The influential Italian sports paper Gazzetta dello Sport has today published its rankings of the F1 drivers for the season so far.
The Italian media is very fond of what they call “pagelle”, which are marks out of 10 after every event. It’s a well established part of Italian sports media coverage and has been copied here and there in the UK media and elsewhere.
But in Italy it carries a bit more weight. So it is worth reporting and considering to see whether readers here on JA on F1 agree with their marks.
It’s also interesting to compare with their marks last year.
For example last year, Alonso came out with a 10, due to having won three races in an open season; this year he merits an 8, with the mistake in Malaysia weighing him down. Meanwhile in a stark assessment of Ferrari’s other driver, Felipe Massa was at the bottom of the table last year, this year he is close to it, keeping company with Vergne and Pic one point ahead of Gutierrez.
Top of the class this year is Sebastian Vettel with a perfect 10, whom Gazzetta compare with Alain Prost – whose four world title Vettel may match come the end of the season.
The citation reads: “This year he seems like Alain Prost, when it seems the right moment to settle, he does so without trying to win at all costs. He’s running away with it and it’s hard to imagine him not getting a fourth title.” It’s an interesting view, given that in Malaysia he couldn’t stop himself from trying to win, especially with Fernando Alonso out of the reckoning that day.
Kimi Raikkonen is second with 9, credited with having reinvented himself after running out of steam with Ferrari in 2009. One mark against him for not mastering qualifying this time around.
Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg are tied on 7 points, Hamilton pulled down by having taken time to get on top of the tyres. It describes his Hungary win as a turning point. Rosberg gets credit for matching Hamilton on the whole and winning two races.
Jenson Button gets a nod with 6.5, due to extracting points from “one of the worst McLarens in history”.
Here are the ratings:
7 Hamilton, Rosberg
6.5 Grosjean, Button, Di Resta
6 Hulkenberg, Webber, Bianchi
5.5 Ricciardo, Maldonado, Bottas, Sutil, Perez
5 Massa, Vergne, Pic
4 Gutierrez, Van der Garde, Chilton
Do you agree? Give us your mid season driver rankings in the comments section below. We will pick one response at random later this week and they will win a limited edition JA on F1 T shirt (for more information click JA on F1 T Shirt