Who was the best driver of 2008? (Poll)

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Vote for the best F1 driver of 2008

You’ve read my verdict on the drivers of 2008 – now it’s time for yours. Who was the best F1 driver this year? Cast your vote below…

Who was the best F1 driver of 2008?

  • Anthony Davidson (0%)
  • Takuma Sato (0%)
  • Adrian Sutil (0%)
  • Giancarlo Fisichella (0%)
  • Jenson Button (0%)
  • Sebastien Bourdais (0%)
  • David Coulthard (0%)
  • Kazuki Nakajima (0%)
  • Rubens Barrichello (0%)
  • Nico Rosberg (0%)
  • Nelson Piquet Jnr (0%)
  • Mark Webber (0%)
  • Timo Glock (0%)
  • Jarno Trulli (0%)
  • Sebastian Vettel (5%)
  • Heikki Kovalainen (0%)
  • Nick Heidfeld (0%)
  • Fernando Alonso (22%)
  • Robert Kubica (40%)
  • Kimi Raikkonen (2%)
  • Felipe Massa (11%)
  • Lewis Hamilton (17%)

Total Voters: 1,405

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Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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54 comments on “Who was the best driver of 2008? (Poll)”

  1. Lol Hamilton 100%. Guess I just came right on time ;)

  2. Giving this one to Alonso.

  3. Has to be Kubika.

    And I hope his polish supporters come in huge number and ensure that he wins; like some earlier poll.

  4. Alonso made far too many mistakes at the start of the season to be the best driver. Kubica should get the vote.

  5. @Sumedh: Would love to see a poll war between the Spanish and the Polish. Both are equally nationalistic in their support. I wonder who would win.

  6. Alonso. A close second would be Kubica.

  7. I thought Alonso wasn’t great during the middle of the season (see this weeks Autosport) but I also thought Kubica tailed off in the last two races too much so… then I thought of Felipe at Silverstone and Fuji and Hamilton at Canada, Fuji & Magny-Cours… So, I gave it to Vettel!

  8. Internet: See this is why my vote is to be trusted. My country hasn’t produced a decent F1 driver in my lifetime, so I’m pretty unbiased in that respect. No nationalism fogging my judgement down (although one might argue stupidity is, durrr).

    Giving it to Vettel because he put in a few stellar drives late season seems pretty silly to me.

  9. I thought his drives were always consistantly good and I don’t think the accidents at the start of the season were his fault (if I recall correctly). It was not just a race like Monza, it was topping qualifying sessions on pure pace at Valencia, it was showing a maturity that I don’t normally see in racers so young (eg. Hamilton or Sutil) and it was not having any particularly obvious mistakes such as Alonso, Kimi, Felipe and Lewis or indeed having any such poor performances like Kubica in Shanghai and Interlagos.

    Its maybe not the obvious choice given his championship position but I thought it was a great season-long performance from someone who was still essentially a rookie – I felt someone had to vote for him…

  10. Oh, one last thought, seems like voting for Alonso would also be giving it to someone with a few stellar drives late in the season!

  11. Kimi Raikkonen, his ten laps proved his still has the fastest race pace and him slowing down for Massa shows Massa is nothing more than a hotlapper. If Ferrari had of fixed his problems instead of focusing on Massa, he probably would be still champion.

  12. I think Alonso is the best driver but Hamilton put in the best drives.

  13. This is a tough one, you could easily make a case for several drivers.

    Hamilton produced some of the best drives of the year like at Silverstone. But then he also made some of the biggest mistakes of the year such as Canada.

    Massa improved a lot on previous years, but his drive at Silverstone is a big minus.

    Kimi lack of motivation and form for most of the year must count him out, even though he did show flashes of his old pace.

    Kubica, he was rightly praised his consistency which kept him in the title race so long, but then some have asked how would he have performed with the pressure of being expected to win which Hamilton and Massa had all season. Personally I think that if it hadn’t been for Heidfield’s problems in qualifying I think the BMW drivers would have been a lot closer in the championship.

    Alonso showed the skills why he is considered by many to be the best all round driver package in F1 at the moment with his two superbly taken wins. I view which I share also.

    Vettel’s win in the wet with Torro Rosso will go down in F1 history not just because of his age, given a competitive car I am sure he could challenge for the championship in the next few years.

    In the end I chose Hamilton, a decision influenced by him being my favourite driver of the contenders

  14. The best this year was Hamilton. He won the championship.

  15. Massa. No questions.
    Yeah, I’m a Pole

  16. Alonso. He made some mistakes (Monaco), but it’s because, like Hamilton, he pushed. They are racing drivers. They are not meant to go for the safe result all the time. Hamilton played it safe at the right time this season. So I would rate him second to Alonso, rather than giving Kubica the 2nd ranking.

  17. It has to be Massa — he won the most races.

  18. Alonso..no doubt about that
    and Internet, I am no spanish!!
    Simply because he made less mistakes than the championship contenders, took a couple of great wins.
    And he actually made R28 look competitive towards the end of the season. That he scored more than anyone in last six races says it all

  19. i thought the WDC was settled earlier in the month – anyway seeing that the Times got it all wrong, let me confirm that Lewis was my man – 2nd year pressure in F1 and he takes it amidst team and personal mistakes as well a FIA bias. It will only get easier from here on

  20. Keith, just curious – when a driver is referred to as best all round, what does that really make him ie what does best all round driver really mean?

  21. when a driver is referred to as best all round, what does that really make him ie what does best all round driver really mean?

    In my book, a good all round driver is:
    – fast in qualifying
    – relentlessly fast in races
    – fast in the dry
    – fast in the wet
    – a good overtaker
    – a firm but fair defender
    – good on strategy before and during the race
    – gives good technical feedback
    – behaves in a way that inspires and motivates his team
    – has total dedication to winning
    – doesn’t make very many mistakes

    There’s been a lot of talk this year about Fernando Alonso being the most complete driver in the field, because he ticks most or all of the boxes above. Probably not as out and out fast as Lewis Hamilton or Kimi Raikkonen, but he’s consistent and gives good technical feedback. During the Japanese GP he was making strategy calls, i.e. shortfilling to jump Kubica and then driving a stint full of qualifying laps to pull out a gap. Kubica has also been a good all rounder this year too. Hamilton a bit less so but he’s got plenty of time to learn.

    Juan Pablo Montoya wasn’t a good all rounder – very fast, great overtaker but awful technically, not a team player and not enough commitment. Jarno Trulli is a great qualifier but (especially in his early career) he fade in the race – he can be stunning quick over one lap but not fifty.

  22. @Nirupam:

    Alonso made mistakes in Monaco and Canada. As for him scoring more points than anyone in the last 6 races, Button had the same thing going in 2006 but that didn’t make him the best driver of 2006.

  23. the best driver wins almost every time so i think this is Hamilton

  24. TommyBellingham
    21st November 2008, 19:19

    Vettel or Hamilton

  25. So hard to make a choice. In my opinion it has to be one of the most gifted generation ever.

    After an hesitation, i’d vote for Vettel as he reached a rank that was never expected from him considering the material he’s had this year. And proved some maturity as well. He’s been spectacular in the wet and showed real skill and some extra spark when needed.

    But again, I wish we could list three or five dirvers instead of choosing just one :-)

  26. I know I’ve chosen a strange one, but I based my vote on who drove closest to their maximum ability the most consistently, taking out the speed and quality of the car, teammates and team. Roobs, closely followed by Koobs.

  27. I am a Heidfeld supporter but,Alonso impresses the hell out of me…..he got my vote but,not before I hesitated my little cursor to tick the box for Vettel.

  28. Alonso. Don’t confuse lack of results (in the first half of the season) with a driver not wringing the neck of that car & getting everything he could out it – plus a bit more.

    Look at what other drivers did with inferior machinery. Zip. In fact some in better cars didn’t fare much better.

    Not the fastest guy out there, but certainly the best IMO.

  29. @Internet,
    Alonso did make mistake in Monaco, in CAnada it was more of a mechanical fault. But the way he transformed R28 from being a midfield pack to front runners is amazing!

    And also..if i am not wrong in the first half some guys here started questioning the technical capabilities of alonso. Are you guys still there?? ;)

  30. HounslowBusGarage
    22nd November 2008, 8:23

    Silly, detailed query.
    But why does the blue bar under Nakajima’s name (0 votes) look bigger than the bar under Barrichello with 2 votes? Actually, when I look more closely, seems that way for Button, Fisichella and others too.

  31. i wouldnt even consider choosing massa or hamilton. they have made too much mistakes.

    i was thinking of vettel, alonso and kubica, and finally decided on kubica.

    then i saw there’s a lot of people here who already thought of vettel, alonso and/or kubica.

  32. Something goes wrong in this poll, if you see the results, F Alonso has 178 votes and L Hamilton 172. But you say Hamilton wins….

    ps: I voted for Hamilton not for Alonso

  33. I think it isn’t saying Hamilton wins, it says you voted for Hamilton, if you’re talking about Hamilton being in a bold typeface.

  34. My vote goes to Felipe Massa as best overall driver of the year and for several different reasons. To begin with his first two grands prix of 2008 were disasters, complete disasters.
    There were lots of people who were suggesting that Massa should be replaced quickly, which only fuelled the speculation surrounding Fernando Alonso’s relationship with Ferrari. Infact, Alonso himself turned the screw in the press following the Sepang race, suggesting that Massa was ‘feeling the pressure’.
    Then, began the turnaround. In seven years, I have never seen Kimi Raikkonen beaten so badly by a team mate, and that list is quite impressive.
    Heidfeld, Coulthard, Montoya, De La Rosa. Not one of those highly rated drivers put Raikkonen to the sword the way Massa did this season, carrying Ferrari championship challenge alone in the fight against McLaren.
    Along the way, there were terrible errors from the Brazilian. Silverstone was without a doubt Massa’s worst drive of the year, worse than even Sepang.
    Yet he came within one corner of being the first Brazilian champion since Senna back in 1991. Not bad at all for a so called understudy!

  35. I voted Felipe Massa.
    I remember the Hungria race that Massa passed Hamilton and Kovalainen in start. In Hungria is very difficult the passing and Massa did.

  36. I voted Sebastian Vettel. Time will prove me right

  37. Kubica!!!Only Kubica!!!

  38. really hard to pick…
    the driving overall excluding the pit context can be: massa, kubica or alonso… hamilton, well he lacks a bit courtesy in driving if u ask me :p

  39. I look at the season and each driver had ups and downs, but Hamilton was on top in terms of combining consistency and success in one envelope. Alonso also had a good campaign- esp. considering what a hunk of junk the R28 was early in the season, but I still don’t think he outclassed Lewis. vettel also was great, and kudos to Heidfeld for (almost) finishing every Grand Prix this season.

    – Zebra (#9): What country are you from?

  40. Holy cow, even “decimated” drivers like Kovalainen, Piquet and Bourdais get votes?

    I can understand that people could rate a guy in a slower car higher than the WDC. On the other hand, if a driver gets annihilated all season by his team mate (with the same material), how can the guy on the wrong end of the ass wooping be “the best”?

  41. vettel was the extreme hero

  42. I’m form Poland so I can’t choose Kubica, because it will be too simple, heh. I think that the best driver in this season was Alonso – he’s got worse car than McLaren,, Ferrari and BMW, but he won twice so he proved that drivers skills are more important.

  43. it’s Robert Kubica

  44. Koo-bit-sa is THE BEST :)

  45. Two days ago, Alonso was asked this same question and he said Kubica. So he agrees with you guys. :)

  46. Robert Kubica and Fernando Alonso ;-)

  47. Lucky isn’t it that the WDC is not elected :) It is a good thing the best driver is still determined on the race track by scoring the highest points rather than getting the most votes. I mean, Times voted Alonso, now you guys vote Kubica – don’t you see there must be something wrong in your voting if your method does not produce the same results as the generally accepted technical method as adopted by FIA.

  48. The WDC is heavily influenced by the quality of the driver’s cars and to a lesser extent luck (If the rain had held of for 1 minute longer at the end of the race in Brazil who do you think would be WDC?).

    Its perfectly legitimate to speculate who is the most skilled/drove the best races given the car that they we’re in. Lets face it the WDC gave us a man who has trouble with red lights for a champion. Even I can stop at red lights.

  49. Yeah, uhuh; While I agree the penalty was too harsh, he cutted the chicane, gained an advantage, let Raikkonen pass, only to be in raikkonens slipstream, gain advantage and pass him

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