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Korea Grand Prix – Who was your Driver of the Day?
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Posted By: James Allen  |  06 Oct 2013   |  6:00 pm GMT  |  321 comments

Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel closed in on his fourth successive world title with a commanding victory in the Korean Grand Prix.

Lotus’ Kimi Raikkonen produced another trademark drive through the field to finish second ahead of another strong showing from team-mate Romain Grosjean.

Nico Hulkenberg was mighty in the Sauber, punching above his weight to secure his best result of the season in fourth while Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton battled tyre problems to take fifth. But who was your Driver of the Day?

Sebastian Vettel

Won his eighth race of the season to move to the brink of his fourth world title. Led away cleanly from pole and was very disciplined in his first stint as he managed his tyres. Reacted well at both the safety car restarts to ensure Grosjean and then Raikkonen couldn’t get close enough to launch an attack. Controlled the race from then on, setting the fastest lap in the process, to take his fifth victory in six races. Extended his lead over nearest rival Alonso to 77 points with just 125 remaining and could mathematically win the title at the next race in Japan.

Kimi Raikkonen

Recovered from a disappointing qualifying to take his eighth podium of the season. Started from ninth on the grid but made up a place with a pass around the outside of Daniel Ricciardo. Struggled to make more progress, but an early pit stop gave him free air and also saw him gain track position to third when the safety car came out. Passed Grosjean when he made a mistake with a bold move up the inside into Turn One but couldn’t catch Vettel and settled for second.

Romain Grosjean

Lost out during the two safety car periods but still impressed to finish on the podium. Made a brilliant getaway from third to pass Hamilton from second. Maintained a gap to leader Vettel early on while holding a comfortable lead over Hamilton. Two safety car periods meant he was unable to go as deep into the stint as he’d hoped in order to attempt to challenge Vettel. Made a mistake on track which allowed Raikkonen to pass and was unable to fight back immediately as they entered a yellow flag zone. Finished third for his third podium of the year.

Nico Hulkenberg

Delivered his best performance of the season with a mature drive to fourth. Passed Alonso at the start to run fifth and utilised the Sauber’s impressive traction to stay ahead. Slick pit work from the team, combined with some clever defensive driving ensured he maintained track position. Passed Hamilton after the safety car restart to run fourth and then defended the position from Hamilton bravely for nearly 20 laps. Lost the place to Hamilton at Turn One, but immediately passed the Mercedes back down the straight and ultimately finished fourth.

Lewis Hamilton

Looked in contention for a podium before struggling with tyre-wear and battling to fifth. Made a decent getaway, but couldn’t hold off the fast starting Hulkenberg. Showed good pace in the first stint, staying within six seconds of leader Vettel. Struggled in the middle phase of the race, at one point losing up to three seconds a lap with fading tyres. Forced to stay out an extra lap because the team needed to service team-mate Rosberg’s broken front wing. Looked strong in the final stint but though he put consistent pressure on Hulkenberg, couldn’t find a way past and finished fifth.

Click here to vote for your Driver of the Day in Korea

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321 Comments
  1. Pad-Rock says:

    Not even a contest – the Hulk!

    1. David Taylor says:

      Seconded, even though I wanted Lewis to get ahead!

    2. Grant H says:

      Man of the day – fire jeep

      (Because korea is that dull)

      Nah just messing agree the hulk was on form today

      1. Rayz says:

        I think Korea brings some epic racing. The DRS down to turn 3 sets up some great racing into turn 4, so much overtaking strategy on show by top drivers. Turn 4 at Korea is one of the most eventful corners in F1 at the moment. Last year I recall the Hulk passing 2 cars round the outside. Today, Alonso and Hamilton must have been wheel to wheel into T4 at least 3 times. Add to that an amazingly fast mid-sector which is thrilling to watch onboard during quali runs and I think its a great track. Its just a shame it probably wont be on the calendar next year.

        As for DOTD, the HULK no question. In fact, if anybody thinks otherwise, they need to be tested frankly. The Sauber has improved, but its not a Merc and Ferrari beater, and yet, he kept Alonso at bay for the entire race, and Hamilton for at least 15 laps at the end. Superb driving.

      2. Simmo says:

        +1. Korea has always been an interesting track for me. Just the poor marshalling let it down (although it made it even better to watch ;) ).

        The only problem is that the battle was for 4th, as the lead was occupied by a certain Vettel…

      3. All revved-up says:

        +10 very well articulated! Completely agree. Saw very good racing by the top guys at turns 3 and 4, and clumsy wheel banging by the Massa’s, Perez’s and Maldonado’s.

        Hulk was DOTD. Soaking up the pressure, stuck to his conviction that the Sauber had good traction off turn 2 and positioned his car each lap to execute that to perfection each lap.

      4. Trent says:

        Agree – I had a view of T4,5,6 yesterday and it was non stop action, really great stuff. Tilke got that right for sure.

      5. Grant H says:

        More or less it was the 2 safety cars which gave us the wheel to wheel stuff, and adding to that korea is one of the most DRS dependant tracks for overtaking, S1 is about the only place you can have a go, im not a fan of the track

      6. jjpm says:

        So did Petrov on Alonso a few years back…

    3. Mojo66 says:

      I get tears in my eyes when I think about what the Hulk could do in a competitive car…

      1. Roberto says:

        I get tears in my eyes when I think about what Alonso could do in a competitive car. Fernando is my driver of the day for showing tremendous discipline by not parking his dog of a car half way through the race and walking to the nearest bar for a big glass of cheap Korean whiskey. It’s getting harder and harder to be a Ferrari fan……………………. sigh.

      2. DMyers says:

        I’m inclined to agree with that, but Hulkenberg was magnificent and just wins it for me.

      3. Vin S says:

        If Alonso couldn’t do anything with Ferrari for 4 years and massive development skills, program & money… He should go to America where all cars are even. Geez, he’s been in a priveledged position of having a great team & a servant driver… Yet he fails. He should join Marussia if he cannot make Ferrari work.

      4. Kirk says:

        The Ferrari is the best car after the Red Bull, he has had a competitive car in past years, so you know what he can do (he won two championships and lost three). Although I agree he is a very good driver, I don’t think he deserves de DOTD, he looked bad, blocking the tires a lot, trying to pass some drivers without managing to do it, going out of the track, not his best race at all, and well, following your logic, the Marussia’s drivers should be the drivers of the day because they didn’t park their cars as you mentioned it.

    4. Simmo says:

      Yep! Although I felt that Grosjean also deserves it for his amazing clean drive, but ultimately, it has to be Hulkenberg!

      1. Jay says:

        +1 Grosjean did a great job and seems to be improving race by race. Hope to see better results from him if Lotus can produce a competitive car for next year. Hulkenberg gets the DOD without question.

    5. Jason says:

      Hulkenberg drove like a slightly worse version of a young Kimi Raikkonen. That still makes him massively good.

    6. Ted says:

      In all honesty, as a totally neutral f1 fan, Raikkonen’s demonic charge, and Hulkenberg’s defense were the only things worth watching in that race. Kimi is driving as good as he was in his Mclaren days.

      1. Tim says:

        Seriously, are you really totally neutral? You have no preference on drivers or teams?

    7. Latham says:

      James Allen: You commentated on Kimi Raikkonen’s races when he was at Mclaren. Surely, SURELY, given that his setup was plagued by understeer in Korea, (according to Kimi), he is the fastest driver in f1 again with performances like this?

      1. James Allen says:

        He’s certainly up there when it comes to Pirelli era racing. His qualifying leaves a bit to be desired though at the moment

      2. Tealeaf says:

        Yeah agreed James, how much of a worry is that to Ferrari and Luca I wonder, Ferrari brought him in to push Alonso in qualifying I think in that sense they’ve got the wrong man, maybe Hulkenberg or Bianchi would have been a better bet, but saying all that both of their race crafts are right up there with Seb.

      3. Harshad says:

        James but can you do an article of Lotus tyre usage. That’s what gives them the age over other cars in quiet a few races.
        2 yrs now, and the other teams (except RBR) still haven’t managed this.

      4. NickH says:

        Raikkonen detests understeer, which is what he is suffering with at the moment, especially in qualifying and with the 2012 rubber as the tyres do not turn in sharply like the 2013 ones. He has phenomenon ability to adapt to a car he doesn’t like in races, imagine how fast he would be with his ideal set up, would be like Mclaren 2005 speed again . I really hope Ferrari build a pointy car next year

    8. Tornillo Amarillo says:

      Yes the HULK! I repeat this every weekend.

      Hamilton should not be in the list… Grosjean neither. In fact, it would be between HULK and KIMI only!

  2. Thomas Conway says:

    Hulkenberg was DOtD, but it cannot be stressed how he was aided by the car he was driving. Great top speed and traction. I suspect there are many a Vettel detractor “it’s all the car” who are thrilled with Nico today. Nico kept his head but he’s been in this game long enough to not make silly mistakes.

    1. John Gibson says:

      I think it’s more that he “kept his head” under great pressure – I can think of several drivers (who currently drive in top teams) who would have tried to defend into T1 and thus compromised their exit speed from T2, losing the position in the process. Hulkenberg never did that, even being sufficiently level-headed to let Hamilton through at T1 at one point. This is a sign of greatness. It will be absolutely scandalous if Hulkenberg is left without a drive in 2014.

      1. Sujith says:

        +1.. Hulkenberg showed his class today. He was thinking like 2 or 3 corners ahead and kept a cool head. Something on the likes of what Kimi would do.

        The thing we have to notice here is, he has not been in F1 for that long, and he is driving as if he had say 5 or 6 full seasons under his belt. Keen on seeing where he will be in a top team and how quick he can mature into one of the greats :)

      2. rob h says:

        It will be a crying shame if the hulk doesn’t get a decent drive next season. He demonstrated skill and composure way beyond what is expected of a midfielder,

      3. All revved-up says:

        +10 very well put. Hulk’s ability to see the big picture in the turns 1, 2 and 3 sequence was very impressive.

        It’s so great to hear a segment of us F1 fans enjoy and appreciate that level of racing.

        There’s a surprisingly vocal segment who ceaselessly moan to the rest of the world about the lack of racing in F1, when there’s in fact so much good racing going on.

      4. Tim says:

        @All Revved Up
        There’s a surprisingly vocal segment who ceaselessly moan to the rest of the world about the lack of racing in F1, when there’s in fact so much good racing going on….

        You are right, there is plenty of racing going on. It’s just that it’s not for the lead – watching a scrap for 4th/5th place doesn’t have the same excitement (for me anyway).

      5. Yak says:

        Exactly. His car had great traction and straight line speed, but it wouldn’t have been quite so strong had he let Hamilton spook him into driving defensively. What kept Hamilton behind was Hulkenberg sticking to his racing line and getting the best exit out on to the straights. And not just once, but lap after lap, against a guy with a bit of a history of being pretty bold in taking big dives in heavy braking zones. He stuck to his line, used the car’s strengths, and never gave Hamilton that option.

        Hulkenberg was DotD for me.

      6. Rishi says:

        Did anyone else remember Hamilton v Webber for 2nd place two years ago at this track? Because the same thing happened! Webber was faster in the corners and kept getting a good run out of the last corner but Lewis had the speed on the straights. Once or twice Webber came through on the inside into Turn 1 but Lewis got him straight back on the exit. I think Thomas Conway makes good points: Nico Hulkenberg stand-out DotD but car also set up very well (good straight line speed and traction). But you guys also right to point out that Nico deserves credit for not instinctively defending the inside.

        Btw as a side issue hope the likes of Nico Rosberg, Mark Webber and, in particular, Esteban Gutierrez have the rub of the green at Suzuka because they all had unfortunate setbacks in the race yesterday and Esteban is improving well now and inching closer towards that first championship point.

    2. Dan says:

      Agree with Hulk of course.

      Was interesting how he used the attributes of his car to defend. Was exactly how Lewis himself managed to defend against Webber last year by concentrating on getting the drive out of T1/T2.

      Quite like the Korea circuit. Seems to have a good sequence of corners/straights that allow for punch/counter-punch overtaking battles. A bit like Turkey.

      Tilke takes a pasting too often but I think Yeongam is a good circuit. Drivers seem to enjoy it too.

      1. KRB says:

        2011 y’mean (for Ham-Web), but it wasn’t as pronounced then (the drive off of T1 & T2) as it was today for Hulk.

        I don’t like the Korean circuit, I’m afraid. I think the DRS also hampers this track.

      2. Alexis says:

        I agree. People rave about Suzuka as well, but races there are never that interesting. Next week will be an anti-climax, unless it rains.

      3. DonSimon says:

        That’s the spirit.

    3. Mojo66 says:

      If it was all the car, I wonder why Guiterrez only finished 9th…

      1. Stephen Taylor says:

        11th actually

      2. Nathhulal says:

        Can we extend that logic to the performance gap between Vettel and Webber as well?

      3. mhilgtx says:

        Yes Vettels inside team at Red Bull conspired not only to have Mark get hit, but to catch on fire at yet another race so that Vettel and this time Hulkenberg could get the win and points. At the same time they were able to clandestinely re-route Gutierrez’s Coanda exhausts to exit out the front of the car in some kind of super secret Newy designed invisible carbon-plutonium fiber.

        The US broadcast and I think maybe the UK discussed how well Vettel was doing at exploiting his cars design. After watching Hulkenberg shoot out away from turns like he was they said and I think it was said here as well that Sauber had made the most strides in their exhaust flow other than Red Bull.

        DOtD is Hulkenberg followed by Kimi and the Vettel. Hulk because he has a slower car, Kimi because of where he started and Vettel because he is the driver of the year.

    4. petes says:

      Most comical post of the year. Congrats!

  3. Lars says:

    Always Kimi but today I have to hand it to
    Nico Hulkenberg

  4. Sen says:

    Kimi Raikkonen,

    Though qualifying is not his forte its always in the Sundays he delivers a spectacular drive he did that yet again this week from P9 to P2 taking some calculated risks & made a brilliant pass over Romain

    1. Sujith says:

      Yep he knows he is not up to the mark of Grosjean with the new tyres (I mean that is what he said his problem was) admits his team-mate is quicker and promises he will work on getting the speed back.

      But above all that, the points are given on a Sunday and he does a great job when it matters does he?

      I really don’t understand why people comment about his motivation. Really a definition of a pure racer who is fair and has a huge respect for other drivers on track in wheel to wheel battles, knows when to quit and when to go for it. Race-craft at its best :D

      1. quest says:

        He was inch perfect today and had a really satisfied smile on face post race which is really unusual for him. :)

        Funniest was Grosjean asking for team orders. It is bad enough when it is done for the top guys when they are in the championship fight. What has Grosjean done to deserve team orders. And when his race engineer encouraged saying he has the pace to overtake back, he shamelessly replied ” No no, I cant”.

      2. Trixie says:

        Kimi tried to hide a contented smile behind his face towel when GRO explained to VET how he was overtaken when he made a mistake at T15. At the same time he gave VET a knowing look that said so much without having uttered a word during GRO’s lengthy chatter with the winner.
        I’ll never hesitate to give Kimi the DOTD, but in this instance, I give it to HUL for pulling off an impressive drive despite the constant pressures from both HAM and ALO.
        Although GRO had a great start, he made a mistake under pressure at the 2nd re-start and wanted his team to order the place back. Funny enough, Lotus would probably have done so, if only Kimi isn’t still owed his back salary!

        I really feel HUL will fill Kimi’s shoes at Lotus next year more than competently enough if he does get the drive.

  5. Hermann says:

    No doubts … Nico Hulkenberg! Well done Nico, well done Sauber!

  6. Adnan says:

    Nico Hulkenberg without a doubt. I hope he gets a race seat with a top team next year.

  7. Jeremy J says:

    Hulk, of course. Very composed.

  8. Allan says:

    Vettel drove a faultless race, but in terms of exceeding expectations, it was definitely Hulkenberg. He utilized his car in a very effective way and withstood sustained pressure from a very good attacker.

    In general there was a lot of good racing up and down the order today. It would have been exciting to see how Rosberg would have gotten on without the wing failure, and no doubt Webber was set to be in the mix too.

  9. Rob01 says:

    Hulk then Seb. Hamilton shouldn’t be one of the options. Good drives for both Lotus drivers and also Rosberg but as I say Hulk drove brilliantly and the usual class drive from Vettel kept everything under control.

    1. Skan says:

      Agree that Hamilton shouldnt have figured in the list. He was caught napping both at the start of the race and the restart after the second safety car. One of his dull days.

  10. Alexander Supertramp says:

    Hulk for me..

    Like James suggests, Lewis had a strong first half of the race and probably had better pace in the last stint than he could show.But he really fell off the cliff relatively early on in the 2nd stint. Merc still has some tweeks to manage on the tyre management front and Suzuka will likely put more stress on the tyres. Anyhow, not his best drive by a long shot but definitely some positives.

    1. Tealeaf says:

      Na Hamilton’s tactic is use a rich fuel mix and all available tyre grip and then when that doesn’t work and Nico closes in on him he starts talking to the team in a rude manner.

  11. Not sure why Hamilton was even on the list ?? No doubt that Hulkenburg did a great job, comparatively speaking and with the equipment available. Kimi accomplished the most though. That is, if you consider overtaking as more reflective of a drive than defending, but we all have our perspectives and the choice was challenging. Great to see Hulkenburg producing now following the difficult earlier part of the year.

  12. Irish con says:

    Hulkenburg and then kimi. Were has the sauber traction been all year ? That was impressive and shows clearly that it’s not ferrari’s engine for there traction problems.

    1. Elie says:

      They’ve obviously found something haven’t they

  13. Jon says:

    Has to be Hulkenberg. Crazy that he has not been snapped up by a top team yet.

  14. madmax says:

    Easily Hulkenberg.

    Best team Mercedes for finding new and innovative ways to stop their number 2 driver being a threat to number 1.

    The collapsible front wing is automatically triggered when your number 2 driver dares an attempt to pass the designated number 1.

    1. Dave C says:

      Hmmm yeah I was wondering too why Rosberg has been at the recieving end of dubious strategies and car failures this season but yes Hulkenberg and then Vettel for driver of the day and even Grosjean drove a classy race for a change even though Kimi did overtake him but the speed was there.

      1. Could it be that they share engineers with the RB folks?

      2. mhilgtx says:

        Newy strikes again! :)

    2. KRB says:

      Hope this is said in jest. Why would Mercedes do anything to hurt their team score when they’re currently in a death-match with Ferrari for 2nd?!?!

      Just to coddle one of their drivers?

      1. madmax says:

        It was obviously a joke!

        But at the same time Mercedes seem to somehow be able to only field one reliable car. Last year Schumacher had multiple car failures and now Rosberg has them.

        Add that to Rosberg did not have one qualifying between Monaco and Singapore(6 GPs) where car unreliability or a team mess up didn’t effect it.

        I don’t for one moment Mercedes would do anything to sabotage one of their cars but obviously there has to be some difference in quality checks or something one car is getting compared to the other.

  15. Hugy says:

    THEEEEEEEEE HUUUUUULLLLLLLK!

    Come on McLaren! Sign Him! Button is already pretty tall.

  16. RC says:

    SV

    about time he gets credit for back-to-back grand slam

    1. Miha Bevc says:

      I noticed that Grand Slam / Grand Chelem is a really rare feat. Who would have thought that Schumacher only has 5 (from all those dominant years) ? Senna only 4, Fangio 2, Prost none! Drivers have more titles than Grand Chelems.

      I think this was only 4th for Vettel, and 2nd in a row.

      1. K says:

        No Grand Slam, when he pitted Webber led the race.

        Hulk gets the drive for me, than Kimi. Vettel would get it if Hulk and Kimi had not done what they did.

      2. DB says:

        I think Webber didn’t lead over the line, where this things are counted. The live timing graph, at least, showed Vettel led all laps.

        I didn’t do a 100% thorough check, but I believe this may have been the second time a driver has scored back to back Grand Slams. Jim Clark did it in 1963.

        Most in a year is 3: Jim Clark in 1963 and 1965 and Nigel Mansell in 1992.

      3. Magos says:

        It was! Webber not led the entire lap!!!

      4. KRB says:

        I thought so too (Webber leading), but officially they have it down as Vettel leading the lap.

    2. Stuart Harrison says:

      Yes, Vettel wins driver of the day for me too – he’s finally driven me away from the sport.

      So long, Formula 1, I’ve teetered on the edge of engagement with this sport over the past year or so but Vettel and Red Bull’s continuing domination of the sport has meant it is no longer entertaining and I have better ways to spend my time.

      To those who reply with “Good riddance” or “Vettel [mod]!” posts are kind of missing the point of why I’m leaving – F1 has a duty to entertain those who choose how they are entertained; frankly, those who would watch the sport regardless of how it is run are none of their concern – they need to be worried about those who are of a more fickle nature, like me.

      I’ve repeatedly posted about my views on this website as I see it as by far the best F1 discussion forum on the internet – James, you should be credited with that, I will miss your incredible insights into the sport.

      Congratulations to Seb for winning four straight titles, two of which were a masterclass in utter domination of the sport. I do have to admit he has something, precisely the same something that drove me away from F1 during the Schumacher era.

      I’ll be back, but only when the domination stops. For everyone concerned, I hope that happens sooner rather than later.

      Au revior!

      1. James Allen says:

        There’s a lot more to F1 than Vettel and race wins.

        As this site shows, the sport has great depth and fascinating aspects which have nothing to do with him

      2. ACx says:

        I too am a Vettel skeptic, I don’t buy the hype and mostly credit Newey and his team, but these days the TV coverage doesn’t just follow the leader like it used to do. So, even though the lead drive is an over rated snore fest, we do get to see a lot more of the action behind, and rarely see Vettel at all. I think the TV guys are helping us out there.

        However, it has to be said, if the action is not for the lead, it is way less exciting than if it were another driver(s) challenging for the lead.

      3. KRB says:

        It’s not ideal for F1, has to be said. Wins are what matters, and if there’s little contest for them, the fickle viewer will turn off.

        Usually, in a year with a dominant car, we’d at least have a two-man battle, between the drivers in that car. But Vettel can work the EBD, and do the counter-intuitive driving req’d to get the best out of it. Webber can’t, for whatever reason. It makes it all a damp squib.

        In years past with dominant cars, there was also more chance of car failures, to act as a “spread the wealth” mechanism. That’s not the case now … breakdowns are more rare, relatively speaking.

        Would’ve been nice if the new regs had come in this year (as originally planned), rather than next year.

      4. dimitris says:

        F1 is about perfection, the ultimate that humans can accomplish with a machine. It can never be boring!! A perfect race for me by one driver, even if monotonous to most, is the most enjoyable thing to watch. I enjoy the precision of Kimi and Seb, the impetuosity of Lewis, the calculated and relentless pursuit of Alonso, the bold as well as the calculated overtakes, and the great defensive drives. It is not who wins at the end, but how well the drivers have performed during the race. And I must admit, this year’s crop of drivers is one of the best ever.

      5. Stuart Harrison says:

        You honour me with a reply, it pains me that it was under such circumstances.

        I agree with you James, but the “lot more” can only keep the fickle-fan like myself engaged for so long. The regulation stability has effectively killed any “must have” technology arms-race this year, as we’ve had in previous years; the tyre management issues are meaning the drivers are not pushing the cars anywhere close to 100%; the driver shuffling has already filled the desirable seats for next years cars so soon after mid season (Hulk to McLaren? Maybe); the doors have effectively closed on this season, as they did 2/3rds of the way through 2011.

        There are other aspects to F1 that I love as well, I went out of my way to view the “Fast Forward: 20 ways F1 is changing our world” exhibition in the Science Museum a few years back and loved it – but motorsport is about racing and racing is about winning and only one gentleman is doing that right now, so there’s kind of no point turning up to every race.

        I will continue to follow this website as it is one of the few that go beyond the events of the race and brings in the wider picture and I’ll still be ordering a copy of your book later in the year.

        Thanks for a great website.

      6. Nige says:

        Hang in there f1 is still the greatest sport. We can all get through this difficult time together because things will change. Vettel is good and all the media will say how sublime he is but the real fans can see that car is planted to the track compared to the rest. It works best in clean air that is why Vettel does so well and webber doesn’t. Webber always ends up behind other cars and the red bull doesn’t work as well. Things will change they always do!!

      7. David C says:

        BYE BYE, Hope you come back when someone you like wins a few races

      8. Monika says:

        +1000 Same feeling as 2002-2004 with Schumacher. Came back to enjoy pure racing with the solid competition between Alonso and Kimi in 2005. Hope this scenario changes soon :(

      9. Tickety-boo says:

        I don’t enjoy the predictability of the SV & RedBull combination, but it is for the rest of the grid to be as innovative and creative with their design and strategy. JA is correct in what he says, it is a fascinating sport and there are always periods where a team enjoys supremacy for a while, McLaren, Ferrari, Williams have all been there as were others, and the development/technology race is amazing with other industries benefiting – so all is not lost.
        I hope 2014 lives up to the hype and fewer fabricated scenarios with DRS, tyres and the like, spoil it.
        Stick around,watch from 2nd place back (and hit mute when SV crosses the line) blink and you might miss something wonderful.

      10. rossco says:

        [mod]. Its not wwf with scripted entertainment. It is what it is. Best team with a top driver winning races.

        he only really dominated in the last 5 races. Up until then the championship was very close. Just because vettel wins doesn’t mean its not exciting.

      11. J. Pankow says:

        Ciao. See you in March!

      12. Stuart Harrison says:

        I have to admire your optimism :)

      13. Siobhan says:

        Can’t reply directly to dimitris Reply:
        October 7th, 2013 at 6:43 am..

        Well said Dimitris.. this is what I say when people ask why I watch cars go around in circles.. Thank you!

      14. alanf1 says:

        Me think it is a bit of a white lie. You are watching it and gonna do it. Doubt this attitude is a F1 fan’s one.

      15. Stuart Harrison says:

        A true F1 fan would watch the sport if the cars were tarred & feathered and the tyres were made out of cottage cheese.

        I count myself as someone who cares about the sport and is therefore dismayed when it becomes so predictable and devoid of entertainment value. I concern myself about what can be done to make the sport better for all who wish to watch. At the end of the day, F1, like many top sports, is a business first and a sport second – it’s a medium used to promote brands and without eyes on the brands, the sport will slowly die. So it’s worth paying attention to what the likes of me think as we have the eyes that need to be kept watching the sport.

        And, no word of a lie – this is the first race I’ve chosen not to watch since 2007. I watched barely a quarter of the previous two races (Monza and Singapore), I couldn’t face wasting ~2hrs of my life not watching Vettel win (let’s face it, after he disappears in the first two laps, you barely see him again).

      16. kevin green says:

        hooplicker!

      17. Ravi says:

        Yes, lets start fixing races to entertain the fickle minded and lets do away with excellence.

    3. Anil says:

      Webber led the race for a lap mate.

  17. Tealeaf says:

    Hamilton. Brilliant drive to easily beat Rosberg and Alonso, only to be beaten by faster cars that have suspected traction control like Hulkenberg who was at least 20 metres earlier on the throttle and also that overpowered Newey car gifted another win even Chilton can win in that car. Alonso yet again as the best driver whilst driving a dog of a car…

    Then I woke up again and realised the slanders thats been going on here are easily false, Alonso his usual bridesmaid, Vettel his usual machine like consistency and domination and of course Hulkenberg excellent controlled drive nice job.

    1. Rush says:

      Did u really watch the race HAM started 2 finished
      4th a brilliant drive !!!!!!!!!

      1. Tealeaf says:

        I thought he finished 5th? And just incase you didn’t read rhe whole post I wss being sarcastic lol the drive goes to Hulk the hamilton thing was a joke.

      2. Abraham says:

        Perhaps you don’t know tealeaf. He is Hamilton hater and he is actually mocking him. I am huge fan of Hamilton but because of some nutters like tealeaf, sebee … I am having difficulty to like Vettel.

      3. Tealeaf says:

        Actually I’m not a Hamilton [mod] I was a believer back in 2007-2008 and actually still think he’s a fast driver, but his attitude since his new management and no results to back up his wild hype has made me sick the guy isn’t even better overall than Button or Rosberg, do I believe Vettel, Hulkenberg and even Bianchi are better overall drivers with more potential? Yes they are but I’m not going to deny Hamilton has speed but lacks intelligence even Rosberg can match or beat him over a race distance with fuel and tyre management then you’ll see Hamilton crying and swearing to the team, I do wonder how Lewis would do in the 2nd Redbull I suspect flashes of brilliance and a few wins but I doubt he’s faster than Webber coz Rosberg was blown away by Webber and clearly slower but Nico isn’t being blown away by Hamilton, so I doubt Lewis will win another title unless he gets undisbuted number 1 status and has a car thats significantly faster than the main challengers.

      4. Cos says:

        @ Rush….and did you really read what he/she wrote, or only half read and them jumped to conclusions?….may I suggest you re-read the last paragraph

    2. Valois says:

      @Tealeaf “and also that overpowered Newey car gifted another win even Chilton can win in that car”

      Do you really rate CHI so much better than WEB?

      1. Tealeaf says:

        Of course ;) Chilton gets smashed by Bianchi and works on his deficiencies and now is actually only a coupke of tenths from his team mate, when Webber gets beat he sulks and cry to the media or anyone that’ll listen.

    3. Cakes says:

      hahaha..+1..great post

    4. Dave Aston says:

      Of course, Chilton couldn’t win in that car. Webber can’t even score half his teammate’s total. Good grief.

    5. Richard says:

      Yes I agree with that. As I’ve said before so much is now with the car and how it interacts with the tyres that the driver is rather secondary to that, and if your car doesn’t have the appropriate attributes then you are going backwards. Mercedes in most parts of the race lacked the traction, and of course they messed up not bringing Hamilton in earlier, however the accelerated tyre wear came about by Hamilton pushing harder to keep up with the front running cars. It is actually a testament to Hamilton skill that he is able to get such a qualifying lap out of a relatively underperforming car.

  18. Michael S says:

    Kimi hands down… only guy out there making strong passes today on Ricardo, Alonso, Grosjean… Kimi was on it today! Meanwhile every one else was playing follow the leader.

    1. urmomspie says:

      Everyone? Haha, the nerve. You musn’t have seen the battles for 4th and 10th. That was exciting.

  19. Heinz says:

    Kimi Raikkonen.
    In fairness it was a superb drive that had very little to do with luck.
    Otherwise I would have voted Hulk. But will Hulk be able to repeat this defense in the face of Hamilton again? Or was it circuit specific?

    1. Richard says:

      All depends on the car. It it has the traction out of the corners like the Sauber had in Korea then yes. Strategy brought Raikkenon into contention.

  20. Waleran says:

    Do you need to ask? Hulkenberg showed depths of quality which should ensure a top level seat next year.
    Did you hear him analysing the end game risks over the radio whilst fighting off Hamilton? Cool under pressure.

    1. KRB says:

      Well surely a much cooler head could’ve come up with a better analogy … “fall off like bananas”? Maybe it’s a German turn of phrase.

      I kid.

  21. Maybet says:

    Hulkenberg. Im not sure why Lewis is on the list though.

    Special mention to Kimi….

    No matter how much he struggle, his bulletproof pace on Sunday often allow him to recover.

    Hope he can get better setup for next race as the new pirelli seems to hurt him more in terms of weaker front end.

    1. Valois says:

      On an unrelated note, what if Alonso gets trashed by Kimi next year? That should be total fun to watch.

  22. Anne says:

    The Hulk. Honorable mention Lotus team of the day.

  23. Glennb says:

    Hulk for me. Honorable mentions to Rosberg & Grosjean.

  24. EA says:

    Hulkenberg.

    And no, unlike Vettel’s perfomances this was not only the car.

    Yes, The Sauber was better in some aspects (namely traction out of turns and that top speed), but over a whole lap he did not have the 2s a lap Vettel normally has under him. Hulkenberg was actually able to fight against and beat overall evenly matched cars (in fact didnt those cars actually qualied ahead of him?) and solid drivers. Some circumstances helped him, but he had a solid drive.

    1. Miha Bevc says:

      Yes, Vettel really sucks doesn’t he?

    2. sid says:

      Pls watch German go 2013

      1. EA says:

        So how many cars which Qualified ahead of him was he actually able to keep behind? was it the mercs? because he was not the only one who got ahead the mercs in that race. Webber didnt Q that bad either.

        Germany 2013 was mostly car. As usual.

      2. EA says:

        Not sure how fast Webber actually was that race; but he probably had a bad start, a bad pitstop or a penalty.

        Other than that, pls remind me again how many FASTER cars did he keep behind?

      3. Tealeaf says:

        What Germany 2013? Actually in the race the Lotus was the quicker car and maybe in certain phases the Mercedes and Ferrari, the real measure is Webber even when he has an incident free race he looks ordinary, he’s not even capable of winning a race in this ‘amazing’ car so there you go I answered for sid the LOTUS was the quicker race car in Germany.

      4. EA says:

        No. Nico’s Sauber was at no point faster than either the Mercs or Ferraris. He managed to stay ahead through a good strategy, good drive and the car’s strenghts. But at any given point througout the weekend, those cars were faster than him.

        On the other hand… Both Red Bulls were already faster than Lotus in Q. And on comparable pace during the whole race. Yes, Lotus was good at keeping the tires longer, but by the point when they did have a slight advantage, the RB was already far ahead because it was already faster. They pretty much had a front row lockup and a 1-2 had it not been for strange situations….

    3. Dave C says:

      Oh yeah definitely Vettel won only because of the ‘car’ and as someone says even Chilton could win in the Redbull! Yeah right the 2 drivers today were obviously Hulk and Vettel no ifs or buts.

      1. David C says:

        I think if chilton was in a redbull and SV was in the marussia it would be close

      2. Tealeaf says:

        Haha you’re probably right there, and I would bet if Seb was in that Sauber he could make the podium maybe even win if it rains and they find a good setup.

    4. KRB says:

      Gary Anderson’s latest column is instructive:

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/formula1/24422038

      “Red Bull use their rear bodywork to keep the exhaust gases attached all the way to the area they want them.

      “Lots of other teams – including Ferrari – have it blowing across a hole and when you do that, the gases just get swept away by the mass airflow.

      “It’s much harder to get them going in the right place.

      “The result from Korea is not a coincidence; Red Bull, Lotus and Sauber finished ahead of everyone else and they are the only teams who use that bodywork philosophy.”

      … and later on in the same article:

      “But good traction is exactly what allowed Sauber’s Nico Hulkenberg to stay ahead of Alonso and Lewis Hamilton in Korea, and it comes down to the exhausts giving better rear downforce coming off the corners – and therefore more grip.”

      Lewis was the first of the non-Sauber/RBR-Coanda solution drivers.

      What Korea showed is the difference a decent driver (Hulkenberg) can make over a pay driver (Gutierrez). You would think other lower teams would pay attention. Hulkenberg has allowed Sauber to jump Toro Rosso for 7th (on countback) on his own … put two EG’s in the car, and they’d be behind Williams in 9th!

      1. Tealeaf says:

        Az I said before Gary Anderson’s words means nothing, its great him pretending to paint a picture of how Hamilton is the best driver and its all other cars that beats him not drivers but then look at his comments about the Mclaren at beginning of the year when he was drooling over the design saying how good it is and how the rear of the body looks so efficient and how the high nose would allow Mclaren to out develop other teams, gone pretty quiet about the car now hasn’t he???

      2. KRB says:

        Seems like you didn’t read the article. Anderson has been lauding Vettel of late, so frankly I don’t see where this accusation of Hamilton puffery is coming from, though it’s despairingly predictable.

      3. Richard says:

        Yes well I can understand why Anderson thought the Mclaren might be good because they appeared to have done all the right things, but as ever the devil is in the detail, and somehow they lost it with too great a departure from the previous years car. Red Bull by comparison have a very good basic car, and slowly develop clever ideas to improve the performance.

      4. James Allen says:

        He wasn’t the only one. Most people there that day thought it looked like a really imaginative step on from a very good car in 2012.

        They messed up the correlation

  25. The Spanish Inquisitor says:

    Hulk = 10/10
    Grosjean = 8/10
    Kimi = 7/10
    Hamilton = 3/10
    Alonso = 0.5/10
    Perez = -1/10

    Vettel = Out of category

    1. Rob Newman says:

      Booooooo!!

    2. Chris Normal says:

      Grosjean = 8/10
      Kimi = 7/10

      One made up seven places and passed the other. One finished in his starting position.

      It’s hard for me to see this reasoning.Without a failure from car #1 it was impossible for Kimi to perform any better. Even if Grosjean held second I would have to disagree with these numbers.

    3. JF says:

      True. Vettel is so good he stands in a class of his own.

      1. Richard says:

        Well his car certainly is!

    4. Anil says:

      Lol at your Alonso ranking, the car was poor today and he did the best he could, fighting Lewis Hamilton to the very end.

  26. Andrew M says:

    Hulk all the way really, if Lotus don’t snap him up then they need their heads examined.

    Very good drive by Kimi too, he crept up to the podium very well, I dare say helped a little by the safety car.

  27. Rich_ZA says:

    Hulkenberg drove well but as Thomas said the Sauber was really on form today – he was my DOtD. I am so happy that my team and driver did well. Kimi put in another stellar performance. Given that Nico had the nose problem and lengthy pit stop to be as close to Lewis was pretty impressive too.

  28. Janis says:

    Hulkenberg it is.
    Kept his head under huge pressure from Alonso and Hamilton. And it’s not easy!
    Rosberg also did well. Very different from Hamilton who destroyed his second set of tyres by pushing too much in turn 11.
    And then it’s Vettel. It helps to have a good car, but it takes a great driver to extract all performance there is out of it.

  29. David C says:

    NH all the way, it was a great all round performance, great work by Sauber recently with both cars qualifying in the top 10. I thought JB had a good race maybe not DOtD but worth a mention.

  30. Tom says:

    Adrain Newey

    1. Rob Newman says:

      I didn’t see him in Korea. Which car was he driving?

      1. Random 79 says:

        The fire jeep ;)

      2. Dave C says:

        Vettel is really a machine that was controlled by Newey back in Milton Keynes via a racing simulator ;)

  31. Aadil says:

    Further proof Red Bull and Ferrari chose the wrong drivers for 2014.

    At least Ferrari hired a world champ.

    How I wish Mclaren could give Hulk chance next year.

    1. MelB says:

      FURTHER proof? On what basis do you draw such conclusions?

      1. BW says:

        He meant Alonso, I guess.

      2. MelB says:

        Regardless of who he ment.

      3. BurgerF1 says:

        I think he means Hulk should have been picked up by RB or Ferrari, rather than DR and KR respectively.

      4. Aadil says:

        Further proof? What have u been watching these past few seasons?

        * Hulkenburg’s Pole in Brazil 2010 in a dog of a Williams.
        * Leading in Brazil last year in a Force India
        * Qualifying 3rd in Monza this year in a Sauber
        (out Qualifying Mercs & Ferrari’s in the process)& finishing 5th in the race
        * Finishing the this last race ahead of 2 world champions driving vastly better cars then him.

        Do those conclusions ring any bells?

        Clearly he has star quality. His a Champion in waiting.

        What has Ricciardo done @ all in F1 to compare?
        Nothing!!!Squat!!!Zich!!! and his had a better car all season long.

        As for Kimi yes his a world champ and yes his driving amazingly well but his also going to be 34 next year.When u 34 u not going to get any better u can only get worse. Short term he maybe great for Ferrari but long term he wont.

        Nuf said.

      5. Simon Donald says:

        Agreed 100%. Wish my team had snapped him up instead of Perez last year.

      6. Tealeaf says:

        Even though I agree about Hulkenberg being a top driver I wouldn’t put down Ricciardo he is a consistently fast driver and would be closely matched with Hulk if they were driving in the same car, you watch he will shock Seb a few times next season.

      7. MelB says:

        * Hulkenburg’s Pole in Brazil 2010 in a dog of a Williams.
        * Leading in Brazil last year in a Force India
        * Qualifying 3rd in Monza this year in a Sauber
        (out Qualifying Mercs & Ferrari’s in the process)& finishing 5th in the race
        * Finishing the this last race ahead of 2 world champions driving vastly better cars then him.

        Good performances yes, but not stuff that are going to shine in a cv. The Sauber and the Force India for that matter have been very good cars in some races. However, I am convinced that we will see the Hulk on the podium many times in the future.

  32. simon mawdsley says:

    The Hulk

    ….and when will he get a decent drive??????

  33. Iwan says:

    The Hulk

    1. Aadil says:

      Exactly what else does this guy need to do to get break!!

      Maybe he needs to win a race in a Sauber to get break!!

      Clearly his 1 of the most talented drivers currently in F1!

      1. Iwan Kemp says:

        Bucket loads of cash. Sadly. Then the teams will fall over themselves to sign him.

    1. MelB says:

      … to Hulkenberg

  34. Miha Bevc says:

    Hulkeberg, fo sure!
    Fire truck driver close second, though…

  35. Rob Newman says:

    It’s no brainer – The HULK!

    I was very impressed with Grosjean’s drive but he shouldn’t have asked his team to move Kimi just because he was faster. Kimi also did a fantastic race.

    Vettel was impressive as ever.

    That Fire Car was amusing.

    Webber must have some burning anger inside him he has managed to set two of his cars on fire.

    Just going through the news flying this week, I was thinking which statement was most stupid. One driver saying they work harder while others hang their family jewels in the pool or another driver saying he is going to win the championship because Team USA won the America’s Cup from 1-8 down and on 9-8. Some people never learn!

    Hamilton thinks very highly of himself and Alonso. If they belong to a higher calibre, then they should do all that talking on the track and not to the media. I think they fear 4ettel!

    1. Jane_Kay says:

      +1

      When will Hulk get a chance to go to a top team? Are they blind or something? He should have been in Ferrari by now! (although I like Kimi very much)

    2. Fireman says:

      Spot on, Rob. A lot of bruised egos on the paddock today. Hamilton is fast, but he has serious character flaws. He isn’t even that young anymore so it’s unlikely that he will mature beyond what he’s now.

    3. Richard says:

      No they simply envy his car!

  36. 1. Raikkonen
    2. Hülk
    3. Botta

  37. Siddle says:

    It has to be Nico with a big assist from Lewis in making a show. There was an exhibition today of brilliant fair driving from almost all of the drivers.

    Good though the show was, one of the interesting things in Nico/Lewis tussle is the Mercedes Pit Wall contribution to allowing that situation to take place. It reminded me of LH’s McLaren years.

    Perhaps Paddy Lowe just likes his drivers to be given a challenge.

    At least it contributes to the show for which should all be very grateful.

    Well done the Hulk.

    Siddle

  38. BW says:

    The most interesting thing was who would be nominated beyond the Top4. I laughed out loud when I saw the name of the driver who’d been overtaken twice in even conditions and hopelessy fought to recover at all.
    And when it comes to real contenders:
    VET – winner is always to be taken into account, but this time there was nothing particular in his drive, except perhaps for his usual get-away-for-two-seconds. Reasonable drive, was lucky with SC and Lotus’ ‘fair-racing’.
    GRO – drove for DOTD for most of the race, but the mistake resulting in loss of position was the flaw (and for him SC was rather bad news).
    RAI – from P9 to P2 is an achievement, with nice overtakes, even if getting past Hulkenberg train was due to wise pitstop decision and SC worked in his favour.
    But, of course, variety and quality of defensive moves by Hulkenberg makes him a solid winner today.

    1. Rush says:

      +100000000000

    2. Dave C says:

      My thoughts exactly! Don’t mistaken Rosberg’s measured drive he outdrove Hamilton yet again but not recognised. Worried about Di Resta his form and luck has taken a nose dive since his promising start in 2011 I do wonder if he will be left out in the cold next year.

      1. L.B says:

        Yes, very good measured drive from Rosberg. He knows his car’s limits and won’t try to push them…but that’s boring for us, the viewers. He could have put Alonso under a bit of pressure at the end but was content to nurse his tyres to the finish line.

    3. madmax says:

      I’ll admit laughed to at that one but not surprised as it seems to have happened a lot this year.

      Will give Lewis full marks though for giving entertainment. Who else would go flat out and blow their tyres then give classic quotes over the radio.

      1. Tealeaf says:

        Perez did… but he didn’t uselss classless words blaming the team, and just to note I’m not praising either driver they both were quite shocking.

  39. Sujith says:

    Nico Hulkenberg, Kimi Raikkonen and Sebastian Vettel

  40. albert says:

    Hulk of course…

    But why is Ham on the list? Because he destroyed his tyres? Pretty biased selection

  41. CYeo says:

    I believe the Highlander films tag-line is most appropriate:

    There can be only one – Hulkenberg.

  42. Warren says:

    Incredible hulk

  43. Paige says:

    Today is the day that Nico Hulkenberg made me seriously reconsider my thoughts about who the best driver in F1 is.

    1. dimitris says:

      Do not judge by one race. Nico is a good driver, but does not have the charisma of the current top drivers. He will not be an Alonso, Vettel, Kimi or Lewis. He will be a good, solid driver, he will win races, but has not shown, in my opinion of course, the brilliance the above drivers showed in their rookie year. We all knew that Kimi and Fernado would be WDC as soon as they stepped into an F1 car. The same for Lewis and Sebastian. Kimi almost won the WDC in 2003, when he was only 23, with a dog of a car and a mid-season tyre change, and Fernado won it at 23 in 2005. Did anyone say the same about Nico?

      I do hope he gets a drive next year in a a competitive team, otherwise pay drivers will just flood F1.

  44. Nige says:

    There is something wrong with F1 the best drivers are no longer getting cars they deserve. Hulkenburg is a prime example he was excellent today and deserves a top drive. Vettel just seems to be in another competition. The problem he has is the races he wins won’t be considered as great races. They may look back and think great performance but the races are just over before they start, which says a lot about his and red bull’s talent but it’s not good racing. The tv editor agreed as we only saw him a few times the race.

    1. Sam says:

      I wonder if sponsors ever get worried that their brand is not getting enough air time because the car they’re sponsoring is too good and therefore rarely on screen.

      1. Random 79 says:

        I doubt they’d worry.

        A brand on a winning car is a winning brand, and it really only needs to be shown when the winning car crosses the finish line.

        Anything else is secondary…literally :)

      2. Ding wamage says:

        I always wonder about the logic behind this. Does being a ‘winning brand’ really increase the sale of the Red Bull energy drink or whatever it is that brings money to that company? I’ve actually never drunk the drink myself but I’ve seen a few people say that they are so fed up of Vettel/Red Bull that they’ve started boycotting it. I mean it isn’t that difficult to just change to a less annoying brand.

      3. Random 79 says:

        Same, but Vettel or no Vettel I wouldn’t drink that stuff if you paid me anyway :)

        But what you say is a good point, and I’m betting that if Red Bull and Vettel continue to dominate for the next few years sales for brands like Monster might just increase.

        People are funny like that ;)

      4. Me says:

        @Random 79

        “People are funny like that”

        You mean they’re idiotic?

      5. Random 79 says:

        @Me (you)

        No, if I meant that I would have written “people are idiotic like that”.

        When I say people are funny I mean that they sometimes do things that don’t make sense.

        Ding’s right: Even though Red Bull is clearly a winning brand and team, too much winning can sometimes be a bad thing.

        Just look at Vettel, the guy is driving pretty much perfectly and logically everyone should be cheering him, but instead some people are booing him. It’s not logical or sensible and it’s certainly not funny in a ‘ha ha’ sense, but that doesn’t stop it happening.

  45. Random 79 says:

    Hulk for a great drive and keeping cool under pressure, something that is not easy for any driver.

    Good to see some good racing, but kind of a shame to see it so limited by the tyre wear.

    Without criticizing, considering that Pirelli have seemed to be going conservative lately super softs were (in retrospect) a strange choice.

    Suzuka next week is one of my favourite circuits – let’s hope Pirelli get it right.

  46. quest says:

    The biggest thing that separates the best and the rest is consistency. Only the Hulk among the up and coming drivers has the kind of consistency that says potential future WDC. Still nobody seems to want to give him a chance.

    His defence at the end was really amazing. Not one mistake. No overagressive defending that you see from the likes of Perez.

    1. Dave C says:

      And also no lock ups.

      1. Random 79 says:

        I saw a few lockups from Hulk (into the 2nd corner I think), but still seriously impressive stuff.

  47. Rayz says:

    I think the WORST DRIVER OF THE DAY is a far more compelling affair this time around.
    And here are the contestants:

    1. Paul Di Resta – Poor quali show again coupled with an average race quickly ended by a complete lack of talent through a not so difficult corner. 4 straight DNF’s, oh dear!

    2. Felipe Massa – Awful display of car control into turn 3 on lap 1. Spins at the apex causing a calamity. No real fightback through the field despite being in a far superior car.

    3. Adrian Sutil – A truly uninspiring race only shattered by his inability to avoid Mark Webber’s Red Bull on the restart, which of course would catch fire leading to a comical display of Firetruckmanship. And yes, that’s in the dictionary.

    4. Pastor Maldonado – Despite a good start and a bit of fortune at T3, began losing places faster than he could lap the track and at one point, lost a scarcely believable 4 places at one corner. Truly terrible driving.

    5. Fernando Alonso – Must be included on the basis that he started 5th, and despite Rosberg falling away and Hamilton at one point lapping in the 1m50′s, finished only 6th. Passed by Raikkonen and left the door open twice for Hamilton when it looked like he had got the overtake done. Needed a strong weekend and disappointed.

    I look forward to the voting. Choose your WDOTD wisely.

    1. Dave C says:

      You forgot to add Perez, Vergne and Hamilton to the list but in your list yes Di Resta is looking awful lately I like the driver but end seems nigh for his F1 career unless a couple of podiums and top 5 qualis in the next few races, yes unlikely.

    2. Kevin says:

      Hmm. I’m not going to vote for Suttil cos I’m a biased Aussie. In all seriousness Massa is just not cutting it and hasn’t for a while. So WDOTD is Massa

    3. Michael Grievson says:

      It’s a shame you weren’t driving. You obviously would have done better

      1. Rayz says:

        Lighten up mate. It was just done for a laugh. Or did you fail to recognize that?

    4. Scuderia McLaren says:

      Broadly agree with your list…

      My WDOTD is Paul Di Resta. His actual performance combined with his blame of a ‘edgy car’.

      In fact he’s probably my worst driver of the last two years. Maldonado is a close second, but that win in Spain and his pure pace on occasion just edges Di Resta.

      I think after three years, Di Resta has had a chance to truly beat his team mates and shine. He’s done neither. He’s IMHO not done enough to deserve a seat in a solid midfield team next year. Enough is enough.

      He ain’t no Hulkenberg or even a Perez. The only seat I’d be happy for him to take is maybe Chiltons at Marussia. Or Van Der Guards (spelling?) at Caterham.

  48. Joe says:

    Hulkenberg. Then Raikkonen.

    If you’re bringing back actual polls, then why not actually put them on this site instead of another? Like last year instead of having something ridiculous like an external site where the poll is bizarrely closed after have only been open for a few hours at most.

  49. Thread the Needle says:

    Kimi

    1. urmomspie says:

      Oh you people, the only answer you know is Kimi right?
      Hulk/Vettel for me.

      1. Thread the Needle says:

        Well I always knew how good the hulk is, so yesterday was no surprise to me, he should’ve got a top drive a long time ago

        I’m not really a kimi fan, but that move on grosjean was class, so he gets my vote

        Don’t think I need to mention how good vettel is

  50. Andy says:

    Hulkenberg, drove well, withstood a lot of pressure and didn’t make mistakes.

  51. Chris says:

    I would have watched this race if..
    a) I was televised on BBC as all F1 races should be.
    b) There was not his stupid tyre issue going on – bring back longer wearing tyres – F1 is about Driver and Car championship – so why should tyres, which are the same for everybody, ruin it ?

  52. Jonathan Powell says:

    Nico Hulkenberg was definitely driver of the day,great drive from him and just a shame to hear about how his height and weight effects his chances of a top drive next year as he definitely deserves a top drive!

    By contrast its not fun watching Paul Di Resta struggle at the moment.This was the season when he needed to outperform Sutil and put himself in contention for a top drive like Hulkenberg is doing but instead has gone backwards through making too many mistakes!

    1. Tyres says:

      Seems to me like he had a bad race or 2 and has got into his mindest that he either desperately needs to have a spectacular race or has started to doubt himself.I havent seen any interviews or anything so this is just going off his drives but seems hes in a mental rut at the moment.

    2. Clarks4WheelDrift says:

      Seems to me it’s all with the unstable and poor Force India car after the mid-season tyre change.

      He now needs to forget points, forget McLaren and just focus on Sutil only, who he owned in the first part of the season before the Pirelli tyre change farce.

      It has come at a very bad time for him and has gone backwards, just not backwards like Sutil did into Webber.

  53. Dean says:

    Putting Hamilton up as a contender for driver of the day after he lost out to Grosjean (without DRS), was destroying his tyres the worst of the whole grid, was unable to get past Hulkenberg and afterwards cried not only about Vettels car advantage, but also saubers car advantage, is the travesty of the week. Add to that his prima donna comments that hes too good to be in P5 and only James Allen would be blinkered enough to put Hamilton in a driver of the day contest. For the sake of it ive even left out the fact his teammate Rosberg had to make a 22 second stationary pitstop and still finished 2,5 seconds behind Hamilton.

    But if we must, Hulkenberg with a drive squeezing out such prima donna comments from Hamilton was priceless.

    1. Dave C says:

      Couldn’t ageee more +1000!

      I really don’t know who Alonso and Hamilton think they are, they lucked into a few unbeatable cars whilst main challengers at the time didn’t have a decent car and all of a sudden think they are above everyone, too much hype and not enough results, Vettel and Hulkenberg would beat these 2 in the same car and also the likes of Raikkonen, Button and Rosberg are a match for them, 2 best drivers that deserves to be fighting at the front by default? Yeah right! I do wonder where these 2 will be when the likes of Bianchi, Hulkenberg and Grosjean reach their peak and of course Vettel carrying on dominating.

    2. KRB says:

      On lap 30 Ham was 54.156 sec’s behind Vettel, Rosberg was 70.410s behind.

      By lap 33, Ham was 4.657s behind Vettel, and Rosberg 9.046s back.

      I wonder how they made up so much time in 3 laps?!?

      Context people, context.

      So in reality, Rosberg made up 1.9 sec’s on Hamilton over the last 22 laps. Amazing!

    3. Scuderia McLaren says:

      +1

      Spot on. Hamilton’s comments are seriously damaging to himself. He has such an air of entitlement.

      Give JA a break though… He’s almost always pretty fair and spot on, but placing Hamilton in the list had be raise an eyebrow. His start was poor, his pace was poor, his tyre management was poor, his inability to reclaim positions was poor and ultimately this comments were just lacked class.

      1. Tealeaf says:

        +1000

      2. Tim says:

        If I was cynical (which to be fair I am) I suspect JA places LH on a list of drivers of the day to get the comments going. There must surely be some correlation between payment from sponsors and comments made – no criticism implied by that, just commenting on the commercial reality of running this site – which I think is excellent.

      3. jooon says:

        I made a comment about that Hamilton destroys tires a couple of races ago. Got so many angry reaplays I gave up.
        Rigthly after a pit stop sector 2 he allways sets a purpule sector time. Not really optimal if you want the tires to last.

      4. Richard says:

        All that statement reveals is how little you know about how F1 cars work.

      5. Scuderia McLaren says:

        Oh hi Lewis. How you going?

        Oh yeah, you should have got it done at Turn1. You’d have done it in 2007-08.

        Maybe less time recording music more time karting between GP’s for overtaking practice.

      6. Richard says:

        That holes getting deeper. The difference between drivers is miniscule, but the difference between cars and how they interact with the tyres is a chasm far beyond the effect any driver can have. Open your eyes!

      7. Scuderia McLaren says:

        Sage advice my friend. Opening ones eyes that is… You are going to need to cope with others expressing their feelings of your favourite driver having done a poor job in a race. If you read the comments, you’ll find that a few (understatement) agree.

        Or…

        You can keep up the ad hom attacks, make yourself look super intelligent and not a fanboi at all. (sarcasm).

    4. Tim says:

      As a LH fan there is very little about your post that I would disagree with. The only observation I have is that, although, NR did indeed finish 2.5 seconds behind LH this was because of the safety car and nothing to do with NR skill.

    5. unF1nnished business says:

      Agreed. Had Rosberg not had his nose drop off coupled with a 22 sec. pitstop, he would have finished ahead of Lewis. He was quicker on Sunday.

  54. Toni says:

    The Hulk, no question :)
    Nice to see a mignon mixing it with the establishment ;) (not withstanding what sauber acomplished last year… this year they have been mostly mid/end of the grid).

    He was might, and showed real talent and maturity. The way he didn’t defend from Ham cause he knew he could fight back was very good (try reading his reasoning on the maneuver). I always think its real amazing when a driver fights real close and still manages to think things through :)

  55. Geenimetsuri says:

    Driver of the Day – Hulkenberg
    Mastermind of the Day – Räikkönen
    Driver of the Weekend – Vettel

    So for DotD, it’s the Hulk.

  56. Kevin says:

    Lotus would have to be MAD not to sign Mr Hulkenburg ASAP!

    1. Kirk says:

      Agree, if you have two drivers, one Massa and the other Hulkenberg… I wouldn’t think too much about it, also Hulkenberg could be cheaper than Massa, hope next days we see in this page “Hulkenberg will be next year Lotus driver”

  57. fox says:

    Hulk. Interesting how Hulk could do earlier in the season…
    If it’s a car (both Saubers were close on start grid), then Hulk did not much. But if he got inspired by Lotus seat, then he did very well.
    It was funny for Sauber to qualify better than MacLaren. Perez made switch to faster car but got slower.

  58. Truth or Lies says:

    Nico Hulkenburg for sure, but its hard to fault Vettel either, what more could he have done?

  59. Racyboy says:

    Hulkenberg.
    Sauber would be crazy to lose him and Lotus would be just as crazy not to snap him up.

  60. anthony says:

    Kimi.

  61. rossco says:

    Rosberg also had 2 safety cars to bring him back in. Your comments are a little deluded there.

    these tyres are all wrong. Go back to the days of rubber that was fast and could last… Soft, supersoft, medium, hard. For one its confusing to fans who are learning the sport and f1 shouldn’t be about the best drivers in the world “managing” tyres. It should be about raw speed. Who is the fastest package. Not if some track temps suit lotus or Mercedes or red bull. Its just frustrating to see for someone who hasn’t missed a race for 15 years.

  62. aclasschris says:

    Hulkenberg, without question…

  63. Marybeth says:

    James, Great picture of Kimi & his little friend. :)

  64. Andrewinwork says:

    I think Merc should provide LH with a couple of minders because every time he’s out on the track he seems to get mugged by someone

    1. L.B says:

      Then why couldn’t Alonso get past? Hamilton bashing is excessive. Any unbiased fan would account for car setup and perhaps ask why Mercedes keep going ultra downforce when they become sitting ducks on the straights. Vettel at Spa and Hulk/Gro in Korea

  65. BRad says:

    Webber was definitely on for a podium driving smart and very quick, lapping faster than most during that 2nd stint. Then the jus jus came back to trick him up again . Mark really needs to see a spirit witch doctor to banish his bad luck. But a great race with lots of O/T moves. Kimi gets my DOD !

  66. Horoldo says:

    Hulk, and great drive from RIC.
    Held his spot in the top 10 till his brakes failed.

  67. kbcusa says:

    No question about it. Nico Hulkenberg

  68. luqa says:

    Huelkenberg, by far. Ferrari is going to regret not signing him!

    With some Russian money, hopefully Sauber can build a decent 2014 car and retain him. It would be a win-win. Unfortunately the so called “top” teams are blind to this young lad’s obvious talents. Mclaren, Lotus are you listening??

  69. absolude says:

    How true, sadly.

  70. dean cassady says:

    It is a toss for me, three ways:
    Kimi
    Hulk
    Grosjean
    I have Kimi first because he drove an attacking race, while the Hulk drove defense.
    If Grosjean had not made the mistake that the greatest attacker of the day could get through, then he would have been my driver of the day, solo, for everything, but especially getting by Lewis. Grosjean got by Lewis! In the first lap!
    Hey, if you’ve been doubting him, you have to take notice of a move of that magnitude, Lewis; he’s not all that easy to pass, and the Merc is pretty good, off the lights.
    Good job Grosjean.
    Hulk, I hope you partner Kimi next year; you’ll have your work cut out for you!
    Kimi, hoping Allison and co. come up with a competitive machine; so all that’s is needed is the best driver.

  71. Random 79 says:

    One thing about the Hulk I don’t get:

    He’s having trouble finding a drive because of his height and weight. His height is always going to be a problem – nothing you can really do about that – but his weight shouldn’t be.

    The teams build the cars light, but have to meet a minimum weight. That means that to bring the weight up to the minimum they use ballast, which (I think) they can place pretty much anywhere on the car, but naturally they place it as low as possible in the car to reduce the centre of gravity.

    So all the cars and drivers should end up weighing the same anyway.

    The problem is that for a driver like Hulk more weight means less ballast, but because the weight is in the drivers torso that means it’s higher – which is bad – and can’t be optimised.

    So why not have a rule in the regulations that says that if a car requires ballast to bring it up to the minimum weight it must be placed higher in the car, somewhere close to the driver?

    Then in theory all the drivers should get the same deal, and talented drivers like Hulkenberg should have a fair chance at getting a better drive.

    1. Random 79 says:

      PS.

      Disclaimer: That might have been slightly off-topic…sorry :)

      1. Pete says:

        Unless you are measuring height and weight in $$$ I think you have the wrong idea about why teams don’t hire him.

        Hulk refuses to bring $ and teams have their reasons

        Red bull needs to justify toro rosso. Ferrari only hire “proven” winners. Macca needs $ from Perez and whitmarsh and button have a bromance. Lotus also needs $. Merc has Hamilton. Who else?

      2. Random 79 says:

        Yep money is always a factor – I wouldn’t dispute that – but it has been stated that Hulk’s size is also problem.

        My main point is that a driver with the talent he seems to have shouldn’t be denied a drive just because he weighs a little more than the average F1 driver.

        Hopefully he finds a good seat for next year. He might not bring $$$ to a team initially, but if he scores good points with a decent car and helps a team move up the order than that’s going to mean more $$$ at the end of the day anyway.

        Best of luck to him :)

    2. Tim says:

      Your suggestions regarding the way in which ballast could/should be distributed in the car, are very sensible. Sadly, the folk that would need to agree on this are anything but sensible. Their own self interest will always prevail. It’s really quite ridiculous that the teams have a say in the regulations, they should simply be presented with the rules/regulations and invited to participate.
      It won’t happen in the foreseeable though.
      Hey ho :-)

      1. Random 79 says:

        @Tim

        I really, really wish I could say you were wrong about that…but you’re not.

        Cheers anyway :)

  72. John S says:

    Hulkenberg for sure, please give him a good car I welcome more competition to my favorite driver Vettel.

  73. C Lin says:

    Hulkenberg, Raikkonen a close second.

    Hopefully he will replace Raikkonen at Lotus.

  74. Hiten says:

    DOTD for me is Hulk!!

  75. ACx says:

    Else where I have said Kimi because of the 9th to 2nd thing. But thinking about it, we don’t naturally expect that from Hulk. So, he was , er, extending himself, where as Kimi was doing the usual Kimi thing which we all know about. We know how brilliant Kimi is.

    So, yeah, Hulk is possibly a good call. And yes, it is about damn time Hulk got a decent car. Shame RBR didn’t have the balls to challenge Vettel.

  76. JC says:

    I’m liking GRO more and more, impressive pace today keepin VET honest. HUL, fantastic race at 110% as he said…
    Kimi always a brilliant drive in the race, but lackin the qualy speed to have a fighting chance for P1.
    My DOTD, as a “special recognition” for a great drive goes to HUL

    PS: VET again unstoppable… Good to have new regs to spice up the field !

  77. Matthew Hull says:

    Agree with the top 4 contenders, but can’t agree with Hamilton.

    Webber would have been a definite contender. I’d still put him above Hamilton even with the tyre puncture, love tap from Sutil (how did Sutil even lose control there??), and DNF.

    In the end though, I would have nominated Massa instead of Hamilton. He came from the back of the pack to 9th, in the same car that Alonso only managed 6th…

    DOTD definitely Hulkenberg.

    1. Yak says:

      Massa put himself at the back of the pack with a stupid first lap lunge, nearly taking out his team mate in the process. Short of winning the race from the back, there’s not much from there that’d qualify him for a “DotD”.

  78. Dave Aston says:

    H U L K .

  79. Dan says:

    hulk. no one else was close. was good to see him drive away from the too teams.

  80. Harshad says:

    I may sound a bit Stupid, but I couldn’t vote!
    That link keeps asking me for login credentials!

    1. Random 79 says:

      No idea why that is, but I admit I didn’t even notice the link; I just skipped straight to the comments.

      Unfortunately by the time I read your comment and had a look the poll was closed (with a massive win for Hulk, as I expected. Well done Nico :) ).

      Cheers for giving us the option James – I’ll definitely give it a go next time :)

    2. Harshad says:

      Ok the poll is closed thanks!

  81. Red says:

    Hulkenberg really drove brilliantly and calmly to defend the charging from Alonso and then Lewis. The way he got away from turn 1, into turn 2 and then took off on the 2nd straight is really amazing. Never put a foot wrong. That really made his race.

    The way Lewis attacked Hulkenberg and then defended from Alonso is really breath-taking. All of them are really 1st class.

    1. Random 79 says:

      +1

      What really surprised me was when Lewis finally got past, Nico got him straight back even before he had the DRS open.

      Massive speed in that Sauber. It was probably just the setup / track combination, but I really, really hope it’s a sign of things to come :)

      1. dren says:

        The Sauber has improved, but you could see the speed advantage it had on the straights. Hamilton was all over the back of him, would get beside him and start to pass but then the Sauber would pull away. It was down to set-up and the ability of Hulk to keep the car on the track through the twisty stuff. That and the Mercedes was set up more for the twisty stuff and less for the straights. Just the wrong car for a Mercedes to get behind.

        Had Hamilton passed and stayed in front after the straights, he would have pulled away quickly.

  82. Rudy says:

    Das Hukenberg!

  83. Magnus says:

    How do I wote?
    I can only see the result!

  84. quest says:

    I have a question. Why do the regulations specify a minimum weight for car+driver? Why not a minimum weight for the car alone?

    1. Tim says:

      That would make things even worse for the bigger/heavier driver. Because the engines, power units, or whatever they call them, are heavier next year the teams are fretting about making the minimum weight. This means a bigger driver is a disadvantage.

  85. I know says:

    “Nico Hulkenberg was mighty in the Sauber, punching above his weight.”

    I see what you’ve done there… It would be a shame if he couldn’t get into a competitive car next season. Maybe another year in a Sauber, until the other teams manage to shed a few pounds of battery and engine weight again?

  86. GRLap says:

    Clearly DOTD, and year, is Sergey Sirotkin because Sauber is kicking Hulkenberg out of the car in order to make room for the awesome Sergey.

  87. Richard says:

    I think we can discount Vettel straight away as his car is so superior to anything else it would be difficult for him not to win notwithstanding a component failure. there is a basic problem these days in that we are not really seeing the drivers expertise, but rather seeing how good the car is. How well balanced it is and how well it interacts with the tyres, beyond that it is about the aerodynamica of the car, firstly how aero efficient it is (how slippery), and how much downforce it produces whilst minimising drag. Frankly the driver input is the least of it when their are so many variables to optimise. I’m afraid it is a topsy turvy formula which is created on the drawing board rather than at the steering wheel which is a bit sad. If I had to pick a driver then it would probably be Nico Hulkenburg for his excellent defence against Lewis Hamilton with that battle being the most interesting scenerio of the race.

    1. GRLap says:

      You mean like mark webber.

      1. Richard says:

        Yes well there is far more to Vettel’s dominance over Webber than Red Bull will probably admit to, but basically the exhaust driven defuser with stabilised rear end suits Vettel far more than Webber. I also think there is more to Webber’s bad luck with clutch’s and other componentry than is apparent.

    2. Aaron Noronha says:

      Richard not to burst your bubble but F1 has always been exactly what you feared. The best car/driver combination always wins unless reliability strikes

      1. Richard says:

        Well as cars don’t drive themselves then that’s obviously the case, but you missed the point. Now it is a contest within a contest within a contest such that it is not Vettel doing the business necessarily, but Newey’s design team finding and optimising the solutions to these problems better than other teams. As I said driver input is diminished or made irrelevant because of it. It was far fairer with durable tyres with looser back ends, and frankly more exciting to watch. Most of the drivers, except of course Vettel, are pissed off with the current state of the formula that Ecclestone and co have created. Next year with the exhaust exit being moved to the top away from the difuser perhaps it may be different.

  88. Denis 68 says:

    Easy

    Saint Sebastian

    1. Richard says:

      Shouldn’t that be Saint Adrian!!!!!!!!

  89. ciao says:

    Webber respected Hulkenberg’s defensive ability enough not to attack the train (because he thought nothing was going to happen except maybe Lewis getting frustrated and doing something stupid (which to give him credit as the better driver than he used to be – he didn’t do). That says something. It wouldn’t have been any different if it was Button or Alonso or Massa in that tall geared car though. They are all great defensive drivers.

  90. anon says:

    Vettel was flawless. I’ll give him driver of the weekend. Give Hulkenberg driver of the day for keeping a faster Ferrari behind him for 50 laps.

    So much for Alonso’s race craft…

    Couldn’t pass a Sauber…

    1. Clarks4WheelDrift says:

      He’d have a better shot in Korea driving “somebody else’s car” … like Guittierez’s.

      1. anon says:

        Ferrari was quicker than the Sauber. Hulkenberg beat Alonso with superior race craft.

  91. Vin S says:

    Kimi attacked and nailed:-
    - a Future RedBull driver
    - his Future Teamate at Ferrari
    - his soon to be ex-mate at Lotus

    & finished right behind his friend & closest rival…, who both then took a private jet from Korea to Japan with some babes and a few drinks to celebrate.

    Kimi Raikkonen is Easily the Man of the Year 2013. Hulk, lets give him driver of the day :-)

    1. Ali says:

      you nailed it mate.

    2. Clarks4WheelDrift says:

      If only he could qualify a bit better in that fast black and gold car, then he wouldn’t need the safety cars to help get him to second place in Singapore and Korea.

      Can’t wait to see Alonso V Kimi next year though.

      1. Kirk says:

        The safety car condition is equal to everyone, he was third before the safety car, some luck yes, but generally you have to seek your own luck.

    3. Racer89 says:

      That was great :D

      1. nusratolla says:

        I am a die hard Kimi Fan and I’m sadden to see Kimi Leave Lotus…. He is giving us the Senna era at JPS Lotus feel… Sad to see it part….

        He seems rather depressed at Ferrari in 2008 and 2009….. So, it was disturbing to find him there again…. Wish he could’ve stayed at Lotus… For without Kimi I see Lotus heading into the Twilight.

  92. Nick_F1 says:

    It’s clear – Nico H.

    Btw: another Niko R. was much faster than Lewis this time. It looks like Niko is more better with tyres than Lewis. When tyre is not a problem – there Lewis is faster.

  93. Clarks4WheelDrift says:

    Driver of the day, quite a few contenders…

    Rosberg for driving a fireworks car the mechanics can’t put a nose on.

    Pastor Maldy for letting 4 cars pass him in two corners without taking himself out.

    Di Resta (wall) and Sutil (backward driver) for getting in a Force India car that used to be good and now is so bad it tries to take them out every chance it gets.

    Seb for not hitting the FIAs Korean 4×4 on it’s school run.

    Alonso for pretending the Ferrari is still a front runner and not a mid-field dog as Massa does, plus for telling Hembrey how it is after qually.

    Grosjean for his first lap overtake and just about containing a Seb style whinge that he was faster than Kimi at the end, – get him out of the way!

    Kimi for fooling everyone into thinking he is so slow in qualifying, again, that he sneaks through with the safety cars to 2nd.

    Lewis for not chewing his front left, rear left and rear right tyres. For realising his tyres were shot and losing 5s per lap so he pitted. Erm, no scratch that one.

    Massa for showing that the mirrors are fine while driving backwards and avoiding his teammate.

    Perez for not ‘punching Hemberey’s lights out’ after he implied the delamination is Sergios fault for locking up.

    Hulk for borrowing Sebs traction control to wind up Lewis.

    Webber for trying to put out his barbecue that got out of control, despite not needing his barbecue next year.

    ;)

    Car of the day is the new race fast, Q3 making, Sauber-Ferrari. Luca di Monty should paint it red and give it to Alonso and Massa.

    1. James Hunt says:

      Haha, love it :)

    2. nusratolla says:

      HAHAHAHA AMAZING :D

  94. Ali says:

    James, irrelevant here, but as as thought. Could Adrian Newey be heading to McLaren. i have a feeling he would. McLaren Honda and the regulations to come next year could be the challenges, Adrian cant resist

    1. Aaron Noronha says:

      It would most likely be Ross Brawn, But if Mclaren could scoop Adrian, Alonso would jump ship in an instant.

  95. Marc says:

    Without a doubt Nico Hulkenberg excellent driver skill and race craft for goodness sake some team higher up the grid should give him a go Perez out Hulkenberg in or into the lotus seat

  96. yst_01 says:

    For me it is clear. DOTD: Fernando Alonso. What he gets out of this little red bobbycar is sooo impressive. How he passed Hulkenberg yesterday, just WOOOW!, or Petrov in Abu Dhabi 2010 oder Maldonado in Barcelona in 2012 or Maldonado in Singapore 2012, just AMAZING.

    He really is the best.

    So the ranking for KoreanGP is:
    1. Alonso, 2. Hulkenberg, 3. Kimi, 4. Vettel

    1. Yago says:

      WOOW! Only three drivers did manage to keep Alonso behind when he is on attack mode? Absolutely AMAZING! That statistic just shows what an absolute cannibal Alonso is!

      1. Aaron Noronha says:

        Dont disturb his Alonso Fantasy, he’s about to have multiple orgasms right now :P

  97. dren says:

    Vettel for driver of the weekend, once again he spanked the field.

    As for driver of the day, Kimi. A great drive and a good pass on his teammate to end up second. Only if he would have qualified better…

    Hulkenburg drove a good race, but the straight line speed of the Sauber made it hard for anyone to pass.

  98. kevin green says:

    Something undoubtably debatabe to add here so here goes! With the Redbull/vettel success undoubtably (in my eyes) being down to Adrian newey and it now coming across as a bit of a Shumacher style boredom fest which i feel will effect the Redbull brand on that basis would Redbull not be better (to preserve there brand value/respect) not be better shipping out there drivers every 2-3yrs max and bringing in other drivers as there’s easily at least 6 other drivers on the grid that would do as well if not better than Vettel, thus also if anything strengthening the Redbull commercial image as they are still winning pretty much as much???

    1. Me says:

      Aw… you want your driver to win?

      1. Kevin Green says:

        Who pointed at anything than a deterant away from a Schumacher type borefest???

  99. alanf1 says:

    DOTD without any question Hulk.

    A reality check for Lewis, there are many better than him, apparently…

    Seb, sensational as always, the man-machine in F1, perfection at work. Who does not see greatness watching this guy will miss the joy for years.

  100. Richard says:

    Can’t tell, stayed in my bed for very obvious reasons.

  101. Martin Fry says:

    Hulk easy

  102. Zombie says:

    Hulkenberg ofcourse, followed by Grosjean and Alonso. Its a shame Rosberg had problems with his nose, else he could’ve sneaked into the top 3 ( pun intended ! ).

    James, any news on the Williams line up next year ? They are now permanent backmarkers and it must be awfully difficule to judge a drivers pace when the car is such a dog. Maldonado seems to have a lot of raw pace, and Bottas has shown maturity. Can one be certain that both will be retained for next year ? Thanks.

  103. nusratolla says:

    Hulkenberg.

    If anyone thinks otherwise is a shame.

    Wonderful drive…. brilliantly aspiring.

  104. Elie says:

    Very Easily Kimi Raikkonen DOTD again ! He started 9th and finished 2nd. He passed Alonso, Hamilton, Ricciardo, Button, Perez and Grosjean along the way. The last one was brilliant and he managed to keep him behind him on older tyres. This is the smartest driver in F1. Lotus is not a P1 car so what he does is ensure he gives 100% to set up for Race day. He always says he must do better blah, blah- but he’s not silly he’s worked out the right balance between quali and race- sure he’s not been great at quali more than once but he always makes for up for it.Very rarely do you ever get the feeling the car could have finished higher on Sunday- except for strategy calls by the team but he is always there on the podium and finished ahead occasionally like Hungary when every fool is bagging him for his Sat performance. It’s not lost to me that he was the fastest qualifier on earth with diff regs and he’s not lost that much pace to be that far away on Sat without a car reason to do so. He was and I’m happy to say after Korea- still is the best racer Ive seen since he entered F1.

    Hulkenberg started 7th and finished 4th. Sauber I think have “done a Red Bull” with traction and there top speed was brilliant and they had the advantage over Merc in both depts. brilliant drive by Nico Hulkenberg- people must remember – he’s driving for his f1 career now- as he doesn’t have a contract and his critical mass is making it difficult for him. He had to excel and Im happy he succeeded. He passed Hamilton and then defended brilliantly for the whole race. Great job Nico !! and if I were team principal these are the two I have wanted in my team for some time.

    1. Martin says:

      Next year will be an interesting comparison at Ferrari. The professional commentators are expecting Alonso to come out on top. Certainly Kimi has been very good at making things happen, but a fast car is race conditions and excellent tyre usage opens a lot of options strategically.

      His being the fastest driver in say 2005 has to be considered in the context that McLaren designed a very aggressive car. It blew many engines due to the cooling being constrained to aid aero performance. He’s an excellent driver, but a couple of seasons being faster than Coulthard and Montoya isn’t a strong claim to being the quickest out there and his adaptability is an issue that potentially constrains car development.

      His tyre management is better than Hamilton’s, but in wheel-to-wheel decision making, Hamilton for me still the best in the field. Vettel has been excellent in recent years at passing, but that has often been about exploiting performance – we’ve rarely seen him defend. A few of the passes you mention were through undercuts rather than on track. Perez and Grosjean made errors. Ricciardo was in a Toro Rosso trying to conserve tyres.

      1. Elie says:

        Martin everyone I mentioned Was passed on track ! Maybe not Button .Some of them were passed on the undercut again ! (Hamilton, Alonso, Hulkenberg). This is the problem people watch races but don’t really pay attention to what’s going on.

        Montoya was the real deal, as was Massa before his accident- he was in career best form. People are still talking up Grosjean (I don’t know why) – and he’s decimated him. You forget car failures in 2003 left him only 16pts away from Michael Schumacher in 2003 title fight. 2004 Mac was crap. 2005- he Was a dead ringer (only a few pts) for Alonsos title were it not for several car failures !!. Next year will be a very tough challenge- but Kimi won’t disappoint either.

        Your argument on car development is very, very wrong. Lotus is living proof– just ask James Allison. Why do you think Ferrari have re-signed him- this is the single biggest reason along with Allison- the experience and ability to get a car exactly where it should be – Never Doubt this !. If your suggesting he needs the car a certain way – I won’t argue with that- but which top driver doesn’t – why do you think Seb is king at the moment- because he has exactly what he wants and the best resources in the world to do it!!. My hope is that Ferrari really pay close attention to the specifics of what he needs. Kimi has played with more categories of cars and bikes than most people and he has a natural gift for feeling exactly what’s needed in a car. After two years out and different tyres and DRS, to contend with – he was immediately on it from the first turn of the wheel to challenging Seb at Bahrain only 4 races later. I’m still astonished at how often people miss things with Kimi – and I was never wrong when I said he would be on the podium several times in his first year with 1 or 2 wins (Bahrain dammit)…

      2. Elie says:

        Btw- Kimi would not ask someone how to get passed someone – he would just do it.. And unlike Seb, Lewis and even Fernando he rarely touches anyone!— unless of course THEY go into him. Lewis is more aggressive wheel to wheel but he often makes mistakes.

      3. Martin says:

        Hi Elie,

        You write with the passion of a fan. However, it does you no favours to suggest what I or others remember.

        Apart from knowing how to win, success is pretty irrelevant in judging ability. That Raikkonen won several times in 2005 and not at all in 2006 tells us nothing about his driving. Alonso + Renault were the best package in those two seasons. Not often the fastest, but generally more reliable when it mattered. That result doesn’t tell me anything about what will happen in 2014.

        On car development, you are getting defensive and reading things I didn’t write. If a driver can understeering or oversteering car then that allows the development engineers greater freedom and the race engineers job easier. In Kimi’s case this only seems to be relevant for qualifying at the moment. But if next year’s Ferrari is relatively quick in qualifying but slower in the race, like the Mercedes has been, then grid positions are vital and making the driver happy is a key part of that process.

      4. Elie says:

        Without passion we are hollow.. Without the truth we are nothing.

  105. jay harte says:

    easily NICO HULKENBERG ,by a mile in a fact .
    if some top team owner doesnt sign this guy up soon for a perfomance like this, its a bloody disgrace.

  106. Bernard says:

    I think the most telling quote was from Alan Permane about the pass on Romain:

    “Kimi got lucky, but Kimi puts himself in a position to make the use of that luck. So good for him as well,”

    It’s part of his racecraft. Don’t give him an inch, don’t make a mistake in front of him and expect him not to pounce.

    Nico was equally inch perfect on Sunday afternoon when he needed to be.

    Circumstances forced one to be attacking; the other defending. How do you decide one driver was better than the other? I thought both performances stellar.

    1. KARTRACE says:

      The secret in Nico’s “defense” was that actually he was defending much, but racing. In that act alone he could maintain his own rhythm which otherwise would be affected and he would falter. Congrats, I always new that he is a proper racer. Now pls. one decent seat for the fella in 2014.

  107. Andrew Carter says:

    Hulk, but there was some very good drives today.

  108. Benalf says:

    DOTD: Hulk
    Not because the finished high up but for his mental toughness over a loooong time during the race. The Sauber car was a nice surprise (that comes and goes season after season) but the fact that Nico drove error-free knowing that the big guns were behind him gives extra credit. congrats!

  109. Luis says:

    Seb: another superb, remarkless drive leading to another Grand Chelem.

  110. zx6dude says:

    Nico Hulkenberg – I hope he gets a decent drive next year he desserves it!

  111. jjpm says:

    Methinks everyone’s fooled by FOM and FIA! These two give to TV feed parts they’ve chosen and edited from the radio comm between stands and drivers, to spice up their after-show and excite fans of all birds!
    But not much to do with truth!
    They create lengthy debate after the race because of them extracts!

    in any case

    DOTD Grosjean

    for this reason :
    Gap average between Vettel & Grosjean on 42 of the 55 (in/out laps pits & SC laps omitted) :

    average :4.154s
    greatest : 6.481 lap 53
    smallest : 2.108 lap 1

    on lap 30 before 1st SC :
    Grosjean 5.411 behind Vettel
    Raikkonen 51.835 behind Vettel

    I don’t remember a driver having performed so regularly and so well behind Vettel in a GP this season.

  112. Richard says:

    I have the inkling of an idea that 2014 will be Pirelli’s final year, because there may be rather more tyre incidents related to the higher torque producing engines. If that proves to be the case, and Michelin step in with durable tyres in 2015 it will prove to be the biggest upset in the last five years.

  113. BurgerF1 says:

    I pick DOTD based on who appears to punch above their weight during the race – regardless of how they ended up on the starting grid.

    Vettel started P1 and given his car advantage as well as his supreme driving, he merely achieved what he should have. The two SC’s weren’t enough of a hindrance to really force him into having to do anything special. That’s not to say he isn’t driving impeccably though. It just isn’t giving me the goose bumpys.

    Alonso was purely average today. Massa didn’t finish that far behind him – oh no wait. He did finish that far behind. I guess Massa is just “driving for himself” now. Anyway Alonso made a sloppy pass on Hamilton that Hamilton immediately got back when Alonso opened the door. Not the hard racing we’re used to seeing from him. I was actually surprised he wasn’t referred to the stewards for repeatedly going wide at (I think) T6 almost every lap. It was T6 wasn’t it? He was fully off the track almost every time we saw him through there. He never gained a position doing it, but surely it gave him an advantage to keep others behind. Oh well, he’s mortal after all. And the Ferrari is red poo.

    Webber could have achieved the accolade had he finished P2 (a minimum given the RB car advantage). He was moving up the grid strongly and marched past Alonso when he cooked his bull. Aussie barbie indeed. He might have even caught the Lotuses which would’ve been fun to see.

    Grosjean is pretty close to DOTD. If he’d kept Kimi behind him I think he’d have been a real contender for DOTD. He was hurt by the SC’s but regardless, it was his mistake that allowed Kimi past, and he made an ill-timed lunge at Kimi during said pass which looked a bit amateur. His whining over the radio didn’t help, but they all whine on the radio so I won’t count that against him this time. This time. Well, ok, I will count it against him.

    Hamilton and Rosberg. Meh. Their team let them both down. Kimi must’ve accidently punched Nico’s car in the nose instead of punching Perez. That was a weird front wing failure. Meanwhile Hamilton was swearing at his team giving what I thought were pretty clear instructions that he was driving on spoons and should probably come in for a tire change (and strategy change too presumably). In the resulting team meltdown they brought them in in completely the wrong order and killed both their races. The pain of a slow stop for Rosberg was nicely added to the pain of watching Hamilton continue for another lap on the Pirelli spoons. Perhaps the team can eat humble pie with those. At least the mistake with Hamilton gave us something to watch at the end as he hunted down Hulkenberg. EPIC TEAM FAIL.

    Kimi benefitted mightily from the SC’s. But he and his strategists made great use of them too, undercutting the opposition. He drove in that measured, assured way right up until that Hail Mary down the inside of Grosjean which was mega. Very, very close to DOTD. But not quite….

    Ah Hulkenberg. In a Sauber. A team which is almost bankrupt but for a few spare rubles not being spent on Sochi. Ferrari engine (I know, Alonso, I KNOW!) Same tires as everyone else. But a Red Bullish aero update and a stellar, gritty, strategic drive. The radio messages we heard from him were calm, collected and totally in focus. Punching above his weight? I think so. Zis ist de DOTD ja? JA!

    Bring on Japan.

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