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Abu Dhabi Grand Prix
Indian Grand Prix – Who was your Driver of the Day?
Posted By: James Allen  |  28 Oct 2012   |  7:30 pm GMT  |  263 comments

Sebastian Vettel took a fourth successive win with an impressive drive to victory in the Indian Grand Prix, but there were strong drives throughout the field. What about Fernando Alonso moving up from 5th to 2nd? Or Mark Webber getting a podium despite not having KERS? Who was your driver of the day?

Sebastian Vettel

Arrived in India having led every single lap of the last three races to assume the championship lead. Dominated all practice sessions and continued that good form by taking pole position – his fifth of the season – to head a third successive Red Bull lock out. Defended aggressively from team mate Mark Webber at the start to take the lead and from then on commanded the race from the head of the field. Collected his fifth win of the season and second successive triumph in India to extend his lead over Fernando Alonso to 13 points at the top of the drivers’ standings.

Fernando Alonso

Boosted by his Ferrari team bringing several new parts to India but struggled to keep pace with the Red Bulls and McLarens in practice. Made a mistake on his final qualifying lap to finish fifth fastest, one place ahead of team mate Felipe Massa. A good start saw him pull alongside both McLarens on the first lap, making a move on Lewis Hamilton stick before passing Jenson Button a few laps later. Began catching Webber and passed him as the Australian struggled with a Kers problem. Finished second – his 10th podium of the season – to retain hopes of a third title.

Mark Webber

Matched team mate Vettel for pace all weekend, but made a mistake on his final qualifying run and started second. Made a good start, putting pressure on Vettel, but couldn’t get past and settled into second a few seconds adrift. Looked after his tyres, but lost a place to Alonso in the closing stages as he struggled with a Kers problem. Held off Hamilton to secure the final podium position in third and retain a mathematical but slim chance of a maiden title.

Lewis Hamilton

Bemoaned a lack of pace after Friday practice but was closer than many expected in qualifying to line up third on the grid. Needed to make an impact on the Red Bulls but instead found himself struggling to hold off Alonso. Lost a place to team mate Button and then Alonso. Fought back – with the use of DRS – to pass Button for fourth. His McLaren team changed all four tyres and his steering wheel in just 3.3 seconds before sending him back out on track in pursuit of Webber. Begun catching Webber – and closed to within a second – but ran out of laps to pass the Australian and finished fourth.

Nico Hulkenberg

Looked impressive in recent races, outperforming Force India team mate Paul di Resta, and lined up 12th on the grid, four places ahead of Di Resta. Made a good getaway and confirmed his car’s good race pace in front of the team’s home crowd by scything through the field – putting a good move on Romain Grosjean – to finish eighth – his third consecutive points finish and ninth of the season.

Bruno Senna

Under pressure to deliver a strong drive having underperformed in comparison to his team mate Pastor Maldonado for much of this season. Ran in the top 10 across the weekend, but a mistake in qualifying meant he missed out on Q3. Starting 13th, the Brazilian kept his nose clean at the start and then quietly progressed through the field. Put a clever move on Maldonado which would have boosted his confidence on the way to 10th – his eighth points finish of the season to close to within seven points of Maldonado in the standings.

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It's pretty obvious Alonso is going to win this poll. I personally don't think that it takes any skill to overtake with DRS and a car with a large straight line speed advantage. Alonso also made a mistake, went off the track and was lucky not to pick up a puncture. I think Alonso is made to look better than he is by Massa who has not been the same driver since his big accident.

Vettel dominated the weekend and outperformed his very strong team mate by some margain. I am sick of hearing the media's praise of Alonso and think Vettel deserves alot of credit for his performances this year.

Hamilton and Senna also had excellent races.


"I am sick of hearing the media’s praise of Alonso and think Vettel deserves alot of credit for his performances this year."

Like the same can't be said about Vettel?

Truth is if you put Alonso and Vettel in the same car I am pretty sure Alonso would win. Alonso is driving the hell out of a Ferrari that for the most part is not the fastest car out there. Alonso is not racing Vettel for the most part, he's racing Adrian Newey.


"Alonso is not racing Vettel for the most part, he’s racing Adrian Newey"

Fernando, is that you?

In all seriousness I disagree that if Alonso and Vettel were in the same car then Alonso would win. Hamilton has already proven (as a rookie) that Alonso is not the God that many on here seem to think he is.

Vettel is a better qualifier and just as quick in the race as Alonso and he has proven this year that he can overtake with the best of them (see Spa).


4 races, 100% LAP LED record! The man is a machine. Boring races, but impressive feats. Lets just hope its not a sign of next year, as much as I admire RBR, I don't want a Ferrari-Schumi repeat [or should that be 5-peat]?

Alonso's drive was dogged and determined; he gets the wooden spoon prize for trying so hard but for naught.


Fully agree.


Fernando again maximized his chances and kept his title hopes alive. Bar a couple of mistakes, he's been consistently competitive all year, so you've got to give him some credit and admit he's not over hyped.

Seb meanwhile is also very quick and a very talented driver, but majority of his GP wins were won starting from the front or (very) near it, so you can't quite debunk the claim that having a quicker car did/does not play a major role in his (continuing) success. And if you look at this year, he only started winning again when Red Bull out-developed its rivals. Then again, it's not really his fault that he has a car advantage and you make good with the tools available to you - and Seb is very good at maximizing a car advantage.


Just tell me when the last time was that Vettel had a KERS issue?

If you do not understand that Vettel is allowed to win (as opposed to his strong team mate) in a far superior car which has little to do with amount of talent (which he obviously possesses)then you get comments like this about how he does not get enough praise...


He had two alternator failures in 2012 races, Webber hasn't had a mechanical problem that has stopped him in a race, I think he just equalled a record of Schumacher's from Ferrari days of consecutive finishes without a mechanical retirement


@ F1fan4life, the problems on both are resultant of overheating, typical of the RBRs (tightly packaged).

But the interesting thing is that it DOES seem like each driver is prone to their respective problems. But there can't really be that much a difference in set-up driver style, can there?


James, two comments on this. Firstly I think that Webber always seems to have more issues, I would guess at least half the GPS this year, sometime during the race weekends. I've never tallied it myself but from my reading he seems to have more than his fair share. Last year was even worse for him. Is it actually lopsided? When it comes to reported issues it certainly seems so.

Secondly, could the alternator failures be brought on by a particular style, or the fact that he was driving the car harder?


Yes, but Marko can't switch-off the Alternator like he can Mark's KERS unit 😉


I think Alonso deserves Driver of the Day award this time, and I'm a Vettel fan.

But if I compare this race with Spa, where Vettel came from 10th to 2nd, overtaking several cars without using DRS, overtaking cars without KERS problem, in a car that wasn't the best (McLaren was at that time), I think it's fair to say Vettel should have won Spa DoD. But guess who won? Driver who started from P1 and led from start to finish, because he "controled" the race so fine. No, it wasn't Vettel, it was Button.

Anyway (again from a Vettel fan), if Alonso wins this championship, it will be more than deserved, esepcially if you remember the Ferrari form at the start of the season.

McLaren are the biggest losers. They had the fastest car in like 10 or more races, and they will finish 3rd and without their star driver.


The funny part is Alonso n Hamilton fans don't think Vettel deserves the title. As for the title the driver with the most points deserves it the rest is fan perception.


You are not a fan of Vettel, if you were you would not say Alonso deserves the title.


I am a Vettel fan, but I am capable to see things as they are.

I have huge respect for Alonso and Hamilton, because they are truly great drivers.

I admit that Alonso is the most complete driver at the moment, but I also believe that Vettel will be even better at Alonso's age.

Alonso is driving his best season even, but Vettel is great too. People tend to forget that Red Bull had the best car at the last 3 races (+ maybe Bahrain and Valencia), while McLaren had the best car in 10 races or more. So Vettel is driving great also.

So again, I hope Vettel wins his 3rd title, and 4th next year, but if Alonso wins this year, I will have to admit it is well deserved.




Same can be said about qualifying on pole, cutting off your team mate at the start, pulling out of the DRS range in the first to laps & then maintaining the gap through the race!

At least Alonso had to overtake people to get on the podium!

My driver of the day... Senna, his 8th points finish of the year & if you take away Maldonados win, he would easily be beating his so called 'better' team mate.


Regarding Senna ... his season has been shadowed by MAL winning @Barcelona, but on a consistency perspective along the year he's been doing much better than his teammate.

Despite the good long runs, what hurts him is his poor single-laps qualifying performance


I think that speaks more about the talent gap between Webber and Vettel than it does about Vettel's talent compared to Alonso.


It takes skill to balance aggressiveness to achieve stable performance. This is usualy a virtue of drivers strong in the head in addition to anything else required to be a F1 pilot. Hamilton started 3rd and finished 4th. Senna was really good...


"I personally don’t think that it takes any skill to overtake with DRS and a car with a large straight line speed advantage"

I'm not sure it's all that amazing to take poll and drive away each race with a large car advantage either. It's obviously skillfull, but is anyone kidding themselves that Vettel's potential 4 (by the end of next year)back to back WDC's really reflect the pecking order of the drivers? 4 BACK TO BACK WDC'S people. That would make Vettel one of the best drivers who ever lived already and much much better than Hamilton and Alonso? No. What he has done has brilliantly made the best of what he has been given - but he has been given a clear advantage for much of the last three years.

What I really enjoyed about this race was watching the drivers drive their cars as fast as they could go for much of the race! Without tyre worries it was a joy to see these guys throwing their cars into every corner! For a brief moment we had a race in a world RACING championship instead of the usual world tyre-saving championship! Hooray!


Why isn't he? Vettel execute under pressure. He delivers performances when it counts. He delivers the wins and consistency when it's needed. Compare Vettel to Webber. Look st what Alonso does to Webber. I know you're huge Hamilton fan, there are many Alonso fans here. But it is really time you guys recognize that Alonso doesn't have some magical powder in his race suit pocket. I would love to see Seb vs Fernando. And I really think you guys would not like the results. Just like Alonso fans didn't like Lewis - rookie - whip Alonso, fresh 2 time WDC at the time.



I hear your point. Too many Alonso fans make for an unblanced discussion. I need to get a bit more agressive because the points brought here are tedious as well. Everyone things Alonso is a magician. He isn't

I remember clearly krischar, when Vettel chased down the McLaren for the win (I think it was Button) and executed a flawless pass - not sure the GP - everyone was all a buzz about what a recer Vettel is. What, he suddenly forgot?

You know we love it when the driver we don't cheer for gets beaten and is mad about it. It happens in all cases. I think Vettel has gotten quite good as controlling his emotions. I think you or I would be quite irritated when we got spanked in a GP. As we should be - to get motivation to do better. I don't hold it against any driver, even if I do enjoy seeing a driver I don't cheer for sweat. I guess non-Vettel fans are lacking that lately. 🙂


@ Sebee

what he excutes under pressure ? Let me tell you this vettel was under pressure this year on many races where he simply faltered and showed his sulky face (Malaysia, Monaco, GB, Germany most visible one, Hungary, Italy, Korea when webber beats vettel to pole)

[Rest of post moderated out]

[Your posts have become a tedious list of reasons why your driver is better than another driver. This kind of post adds nothing to the debate and turns off other fans. Please do not write this kind of post again here, - Mod]



Why does Vettel need to come down to them to contend? Why can't they come up to him to contend? Isn't he the top dog right now? Last I checked he's the one riding around with my favorite number on this car.

Where od you get 4 times as good as Lewis? 2 times as goos as Alonso? This is not even possible. The difference between these guys is likely 100ths of a second.


4 times as good as Hamilton, twice as good as Alonso? Just as Vettel's detracters do not accept how good you have to be to make the most of your machinery week in and week out, Vettel's supporters do not accept the advantage he has most of the time on track.

Alonso and Hamilton have gone up against one another... Until Vettel pits himself against one of the best the questions will remain.


If Lewis and Alonso were happy to waste years of their careers rather than seek out a drive with which they could win the WDC whose fault is that?



I simply agree that F1 may be wasting talent. I think we would all enjoy Vettel vs. Alonso in same team to finally put an end to the bickering. It would be cool.

F1 powers that be know that resolving that question will lower the entertainment value. So it is key to spread them around teams as you have now. Seb, Kimi, Fernando, Lewis on different teams. McLaren with Button - we'll see but I share your doubts.

I think Vettel, Lewis, Alonso are all at the same level. Each has strengths and weaknesses. Each of those can be a benefit or hinderance. Unfortunately for you Lewis is going to be a non-contender for some time - which is a waste and again - who's fault is that exactly except for Lewis'? Alonso is committed to Ferrari so at least he'll be in the thick of it for a while. So it will be Vettel and Alonso show for some time to come.

If putting yourself in the best position to utilize your skills is a bad thing than I can understand all the bitterness toward Vettel. The boy is smart. He's also a very good driver. Alonso, Lewis or whoever should know by now that they better bring the whole package if they want to contend against what he has surrounded himself with. Otherwise, there is no room for them on the top step.


@Wayne, The same can be said for any WDC, how many win without the best machinery? He is that good and the results speak for themselves.

My statement was fairly tongue in cheek because it's obvious to anyone paying attention that Mclaren in particular are not that far behind Redbull - at the start of the year we were even being told they were faster! The season has hardly been a cakewalk for Vettel yet he still has put in the results when he needed them most.

Despite that most here act like he is in some kind of ungodly machine where he just has to press a button and sit back to enjoy the ride. Give me a break.


So you admit that Vettel is winning every year because 'Lewis and Alonso were happy to waste years of their careers rather than seek out a drive with which they could win the WDC' and NOT because he is a better driver?

I am not trying to say that Vettel is not as good as Alonso and Hamilton. I am trying to say that his potential haul of four back to back WDCs by 2014 flatter him. He is not THAT good - in F1 the car is almost everything.


There are logical fans here after all!


As a Hamilton fan I think Vettel is every bit as good as Hamilton and Alonso, if not better. His performance at Spa was the stand out performance for me this year and dominating Monza in the Torro Rosso was one of the most incredible performances in recent F1 history.


"dominating Monza in the Torro Rosso was one of the most incredible performances in recent F1 history"

Every good driver has one of these stories when everything (usually including the rain) came together on one day to allow a shock result. Vettel is far from the only driver ever to win a wet race against the odds.


Voted for Alonso. Can't really single out anyone else who might even closely deserve that award for this race.

Yes, DRS overtakes are easier, but did he use his DRS on the opening lap to fight alongside Button and Hamilton?

Did he finish 10 seconds away from the devastatingly fast Red Bull? A mistake? Tires fading away is more likely.

I can't really give anything out to VET this time, as he made it look like a walk in the park. When you are not fighting with the machinery and you have clear sight in front of you it's actually easier. This is not to take anything in general from VET, but he is having nice clean advantage.


Wow. When it comes to Alonso you say Massa sucks but when it comes to Webber he becomes a very strong team mate?

I personally don't think that winning the race with the fastest car takes any skill. 😉


Let me tell you this one simple fact. It's way easier to follow than to lead. What am I talking about?

Take 2 motorcycles, put them on the track one chasing the other 10 seconds back. It is by far easier to be the chaser than the leader. As the leader you will be the one subjected to any track conditions, debris, dirt, rocks, oil, etc. first. The rider following has the first rider as a point of reference for all that information and thus can "push" harder.

So don't for a second think that what Vettel is doing on his own up front is less worthy than Alonso in traffic. You guys dismiss it too easily. Alonso has all the drivers around him who's cars are a reference of information for him. While Vettel is gathering data and responding to data supplied only by his car and his senses. Yet he is the one putting in the faster laps, not Alonso. Lap after lap after lap.

Cheering for the underdog is one thing. Belittling Vettels performances last few races is another.



10s was a bad example for race bikes amd i used that number because of the margin in Indian GP. But in spirited riding I like to be about 3 to 5s back to allow space. Obviously I don't stare at the rider ahead as that wouldn't last long. But having the rider ahead, a strong rider ahead, gives you a reference point of what the conditions ahead are, what's possible, a reference.

My GT2 carrier lasted 3 laps. But as usual in this type of opportunity you build up to that 3 laps in other less racy hardware. Point is, none of us have driven an F1 car. And during this opportunity I can tell you it was beneficial to have the instructor ahead as reference. Obviously F1 driver is well skilled. But I don't see how they don't read cars around for data even in F1. Be it for track conditions or your competitors car state. You see it all the time. You really see it in changing condition races.


You sure do know your motorbikes Sebee!

When you're on track on your CBRSebee how do you see the leader when he's ten seconds ahead? Is it with some kind of telescope that can sebee around corners??

Seeing as being in front is no longer the best place to be, let's get of pole position. Or let's make P2 the new Pole Position. No, wait, let's call it Sebee position!

btw how many metres did your GT2 career last?



What are you talking about? With DRS hardly anyone sits in dirty air anymore. That was the point.

See my other post above. How many times have we seen exactly what I describe. Once the gap is reduced to a visible gap for the driver in tow - where he can see the gap to the car ahead - he is able to drive faster because he's getting reference data from watching the car ahead. Of course he still has to be mindful about his car's abilities. But he has a clear reference to chase after. This is why it's hard to lead. Because you have to put in perfection to not let chasers get a sniff. Give them a sniff, and they will chase you down.



Have you ridden a motorcycle? Have you driven a race car? Actual race ready car? GT2 ALMS car?

I have.

While I tell you I'm no expert driver you'd be fullish to think what I say is not true. Ever hear about "forcing the leader into a mistake"? How many times have you seen it in F1? Why does it happen? Re-read what I wrote above.

Yes, I absolutely think what Vettel did was well deserving of DOTD. I seem to not be in the majority in this case, but certainly not alone.


What are you Joking?. Ever heard of something called as Dirty air and what it can do to your tires and your handling?. Mate this is not Tour de france where the cyclist get an advantage by ridding pillion. Here we are talking about Aero dynamic machines and truly I think Vettel should not even be on the list of DOTD. When Hamilton, Alonso win they have to overcome a lot of difficulties with the car and the team whereas for Vettel he just needs to drive the car.


Comparing car and motorcycle racing is not the thing to do in a half serious motorsport discussion. Dear oh dear...

But seeing as you support Vettel for DOTD, everything is said already...


What was so excellent about Hamilton's race? Started 3rd and finished 4th. Only passed his teammate. Only threatened Webber due to Webber's RB8 losing KERS and he still couldn't overtake Webber. Hamilton had nothing for Vettel and Alonso. This wasn't a great race for Hamilton and McLaren.


So you are unwilling to recognize Alonso's performance and dismiss it due to the way his car is set up, yet you are willing to credit Vettel's performance as entirely his own and not the car's design?

It seems it is universally recognized that Alonso is manhandling that Ferrari to results that it does not sensibly belong by most standards.

I would say that Ferrari have matched the setup/gearing perfectly to the race circuit design. Meanwhile, Red Bull's RB8 design is obviously still top notch and is helping Vettel maintain his dominance, although there is still a lot to be said about the way he can pull away from Webber in the opening laps.

To me, the performance that Alonso is wringing out of the Ferrari is more impressive than Vettel streaking away in a dominant package, even if it is by a strong margin to Webber.


The red Bull design requires clear air for it to be the quickest car - with Vettel the clear leader, why would Webber try & fight him - shredding his fronts & slowing himself down. Seems to me that he gives sebastian the cushion so that he can then follow at the same speed, guaranteeing a high average speed & podium position. . .


Next time Usain Bolt blows away the competition make sure you guys vote for the #2 guy as Runner of the Day.

Logic: Oh sure, Usain was the fastest and he won with the new world record. But just look at how that #2 runner recovered from a late start to get back into #2 spot and also how he recovered from a mistake in preliminaries not having lane choice.

Makes perfect sense to me, in bizzaro F1 world.



I have the impression that Vettel is a bit like Massa. He can be very fast, but it needs a very good car and that suits his taste.

I think when the car suits the likes of Massa,he is as fast as Alonso. But Alonso is not only more complete, but also knows how to adapt and make the most ever.

When the car is not as good, we have seen that not only Vettel was faster than Webber but also that he made ​​mistakes. It may be lightning fast under optimal circumstances, but I dont know if he is a superclass. Certainly he is worse than Alonso and Hamilton



What makes you think it's all car? Where is Webber compared to Alonso? Has Alonso not had his way with Webber on many occasions? Is Webber rubish? I think not. As I keep saying, I just don't think you guys give Vettel enough credit for his abilities. I think it's a motivating force for him that he feeds from.


Sebee, everyone will take Vettel more seriously when he wins a championship without having a much better car than its rivals. Simply, nobody doubts that Red Bull has been a very easy car to drive and massively faster than its rivals in recent years. That certainly detracts from Vettel. It may be a superclass, but we can not be sure.


Sugar Water,

My point was not to compare the two individuals, but to compare the logic of voting for DOTD. It's simply an argument I'm trying to put forward to perhaps stir up some thought.

May I remind you also that Webber seems to have no problems keeping up with Vettel within good reason even in qualifying. Yet while Alonso seems to have little trouble with Webber, he's miles behind Vettel, because 10 seconds back finish in an F1 GP is miles. Which should make you and others wonder if your logic of dismissing Vettel with ease and giving all credit to the RB8 is correct. I'd argue it is not.

But to be honest, I think "Finger Man" - as you call him without considering it an insult - doesn't mind. Vettel is going about business, steamrolling his team mate and Alonso while everyone under estimates him.

Maybe everyone will take Vettel more seriously when he has 5 WDC? Or will it take 7 or 8?


If running shoes = racing cars in your world, then you're right. Unfortunately, car racing is man+machine, so in a world where there is never equal machinery between teams, there is always doubt as to who is the best driver. The result is much, much fodder to feed us, the fans, to fuel our subjective opinions, none of which are 'right', argue as we may.


massa said he didnt receive any new updates on this gp!! probably he was faster when on equal car scared the team


Perhaps the team hadn't had sufficient time to manufacture parts for both cars.

That being so maybe they chose to give the parts to the driver who has been consistently performing this season and who is still in the title hunt.


maybe it's because he received the updates last race in order to test them, which is why he was faster. (I personally agree with what you said, but it's just an idea).


74% for Alonso so far but yes, surely you are right and most of us are wrong, Alonso drove an awful race and Vettel, Hamilton and Senna did a much better job.

I personally don't think that it takes any skill not to overtake 🙂


Yeah yeah yeah. Look at the pumping that's happening on other sites. "Alonso had to drive 60 qualifying laps" says Dominicalli "Alonso not giving up"

Ehh..what was Vettel doing exactly? Looked to me like he knocked out PERFECT 60 quali laps - faster than Alonso, cleaner than Alonso. He did it all against himself, without losing focus, without droping a wheel wrong. Didn't look like he was giving up exactly either. Let's talk about focus, concentration, execution - when you've only got yourself for reference and you're trying to excel against yourself without errors.

Yeah, you guys are right. Vettel was not the DOTD. Now please continue with your sweet Alonso dreams.


@Sebee: Webber had a KERS problem if you did not notice. Don't tell me Alonso rocked it by nullifying what was a 6s lead at one point of time. Lose KERS in India in the main straight and you are a sitting duck.


@oak, Yeah, and every track is exactly the same.


Maybe Vettel is just faster than Alonso.

I'm not seeing Alonso have a hard time keeping up with Webber.


ah of course! I forgot the Ferrari was much faster then the Red Bull!


I agree about DRS assissted passes,but he overtook both Mclarens down the main straight on lap one, when DRS is unavailable. He also passed Lewis out of the next corner.

You may like to watch some of the races this year and see where Alonso overtakes people, he is one of the few who doesn't rely on outside manipulations.


He is itn the position to overtake because he has started well below pole, typically in P5....this makes him look like an "over taker" at the start.


I think Alonso. Vettel drove a flawless race and clearly had pace to burn, but he also had a clear track. Alonso managed to improve on his position and drove spectacularly well; even nicking the fastest lap from Mr Statistics himself.

I don't know what the Spanish for The Terminator is, but Alonso Just Will Not Stop. Speaking as a neutral I admire Vettel and his talent immensely, and I don't care if a driver wins title after title as long as they are good enough to earn it, but I want Alonso's efforts to be rewarded this season and I hope Ferrari pull a few tenths out of that car to make it come true for him.


Get your facts right Button snatched the fastest lap from Vettel


I think it was actually Alonso that snapped it from Vettel and then Button from Alonso...


Jenson Button got the fastest lap with a 1:28.203.

Bet Vettel wasnt happy about that! haha


Button got the fastest lap


"Listen, and understand. Alonso is out there. He can't be bargained with. He can't be reasoned with. He doesn't feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And he absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead"!!


Crikey! I'm very afraid now.


+1 Classic!


Actually button got fastest lap, but yeah there was some gamesmanship by all on the last lap. I can't wait until it costs someone a finish!


Jenson Button took the fastest lap on the very last lap of the gp


Alonso, of course. +3 with nice moves up the order.

Mentions to Senna (don't really understand why Grosjean is missing here, especially compared to Webber), Vettel and Hulkenberg. Pity Lewis did not make it to the podium, no reward therefore.


Alonso is building up a huge season. He deserves Championship, but man... The RB is just too much, I'm afraid.


Both Vettel and Alonso delivered. It's difficult to pick one as DOTD.

Maybe Alonso's first lap overtaking moves should put him ahead today.

Definitely, Alonso's been the Driver of the Season so far...



I think it's worthy of note that the Ferrari was the 2nd fastest car during the race though. Massa had the legs on Button (and would have surely caught Hamilton had he being able to pull a pass on the straight). That suggests Fernando should have taken 3rd; but throw in Webbers KERS issue and it's hard to say that Alonso over performed to a massive extent to take 2nd. His performance is what I've come to expect from him. Maximising the car, which is also what Vettel did.

How Mark Webber is even in the running for DOTD I do not know. Soundly beaten by his team mate all weekend, and even before his KERS issue Seb had left him for dead. Where's Massa in the list?

Alonso's comments about racing Newey as well are just as true for all other designers. Roll back 3 races and in Singapore McLaren had the fastest car and Ferrari had the fastest car prior to that in Italy, McLaren the two races prior to that, and Ferrari before that in Germany. The 'domination' of Red Bull is nothing like that suggested by some parts of the media. Italy & Spa 0.8s off the pace in qually, Hungary 0.5s off the pace. There are many parallels between Vettels performances in Spa, Hungary, Germany etc where he didn't have the quickest car and still got a half decent result and what Fernando has done in Korea, Singapore and India.

You won't see Fernando commenting about the above though; which is because he's a wiley old fox who knows what to say to apply pressure and the Newey card is just that. It reminds me of the kind of thing Rossi used to say of Stoner; now he's retiring suddenly the paddocks real view emerges that he's insanly fast and some can't understand how so. Moral of the story; take media quotes from these people with a pinch of salt, as the smart ones use the media to apply pressue. When people come out and say things like this it's a massive compliment, because they see you as a big threat. Perhaps the reverse is true also; if they say you're a great driver perhaps that means they think they've the beating of you all day long.

Alonso nicks DOTD because he had to do some overtaking.


I've said it before but I'll say it again, Alonso's comment was nothing more than another dig at Vettel.

People seem to think that Alonso is some Machiavellian mastermind but all I see is somebody who's ego is deeply scared by the fact that Vettel is very likely to go down in history as the dominant driver of this era.


I think it was actually a dig at the Ferrari engineers, Alonso's way of communicating that they are not as good as Red Bull's engineers and that they should do a better job at delivering him a car with which he can fight against Vettel.


Say no more whoever doesnt know this is basically wasting thier time and rather hopeful


Alonso. Hands down.


Who was my driver of the day? I don't know. To be honest I fell asleep.


luckily I recorded the race and saw the race in half the time.


I think it has to be Fernando, he is a magician at the moment. Take nothing away from Vettel, he drove a quite perfect race, but, he had the car for it.

Once again, we could say that Newey was the man of the day, but for driver, Alonso takes my vote.


"Take nothing away from Vettel..."

But that's exactly what you have done by implicitly dismissing his victory as merely the product of the car. This seems to be the common theme that is developing. I don't understand it. That's Formula 1, and if folk don't like it they should find another sport to follow. Since when did anybody win a championship in an inferior car? Why not just say "I don't like Vettel because he is beating my favourite driver" and leave it at that? That would be fine, but to try to dress it up using arguments about car superiority and innuendo about "rule stretching" is simply dishonest.

So, to all of the Vettel detractors, so that I can get an idea of what consitutes a "deserving" world champion on your scale, which driver's championship was the "most deserved" and why?


When there are two front row lockouts in a row, the car is playing a major role in Seb's recent victories. But with two WDCs and one along the way, Sebee is one of the best!


Yep. Vettel keeps beating my favourite driver, waaaahhhhh.....


Perez showed recently that he can't drive under pressure. Even Alonso making mistakes (he don't like to talk about them, but he didn't improve the qually lap when everybody did, and he made two mistakes when he began to push, Vettel didn't). Kimi, hmm, would be interesting to see Kimi and Seb in one team 🙂


"Would yield similar results."

We might as well not bother holding any world championship at all in that case. Just find out at the start of the season which car is quickest by having a single driver drive them all, and award the championship to the quickest. Might as well if the input of the driver is that irrelevant.

I don't see why it's "flawed logic" to suggest that the world champion is a good driver.

As to the others you mention: Raikkonen's not that great at qualifying, Perez doesn't really have the race craft (yet?), and Di Resta... I should support him, being a fellow Scotsman, but apart from driving round in the midfield nursing his tyres what has he shown he can do?



It's a fetid coctail of poor sportsmanship & sour grapes plain and simple.

Alonso et al...time to face the reality that your WDC hopes have been Sebotaged™.



Same applies here mate

Not so much we r Finger Man detractors but rather to suggest the Finger Man is that good is flawed logic. As suggested previously having the RB8 piloted by another good driver (Kimi/perez/diresta/etc) would yield similar results. That is the reality that u r unwilling to accept.


Very true, I agree with this.

I think the last time I saw a driver win the WDC who didn't have the best car was 2007 when Kimi stole it from the duelling McLaren pair (who probably just about had the better car, it was marginal though), prior to that 1995; but to do so Schumacher had to take Hill out of the race by ramming him, not something I want to see again really!

Lets get something straight here, the WDC wins by Alonso, Hamilton, Button, Hakkinen, all but 95 for MSC and yes Vettel all won with the best cars nothing else. That's Formula One, and it's no fluke that some of these guys always end up at the top (like Vettel, Schumacher, Alonso etc). They're pushing the teams, and making sure they do have the best car.


I agree with most of your points but I would argue that the Ferrari was just as good (if not better) than the Mclaren the year that Hamilton won WDC.

I also think that you are overestimating the importance of drivers creating the best car by pushing their team. Engineers are notoriously competitive animals and these guys are some of the greatest engineerig minds in the world, they have enough motivation to push themselves without the drivers needing to spur them on.


whom did Schumacher take out in 95? Aren't you mixing up 95 with 94?


Vettel, of course! He is the best F1 champion after Schumacher. (in modern times, of course).


Meh, i think you're out numbered in this poll.


Vettel would have to spend the weekend in a HRT and win from last spot on the grid to win the DotD here so that is hardly surprising.


In a car that's dominant.. Vettel is unbeatable. But if Vettel was at Ferrari this year, I doubt he'd have matched Alonso's tally of points.


Why? Look at race in Spa. And don't forget - Ferrari have very good launch system, when RBR have poor starts.


No-one would.


Isn't that funny.

Both great drivers, but you forget the most important part.

They have a massive over-spending organisation behind them when they were/are dominating.

Ferrari between 2000 and 2004 and RBR now.

They also had the best design group for their respective eras, Brawn and Byrne and now Newey.

It's commonly accepted that Vettel is one of the top 3 drivers in the world, but he is not the best. That RB8 though is astonishing.

Bring Back Murray

We had Alonso and Hamilton running together in the same team and there was pretty much nothing in it.

Until Vettel is partnered up with either Hamilton or Alonso we won't really know will we whether Vettel is the quickest or not


I stopped watching F1 in mid-2011 and Seb is one of my favourite drivers. It's not fun to watch boring wins no matter who is winning. Thanks to Alonso and to RBR's KERS, at least there's still some mathematical excitement left. You can rely on Fernando who I voted for as DOTD to cane that Ferrari but I'm hoping as the mileage on those engines, KERS and gearboxes pile up that we see a reliability issue in Seb's car soon and the WDC goes down to the wire in Brazil!


Glad you came back this year though eh?


It has to be Alonso. Sorry, but voting for others is a pure noncence in this case. Had Alonso started at least from 3rd, we'd probably have seen fight for victory and posible win.


Vettel was simply untouchable, and though Alonso drove a good race too, one can't be more perfect than Vettel was in this race, or in the past couple of races. Can't vote for anyone else.


you are a free man as are those who voted for Alonso:-)


Certainly. I was just referring to myself as the one who can't vote any other way for this particular race.


It can only be Fernando the Great...


Mark is a good driver but the fact that his RBR still took 2nd even with a KERs that malfunctioned for 2/3 of the race shows how superior that car is to the rest of the field. The only hope for Alonso is reliability problems for Seb's car.


Webber finished 3rd, Alonso 2nd!


Alonso was 2nd.


Alonso, of course. Serioulsly, do we really need a poll today?


Difficult to pick a winner, but Alonso was just on fire today; a double-overtake of the McLarens on lap one and incessant pressure on Webber to keep his championship hopes alive.

Regardless of who scores the most points this year, Alonso would be my "people's choice" for world champion, he has excelled expectations in practically every race this year.

Honourable mentions to Senna for a great drive too!


Hamilton fan but Alonso gets my vote - that he overtook both McLarens and a Red Bull to take second in THAT car is mightily impressive.


In THAT car? The Ferrari was easily the second fastest car on the track, not that far behind RBR, especially considering the straight line speed. Ferrari being clearly fastest at the end of the straights greatly helped Alonso to pass everyone.

The myth that Ferrari is slow should be forgotten. It was true for the first couple of races, but they have since returned to their proper level. RBR is still a bit faster, but not that much. Especially during the races the leading cars are fairly close to each other.


Yeah I don't get this. People basically decide of the season which cars are fastest and which are "dogs" and then never modify that view to fit with how the cars behave on whatever track is actually being raced on.


Yes, the Ferrari was faster than the McLaren on the options, but the McLarens came alive on the primes. By then though, it was too late.


Help me understand qualifying? If Ferrari had the 2nd fastest car why did they start 3rd row. Please no race pace story...... That is the easy way out.....

Let's be honest with each other please - solid car with a great driver


Alonso couldn't put in the fast time needed. He admitted as much. That's why!

Stop the nonsense. Webber is driving the RB8 too, what is Alonso doing to him? I think it's time you recognize that Vettel is fast, at very least as fast as Alonso.


Ferrari had better pace than the Macca's. Add this to their unreal launch system and better top end, beating the Macca's was what should have happened.


Gotta give it to Alonso. He drove the wheels off the ferrari as usual. He wont go down without an almighty fight. Go Alonso!


DOTD: Alonso

Honorable mention: Senna

Complaint: Is there a person at the top of this sport with motor-racing in their blood? 'Cuz I gotta say, with Vettel, Alonso, Hamilton & Raikkonen, we are squandering years of talent.

We all could be enjoying a "battle royale" between them at the sharp end, but the lack of competitive machinery is killing off the chance.

Smarter people than I must brainstorm and stop wasting the greatest asset F1 has. To wit, the talented drivers we all want to see.



That is F1, it is about teams performing, driver being a part of it.

If you want same spec cars for all, try GP2.


No. I'm talking about an over-reliance on aero. The balance has swung too far in that direction. They've fiddled with the engines, tires etc., no reason why they can't do so with the "dirty" air that creates a strategy for a "sprint" for the start and then a cruise to the checkered flag.



Alonso no doubt. Actually one could argue that regardless of the championship end result, win or lose, alonso has been the driver if the year.


Fernando Alonso - He needs to keep his head down and keep pushing though. He's showing too much frustration at the moment.


Anybody else waiting for the vettel fans to go mental that he hasn't won driver of the day again?

I voted for alonso, fantastic drive! Hard choice between him and Nico for me.


Vettel drives a perfect race, Alonso makes a mistake, and he gets the vote?

Cool story.


Tifosi logic. 🙂


Perfect example of having to earn your place/victory vs. sticking your ride in autopilot and coasting to the finish. Whatever r chaps like u gonna do when the Finger Man has to earn his win? He has driven so much from the front thanks to a great drive that I wonder about his overtaking skills outside the RB drive. Sweet memories mate.


The ammount of hyperbole over Alono's performance from the commenters on here is ridiculous. Second in the second fastest car doesn't really blow me away, particularly as Webber would have probably been second if not for KERS problems.

I don't remember reading comments like these about Vettel's far superior performance at Spa, in fact I believe that he didn't even win DOTD.


I really enjoyed your summary of the situation.


How much concentration and perfect execution did it take to lead 60 laps of perfection?

Stop it. Vettel is at least as fast as Alonso. Use Webber as equalizer in the comparison. Time you guys stop the denials and recognize reality.


How many risks took Vettel? How many actions carried out? How many times did he think about overtaking a car while going fast?.

Vettel leads always with clean air. The tires have less stress(fresh air, not to overtake) and have a car designed to perform well in these conditions.


I think Vettel fans will be just fine when they find a new hat under the tree with 3 TIME CHAMPION written on it this Christmas - from Santa of course for being good and patient and not stressing over DOTD results.


Senna's drive was pretty damn good too, but it has to be Alonso. However, they're going to have to do something about the middle sector of the track, as it spreads the cars out. Two years of the Indian grand prix: two turgid processions.


Amazing first lap from button, Hamilton and Alonso. Think it's Vettel's to lose but hoping for a couple more twists.


Alonso has been best driver since 2005, but last 5 years has not had a truly competive drive! Imagine how boring the races would be if he was in a red bull, which has been the quickest car since second half of 2009, Adrian newey has had too much influence on the WDC, and it's become tiresome, I feel for Fernando that he is a better driver than when he won the titles, the best driver should win it, lets hope so for the integrity of the sport!


One driver won the world championship in 2007 in a 3nd rate Ferarri in his first year. Fernando is brilliant but he is no better than three others out there ATM & unlike them he is earning €30m to drive the team forward with a 100% support - I think any driver would give his left nut for that chance- opportunity people!



surely the best driver would make a rookie team mate look like a rookie rather than a seasoned campagner with all the tools to command the attention of a lead driver?

And nobody can sensibly argue that his McLaren drive was not in a comptitive car!

As always being a good driver is not enough. I do agree about the comments about Newey though.


You should maybe start watching NASCAR me thinks.


This season the McLaren was the best car until Japan (excluding maybe 3-4 races before that), You should try watching the races.


sentimental choice

the HULK

Nicki Lauda is right when he says that McLaren should have gone for Hülkenberg rather than Perez

the young German is the best of the kids (well, in terms of experience, rather than age)

should he ever get a top ride, he will DEFINITELY become a World Champ

Tornillo Amarillo


Hulk is warming up for Ferrari later on.


Alonso was at his majestic best today; tenacious, relentless & very skillful (the three way battle with the McLaren's at the start was superb wheel to wheel action).

A special shout should go to Bruno Senna, who drove brilliantly all weekend.

Unless there is a sudden Red Bull mechanical meltdown, Alonso's efforts will not bring him what would be a well deserved WDC.


I voted for Senna because he did some fantastic overtaking manouvers. His moves, particularly on Maldonado, Rosberg and Kobayashi were well executed and shrewd. it was a pity though that he mucked up his quali lap and pit entry as otherwise he could have got better points. I think Alonso drove exceptionally but again he really should have qualified higher and challenged Vettel earlier if he wants to win this championship. Ultimately Alonso was probably driver of the day, but I voted Senna anyway because I like him better. To be honest Vettel just has to sit in that thing and it drives itself. Didn't see much of Hulkenburg today although he put in another good drive.


To select DOTD on a F1 site, based on who you like most sounds a little strange to me.

JA should make more clear of what DOTD should be about: Color of the hair, sunglasses, wrist watch or maybe even driving performance.


Hmm... That would probably explain why I seemingly always voted for a Williams driver, given the choice. That said, Senna at least had a race; Vettel had a sunday drive which was not terribly interesting to watch on the most part. To be honest I was really making a joke as I was struggling to find a reason to vote for Senna over Alonso. (Besides the fact that Senna made more overtakes.)


Plus 1. Senna impressed me. I still don't feel he should be in F1, but credit where it is due.


DOTD is not about liking someone n voting for him. Its about who was the best driver on the day. Gotta be Alonso


While watching Senna I appreciated how measured his moves were. He never risked a move for the sake of it, if he couldn't pass, just gave space and waited a better chance. Great racecraft, in comparison Maldonado moves looked clumsy.

As for the DOTD, well after lap 1 had to be Fernando, but this time Sebastian also made a perfect race.


He did early on in his F1 career...


Alonso, very good wheel-to-wheel action to get ahead of the McLarens and then was close enough to Webber to take advantage of the KERS failure.

Special mention to Hamilton's pit crew for probably the most impressive pitstop I've ever seen.


I think the credit for the wheel change should go to Hamilton not the crew. All the crew member had to do was push a wheel on (which when you watch it back wasn't particularly smoothly done) Hamilton had to remove the old wheel, select gears and control the clutch as well as concentrate on getting the perfect get away. Pretty impressive.



I'm not a fan by any means, but I can't say he wasn't best.


What, no votes for Button? lol


In my opinion Alonso don't really deserve the praise everybody is giving him. A few mistakes. Got 2nd because of a KERS failure. Got 3rd because Button and Hamilton were fighting like little kids and forgot about him and he had a car geared towards top speed. Just a standard drive. Nothing special. Massa could have done the same. Just more luck for Alonso.


It strikes me that yet again Vettel doesn't get the votes to be the driver of the day!

I don't have a problem with that since I'm a Ferrari fan and therefore voted for Alonso.

James just out of curiosity: when's the last time Vettel got voted Driver of the day if ever?



Alonso the Great.

Looks like if Ferrari is able to qualify 3rd (or better of course) Fernando will be fighting for the victories as the pace seems so good. I hope incoming updates work better than RB ones, fingers crossed...


Voted for Alonso. Now Hamilton out, I want Alonso to take WDC but my money is on Vettel. Red Bull car just looks untouchable. Webber seems to get all the gremlins otherwise that would have been easy 2nd for him.


webber said he had kers start to become a problem from lap he gets it.

was that the team to keep him from pressuring vettel near the end of the race?

the amount of mechanical niggles on his car, and not vettel's is crazy (yes we know vettel had two alternator's go, but add up the amount of gearboxes, diff issues, drs not opening, kers problems and strategy mistakes you gotta wonder what's happening on that side of the garage).


It is great to see Alonso fighting relentlessly with a weaker car. Reminded me of Michael Schumacher in his glorious days.

I never like Alonso because he it too political, complaints too much and can't take pressure from a strong team-mate.

However, I have voted him as DOTD as no one else on the list and on the track that day even comes close to his level of commitment. Especially at the start of the race where he fought so aggressively but never made contact! Note, this was not against some drivers. He was challenging Lewis Hamilton, who is arguably the most talented overtaker/defender.


Could not agree more


No real issue this time round.

Or this year, for that matter...

It can only be Mr 'Fantastic' Alonso


Vettel only gained positions by his superior straight line speed and by Marks KERS problem, no accomplishment of his own. Anyone, who can put a foot on the throttle, can overtake with that car, that's not sufficient to win DOTD. Um, no, wait, that was Alonso, he was brilliant.


This is the difference between autopilot vs overtaking. Surely u r able to see past "Red" and appreciate the dotd was fairly awarded


Fernando Alonso - Is the man 🙂

He's been the best driver all year.


I agree with Senna. he was probably the most dynamic driver in basically a follow the car in front race.


Alonso wins it over Newey... err I mean Vettel. It's a kind of silly comment, but the effect that he has over the world championship in the last few years is starting to get a bit weary. What has been an excellent three-quarters of a season with huge unpredictability is now heading to the biggest of anti-climaxes. Vettel has been largely anonymous all season until these last 4 races, whereas Alonso has grafted out a hugely mature season, winning races when he can and finishing high in the points or on the podium elsewhere. I don't even like Alonso, but I'm happy to admit he is the most skillful and complete driver currently racing and it is he, not Vettel who deserves to become a third time drivers champion this year.


Why isn't Grosjean on the list he did a fantastic job keeping himself out of trouble at the start of the race, fighting his way through the midfield and finishing in the points ahead of his team mate Kimi!


ahead of Kimi??? am i watching different races??


Umm... what? Last I checked, Kimi finished ahead of Grosjean.


Not sure but F1 is not exactly exciting any more is it..boring stuff.

It is all a bit ho hum - dull tracks, dull racing.


Alonso for providing some hope in a hopeless situation. I think next year is going to be like last year. More so with Lewis in a poor car. I better find something else to watch next year.


I thought this year's GT1 races were great and entertaining.


Thanks, but living in north America my options are limited. I really don't care for nascar or indy. I heard form my German friends that DTM is actually more entertaining than F1.


Maybe check out Australia's V8 Supercar Championship!!

Plenty of overtaking, great racing, and skillful driving to satisfy your craving. 🙂

PS. Alonso has won me over this year with his determination and skill. I hope Vettel has another DNF so we can watch him cry like the baby he is.


I watched DTM year ago - boring stuff. It is hard to overtake there, the strategy is the same for all. I didn't like it. But BTCC - that is the racing. Try it, watch one weekend and you'll like it.


I think it should be racer of the day instead of driver.

Driver of the day would allways be Vettel. No racing, just driving around a track in the lead with noone challenging him.

For racer of the day. They would have to do something lol


Vettel from pole to win with a dominant car.

Alonso from 5th to 2nd with the 2nd best car.

I don't see any competition, Vettel just drive, Alonso fights hard,


I don't think Alonso had the 2nd best car by any means.


None. It was so goddamn boring it put me to sleep. F1 seems to be doing that a lot these days.


and the Alonso fans comes out in droves...just as expected!!!!!


In a proportion of 7 to 1 to Vettel's fans?

In fact, your comment is only representative of the tendency of many of Vettel's fans to try and bend reality.



how about engine recources FA vs SV for 3 remaining races, has Ferrari some advantage in this regard?

However I don't think any from top teams have been impacted earlier for this issue.


Webber held off Alonso for a loooong time without KERS, then prevented a fast finishing Lewis from claiming the final podium position.

Mark had a second class car (KERSless) for almost 2/3 of the race and somehow he is not considered the driver of the day?


Has to be Alonso for the exciting overtaking moves on the opening lap and his overall race. Nando whipped the hell out of the horse and the horse maxed out.


Simply Alonso


Webber drove KERSless for the remaining two-thirds of the race and still managed to hold off Lewis for third.

In my opinion he was easily the standout.

Alonso lost the race due to Mark's defensive effort (without KERS).


It was interesting to see what happened when Stella informed ALO that VET was potentially having a problem, som 10 laps from the end. Suddently the Ferrari started to look very nerveus and was on several occations close to go off the track. A very good indicator that he actually was doing exactly what he said after the race he was doing, "driving at 120% for 60 laps". The car was, at the time of that radio transmission, already being driven right at the limit for what it ever could do - he tried to push it a small bit more...sorry cannot do, she said. Respect I say. Alonso


Or he simply can't drive it on the limit. And when he pushed to it he failed to do so.


Result and statistics suggest strongly that he certainly can.


Consistently beating your team mate, both in qualy and race (by a very big margin) is I guess the most acurate measure to answer your question, as no one really knows exactly what is the optimal time of the Ferrari on each circuit.

Since you do not want to see that very telling (qualy & race) score as an indicator, I cannot give you an objective answer, without research. I can, however, reason to the answer.

ALO has scored more points than HAM, BUT & WEB, if you combine the results from all races 2010-2012. All three drivers have had, during all these seasons, packages that have been faster(2010)-to-MUCH-faster (2011-2012) than ALO, as judged by the speed on low fuel. Maybe what some call "luck" can contribute in a couple of races, or against one single driver over many races, but if you beat three (3) top drivers (no Massa here) who drive faster packages than you and do that consistently over almost 60 races, you have to be able to drive on the limit. If you do not agree with this, then you are basically saying that ALO has the ability of beating these guys, in a packages ranging from equal-to-much-slower than them, without even being on the limit, which would not be very nice or flattering to those drivers. I guess you do not want to say THAT. Hence he can drive on the limit.


What statistics? can you provide that please and hope its not massa you are using as a yard stick



Abu Dhabi 2010 comes to mind.


Of the front runners Alonso seemd the most deserving making up ground as much as his car would let him. While Vettel ran his usual peerless race at the front his recent form is technically based in the improved performance of the Red Bull car. Hamilton had a good race, but did not have the pace really to match the Red Bulls or Ferrari, and it was only Webbers ailing KERS that let him have a late chance of the podium.


Hamilton' 5 wheel pitstop was one of the highlights of the day in my opinion. Never seen that before. Other wise it was a lack luster race.

Alonso has to be driver of the day. Put him in a RedBull and the WDC would have been all but over ages ago. Just amazing


OK James, how about some insight into this amazing blitz by RBR, to come from behind to so far in front is surprising, I'm always a little suspicious of sudden performance jumps rather than incremental as seems to be the case with all other teams


Webber had been catching Vettel at about half a second a lap for a few laps before his KERS fully died. Had it not died I think the poll results could have been quite different.


Alonso? Vettel? One drove a brilliant race on a car that is not on par, the other drove a brilliant flawless race from the front. I wish I could vote for both...

Senna and Hulkenberg had really good races too.


Hopefully they can both keep it up and aren't impacted by mechanical issues. Then we are really in for a show!



He is by far the best driver in this years field.

No wonder Seb wants to race him in a Ferrari


Alonso without question. Talented he is but Vettel could've jumped out during a pit stop and that thing would've won on its own. How many times is he being told to slow down, talk about overkill.


Vettel was untouchable all weekend, going into Q3 he had only done 8 laps whereas 12 or 13 was the minimum for the others.He made it look easy.

Vettel deserves it but I've gone for Senna, drove well and although only just pipped Hulkenberg for my vote.


I find it kind amusing how people tend to think that Vettel has always the car to thank for his drive.

Seriously, what has Vettel to do to become driver of the day? I mean I understand that people vote for Alonso as driver of the day today. Although I also understand you could pick Vettel as he did nothing wrong and he makes it look so easy.

But compare this Grand Prix with the Grand Prix of Belgium. Button leads from to start to finish and becomes driver of the day because of his superb drive while Vettel put an amazing drive from 11th to 2nd overtaking several cars during the race.

Today Alonso is picked as driver of the day for his storming through the field drive from 5th to 2nd while Vettel today actually did the same as Button did in Belgium. And you can't even compare the drives of Alonso and Vettel to 2nd.

I seriously think, but haven't checked that Vettel has never been elected as driver of the day. Which for me is total nonsense given the high level he is driving constantly.


It's also worth noting that that "dog" of a Ferrari was probably the second fastest car for this track, and really not that far off the Red Bull's pace in the race. But of course that doesn't fit the narrative.


if vettel wins a race starting 6th or lower, he should be DOTD.


I completely agree, there certainly is some bias in the readership of this blog, but that's sports and fans. Luckily it's not that serious. 🙂


Alonso all the way, voting for anyone else is madness. We are watching one of the all time great's at the moment, Alonso is the best driver of this day and age. There is no doubt about it


Yes very well said Quillan rogers

We are indeed wathcing the greatest driver in the history of F1 - Alonso




Another typical DotD vote.

Driver of the weekend: Vettel, no doubt – Flawless result in the fastest car, any less would've been tragic (c.f. Webber).

Driver of the day...I'll pick Alonso. The only one in the race with any competitive racing.

Honorary mention to Massa, but then again Lotus' just isn't fast enough to overtake.


I was split between Alonso and Hamilton - I don't think the Ferrari was *that* bad on pace that FA was performing miracles, but he still put in a storming drive to get passed the McLarens and then make the most of Webber's completely unsurprising KERS issue.

LH on the other hand had a bad start but then got back past Button, then had downshift issues and poorer pace on the softs than the three cars in front of him. That after his pitstop he started to reel Webber in at the pace he did, and was perhaps one lap away from the podium, speaks volumes about his speed when he gets the bit between his teeth.

So, close between them for me, but I went for Hamilton because it looked like he had a lot more issues to battle against. Either way though, what an incredibly boring race!


Vettel, he won the race and will win the WDC.

Alonso has a dodgy car to qulaify with, but yet again, has a car with very good race pace, but as ever, fans who wish to project the image that the car is terrible all the time, when it clearly is not.


James, why do you have to caveat Hamilton's overtake of Button with the fact that it was done with DRS?


Has to be Fernando. I'm still surprised people are banging on about the F2012 being no good when you get Fernando on the podium and Felipe in 5th with not all the updates as on Alonsos car. A few times this year now we see a car trailing two car fighting for position and the car behind get this massive "wind tunnel" like effect that was clearly evident with Fernando on the Lewis/Jenson. Then the driver behind thinks he's king shit. The way all three drove there was outstanding and was the highlight of the race for me.

Did anyone see the overtake Lewis did on Jenson- it wasn't shown was it ???.


My recollection is it was shown - it was just a DRS manouevre, nothing special. JB seemed to be a bit of a sitting duck at that stage of the race.


Fernando Alonso. The guy just battled and battles the whole way. Like he has done at pretty much every race this season. Don't count him out...however strong Red Bull appear to be!

Elsewhere, Nico Hulkenberg drove well, though a lot of the hard work was done by a very good start, he then kept up the pace to pick up good points. Bruno Senna's racecraft was good; Bruno's qualifying may be poor, but some of his Sunday drives have been pretty damn good actually. I'd put this one up there close to his efforts in Malaysia and Hungary.

Copybook from Sebastian Vettel, who certainly likes the Buddh International Circuit. He'll probably be forced to race in a buggy next year...and may still pick up some points!


Dear James,

Speaking of reliability, do we know where the top 8 drivers, stand in terms of Engine Usage.

8 Engines to last over 20 races.

Alonso has practically saved 2 race distances (Spa & Suzuka) both quite hard on the engine. This is the only advantage that can be gained from being taken out in the first corner / first lap.

This could be a blessing in disguise.



I wonder which of Lewis Hamilton or the McLaren team will be most regretting their separation mid-way through next season.


Process of elimination.

Personally I'm not sure that Hamilton is a contender. Not that he did anything wrong but he didn't really do anything spectacular either, and finished in the same position as that in which he started.

Webber too gets dismissed - 3rd is good, but not when you are in arguably the best car and you started second. Vettel can go too. He drove superbly as ever, but it's difficult to provide excitement when you're already at the front. This is why the Schumacher/Ferrari years were so dull.

Which leaves us with Senna, Hulkenberg and Alonso.

All three put in solid performances. But I'm going to give it to Senna. Recovered from his mistake in qualifying to score himself some points at a time when he was under pressure to do so.


It has to be Alonso.


I actually feel genuinely upset about the prospect of Vettel winning the title. Nothing agianst him as such, but I think anyone with a romantic streak about this sport is surely rooting for Alonso at the minute.


Totally agree - although the true romantic would want Raikkonen to get it this year, if not him, then Alonso.

Looking at both these drivers, one thing has united them - consistancy in a car that is not the quickest.

I cannot remember any commentary this year that has said "Vettel has finished higher than the car has deserved". He has undoubted skill and executes the tactic "Qualify at the front; hammer first couple of laps; then pace it" perfectly.

Yes, this takes skill. But think Vettel misses the extra ingredient of over performing in an under performing car.

Alonso has done this, consistently. Just look at the performance differences between him and Massa for the majority of this season. And for anyone who now says Massa has the edge on Alonso, just look at who has the most to loose for a mistake at this point in the season (now Massa has his contract sewn up!).


I feel Alonso's performance was flattered by Webber's KERless car that was 80hp down on power.

Webber would have finished ahead of Alonso. Red Bull and Seb may well pay the price for running KERs with such fine margins for error.

That and the unproven alternators may be the recipe for a season ending Red Bull meltdown.

Ferrari's slow but rock solid reliable car could be the tortoise that beats the hare.


Because this season is comming to a point where Seb and Alonso are being hammered relentlessly by the opposite camp, as an Alonso fan i would like to say that although I think Alonso does deserve this championship, Vettel is doing one hell of a season as well. The ferrari is not a bad car at all, and at present is slightly ahead of mclaren and only lacks quali pace to face RBR. What I think is fair to say is that when RBR was not dominant this season and was going through a rough patch, Vettel was good but not outstanding, more or less doing the same as webber: it's the front grid lock outs which favour Vettel's driving style, and I think he's practically unbeatable in that circumstance.


Massa is a joke: drives three vaguely decent races, signs the contract and goes straight back to lethargy! With the blessing of the despicable Domenicali who should try to produce a decent car as a change.....and stop losing championship fetr championship with the best driver availble and the most generous budget.


Massa had 'critical' levels of fuel for the majority of the race and was on pretty much an economy drive...


I do belive Massa did not have some of the updates on the car that Alonso did. Nothing wrong with his performance whith this considered.


Vettel has at the moment the best car for qualifying. The Ferrari and Red Bull were close in the race. Vettel grabbed the pole with Webber's mistake. Mark seemed to have an edge here over Vettel, but couldn't make it stick when it mattered. Vettel drove away, making his tires last laps longer than others. Had Alonso qualified on pole, I would have expected him to win the race. I can see why so many voted for Alonso, but I have to go with Vettel since he won. They both were close. This will be an exciting end to the season!


Err... wait. Sebastian Vettel "Arrived in India having led every single lap of the last three races to assume the championship lead."

Unless I missed a race, I'm pretty sure Hamilton was leading Singapore for 22 laps.

Vettel is fast, there's no doubt about it-- but his speed seems dependent on clean air.

Overall, the race was boring enough that I nominate David Hobbs for DOTD.


Hobbs was a very quick driver in his day.

Quite fiery, too.

Tornillo Amarillo

It is MASSA for me.

He holds Kimi for almost the whole race, having fuel problems, arriving 6th for valuable points in the constructor championship for Ferrari and getting points from McLaren

Tornillo Amarillo

(from McLaren in the WCC, not the race)


After a spectacular opening season with 7 different winners towards a thriller finish with the ultimate battle; man against the machine, that is offcurse Alonso Vs RB8. What a season..!!


It HAS TO BE Alonso.

Yesterday he drove the wheels off that Ferrari. Regardless of how well Vettel is driving (which he is), it doesn't seem he needs to dig so deep, that's why people is not voting him.

I loved the detail of Vettel, then Alonso then Button doing the fastest lap on the last lap. Both FA and JB knew it would hurt SV a little bit and went for it.


Hey mate, is it just me or might u sense that it is always poor Mark with some kind of failure on his car? Something not right here.....


I made a comment a while ago that Red Bull would develop their car to suit Vettel's driving style and that seems to be the case.

Not saying Red Bull are deliberately disadvantaging Webber but the developments have made Vettel faster comparatively.

Webber was brilliant to hold off Hamilton without KERS.

Alonso showed his usual genius - love watching him.

But how can you go past Vettel when he dominates the race like that? I don't like the finger boy any more than others BTW.

Also should mention Ricciardo. His lap times were top 10 pace and way faster than JEV.

Hope he's getting noticed.


Charles Pic was my driver of the day. Stayed in touch with the Caterham's and thoroughly beat Timo Glock.

Webber done a better job than he gets credit for, if KERS is really 0.4 of a second per lap as they say he lost 18 seconds over the period he was KERSless. That's not even taking into account brake balance and tyre degeneration based on it.


It should be Massa. This is the pinnacle of the motorsport and all you have to do, is to drive like devil to get the maximum result. BUT... to hold yourself back, as the way Massa can, requires different level of mindset, and to do it constantly, it`s just heroic. In this team, everybody expects the best results only from Alonso and he feels it. So, theres no other way than only perform. to look it like that, he`s got needle in his rearend and combined with all the effort from his team, i don`t feel it`s very hard to deliver.


Webber drove the wheels off the car to hold out Hamilton. 80 Hp down and also the weight disadvantage.

Mark Webber is a far more talented driver, (a real racer), than Vettel. Alonso deserves to be champion for 2012, but Vettel will hold the title for the third time, due to the RBR Team behind him. Webbers development of the car and Adrian's genius are the reason Vettel is so successful.


It's not 80hp down *and also* the weight disadvantage - just 80hp down (and that only for up to 6.67secs a lap)- no weight disadvantage as everyone is carrying the same weight.

But I agree Webber did a decent job.


Not 6.67 - I think you meant to say .67. Most engineers are quoting .4 second and car/ brake balance issues.


Webber gets my Driver of the Day vote.

Webber lost so much time having to fight the lack of kers from lap 19/20, not to mention all the other issues that comes from kers failing, like break balance, etc. He was still able to get a podium.

Vettel pulling away from pole doesnt put him above Mark in any way. Clean air in front so better aero. Better aero leads to less wear on tyres. Less wear on tyres means can go faster for longer.

To be honest, I think the current tyres play way too much a part of each race, with drivers only able to challenge each other for a couple of laps at a time, till they have to back off to reduce tyre wear so that they dont gimp their strategy.

I like the pit stops caused by the tyre wear, but not the other side effects that come from that.

Bjornar Simonsen

I just really think that Alonso deserves to get the victory this year because of the way he has driven these past three years.

It must really be hard on ones phyche to push so incredibely hard for so long and get so close without really getting it.

I can understand the frustration he seemingly has now because this year it seemed as he would finally be rewarded for his insane effort, but was then taken away for no fault of his own.

Now RBR has figured out how to be fast again and the WDC seems to be over...

Vettel is one of the best, but not yet THE best. For that he needs to show he can win without the best car, more than once.



If you do an Alonso vs. Vettel driver comparison you'll probably set a comments record. Include a poll to see how many fans of each are here. It will be a great way to fill in a gap between GPs! Seems there are some passionate fans on here.


Sebee do you think people are not voting for Vettel because they like Alonso more? or Hamilton more? or any other Driver more?


or perhaps, they genuinely do not think his performance warranted the DOTD title, and maybe, just maybe, your own perception of his abilities are clouding your own judgement?

As mentioned many times, I'm sure if you see Seb start from the middle upwards of the Top Ten and win the race from there, or climb to the podium, then I would put money on the table that he would get the votes.


Fans here know their F1. I think they vote with knowledge. Big part of their DOTD vote is entertainment value. Obviously a driver leading flag to flag is not as entertaining to watch as one who cuts through the field. But one should not dismiss that effort up front. I find it a bit surprising that Vettel never gets credit for this. I find it even more surprising because other driver have gotten the vote with such a dominating GP performance. Thats really my point. And also the fact that as fast as some may think Alonso is, I don't believe he has magic pixy dust in his race suit pocket. I think Vettel, Kimi, Lewis, Schumi, even Button are in the same elite club of drivers.


You are certainly one of the passionate ones. Which I like, because it compensates for all the Vettel bashing around here 🙂


Alonso is my driver of the day, he followed webber for a bit - kept in touch, and, if you watched closely at some point he said 'right im having him ' and turned up the wick, dam he was kicking the dust up using the track and some, ok webber had a problem but he was almost allways a foot inside the track. Alonso just drives the nuts off that fezza his amazing, the only other driver out there that can do that is hamilton.


James... I love your site, but your comment sections are starting to turn into a shambles. This one, for example, is a handful of posters who think they're right and are trying to browbeat everyone else to their point-of-view instead of respecting opinions. Any way of combatting this?


Christopher, clearly there are passionate fans here exchanging opinions /arguments if you have an opinion on the subject matter- make it. Otherwise you can just exclude yourself- but criticising everyone including the messenger really doesn't help


I think DOTD is by its nature a debate about which driver did the best job, so these kinds of comments are what you get and you have to let people have their say

We moderate them carefully on the site to keep the standard high.


One thing I've wondered about DOTD is - is it confined to *race day* (as the name would suggest). I ask as often the narrative refers to qualifying and practice (and the comments also do).

An e.g. - how to treat a driver who has a shocker in qualifying but an immense race. Do we ignore the qualifying? Might the shocking qualifying even increase the driver's prospects of DOTD as such a driver has a greater ask on race day?

If it is DOTD (rather than DOTW) presumably it is skewed *against* good qualifiers. Maybe that feeds into the Vettel debate?

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