutil: 9th in the championship although he strarted a little bit slow this year.I thought that sutil was really impressive the second half of the season.

    5. Kovalainen I was thinking about ricciardo but kovi was also mighty this year. I would love to see him in a good car for one time although he had his chance(mclaren)

    Also a honourable mention for my hero schumacher. To still put your reputation at risk and keep going on even though some below the belt critisism(moss calling his 7 titles lucky). Kept going and had the measure of rosberg in the latter races of the seasons.

    Btw james i read your great book about schumi,are you gonna do another one about his ‘second career’? would be an instant buy!

    [Reply]


  472.   472. Posted By: Dutch Johnny
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 11:33 pm 

    And i apologize for the spelling mistakes, English isnt my first language.

    [Reply]

    Dave Aston Reply:

    Your spelling is better than almost everyone on the internet who consider English their first language.

    [Reply]

    Dutch Johnny Reply:

    Thaks man:)

    [Reply]


  473.   473. Posted By: Matt
        Date: December 2nd, 2011 @ 11:56 pm 

    1.Sebastian Vettel
    2.Jenson Button
    3. Fernando Alonso
    4.Heikki Kovalainen
    5. Adrian Sutil

    [Reply]


  474.   474. Posted By: Chris
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 1:26 am 

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Button
    Kovalinen
    Sutil

    [Reply]


  475.   475. Posted By: nustang70
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 1:35 am 

    No particular order:

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Hamilton
    Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  476.   476. Posted By: HaaiCorner
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 2:14 am 

    Vettel – discovered a winning formula (take pole in quali, then get far enough ahead in the first 2 laps to get out of DRS range in the race and then manage the gap). He implemented this formula very well.

    Alonso – outdrove his machinery at every race resulting in a fine win at Silverstone.

    Button – got better as the year went on and pressed home his advantage over Hamilton

    Kovalainen – outshone his teammate and even made Q2 on the odd occasion.

    Di Resta – very impressive rookie year mixing it with Mercedes and Torro Rosso

    [Reply]


  477.   477. Posted By: Peter
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 2:52 am 

    My Top 5 Drivers of the year.

    Start off by saying I’m Aussie.

    1. Vettel: not a fan of his at all, but can’t deny how good he was all year, however I look forward to 2012, with more pressure from other teams/drivers and Webber of course. As I question his race-craft still, under a bit of pressure and it all goes haywire, i.e. Canada, however he did redeem himself in Brazil to even finish, however hard he seem to try not to finish in the early stages.

    2. Button: easily the 2nd best driver of the year, out driving his team mate, which the team is more centered around, and we all saw the pressures he put Hamilton in. He admitted as much himself.

    3. Alonso: another year where he just does things with the Ferrari no-one else can, (off topic a bit) Stoner on a Ducati in MotoGP, everyone said Rossi was great but, he wasn’t so great on the Ducati, when Stoner was brilliant.

    4. Webber: I’m putting on my blinders for this one, without know the facts, JA maybe you can do some on this. But he much of past the most cars ON TRACK all year. he lost the more off the start too, that’s well documented, but some of the battles he had all year, especially with Alonso. Can’t get over that pass at Spa. WOW! respect from both drivers to make that happen and not crash out. As someone here said already, I agree driver of the year, Webber in China.

    5. Rosberg: Another year showing one of the greats how its meant to be done at Mercedes. Solid drives all year, no results but not driver issues more car performance issues.

    my top 5 for 2012

    1. Webber, World Champion.
    2. Kimi!!!!! (love that his coming back FINALLY! F1 has missed him)
    3. Ricciardo, at Caterham/Williams proving himself, did say I was an Aussie!
    4. Button
    5. Alonso.

    [Reply]

    Andrew Reply:

    Awesome list…. Oh yeah I’m an Aussie as well.
    C’mon Ricciardo.

    [Reply]


  478.   478. Posted By: Methusalem
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 6:10 am 

    I haven’t got the best drivers in 2011, rather, the worst ones:

    1. Senna
    2. Massa
    3. Button
    4. Trulli
    5. Maldonado

    [Reply]

    ZanteX Reply:

    Button?

    [Reply]


  479.   479. Posted By: Randy Torres
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 6:40 am 

    1) Button
    2) Vettel
    3) Alonso
    4) Kovalainen
    5) Maldonado

    [Reply]


  480.   480. Posted By: Gaspar
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 7:56 am 

    1. Fernando Alonso
    2. Heikki Kovalainen
    3. Sebastian Vettel
    4. Timo Glock
    5. Nico Rosberg

    The first criteria was the gap between they teammates. It’s not easy to win races with a dodgy car , but to be half a second faster then your teammate that’s something. To be in 20th position instead of 22 , that’s also remarkable , but nobody cares .

    [Reply]


  481.   481. Posted By: James M Godby
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 9:27 am 

    1. Jenson Button

    2. Sebastian Vettel

    3. Fernando Alonso

    4. Adrian Sutil

    5. Lewis Hamilton

    [Reply]


  482.   482. Posted By: William McCone
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 12:22 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Kovalainen
    4. Button
    5. Ricciardo

    [Reply]


  483.   483. Posted By: wendy
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 12:42 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  484.   484. Posted By: F1Racer
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 1:03 pm 

    1. Vettel: Senna like qualifying speed and Schumacher like domination race after race. As Horner said this guy is in the form of his life. Car’s pace certainly helped but ask webber who finished third.

    2. Alonso: Charging spanish bull who never gives up and has extracted every juice that ferrari had to offer. A sniff is all he needs, he will take the challenge to cliffhanger.

    3. Button: The best drive i have seen from him and has gained a lot of respect among the paddock and f1 fans in general. Showed some spectacular drives and really had a measure of hamilton who seemed to be occupied with domestic issues.

    4. Schumacher: Give the 42 yr old man the credit putting his reputation on the line and sticking to it. He showed reminiscence of his old self in some races. Canada, Spa and Monza were exceptional on how far he took that lumpy mercedes up, not to mention his electrifying starts. If he could solve his qualifying pace and mercedes come up with a better car, watch out for Schumacher, as alonso said. Rosberg is solid and dependable to bring home the points, but yet to see anything different from him to claim he can exceptional.

    5. Kovalainen: Took the lotus car and drove the car to its limits. Lotus 10th place credit fully goes to this man.

    [Reply]


  485.   485. Posted By: jjpm
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 1:21 pm 

    1. Vettel
    Has to be the number one!, mistake free season, superb in qualification, imperial during races.
    2. Button
    Managed to keep Hamilton behind him in most of the season and Webber’s Red Bull and best use of his experience all season long.
    3. Schumacher
    While a majority of onlookers was still focused on qualif feud with Rosberg, he has managed to use strategy as the weapon to demonstrate that with the new parameters (tyres, KERS, DRS) the flaw was not with him but with the car.
    4. Kovalainen
    A brilliant season with one of the slowest car,
    dominating his team mate in all compartment
    5. Sutil
    Definitively the best of the midpack, kept his young team mate behind him regularly.

    [Reply]


  486.   486. Posted By: Raj Roopra
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 1:33 pm 

    1) Vettel – Dominated the entire field, especially his team mate
    2) Button – Great season, some great drives. Canda was the race of the season
    3) Alonso – Out drove the car as all great drivers do. Cracking starts as well
    4) Algersuari – Some great drives from the young Spaniard through the field.
    5) Sutil – Best of the midfield

    [Reply]


  487.   487. Posted By: Thynaks
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 1:44 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Perez
    Alguersuari

    [Reply]


  488.   488. Posted By: yamraaj
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 2:44 pm 

    1. sebastien vettel (for utter domination over everyone)

    2. jenson button (for giving lewis headache all season)

    3. fernano alonso (for driving the wheel off that ferrari and destroyin his team mates confidence)

    4. nico rosberg (for dragging that mercedes car evrytime to a good result everytime)

    5. adrian sutil (for simply the best of the rest, had difficulties at the beginning but came back 10 times stronger)

    honerably mentions – algesuari, buemi, kobayashi and kovalainen…. they had some very good but werent consistent enough…

    [Reply]


  489.   489. Posted By: Amit
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 2:52 pm 

    1. Button (managed to make Mclaren his own this year – which is no easy feat, and in my opinion more impressive than Vettel destroying the field).
    2. Vettel (what can you say?).
    3. Di Resta (Sutil’s a good driver, although he wasn’t fantastic last year, but Di Resta had him beat on more than one occassion).
    4. Alonso (outperformed a poor Ferrari car).
    5. Liuzzi (had the legs on the Virgin cars).

    [Reply]


  490.   490. Posted By: noahracer
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 3:17 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Hamilton
    Schumacher

    [Reply]


  491.   491. Posted By: Roberto
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 3:22 pm 

    Vettel – You can have the best car, but you have to know how to exploit it, he did it to perfection and handle his races like the champion he is.

    Button – One of the smoothests drivers in the field, without making much noise he positioned himself in front of Hamilton, he really knows to nurse the tires.

    Perez – A rookie year for him, maximizing the strategies Sauber applied in every race, very consistant, he´s a great driver for the future.

    Alguersari – He almost doubled the points of Buemi, great races and solid performances, he deserved to be next year

    Alonso – He is one of the best drivers of all time, he drove the ferrari at 120%, he did life difficult to the other drivers, driving some kind of a dog.

    [Reply]


  492.   492. Posted By: Neil
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 3:23 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Kovalainen
    5. DiResta

    [Reply]


  493.   493. Posted By: Till
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 4:06 pm 

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Button
    Hamilton
    Sutil

    [Reply]


  494.   494. Posted By: mikey twigge
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 4:10 pm 

    1 Sebastian vettel
    2 Heikki Kovelinen
    3 Jenson Button
    4 jaime Algusuari
    5 Fernando Alonso

    [Reply]


  495.   495. Posted By: Nick4
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 4:28 pm 

    My choices:
    Vettel – even though he had the best car by far, he still did an excellent job in his back to back championship.
    Alonso – for consistently dragging performance out of a very average car and challenging the front runners.
    Button – for being such a professional driver and delivering what every team wants, race wins mixed with some outstanding judgement and a great attitude.
    De Resta – a great performance for a rookie driver.
    Kovalainen – consistently outpacing his team mate and delivering the best that he could out of his Lotus.
    Thanks James, for your outstanding journalism and a great blog. I have always loved F1 and worry about the direction the sport is taking. At least with your blog and with your input we as fans have some way of expressing our concerns, or showing our appreciation for great drives and races.

    [Reply]

    James Allen Reply:

    Thanks for that

    [Reply]


  496.   496. Posted By: Mitch Lewis
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 4:42 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  497.   497. Posted By: Juan Carlos Fernández Álvarez
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 5:20 pm 

    A pilot that wasted five pole positions (China, Canada, Hungary, Japan, Abu Dhabi) with the best car, the best pilot of the year? Guauuuuuuuuuuuuuu…….

    1- Button
    2- Alonso
    3- Kovalainen
    4- Rosberg
    5- Alguersuari

    [Reply]


  498.   498. Posted By: Gavin
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 6:37 pm 

    Vettel – Only a handful of mistakes all year

    Button – Consistent, handled pressure well, motivated

    Alonso – Destroyed Massa, made an average car look quick.

    Kovalainen – improved massively this year as his confidence has grown.

    Sutil – disappointing start to the season but got stronger towards the end,

    [Reply]


  499.   499. Posted By: Scott Elkington
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 6:55 pm 

    1. Vettel – Even though like Martin Whitmarsh I was forced to very quickly reach for the mute button after most races this year, but you can not doubt the job the guy has done this year. Simply hit the ground running at 200mph and blown his team mate away for 95% of the season.

    2. Button – Easily his best season (to date!) Easily the most consistent driver apart from Vettel, won 3 races, could’ve won more.. and finished on the podium 12 times. Also did what virtually no-one though he could ever do and that’s beat Hamilton! He may not quite have had the 1 lap pace of Hamilton (although he’s got better and better as the season went on) but he’s proved himself to be a far better racer and complete driver than most people ever realised, causing most of them to swallow there words!

    3. Alonso – Some incredible performances, to get the slower Ferrari onto the podium many time, most of which was ourely down to him.

    4. Kovalainen – Showed how much of a better driver he is compared to 3 or 4 years ago. Completely obliterated Trulli and easily outperformed the car, unlucky not to have been able to score Team Lotus’s first points this year. Definitely deserves a faster car, fingers crossed for next year.

    5. Algursuari – Got better and better as the year went on, drove some incredible races from the back of the field, and made quite a few visits into Q3.

    [Reply]


  500.   500. Posted By: dbfinch
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 7:22 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel – Even if he had the best car on the grid, all that he achieved with it (especially compared to Webber’s performance) make it difficult to go with anybody else.

    2. Jenson Button – The best season of his career, which already includes a World Championship year. The only driver who regularly appeared to be able to cope with Vettel. His performances in qualifying give Seb the edge, though.

    3. Heikki Kovalainen – Hard to argue he could’ve done anything more with his car than what he did. Sure, Jarno had the issues with power steering, but Heikki’s performances put him (and the rest of the ‘new’ teams) in the shade.

    4. Fernando Alonso – Still bringing that extra six tenths to the grid. Took the third fastest car on the grid to within a point of beating Mark Webber.

    5. Adrian Sutil – Outside of the four fastest teams, I’d say only Heikki did a better job than he did over the course of the season. At the very least, his performances must’ve made Force India reconsider (allegedly) dropping him for 2012.

    [Reply]


  501.   501. Posted By: Stephen Singh
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 7:38 pm 

    Difficult to call it between Alonso and Vettel…I think Alonso had a car which he massively outperformed for the majority of the season. It really had no right to even be competing with the Red Bulls and the McLarens yet he was finishing ahead of them very often. To give an idea of it, you can see in Brazil that when Fernando put on the hard tyres the car just didn’t have the downforce to generate the heat in the tyres the way all the other teams can and was reeled in easily by Button – that’s the kind of downforce disadvantage the Ferrari has had this season yet he’s still keeping the car at the front and on the podium. Which is why I think he was the top driver this year.

    1) Fernando Alonso
    2) Sebastian Vettel
    3) Adrian Sutil
    4) Jenson Button
    5) Lewis Hamilton

    [Reply]


  502.   502. Posted By: Aman
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 8:12 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel (Improved so much from last year, and dominated the season. It is the fact that he dominated his team-mate – who was so close on pace last year, that makes me thing this guy has really stepped up).

    2. Jenson Button (Has become McLaren’s no.1. I think he has driven better this year than in his WDC winning year. His win in Montreal was incredible – but I rate his win in Suzuka as the best, beating Vettel and Alonso in a straight fight on a real drivers circuit).

    3. Fernando Alonso (To achieve as many podiums as he did in a car that was really only good enough for top 6 most of the year is impressive).

    4. Michael Schumacher (Much improved from last year – ok he was beaten by Nico on points and in quail but Michael was the one who was more likely to steal a result better than what the car was worthy of – exciting starts and overtaking – his race pace and craft was excellent. Room for improvement in qualifying).

    5. Heikki Kovalainen (outclassed Trulli in qualifying and great starts/race pace often meant he troubled some of the mid-fielders – when the car really had no right to be there).

    [Reply]


  503.   503. Posted By: Nick
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 8:33 pm 

    1. Vettel – great job done. Even with a good car but the job needs to be done anyway, just see at Webber who didn’t deliver …
    2. Button – who knew that he would outperform Hamilton this year ? I thought myself that he just couldn’t do that , no way. I changed my mind now about him, he is an excellent driver !
    3. Alonso – I am not his fan but I like him as a driver! He could deliver wheneven and on whatever car !
    4. Schumacher – yes, he showed that he still is one of the best, even in 42. Even he needed more time for adaptation. He anwered to his haters just deliver the maximum he could do in the second half of the season.
    5. Hard to pick up the last one – either Sutil or Kobayashi; But let’s Kamui be – very good start of the season, a bit struggled at mid, and good back on pace at the end

    [Reply]


  504.   504. Posted By: Richard Rollason
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 9:10 pm 

    1. Alonso – has consistently outperformed his steed,to a level I don’t think we’ve seen since Senna in ’93, has just quietly got on with it & not moaned once ( Lewis take note ) & has shown why the team adore him & those in the know regard him as the man.
    2. Vettel – close second to Alonso – has the lot, including one of the most dominant cars EVER…
    3. Button – has kept calm & carried on, pure class,’nuff said!
    4. Rosberg – has had a somewhat resurgent MSC to contend with & has still come out on top – well done youth!
    5. Di Resta – excellent first season & very grounded character,very refreshing!

    [Reply]


  505.   505. Posted By: Nige
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 10:36 pm 

    1.Vettel .. Too good
    2. Button .. Beat Lewis …Canada race best ever
    3. Alonso .. Consistently good despite inconsistent car.
    4.kovalainen.. Out qualified team mate and managed to get uncompetitive car into q2.
    5. Di Resta . Most laps completed and best rookie.

    [Reply]


  506.   506. Posted By: lecho
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 11:19 pm 

    Well, here’s my top five, not very surprising though :)

    1. Sebastian Vettel. Although some may say that he hasn’t yet proved as a racer, he showed that he can be a winner. Taking the best machinery and using it is also a skill, something not all drivers are capable of. Also, extremely efficient in qualifying. To be honest, I haven’t seen such a driver since 1994.

    2. Jenson Button. I was always a keen admirer of his strategy and tyre management skills, but this year he has also shown two things many thought he lacks. One is extreme pressure handling when things go bad – something he missed in his championship year. The second is raw speed, more, it was a wise speed. He never tried to go over the limit (which made this year so poor for Hamilton), but always stayed on it. He was more a champion this season than in 2009.

    3. Heikki Kovalainen. Haven’t gathered half the attention as the frontrunners, still one of the most consistent drivers out there. Week by week he was outperforming his car, something rarely seen in F1. It seemed like downgrading from McLaren to Lotus could be the end of his career, but I think it can be the real beginning of it.

    4. Michael Schumacher. Rosberg’s fans may say that he was still beaten by Nico in the standings, but there were few races this season in which Schu had shown his true potential, his “eye of the tiger” remembered from Ferrari times. Given Vettel’s machinery he would still swept the title in mid June.

    5. Fernando Alonso. Not a big fan of him, I personally think that he’s one of the most overrated drivers on the grid. But he is dedicated to Ferrari and dedicated to success. Differently than many other drivers he was always giving not 100, but 130% and earn every dollar of his wage.

    [Reply]


  507.   507. Posted By: Adrian Setterfield
        Date: December 3rd, 2011 @ 11:37 pm 

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

    Vettel dominated the season taking great advantage of the off throttle blown diffuser engine modes in qualifying. Button showed his true class by performing consistently at a very high level. Alonso is the wisest of the fastest – he knows when to push and when to relent, always securing the best possible result. Rosberg’s qualifying was stellar and maybe even outperformed his car which made his raceday performances appear less than perfect. Sutil was fast and consistent, especially in the second half of the season.

    I’d love to have DiResta (best rookie), Webber (best recovery drives), Kobayashi (most inspiring) and Lewis (best natural talent).

    I’ll buy your book anyway James – as you said, they are a great momento. Thanks James, keep up the good work and we’ll all keep reading it!

    [Reply]


  508.   508. Posted By: Nikola Runev
        Date: December 4th, 2011 @ 1:45 am 

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

    [Reply]


  509.   509. Posted By: WoZ
        Date: December 4th, 2011 @ 5:52 am 

    Not an easy year to pick a standout as so many drivers did well in different circumstances, but I’ve based my judgement on the on-track performance IMHO :)

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

    Vettel may have broke all the records, but he easily had the best car and rarely had others around him. Jensons drive and pressure in Canada was enough for me to think he was the ‘best of the best’ this season. As an Aussie it’s sad not to see Mark up there this year. Thanks!

    [Reply]


  510.   510. Posted By: ADF
        Date: December 4th, 2011 @ 9:10 am 

    Disclaimer: Vettel does not make my list for various reasons. For two consecutive seasons, the team have subtly stated that they designed and optimised the car to suit Sebastian. He is also the favoured driver in the team, and the team only recently favoured Mark was because they are smart enough to realise the damage to their already fragile reputation if they kept supporting Sebastian.

    1) Fernando Alonso:
    “I give up!”
    Very charismatic driver. That was one of the best calls in 2011, reminiscent of the mind games Senna and Prost used to play. He makes mistakes and underperforms at times ,because he is pushing to the limit, and that makes him exciting. He also helped pushed development to at least increase their chances of podium finishes. Has respect for everyone else on the grid: “Hamilton can win in a shit car” *shakes Seb’s hand in the Japan post race conference* *gives Webber just enough room for THAT pass at Spa (a way of saying ‘thank you’ for that lift after the German GP)

    2) Mark Webber
    Too many reliability problems, struggled with the KERS DRS and tyres (I hate these new tyres) yet he has only retired from one race all season, and finished every other race in the Top 5. Why? He has done something Seb has yet to genuinely prove: show that, no matter what’s been thrown at you, you can still salvage something respectable out of it. Seb’s pass on Alonso is down to Seb’s motivation to catch Fernando, and inevitably, you end up in his slipstream sooner or later, and you will pass him. Simple.
    Mark’s drives and recoveries are the result of poor starts (caused by technical problems mostly) yet they have been awesome. Spa at Eau Rouge, China from 18th. Oh and if the Golden Boy’s so good, why has Webber taken 3 poles from him this year?

    3) Michael Schumacher
    Monza battle, Canadian recovery…He’s changed. He is so modest nowadays. His boss admitted the car was shit! Yet Mikey stayed calm and put some of the causes of the under-performance down to himself. Wow. He is potential Champion material (Sarcasm intended there…)
    No seriously, I think this is great for him and the sport.

    4) The Sauber boys
    Kamui’s efforts have been neutralised by DRS and the tyres, which is why I hate the tyres. But both he and Sergio (by far, IMO, the best rookie) are impressively consistent and both remind me of Alain Prost in their intellectual and well-calculated driving styles….and the way they always perform better under race conditions as well as their ability to manage the tyres. Well done lads!

    5) Rubens Barrichello
    He deserves a mention for fighting on, despite a crap car and the uncertainty over his future.

    As you can see, it is quite an unexpected list, but it consists mostly of the grid’s feistier and more entertaining drivers. Lewis is the biggest omission though, and he misses it because he dumped his dad as manager; the worse thing anyone can do is to neglect their parents.

    Hoping 2012 comes down to a 9 way fight for the title:
    RBR,McLaren,Ferrari,Michael Schumacher and Kimi Raikkonen!

    [Reply]


  511.   511. Posted By: Andrew
        Date: December 4th, 2011 @ 11:23 am 

    1 – Vettel: Was in the best car but utilised his opportunity to the max, 15 poles (breaking Nige’s 20 year record) and 11 wins which was more than the rest of the field combined. Only real error was mistake in Canada.

    2: JB: 3 wins and first teammate to beat Hamilton in his F1 career. Took it up to Vettel in the second half of the season.

    3: Again punching about his weight as the Ferrari was the third fastest car this season. Only the one win, but only finsihed one point behind Webber who was in the best car and beat Hamilton.

    4: Sutil: Best performing driver outside the Big 4 teams. Losing his seat probably motivated him to do better.

    5: Rosberg: Again another solid year with consistent points scoring. Beat Schumi for the second year in a row.

    Honourable mentions: Hekki: 13th in Italy secured the cash for Caterham next year.

    [Reply]


  512.   512. Posted By: Jasdip
        Date: December 4th, 2011 @ 12:03 pm 

    Love the way every one is churning out their lists! Here is my top 5:

    1) Vettel: The world saw his GOD mode.

    2) Button: Should author “McLaren: Veni, vidi, vici”

    3) Sutil: This list would be so incomplete without this best of the rest crusader!Sutil & FI have become so synonymous over the years.

    4) Hamilton: The energizer bunny of F1!Always on the limits & never gives up!

    5) Di Resta: Best rookie on the block for the year. Gave his many years experienced partner run for his money (& may be seat).

    [Reply]


  513.   513. Posted By: Vannila
        Date: December 4th, 2011 @ 1:06 pm 

    1) Vettel
    2) Alonso
    3) Button
    4) Sutil
    5) Rosberg

    [Reply]


  514.   514. Posted By: Dan
        Date: December 4th, 2011 @ 1:45 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  515.   515. Posted By: Chris Severin
        Date: December 4th, 2011 @ 2:22 pm 

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Button
    Alguesuari
    Sutil

    [Reply]


  516.   516. Posted By: ed24f1
        Date: December 4th, 2011 @ 2:24 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    (daylight)
    Sutil
    Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  517.   517. Posted By: Anupam
        Date: December 4th, 2011 @ 2:27 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Sutil
    5. Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  518.   518. Posted By: tmzxaar
        Date: December 4th, 2011 @ 2:50 pm 

    Fernando Alonso
    Nico Rosberg
    Sebastian Vettel
    Jenson Button
    Adrian Sutil

    [Reply]


  519.   519. Posted By: Andy c
        Date: December 4th, 2011 @ 2:55 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Hamilton
    Algersuari

    [Reply]


  520.   520. Posted By: don knowles
        Date: December 4th, 2011 @ 7:41 pm 

    Alonso. No other driver exceeded expectations and crushed his team mate as much.

    Button. Beat Hamilton more than expected but again, Hamilton contributed by having his own melt downs. Beat Vettel at Canada–enough justification to be ahead of him.

    Vettel. Had a spectacular year but had best car and his team mate was clearly off form, eg, starts and qualifying failures.

    DiResta. Best rookie, gave senior team member tough competition.

    Rosberg. Is continuing to beat Schuey enough? Maybe.

    Can’t support Kovi–have seen him in first class car and he did not bring home the bacon.

    [Reply]


  521.   521. Posted By: TvanR
        Date: December 4th, 2011 @ 8:18 pm 

    1.Alonso
    2.Jenson Button
    3.Sebastian Vettel
    4.Nico Rosberg
    5.Adrian Sutil

    [Reply]


  522.   522. Posted By: Eerik
        Date: December 4th, 2011 @ 8:21 pm 

    1. Vettel – nothing to say here really, he did have the best car but that’s not his “fault”. unlike Webber managed to use it’s full potential and was virtually infallible throughout the season.
    2. Alonso – probably the most complete driver on the grid right now, finished on the podium on a mystifying number of times with a car that objectively didn’t belong there.
    3. Button – not the fastest driver on the grid by far but maybe the smartest one (bar Alonso perhaps). Pulled off some sublime overtakes and generally managed to drive without crashing into every second car he overtook unlike his more talented but far too volatile teammate. A true world champion, in my book at least.
    4. Kovalainen – was able to mix it up with the faster cars on a number of occasions, great starts (mostly) and annihilated his teammate.
    5. DiResta – rookie of the year, did not have the best end of the season but drove some impressive races where he combined a bold strategy with a very mature drive to the finish.

    [Reply]


  523.   523. Posted By: Seth
        Date: December 4th, 2011 @ 8:52 pm 

    Vettel – Unbelivably consistent, if he performed at Webber’s level in the same case the championship would have been very close amongst the top guys until the end

    Button – Fantastic in tricky conditions + went from strength to strength throughout the season, cemented his status as a top driver

    Paul di Resta – Exellent performance from a rookie, sensible head on his shoulders already

    Petrov – good results for an under-rated driver in a very average Renault

    Kovalainen – Performed exactly as the team formely known as Lotus needed him to do, seems to be much mentally stronger than he was in his Mclaren days

    [Reply]


  524.   524. Posted By: NORFOLKLASS
        Date: December 4th, 2011 @ 9:12 pm 

    ALONSO
    BUTTON
    VETTEL
    KOVALAINEN
    ROSBERG

    [Reply]


  525.   525. Posted By: Iain
        Date: December 4th, 2011 @ 11:11 pm 

    1. Vettel – Rose to new heights as he became Dual World Champion, setting new standards and gaining many accolades along the way

    2. Button – Outshone his team mate and created his own nest at McLaren whilst achieving solid results in a variety of conditions

    3. Alonso – Made his Ferrari appear to be better than it actually was – mid season Alonso was quoted at saying that he was driving better than when he won his two world titles – this I agree with

    4. Rosberg – Again outshone his team mate and even led a few races during the year. Demonstrated abilities that had him speculated to join Ferrari, although this chatter dissapeared once he resigned with the Silver Arrows

    5. Di Resta – A solid year and showed plenty of promise in his debut season. One to watch

    [Reply]


  526.   526. Posted By: John H.
        Date: December 5th, 2011 @ 1:30 am 

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

    [Reply]


  527.   527. Posted By: Sammy
        Date: December 5th, 2011 @ 1:38 am 

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Button
    Sutil
    Alguersuari

    [Reply]


  528.   528. Posted By: Umais
        Date: December 5th, 2011 @ 2:35 am 

    1) Vettel
    2) Button
    3) Alonso
    4) Heikki
    5) Sutil

    [Reply]


  529.   529. Posted By: dhivak
        Date: December 5th, 2011 @ 2:41 am 

    1.button
    2.rosberg
    3.alonso
    4.vettel
    5.sutil

    [Reply]


  530.   530. Posted By: aardvark
        Date: December 5th, 2011 @ 3:43 am 

    Vettel (has to be, sublime)
    Button (patient, intelligent)
    Alonso (outdrove the car)
    Webber (some great drives, pity about quali)
    Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  531.   531. Posted By: Andrew
        Date: December 5th, 2011 @ 6:08 am 

    Vettel
    Ricciardo
    Webber
    Button
    Sutil

    [Reply]


  532.   532. Posted By: fetel
        Date: December 5th, 2011 @ 6:45 am 

    Vettel
    Button
    Schumacher
    Sutil
    Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  533.   533. Posted By: Abnash S
        Date: December 5th, 2011 @ 7:15 am 

    1-Vettel-Consistent, fast, calm
    2-Button-Consistent, beat Lewis, never ambitious just calmly collecting points
    3-Alonso-Outdrove car and Massa,
    4-Kovalainen-outdrove car, got it into q2 sometimes and nearly always beat teammate
    5-Sutil-some stuniing drives germany and brazil but was that great and was sometimes lacking

    [Reply]


  534.   534. Posted By: lmp8888
        Date: December 5th, 2011 @ 11:14 am 

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Button
    4. Sutil
    5. Perez

    [Reply]


  535.   535. Posted By: Spencer
        Date: December 5th, 2011 @ 12:32 pm 

    1. Di Resta
    2. Kovalainen
    3. Button
    4. Alonso
    5. Alguersuari

    [Reply]


  536.   536. Posted By: Alex
        Date: December 5th, 2011 @ 1:25 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Schumacher
    3, Rosberg
    4. Sutil
    5. Heidfeld

    [Reply]


  537.   537. Posted By: Michael C
        Date: December 5th, 2011 @ 2:48 pm 

    goodness the lengths we will go to for a free book!

    1 Vettel
    2 Alonso
    3 Button
    4 Rosberg
    5 D’Ambrosio

    [Reply]


  538.   538. Posted By: Chapor
        Date: December 5th, 2011 @ 3:33 pm 

    1. Vettel, he did the job at hand and wrapped the championship up way ahead of time, can’t fault him on anything this season.

    2. Button, he kept his cool, showed some impressive race craft and beat Hamilton which is no small feat in itself.

    3. Alonso, outdrove his machinery and it was a beautiful to see him dragging that Ferrari round the track by the scruff of his neck way faster than it should have been. Also, Spa, him vs Webber = awesome racing.

    4. Kovaleinen, Put that Lotus in places it had no right to be. He did very well.

    5. This was a tough one, but on the whole I would give it to Alguersuari. He showed tremendous maturity for his age after being dumped into the deep end in 2009. Truly a racer worth his place in F1.

    [Reply]


  539.   539. Posted By: Dan Paul T.
        Date: December 5th, 2011 @ 4:52 pm 

    1 Vettel

    2 Button

    3 Rossberg

    4 DiResta

    5 Perez

    [Reply]


  540.   540. Posted By: Charlie Lawson
        Date: December 5th, 2011 @ 5:44 pm 

    Vettel
    Button
    Di Resta
    Alonso
    Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  541.   541. Posted By: Grant
        Date: December 5th, 2011 @ 7:21 pm 

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Button
    Sutil
    Schumacher

    Hard year, not many stunning performances. They all speak for themselves but I feel like I’ll have to defend my choice in Schumacher. Really he is a frustrated guy in a car that hasn’t got the speed. Though he hasn’t got the points of Rosberg, he’s shown that he can overtake and race better than him. Schumacher hasn’t change and he has had 5 retirements and lots of wings coming off reducing his results. Really that is down to him putting that car at risk to get the results as it isn’t fast enough.

    [Reply]


  542.   542. Posted By: Jon Wilde
        Date: December 5th, 2011 @ 9:20 pm 

    Sebastian Vettel- Unquestionable
    Jenson Button – Possibly a stronger year than 2009
    Michael Schumacher – Exclude Brazil and look at hit number of 1st lap overtakes
    Jaime Alguersuari- Not a fan of the man, but his race craft in 2011 has been very impressive. Difficult to pick between him or Adrian Sutil
    Heikki Kovalainen- Performs beyond the car every race, seems to be shaping the green team around him, hopefully he will get the car he deserves in 2012 with a teammate who can challenge him

    Why not Ferrari? one win in a season, in the race where they changed the rules

    [Reply]


  543.   543. Posted By: Dick Goodey
        Date: December 6th, 2011 @ 12:19 am 

    There was one outstanding drive this year.
    Webber at Au Rouge. Spa.
    Never mind the other top 4.
    But if you must;
    Vettel
    Button
    Alonso
    Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  544.   544. Posted By: Flavius
        Date: December 6th, 2011 @ 11:42 am 

    Vettel
    Alonso
    Button
    Heidfeld
    Paul Di Resta

    [Reply]


  545.   545. Posted By: @Damien_Marquez (GrandPrixAdvisor)
        Date: December 6th, 2011 @ 9:56 pm 

    1) Vettel
    Head and shoulders above the rest, and his team mate. Champion for the 2nd time in row.

    2) Button
    Managed three superb wins and finished ahead of his team mate thanks to great consistency.

    3) Alonso
    Did not have the car to express his talent, however, Fernando managed to find himself at the front more often than not. Fantastic victory at Silverstone.

    4) Hamilton
    Some great drives and some forgettable ones. Still managed to clinch as many wins as Button. Many pundits qualified Lewis’ season as average by his high standard, however, I am sure he’ll look back at 2011 with more satisfaction in a few months/years.

    5) Webber
    Finding the fifth driver of the year has been tough. I wasn’t going to say Webber initially. I though Sutil, Kovalainen, Di Resta, Alguersuari or even Schumacher all did rather well. I looked at the entire list of drivers to try and find someone who put in the RB7 would have performed better than the Aussie and did not find any.
    After all, his weekend in Brazil was strong and Webber was plagued with reliability issues at the start of the year. Great drives in Malaysia, China, Silverstone and Nurburgring.

    [Reply]


  546.   546. Posted By: Vijay R
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 5:49 am 

    My Rankings:
    1. S Vettel- World Champion, Defended his title so well, even if he did have the best car… to be on the podium on all but 2 races is Schumacher-esque and maybe soon referred as Vettel-esque
    2. J Button- Maybe his best season, deserves a good position given how he has blended himself into a team essentially Lewis’s domain… and will start the next season as No 3 to Lewis No 4
    3. F Alonso- 3rd place is way too low by his standards…2012, be his year?
    4. P DiResta – Rookie of the year, took to F1 so well that had it not been for Lewis in 2007, would have received more rave reviews
    5. H Kovalainen- Deserves a mention for ensuring his team finished in top ten and well, earn valuable $$$ for the team

    [Reply]


  547.   547. Posted By: andrew simmons
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 11:10 am 

    Ill take a risky punt on james’ top 5;

    Alonso
    Button
    Vettel
    Heikki
    Sutil

    And to be honest, i think my top 5 mirror that above.

    [Reply]


  548.   548. Posted By: schorsch
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 1:03 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Kovalainen
    3. Alonso
    4. Glock
    5. Sutil

    [Reply]


  549.   549. Posted By: Alex
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 1:57 pm 

    1: Rosberg-Always has punched above his weight and is by far the most underrated driver on the grid
    2: Button-The most exciting racer of 2011 and the only man aside from Vettel to maintain a level of consistency over the season
    3: Alguersuari-Impressive performances and a year that got him noticed by the big sister team, something Buemi can’t seem to do
    4: Perez-Smartest strategies. So fun and interesting to watch him nurse his tyres for lap after lap after lap after lap!
    5: Senna- Given fleeting chances to prove himself, he made the most of them and dramatically improved his reputation and chances for keeping a drive next year. Seizing opportunities is half the battle in F1

    Alonso, Sutil, Kovalainen and Daniel Ricciardo should all be noted as well, very impressive in their respective roles and always consistent.

    Vettel was left out purely because he made 2011 the most boring season since the devil years 2002 and 2004 and no sport likes a walkover win let alone a walkover season.

    Webber and Hamilton and Massa are also not mentioned because, despite especially Webber and Hamilton being sublime and extremely dedicated all season long, they just couldn’t get their headspace sorted out properly enough to string a season together and amount a challenge to their team mates and in the championship race. Massa’s the same. He is-so unfortunately-a shadow of his former self and it’s a bit sad to see.

    Schumacher has done quite well this year as well and Rubens, it must be said, the guy still has the fire in the belly.

    [Reply]


  550.   550. Posted By: andrew simmons
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 4:39 pm 

    To be honest alex, Alonso and button were evenly matched, even though alonso was in a worse car. Button took more wins and had 2 podiums more, but in the 3rd best car compared to the second best car thats quite a feat, as mclaren were best of the rest but both button and Alonso beat webber and hamilton over a season performance wise.

    And both drivers never finished outside the top 6 unless they retired, infact, webber needs some credit because he also never finished lower than 5th place.

    [Reply]


  551.   551. Posted By: Matthew Huntington
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 7:24 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. DiResta
    5. Perez

    [Reply]


  552.   552. Posted By: Petra
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 7:25 pm 

    Sebastian Vettel
    Jenson Button
    Kamui Kobajashi
    Fernando Alonso
    Sergio Perez

    [Reply]


  553.   553. Posted By: jason grant
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 7:26 pm 

    button

    Vettel
    Di Resta
    Rosberg
    Sutil
    Heidfeld

    [Reply]


  554.   554. Posted By: Damon Smedley
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 7:29 pm 

    Vettel, Alonso, Button, Webber, and Massa were my top 5 drivers for this year.

    [Reply]


  555.   555. Posted By: Deepali
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 7:31 pm 

    My picks for the top 5 of 2011 would be:
    1. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Jenson Button
    3. Fernando Alonso
    4. Michael Schumacher
    5. Paul diResta

    [Reply]


  556.   556. Posted By: Dan
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 7:35 pm 

    1- Vettel: Although I think he has been heavily aided, he has been near perfect all season.

    2- Di Resta: I think has been brilliant in his rookie year and has shown tremendous consistently and been a real team player on lots of different strategies.

    3- Kovalainen: Has been the best of the back runners and has kept his enthusiasm for the sport after basically going backwards in regards of career.

    4- Alonso: Has been very consistant in a poor car and for me is with Hamilton the fastest racing driver on the grid.

    5- Button: Shown incredible consistantcy all year and is always so calm.

    [Reply]


  557.   557. Posted By: Niju-Ichi
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 7:37 pm 

    1. Jenson Button
    2. Sebastian Vettel
    3. Fernando Alonso
    4. Nico Rosberg
    5. Adrian Sutil

    [Reply]


  558.   558. Posted By: OricTosh
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 7:39 pm 

    My top 5

    1)Vettel
    2)Button
    3)DiResta
    4)Hamition
    5)Perez

    [Reply]


  559.   559. Posted By: Paul
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 7:45 pm 

    Sebastian Vettel
    Jenson Button
    Paul Di Resta
    Jaime Alguersuari
    Fernando Alonso

    [Reply]


  560.   560. Posted By: Ayrton Mansell
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 7:47 pm 

    Formula 1 is all about results and this = points.You win points from many many factors comming together. A few examples, a very good car,designer team, driver talent skill & determination passion and a bit of good luck too.
    1.Sebastien Vettel.
    2.Jenson Button
    3.Mark Webber
    4.Fernando Alonso
    5.Lewis Hamilton

    [Reply]


  561.   561. Posted By: Chris Lord
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 7:52 pm 

    1. Seb Vettel (Who Else?)
    2. Jenson Button (The Only One IMO who took the fight to Vettel)
    3. Heikki Kovalinen (Consistently the best of the worst, Hope Caterham up their game in 2012, Kovalinen will surely score them points if we get a mad Canada race)
    4. Paul Di Resta (Solid Rookie Season, newcomers might of thought he was a seasoned Veteran, few mistakes cost him dearly, an example, the crash in Canada)
    5. TRICKY! Sergio Perez (Another Solid Rookie Season, took Kobayashi on, who sadly has lost a little shine, with all the new rules. Made a comeback from that awful shunt in Monaco, bemused Pirelli with his one stop run in Melboune!)

    Mentions:

    Alguersuari (Upped his Game)
    Kobayashi (Not at his best, but still lovely to watch)
    Sutil (Upped his Game, great 10th Place finish overall)
    Alonso (Destroyed Massa)
    Schumacher (Besides Brazil, made up a place at the start)

    [Reply]


  562.   562. Posted By: Ashlene Moran
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 7:52 pm 

    1. Jenson Button
    2. Sebastian Vettel
    3. Paul di Resta
    4. Fernando Alonso
    5. Nico Rosberg

    [Reply]


  563.   563. Posted By: Anestis
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 7:53 pm 

    1. Vettel
    2. Alonso
    3. Button
    4. Di Resta
    5. Schumacher

    [Reply]


  564.   564. Posted By: Darshak Patel
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 8:03 pm 

    Sebastian Vettel
    Jenson Button
    Fernando Alonso
    Paul Diresta
    Bruno Senna

    [Reply]


  565.   565. Posted By: James Berti
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 8:04 pm 

    1. Seb Vettel
    2. Jenson Button
    3. Paul Di Resta (Rookie)
    4. Fernando Alonso
    5. Mark Webber

    [Reply]


  566.   566. Posted By: Peter Horton
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 8:16 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  567.   567. Posted By: Fraser
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 8:36 pm 

    I find driver rankings (including the WDC) irritating, and wonder why we bother. We know there are many factors that contribute to race performance, much of it to do with the team not the driver. Strategy may have played a greater role than in recent years, for example, because of the added factor of tyre degradation – and that strategy will have been decided mainly by the team not the driver. So I don’t believe you can rate drivers objectively (as JA has said we should) on a standalone basis, especially when team orders are in play (we know Alonso has a built-in advantage over Massa, for example, but unless you’re one of the strategists how can you know how big an advantage that is? We can only guess).

    And if we were to rank team performance instead, we know that teams have different resources (like Ferrari’s larger slice of the F1 pie) so it’s practically impossible to compare their real performance either.

    Those who follow F1 for a living must surely know that the WDC and the WCC are a farce, in sporting competitive terms. But titles keep casual fans happy, and most casual fans seem to be men, and we men seem to relate better to numbers than to descriptions – hence the desire to produce rankings. Journalists like them because it creates copy. But, given their experience, they must surely know that you can’t rank drivers or teams in any meaningful way unless you openly declare the criteria by which you’re judging them. And I imagine a lot of the people voting here will be using totally different criteria from JA and each other, and may be ignoring factors that have inhibited drivers from performing well this year.

    So – by saying this is a waste of time, I guess I don’t get the free book? :)

    [Reply]


  568.   568. Posted By: riku
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 8:38 pm 

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

    [Reply]


  569.   569. Posted By: James Hedges
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 8:41 pm 

    Jenson Button
    Sebastian Vettel
    Fernando Alonso
    Paul Di Resta
    Michael Schumacher

    [Reply]


  570.   570. Posted By: KKRockr
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 10:15 pm 

    The list is simple this year:

    1: Vettel
    For total domination this year

    2: Button
    Everyone thought he will be blowing the second fiddle. Everything went right, and an attitude of an winner

    3: Kovalainen
    Never thought I’ll rank a racer in a backmarker team this high. He showed this year how to beat the team-mate. Again, it is also about attitude.

    4: Rosberg
    Pretty solid drive all year and kept Shu behind. Well done!

    5: Buemi
    For most overtakes 2011

    [Reply]


  571.   571. Posted By: Rachel Bottomley
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 10:43 pm 

    1. Sebastian Vettel
    2. Jenson Button
    3. Fernando Alonso
    4. Paul Di Resta
    5. Heikki Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  572.   572. Posted By: Murraytastic
        Date: December 7th, 2011 @ 10:58 pm 

    1) Sebastian Vettel
    2) Jenson Button
    3) Fernando Alonso
    4) Heikki Kovalainen
    5) Jaime Alguersuari

    [Reply]


  573.   573. Posted By: Brian Dooley
        Date: December 8th, 2011 @ 12:04 am 

    1. Vettel – Seriously who else?

    2. Alonso – Destroyed Massa and hauled the car up on the podium far more frequently that it deserved to be there

    3. Button – Beat Hamilton fair and square over a season. Very few, including me ever foresaw that

    4. Kovalainen – 3 Q3 appearances in a car scarcely worthy of a place in the top 20 on top of a demolition job on Trulli render his talent worthy of another stab in a top drive

    5. Sutil – An indifferent start to the season, before which he put the highly rated Di Resta firmly in the number 2 spot as the season wore on and the pace of the Force India improved. Trumping Rosberg’s Mercedes on genuine pace in Brazil was a highlight.

    [Reply]


  574.   574. Posted By: Steve Lydford
        Date: December 8th, 2011 @ 12:14 am 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Alonso
    4. Alguersuari
    5. Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  575.   575. Posted By: olga anagnostaki
        Date: December 8th, 2011 @ 12:30 am 

    Button
    Alonso
    Alguersuari
    Sutil
    Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  576.   576. Posted By: Rob H
        Date: December 8th, 2011 @ 12:36 am 

    Vettel (obviously the best; added maturity and lost no speed), Button (Smart, smooth and fast; got what he could), Alonso (results that looked better than the car deserved), Kovalainen (commitment and smart, quick racing in a tough spot), Rosberg (quietly effective in a second-tier car while in the Schumi vortex) and DiResta (good show for a rookie, against a decent teammate).

    [Reply]


  577.   577. Posted By: tom
        Date: December 8th, 2011 @ 12:36 am 

    1) Vettel
    2) Button
    3) Alonso
    4) Sutil
    5) Kobayashi

    [Reply]


  578.   578. Posted By: Di
        Date: December 8th, 2011 @ 12:37 am 

    1. Vettel – Outclassed the whole grid this season.

    2. Button – Stand out race for me was Canada. Definitely no. 1 driver at McLaren.

    3. Rosberg – Solid season. Out performed his team-mate plenty of times.

    4. Sutil – Another solid season. Good results all round for Force India.

    5. Di Resta – Superb rookie season. Hoping he gets a seat in 2012, he deserves it.

    [Reply]


  579.   579. Posted By: Thomas Surgay
        Date: December 8th, 2011 @ 12:42 am 

    1) Vettel- A dominant performance all year long, yes he had the best equipment but he kept a clear head and extracted the maximum from it time and time again which put more presure on his rivals. He also made Webber look average, not an easy thing to do at all!

    2)Button- Performed admirably this year and asserted himself as the number one driver at McLaren something that not many expected when he announced his move to the Woking based team at the end of 2009. His drives in Canada and Japan particularly were world class.

    3)Alonso- Consistently produced solid results in a car that was no match for the Red Bull or McLaren. The victory at Silverstone was the performance of a double champion.

    4)Kovalainen- Outclassed team mate Trulli at Lotus this year and got the car close to some of the midfield runners by the end of the season. His qualifying and race starts were a joy to behold at times in 2011.

    5)Sutil- Cut out the silly mistakes that have blighted some of his previous campaigns. He responded well to the challenge of having the talented Paul Di Resta as his team mate and by the end of the season was outpacing the works Mercedes pair of Rosberg and Schumacher on a regular basis.

    [Reply]


  580.   580. Posted By: Talking about F1
        Date: December 8th, 2011 @ 12:42 am 

    1 Vettel
    2 Alonso
    3 Button
    4 Hamilton
    5 Webber

    [Reply]


  581.   581. Posted By: Steve
        Date: December 8th, 2011 @ 12:42 am 

    1. Vettel – not my favourite but brilliant in quali and not far from brilliant in the races.

    2. Jenson – really got the most out of the Mclaren

    3. Kovalained – by far the best of the rest, looks like he’s ready to move back to a better team.

    4. Alguersuari – think he even impressed himself!

    5. Alsonso – just look at the difference in positions and performance in races between him and Massa.

    [Reply]


  582.   582. Posted By: Kim Waddle
        Date: December 8th, 2011 @ 12:47 am 

    1. Vettel
    2. Button
    3. Di Resta
    4. Alguersuari
    5. Kovalainen

    [Reply]


  583.   583. Posted By: Sarto Mutiny
        Date: December 8th, 2011 @ 12:57 am 

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

    [Reply]


  584.   584. Posted By: Formule 1
        Date: February 6th, 2013 @ 10:59 am 

    1-vettel
    2-alonso
    3-webber
    4-hamilton
    5-kovlainen

    [Reply]

Leave a Reply





COUNTDOWN TO NEXT RACE
Strategy Report
Innovation and Technology brought to you by TATA Communications
Senna DVD
Download the Chequered Flag Podcast here
MTS
Darren Heath
Sport Right Now