Vote for your 2012 Korean GP driver of the weekend

2012 Korean Grand Prix

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Which F1 driver had the best race weekend in Korea?

Compare all the drivers’ performances below and vote for who you think was the best driver of the Korean Grand Prix weekend.

Korean Grand Prix driver-by-driver

Red Bull

Sebastian Vettel – Another crushing performance secured his third win on the trot and the lead of the drivers’ championship. Pole position looked like a formality until he got too close to Massa on his final run and had to settle for second. But as in 2011 he was quickly into the lead at the start. He locked up heavily on the in-lap at the end of his second stint so the team responded with repeated warning about the state of his tyres during the final stint.

Mark Webber – Snatched pole position from Vettel but didn’t got off the line well enough to keep the lead. From there on he was in a race for second and he kept Alonso well out of range.


Jenson Button – The yellow flag during qualifying didn’t help his cause but he was at risk of missing Q3 without it. Could have had an interesting race starting from 11th on soft tyres, but was hit by Kobayashi at turn three and had to retire.

Lewis Hamilton – Car set-up problems gave him a headache during practice, and not for the first time this year. A strong late effort in qualifying secured third but he spent the race slipping back from there. The process was hastened first by a broken rear anti-roll bar, then an extra pit stop due to increased tyre wear caused by the problem, and finally by a piece of Astroturf which got stuck to the side of his car. Having faced all that, a point was a triumph.


Fernando Alonso – Best of the rest behind the Red Bulls. Alonso made a serious effort to go after Webber in the final stint, but just couldn’t find any more pace in the F2012.

Felipe Massa – Over three-tenths of a second off Alonso in qualifying but only two places behind him on the grid. Squeezed past Raikkonen at the start and later passed the struggling Hamilton. After that he was warned not to get too close to his team mate. This was the first weekend in a long time that Massa had a genuine chance to finish in front of Alonso on merit but he isn’t the rooster in this team.


Michael Schumacher – Schumacher made it into Q3 but rarely figured in the race: “We didn’t manage to get the tyres working properly over the race distance, which made for inconsistent lap times, and accounted for our step back in performance.”

Nico Rosberg – Out-qualified his team mate but was eliminated at the start by another driver for the second race in a row.


Kimi Raikkonen – Raikkonen was the only one of the two Lotus drivers to use their new Coanda exhaust. This produced a quicker lap time at the expense of some straight-line speed, which was evident in the difficulty he had overtaking Hamilton. That cost him some seven-and-a-half seconds, without which he might have given the Ferraris a harder time.

Romain Grosjean – No Coanda exhaust for Grosjean, whose brief this weekend was to stay out of trouble. This he did with a circumspect drive to seventh place, electing not to try anything too risky while battling for position with Hulkenberg.

Force India

Paul di Resta – Blamed traffic for failing to reach Q3 with a car he admitted had top-ten pace. Started on the soft tyres, which didn’t last long enough, then had trouble with graining on the super-softs. Came in 12th, a long way behind his team mate.

Nico Hulkenberg – Was very pleased to split the Lotuses for sixth place. He lost position to Grosjean following his second pit stop but took advantage of a slow Hamilton and Grosjean’s timidity to execute a superb double pass.


Kamui Kobayashi – From Suzuka hero to Korea zero. Was unsure about exactly what went wrong at the start but accepted the blame: “I had Nico [Rosberg] to the right and Jenson [Button] and Sergio [Perez] on my left-hand side. Someone hit my rear tyre and then it was impossible to control the car, but I had to brake at some point. I didn’t manage to avoid the accident, and I feel very sorry for ruining someone else’s race, and certainly this was not my intention. It was just a very difficult moment and I had nowhere to go but I think it was my mistake.

Sergio Perez – Felt the yellow flags in Q2 cost him a chance to reach the final ten. Ran a long first stint but was delayed by a slow first pit stop. “This was when we lost the race because I dropped behind a group of cars,” he said. However the race chart indicates he came out behind Vergne who pulled away from him and went on to finish in the points.

Toro Rosso

Daniel Ricciardo – Finished behind his team mate but was clearly the quicker of the two Toro Rossos this weekend. Relegated to 21st on the grid due to a gearbox change penalty, he was running ahead of Vergne when his car developed a fault which sent him off the track: “At first I thought it must have been a suspension failure,” he said. “I realised I could keep going, even if every time I braked the car pulled to the left and I was locking the front a lot. Unfortunately, that cost me eighth place, but at least I was able to give it up to my team-mate.”

Jean-Eric Vergne – Made his way past the Williams drivers in the opening laps despite pressure from his team mate. Ricciardo jumped him by staying out a lap longer at the end of their first stint, but the positions were reversed when Ricciardo hit trouble later on.


Pastor Maldonado – The yellow flag wasn’t a concern for Maldonado in Q2 – he simply didn’t feel the car was capable of reaching Q3. Unusually he ran a one-stop strategy in the race, but lacked the pace to make progress and couldn’t get ahead of any of the cars he started behind.

Bruno Senna – Was knocked out in Q1 for the third time this year. In the race he got stuck behind his one-stopping team mate and lost a lot of time.


Heikki Kovalainen – “We were simply too slow,” he admitted after struggling to find a set-up he was happy with. Swapped places with his team mate in the final stint but ended up over ten seconds behind due to the blue flags.

Vitaly Petrov – Out-qualified and out-raced his team mate, the pair finishing in front of the Marussias.


Pedro de la Rosa – Not for the first time this year HRT pulled one of their cars out due to a safety concern: “Unfortunately, we had a problem with the throttle pedal since the fifth lap,” de la Rosa explained. “At the start it would get slightly jammed but as the laps went by it got worse so the team decided to pull me out. I think they made the right decision because, not only was the car very difficult to handle and we were going slower and slower, but it was also dangerous.”

Narain Karthikeyan – Pitted just once and finished well over a minute behind the next car. Had a scare during qualifying when a brake disc shattered as he approached turn three, sending him spinning off at speed.


Timo Glock – Pushed the Caterhams during the race but fell back in the final stint when his front-right tyre started to go off.

Charles Pic – Had a very lonely race from last on the grid following an engine change penalty. He lost time picking his way past the HRTs at the start and was too far back to get on terms with his team mate and the Caterhams.

Qualifying and race results summary

Started Gap to team mate Laps leading team mate Pitted Finished Gap to team mate
Sebastian Vettel 2nd +0.074s 55/55 2 1st -8.231s
Mark Webber 1st -0.074s 0/55 2 2nd +8.231s
Jenson Button 11th +0.441s 0/0 0
Lewis Hamilton 3rd -0.441s 0/0 3 10th
Fernando Alonso 4th -0.35s 53/55 2 3rd -6.224s
Felipe Massa 6th +0.35s 2/55 2 4th +6.224s
Michael Schumacher 10th +0.152s 1/1 2 13th
Nico Rosberg 9th -0.152s 0/1 0
Kimi Raikkonen 5th -0.309s 55/55 2 5th -18.073s
Romain Grosjean 7th +0.309s 0/55 2 7th +18.073s
Paul di Resta 14th +0.215s 2/55 2 12th +39.147s
Nico Hulkenberg 8th -0.215s 53/55 2 6th -39.147s
Kamui Kobayashi 13th +0.134s 0/16 1
Sergio Perez 12th -0.134s 16/16 2 11th
Daniel Ricciardo 21st -0.256s 34/55 2 9th +2.198s
Jean-Eric Vergne 16th +0.256s 21/55 2 8th -2.198s
Pastor Maldonado 15th -0.419s 31/55 1 14th -1.978s
Bruno Senna 17th +0.419s 24/55 2 15th +1.978s
Heikki Kovalainen 19th +0.126s 39/54 2 17th +10.72s
Vitaly Petrov 18th -0.126s 15/54 2 16th -10.72s
Pedro de la Rosa 22nd 14/16 0
Narain Karthikeyan 23rd 2/16 1 20th
Timo Glock 20th +0.054s 50/53 2 18th Not on same lap
Charles Pic 24th -0.054s 3/53 2 19th Not on same lap

Review the race data

Vote for your driver of the weekend

Which driver do you think did the best job this weekend?

Cast your vote below and explain your choice in the comments.

Who was the best driver of the Korean Grand Prix weekend?

  • Charles Pic (0%)
  • Timo Glock (0%)
  • Pedro de la Rosa (0%)
  • Narain Karthikeyan (0%)
  • Vitaly Petrov (0%)
  • Heikki Kovalainen (0%)
  • Bruno Senna (0%)
  • Pastor Maldonado (0%)
  • Jean-Eric Vergne (3%)
  • Daniel Ricciardo (6%)
  • Sergio Perez (0%)
  • Kamui Kobayashi (1%)
  • Nico Hulkenberg (17%)
  • Paul di Resta (0%)
  • Romain Grosjean (1%)
  • Kimi Raikkonen (2%)
  • Nico Rosberg (0%)
  • Michael Schumacher (0%)
  • Felipe Massa (20%)
  • Fernando Alonso (3%)
  • Jenson Button (0%)
  • Lewis Hamilton (10%)
  • Mark Webber (3%)
  • Sebastian Vettel (34%)

Total Voters: 522

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2012 Korean Grand Prix

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    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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    113 comments on “Vote for your 2012 Korean GP driver of the weekend”

    1. “but he isn’t the rooster in this team.”

      Big lol on that one…just for that I’m voting for FM…it understandably took him a while to get where he has in FA’s Ferrari but considering how many had written him off earlier in the year, I think this was like a win for FM.

      1. And not being on the podium while he was worth second (3rd in worst case) is quite something as you said after his year, this is quite a new Felipe …
        My vote still going to Vettel, have to reckon he hasn’t made many mistakes on the WE. 2nd driver is definitly Massa

      2. “but he isn’t the rooster in this team.”

        Does this mean Massa is a hen… lol Voted Vettel…

    2. It cannot be anyone else than Vettel imo. Again a perfect demonstration of how to command a race when you are leading by the end of the first lap.

      Special mention to both Hülkenberg and Hamilton. Hülkenberg might not have had the pace to challenge the Lotuses, but with that great pass at turn 4 he did secure 6th place.

      Hamilton’s race reminded me of Gilles Villeneuve: even though everything is not going the way you want it to go – rear-suspension failure, heavy tyre wear and Kermit the frog stuck to your car – and still not giving up. I don’t know by hard what year, but it was a bit similar to Villeneuve driving his 312 Ferrari at Zandvoort with just 3 tyres for an entire lap with incredible pace. In the end, Hamilton was lucky Perez got held up by Di Resta at the end, else the final point would have gone to the young Mexican.

      1. “Kermit the frog stuck to your car”…funny one. I actually thought perhaps they had put LH on early garden leave.

      2. How about driving with a broken front wing that also happens to block your view… in the rain?

        Would’ve given it to Vettel if he had had pole, now I gave it to Hulk because he was really solid.

      3. I voted for Hamilton because despite everything he kept flogging his dead horse when he could have just retired and blamed the team he is leaving. Plaudits to Ricciardo for same reason. I considered Webber for a perfect execution of the plan, he has well and truly earned his contract extension.

        1. Definitely showed fighting spirit this race! Ricciardo too, as you say.
          And I think both Vergne and Hulkenberg showed us some really nice racing this weekend.

          I am afraid I agree with you on Webber as well, surely he was careful not to get too close too early, so as not to hear the same message that poor Felipe was getting, now that he finally found some speed!

      4. I can’t give it to Vettel as his quali was pretty poor. Also, I don’t see how this one cant go Hamilton. What he did out there was truly astonishing!

    3. A real tough one. Wanted to give it to Vettel and probably should have as well. Still went for Hulkenburg. Somehow it felt that Vettel’s win was made all the more easier by Webber. The impact of the win was lacking for me, quite in contrast to Suzuka. It is true though that no team had the pace of the RBR’s and I wonder if say Alonso was second, would the fight have been stronger for first place.

      Hulkenburg kept his head and even though lost out to Grosjean mid race, kept up behind him and executed the double pass beautifully. Not an easy thing to do when both the cars ahead of you have better pace even if they were handicapped in some way. I really hope FI dont let him go to Sauber. They could do with a stable line up for next year.

      1. Totally agree!

      2. “Somehow it felt that Vettel’s win was made all the more easier by Webber.”
        I totally agree. Webber clearly drove with the purpose of maximising the WDC result for his teammate, and the WCC result for his team. This race was a masterclass by RBR. Just as you could call the way the Dutch played football in the 70’s “total football”, you could call what Red Bull did in Korea “total racing”. Despite being 20kph off the pace in straight-line speed, nobody else laid a glove on them for the 1-2 finish – and in the right order, too.

    4. He may be a chicken most of the times. But his crowing in Korea was definitely that of a rooster and the best rooster in Formula 1 was reduced to being the chicken that day.

      Cock-a-doodle-doo, to you Felipe! Cock. A. Doodle. Doo.

    5. I feel ashamed but I’ll vote for Felipe Massa. Such a convincing performance, could’ve snatched 3rd place off Alonso, and maybe fight Webber – if he had a chance in the team, that is.

      Maybe he’s getting back to where he used to be, and that Suzuka podium really got his confidence back up.

      Other than that, I’d vote for Hulkenberg, or Vettel. But I feel like Massa deserves my vote this time. Specially after all the bashing.

      (and yes, Felipe, I said back in the day that Ferrari would renew your contract ! How mad it’s actually going to happen…)

      1. @fer-no65 Early on in the year i was one of the 4% (Last I checked) that Massa would beat Alonso in the team-mate battle. That Massa could potentially beat Alonso if the team had permitted him atleast helped me partly vindicate my stand :D

      2. I don’t know how much was luck and how much skill but with Massa’s tires in such good shape he definitely could have contended for 2nd. And who knows.

        He doesn’t deserve driver of the weekend though. Qualifying wasn’t good and ultimately it’s on him that he agrees to sit behind a teammate. “Could have” is not proven and in the end he merely “was not bad” in a car which is evidently second only to the Red Bull.

        Hulk had a near perfect weekend. But then so did Vettel when it really counted, and battled strongly on the first lap. I voted for Vettel.

        1. @tigen Massa had to stay behind Alonso, at Ferrai it’s well worth a no-seat for next season while you can be just okay at RedBull or McLaren … But totally agree, difficult to say what he could have done as it didn’t happened as for Jenson who seemed well above Hamilton and having great race pace during practice … we’ll never know

    6. As in Japan, Vettel was the best driver. His only faults were his second lap in Q3 and the lock-up on his in-lap during the second stint.

      1. Special mention to Hulkenberg also, he drove a fantastic race and the pass he pulled on Grosjean and Hamitlon was brilliant! Well and truly beat his teammate once again.

      2. Ably assisted by his team mate.

        1. Vettel, that is.

        2. @hohum – No, Vettel well and truly outclassed Webber. He bet him into turn one and from there Vettel built a gap.

          1. @vettel1, C’mon Max, get real, you can’t really be that naive, Webber set fastest lap in qualifying and in the race, he had the speed to fight all the way to the finish but that was not in the script.

            1. Vettel outclassed him in the race, Webber posted a fantastic lap in qualifying to pip Vettel for pole.
              Realistically though, Webber probably only set the fastest lap to annoy Vettel!

            2. @vettel1 – As surprising as it is, I’m happy Vettel didn’t get fastest lap. At least I won’t be thinking “not getting pole is the only thing that cost Vettel a grand chelem”.

      3. can’t argue with any of that, which was why i also voted for finger boy for the 2nd week in succession.

    7. he isn’t the rooster in this team

      As much as I hated to watch ‘Alonso is faster(?) than you 3’, I think that every other team would have done the same if they were in Ferrari’s situation now and that Ferrari wouldn’t have issued team orders if this was only the third race of the season or so.

      1. In fairness, I agree with you. At this stage in the season, it was necessary that FM not rob FA of points as he is the team’s only WDC hope. And I think it would have been too much of a long shot to try to have FM go by FA, then get ahead of MW and hold him up so FA could get by both of them for a second place. And I would like to think FA himself would not like to have that much help. He probably would have been embarassed if he had that kind of help, or at least I’d like to think so. MS in the same situation would have felt it was his god-given right and well earned by him and would have pumped his fists and basked in the glory of his achievement of a second on the podium…and then would have thanked everyone including the janitor back at the factory.

        I’m just not exactly feeling all warm and fuzzy about Ferrari today, obviously after reading LdM’s quotes, but yes for sure any team, especially ones that have given both their drivers a fair shot and for whom it just didn’t work out for one driver, while the other has a legitimate WDC shot, would be giving it up for the one with the shot right now. That’s how F1 is supposed to work, imho. Would they have issued the same team order to FM if this was the 3rd race? Today I am feeling like perhaps they would, although in my heart I actually do believe that they are not doing it quite to the extent of the MS/Ferrari way and in fact yes I think FM would have been allowed by if it was the 3rd race of the season. At least I keep trying to look at the glass half full.

      2. Totally agree @girts.

        Any team with one driver on 194 points and the other on 69 points would, as you say, do the same.

        Moreover, Massa is (despite his recent form) lucky that he wasn’t given the bullet mid-season, if not at the end of 2011. He owes the team big time.

        Finally, it’s not as if Ferrari makes any secret of the fact that Alonso is number one. Felipe has obviously decided that no. 2 at Ferrari is better than trying his luck with another team. You have to accept the consequences of the choices you make.

    8. Looking at the current standings, im amazed to see Webber 0%, Alonso 1% … while Kobayashi gets 4% !? I mean, whaat? :(

      1. @me4me – he provided just about the only excitement in the entire race!

        1. In this case the 4% refers to the amount of Kob’s car that remained untouched by another car at the start. And it also apparently represents his chances of being re-signed by Sauber.

    9. Massa deserved it last week in Suzuka, in my opinion. I choose HulkenBerger.

      1. I was trying to decide between Hulkenberg, Massa and Vettel. I chose Massa in the end – I think he had the potential to finish 2nd.

    10. Will Vettel ever get close to 40% on this blog?

    11. The drive that impressed me the most was the one of the Hulk, he got everything from that car, in qualiying and on the race and that move on Grosjean and Hamilton was the highlight of the race.
      Next up both Toros, in my opinion their drive of the year. It´s fair to mention Massa, he seemed really fast on race trim.

      If there was a vote for the worst driver of the week, which I think it would be very interesting, the prize would go undisputably to Kobayashi – in that accident was it pressure for feeling that is place was in danger and he had to show strong results to remain at Sauber?

    12. Not a Hamilton fan by any means but he really drove his ass off considering the mechanical problems he had. Runner up imo would be Raikkonen, decent qualifying and finished where he started. Quite good for someone who has never raced at Korea before.

    13. Gagnon (@johnniewalker)
      15th October 2012, 18:07

      My vote goes to JEV, Great race for the torro rosso driver.

      1. Ricciardo was better than Vergne.

        1. They both had great races but for me Vergne just ahead. He was ahead of his team mate after the first stops, came out after the 2nd stops 3 places behind but still finished ahead, overtaking Di Resta, Perez (I think) and Schumacher on the way.

          1. I’m fairly sure Ricciardo had a suspension problem or something. As Keith has said, he was clealy quicker; he qualified ahead of Vergne (but dropped behind him on the grid due to a gearbox change) and managed to get back ahead, before the problem occured.

            1. Yes Dan was unlucky and drove a great race but he only passed his team mate in the 2nd pit stop. My reason for saying Jev was his race craft; he passed good drivers on track.

          2. Actually, despite Ricciardo starting five places behind Vegne, he got ahead him on lap 16 and continued to pull away from him for the remainder of the race, passing everyone that Vergne did. He had a brake problem develop on lap 44 which slowed him down and allowed Vergne to catch and pass him, otherwise Ricciardo would have been convincingly 8th.

        2. I agree Daniel Ricciardo could have finished 7th if he did not have the brake problem starting from 21st great drive.

        3. Yeah not going to lie, I gave my vote to Ricciardo. From 21st position on the grid he would have beaten his team mate by atleast 10 seconds if it wasn’t for that damned brake problem.
          Same as in Monza, his car died on the last corner. He’s outclassed Vergne this year.

    14. Hamilton, no contest. A completely broken car, and he STILL managed to make Raikkonen have to fight for it, and even retook his position for a while, despite Raikkonen being much, much faster.

    15. Hamilton. With a broken car he demonstrated why he is one of the better drivers of Formula 1 today. His spirit is amazing.

      1. “guys I think we should retire the car”
        Lewis Hamilton, German GP 2011 Lap 2.
        He drove very well in almost impossible circumstances yesterday but don’t forget his amazing spirit in Hockenheim

        1. 2012 German/ GP sorry

          1. So were you in the car experienceing the difficulty and damage he had to try to manage?

        2. @91jb12 How does a Grand Prix that happened three months ago relate to this race?

      2. He isn’t the most positive driver on the grid, he sounded rather disheartened and negative on the radio. Still, he did do well to score a point (if we exclude his off).

        1. Yeah because he should sound more like this:
          “Hey guys I am having a wonderful day, this is soo much fun. Just before i finish the car is totally unstable, the tyres are wearing out very quickly and everyone behind me is catching me. Dont worry i dont mind having a third car failure in three races and now my championship hopes are in tatters. I mean its not like you guys have cost me over 50 points this season. This is soo much fun. I love this car, I love this team”

          1. Exactly why he got my vote.

          2. LOL Well said.

    16. Sorry Seb, but this has to go to Ricciardo.
      Amazing performance especially in the first laps.

    17. I’ll give this one to Massa as I believe this was the performance that finally consolidated his return to top form. Decent quali, there or thereabouts all weekend and superb pace on Sunday. It’s the second GP in a row where Massa is the one who gets the most out of his Ferrari, not Alonso.

      Notable mentions, in order: Vettel, Webber, Ricciardo and Hulkenberg.

    18. I know Vettel dominated once again, but it just felt so lacklustre with Webber in second place. The Red Bull car was clearly streets ahead of the rest. I voted for him after Japan, so I’ll go for someone else this time, and it’s a toss-up between Massa and Ricciardo for me. I think I’ll give it to the Australian.

      1. “clearly” being 2 tenths clear in qualy and 10 secs over a 55 lap race.

        1. “Clearly” being first and second in qualifying and first and second at the chequered flag, with no other cars ever having been in front of them (except maybe at pit stops – I know Vettel led every lap, but I’m not going to check the lap chart to see if Webber was ever lower than second). It doesn’t really matter what the time gap was, particularly at a track like Korea: if any other car had got close, they could have used huge DRS zone (as well as Red Bull’s relatively poor straight line speed) to get past without too much difficulty. That they did not even have the opportunity is enough for me to think that the Red Bull had a distinct advantage.

    19. I actually thought Hulk did the best job over the eekend, so I’m very pleasantly surprised Vettel leads this poll. What has come over everyone this week???

      1. Everybody loves a winner baby…….
        That’s no lie

        1. they love a winner, when it isn’t Vettel! This may be his first DoTW this year!

          1. Not always other winners get it either; for example, Perez(Malaysia/Italy)Vettel was not the winner but Alonso/Hamilton.

    20. 1/ vettel

    21. Sebastian Vettel; he dominated all weekend, apart from the 10 minute Q3 session.
      can’t get much better than that.

    22. Vettel wasn’t perfect, but he has to be a contender by making the race winner never in doubt after the first few corners. Massa did very very well all weekend, as did Hulkenberg. The two Torro Rosso guys, while their car seems to lack some pace on Saturday, used all the pace they had where it mattered, and battled on track some too.

      Alonso probably did the best he could too, having a good start to get ahead of HAM (that would have costed him!), and hanging on. Can’t really take the effort to attack WEB very serious though, and I do think MAS was faster this weekend.

      I’ll give it to Hulkenberg because he took his car so much further than his team mate managed, both on Saturday and on Sunday, well done.

      1. Oh, an honourable mention for HAM too, things clearly didn’t go his way (or that of his team) this weekend, but apart from a bit of moodiness when the car started crabbing about, he then got his act together and fought for what he+car was worth, even until the final corner. And on Saturday he got the car where it belonged too, I think he actually showed a lot of skill and determination in Korea.

        1. Can someone explain to me why Hamilton had no right to be just a bit angry and disappointed. Three races three mechanical failures, Second position in the championship to 4th equal in three races and effectively out of the championship. Does that sound like something worth cheering about?

          1. He had the right but didn’t and that was worth cheering.

    23. Boring race, boring pick for driver of the weekend, Vettel, no one else even comes close in my oppinion. Though hat fact makes me sad :(

    24. Massa could have finished 2nd maybe. Maybe not. No one knows. What if his tires died 5 laps too early?
      Hulkenberg had a nice drive but having seen penalties for offtrack overtaking this season, shouldn’t the stewards had a look? It’s not taking anything from the ability he showed but it does leave bad aftertaste, right? (having in mind Webber’s penalty at Singapore)
      Voted Vettel.

    25. How can anyone vote for Alonso when Massa showed the Ferrari had more in it today?

    26. Really hated to see Senna’s race pretty much ruined by the debris caught up in his wing at the beginning, and then just the overall lack of pace in the FW34 this weekend. He had another spectacular start (one of several this season), jumping almost immediately from P17 to P12, but those problems cost him too much of that gain to ever make it back up again. Pastor was quoted the other day as suspecting Williams have been left behind in the development race, and it certainly looks that way right now. Doesn’t help much that the team have been awfully slow with their pit stops in the last several races either.

    27. Hulk was very good, but I am giving it to Felipe, as he was the only person able to consistently match Vettel’s lap times which was very impressive considering the Ferrari wasn’t the best car at this track. Nice that he’s gaining some momentum heading into 2013!

      Also he made it to Q3 which is no mean feat for him in 2012! :P

    28. Hulkenberg for me, very solid weekend, made himself stand out yet again & massively outperformed his teammate. Extra points for the beaming grin and excitement shown in post race interviews.

      Also worthy – Vettel for another dominating weekend, Massa & the Toro Rosso boys, that car looked good out there

    29. “Felipe, Alonso is slower than you… confirm you understand the message.” is how Smedley should have told him to back off. Of course, we’d have been talking Rob Smedley having gone missing under mysterious circumstances the followng day if he had, but you could tell that back in 2010 he was gutted to have to relay the team orders. That just would have been perfect payback… :D

    30. I’m a little confused why Vettel has so many votes. He mucked up Q3, he made a couple of mistakes in the race, and had an easy job of taking the fastest car on the grid round at the front, a position inherited by a classic Webber start.

      For me it was the easiest vote of the year, and it goes to Hamilton. He recovered from a difficult Friday to qualify a very impressive 3rd, considering his team-mate was knocked out in Q2 (the yellow flags might have been a factor, but Hamilton being 7 tents quicker through the middle sector was also pretty important).

      Into the race, the wasn’t much he could do at the start, being boxed out. Then on lap 18 his anti-roll bar broke, a problem that cost Alonso 1.6-2 seconds a lap on the much shorter, simpler circuit that is Monza. Hamilton however managed to only lose 2 seconds a lap, for over 30 laps on a longer, more challenging circuit. He also managed some remarkable displays of defensive driving against the Lotus drivers, and attacked the Torro Rosso’s at the end, probably with the ability to take 8th before being attacked by some rogue AstroTurf!

      I agree with Martin Whitmarsh that Hamilton’s performance was truly heroic. I suspect it was a performance that will be appreciated more as time passes by and more realise how incredible it was.

      1. I don’t even think this was one of Vettel’s best weekends of the year (but it wasn’t any easier a job than Button at Australia, for instance), but he’s been screwed out of the vote many, many times.

        1. I agree, I’ve voted for Vettel on a number of occasions when he dominated the weekend etc, but this time he didn’t, he made mistakes, and I can think of at least 3 drivers who, for me, did a better job.

      2. If Hamilton can somehow produce a miraculous comeback and win the WDC by a single point, we will be able to attribute it to his “heroics” in Korea. If he finishes 4th overall, though, it’s not going to make any material difference and will probably be forgotten in time.

      3. Hmmm … “it was a performance that will be appreciated more as time passes by and more realise how incredible it was.” I take your point, but I felt similarly back in 1986 (!) when my then-hero, Alain Prost, made a stirring recovery during the last half of the Belgian GP, claiming fastest lap on the way to sixth (which was also a solitary point back then). I thought this drive completely outshone the winner’s that weekend (Nigel Mansell). Also, Prost was similarly heroic on his way to an eventual 7th at Hockenheim, when he ran out of fuel on the finishing straight, but then earned the undying admiration of the crowd by getting out of his car and endeavouring to push it across the line. (No points for 7th back then). He totally stole the show from Nelson Piquet, who won that race. But most people remember 1986 as the year Prost inherited the title after Mansell’s tyre blew in the last race at Adelaide. Still, we can dream that our heroes will be recognised for their heroics in times to come.

      4. Well, to be honest, I didn’t know why Vettel had so few at Singapore; he did all that was needed of him, and benefited froma retirement a la Alonso at valencia, and he won that poll by miles.

    31. Every time Vettel absolutely owns a race weekend, I can not wait to get here to see what excuses people come up with to not vote for him.

      Never getting disappointed.

      1. @dennis Well, in fairness he’s getting the votes for once this time.

      2. @dennis, I will do my best in my upcoming comment.

      3. hahaha, me too Dennis.. absolutely spot on.. have stopped taking these votes seriously a LONG time ago.. :)

      4. To be honest, he didn’t dominate in the same manner that he did last weekend. Webber took the pole position and Vettel was struggling to make his tyres last on the final stint – it seems he was close to having a puncture (and if he did, no one would say he deserves to be DotW). Yet he didn’t win Japan DotW vote, but he seems to win this one. Weird.

        I think there were many drivers who performed well in Korea – Vettel, Massa, Hülkenberg, Räikkönen, Ricciardo, Vergne and Hamilton at least, and I think this is the toughest DotW vote we’ve had this season. It’s true that Vettel often receives a lot less votes than he should (Japan is a perfect example), but I don’t think he’s been underestimated this weekend.

    32. Uh-oh. I think a lot of people tried to vote for Webber and accidentally clicked on Vettel instead.

    33. Michael Brown (@)
      16th October 2012, 0:44

      Easy. Vettel

    34. Vettel lead the whole way but didn’t have a convincing dominance over Webber this weekend, who asserted himself against Vettel by taking ‘his’ pole and fastest lap. Hamilton drove with tenacity and resilience but he must surely be partly at fault for not reaching a setup he was happy with on Friday. Alonso got the most out of the car as usual but never had to fear Massa might put any pressure on him. I voted for Hulkenberg, who punched above his car’s weight on Saturday and Sunday and pulled that great double pass on Grosjean and Hamilton with finesse and skill.

      1. I should add that I considered voting for Kimi, but he made very heavy weather of passing Hamilton and lost the chance to pressurize Massa later in the race as a consequence. Both Toro Rosso drivers impressed me too, but not enough for DOTW ahead of the Hulk.

    35. Drop Valencia!
      16th October 2012, 1:18

      Karthikeyan is a joke, if HRT put a real driver in there he may not bring money but he would bring much needed positive glow to HRT.

    36. A difficult choice this weekend, as there were few standout drives. The obvious choice is Vettel, who led from start to finish yet again, but (here we go, @dennis ;-) for me the emphasis is on yet again. He’s now led every lap since Hamilton encountered the first in his latest batch of car problems. I’ve developed a low resistance to Vettel dominance over the course of 2011, and after such a promising start to 2012, I am very disappointed to see the season develop in this fashion. Back to my rationale for not voting for Vettel, Sebastian is now back in the routine of controlling every race from the start, and there is nothing standout about it anymore. Also, this was not Vettel’s best weekend; he didn’t deliver in the practice session when it counts most: the second run in Q3 (and it wasn’t just Felipe Massa that cost him pole, his S2 was poor, and S3 could have been stronger too).

      So in the end I voted for Ricciardo. He made his way up from 21st to 8th, and the fact that he had to relinquish that place due to mechanical problem does not diminish his achievements in my eyes. A pity for him, though, that this drops him back even further behind his team mate in the standings (and also annoying that on James Allen’s blog you can vote for JEV but not RIC as driver of the day).

      1. Yeah, here we go.
        Blah, blah, leading from start to finish, blah, blah… Not a Vettel fan, blah, blah, boring, blah, blah.

        “Nothing standout” really caught my attention, though. Yeah, it’s really a shame he only won with a 10 second gap, and not with a sommersault over the finish line chopping Psy’s hand off with a part of the front wing.

        1. ATTENTION! ATTENTION! Vettel Fan-Boy Alert! :)
          Blardy-Blardy Blah…

          I understand both views though… I got very bored of watching Vettel dominate last year so there is no novelty to it now BUT if you look at how much Red Bull were struggling earlier in the year compared to now then you can only really credit Newey for the turnaround.
          I think (given how close Webber and Vettel were this weekend) Newey probably driven himself and got the win

          1. *Newey probably could have driven himself…

            1. @mcgregski I think Mclaren’s engineers could have jumped into the Mclaren for most of this season and won more races than Button and Hamilton did :)

            2. @david-a haha yes you’re probably right… who knows, maybe Button and Hamilton would have done a better job with the pit stops
              Now we know where McLaren are going wrong!

        2. so you want us to believe that you vote completely untainted yourself, or is it just when Vettel is not voted for enough (in your opinion) that it bothers you?

          If this was about the result itself there wouldn’t be much reason to vote now, would there?

          To keep a Red Bull in front from start to finish impresses me just as little as it did keeping a Ferrari in front in the 200x’s.

    37. I went for Ricciardo. Despite starting five places behind his team mate, he was 10 seconds ahead of him on lap 44 when his car got a brake problem. Ricciardo has easily been the better driver of the two this year, it’s just a shame that the points tell a different story.

    38. You cannot go past the man who only missed out on pole because he got checked by Massa on his last lap in Q3, then jumped his teammate at the start despite being on the dirty side of the track, then led every moment of the race from then on without being threatened by anybody. Vettel had the race so completely under his control from turn 1 lap 1 that he made it boring after that first lap. If that is not true class I don’t know what is.
      I rate Webber next best. He did in fact win pole & fastest lap, he was never really in doubt for 2nd after his teammate, and there is a good case for saying he was driving to a team plan to ensure Vettel was not threatened for the win and that Alonso be restricted to a maximum 15 points from the weekend. Webber’s jousting in sector 1 lap 1 to let Vettel into the lead, while simultaneously keeping Alonso and Hamilton at bay, was masterful if it was indeed the execution of a team plan.
      Massa was third best for me. He would have beaten his teammate fair and square and finished on the podium if he had not been so bluntly told to back off by his team.

    39. I think Vettel did nothing special in the race apart from running well in degraded tyres.. Mark webber was too easy @ the start on vettel . didn’t even make a single move across to defend the position . Vettel had the best car on the Grid yet he was not on POLE. So there’s nothing special about it .
      Webber’s action @ the start can be justified. as Vettel needs every single point to win the WDC 2012.
      Massa was better than Alonso but he was not that gud in quali..
      So it went with HULK. mainly due to the race he had with an underperforming force india.

      just my idea… @ least …

    40. I try and look at driver’s who didn’t make a mistake all weekend. So despite Vettel’s dominance, his mistake in Q3 rules him out. He thoroughly deserved to win DotW in Japan but will win it here instead.

      Daniel Ricciardo again drove great all weekend, undone by mechanical problems. I don’t believe the Massa hype, he drove extremely well but I feel he was still outpaced by Alonso.

      It’s between Kimi and the Hulk for me. But I favoured Hulkenberg in the end because Kimi seemed a little timid in his one on one battles. Hulkenberg put the Force India higher than it’s pace with some excellent racing and a 55 lap battle with Grosjean. He was a joy to watch.

    41. Got to be Vettel’s this time. He blew everyone else into the weeds. Not getting yet another pole position was a minor blip in the context of the weekend and the championship.

    42. I’m sick of voting for Vettel, so I’ll go for Ricciardo. Started from a much lower position than his teammate, passed every driver Vergne did and would have finished in front of him had it not been for a few late-race problems. Did well in what is an improving car, and should finally finish higher than ninth in the last few races :)

    43. Felipe Massa gets my vote. His past 4 races have been stellar – beginning with Monza. But at both Monza and Korea, he had to cede to Fernando. At Suzuka, w/o Fernando’s ass poking in, he clearly showed he had the speed. Same with this weekend. I thought he’d have taken 2nd place only if the team gave him a chance. Oh well…

      And here’s one for the cynics: I think Massa will win in Budh International Circuit….and Alonso third! (Vettel in between of course!)

    44. It’s getting pretty easy to pick driver of the weekend with Vettel’s performances lately. I was shocked like many that he didn’t take pole position by 4 tenths or something silly like that. The race, unfortunately, was won in the 1st corner and he was just untouchable.

      When Vettel gets out front he is a very hard man to beat and this weekend showed this.

    45. My vote went to Grosjean. On the surface his seventh place finish doesn’t look like anything to write home about, but I think in the context of the enormous pressure being put upon him, his clean and solid drive to seventh place is almost as good as a win. He finished only a little way down the road from Raikkonen despite being told explicitly not to get involved in any tangles, and in spite of having a car which didn’t have the benefit of the coanda-effect exhaust. Under the circumstances, Grosjean could well have been expected to either buckle under the pressure and crash out, or to pootle around slowly before finishing outside of the points. He didn’t do either of those things; he drove a clean race to a good pace, got the most out of the tyres and finished well in the points. More than that, he proved to all his detractors that he is doing his best to address the problems he’s had in recent races, while still not sacrificing out and out pace in the process. A very mature and impressive drive, when all things are taken into consideration.

    46. Massa for me. He did a superb job and just looked to be on top of the race from the off. He obeyed his team, which many might not agree with, but he clearly respects his team which for me is a big, big thing.

    47. I vote for Hamilton because he managed ,for the first time, to bring a carpet to the points.

    48. OmarR-Pepper (@)
      18th October 2012, 17:01

      Lewis 10%? That’s a joke, or many people thinking DOTW is a joke

    49. Maybe it was because the race was dull, but no driver stood out for me so I gave it to Vettel, he led after the first lap and controlled the race to claim another victory, that could have been said about any number of victories from last year.

      Unless he has a couple of more DNFs he is surely going to claim his third title in a row.

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