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Who was your driver of the day in Malaysia?
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Posted By: James Allen  |  30 Mar 2014   |  2:04 pm GMT  |  367 comments

A dominant win for Lewis Hamilton, 25 seconds ahead of the next non-Mercedes car, as the Silver Arrows pressed home their competitive advantage in Sepang.

There were some strong performances up and down the field, once again, but who stood out for you? Who was your Driver of the Day?


Lewis Hamilton

Took pole on Saturday in wet conditions and controlled the race from the start. Pulled out a second a lap on the opposition in the opening stint to get a 10 second margin and then protected that to the end. His first Malaysia GP win and the first 1-2 for Mercedes of the modern era.


Nico Rosberg

Started third on the grid, but jumped Vettel with another stellar start. Had to cope with tyre wear issues at the rear in the early stages and was forced to push hard to keep Vettel behind him to the finish. Extended his world championship lead to 18 points. He can afford to follow Hamilton home in Bahrain and Spain and still lead the drivers’ standings.


Sebastian Vettel

Second on the grid in the difficult conditions of Saturday, he lost a place at the start, but pressured Rosberg and was a threat to the German for most of the race. His first podium of the year, but he trails Rosberg by 28 points at this early stage.


Fernando Alonso

Despite not really featuring at the very front, Alonso is still third in the drivers’ standings, with 24 points after a stronger weekend for Ferrari netted another 4th place. The Spaniard was mighty in qualifying after the collision with Kvyat he managed to get 4th on the grid and in his race long battle with Hulkenberg he used strategy and guile to come out on top.


Nico Hulkenberg
Another stunning performance from the young German punching above his weight in the Force India. Once again he battled with Fernando Alonso for fifth place, which once again become fourth due to problems for Dan Ricciardo. He lost out again, but he’s racing a Force India against a Ferrari and with every race his reputation is enhanced with every outing.

Other contenders
Jenson Button again made up places after qualifying 10th, finishing 6th for McLaren; rookie Daniil Kvyat scored points for the second race in succession for Toro Rosso; Felipe Massa and Valterri Bottas battled for Williams and there will be some frostiness after the Brazilian refused a team order to yield the position.

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367 Comments
  1. Digbert says:

    Lewis, by a mile, no other driver came so close to perfection.

    Hulk did well, as did Seb, Rozzer too, but the difference in speed to his teammate was ominous, especially as Lewis is the best driver at qualifying, day in day out.

    1. I know says:

      The cars are still too unstable to know how much of Hamilton’s advantage was due to his superior driving, or due to his car. That’s not to say his driving wasn’t superb on Sunday. Based on both Sunday and Saturday, when rain levelled the playing field and Hamilton still came out on top, he would be my driver of the weekend, followed by Vettel.

    2. Rufus Matthews says:

      For sure Hamilton drove a good race and was comfortably quicker than Rosberg.

      On the subject of qualifying I think Vettel actually did the best lap. Although he was 2nd the BBC’s side by side lap comparison showed that before the final sector Vettel was quicker. After the final sector which included the long back straight Hamilton came out on top. I think the superior straight line speed helped changed the result. I think last season it would have been a Vettel pole.

      As for the driver of the day I would say that Hulkenberg was the man who outperformed his car and used a different strategy to get a good result.

  2. Arshadhusain Sheliya says:

    Nico always manages to squeeze in the leading pack, alwayssss

    boy’s not interested in battling with middle order

  3. Anil Parmar says:

    The top 5 were all very strong but my vote goes to Hulkenberg, who almost snatched 4th. No matter the car, no matter the conditions…he will always be close.

    Great drives from Kvyat and Kobayashi too.

    1. Chris G says:

      Well said, to often the little guys are ignored (how often does JA mention caterham in his round ups) when they can provided inspired drives

  4. VV says:

    Hamilton was excellent, but I’d go for Massa for telling Williams where to put their ridiculous team orders.

    1. Lawrence says:

      Given the chance I would have voted Massa as well if only as a vote for racing. If what the team said is true he held off a faster car all the way to the end without blocking.

      As for the Ham, How hard is it to be “perfect” in the clearly dominant car. He had only to race his teammate.

      1. zx6dude says:

        and he managed to beat him by 20 seconds! 20 seconds whilst pacing himself to look after the car

      2. Tommy G says:

        Well said!

      3. stger says:

        if you have said the same thing about Vettel last year – respect. If not you are just another deluded fanboy.

      4. Lawrence says:

        Still not my drive of the day which was the question after all.

    2. Kramgp says:

      I voted for hulk but good point about Massa. I think bottas will get the better of him before the end of the season but let racers race

  5. Gaz Boy says:

    Hulky. Yet again, he out-performed the potential of his car – always a good sign. Yes, he’s got a Merc V6 powering his rear axle, but so has Jenson, Kevin, Vatty and Felipe (Sergio didn’t start so doesn’t count) – and he finished ahead of all them.
    Why the Big 4 teams haven’t signed him up by now I’ll never know. Yes, I know he’s a tall lad, but it’s not as if he’s Montoya, I mean, Nico is a greyhound, not an ounce of fat on him. And with the weight limit being raised next year, the drivers bulk (sic) won’t be such an issue. Also, if he has handicapped by weight then it certainly isn’t showing.
    Well done Hulky, a classy performance.
    Also, well done Lewis, mature and refined performance, Daniel drove well until Bull butchered his chances (again!), and also Jenson and Fernando dragged a reluctant car to a decent spoonful of points.
    On a different note, but of a dull processional race though. I wish it had rained now!

  6. AuraF1 says:

    Surely Massa for getting his self respect back after that stupidly worded team order from Williams.

    Other than that it was pretty dull.

  7. seifenkistler says:

    Nico Hulkenberg
    Another stunning performance from the young German punching above his weight in the Force India….

    Isn’t he already in another weight class anyway? ;)

    Wonder where he would be in a better car and a few pico-gramm lighter in body mass.

    Another honorable mention to Bernd Mailänder, mainly at saturday. He was the one who gave the fans what they missed this year: a good sounding engine.

  8. Andy says:

    Hamilton for me, he made it look easy. Hulkenberg comes a very close second.

  9. Dmitry says:

    Hamilton for me.

    Because I am a fan and because he brought 17 seconds to Rosberg… in the same car.

    Can’t wait for Bahrain!

  10. littleredkelpie says:

    Am in Milan, Italy as I watch the race…. the overwhelming highlight is unquestionably the aural relief that comes with hearing “Ricciardo” pronounced correctly. All English commentators deliberately mis-pronounce his name through what is either thinly veiled racism, laziness, or ignorance – none of which is acceptable for a professional commentator of an international event.
    Ricciardo’s acceptance of the slight speaks volumes for his easy-going demeanour, but, doesn’t change the fact that it is simply rude.

    1. Paul Jarman says:

      Martin Brundel made a point of asking the man himself how it’s pronounced and as he’s not Italian he said It’s the aussie way with no I in the middle

      1. littleredkelpie says:

        As an ex-Australian I am fully aware of their ignorance.

      2. C63 says:

        It’s a bit presumptuous to be telling someone how they should pronounce their own name isn’t it?
        Ricciardo definitely said to Brundle to pronounce his name without the second i – what more can the commentators do?

    2. michael grig says:

      slow down LITTLERED……
      how did it come out for NAPOLI ??? NAPLES !!
      (and this is the spelling)

      now back to the article…
      how does it look to win with the best car of the field?!?
      event-less !!!

      1. littleredkelpie says:

        precisely, it’s different spelling.

    3. GWD says:

      From recollection, Fernando’s Race Engineer added another pronounciation to Daniel’s name in Australia in a message to Fernando during the race. Quite frankly if Daniel has ‘set the record straight’, then that’s other peoples problem if they aren’t going to follow his clarification.

    4. Kay says:

      “doubt” is pronounced without the “b”, plus many other examples.

      Just a language and cultural difference, not lazy. Chill!

      1. littleredkelpie says:

        Wow .. that’s exceptional. You have made my week. :)

  11. Philip Iszatt says:

    Surely Vettel will be disqualified for using too much fule?

  12. JAWA hs-f1 says:

    I voted for Hamilton as his victory was quite convincing. He had the measure of Rosberg in both Q3 and in the race virtually every lap, he was faster than his team-mate (which surprised me to be honest as I was expecting it to be a close contest).

    I did consider Vettel as his qualifying performance was stellar and even after loosing at the start, he came back and overtook his team-mate on track. Apart from final stint, stayed in touch with the second Mercedes.

    Hulkenberg executed his strategy brilliantly but I get a feeling the final finishing positions could have been different if both Ricciardo and Raikkonen had a clean race.

    1. JAWA hs-f1 says:

      Almost 24 hours till my comment was posted and the comment is still awaiting moderation????

      I haven’t posted anything objectionable I believe.
      I’m left wondering that such delay has now even defeated the purpose of posting in the first place.

      1. Gaz Boy says:

        Perhaps James website team has switched to that new Renault V6 turbo moderating system, when they have gone with the new Mercedes V6 turbo moderating system!

  13. Lele says:

    Lewis, by far.
    He wrung the neck of the Merc while saving fuel and tyres as he and the team pleased.
    And he gave Rosberg an average of 3 and a bit tenth per lap on identical machinery, with Nico admitting to Lewis’ better speed on the day, based on which we may assume Nico wasn’t slower due to some gremlin.
    So much for Lewis’ critics on how he would not be able to handle all the new variables in a race compared to the “smarter” team mate.

  14. Alexander Supertramp says:

    Has to be between Hamilton and Hulkenberg. Stand out performances.

    Btw, the spent fuel percentage overview is a great addition to broadcasting.

  15. Sebee says:

    Surely it can’t be Lewis with that easy perfect lights to flag win he had to do nothing up there but enjoy the clean air. And as history proves such perfection is never rewarded with DOTD.

    Clearly Vettel is the DOTD offering up the only challenge to the dominant Mercedes without having the best car, and earning a podium while at it.

    :-)

    1. Sebee says:

      Turns out you CAN be DOTD by winning from pole in a clean display of domination. Go figure!

  16. Anne says:

    Lewis mostly because during Q3 he showed how amazing he is. In the race itself he didn´t need to do much.Rosberg showed a cool head under pressure. Vettel for being a warrior out there. Alonso and Hulkenber because they went head to head in these 2 races.

    1. Grant H says:

      Agree Lewis dominated, managed fuel and tyres better than the rest, hope this can start to put to bed common misconception that Lewis is too agressive

      Also must say how mature Rosberg was in front of media, in response to his lack of pace he was honest saying Lewis had upper hand, a lot of drivers tend to blame balance or something else

    2. Tad says:

      I was like Ham or Hul, it has to be one of them. Wishe nico got a sit on one of the top team.

    3. Quercus says:

      Yep. Both Lewis and Nico now know exactly how much they have in hand. It will come in very handy in future races. Neither of them have been pushed yet.

      If one or other of them doesn’t become WDC this year they should both give up—as should Mercedes. We all know which of them is likely to come out on top and I don’t think Nico will feel bad about it. I guess he knows better than most how good Lewis is, as they’ve been competing against one another since they were kids.

      1. hal says:

        Reliability is still an issue for them as evidenced in Australia (I guess reliability could be a problem for other teams as well).
        Also, judging by the past four years it would be foolish to write off Red Bull and Vettel yet. Hamilton is my favourite driver (I don’t like to say fan because a lot of fans do not appreciate other great drivers) and all I hope for is reliability this year and no ill fortune. 2012 without pit-wall errors, reliability and bad luck could have (I say could) seen a different champion than Vettel. However, I just want to add I am not taking anything away from Vettel that year. He did what he needed to.

  17. warley says:

    It was not a very exciting race so my driver of the day is Felipe Massa for ignoring a blatant insult from his own team who are clearly lacking in management skills! They certainly come up with a more diplomatic form of words.

    1. Pete says:

      Sorry couldn’t hear well watching at the bar…what incident?

    2. Alexander Supertramp says:

      This is Formula 1. It’s fierce, competitive, cut throat! Felipe was not fast enough/aggressive enough. Williams’ poor choice of words does not make him DotD!

      1. Jean-Christophe says:

        I agree with that

      2. warley says:

        Fair point Alexander, but some of us do not take F1 entirely seriously so we may choose our DotD for somewhat ironic reasons rather than outright performance! Had Williams told Massa to select a different mapping “to save the engine” I expect he would have complied. What they said or at least the part that was broadcast was, after Massa’s trauma at Ferrari, the equivalent to telling him that his mother is ugly and was hardly likely to promote cooperation. The Williams deputy t/p certainly seemed to be smiling with clenched teeth in the interview with Ted Kravitz – Ted won my Journalist of the Day award for that!

      3. Kay says:

        Several ways of looking at it (not necessary my views):

        1. Team’s priority goes before drivers;

        2. Even so, team should’ve chosen better words to phrase it considering Massa’s unhappy past with team orders. Using the words they did were almost taking the mickey;

        3. If Bottas really had that much more performance than Massa, he could’ve overtaken Massa without the need for team orders.

        Personally tho, I stick with point 3, and the team should’ve just let them race and trust they don’t crash each other out.

    3. Olivier says:

      Massa finally stood up for himself!

      As for Bo77as. He would’ve used up his tyre advantage by chasing down Button … Massa did the right thing.

      1. Jean-Christophe says:

        You don’t know that. It’s all speculation. Williams say that they would have asked Bottas to relinquish his position had he not managed to pass Button. I’ve got no reasons not to believe them. It made sense for the team to let Bottas have a go

      2. UAN says:

        lol. With 3 or 4 laps to go they’d tell Bottas to relinquish his position? BOT would be “fighting” up to the last corner.

        Williams should have just told that to Felipe, “we want to give BOT a shot Button”.

        I remember Felipe ignored a Ferrari order to let Alonso pass in Japan last year. Alonso then passed Massa with DRS making the point moot.

        In this race, VET used DRS early to get pass RIC (lap 3 iirc).

        If BOT was really that much faster, he should have been able to get pass MAS on his own. When you need to have the team move the driver in front out of your way, then you are not really faster, or at least not fast enough to hunt down a driver that your teammate is struggling to pass.

        And it’s not like BOT was on a different strategy, his tires were only 2 laps newer than MAS.

        Williams got greedy in the short term, wanting to try for 1 extra place (wow, they would have gotten 6th and 8th instead of 7th and 8th). Is that worth the drama of team orders in the second race of the season?

        My respect for them went down just a bit.

      3. Kay says:

        Exactly my thoughts @ UAN.

    4. Bruno says:

      I agree, Massa has now proved hes a renewed person! He did the right thing by the way!

      1. Mansell Mania says:

        He could have at least tried to get a bit closer to Button though – he wasn’t making a lot of effort to get past him was he. Bottas was on fresh tyres at the end.

      2. Kay says:

        Wasn’t like he didn’t try! At one point he was mighty close, only for Button to hold on to his line and defended well, until the point when Bottas caught up and Massa had to defend his position instead of attacking, which obviously takes lap times away and lose space to the car in front.

      3. Vlad says:

        Everyone should just ignore team orders now? Well, there was not a serious reason to do it at that stage of the grand prix. About 30 laps earlier might have been different. But if everyone ignores them, will teams really sack anyone? Don’t think so.

        Not a great race. “Turn your engine down” = it’s too easy. What can Renault do to improve from here? Is it even possible?

    5. Mhilgtx says:

      How many of those that feel that way were blasting Seb last year??????

      1. Kay says:

        Seems like you’re talking things the way they suit you.

        Last year, the Multi-21 was an agreement that Webber gets to stay out in front had they past a certain point in the race, and that the other must follow home. Vettel didn’t respect that agreement and thus lost love from the fans.

        With Massa, we all know he played 2nd fiddle to his team mates for all his years at Ferrari, always had to sacrifice himself for the sake of his teammate’s WDC. He’s helped enough and had enough of that. The way the matter was handled at Malaysia (how words were phrased, the need for team orders at this point of the year, etc) is not the same as what happened last year between Vettel and Webber.

    6. Flying_Scotsman says:

      Agreed.
      Maybe this will make them think twice before issuing such instructions in future.

    7. Darrin from Canada says:

      My thinking exactly. Unbelievably poor choice of words from Williams. I guess when you have good drivers, a good car, and new sponsors it gets harder to shoot yourself in the foot. Congrats Claire… you found a way.

    8. Dante says:

      +1. Massa for not answering (I couldn’t believe my ears when I heard his race engineer) and not complying.

  18. Paige says:

    No question it’s Hamilton. He took Rosberg’s game and went pro with it today. It was a brutally, devastatingly efficient ass whooping that he doled out today: to his teammate, and to the rest of the field.

    1. Malcolm says:

      + 1

      Paige….Lewis’s dominating performance today showed clearly that he is not only fast, but also when it comes to tire and fuel management he’s just as cerebral as Nico.

    2. JF says:

      Much like Vettel in a top car.

      1. Fernando "150%" Alonso says:

        +1 :))

      2. Jane Kay says:

        Hamilton had a very Vet-like race – qualified on pole, built a gap a cruised to victory. All this in the best car on the grid. I am wondering if and when people start saying that Hamilton wins only because of the car and the same stuff they said when Vet was winning races. don’t get me wrong, I like Ham and think he is a great driver, a bit unlucky at times. But at the moment it looks like RBR/Vet scenario for Merc/Ham.

        Driver of the Day:
        Massa for “I can’t hear you. Team-what?”
        Hulk for keeping his promise not to finish lower than 7 :)
        Vettel for taking a fight to Roseberg

      3. Kay says:

        Hamilton not showing the finger made the difference.

    3. Gil Dogon says:

      Yes, Hamilton had a perfect GP weekend, I could only say that his performance was Vetteleseqe.

    4. Birgitt MB says:

      +1. Lewis was mighty today.

    5. Mansell Mania says:

      Thank goodness Lewis finally, still in his prime, gets to have a go at an F1 season in which the tyres don’t turn to Jelly after 4 laps and he can finally attack all through the race. Let’s pray for some reliability so he gets a good run at the WDC this time round.

    6. Durabilt says:

      Lewis totally did the business. He had better tyre and fuel management and still left Nico in the dust. Also, his performance in Q3 with a car that’s probably a handful in the wet was brilliant. Well done sir

      1. Richard says:

        Agreed. Although probably all the others cars are a handful in the wet too, possibly even worse than his! ;)

  19. Grant H says:

    Comment of the weekend Massa “bottas is faster than you” ….haha de ja vu?!!

    1. Sebee says:

      Massa: “Who the hell do they think I am? A carpet to be walked all over?”

      1. Gudien says:

        Yeah!!!!! Best post on this site!

    2. binhost says:

      He did what he should’ve done in 2010.

      1. Alexander Supertramp says:

        Picked up the pace? You must mean something else..

      2. Kay says:

        Ferrari would’ve gotten their lawyers on the radio (remember MSC v BAR 2003 Austria?).

        At Ferrari, Massa couldn’t stand up for himself.

  20. Christos Pallis says:

    As much as Hamilton did a fantastic job Hulkenberg is just too good not to be in a top 4 team. Ferrari, Redbull, Mercedes & McLaren pay attention.

    1. Alexander Supertramp says:

      Ferrari could just happen for Hulk next year..

      1. Joe S says:

        Ferrari is definitely a team to avoid, they may get a few wins a year but they can’t keep up with development.

        Though really, it could be said that any team who isn’t Red Bull should be avoided as Red Bull are the only team that you could rely on to be consistently winning over recent years.

      2. Alexander Supertramp says:

        Not sure Ferrari will win this year.. 2013 they were pretty good when the field was pretty level. 2012 they were among the best in the wet, which gave Alonso a win in Sepang and the basis for his win in Germany. But this year? Average but as always seemingly bulletproof. So they can win if others have technical problems- which is not impossible considering the ones in front are Mercedes and RB.

    2. FerrariFan says:

      hopefully next year in a ferrari

    3. Blade Runner says:

      Is he just too tall? Is that why he has been passed over so many times now it seems? He has the talent, why is he not in a top team James?? Any insight

      1. Kay says:

        Weight, which can cost a couple of tenths per lap. You can probably find one or two articles from JA website on this.

    4. Tornillo Amarillo says:

      Yes HAMILTON. And HULK was great as well.

      HAMILTON was the best driver in the best car with the best engine and with the best crew in the pit-stops.
      I think he was just cruising and not showing the best of the car, just in case a safety car was deployed and needing to burn more fuel and tyres than others, and because a rain was also posible and he needed to preserve tyres at the end.

      1. Aaron says:

        Hamilton was definitely cruising. Right at the end he did a Vettel and popped in the fastest lap 1.5 seconds faster than anyone else. If that’s how much the Mercedes has in hand over the rest then I can’t see how anyone will catch them up this year.

    5. Durabilt says:

      Agreed. He should be in the other Ferrari. Kimi’s goose is cooked!

      1. Elie says:

        We will see whose goose is cooked by mid season

    6. Darrin from Canada says:

      Current Team standings

      01 Mercedes 68
      02 McLaren-Mercedes 43
      03 Ferrari 30
      04 Williams-Mercedes 20
      05 Force India-Mercedes 19
      06 Red Bull Racing-Renault 15

      You were saying?…
      Maybe Vettel should move to one of the top teams too. ;)

    7. Peppers says:

      Just on “The Hulk”….

      I heard someone some years ago suggesting a minimum driver/seat weight so that bigger drivers wouldn’t be such a disadvantage for the team. Is this an option that is being considered?

      1. Alexander Supertramp says:

        Great idea. The FIA should end this indirect discrimination against “bigger” drivers.

      2. zx6dude says:

        +1 it is silly to have most of the drivers saying that they have had to loose weight and to have bigger drivers disadvantaged.

    8. M_E says:

      +1

      hamilton was good and all but hulkenberg plodded away to bring it home in a high position with one less stop too, and I think a good scrap with raik iirc? clearly the FI is very kind on its tyres and with the merc PU he delivered a great result

  21. AeroEracer says:

    Massa – for holding off a car faster than him ;)

    What the heck was Williams thinking? No team orders used to be part of the fabric of the team.

    1. Alexander Supertramp says:

      I think you look at it the wrong way. There’s a huge difference between a team order where a faster car is not allowed to pass his slower team mate. No one is receiving preferential treatment! I understand the choice of words was poor, but Felipe placed himself above the team today and that’s always a no go.

      1. kenneth chapman says:

        if bottas had a faster car then he should’ve been able to pass massa without any favors. i’m all for massa in this case. well done. team orders at this stage of the season is stupid. as for the instruction? demeaning and a put down. not very clever.

      2. Wheels says:

        Agreed! Massa never closed the door on Botta’s, seeming, passing moves…. Botta, simply, could not out-brake his Teammate. So how was Valteri ever gonna catch Button?

      3. GWD says:

        And the question should be asked: If Bottas could not easily pick off an apparently slower, and now completely ticked-off Massa, what chance had Bottas against Button? (Sorry, Wheels’ post above is essentially the same question :) )

    2. TheLollipopMan says:

      Yes, Massa is Driver of the Day for ignoring Williams’ pointless team order. How would Bottas get past a problematic McLaren if he couldn’t even pass his problematic teammate? What a joke. Let them race!

      1. MrF1 says:

        May I remind you ALL that Bottas was told not to attack Massa at the start of the race when Massa was behind Magnassun.. and he complied

      2. Richard says:

        Yep – after hitting Massa to begin with.

      3. TheLollipopMan says:

        Bottas needs to learn, like Massa eventually did, that nice guys finish last. Ruthlessness rules in competitive sport. Massa was right to stand against a dumb team call like that. Bring back Patrick Head!

    3. cartweel says:

      I didn’t see it that way- after the team orders Massa wasn’t blocking or defending from what I could see on the TV coverage. From that perspective if Bottas had such a faster car, why didn’t he get by Massa? I didn’t even see an attack- unless I missed it.

      1. Kay says:

        Agree with you.

        That also brings up another point: why do drivers need permissions from the pitwall to attack someone or let someone by anyway? They are race drivers, not taxi drivers being told what to do and where to go.

        Totally absurd.

  22. Sinnr says:

    Great job by Lewis and the whole Mercedes team today. This win should shut up those that believe Lewis can’t control himself and only knows how to drive flat out. Today he showed that he is not only a fast driver, but also a thinking driver as well.

    1. Fan says:

      What did he have to think about? How far back to turn his engine to avoid embarrasing the field? The Merc is a beast of a car and its clear from the radio transmissions that they still have pace in hand. Pit Wall: “Nico terribly sorry to interrupt your Sunday drive if its not a bother would you mind increasing the gap to 5 seconds? After that we will conserve fuel and the engine.” Nico: “Are you sure 5 seconds all you need? I can probably lap the field?” Pit Wall: “No 5 seconds its fine, but if you want to have a little fun 6 would be okay.”

      Kudos to HAM for the win, no matter how strong the car is the driver still has to deliver, but lets not overstate it. There are still a lot of unanswered question about HAMs ranking as one of the top drivers. If he goes on the win this season after being nowhere in the hunt for the past several seasons one has to ask the same questions of him that are regularly asked about VET? Can he do it without a dominant car?

      1. Ed Bone says:

        No unanswered questions about Lewis.

        When Lewis joined Mercedes, he was joining a mid-ranking team, (amidst a hail of the usual criticism, not least on here.)

        Mercedes is now a top team.

        Alonso joined Ferrari, as a top team.

        Ferrari are now a mid-ranking team.

      2. quattro says:

        Yeah? Yet ALO has been kicking HAMs a55 on the final standings for the last 4 years. Analyse that!

      3. Richard says:

        Quattro is quite right, here – albeit a bit tongue-in-cheek!

        Hamilton consistently shows that his championship is effected by his own errors.
        He has had some misfortune, true, but on balance I think all competitors over a certain period experience similar failures, punctures, etc. He’s an awesome and very skilled driver, no doubt, but he is prone to errors in judgment which affects his races.

        I would argue (and the Championship results prove) that Alonso has the measure of Hamilton in that regard.

      4. Elie says:

        Analyse this Quattro- Hamilton beat Alonso as Rookie in The same team and same car.

      5. Ed Bone says:

        Richard:-

        All drivers make errors. Hamilton is not unique in this respect. He is impetuous at times but so is Vettel, Alonso, and so was Schumacher (hope he recovers btw).

        It is also worth noting that Alonso has been the number one driver, with preferential status at Ferrari, whereas Lewis has never had that status in any team.

        It’s amazing to me that James Allen and other media commentators still to this day accuse Hamilton of lacking brains and only possessing raw speed.

        Complete rubbish, always has been.

      6. James Allen says:

        I never said HAM lacks brains.

        Where have I said that?

      7. Niko says:

        Ha ha! Thats funny. But to be honest not true. Rosberg send on an interview after the race, he would drive back to the pits, get out and ask his engineers to show him how can he increase the gap. So I guess at that moment it was all he could do.

      8. KRB says:

        He already did it without a dominant car. 2008 is the last time a driver has won the title in a non-WCC car. Others to accomplish that are Prost, Schumi, Piquet … questionable drivers. :-)

      9. Ian says:

        And 2009

      10. Ian says:

        Forget 2009 misunderstood you comment mate

      11. Richard says:

        True, but Kovy was quite rubbish.

      12. Kay says:

        in a non-rubbish teammate year of 2007, Hamilton had still beaten Alonso.

      13. Rossco says:

        In modern F1, no driver can win the championship without a dominant or at least strong car. It’s the way it is. Doesn’t make the driver any less of an impressive driver.

      14. Anthony says:

        Alonso very nearly did in 2012

      15. Gazza says:

        A dominant car is one that wins the World Constructors Championship as well.
        When was the last time a WDC was won in a car that didn’t win the WCC.?
        Oh yes that would be Hamilton in 2008.
        Been there done that.

      16. Paul D says:

        To be fair that was only because Heikki was garbage.

      17. KRB says:

        @Paul D, was Keke Rosberg garbage in 1986 as Prost’s teammate when Prost won in a McLaren against the mighty Williams cars? It was 72-22 for Prost over Rosberg.

        In 2008 it was 98-53 for Hamilton over Heikki in 2008. In 2008 Ferrari beat McLaren 13-3 in fastest laps (when races were sprints in each stint), 19-13 in podiums, 541-325 in laps led, and 8-6 in wins. Only in pole positions was it even (8-8), of course Hamilton’s speed the major factor making that possible.

        One would think if Hamilton had the best car, and Heikki was just struggling with it, that Hamilton would still lead the most laps. But it was MAS 363 – HAM 294 – RAI 178.

        Let’s just say that Red Bull fared better stats-wise in 2009 vis-a-vis Brawn, than McLaren did vis-a-vis Ferrari in 2008, including four 1-2′s. McLaren had zero 1-2′s in 2008, vs. Ferrari’s 3.

      18. Poyta says:

        If its such a beast of car then why wasn’t Nico able to pull away from Vettel with ease?
        No doubt about it the Merc is the fastest car out there but I think its dominance is being blown overboard evident by how close Vettel was to Nico in the race and how close he was to Hamilton in qualifying.

      19. Jean-Christophe says:

        You seem to forget that Ham has already won in a non dominant car. A WDC and races. He’s produced stunning drives. One example is his spa win in the rain even though he was (wrongly) disqualified

      20. JF says:

        Make no mistake. Best car always wins, not always fastest car cause reliability plays a huge role as well. Quality of driver mainly determines gap to challengers and consistency of exploiting the car provided.

      21. Phil says:

        What a complete and utter load of tosh.

        Hamilton has repeatedly been in the hunt for drivers championships in spite of (unlike Vettel) not having the best car. He, like Alonso makes the difference.

        Right now, he AND Rosberg have the best car. And he is making good use of it.

        But at the end of the day, you still have to beat your teammate. And he did so in dominant style.

        So far this year he has outqualified Rosberg in both races, and has dominated him in the one race they both were able to finish.

        Red bull is sure to catch up, so Hamilton will have to make the most of this car advantage while he can. So far, he’s doing a pretty good job at that.

      22. Phil says:

        The reason questions are regularly asked re. Vettels ability is down to Red Bull’s unwillingness to have two number ones. Thus hanging on to Webber when it had been obvious for years that he wasn’t up to challenging him.

        And then this year they opted for Ricciardo instead of Raikonnen because again of concern over having two number ones.

        We’ll see if Ricciardo proves to end up causing problems for Vettel, but they certainly selected him because they thought they could manage the situation, and that he would not be a problem.

        Compare that to Lewis who has had two world championship teammates, and has beaten both, and beat Rosberg (who should not be underrated after beating Schumacher).

        Basically its the difference between a driver who has been coddled and not been put up against strong intrateam competition whilst in the dominant cart, versus a driver whose been up against the best and bettered all of them overall.

        And, yet, you say it is Lewis who has questions on his ability! mind boggling.

      23. Kay-gee says:

        Well put

      24. Andre says:

        What are you trying to say?

      25. Racingrot says:

        @Fan, there is a lot of unanswered questions about Lewis? You are confused mate..The lad is getting stronger and if not for machinery giving up on him, he would be very strong in this season..50/50 from first two races.

      26. M_E says:

        right on. one thing is clear though, rosberg is clearly the number two at mercedes and will have the same fate as webber with(out) red bull soon enough!

        solid driver who will do a solid job with occasional wow race, wc material he is not. way to wishy washy, no killer instinct in him consistently enough. like massa hes too ‘nice’

      27. audifan says:

        rosberg has a major advantage over ham at mercedes ..he is german
        the germanisation of the team is now virtually complete , brawn was pushed out as the team principal for that reason

        perhaps daimler benz felt they need to have a german team to justify the expenditure , no doubt brawn was allowed to sign ham only because he is the fastest driver and would give them the wins they needed

        but to give ham preference over rosberg ? no way

      28. Jake says:

        audifan,
        Brawn replaced by Paddy and Toto both well know Germans joined by Niki another famous German. I believe the engine plant site has been declared a German satellite state… :-)

      29. Kay-gee says:

        @ M_E,

        I disagree. Ros is a championship material, its just that he was unlucky to be paired with one of the best 5 champs of this century. Unlike Button, He proved to be almost as fast as Lewis.

  23. Clarks4WheelDrift says:

    Alonso for me but very disappointed in the Ferrari’s pace.

    Hulk was good too. Wonder what he could have done on a three stop? It’s also hard to see just how good the Force India Merc is just now when Perez doesn’t race.

    The most disappointing thing about the race for me was the live timing. It’s been mentioned before but this is the first time I’ve tried it.

    It’s gone from really good to useless. It’s an utter joke to take away functionality that people had last year on their laptops just for the sake of greed to try and get more people to buy a tablet and buy the F1 app!

    Gone is the sector times and some gap differences which were good for comparing cars, old vs new tyres, undercuts, car problems etc. The dots that tell you a car has gone through the sector timing beams are pathetic. Also gone is other info such as number of pitstops, useful when looking at the midfield or back to see where people pitting may come out against.

    Greed is bad in this case Bernie, sort it out. Fair enough adding new stuff to the app such as fuel used etc but not to take away stuff from laptop users. I’ll never buy the app when you do it this way.

    1. Kris says:

      Fully agree. I splashed out on the app this year, because they brought the price down, but the fact it causes my phone (iPhone 5) to heat up to the point I feel uncomfortable holding it and needs to be plugged in to ensure it lasts a race distance makes me regret having purchased it already.

      I can’t think of another sport that is less friendly to its fans than F1 – very limited footage online, stinginess with data and race statistics, high cost of attendance. I love watching the sport and am a fair way off abandoning it. At the same time, it’s difficult to argue its case to the unconverted.

    2. Gaz Boy says:

      Agree on both points about Hulky and Ferrari being slow.
      Having said that, I have posted comments on this forum before that the Prancing Horse is historically not good (I was going to say rubbish, but perhaps that’s too harsh) at rule changes: 2005 and 2009 spring to mind. Whatever the reasons for Ferrari being slow those seasons, the fact remains this: they were slow.
      And yet again, it seems the Italian Stallion has had it’s backside bitten by the British Bulldog teams under a new rules Formula.
      James Allison and the crew back at Maranello, lots of brain storming to be done. ASAP. Otherwise Ferrari’s Prancing Horse will be savaged by those British Bulldog teams.

      1. Racingrot says:

        Alonso needs a decent car. Ferrari has to build one for him. Come on, give the guy one to race to the step one or two of the podium please..

      2. Gaz Boy says:

        I actually agree – Fernando has the patience of a saint at the minute. My frustration is vented at the Prancing Horse, not Fernando!

      3. Jake says:

        Why does Alonso deserve a decent car more than any other driver?
        Hamilton took a massive gamble to get a seat in the Merc, maybe Alonso needs to look elsewhere.

      4. R. de Waal says:

        Ferrari has a history of being overtaken by events. They were one of the last teams to choose a rear engine. 1980 was a disastrous year because they preferred the wide 12 cylinder boxer to a much smaller turbo engine, compromising ground effect.

        In the 90s they were the last team to have a heavy v12, because they still thought a lot of hp was more important than aerodynamics.

        It’s ironic that, when engine power is most important, like in 2014, Ferrari is trailing again.

  24. JB says:

    I’m most impressed with Vettel today. Keeping himself ahead of everyone except the Mercedes.

    Both Hamilton and Rosberg shouldn’t even be in DOTD category because their cars are light years faster than everyone else. Hamilton was on ECO mode, saving fuel, throughout the race! Goes to show how much more performance is yet to be released in the Mercedes.

    DOTD = Vettel
    He is the only guy able to put himself in the Mercedes mix.

    1. marcio says:

      Totally agreed!! Hamilton and Rosberg didn’t do anything special today. The other guys behind them on the other hand did. I wonder if some people will get bored of the races, like they did last year when Vettel won most off the races.

    2. Alexander Supertramp says:

      I understand your logic. However, the only person to punch above his weight was Hulkenberg.

      1. Michael says:

        +1

      2. Mhilgtx says:

        I would have voted for Hulk had he gotten past Alonso.

      3. Gaz Boy says:

        Totally agree.
        He’s been punching above his weight for a few years now – and yet the Big 4 still overlook him!

      4. Juzh says:

        and you know this how? He’s got merc engine in that FI, so for me he didn’t punch anywhere.

      5. Alexander Supertramp says:

        Well he certainly did not have Williams’ pace and perhaps not Mclaren’s pace either. But he built his race on a great quali. Jenson ends on P6 because of a poor quali performance. Track position is still key and Hulkenberg-as very often- did everything to give himself the best chances. He punched above his weight..

      6. JB says:

        Ya. He did very well keeping Alonso honest.
        Not too sure if he is better than Vettel though since Force India is Mercedes powered. So his car is easily 20-30km/h faster than Red Bull.
        Just look at the top ten. They are dominated by Mercedes with 8 of them!

    3. Mocho_Pikuain says:

      “I’m most impressed with Vettel today. Keeping himself ahead of everyone except the Mercedes.”

      When you have the second fastest car and your mate has all kind of imaginable problems, if you don’t keep yourself ahead of everyone except the ones who drive the fastest car you aren’t doing a very nice job…
      Same goes for Fernando and Hulk, but at least they provided a good fight.

    4. TimW says:

      I agree that Rosberg shouldn’t be on the list as he got mullered by his team mate but surely Lewis is allowed?

    5. Racing Fan says:

      Another myth about Mercedes. That they are on ECO mode, saving fuel throughout the races. The sensors showed during the race that the fuel consumption by Mercedes cars was at the same average of Red Bull´s if you consider the difference between the two downforce configurations. At Albert Park, Mercedes entered the pits for the first tyre changes 2 laps after Red Bull. At Sepang, Mercedes had the same tyre degradation. That was another myth. Have you noticed that Red Bull and Ferrari have beaten all the other teams running Mercedes engines? And have you noticed that Rosberg´s car has lost a lot of power only after one race? Don´t forget that Malaysia was the first full race for Hamilton this season. The Mercedes advantage now is due to a trouble free pre season, but this advantage is slowing vanishing. We can´t ignore that the difference between Vettel and Rosberg was only 10s in a track with two long straighs.

      1. Alexander Supertramp says:

        Rosberg had an answer to everything Vettel did, he had more in the bag than he showed. But yes, odds are Merc’s advantage will erode at some point.

      2. JB says:

        Mercedes only need to stay ahead of others. Remember, they still need to save the pwr unit.

        Hamilton consistently use 2% less fuel than everyone else.

        http://www.f1fanatic.co.uk/2014/03/30/2014-malaysian-grand-prix-tyre-strategies-pit-stops/

        Vettel’s Pitstops were identical to the mercedes. It means both of them have the same level of tyre deg.
        There is nothing to indicate that Mercedes are inferior in downforce.
        Remember, more downforce = less tyre deg.

      3. radohc says:

        good point about the different engine age between Hamilton and Rosberg.
        It will be interesting to watch as this will develop.
        If this would have such a strong impact on races it it will mix the things really a lot in the season.

        However if you take this analogy to Williams – “Bottas is faster than you”, despite one extra race run…, so let’s see…

    6. KRB says:

      Well, the RB10 is clearly the 2nd best car, or at least has been at the first two races. So he basically drove the car to its natural finishing position. He did well, and he beat Ricciardo on the fuel-saving. Not sure it was DotD material.

      1. JB says:

        How do u know if Ricciardo was on fuel saving? It was only the first few laps into the races.

    7. audifan says:

      yep , vettel is obviously the top man , he equalled what his team mate did in the same car in the previous race
      oops , does that make sense ?

      1. JB says:

        Driver of the DAY.
        Not Driver of the YEAR…

    8. Robb says:

      Did you feel that easy wins weren’t deserving of DOTD when Vettel was getting them?

      Anyway, Lewis beat his teammate, who also had a clean and unimpeded race, by quite a large margin, many might see that as evidence of a superb drive.

      As any Vettel fan will tell you, just because one’s car was the best, doesn’t mean it wasn’t being driven exceedingly well.

      1. JB says:

        read those responses above. I’ve answered those things already.

      2. Alex Butters says:

        Agreed! I am much more of a Lewis fan than a Seb fan, but I do not understand why those who are saying how brilliant Lewis was yesterday seem to be the same people who criticised Seb’s wins in the past for being boring.

        Throughout the decades the vast majority of races have been boring. In the 60′s F1 didn’t get the TV coverage it does now, but if it had I wonder if fans would have said how boring Jim Clark & Lotus were for winning their processional races and booed him on the podium?

        If you want guaranteed action & excitement every race then F1 has never really provided it. There are many other forms of motorsport that do if you want it!

        I voted Hulkenburg – as I seem to every race recently. Good race from Lewis Alonso and Seb too though.

  25. Matthew Cheshire says:

    Riccardo beat Vettel at the start and Alonso after the first stops should have been fourth but helped into a DNF by his team. Hulk was the only other driver to exceed expectations.

    Good work by Massa with his “multi-don’t care”

    Handy quali and drive by Lewis.

    1. Jolgas says:

      “helped into a DNF by his team”

      Bit of déjà vu here. Are RB treating him as Webber already?

      That’s what happens when you get too close to Vettel.

    2. Mitchel says:

      ‘Multi-GTF’, perhaps?

    3. Durabilt says:

      I think Riccardo had already used the prime tyres so it would have been interesting to see him charging on light fuel and softer tyres for the last stint. I think Vettel will need to look out for this guy…

      1. Matthew Cheshire says:

        Vettel will be worried about his retirement plan to Ferrari too. Why take an unpopular German if his younger, marketable teammate is half Italian…

    4. bmg says:

      Agree, can’t understand why Ricciardo did not make the list.
      Was pushing his Teammate to the point that Vettel asked him to back off.
      Jump 2 world champs at the start, held off Alonso at the pitts when Alonso tried to jump him by stopping early.
      Got screwed by the team again.

  26. TGS says:

    Hamilton because he won and there was no other standout. Grosjean gets a mention for keeping a Ferrari at bay with a lemon.

  27. Txema says:

    Hulk. He has the worse car between the front drivers but manages to fight taking care of the tires

  28. marcio says:

    I voted for Hulkenberg. The Force India is the fifth quickest car on the grid and still he is able to finish in the top five.

  29. Carlos Rivera says:

    Massa. Nuff said…

  30. BW says:

    A race with no driving heroes, so it goes to HAM as start-to-flag leader.
    Special mention to BOT for climbing ten places and to GRO for defending RAI despite being low on downforce due to the damaged diffuser.

  31. Peter says:

    Vettel. Hamilton has won because he has the best car…

    1. quattro says:

      Haha, a good one. funny!
      But, VET with the 2nd fastest car finished 3rd. How does that make him the DOTD?

      1. TimW says:

        err, because if you have the second best car then 3rd is the best you can hope for?

  32. yellowbelly says:

    Got to be Hulkenberg, mixing it again with the big boys and putting a (relatively) minnow car where it shouldn’t really be. Not bad for a driver who is both too tall and too heavy (apparently).

  33. Nikita says:

    As for me, top-3 are Hülkenberg, Kobayashi and Hamilton.

    1. aveli says:

      correct names but the wrong way round.

    2. Kenneth M'Boy says:

      Is it just me or does the Caterham look like a hammerhead shark with Kamui behind the wheel? Was hoping he’d get a point.

  34. Glennb says:

    Massa. He has moved over for 2 WDC previously. He should not have to move over for a kid. Well done Felipe. He said he wasn’t gunna move over any more and he didn’t.

    1. Tornillo Amarillo says:

      MASSA will got some strategies in the future that will put BOTTAS ahead.

      Bad move for Felipe, as usual!

    2. Kay-gee says:

      Bottas will no longer obey team orders too and Massa will be in trouble just like Button was when Perez was around

      1. Kay says:

        Ah-ha but Perez got the boot and JB stayed.

  35. Ed Bone says:

    Clearly Lewis.

    But a word for Ricciardo. He is showing all the signs of being a future WDC winner, but sadly afflicted with No2 syndrome at Red Bull.

    1. Juzh says:

      he was slow and got overtaken. What no2 syndrome?

    2. Hamish says:

      Re Ricciardo. Completely agree. Add 30pts to his end of season tally and then judge his performance…

    3. BamBam says:

      etu Ed

      Have you ever seen a wheel fall of Vettel’s wagon

      The boys at RB need an uppercut

      The look after SV and always cock up car 2

      1. Rohind says:

        for your info, fastest pit stop record was set on Webber’s car

      2. quattro says:

        …and ALL four wheels stayed on the car after the stop? Really?

    4. Just a bloke says:

      +1 RIC

  36. Chris J says:

    Apart from the usual suspects……Max Chilton who has managed to finish every F1 race he’s entered and finished 15th today!!

    1. Racingrot says:

      You make me smile….

      1. Kay-gee says:

        Technically, I can finish all races too, buy just walking the circuit and mind you that I’m a very fat person weighing 13OKg….lol. My pitstops would take place at Mcdonald restaurant seat lol.

      2. Rich C says:

        Ok, JPM, be quiet now.

  37. SteveS says:

    Has to be Hulkenberg.

    How can all the people who refused to ever vote for Vettel “because his car is the best” now turn around and vote for Hamilton? Shameless.

    1. aveli says:

      because he did this in his first season and that wasn’t the car.

      http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=fzFDvZhntvQ

      1. Rohind says:

        Nobody is disputing that he’s a good driver, only the double-standards followed by some of the Hamilton fanboys and Hamilton himself, when Vettel was winning last year

      2. aveli says:

        vettel wasn’t just winning last year, he won for 4 years and won 13 races in a single season, with 9 wins in a row. hamilton won a single race in over 6 months. big difference!

      3. Kay says:

        +1
        and without crashing into Kimi, held the drift well and came out in one piece plus one place ahead.

    2. Ahmed Sydney says:

      100% Agree.
      What’s funny is that even in the past 4 years of Red Bulls championship domination, they never had such a dominant car, Mercedes is qualifying (in dry) with 1+ sec advantage, and race pace is 1+ sec advantage. Red Bull on average qualified 2-3 tenths ahead of rivals, and Vettel at times qualified on pole with a last ditch effort with 1 or 2 tenths in hand. Yes he often ran away and pulled away due to near perfect driving in clean air, however when they qualified further down, it proved that Red Bull did not have such a pace advantage over competitors.

      Well done to Mercedes, but this will be a very one sided championship. They have such a big margin, and can literally play with the field, increase the gap at will, turn down engine settings and still stroll to the finish line in a 1 2 formation, something that Red Bull could only manage a handful of times in 4 and a half years. Mercedes should have had two 1st & 2nd finishes, and will be the same again at Bahrain. The power advantage was clear at the starts, with Hamilton & Rosberg slingshotting ahead once they got traction. very ominous, the 2014 title is done and dusted and only Mercedes can lose it from here…

      1. Joost says:

        Ahmed, although I can understand your thinking pattern I must say I do not agree.

        In the past 4 years the actual gap was much higher than the 2-3 tenths you mention:

        1)If in 2013 Mercedes did not have the one-lap-wonder car they had (which was rubbish over long distance).

        2) Hamilton’s one lap performance (mclaren & mercedes). He was one of the few who could once in a while spoil the party for the bull’s.

        RedBull was set up for clean air driving I think. If he didn’t manage to get in to clean air really soon it would be difficult to overtake due to the overall setup of the car. Vettel was a king in making sure to come in to first position in the first lap. His aggressiveness was as if for him the race was to be won in the first corners.

      2. KRB says:

        How do you know that Merc is qualifying 1s ahead in the dry? We haven’t had a dry qualifying yet.

        I think you’ll find multiple occasions in 2010 and 2011 where the Red Bulls were qualifying 0.6s plus ahead of everyone else.

        You don’t lead for 205 straight laps (SIN12-IND12), or rack up Grand Chelems (VET has 4), or win 9 races in a row, WITHOUT a dominant car!!! It just can’t be done.

        Even if the Merc is dominant this year (it has been in the first 2 races, but the season is long people), there’s no way one of their drivers will win 9 in a row, just b/c the near-bulletproof reliability is not there, as it was at the end of the V8 era. There’s also the chance of grid penalties later in the season, moreso than in previous seasons.

        I can assure you that Merc would – if they could – give up a bit of their pace in return for the reliability seen in the last 4 years.

      3. Ahmed Sydney says:

        Sin 2012, Hamilton Pole 136

      4. Alex Sydney says:

        Sin 2012 Pole Hamilton 146.362, Maldonado 2nd 146.804
        India 2012 Vettel 125.283, Hamilton 3rd 125.544
        Just in case you were referring to 2013?
        Sin 2013 Vettel Pole 142.841, Rosberg 2nd 142.932

        The above proves that Red Bull never enjoyed such a massive advantage, even in 2011 and 2013 which were arguably their most dominating seasons.

        It is widely accepted that Merc has min 1 sec advantage in dry race pace and qualifying, all non biased experts including James Allen would acknowledge this. Only mixed conditions in quali has made it semi interesting.

      5. KRB says:

        Vettel’s consecutive laps led streak started in SIN 12 after Vettel inherited the lead from Hamilton’s retirement.

    3. Phil says:

      Because he dominated his teammate, and unlike Webber, Rosberg is no number two pushover.

      The problem people have with Vettel is more down to Redbull having a dominant car, and not being willing to put a driver in the second seat who could put pressure on him.

      Thus redbull’s decision not to hire Raikonnen, and instead to go with Ricciardo.

      Not saying that Ricciardo may not prove competitive at the end of the day, but they avoided choosing Raikonnen for fear of Vettel spitting out the dummy.

      Same reason as redbull nixed any chance of Hamilton joining them in prior years.

      When you have the dominant car, like redbull had, and continually decline to hire drivers who can put pressure on their driver, thats what annoys fans.

      Personally, I think that Vettel is a great driver, and would hold his own against Alonso, Hamilton on Raikonnen. (By that I mean be as good as, not better). But here’s the thing – they and *he* (Vettel) just wouldn’t risk it, would they?

      Thats what makes them chickens as far as I’m concerned. Hamilton, Alonso and Raikonnen would have no qualms about going up against each other.

      But Vettel and Redbull would. And thats why they do NOT deserve the same level of respect.

      1. Scott says:

        This is very silly. Why assume Ricciardo will not provide a challenge? Early indications are that he will. His race in Australia was impressive – best of the rest. And Webber wasn’t exactly shabby. And a final nail in the coffin of your argument comes courtesy of the examples you provided: who were the team mates of Hamilton, Alonso and Raikkonen when they won their respective world championships? Well, the answer is Kovalainen, Fisichella and perennial number 2 Massa. Hardly world beaters. So, your agument really doesn’t stand up. Why can’t you just say “I don’t like Red Bull and Vettel”?

      2. Phil says:

        Try reading what you are replying to.

        I already said that Ricciardo *may* prove at the end of the day to be competitive.

        The issue is that he was chosen because they didn’t think he would be a problem.

        Did I say that these people had always had always had competitive teammates? No, I did not. You present a straw man argument which is non-responsive to the point I made or worse disingenuous.

        Webber not shabby? I beg to differ.

        What happened when Hamilton had a teammate who similarly was unable to challenge him? (Kovalainen) Answer – mclaren fired him.

        What did red bull do? Kept him year in and year out till webber could no longer stand being a lapdog

        What did red bull do when they had the chance of hiring Hamilton? Said no thanks. Too woriried about upsetting vettel

        What did red bull do when they had the chance of hiring raikkonen? Said no thanks. Too worried about upsetting vettel.

        My point stands and you’ve done nothing to refute the above.

      3. Ahmed Sydney says:

        @Phil
        Webber convincingly beat all previous team mates including Heidfeld, Coulthard and Rosberg & was always regarded as a qualifying specialist. His race craft was also held in high regard with moves on Alonso in Eau Rouge Spa one of his highlights. He just happened to be soundly beaten by Vettel over 5 seasons, does that say more about Vettels abilities?

      4. aveli says:

        hamilton, in his rookie season took on alonso, the then youngest ever reigning back to back double world champion and made him look ordinary and drove on the edge with exceptional control of his car, never seen before in the sport. this makes him the best driver to have stepped foot in the sport.
        rosberg was teammate to the great 7 times world champion(best wishes) for 3 seasons and now rosberg is hamilton’s teammate. we saw how they performed against each other and i think we will find out how they compare against each other this season. if you are convinced of his ability, you will soon see further evidence.

      5. Rohind says:

        Think this from a business point of view.When you run a sister team solely for the purpose of developing younger drivers, why go for experienced and over paid drivers? They have already got one experienced driver in Vettel and they want to give their young drivers program a chance.Judging by what we have seen so far this season, Ricciardo is really good.

      6. Phil says:

        That’s actually a very fair and rational point.

        Personally, I differ though on how much that was a factor versus fear of rocking vettels boat.

        Also, this still begs the question of why they held onto webber for so long instead of promoting their drivers or bringing in other available drivers (e.g. Hamilton) if they didn’t think their second team drivers where up to it.

        This to me is evidence that they prefer having a number two who just picks up points but won’t challenge the #1 driver

      7. Rohind says:

        @ Phil. Hypothetically speaking, say this year Hamilton wins WDC beating Rosberg comprehensively and Merc wins WCC, wouldn’t they keep the same driver line up for next year also, instead of bringing in Alonso or Vettel, whose chemistry with the team is still an unknown parameter. I guess all teams’s goal would be to have best possible combination to win the WCC and drivers personal ambition is only next in the priority list.

        And the issue of Webber being sub-par only came into the fray last year, when Vettel was dominating him. If you remember correctly, he did mount a reasonable challenge in 2010 and 2012 and had the reputation of being a remarkable qualifier before Vettel.

    4. Rohind says:

      agree with you 100% on both accounts

    5. Robb says:

      The same reason some people who were voting for Vettel last year will refuse to vote for Lewis with his “too easy” win.

    6. KRB says:

      Conversely, how can all the people who voted Vettel DotD after races late last year, now turn around and refuse to vote for Hamilton? Shameless. ;-)

      1. GWD says:

        As Lewis Hamilton and Ali G have said… ;)

  38. trev says:

    Max Chilton.

    1. Gaz Boy says:

      Well, he does the bring the car home………he must have amazing mechanical sympathy!

  39. jack says:

    Massa … for finally sticking up for himself!

  40. JSpeed says:

    Felipe Massa – Started 13th and finished 7th, with a overheat problem and desobeied a team order!

  41. James Macdonald says:

    I’m going to go a little left field and say Kamui Kobayashi for me. Fighting with much quicker cars in an intelligent and fair way, and keeping them behind much longer than they should’ve been, showing us a glimpse of the racing skill we all like him for. I’d thought having him in a Caterham would be a poisoned chalice – I didn’t think he’d be in a quick enough car for his racing to entertain. He blew that idea out of the water today.

    1. aveli says:

      that’s true kobayashi did his thing in his not so good car. force india could do with his services.

    2. Chris Chong says:

      Self-confessed Kobayashi fan here, but yeah, his battle with Grosjean was a joy to watch. From the Frenchman’s dash cam, you could see how much the Caterham was twitching and sliding about on corner exits.

      Was mightily annoyed that the Australian broadcasters decided to cut to a commercial break >:(

    3. Torchwood Five says:

      And got Caterham to 10th place in the Championship.

  42. Paul P says:

    Hi James
    Regarding the Ricciardo penalty, I thought it was against the rules for a car to be pushed backwards down the pit lane; am I right?

    1. cee says:

      It’s against the rules to drive back the other way, I believe its an automatic disqualification hence why they had to push him.

    2. KRB says:

      Nope. It has to be pushed. It can’t be driven (reversed) in the pit lane, even though all cars are required to have a reverse gear.

    3. Random 79 says:

      Apparently it’s okay if it’s pushed, but it can’t reverse under it’s own power – though I tend to think exceptions should be made for a car with 3 1/2 wheels on it.

    4. Matthew Cheshire says:

      Pushing is fine. Reversing under power is disqualification.

    5. Hamish says:

      No. It’s illegal to engage reverse gear in the pit lane….has been for decades, AFAIK

    6. Jimmy says:

      No unsafe release as the tyre wasn’t secured. I do think it is a little unsafe to push a car that far backwards in the pit lane though.

    7. Rohind says:

      Against the rules , only if you put in on reverse gear

  43. Matt W says:

    Hamilton for me. I didn’t think anyone else was particularly special today.

  44. Bones says:

    James I understand that you like Rosberg but to include him in the driver of the day is too much.
    He was beaten by his teammate fair and square.
    He overtook just one car at the start, is that all you need to be driver of the day for you?

  45. Andy says:

    Alonso as ever.note to Mercedes PR Lewis should stand still for anthems.also he needs to modify his fist pumping action as it is too similar to another well known motoring gesture!

    1. Frique says:

      No F1 Driver does!!!

      I’d like to see you do a marathon and then stand still just after.

      But let me guess you only noticed when he did it? Go on admit it:-)

      1. Andy says:

        Vetted & Romberg managed it reasonably we’ll without constantly pointing at people like an idiot

      2. Frique says:

        Who’re “Vetted & Romberg”?

        Are you playing a game?

      3. GWD says:

        “who’re Vetted & Romberg”?

        … They’re the drivers who finished behind Hasiltol…

      4. Andy says:

        Fat finger& spellchecker,no time for games!I agree with Joel about Vettel & Schumi although it must be hard to vary it a bit

    2. Joel says:

      It is still better than the ugly jump that Schumacher used to do on the podium(with all respect to the bed-ridden champion) and the finger salute from the current champion.
      However, I do agree Lewis should get used to the camera seeing his receding hair… It seems he is going to extreme lengths to protect his balding head. I won’t be surprised if he soon wears a rug :)

      1. Andy says:

        Not as bad as what Rosberg was playing with!

  46. Kingszito says:

    Hamilton is my driver of the day. Thanks for FIA or FOM for that on screen Fuel Gauge. Now we know the real truth about Lewis and his ability to save fuel + tyre Management. Medias had been shoving liar down our ears just to downgrade Lewis.

    1. Birgitt MB says:

      +1. I wish i could quote you again.
      Today just showed who Lewis is. Some people need to be reminded…Not that we care anyway! Lewis Hamilton knows best, doing the talking on the track.

    2. Craig D says:

      The media do create these stereotypes don’t they. DOes my head in every time we hear of “Hamilton isn’t intelligent” or “Super smooth Button”, “Wet race meister Button”, etc!

      At the end of the day if a driver really struggles it’s largely down to the car and its setup characteristics. Hamilton can handle things as well as most. Sometimes his tyre wear is great, for example, sometimes it isn’t – it’s the same for all the drivers.

      It’s the same as the media banging on about Button’s and his so-called super smooth style. It’s a fallacy. When he is in harmony with the car he can do very well, and rarely makes mistakes. But if the car is hard on its tyres, then he’s going to struggle. The same talk of him being a wet weather God. It’s not true! You need the car to be on form as well.

      There are obviously better drivers than others out there, I’m not saying the only difference is the car (and the top 3 arguably being Alonso, Hamilton and Vettel). But all of them can struggle if the car isn’t up to scratch as well.

    3. Major Clod says:

      As usual, running in clean air would be the main reason for this. If anything, check out Massa who was regularly using even less fuel than Hamilton while battling through the field.

      1. Kay says:

        o_O??!

        So..:
        1. HAM in clean air contributes to using less fuel, therefore:
        2. Mas fighting (thus not in clean air) uses even less fuel???

      2. Major Clod says:

        Massa must be pretty good then hey!

    4. JB says:

      He was on free air meaning he can keep his car cooler than anyone else. That has a direct effect of fuel efficiency. Just take it as two grain of salt.

      That said. I’m most impressed with Mercedes team. They are so far ahead, other teams have yet to be able to come close and apply pressure.

      1. Joel says:

        Not to invalidate your point, but to put this across – Rosberg was so far behind Hamilton that it is as good as running in clear air. However, I feel Rosberg was over was because of his tyre giving away with him having to use more power to exit corners or similar – more setup related, I guess.

  47. radohc says:

    Oh Yes, absolutely Lewis, because this time its the driver, not the car, isnt it? :-)

    1. Mhilgtx says:

      I voted Lewis although it is the car this time. Last year it was the driver and the car working together. You could see that because Webber was not able to compete against Vettel. This year both drivers are able to dominate with the car. With RBR running their car at 2000 less RPM due to reliability issues it will be hard to keep voting for those two.

    2. aveli says:

      was this done by the driver or the car?

      http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=fzFDvZhntvQ

      1. Spinodontosaurus says:

        Raikkonen’s neck was busted after a heavy crash in Free Practice, and finished half a minute behind the leading McLaren of Alonso. He was braking extremely early for the chicanes due to his neck, hence how Hamilton was able to brake so much later.

        Seeing as you seem to be convinced this video is ‘proof’ that Hamilton is the greatest driver ever (wut??), you may want to reconsider your stance seeing as in that race his team mate, Alonso, beat him.

      2. aveli says:

        no chance! There is no handicap in f1. if his neck was busted he would never have driven. do you have an idea what neck strength is required to drive an f1 car?
        why don’t you show me an overtaking move on the edge by any driver you think is the best. I know hamilton is the best ever because there are so many pieces of evidence showing him doing things with his car others have not done. someone posted a video of jackie stewart after speeding it up to make it look good. this is the length people are going through to disproof the fact that hamilton is the best ever.
        look at all of hamilton’s overtakes in 2007 and 2008. he overtook on the edge more often than some multiple world champions managed all their careers.
        show me a single video, just one.

      3. Spinodontosaurus says:

        I’m sorry if the truth hurts. Here is what Raikkonen said in the official press conference after the race:

        “We tried to keep close enough but actually we were not quick enough today, but probably the biggest problem for me was that I couldn’t keep my head upright any more under braking, so my neck is not in such good shape after yesterday.”
        http://www.formula1.com/news/headlines/2007/9/6748.html

        Hamilton was also on fresher tyres (see link). That overtake only happened 11 laps from the end yet Hamilton ended up 20 seconds ahead of Raikkonen by the end of the race, albeit 6 seconds behind team ‘mate’ Alonso.

        The top drivers all perform “on the edge” overtakes all the time (what does that even mean?). If you are going to claim Hamilton is the greatest ever because of his overtaking ability, however a silly a claim this is, then the least you could do is show one of his truly great moves.
        If you honestly wanted, I could come back with a list of great moves that all the top drivers have done, but I don’t see the need to do so and it would be obnoxiously long anyway.

        I don’t agree with all of the following list, but here was BBC Sports top passes of 2012 (skip to 28 seconds for the proper montage to start):
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZaoMPRoOZdM

      4. aveli says:

        @spinodontosaurus, i don’t think you understand what overtaking on the edge upfront means. none of those overtaking moves you posted were in the same class. as i said hamilton made that move on raikkonen in his rookie season and made the rest of the field look silly. you can look at hamilton’s amassing overtaking and defending moves from karting right up to f1. there isn’t a single f1 who has demonstrated such car control consistently. most of them are just one off lucky moves which aren’t even as spectacular. how many drivers make excuses when they loose? raikkonen was just making excuses. if he wasn’t fit enough to drive he wouldn’t have driven. do you think hamilton made that move because he suspected raikkonen had a sore neck? here is another example of his rookie confidencehttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3MeTHySzddY
        like it or not hamilton is the best f1 driver to have stepped foot in the sport and we will not see another as good in our lifetime so enjoy it while you can and leave out the bitterness..

      5. Andre says:

        He will laugh because he himself doesn’t think he is the greatest ever.

        Question. What is the reason Hamilton has a partial yellow helmet?

        But like I said before, there is no such thing as the greatest ever. So what you are claiming is BS anyway, because its personal opinion. There are no facts that will support anybody saying this or that one driver is the best ever. Claiming someone is the best ever is childish.

        Don’t get me wrong, I am a fan too, he is one of the best, but nothing more then that. For all his excellent drives there have been plenty of mistakes too, same for all other drivers in F1 ever.

      6. aveli says:

        hamilton had a message on the back of his helmet which says ‘still i rise’. have you read that poem?
        before journalist asked ecclestone to apologise to hamilton for making a politically incorrect statement about his race, he was touted as the first billion dollar sportsman simply because he is that much better than anyone who has been before him.
        read that poem.

      7. Andre says:

        Even Hamilton would laugh at your comments.

        There is no such thing as the greatest ever. Because there is no specific ability that defines being the greatest ever. It’s all personal opinions.

        Comparing drivers from different era’s is impossible anyway.

      8. aveli says:

        hamilton will not laugh at any of my comments about him. why do you think he’s in f1? he says himself that he’s not like everyone else. he is the best ever f1 driver to have stepped foot in the sport. have you ever heard of a rookie taking on the youngest ever reigning back to back world champion and make him look ordinary? only hamilton has done that. ask alonso and he will tell you just how good hamilton is.

    3. Poyta says:

      Well don’t forget that he absolutely dominated his team mate in the same car and Nico didn’t actually have any problems or issues to explain his lack of performance so regardless of whether Hamiltons in the fastest car or not he still drove brilliantly.

      1. radohc says:

        however on the other hand Vettel never dominated Webber and as we all know, Webber always has been sabotaged by the team :)

        If this result happened last year, with Vettel winning, Webber second and Ham coming in third, he (Ham) would have won the DodD since “provided strong battle to Redbull in clearly inferior car, while the winner only cruised home…”

        Let’s face it. The poll will always be nothing other than a popularity contest. (Unless there is a strong underdog drive in the race)

    4. JF says:

      Completely. It’s only the car when Vettel is driving. The Merc is clearly a pig.

  48. derschorsch says:

    Hulk by a mile for me. For sure in the same league as Vettel, Hamilton and Alonso.

    Hamilton was good – for sure.
    Rosberg was beaten by his team mate.
    Vettel was strong in the RB and took the fight to Rosberg at times even though he had no chance. Alonso did an Alonso – did a very good job with what he had but other than that nothing extra special.

    1. aveli says:

      vettel was overtaken by his teammate.

      1. Rohind says:

        And he overtook him right back and was on tail of Rosberg

      2. aveli says:

        i clearly heard ricciardo asking the team to allow him to get closer to vettel while vettel challenged rosberg so that in case anything happened between them he could be part of it.
        redbull must have asked ricciardo to let vettel back through and stay back from him.

      3. Kay says:

        Dan did it without DRS.

        Vettel simply did a PlayStation move with the press of a button.

      4. aveli says:

        driver of the day don’t get overtaken by their teammate.

      5. ferggsa says:

        Then Massa is dotd

      6. aveli says:

        funny! lol

      7. Andre says:

        Rediculous argument. On the first lap and especially in the first corners when the cars are driving close together it all depends of what other cars are doing and where you end up on the racetrack.

        And regarding Ricciardo you should pay more attention to what is said and why it is said and in what context.

      8. aveli says:

        @andre ricciardo was ahead of vettel for 3 laps after overtaking him and he did say he wanted to be closer to vettel and rosberg in case anything happened between them he wanted to be part of it after he was asked to keep a distance.
        we will find out the results of all the races this season when they happen.

  49. Yago says:

    Lewis behavior reminds me of Alonso. When he did pole position, he was not celebrating, you could sense he gave a sh*t about it, he was just thinking on the race. After the victory, he did celebrate and enjoy, of course, but it was a restrained celebration. He is thinking on the big picture, this is the championship.

    I think Lewis is, finally, on “Alonso mode”. He is becoming the complete driver now, looking always to the big picture, doing the necessary to put everything together. He still has a bit of work to unleash all his speed in qualifying me thinks, which he has not completely done since joining Mercedes. But he is getting there.

    For me, without a doubt, he will win this year WDC.

  50. james encore says:

    I couldn’t vote for Hamilton as driver of the day, because – very good win though it was – he scarcely exerted himself. A very good Saturday, followed by a perfect start and after the first few laps led a procession and showed at the end he could go over a second faster than he was. We could see he was using less fuel and making the tyres last longer than his pursuers. The win was so comfortable he didn’t seem to actually **DO** anything.
    Rosberg. Made a place off the start, couldn’t get near Hamilton and never really threatened by Vettel. Also proved at the end he could have gone faster.
    Vettel – lost two places off the start made one back never threatened by the guys behind, but couldn’t do anything about those in front.
    Alonso – Started 4th, finished … 4th. Lost ground at the start and made it back: at least he had to do something in the race to finish ahead of the guy behind him, but he too could do nothing about those in front.
    Which leaves Hulkenberg. Made places at the start, stayed out longer so the only person other than Hamilton to hold P1, made a different strategy work to finish further up than expected. Both beat those behind him and troubled the ones in front.

    Who else? Bottas made a ton of places, but couldn’t overtake Massa. Definitely worth an Honourable mention. Massa I think took the order not to hold him up literally, but didn’t move over and wave him through. Australia looks like it might have been a false dawn for McLaren.

  51. Dave Aston says:

    Hamilton was awesome. Nice to see him in a great car too, so often he’s won races against the odds. But, my DOD is the Hulk, aka The Invisible Man.

  52. TimW says:

    Hard choice today, Lewis couldn’t have done more but Seb, Fernando, the Hulk, jenson, Felipe and Kvyat all maxed out their packages as well so Im voting for Kamui Kobayashi!

  53. Mocho_Pikuain says:

    Nobody did better than their car. Yes Lewis beat Nico, but Sebastien was beating Daniel and seeing how Fernando and Nico(Hulk) did, they would have probably beaten their mates same way. Can’t think of a really outstandidng driver today.

  54. Deb says:

    Lewis Hamilton (and I am a McLaren supporter!)

    1. Kay says:

      Nothing wrong with supporting an ex-McLaren driver.

  55. Birgitt MB says:

    Lewis Hamilton.
    Commanding performance. Able to mange his tyres, the fuel consumption, race wise and smart after all… Not all the falsity that some media papers like to write about him.
    Well done Nico and Mercedes too

    1. Birgitt MB says:

      *manage

      1. aveli says:

        have you never made a mistake?

  56. Mansell Mania says:

    Hamilton for me. In the same machinary as Rosberg and murdered him.

    Only other driver worth a mention – the Hulk. Wasn’t too far off making his two stop strategy work.

  57. Craig D says:

    Gone for Hulkenberg. Hamilton did excellent and ticked all the boxes but unlikely needed to push the car to its limits throughout the whole race given the lack of challenge he had. Hulkenberg on the other hand, probably had to really reach the potential of that Force India to get 5th (and even put himself in contention for 4th).

  58. Niko says:

    I am a Hami fun, but I expect him to ein when he is give the car. Same goes for Rosberg. But seeing Hulkenberg fighting for best of the rest (Mercedes and Red Bull being ahead) I had to vote for him. I guess it’s the suprise on the tv towards the end…

  59. quattro says:

    In this green F1 era I suppose it has to be one of the Williams drivers as they only used 90% of the fuel for the distance, or?!

    The Merc drivers delivered as expected given the dominance of their package – nothing special there…at all.
    ALO, who usually is the one providing the action and racing among the top drivers, can no longer even do that as the incompetent team of Ferrari cannot even guaranty him top speed any more, let alone downforce. He started 4th and finished there as well (thanks to the DNF of RIC) with not much action to speak of in between.
    RAI? Oh well…the poor Finn even had difficulties overtaking the rookie swede in the Caterham at one point…Well done Ferrari!!

    Maybe Hulk, but again…did not deliver anything out of the ordinary given package order…
    Maybe Bottas for saying loudly on the radio that MAS has a slow a55 (and the very low fuel consumption of their car as this is very important for the “environment” this year)?

    No, today was (exactly as in AUS 2 weeks ago) a F1 race with 22 taxi drivers, coasting and cruising with very expensive cars…pass.

  60. David Ryan says:

    Very close run thing between Lewis Hamilton and Nico Hulkenberg for me, but in the end I went for Nico as once again he really punched above his weight during the race. The Force India isn’t in the same league as the cars around him, so 5th place is a very impressive achievement indeed. That’s not to take anything away from Lewis, who drove a very strong race himself, or indeed Nico Rosberg and Sebastian Vettel who equally drove strongly, but for me Hulkenberg was the standout performer.

  61. Richard says:

    Hulk, all other four, even Alonso, aren’t worth mentioning today. I bet Grosjean has never been happier with an 11th place. Or 12th.

  62. Grant says:

    Grand Chelem – Lewis Hamilton

  63. Krischar says:

    “Alonso did an Alonso – did a very good job with what he had but other than that nothing extra special”

    What extra special do you expect from Alonso? At best Ferrari were behind Mercedes, RBR, Mclaren & even Force India in terms of raw pace. Alonso did the best job he could with F14 T in the race. Just after the race Alonso took a close look at RBR and Mercedes car with deflated face. That says it all

    In fairness Ferrari were not even able to match the Force India top speed, Alonso tried to overtake Hulk in the straights and found it difficult even with DRS, hence alonso overtook hulk in the slow corners with the help of strategy

    Now two races in a row where Ferrari struggled to find the balance and pace in the car. It’s is very sad and a usual state of affair for Fernando Alonso. I feel very sorry and disenchanted for you Alonso

    Alonso have put in a consummate driver and showed his class once again. Bravo Alonso

    DOTD Lewis

    1. Spinodontosaurus says:

      Alonso finished the best part of 50 seconds down the road from the nearest McLaren, how on earth were McLaren faster…?

      He was tagging with Rosberg, Vettel and Ricciardo early on, and was directly racing the latter for 4th place. This isn’t a bad car (nor was last years for that matter), it just can’t match the Mercedes like everything else also can’t.

  64. Thompson says:

    Consider last race Nico left the field by 14secs this week Hamilton left him by the same gap……

    Said after the last race the future of f1 will be a tussle between Vettel and Hamilton – it started today.

    1. f1 supremo2 says:

      Vettel and Hamilton are the fastest drivers on the grid. Both have the speed to overcome Schumi’s 68 pole position record. Vettel has already 45 with Lewis 33 not being too fat away. And both are still quite young. Third fastest is probably Hulkenberg. Alonso and Raikkonen are quite old now and are lacking speed comparing to Vettel and Hamilton, they will most probably never beat Schumi’s record. As for the titles and wins records, those will be tough to overcome, even for Vettel and Hamilton.

      1. Alexander Supertramp says:

        I agree. One side note, Alonso might not have razorsharp speed anymore, but he’s an amazing racer. So is Kimi, even though he’s been struggling so far.

      2. Kay says:

        Alonso has never been the fastest, even he said so himself. His strength is consistency.

  65. Phil Shotton says:

    Lewis all weekend. He put together the platform to perform on race day by getting pole position on Saturday in extremely trying conditions.

  66. luqa says:

    Hulk- for punching way above his weight. He has dominated Perez handily so far. SP last year was on fairly equal terms with Button..
    With Ron Dennis back at the helm at Mclaren, JB’s time at Mclaren could be coming to an end if he doesn’t pull up his socks, and be replaced with someone like Hulk. Maybe last year’s Mclaren wasn’t so bad after all?

    1. Alexander Supertramp says:

      I have noticed the difference between Perez and Hulkenberg. Trust me, it’s going to be a bloodbath by the end of the season. Hulkenberg has Perez covered in all areas. This is his last year in the midfield. He’s driving for Ferrari or Mclaren next year.

  67. Random 79 says:

    Ricciardo, partly for the excellent pass on Vettel at the start and partly just because I’m biased – beat you to it ;)

    1. Gaz Boy says:

      Daniel could have been sitting on 30 points after this race, instead he sits on a big fat zero.
      And it is zero Dan’s fault………..still, 17 races to go and all that.

      1. Random 79 says:

        Yep, and if he’s still smiling I have to give him massive respect for it because I can tell you now I wouldn’t be.

        But you never know; there’s still a chance that in a couple weeks he might get 18 of those lost points back, so fingers and toes crossed :)

      2. Gaz Boy says:

        Random, don’t forget thumbs as well.
        That’s a point, thumbs are the most under-rated part of a driver. Try holding a steering wheel and changing gear without your thumbs and you’ll see what I mean. Perhaps the drivers thumbs are insured by the teams for multi-millions?
        As for the Appeal, I wish Daniel well……….but that is wishful thinking and I don’t think the FIA are going to backtrack from their decision, but we’ll see.

      3. Random 79 says:

        That’s the kicker: It’s not the FIA’s decision, it’s the decision of an independent court so let’s see ;)

        p.s. I have a feeling that a driver’s everything is insured :)

  68. Thompson says:

    Hamilton, driver of the weekend for getting the clean sweep – pole, fastest lap & win, he also put his team mate under some heavy manners.

    You have to tilt your hat to Vettel for holding on to Rosberg though. That was impressive, the Merc is fast but Vettel kept him honest.

    Big HELL YEAH!!! , to Massa, its full time he asserted himself, should of done so along time ago.

    but that bottas looks scarey, guy looks like he’d lock you up in his celler for years…… you know what I mean?

    1. JohnBt says:

      It’s called ‘Grand Chelem’ when a driver achieves a perfect weekend.

  69. Mike Brazil says:

    I ebjoyed today’s race a lot from my bed in Brazil at 5am. First of all when i woke up I was surprised but happy that it was dry. Hulkenberg drove well and so did bit red bull drivers but the driver of the day was Lewis Hamilton.

    When you hit the apexes of the corners and take the racing line around the track so well, so instinctively and so consistently as Hamilton naturally does then it doesn’t surprise that he uses less fuel and and wears the tires less. Of course he needs the right machinery to do so, like all the drivers. In my opinion he has driven without faults since the start of this season with a great car under him. Fair play to him! I think we will see a HAM, ROS, VET result again next weekend.

  70. John S says:

    **Readers take note this poll characterizes clear fan bias rather than media bias. James has nothing to do with these opinions.

    Now I know I’m not crazy.

    Hamilton driver of the day for doing what Vettel has done for the past four years. Give me a break please.

    The real driver of the day was Hulkenberg.

  71. aveli says:

    pole fastest lap and race victory. the whole package, must be the driver of the day for the all time greatest, hamilton.

  72. spactus says:

    Lewis is Driver of the Day by far because he faced the most pressure of The score board.With Rosberge wining the 1st race with a 25 point lead ,only a commanding win would do to calm the pundits and critics

    lewis is driver of the day because by wining he has silence his CRITICS,and despell the notion that he cant manage his fuel and tires,and that he could do it better and more efficent than Rosberge can.
    Although I must say this whole debate about linking fuel consumption and intelligence is a bogus one on so many level.A driver using more fuel is just a function of his driving stlye or as a result of his Car setup or weather he is in traffic or have to defend for the whole race.Rogger fedderer plays more effortless than Nadal not because he is more intelligent.they are just stylistly different,and there style is not a measure of there interlect

    Lewis is driver of the day because by wining he has diffuse the pressure created by the media.
    Auto sport after 1 race already writing about Merc and team others,Ted Cravitz and the Sky boyz are teasing the question of team other,giggling at the prospect of Lewis being forced to stay behind Rosberge…

    so yea big psychological victory for Lewis and for the next few days it will be safe to cross all bridges…lol

  73. Hulk – consistently puts his car where it doesn’t belong. Did the same today on the old Force India favorite strategy of 1 less stop. Well done. Yes Lewis was very good but we know that all things being equal he had the fastest car.

  74. Carl Craven says:

    Hulkenberg.

    Very fast in every phase of the race (it’s driver of the race, not the weekend) he’s pace nearly paid dividends.

    We need to consider which team he’s driving for.

    We should also bear in mind everyone was screaming at Lotus to give him a place. Look how that would have worked out.

  75. Panagiotis says:

    Hulk???? Don’t know. With this engine should have been I front of Alo. Kimi was the driver of the day. Hamilton too, very mature driving, true championship winning style.

  76. aveli says:

    hamilton had the words ‘still i rise’ written on the back of his helmet during qualifying. i hope martin brundle and his friend get the chance to read that poem.

  77. Jason says:

    Lewis by the way he just controlled the race followed by Hulk who continues to exceed expectation.

    As for Massa, it is too little too late. Why oh why did he not do this at Ferrari? Oh wait, he knew he’d be fired and probably thinks Williams wouldn’t dare fire him. He will be in for a shock if it happens again and again.

    That is of course assuming that the clearly faster and superior driver Bottas doesn’t school Massa this season.

  78. Rishi says:

    Has to be Hamilton I think, mostly for the way he dominated even Nico Rosberg. Good to show he can beat Nico in this new age of F1, though this isn’t the first time we’ve seen him display these deft race management skills (Barcelona 2012 anyone?).

    Thumbs up for Nico Hulkenberg, who is quietly doing a very solid job at Sahara Force India. His team-mate’s had a few issues this season but once his luck improves Sergio Perez will very much have his work cut out to beat The Hulk.

    I’m not one who needs a ‘crash-bang-whallop’ race every other week, and I don’t mind races which fall under the “interesting but not exciting” category. However, I was hoping from a bit more from this race; the start was good and the end gave us some intrigue but there were a fair few laps in the middle where I was thinking “C’mon, someone make something happen here!” It was frustrating to see cars get close to each other but then drop back again (think Rosberg v Vettel and Ricciardo v Alonso), denying us a good battle. It wasn’t the worst race I’ve ever seen or anything like that, and if it still gives us a decent title battle then no complaints, but I do hope it’ll be a bit better in a week’s time.

    1. Phil Shotton says:

      Great post :)

      Can Lewis win consistently? It should be a great season long tussle between him and Rosberg and who knows RBR might get in the mix later on in the season…

    2. Robb says:

      It’s true that this wasn’t the most exciting race ever, but then this is about the greatest change from one era to the next that we’ve ever seen, so I think two races in is a little too early to judge.

      It will take time to iron out all the bumps, and for the field to compress (at least hopefully among the top 3 or 4 teams),maybe half a year or even a year, but I think the new formula has the potential to be as, if not more, exciting than the V8 era.

  79. kenneth chapman says:

    i voted for ‘other’ and let my thoughts go with ricciardo. he made a stunning start, going round the outside of vettel and holding it. it took vettel 4/5 laps to get a pass done and then only under DRS. when ricciardo emerged from his tyre stop alonso was in front but ricciardo drove all over him and gave alonso a lesson that he will not forget.

    the fact that ricci didn’t get to finish did in no way diminish his driving on the day.

  80. Multi 21 says:

    Somewhat different from the rest, I nominate Grosjean:

    He managed to finish a race distance (the toughest one, at that) and only 2 seconds out of the points. Also held off his ex-teammate in a Ferrari to come home 11th in a car that is clearly underdone.

  81. Dave says:

    Lewis all the way for me. There is no denying the W05′s dominance, but the fact is he beat his team mate by 17secs, while being far more fuel efficient. Not bad for a tyre eater with a heavy right foot and no racing intelligence!

    I hope Hulk gets his chance in a front running car soon – today’s performance again shows why he deserves it!

    Unlucky driver of the day (and season so far) has to go to Ricciardo – am still very impressed with the start he’s made to the season and looking forward to seeing what challenge he can pose to Vettel over the course of the season.

  82. Wombat says:

    Vettel obviously, he held it all together to the end for the first time. But the abiding issue for Red Bull continues; they seem unable to put two fully sorted cars on the grid.

    Looks like they couldn’t fit a burette on the steering wheel to they have a buzzer in the helmet instead (to monitor instantaneous fuel flow).

    BTW I wonder of the frequencies emitted by the new era car engines are creating harmonics that interfere with the ultrasonic fuel flow meters? Maybe the guys should make sure that they are isolated sonically and from vibration.

    1. Robb says:

      Wow. For a moment I thought you wrote “Looks like they couldn’t fit a brunette on the steering wheel”. Gave me a laugh.

  83. Kurtis says:

    How do you pick a driver the of the day from that god awful boring race. No one did anything all afternoon, but I guess Hulkenberg by default for beating the Mclarens.
    This new formula is definitely not living up to the testing hype

  84. J.Storm says:

    First of all, thank you for this excellent site Mr. Allen, your insight and balanced reporting, the regular technical articles and the quality of the comments, make reading it a great experience.

    My vote was for Hulkenberg, he was the one really standing out from today’s race, Hamilton’s drive was very good but the difference between Mercedes and the rest of the field is too great, leaving space for wins without amazing drives, at least for now.
    Rosberg was second with a similar car as Hamilton’s , a long way back, but that could be related to a “conservational” drive, ordered by the team; Vettel wasn’t much faster than his team mate, Alonso showed grit and good speed but he needs to be higher up to be noticed, the expectations on him are so high.
    Besides Hulkenberg a second “driver of the day” was Massa, from a moral stand point, as he finally started fighting for his dignity as a racer.

    Off topic: great photo for Alonso, seems to capture Ferrari’s way: always decided, passionate but also opressive, constrictive sometimes.

  85. Racingrot says:

    For me, it is Lewis. Finally happy and relieved to see the machinery holding up and see a super star doing what he’s best doing.

  86. Hamish says:

    Hulk, Ricciardo, Kobayashi, Alonso

  87. Devilsadvocate says:

    Vettel for dragging that turd of a Renault up to the 3rd place…. And nobody even think about criticising that, Hamilton and Alonso got DoTD for far less accomplishment in the past few years with cars that were no good. Predictably Hamilton drives off the end of the race in a car that is leagues ahead of the rest and suddenly it’s all driver skill, yeah ok

  88. Peter Dab says:

    Lewis has the best car but he was untouchable regardless.
    Off-topic:
    I am seriously worried that our beloved sport is going off the rails:
    1. cars sound like diesel SUVs
    2. cars look like cruising, not racing: no revs, no bottoming-out sparks; very low revs through many corners;
    when TV transmission comes back after commercial break I sometimes think that safety car must be on
    3. excess torque (or lack of grip), forcing drivers to tip-toe out of corners;
    4. 10-grid penalty for Dan after 5sec stop-go is just stupid: it wasn’t his mistake; why not stop-go and/or a big fine (proportional to team points standing, so that it hurts each team in equal measure)
    5. economy drive means drivers can only push hard in small bursts: we can forget 10 or 20 lap crazy chases and challenges
    6. the racing is now so sterilised and devoid of testosterone-fuelled action that excess tyre wear doesn’t matter any more

    1. Andre says:

      I am afraid I have to agree.

      Hyper futuristic engines may be great but this is F1 racing. I don’t care if they could do a racedistance on 10 liters of fuel. I want to see racing not management.

    2. cbush66 says:

      +1 Have been a fan for 20 years and only missed 1 race. F1 was never green…… it was racing at its best.

    3. JohnBt says:

      2013 – Vettel – 1:38:56.681
      2014 – Lewis – 1:40:25.974

      Difference – Less than 2 mins

      But it feels much longer than the extra 2 mins as the lack of sound made the race much slower psychologically.

  89. Ryan says:

    Hulkenburg.

    Anybody concerned Kimi was having trouble with Caterham and Marussia? Sure the puncture meant race over, but I still expected him to go quickly through the back markers… ? Damage?

    1. Elie says:

      Tyre damaged the undertray

  90. KARTRACE says:

    Kvyat. He is next Putin.

  91. Rohind says:

    James, Could you please have an article explaining the start systems of different cars this season ? I thought Vettel’s redbull had a decent start off the line, but Rosberg came out of nowhere and was very close at the first corner

  92. McRocket says:

    Hamilton? What skill does it take to drive by far the fastest car to victory from pole? My vote goes to Hulkenberg.

  93. German Samurai says:

    Hulkenberg for his performance in a midfield car at best. This is the difference a good driver makes. We saw it last year at Sauber and now at Force India.

    Ferrari made their choice. Throughout 2013 and now 2014 in a different car Hulkenberg has regularly been able to challenge Alonso for position in a midfield car. Imagine what Hulkenberg would be doing in a Ferrari.

    Also, I was at the race yesterday. As disappointing as the cars were on TV in Melbourne, I can’t begin to describe how underwhelming that were in person over the weekend. From the same vantage points as were I watched in 2013, the cars were visibly slower , and the sound is simply a non-factor now. It’s quiet and not even a nice sounding engine. The old sound would make my hair stand on end. It didn’t feel like I was at an F1 race.

  94. Mike84 says:

    Massa

  95. Scott says:

    Hamilton leading the poll, I notice. I seem to remember that when Vettel led from lights to flag in the dominant car never featured well in these polls because it was “just the car” and “genius Adrian Newey”. If that were true, and the driver’s contribution is really that meaningless, then Hamilton’s drive must surely be regarded in the same way. And the advantage the Mercedes had yesterday was greater than anything the previous Red Bull had when Vettel was winning his championships.

    1. SaScha says:

      looks like many posters have a different opinion to it.

    2. Robb says:

      Well, this really is more of a popularity poll than anything else. I’m sure most of Vettel’s fans were voting for him even when he won easily.

      This being an English language site, it’s not surprising there are more Lewis fans than Seb fans. I suspect, if there was a German equivalent to this site, things would be just the opposite.

    3. Kay says:

      I suspect a lot has to do with how other things contributes. Including the team, the way the race was managed, the way the drivers are managed between the team and the drivers themselves.

      RBR don’t do themselves any favours in those regards (Vettel v Webber; the team’s pat on Vettel’s backs, fingers, etc).

      On the contrary, Hamilton has always been labelled as all out aggressive racer with no brains, and today he silenced his critics through his driving, evident from the fuel gauge graphic, his win, grand chelem, and beaten his team mate fair and square without favours or team orders. In that Vettel hasn’t achieved yet.

      If and when one day Vettel does that, I’m sure everybody would start to react differently and warmly.

  96. Alpha16 says:

    Hulkenburg

    Hulks on fire this year!Mixing it up with the big boyz!

    it was another dead beat race!!

    I would have still chosen him over Magnussen hands down any day if it were my team!

    This weekend Magnussens barely been faster then Button which doesn’t say much at all!

  97. TJ says:

    Sure Hulkenburg Finishing 4th is a great result for him but I still don’t quite understand the level of hysteria about how good he is.

    He basically maintained position due to Raikkonen and Ricciardo being taken out of the picture ahead of him. Had their races not been destroyed through no fault of their own then he would have certainly finished 7th (his starting position)

    By all accounts the Force India is a good car. It was fast in winter testing, it has been solid throughout practice and qualifying in Aus and Malaysia

    1. TJ says:

      obviously meant finishing 5th

  98. Big Al says:

    Driver of the weekend?
    Bernd Maylander, as he was the only one driving something that sounded like a racecar and not a blender or a vacuum cleaner

    1. Rich C says:

      LOL +1

    2. JohnBt says:

      Agreed +1 lol!

  99. Matthew Taylor says:

    I’m not really sure about the driver of the day, but the teams as a group were impressive with every constructor having managed at least one race distance now.

    How they can make so much improvement with such limited opportunities to run the cars amazes me.

  100. Paul D says:

    Lewis clearly.

    He proved a lot, including the fact he is not the unitelligent flat to the floor merchant he often gets labelled with.

    Hamilton showed in a top car he can deliver exactly the same level of performance as Vettel has been doing at Red Bull. I’d love to see those two head to head.

    I feel for Alonso. He has wasted the best years of his career being let down by Ferrari. He’ll never win another title now in my opinion.

  101. Elie says:

    Sergio Perez because he has the food sense to sit out the race in the shade of the garage. Whilst everyone knew Lewis would win.

    Fantastic Drive by Lewis but as much as it pains me to say– It was Vettel that was DOD. Dan passed him but he had the gonnads to pass him back. Not only that he took it Rosberg in that faster Merc & almost came up trumps.

  102. El Mago says:

    Has anybody noticed that the same person who designed the Mercedes car in the last couple of years was fired from Ferrari. I believe that Ferrari should review itself very depply.

    1. Kay says:

      I was going to say something on that, but on a different person.

      Last year, didn’t Ferrari say they rehired Rory Bryne to design the 2014 car? When the Ferrari La Ferrari rolled out, Bryne said that’s only a kid’s play in comparison to the 2014 F1 car.

      Now Bryne has designed very brilliant F1 cars in the early 2000s, winning championships for consecutive years.

      Everything changed after Raikkonen won the WDC for Ferrari. I’d say it’s down to the management of the whole team rather than the fault of any individual that designed / engineered the Ferrari F1 cars.

  103. JohnBt says:

    None of the drivers stole my attention at all for the race.

  104. Rememberonnie says:

    Massa. For obvious reasons.

  105. John in SD says:

    Hamilton

  106. sunny stivala says:

    Somebody that most probably believes that he is a F1 FOLLOWER at the beginning of this page said “Lulu because of his (Lulu’s) superior driving skills”.
    I cannot imagine a through F1 follower believing that there exists anything like that difference in lap time or that big a driving superiority between the Mercedes drivers.

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