Rate the race: 2012 United States Grand Prix

2012 United States Grand Prix

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What did you think of the United States Grand Prix? Share your verdict on today’s race.

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Rate the 2012 United States Grand Prix out of ten

  • 10 (30%)
  • 9 (35%)
  • 8 (24%)
  • 7 (8%)
  • 6 (2%)
  • 5 (0%)
  • 4 (0%)
  • 3 (0%)
  • 2 (0%)
  • 1 (0%)

Total Voters: 701

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2012 United States Grand Prix

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    Image © Red Bull/Getty images

    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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    213 comments on “Rate the race: 2012 United States Grand Prix”

    1. Right from the start, we had an abundance of clean, firm but fair racing up and down the field. The midfield pack was tightly bunched throughout the race, Hamilton and Vettel’s race-long duel was tension-filled, unpredictable and ultimately brilliant to watch, while Button and Massa were absolutely flying throughout. Commendable drives as well from Grosjean, Hulkenberg, Raikkonen and Alonso. There was no shortage of tangles through the midfield. Every lap had something entertaining to see.

      On another note, COTA is quickly becoming my favorite track, especially those flowing esses of Sector One.

      While Abu Dhabi and Valencia produced exciting races as the product of safety cars and mechanical misfortune, this USGP was probably the closest thing to outright pure F1 racing I have ever seen, and I thoroughly enjoyed it, in spite of losing an entire night’s sleep. I am further glad that F1 has been able to make a good first impression on the US audience. Ultimately, this brings the championship down to the wire, and I can’t wait for Brazil.

      A perfect 10.

      1. Very well said sir!

        1. Yeehaw :)))))

        2. Thanks!

          1. Nicely put!! This is the first ‘new’ track that i actually think has character and my word did it (and the dirt) create a fantastic race! Turn 1 and sector one is an instant classic.

        3. Hard tyres may have been an accidental choice but it absolutely added to the spectacle with drivers exceeding the limit, smoking up the tyres, and still able to continue without having to return to the pits for a fresh set. There were also options off the racing line as it wasn’t littered with ridiculous amounts of marbles! Get rid of the rest of the tyre choices and only use these or harder is what I say. What an enjoyable race!

      2. I agree entirely, but couldn’t let myself score it higher than a 9 due to the DRS being a bit much at times. There really were moments when I felt as though it detracted from the race. Also, I’m a bit biased as my stream kept messing up, so it made it a bit harder for me to enjoy it properly.

      3. It was an excellent race, a shame perhaps that a part of that was the ‘out of the wrapper’ condition but its a small niggle.
        It was probably the least artificial (for lack of better word) race for excitment that didnt require safety cars or massive shunts. Wonderful racing and excellent/clean overtakes.

      4. All I wanted to say you have said it better.

      5. I agree 100%
        …and Pirelli cowboy hats for the podium have been the icying on the cake ;)

      6. Austin put so much personality into their race.Great trophies and the cowboy hats were brilliant. It’s such a shame now that even tracks like Monza have Santander steaming poo trophies.

        1. Yeah, it’s so lame the trophy has to be the sponsor’s logo (santander in spain, monza, silverstone; eni in hungary).

        2. Those really were the icing on the cake! Good to see some effort put in to show its a race in its own, not just another corporate copy. Well said @Tommyb89

      7. Yep… Best race in a while.

      8. completely agree!
        I was on the edge of my seat for most of the race

      9. +1
        Brilliant summary, well said sir.

      10. Agung Inventor
        19th November 2012, 1:47

        9.5, because of webber DNF and alonso race pace :)

      11. +1. that sums it up perfectly.

        despite not being a fan of in-your-face stereotypes, i loved the cowboy hats for the podium, and i’m sure that ham, alo & vet will treasure those in due course!
        Austin TX, you did yourselves & F1 proud. other than the track not being rubbered in, you’d never believe it didn’t exist 12 months ago. amazing job!!!

      12. I think this has to be the first race in a long time that no one has lost a front wing at all!

      13. Absolutely best race of the year giddyup!

      14. Brilliant race, Drs zone seemed ok eg. Hamilton struggled to get past Vettel until Karthikeyan got in the way. Also, quick mention for Schumacher whose qualifying performance yesterday for me was one of the best ive seen this season, that Mercedes is horrendously slow and he somehow got it up to 5th over a second quicker than Rosberg. Wish he had a drive for next season

      15. I think it was a great race race especially for the importance of f1 in the us. I rated it an 8 becuase although very thrilling and many overtakes i believe hamilton passed vettel too easy through use of drs, it was a similar situation as in canada, the drs was too much of an advantage. Maybe this is becuase it was the first race here judging the length of the drs zone is tough, so hopefully next year the us grand prix can be if possible even better than the grand prix just gone! P.s go on kimi!

        1. @jacka306, I would beg to differ on that account. DRS naturally made it easier, but I had seats at the track just after turn 11 and you could see Hamilton pretty easily closing on Seb coming out of the turn and before he even entered the DRS zone. Likely would have required more balls without DRS, but clearly wasn’t dependent on it.

          1. @jmwalley the fact you had seats for the race is irrelevant, on tv there were time gaps so it was easier to tell how close hamilton was to vettel for me watching the race. Im not saying that drs is bad, just that maybe next year it could be shortened. For example when kimi passed schumacher just before the drs zone he then got retaken over not just by schumacher but grosjean aswell. It makes turn 11 not an overtaking spot and since you were sitting there im sure you would have preferred to see some overtaking at that turn.

      1. :Thumbs up:

        Just awesome. One of the greatest duels in F1 history. :)

        1. ??????? You could have played that on fast forward and missed nothing.

      2. exactly! wicked race

      3. Agreed. It was like 56 qualifying laps from Hamilton. Awesome, awesome race. Kudos to Vettel for pushing hard the whole race, & to Ferrari & Alonso for making us wait one more race to see who’s champion. Not to mention that COTA turned out to be one helluva great track for racing. Definitely one of my favorites. Perfect 10 for the race!

      4. historic race – there is no way anyone including Vettel could claim that he was better than Hamilton at the stage in their careers – it’ll be interesting to see how Vettel receives this lesson – now that he obviously knows there’s quite a bit of room for improvement, will he get better or remain at the same level?

        1. He was on fire, along with Massa (?!) who really seems to have his speed back.

          Can’t wait until Brazil, real shame Lewis had those failures, now I’m rooting for Fernando over Seb.

        2. historic race – there is no way anyone including Vettel could claim that he was better than Hamilton at the stage in their careers

          Hamilton was better today, but don’t get ahead of yourself, Vettel is still on the verge of becoming a triple champion.

          1. Over the entire year, I’d really struggle to rank Hamilton, Vettel and Alonso. All have been fantastic. I’m keen to see how Keith manages to order them,

          2. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
            19th November 2012, 0:29

            @David-A yes but you’re suggesting that because he wins the WDC that he’s the de facto best driver – the champion is not always the best driver on the grid… There’s a reason why Hamilton and Alonso and Stewart and the rest of the world do NOT consider Vettel one of the best drivers – sure as a team and driver they may win the championship but that does not mean the driver is the best driver and deserves it. Given the talent on the grid, Vettel could easily be 4th or 5th best driver, yet he may get another WDC…

            1. I agree with Michael. Vettel’s a good driver, but it was no contest last year due to the huge superiority of his car. Not in any way trying to put him down him for it, but I’ve always said that there are three drivers I rate higher than him… and I always have to stress that it’s just my opinion. Even so, this kind of talk usually results in a flurry of angrily waved blue & yellow pom poms around here… look out, Michael :)

            2. @freelittlebirds – Stewart didn’t say he wasn’t a great driver, or one of the best drivers on today’s grid. He suggested that he wasn’t yet an all time great, since he is still young.

              It isn’t “the rest of the world” that agrees with you. Moss for instance, said that SV was the best driver of the grid, and a “modern day Fangio”. It’s a mere matter of opinion which doesn’t actually affect what happens on track. I agree with @matt90 , that the three have been difficult to separate this season.

              At the end of the day, yours is a self defeating argument. If Vettel was so far off his rivals that he was the 5th best driver on the grid, yet so happened to win 3 championships on the bounce (something that only 2 drivers in F1 history have ever done), then the car makes an insurmountably huge difference. So much so, that we might as well argue that someone like Vergne is better than Hamilton or Alonso. Because clearly, the team and car affects the end results that much. It just doesn’t work out that way.

            3. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
              19th November 2012, 1:30

              @Aldoid I hear you – I’m seriously outgunned here – let me get my pom poms:-)

            4. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
              19th November 2012, 1:39

              @David-A “Then the car makes an insurmountably huge difference” With a car 10 seconds off the pace, anyone could probably win the WDC. So yes, the car makes a difference but drivers are important because the top cars are usually within a half-second and some drivers can buy 0.3-0.4 seconds. No one argues that FA or LH do that. No one has suggested that SV does that.

              And no one argues that the Red Bulls are the better cars – they have dominated F1 like no other car has. Just look at the qualifying 1-2 and race 1-2 to see that in the last 3 years. 3 WCCs in a row…In fact, if it weren’t for Hamilton being so fast, the Red Bulls would have swept the front row even more often.

            5. @freelittlebirds

              Ascanelli, who has worked in F1 for over 25 years believes Vettel is that sort of driver, even comparing him to Senna). We simply can’t make such concrete judgements that Vettel isn’t capabnle of doing what Alonso and Hamilton can do.

              Red Bull have dominated F1 like no car ever has? Are you aware of the early 2000s? The Chapman era? The Mclarens of the 80s? If you looked back at the records of a lot of other teams that won the championship, you’d find similar records of winning and taking pole positions. In fact, this year, Red Bull have swept the front row 3 times. Mclaren twice. Not such a great difference there, and only goes to show how people want to overrate Red Bull in order to justify their claims that other drivers are better.

            6. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
              19th November 2012, 3:35

              @ David-A Yes, there’s been domination. Here’s the link of all the WCC champions – note how many times they also won the WDC – the driver has an asterisk. The team that has the fastest car usually wins both the WDC and WCC – it does not mean they have the fastest driver. Most times they do and if they don’t, the driver is fast enough to get the job done. It’s difficult to quantify Vettel’s performance because his results are not in line with his previous results.

              Hamilton’s performance we can quantify – he dominated Formula 3, GP2, beat Alonso, a driver that most consider a legend already and beat Button handily. On track, he has beaten Raikonnen in epic face-offs as well as Vettel today in a true grit performance. Today, even Vettel clapped as he passed him.

              People will point to this race when they compare Vettel and Hamilton for many, many years to come.

            7. @freelittlebirds – if this race is that significant, then how about that race where Hamilton won the title at the end of 08? Who beat him to 4th place there?

              Vettel’s record in other series was very good- and even so, entering F1 and becoming the youngest ever pointscorer and racewinner suggests a talent that would indeed go on to have the level of success he has had. And before you try to point out any imperfections in his pre-F1 record, I’ll remind you that they are not the be all and end all- Mark Webber beat Fernando Alonso in F3000, the precursor to GP2, after all.

          3. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
            19th November 2012, 4:39

            @David-A Yes but has anyone enjoyed the consistent results that Hamilton has through all his competitions?

            So far what we know about Vettel is the following:

            – He is possibly better than Liuzzi – when Vettel scored his first points Liuzzi came in P6 while Vettel is in P4 but Liuzzi beat him in the other 2 races he finished
            – He is definitely better than Bourdain
            – He is better than Webber
            – He might be as fast as DiResta

            It all boils down to how fast Webber is – too bad he didn’t go to Ferrari so we can extrapolate Vettel’s speed. Do you not agree with this assessment?

            1. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
              19th November 2012, 4:54


              I just looked up the 2007 results – Liuzzi outqualified Vettel 4-3 and won 2-1 in races. I know results are not always indicative of performance but Vettel’s record is extremely spotty.

            2. @freelittlebirds – I would not agree that Vettel’s record is “extremely spotty”. Mark Webber is generally considered to be in the league behind the front 3 with Button (never having lost to a teammate before Vettel), yet Vettel has done a much more convincing job over him than Hamilton has over Button.

              And Liuzzi didn’t do as well as Vettel. He had been racing in F1 since 2005, yet Vettel outscored him in half a season, taking STR’s best overall qualifying and race result at that point.

              And Di Resta? If Di Resta is still even in the conversation over stuff that occurred 6 years ago, then I could say Alonso, who was only equal with Hamilton in 2007, was beaten by Webber in F3000 in identical spec-cars. Now who has the spotty record? ;)

            3. Drivers evolving , they are not constant throughout they’re carrier.
              If it was so simple as you describe it then there is no reason to have at all f1 races , we could directly crown f1 champion the one that won in GP2, F3 and so on…
              as for Webber driving for Ferrari ….. honestly do you believe he would have more freedom then Massa to challenge Alonso?

            4. @David-A Liuzzi did DO as well as Vettel – it’s only that Vettel managed to get a better result in that one race and that’s what mattered because the other races they were out of the points. If the car was competitive and they had top 10 finishes, Vettel would have lost the points. That’s why points don’t tell the whole story.

              To be honest with you, I REALLY do not know how fast Webber is so I went through his career.

              Webber never dominated the Formula 3000 series – he was 2nd and 3rd. That doesn’t speak evil of him but it certainly doesn’t put him at same level of Hamilton’s prodigious pre-F1 and F1 career.

              Here’s what we know about Mark Webber:
              – 2003 is impossible to tell because of his teammate’s retirements.
              – 2004 he beat Christian Klien
              – 2005 he tied Nick Heidfeld
              – 2005 he beat Antonio Pizzonia
              – 2006 he beat rookie Nico Rosberg
              – 2007 he lost to Coulthard
              – 2008 he beat Coulthard

              So we CAN extrapolate Webber’s performance. Webber is faster than Klien, Pizzonia and rookie Rosberg. Webber is about as fast as Nick Heidfeld and David Coulthard. We have also seen that Webber without KERS issues and bad starts is almost as good as Vettel. We also know that Vettel thrives in a super stable car that picks speed up in the corners which is what the RB6, RB7 and RB8 have shared at their stages of dominations (last 6 races of 2010, 2011, and last 8 races of 2012).

              So we can say that Vettel is as good as Webber in a regular car but definitely better when Adrian Newey’s car handles the corners like glue.

              You gotta hand it to me. This is sublime analysis. Ti nomizeis Kosma?:-)

            5. @freelittlebirds – To claim that Liuzzi did as well as Vettel is to ignore the circumstances surrounding them. As I said, Vettel was a rookie who came into F1 midseason, Liuzzi was far more experienced, and was with Toro Rosso since the start of 2006. Vettel outscored him, having done 7 races, to Liuzzi’s 17, and he never put in the level of standout performances Vettel did in China and Japan.

              Webber didn’t dominate pre-F1 series like Hamilton, but you’ve ignored the point I made regarding him compared to Alonso (which counters your logic regarding driver ability seemingly remaining static, and also points out that not every great driver will win every junior series before F1).

              You pretty much lost all credibility here, by claiming that Webber is “almost as good as Vettel” if not for “issues”. Over the last 4 years, Vettel has outscored him by over 250 points (and I cover issues in the next paragraph). Hamilton hasn’t done the same to Button (although you could argue Hamilton has had more issues than his teammate), even losing in 2011 to a guy who was beaten by Barrichello in ’08, Fisichella and Ralf Schumacher.

              In 2010, it was only Vettel’s misfortune that prevented him from being 70 points clear of Mark, instead of 14. Vettel has also had more mechanical DNFs this year (2-1). I also fail to see where your cliché over Webber being equal in a “regular car” comes from. Webber only beat Vettel in 3 races ALL season, China, Monaco and Silverstone. Vettel was ahead in most of the races this season where Red Bull clearly weren’t fastest, e.g. Australia, Malaysia, Spain, Hungary, Belgium, Italy.

              Instead of twisting clear facts, just accpet it- Vettel is one of the top drivers in F1. Like your Hamilton. Doesn’t mean you can’t root for him. Just reciprocate the respect Vettel fans give your driver, instead of trying to drag his achievements down.

              P.S. Your “sublime” opinion of how supposedly dominant Red Bull have been is being torn apart in the Forum .

    2. Great race, now all we need is rain at Interlagos – and we have ourselves a worthy finale for one of the best F1 seasons of all time!

      1. I just checked the forecast, and it looks like rain!

        1. Let’s hope so. I’m hoping for a 2008 Brazil level of tension !

    3. Great race. -1 came from 2011-style massive gap between top 2,3 and others. COTA is great circuit for sure.

    4. Pretty exciting race. Would have been better if tyres were less conservative.

      1. The fact that the tyres were conservative meant the drivers could push on them and we didn’t hear 100 team messages saying ‘lap delta good driver X’.

        This race should be used as evidence that crumbly tyres are not required for good F1, as many of us have been saying all year.

        1. Yep… I agree. I was certainly skeptical before the race but I’m very happy to be proven wrong. These tires turned out to be just right in the end. They allowed Hamilton & Vettel especially to be on the limit for the entire race. I wouldn’t have had it any other way.

        2. Non-“crumbly” tyres only worked because they were so hard that everyone (possible exception RBR) struggled to get heat into them and therefore grip out of them. So, essentially they had the exact opposite problem this weekend.

          But it might be the way to go perhaps. It definitely seemed to almost negate the aero dependency with people being able to track cars in front of them all the way through the first sector’s sweeps.

          1. Exactly, it worked in the same way that driving on a wet track is much harder. I don’t think giving tyres which always lack grip is any better a solution than Ecclestone’s suggestion for sprinklers.

          2. We’re getting the best of both worlds at the moment, a few one-stop races with harder tyres provide a bit of variety.

            I liked seeing the drivers having to work to get the tyres going after every stop – maybe they should get rid of tyre warmers.

          3. @ral If the cars have less Mechanical grip, then proportionally they will be using more aero grip than normal.

            So if anything it would have made then even more aero dependent, as whilst in dirty air there wouldn’t be much grip to be found at all!

    5. What a race. First time I give a ten. Fantastic track! One of the best.
      One last HAM-MCL win, fought out on the track. All you can dream of.
      And finally the HAM-VET-ALO podium!

    6. Absolutely brilliant race! The lack of grip early on almost made it into a wet race, everyone was sliding about wheel to wheel. Good that the championship is not over as well, so that’s a plus. Also nice to see the best three drivers on the podium for the first time.
      If America doesn’t fall in love with F1 after that, then nothing will convince them.

    7. All through the year and the first time we get a Alo-Ham-Vet podium. The track provided some of the best and most natural overtaking I have seen in any new track. Absolutely superb race with an epic drive from Lewis. And Alonso should thank Lewis for helping limit the damage tremendously. Lewis might want to reconsider his move.

      1. The track provided some of the best and most natural overtaking I have seen in any new track

        I’d certainly have to agree @mahavirshah I loved the overtaking into turn 1 and Raikonnen’s overtake in the S’s was lovely. It was really nice to see the drivers have to actually have to work to gain temperature in their tyres which meant that they were able to attack rather than worrying about babying the tyres and losing out later on. The lack of grip allowed us to appreciate driver skill. America must be proud to have hosted such a thrilling race.

    8. Traverse Mark Senior (@)
      18th November 2012, 20:44

      A generous 8/10
      McLaren will miss Hamilton next year for sure. He’s irreplaceable

      1. and Hamilton will miss McLaren since this is maybe the last Ham’s win in a while.

        1. Haha true!

        2. Yep make the most of it LH you wont be there for quite a while.

          1. The forth place is not like something you wish, after you had a great year as a pilot. So i don’t know if he will regret this move…ever.

            1. @sorin And moving to Merc will likely improve that how?

    9. Best race of the season. Truly an amazing race!

    10. 9 out of 10! The first half especially was thrilling, with battles all the way down the field. It would have been a 10 if Alonso had been anywhere near the leaders, but they were in a different race practically. Hamilton was fantastic. And Button was good value for money today too – lots of great passes.

      The circuit gets a big thumbs up too! Just watching the drivers put their podium Stetsons on – nice touch!

    11. This one will probably make it as the best race of the season !

    12. what a track,
      great clean racing,
      tyre’s were perfect
      championship goes on!
      cow boy hats.

    13. 6; Ferrari left a very sour taste in my mouth, and I couldn’t help but feel Alonso didn’t deserve to finish P3 as a result of that decision by Ferrari.

      1. @xjr15jaaag Alonso is so good that even if he had started eighth I bet he would have finished third. You only have to look at how other drivers and teams around him failed to deliver on their potential. Alonso doesn’t do that. That’s what makes this business of Ferrari ruining Massa’s race to help his all the more disappointing because it isn’t necessary and serves only to diminish Alonso.

        1. Wonder if they’ll have the emasculated Massa take out Seb in Brazil…

          1. Traverse Mark Senior (@)
            18th November 2012, 23:45

            I wouldn’t put it passed them.

          2. they’ll make a golden statue of him in Maranello afterwards. but only right beside a bigger scale one of Alonso’s

        2. Not that sure Keith, Alonso was 39.2 second off the lead at the end of the race and still finished third. So he’s ‘lucky’ no one was in that big gap. Plus should watch again replays of the even-numbers starters (HAM, RAI, HUL, GRO, SEN, BUT…) He would of been in the top 5 surely, but in the podium, I don’t know. But who knows?

          1. Good point! Keith is right in that Alonso doesn’t need much help but based on where Button and others ended up, I think this Ferrari strategy worked brilliantly today.

          2. Given that Massa would have been one of those in front of him before letting him pass, its pretty likely he would have ended up there anyway. Schumacher clearly outdid his car in qualifying so he would drop down anyway.
            Only Webber could have stopped Alonso getting there IMO, and that ended when his car gave up on him.

        3. Even if I’m certainly not a Ferrari nor Alonso fan, Ferrari just show they are professionals. They use a rule to create an advantage. RBR would have done the same. (I’m not sure about McLaren, but thats probably also why Hamilton is shifting away from them even though he couldn’t get a competitive seat somewhere else.)
          I loved Massa’s comment when asked about what was wrong with his gearbox: “We changed it!” he smiled and walked on.

        4. Have to disagree I’m afraid Keith. What Ferrari did was not against the rules and Alonsos race was made at the first corner with his brilliant start from the clean side of the grid. If he had started 8th he would probably have lost a couple of places and been scrapping against cars in the midfield and wasting valuable time. Massa has also been the quicker Ferrari all weekend, so it was even more crucial that Alonso picked up places at the start as his pace wasn’t great.

          Even as it was he was 40 seconds off the lead, and with Webber retiring, Button’s problem in qualifying, Grosjean’s spin and Raikkonen not having that much pace he was very lucky there was no-one in that big gap. What Ferrari did was the correct decision under the circumstances.

        5. @keithcollantine but even the best drivers in the world can have poor starts on the dirty side and be taken out in a mid-pack, turn 1 pile up.

          ferraris move removed that possibility.

        6. Keith
          But who’s to say that he would have passed the cars at the start, had he not been on the clean side of the grid?
          For all we know, he could have been forever stuck behind them.

        7. I don’t think it diminishes Alonso at all and I think Ferrari did the right thing. It was never a matter of starting one spot higher but about the dirty side of the track. Just look how far down most of the dirty side starters fell. A couple of spots lower and he would have been fighting in traffic much longer and perhaps again after the pit stop.

          Alonso had trouble with the conservative “championship-non-effecting” tires all day and I actually doubt that he would have finished higher than 5th (or 4th depending on Massa) without the switch. It’s not impossible that this will have saved them the championship.

          I certainly don’t agree with all the rules in F1 but there is no point in blaming the teams for using them to the full extent.

        8. I think, at this late stage in the championship, Ferrari are justified in what they did.

        9. @keithcollantine that’s a fair point in hindsight, but there was no guarantee that it would have turned out so well.

          There was no way to know Webber would DNF.
          No way to know they would pit Kimi a lap too late
          Or that Grojean would go off at T19 and have his tire temps go off as well (well, maybe, it was Grojean :)
          No way to know if Button would have gone from 11 to 16th and have to work his way through the field.
          No way to know if Button was in front of Alonso that Alonso would have gotten by him.

          You make the best decision you can with the info available. I don’t blame Ferrari, I think the move was cheesy and allowed Alonso to gain positions not on the track or even with pit strategy, and that the decision diminishes his accomplishment today. But Ferrari would have been stupid not to have done it.

      2. Think of it as a great training race for Massa for 2013, he is slowly getting back his mojo, hope he can deliver the same from the beginning of next season.

      3. I hate all this team-orders nonsense, but its within the rules these days so it’s fair enough for Ferrari to take advantage. And at the end of the day, Massa ended up 4th – surely he wouldn’t have gained a higher position than that if he’d started 4th. He didn’t have the pace to beat Hamilton or Vettel, and if he’d been ahead of Alonso he’d have had to yield the position anyway. If anything, Alonso gained more from Webber’s alternator failure than from Massa’s team-inflicted grid penalty.

      4. I don’t have a problem with teams using unconventional tactics within the strict letter of the rules. That has long been integral to Formula One, and probably always will be.

        What I do have a problem with is the myopic view of some people, who think it’s fine when Ferrari or McLaren do it, but call it “against the spirit of the rules” or, worse still, “cheating” when Red Bull does it.

        Either you think its ok to press the rules to their limit, or you don’t. And for all those defending Ferrari here, don’t complain if Red Bull pulls something similar out of the hat in Brazil.

        1. I just thought it was a wasted opportunity for Ferrari to actually change Massa’s gearbox.

      5. @xjr15jaaag
        It was within the rules, so why the long face, pally?
        For me it was 10/10 race. And a very big smile on my face after Vettel lost to Hamilton. A pure bonus for the Tifosi and the championship. :)

        1. Because so are team orders, btw, I think Ferrari did the right thing, but It’s easy to see how manipulating the rules to hurt one of your drivers could upset people.

          Having said that, I think even Massa would understand.

    14. Best race of the season. The battles were awesome. The wheel to wheel action we saw here was so pure, so incredible. There was overtaking everywhere, battles everywhere, watching the cars blast around the first sector battling each other from the distance was tremendous.

      And the title battle in the middle. And the battle for the lead… Well done America… well done ! A 10.

    15. I gave it a 7, Would have been higher had DRS not made passing way too easy.

      I was glad to see Lewis win but a pass for the lead/win shouldn’t be that easy. Has to be one of the worst, most boring overtakes for the lead I’ve ever had the displeasure of watching :(

        1. Has to be one of the worst, most boring overtakes for the lead I’ve ever had the displeasure of watching :(

          It was almost extremely exciting @stefmeister the way seb moved back towards lewis, sebs rear tyre was so close to Lewis’s front wing it almost ended in tears for one or both of them

      1. I beg to differ regarding DRS. The zone was just sufficient to get the cars alongside each other going into Turn 12 – to actually make the move stick, drivers had to fight hard and retain the position through the Turn 13-14-15 complex. Look at Button’s move on Raikkonen as a prime example of how DRS facilitated overtaking into that “stadium” section, rather than making it too easy.

        The “motorway”-style passes which were completed well in advance of Turn 12 were the result of cars having large straight line speed differences due to car setup, tyre condition and so on. And besides, if the pass for the lead really was so easy, why did Hamilton take so long to pull it off? Even with DRS assistance on the preceding laps, Hamilton expended a whole lot of effort chasing down Vettel just to get close enough for a decisive move.

        1. waiting for a cucumber maybe?

    16. Loved it! I wanted to see Vettel win it.
      But it was a brilliant race. Strategy became tough because drivers lost upto 10 seconds bringing the hards up to temperature! Lucky you Pirelli ;)

    17. 8/10 Action throughout the field, and quality from the 3 best drivers in the sport, appearing on the podium for the first time.

      1. The best three drivers in the sport were on the podium today, unfortunately it wasn’t the best three drivers of the weekend/race with Massa up there in third!

    18. Abu Dhabi was voted the best race of the season so far but this race blew it out the water. Great close racing throughout & apart from Webber’s DNF no drivers were gifted places as a result of cars in front not finishing.

      Lewis was on form today & credit to Alonso for his epic start. Shame Button had Kers problems but I don’t think he would have passed Massa.

      Vettel is in the driving seat for the Championship but rain is expected in Brazil so it’s going to be a great end to a great season.

      Come on Alonso!!!!!

    19. Fantastic Race. Fights all around the field, from start to finish and including for the win. Dozens of overtakes, some of them pure driversmanship. Brilliant.

    20. Once again, Alonso maximized his potential, good strategic move by Ferrari. In spite of his outburst due to admittedly very clumsy traffic, a very dignified second place by Vettel, giving props right after crossing the finishing line. Fantastic race by Hamilton, best race he’s driven all year by far. Such a shame he has to leave McLaren.

      One of the best if not the best race of the season. Happy to see the US come into the sport with such a magestic racetrack and such a good crowd.

    21. Awesome race worthy of 10. much better than abhu dhabi – lots of racing not crashing. H.A.M. deserved this win, really brilliant. Alonso with Massa’s help kept drivers championship still quite interesting.

    22. Come on people, it was really good. But best of the season? Just because HAM won?

      1. I really don’t think it had anything to do with HAM winning. Much more to the point is that we actually had an on-track pass for the lead (albeit DRS created), plus great contests for virtually every position in the pack. PLUS contrasting tyre strategies which really worked for BUT and really sucked for ROS.
        Oh, and it’s a great circuit to look at, and the in-car stuff was remarkable.
        That’s why it was a great race.

    23. 9/10. Reminded me of a MotoGP race where the top 2 ran away with everyone else battling it out.

    24. Really loved it, couldn’t believe the start! jumped up several times of excitement! Very happy it will go down to the last race!

    25. The racing was quality all throuought.

      + for looking like an IndyCar race in the midfield for 10,15 laps after the start. There’s certainly an american feel about this track and I think, for the first time since Malaysia was introduced, Tilke got it right.
      + and two thumbs up for Hamilton driving an impeccable race, providing a solid fight at the top and keeping the WDC very much alive.
      + for the good driving standards all over. We’ve had a fair share of overtakes and yet, not even a single incident. Something very much in contrast to what we’ve seen in Abu Dhabi just a couple of weeks ago.
      + for the strong drives of Massa (once again faster than Alonso), Button (can’t remember the last time I saw him so agressive on track), Hulkenberg and the Williams boys.

      – for the midfield being incredibly dull after the first pitstop. Basically nothing happened from Hulkenberg downwards except for a brief scramble with Maldonado and Senna in lap 50 something. But behind them, nothing.

      A well deserved 8 from me.

      However, its all a bit sweet and sour when you start looking at where Alonso finished and how. No matter what’s in store for Interlagos and no matter how much the tires had a say in this race, 40 sec. to the leaders is not a gap to close in less than one week. It will take some VERY exceptional circumstances for Alonso to win the title next week…otherwise, this was it.

    26. that was all F1 is about. Cant ask for more.

    27. 10. I’ve never given a 10 before. Maybe it was helped by the time of day and enhanced TV coverage in the US, but the battle for the lead was race-long, there were battles throughout the field meaning there was too much action for the TV to show. The slippery surface, the lack of tyre worries, the stadium section right after the DRS zone, the T1 hill. So much fun. The intrigue of the Ferrari gear box shenanigans actually added to the entertainment.

    28. lovely racing …. lovely

    29. lovely racing …. awesome

    30. Really wish we didn’t have drs ruining this race.

      it was a good race for the most part but there were way too many boringly easy drs drive-by push of a button passes once again & that pass for the lead was a complete joke, has to be one of the least interesting passes for the lead i have ever seen.

      we had a nice scrap for the lead going on & then it gets ended with a boringly easy pass which really took away a lot of the excitement & just made the end very anti-climactic.

      1. I think the DRS was unecessary given how long the straight is. Perhaps it may have been of use on the pit straight but there was a fair amount of overtaking into turn 1 anyway. I feel DRS made it much to easy for cars such as the Williams to overtake.

    31. I loved watching that. Cat and mouse for the lead for 52 laps!
      Hamilton got a long overdue, very well deserved win. Vettel showed that he’s a great racer, hanging onto Hamilton’s tail right until the end. Alonso seemed to be nowhere on pace and was lucky for Webber’s retirement but still full credit for a massive first lap and for hanging on yet again!

      Plenty of overtakes, especially seeing Vettel, Button, Hulkenberg and Senna battle throughout the race. Some great skill and incredibly brave moves on show. I gave it a 9.

      São Paulo here we come!

    32. It was an astonishing race! A wonderful and ecstatic battle between Vettel and Hamilton who drove brilliantly, without making a single mistake. Also lots of overtaking manoeuvers (i.e. Raikkonen on Hulkenberg and Schumacher) and plenty of battles played their role for the great action we saw on that race. The circuit is amazing and it could be one of F1 greatest circuits. Hats off to Hamilton for a great performance as well

    33. It was an astonishing race! A wonderful and ecstatic battle between Vettel and Hamilton who drove brilliantly, without making a single mistake. Also lots of overtaking manoeuvers (i.e. Raikkonen on Hulkenberg and Schumacher) and plenty of battles played their role for the great action we saw on that race. The circuit is amazing and it could be one of F1 greatest circuits. Hats off to Hamilton for a great performance as well. The set for the final race is set. And it could be a nail-biter

    34. Fantastic, about time, packed stands filled with joyous fans, awesome venue, perfect weather and the hunter passes the hunted late in the race, plenty of great battles throughout the field, what more could one want ? Gave it a 10… and the championship goes down to the last race…perfect!

    35. I gave it a 7. I honestly don’t know why people rate this so high… It was okay, but seriously, tens? Someone please explain!

      1. LoreMipsumdOtmElor
        18th November 2012, 22:06

        I don’t see the point of that either. Spa 98, Brazil 08, Canada 11, Suzuka 94 – those were 10/10. In comparison, the 2012 US GP war merely a 5.

      2. Well, I voted it a 10 because:
        – Good, clean racing, with lots of excellent overtakes from the likes of Button and Raikkonen, not just in the DRS zone, but across the circuit. A stark contrast to the demolition derby we had in Abu Dhabi.
        – A good battle for the lead which we haven’t had in quite a while. Hamilton and Vettel giving it their all throughout the race, hunting for those vital few milliseconds to get within DRS range, and even then, fighting to secure the eventual pass. Rather than one guy streaming off into the distance, we had two of the top drivers dueling head-to-head in close proximity.
        – Superb drives from many different drivers. Vettel and Hamilton battled to the limits of their ability. Alonso did his best damage containment job. Button showed his aggressive side, and Massa showed good pace. Hulkenberg did a good job, as did Raikkonen. Grosjean and Maldonado racing relatively cleanly for once, the former doing very well indeed.
        – Lots of tension during the battles, which was highly enjoyable.
        – The general excitement of seeing a new race at a new circuit, complete with enthusiastic fans, and a better-than-expected race/race result.

    36. It wasn’t a hugely exciting race except from at the front and the battle between the William’s and Hulkenberg in the closing stages and of course the start. I’m left feeling we were robbed of any battle for the lower podium positions after Webber’s retirement and Räikkönen’s slow pit-stop but otherwise a good race, a solid 7.

      Congratulations to Red Bull winning the constructors’ championship!

      1. Given that Alonso also had a slow pit stop, Räikkönen’s merely cancelled that out and gave us pretty much the race we would have had if neither had a problem stop.

        I also wonder if you had your eyes closed for much of the race with great battles in the first half of the race for a very long spell in the midfield (more-or-less everyone behind Alonso). Grosjean was on the move until his spin, Button executed some great moves, as did Räikkönen and Massa also worked his way forwards – very little of the permanent place changes were as a result of pit stops.

    37. My favourite race this season definitely. Tough but fair racing throughout the field, and a brilliantly tense battle for the lead. Couldn’t have asked for more from an inaugral race.

    38. 9/10. Would have preferred more of a struggle for the lead. Vettel took the safe option of yielding to the inevitable and not contesting Hamilton’s pass.

      But behind them were so many wheel-banging overtaking moves I nearly cramped up my sphincter muscle. Exciting stuff. Kept me glued to the screen the whole race because I didn’t want to miss anything.

      1. How does one contest with a DRS enabled Macca that has an xtra 6-8kph on you without DRS? Vettel pulled a 0.5 sec on HAM in the last sector every time and was OK until he caught up Karthikeyan.

        1. brnydevil, that 6-8 kph on the straight came at the cost of downforce, hence time through the twisties, just a different way to skin a cat. But I don’t like DRS either.

    39. Good tyres = Good races!
      It seems silly now that potentially great races at the beginning of the season, were wasted toying with the idea of poor tyres.

      1. @jason12, Righton and even more so as for the 1st half of the season the Red Bulls were less dominant than they have been for the second half.

    40. “Generally” new circuits can have good races for a first race than the years to follow the track wears in proper and teams get on top if it.

      Let’s see next year. I’m not sold on DRS packed overtaking …. just boring, i don’t care how many overtakes there was.

    41. 8/10. Only thing missing was something mega-surprising happening and some more strategic play, but otherwise a thoroughly enjoyable and exciting race. Thankfully it had a few dull moments as well, so I could make a quick trip to the fridge as well :P

    42. LoreMipsumdOtmElor
      18th November 2012, 22:01

      I’d give it a 5, but only thanks to the result which delayed the championship decision. Other than that, it was pretty dull.

      1. Agreed, I think we have strolled into Hamilton’s base camp here. He did a great job, but hardly a 9 or 10 race.

        1. @rodrrico I think you’ve confused Rate the Race with Driver of the Weekend.

          You’re not the first person in this comment thread to make the knee-jerk claim that people are rating it highly because Hamilton won. Yet having read through the comments on the previous two pages I see no reason for you to jump to this conclusion.

    43. Another 10 from me — this was as good as Abu Dhabi, but for different reasons. While Abu Dhabi had drama, incident and talking points, the US GP had fantastic racing throughout the field, a genuine battle for the lead which was going on until a couple of laps to go and all on a great circuit with a fantastic American crowd.

    44. Best race of the year IMO. This race proved a few things –

      (1) Shows that Vettel is definitely a petulat tantrum prone child when things don’t go his way
      (2) RBR molly cuddle Vettel way to much and pander to his petulance. Christains disparaging remaks regarding Lewis’s overtake is simply disrespectul and arrogant.
      (3) Hamilton is definitely better than Vettel – if given the same car; though there might not be much in it.
      (4) The tyres definitely ruined the racing in the earlier part of the year. This so called “ultra conservative” choice allowed drivers to fight and trade lap times; all the way to the end. Something we havent see in a long time.
      (5) Making sure Herman Tilke didn’t have too much input into this track design was definitely the right decision.
      (6) Martin Whitmarsh most certainly regrets he didn’t make a btter effort to keep Lewis in the team, and even probably supported him a bit more during his tenure.
      (7) Red Bull Racing are ceertainly an ultra formidable and competitive team, and deserve an amazing level of respect.
      (8) That as good as Alonso is, the persitent emasculation of Massa to help him has flattered him many many times.
      (9) Button is very happy Lewis is leaving the team; analysing his post race comments.
      (10) This is the best race of the year, by far; and it’s all thanks to the tyres allowing peple to race properly for the first time this season.

      10 out of 10 for me!

        1. (need a facebook thumbs) Agree

        2. @kbdavies
          +3 i agree with….well with all points you make, quite honestly. I really hated how Sky’s commentators, all of them, praised Tilke for the circuit, even though most of the design doesn’t belong to him at all – he even wanted to have less elevation changes.. I also indeed noticed regret on MW’s face when talking about Lewis, he knows he has had 2 great drivers but i think he also realizes now he shouldnt have neglected one of them or put more emphasis on the less quicker one…

      1. Definitely with you on points 4 & 5.

    45. Michael Brown (@)
      18th November 2012, 22:20

      I’ve been very skeptical of this track because of the esses in sector 1 being more or less copied from Silverstone and Suzuka and the slow corners near the end being ridiculous, but it provided plenty of places to close in and perhaps attempt a move, aside from turn 1 and turn 12. The tire choice was fantastic, even though they were conservative there wasn’t an abundance of marbles taking away grip from those who went off line. I can accept boring 1 stop tires if they allow the drivers to race aggressively without the worries of marbles or excessive wear and overheating.

    46. This was the race we’ve all been waiting for, surely? Fantastic, clean battles throughout the pack, an exciting battle for the lead, not too much strategy-at-the-expense-of-real-racing, only 2 DNFs, hardly any “luck” based on someone else’s mechanical retirement (OK, so most of them moved up a spot thanks to Webber’s alternator failure, but it wasn’t a huge deciding factor), no safety car, no dangerous driving – and to top it all off, we got the ultimate podium of F1’s best drivers and the WDC goes down to the wire. Regardless of who you support, you had to love this one. Thank you Austin!

    47. Lewis Hamilton wins (what might be his last win for a while) in my home race, at a great circuit with fantastic battles all race, and Vettel fails to secure the championship, and the title will go all the way to Brazil.

    48. The Pirelli stetsons on the podium were a small but inspired touch and will certainly have helped make the race (and F1) memorable to US fans.

      Can’t remember if this has been done before (I mean swapping the traditional baseball caps for some other headgear with a “local” flavour).

      1. Can’t remember if this has been done before (I mean swapping the traditional baseball caps for some other headgear with a “local” flavour).

        What next? Turbans in India? In the USA of all places, i would have thought the baseball cap was the most apporpriate!

        1. But this was also in Texas – and what a damned fine show they put on!

        2. don’t think there’s any difference between a baseball cap and a regular cap. it was texas, cowboy hats were really the most appropiate! even in the first red bull demo run, the car was chased by cowboys.

    49. Dear Santa

      Alll I want for Christmas is a Pirelli cowboy hat


    50. It was great, but not a 10 or a 9. It was not as good as Abu Dhabi or the Canadian Grand Prix, races I rated with the aforementioned scores, but it was thoroughly enjoyable nonetheless. About as much as you could ask for from a dry race with no safety cars.


    51. It took him 13 years, but Herman Tilke finally seems to have gotten it right. Great cricuit, producing a great race! Before the rce there were worries overtaking would be hard. So me and my friends decided to keep a count, we quit after lap 3 …

      A solid 9 for me, so glad Hamilton won the race and that the gap between Alonso and Vettel is managable. I’m a Vettel fan and an Alonso hater, but I seriously hope Alonso take sthe title in Brazil, imo he just earns it more this year

      1. Where have you been hiding, Herman Tilke came in AFTER the track was designed, he may or may not have made some subtle changes to improve run off areas etc but he definitely did NOT design the track.

    52. An amazing race and an amazing Hamilton made my day!

    53. And for the first time since Hamiltons WDC year he’s beaten Webber in the points. Well done!
      Who was saying that this was a rubbish season and that it was all over weeks/months ago? There were a lot of you, you know who you are. But this has been a corker in my opinion; some excellent performances, lots of winners, new tracks, old enemies, plenty of tactics, just as many foul-ups, and a fight to the last race for one of two potential triple crowns.
      That’ll do me jimmy!

    54. 6 and +1 for H.A.M. win = 7. I think it’s well deserved, this race will no doubt recieve the highest rating for this season – or maybe not, fingers crossed for Brazil !

    55. The slippery track, especially in the early stages made for some tense, exciting moments. Every time cars came close there was that real feeling that the drivers were holding them right on the edge – and yet there was barely any contact and lots of wheel to wheel racing. Add to that a truly interesting and colourful track layout, battles & strong races through the whole field, sunshine and the championship going down to the wire – had to be a 10!

    56. Gave a 10, first because it was a great race with plenty of excitment, second because it was packed and third because of the efort the americans put in to have F1 back again in the US.

    57. Wavering between a 9 and a 10. Thinking a 9, as I don’t think you could ever rate a race a 10, but this is up there with my favorite GP’s ever, having started watching in the 80’s.

      Great show throughout, wonderful track, fair clean racing, overtakes galore and drivers driving flat out till the end, not worrying about the tires falling off a cliff. This is what F1 should be.

    58. Was a solid race, gave it a 7, but 10/10? Where are those folks who save their 10/10’s for when something really amazing happens? And being a motorcycle racing fan, this race provided me with around 70% of what any given WSBK race gives me in terms of excitement, so I’m saving my 10/10 for something special.

    59. Great race. Pure entertainment throughout. I think the US did a brilliant job of putting on a fantastic show, and the drivers went all out from start to finish. Probably race of the year, for me. And we finally got that vettel/hamilton/alonso podium!!

    60. 9. I have no fingernails left. The close racing in the top half of the field was thrilling, even if most of the passes among the front cars were dull inevitabilities on the DRS straight.

    61. The track and venue were great, lots of overtakes and not all in one place (and not all DRS assisted). Lots of action throughout the field (with the exception of Alonso who looked like he had a lonely race). A couple of top drivers coming through the field (Massa and Button). I also thought that some of the TV pictures we had were fantastic (and I can only think of a couple of times where the director cut to the wrong action at the wrong time which is normally an annoyingly regular occurrence).

      The only downer for me was that Massa finished behind Alonso despite being better in both quali and the race, I think if they hadn’t manipulated the grid and had ended up in 3rd/4th formation with Massa letting Alonso through for the podium spot it would have left less of a bad taste in the mouth.

      But form me that was the only real negative of an otherwise excellent race weekend so I make it a solid 9.

    62. Chris (@tophercheese21)
      19th November 2012, 1:26

      Loved it!
      – Hamilton went H.A.M and won
      – great battle for the lead
      – Alonso made a great start and kept the C’ship alive
      – good battle in the mid field between the two Williams and the Hulk
      – Lots of clean overtaking!
      – Did I mention Hamilton won? Coz he did. And it was “Massively Wicked!!!”

      – Wanted Fernando to be able to take it to Vettel a bit more, but HAM and VET were in a league of their own.
      – Schumi did terribly due to his car having a grudge against the tyres.

      1. Chris (@tophercheese21)
        19th November 2012, 1:28

        Oh and Marks KERS failed yet again. Almost predictable.

        1. ya i bet we’ll find out after brazil that seb’s chassis has a made in the UK sticker while marks has made in china webber has been struggling the whole season….

    63. Someone finally caught Vettel and passed him for the lead.
      Vettel can complain that he was balked by a back-marker and that’s how Hamilton got the lead but, in my opinion, if Vettel was in such a commanding position in the race with the best car, how can he explain Hamilton getting by and then he shows absolutely zero ability to pass back? The point is that he cannot pass back, and he’s a whiner when he loses.
      It’s too bad that he doesn’t have the maturity that Alonso does, then I’d root for Vettel.

    64. Best race of the season, on what has proven to be a remarkable race track. COTA at Austin has done Texas proud. A slight critique here: Vettel “whining” about the results, as if he gave sort of gave up the win to Hamilton, is a little petty. Just like all the corners and pit-stops and other track hindrances, back-markers are part of the field that drivers have to negotiate and overcome. That’s racing. All in all, though, this inaugural day at COTA, on this the penultimate race of the season, is one for to be remembered.

    65. A 10 for me. Awesome race!!

      The fight for the lead between Hamilton and Vettel was engrossing. I was at the edge of my seat watching that battle unfold. Though Vettel got held up by the HRT and it was easy pickings for Hamilton. I was expecting Vettel to fight harder to regain that position but that never happened.

      There were lots of NON DRS passes throughout the race which made this race quite different then the others. What stands out is that there were no mechanical failures, no safety car periods yet this track produced the best race of the season. Button was also very good with some nice clean over takes though Schumacher was hell bent on knocking Button out.There was grip off the racing line which enabled drivers to pass in areas where I thought passing would be difficult. Raikkonens pass on Hulkenberg was a joy to watch.
      All in all this race was what F1 should always be.

    66. Enjoyed it, 9/10
      Good battle for the lead all race, never more than 3 secs apart.
      Good battles down the field, aided by Schumi’s plunge down the order though, which was a pity.
      The lack of grip meant cars were on edge a bit and drivers could follow closer

      Just a pity we had the politics before the race- desperate stuff from Ferrari

    67. Vettel can’t win around here. He and Hamilton are very evenly matched in their cars, each with an advantage in different parts of the track AND Hamilton had many many laps with a higher top speed and DRS without being able to pass Vettel. Both drivers had to be massively concentrating to drive lap after lap (how far back was Alonso??) within a second of each other. Then the balance of power is tipped by a back marker on an area of the track where it couldn’t get out of the way.

      So Vettel vents his frustration and anger and he’s “whining?”. Then on top of that, folks hammer him for not passing Hamilton right back.

      Or as Vettel and Hamilton both agreed–Hamilton was faster in the Esses which leads right into the DRS zone, which allowed Lewis to get close each lap to make a run and when he was ahead, to keep Vettel out of the DRS zone. And both agreed that Karthikeyan made the difference. Since Hamilton came out on top, he was a little more philosophical about how things even themselves out. And he’s right. But in the heat of the moment Vettel vented. Like any other driver would. Vettel was asked by Sky after the race about his radio message and he said that he talks all race long, sometimes hot, mostly not, but they broadcast the “hot” ones.

      But somehow Vettel gets hammered for being “immature” then for not being “fast enough in the faster car” to pass Hamilton right back and proving true what people already want to believe about Vettel lol.

      I wonder if people truly appreciate that these guys aren’t playing a video game, that they are in an extremely hot, violent environment (up to 6g decelerations anyone? along with lateral g’s all race long), with their heart rates at 180-190 bpm for 1.5 to 2 hrs and in hyper concentration mode, with extremely fine margins of error and always on a razor’s edge of being out of control. Not to mention 50 plus gear changes a lap, constantly adjust their brakes, etc… These guys are like pilots in aerial combat with high degrees of stress that most of us never experience in our own lives. That’s the beauty of F1 isn’t it? That’s what it means when they say these guys are the best drivers in the world. Then we sit here and criticize them so effortlessly for venting or complaining in the moment?

      Maturity is about making good decisions under extreme circumstances. Vettel, Alonso, and Hamilton are all very mature drivers. They all have vented during races and more often then we hear. But they rarely make bad decisions in the heat of battle.

    68. Hated the final result as I’d have preferred a Vettel win. Nevertheless – I can’t fault the race. Absolutely stunning.

    69. Three races this season I voted 9 VALENCIA ABUDHABI & USA,can’t wait to watch all of them in the winter break

    70. Congratulations to the USA F1 !
      It was an incredible race. I was feeling nervous that the track coulld not present enough passing opportunities but it did !!!
      Really excited about this circuit on future races.

    71. The best Tilke design IMHO. A fantastic race overall. Enjoyed all the off moments drivers had. It has to be the most twitchy circuit. Never seen so many cars wobbling at some point of the race. And Brundle was saying it will be hard to overtake, I thought other wise immediately after following all the free practice and quail.

      The midfield battle was amazing with at least 9 cars within 0.5 to 1 sec splits. But the hounding of Vettel from Lewis was the best part of the race, slowly n patiently Lewis was catching Vettel and he did it with merit. Lewis will be DOTD for me.

    72. Amazing. Amazing. Amazing!!!

      As a fan I am thrilled, as an American I am elated, as a Texan I am beaming!

      Utterly fantastic.

    73. Good race for USGP standard but not the best race of the season. I hate what Ferrari did to Massa. It 1/10 from me.

    74. YAWN!!! That was a borefest!!!! I gave it a 3………..
      Just joking..

    75. I found this a bit processional even though there was a fair deal of overtaking. Good win for Hamilton.

      1. If thats not a joke you should get into something else, cos that was F1 as good as its gonna get!

    76. Great great race. From the start till the wheel banging william. ANd not forgetting the brilliant pass Grosjean pulled off (a shame to cap it off by a stupid blunder but he did put in a great recovery drive).

    77. Thank goodness that Tilke did not do the complete track design, the quality of racing can therefor not be given as credit to him (even though almost all the press says he designed it).

      So i would say thanks to Tavo hellmund and Kevin Schwantz for designing an awesome track that provided a great race on a green track, with promises of more great racing in the future.

    78. That was a fascinating race. Being a fan of Hamilton I was overjoyed to see him win the race. Lap 42 was the turning point where he pulled the DRS assisted move, not good to hear Vettel whining when passed by a faster car. Starting from the dirty side did not cost Hamilton at all which he was concerned about. Neat pit stop with 2.4 seconds stationary time was another feather in the cap for the Woking team. By far Hamilton’s best drive of the season.

      Apart from Hamilton’s drive, there were many exciting on-track events. The move from Button on Schumi at Turn 1 and Grosjean at Turn 16, Raikkonen on Hulkenberg at Turn 2 (that was breathtaking!!), Massa on Raikkonen at Turn 2 and few other non DRS passes added spice to the race.

      Ferrari’s decision to move Massa behind paid off big time. As usual both the cars showed good race pace although took more laps than others to bring the hard compounds to their operating temperature. Raikkonen continued his consistency and Grosjean recovered well from the Turn 19 incident. Unfortunate for Webber with the alternator failure, would have loved to see him put a good fight with the front runners.

      I can continue giving a long summary of my opinion but don’t want to bore anyone :)

      My rating : 10/10

    79. If you think about each drivers race individually, they were all eventful. I’ve never seen so many great drives in one race.

      Gotta be top marks.

    80. Fantastic! Bring on the lottery that is São Paulo. yeehaa


    81. Watching this USGP close racing I’m starting to think that a second 20 lap race with a reversed starting order would be great thing for F1. Anyone?

      1. It would be fun, the problem being that it’s dangerous. the start would be chaos….

    82. Wow wow wow! i don think i’ve ever seen a race with the battles this one had. Don’t know if it was the track, the very hard tires/new asphalt (doubt it, as it hasn’t happened before) or what, but the hairs in the back of my neck were stood up for a long time. And to make it better Vettel’s cruise control didn’t seem to do its job as it usually does, at least as far as LH was concerned

    83. This race was great, brave overtakes, exciting battles and a proper toe to toe rivalry fight for the lead with two of the best drivers in the sport battling lap after lap.

      Fair racing, old school intimidation from Vettel and especially Schumi. Brilliant.

      The track is good but don’t get too excited it was helped by:
      a) the slippery surface this year
      b) Schumi being out of position at the beginning backing the pack up into each other

      Still a lovely 9

    84. 10/10 no way!??
      7/10 more like it, at some parts of the race i was falling asleep.
      Abu Dhabi was better than this def.
      And i’m sick of Tilke’s obsession with acute apexes.

    85. Awesome circuit, and an incredible race throughout, with action from P1 to the midfield.

      Surely Hamilton is proving he is the best driver this year, without the bucket loads of bad luck he would be on for his second title.

      The way he stayed with, passed, and then held off Vettel in his much slower McLaren was incredible, driver of the season without a doubt.

    86. And i’m sick of Tilke’s obsession with acute apexes.

      @howard , you mean hairpins? he didn’t invent those you know, come to think of it he didn’t design the Austin track!

      Were you honestly falling asleep during that race? I’d get checked for narcolepsy if I was you :P

      Can you explain why this wasn’t as good as Abu Dhabi? Maybe you like silly crashes…

    87. Definitely a fantastic race. This track is indeed design for racers.Something very important just come from this and that is the have deep into proof now that the race can be exciting without collisions or risk or other things unnecessary.
      No one is mentioned this, but one important fact I noticed: There was not a single bit of car broken off during the whole race that evening and plate on the front wing! I don’t recall ever seen that before. It was only some wheel bumping. Every retirement was from mechanical failure. I think that we were able to see that these Formula One drivers are much better at avoiding accidents when they have a track designed differently. But, the race was so exciting that the announcers actually notice that point.

      From now on, instead of adding a signature chicane to new race tracks the audit add an S series of curves.

      Every sport is defined by its rules and that’s what makes it interesting. Redbull was complaining because of the hold up to the series of S curves. I for one miss the days when a back marker was supposed to block people trying to pass. So, why don’t they make a compromise and have blue flag areas just on the parts of the track where back-markers can get to the side easily and have special areas non/blue-flag where back-markers can defend their positions.

      I definitely felt like this race track is really giving a new formula for how to build a great Formula One race track. It feels like the dawn of a new era in Formula One.

      1. I apologize for the bit of errors in the first paragraph. I was using voice recognition and missed the mistakes.I meant to say “we have solid proof now…”

    88. I was trying to find something to complain about, but I can’t. Lemme see: 1) The track is just awesome. The long zigzag section is just shockingly good, you miss the best line of a couple or meters and your lap time is gone out of the window. The turn 1 is epic, three corners before the 19 are fantastic. It would benefit from a quicker corner BEFORE the long straight to let more battles at the end of it, but is OK. Those guys did an amazing job. 2) The tires: I think the tires choices were great. 3) Fights everywhere 4) The leader being overtaken!!!!!!!!. 5) With ONE race to go, Kimi is third in the championship, how cool is that?, 6) cowboy hats!!!!
      7) Super Mario Andretti. I feel I need to give this race a 10.
      For the TV: several cameras where “shooting into the light” (with the Sun in front of them) and so several cars “looked” the same, all dark. For next year, put the cameras in a different angle to let viewers know which cars are they following.
      All in all 10/10

    89. One other fantastic coincidence:
      Did anybody notice that Alonso, Hamilton, and Vettel together on the podium were arranged as red, white, and blue. A perfect picture for a perfect return to F1 in the USA.

      1. Oh, so Hamilton was destined to overtake Vettel – interesting.

    90. 10.
      This race had the exciting battles we saw in Abu Dhabi, great recovery drives like Alonso in Valencia, but it also had a battle for the lead which was thrilling and there were no penalties handed for silly driving like two weeks ago. Probably in the end there could have been a little more excitement, but this race was awesome and I couldn’t have asked for more.

    91. 9’s and 10’s?

      Good, but not that good. I might have to bother watching the last half of the race now… or not.

      In the last few races, I’ve watched two on fast forward, skipped one entirely, watched half of this one, and only watched abu dhabi in full. I honestly don’t feel like I’ve missed out on much.

    92. Said by @david-a: “Instead of twisting clear facts, just accept it- Vettel is one of the top drivers in F1. Like your Hamilton. Doesn’t mean you can’t root for him. Just reciprocate the respect Vettel fans give your driver, instead of trying to drag his achievements down.” to @freelittlebirds.
      Very well put, even if the discussion behind it was more or less based on the false thesis that drivers performance are almost static over their career – just watch Massa or Schumacher.

    93. I gave it a 9.

      Reasons why I may have overrated the race:
      1. I was there, it was my first in-person race and it was awesome. So I’m inclined to overrate.
      2. I’m a Button fan and a McLaren fan and I’ll admit that I enjoyed the HAM win and Button’s nice move up the track.
      3. I haven’t yet watched the telecast, so I haven’t actually “seen” the race

      Reasons why I think I may have NOT overrated it:

      1. Lots of clean, fair and exciting wheel-to-wheel racing.
      2. An actual pass for the lead and numerous passes in the middle of the points for position.
      3. I was there and it was my first race in person and it was awesome :)

    94. I gave this one an 8. I felt that for a new track this provided a great race and especially after everyone was saying it won’t be a classic after practice and qualifying with the tyres not suiting the track.

      We saw some good battles and some good wheel to wheel racing, comparing that to Abu Dhabi the drivers looked World Class again. Interesting to see drivers work their way through the field like Button and also Alonso and Massa.

    95. Good, solid race. The only thing I can mark it down on is Alonso’s inability to catch Webber on merit, that didn’t really make for much in the way of entertainment but other than that it was good to watch. Vettel clinging on to Hamilton like he did was very impressive, watching them two behave like an elastic band around the circuit; closing an opening gaps at their various strong and weak points.

    96. I gave it a 9.

      A great race,I only saw the BBC highlights but there seemed to action all the way through the race, and we had a good battle for the lead.

      The circuit defiantly seems like a good one.

    97. The rate was a solid 10. Anything better would have had Kobayashi in 2nd. and Rosberg in 3rd.

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