Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Monza, 2014

Hamilton voted Driver of the Weekend for third time

2014 Italian Grand Prix

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Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Monza, 2014The Italian Grand Prix saw Lewis Hamilton take his first pole position since Spain and his first victory since Britain – and he duly won the Driver of the Weekend poll for the third time.

It wasn’t a straightforward lights-to-flag victory for Hamilton, who had a problem with his car at the start and had to make his way back to the front having fallen to fourth.

This marks Hamilton’s eighth appearance in the top three of the vote this season, while team mate Nico Rosberg is still yet to win a Driver of the Weekend vote this year despite leading the points standings with six rounds remaining.

Daniel Ricciardo was voted second after his late race charge which included an impressive pass on team mate Sebastian Vettel. This is Ricciardo’s ninth appearance of the season and means he has now been voted in the top three for the last four races. Sergio Perez scooped 12% of the vote to take third.

1. Lewis Hamilton

Started: 1st
Finished: 1st

Driver errors or mechanical failures in the last six qualifying session had kept Hamilton from pole position but he finally broke the chain in Italy.

He looked to have the upper hand from the first practice session, and would probably have topped all three had he not suffered more mechanical trouble on Saturday afternoon.

Nonetheless he secured pole position, but within seconds of the lights going out he lost the advantage to to a fault with his car’s starting system. That left him needing to pass Felipe Massa, Kevin Magnussen and team mate Rosberg to reclaim the lead.

Magnussen and Massa were picked off during the first stint. Radio messages indicated Hamilton was advised by his team to hand back from Rosberg and conserve his tyres following his single pit stop, although in an un-broadcast message he was also told “if you think you’ve got an opportunity you take it”.

That he did – when Rosberg out-braked himself at the Rettifilio second for the second time Hamilton was perfectly placed to take advantage.

This was his weekend all the way. Led two out of three practice sessions (would have probably been all three if not for his second practice glitch), led all three qualifying sessions, won the race, fastest lap.

He also stayed calm after his RS mode problems and went on to prove that racer’s instinct trumps strategist’s analysis.

He couldn’t have done any more to prove that he was completely over what happened in Spa, and he’s given Rosberg a lot to think about.
Lewis McMurray (@celicadion23)

Faultless all weekend, comfortably quicker than his team mate, and was only held back by technical failures outside of his control. Won anyway.
Pete (@repete86)

If this was driver of the race then I would have given it to Ricciardo due to his overtakes, but for whole weekend it has to be Hamilton.
Duncan Brokensha (@broke84)

2. Daniel Ricciardo

Daniel Ricciardo, Kimi Raikkonen, Monza, 2014Started: 9th
Finished: 5th

Ricciardo was out-qualified by Vettel in Italy – the scoreline between the pair is now 7-6 against the four-times champion – but hit back in the race.

He got a poor start and ran a long opening stint, but that allowed him to go on the attack with fresher tyres in the second half of the race.

After picking off a string of rival teams’ cars he put a lid on another impressive performance by outfoxing Vettel with a cunning move at the Roggia chicane to take fifth.

I’m aware of the fact that his team mate was quicker all weekend, and that Hamilton was unbelievably fast all weekend. But the race craft Ricciardo showed beats the raw pace Vettel, Hamilton or anybody else showed in my opinion.

Yes he was on better tires, but that doesn’t make the moves he put on Button and Vettel etc any less impressive. In my opinion he had an ‘Alonso 2012’ kind of race.

I could not help ignore his massive late charge although on fresher tyres. The Renault engine was nothing compared to the Mercedes, and still he bought the horse (bull) home pretty well.

3. Sergio Perez

Sergio Perez, Force India, Monza, 2014Started: 10th
Finished: 7th

Perez decisively put one over Nico Hulkenberg at Monza, although damage was found on his team mate’s car after the race.

Nonetheless Perez did the better job in qualifying and it was clear from his team radio messages during the race how impressed they were with his performance.

He made the most of his opportunity and prevailed in a fantastic clean fight with Button. Perez also showed restraint by not getting into a battle with Magnussen – whom he did not need to fight due to the McLaren driver’s penalty – and kept Force India in the thick of the championship fight with the silver cars.

Perez thoroughly out-qualified Hulkenberg, which is no easy feat then did a great job in the race with a car that didn’t seem as fast as the McLaren. Managed to keep Button at bay and caught up to Magnussen to claim an eventual seventh.

Hamilton, Ricciardo and Bottas were good, but I felt Perez was the only one who outperformed his car and team mate consistently. Plus his duel was by far the most exciting of the race.

2014 Driver of the Weekend results

AustralianKevin Magnussen (48.4%)Valtteri Bottas (24.5%)Daniel Ricciardo (14.1%)
MalaysianLewis Hamilton (54.3%)Nico Hulkenberg (24.0%)Sebastian Vettel (6.5%)
BahrainLewis Hamilton (49.2%)Sergio Perez (25.7%)Daniel Ricciardo (16.6%)
ChinaFernando Alonso (47.7%)Lewis Hamilton (30.7%)Daniel Ricciardo (7.8%)
SpainSebastian Vettel (51.9%)Lewis Hamilton (20.5%)Romain Grosjean (11.0%)
MonacoJules Bianchi (60.2%)Nico Rosberg (11.5%)Daniel Ricciardo (8.8%)
CanadaDaniel Ricciardo (44.9%)Nico Rosberg (22.4%)Sergio Perez (9.5%)
AustriaValtteri Bottas (41.7%)Lewis Hamilton (15.1%)Sergio Perez (14.3%)
BritainValtteri Bottas (52.5%)Fernando Alonso (18.5%)Jenson Button (11.8%)
GermanyValtteri Bottas (37.1%)Lewis Hamilton (33.8%)Daniel Ricciardo (10.4%)
HungaryFernando Alonso (40.2%)Lewis Hamilton (29.3%)Daniel Ricciardo (25.1%)
BelgiumDaniel Ricciardo (44.4%)Kimi Raikkonen (17.0%)Valtteri Bottas (12.2%)
ItalyLewis Hamilton (38.9%)Daniel Ricciardo (18.1%)Sergio Perez (12.0%)

2014 Italian Grand Prix

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    Image © Daimler/Hoch Zwei, Red Bull/Getty, Force India

    30 comments on “Hamilton voted Driver of the Weekend for third time”

    1. Interesting to note that despite Hulkenberg generally being rated as better than Perez; the latter appears in the Driver of the Weekend top 3 no less than four times, while Hulkenberg only appears once.

      While I’m among those that think Hulkenberg is a massive talent, I have to say Perez has impressed me a lot this season, even if his high’s are very high and his low’s are very low! If Force India can keep this line-up then they can be a ‘force’ (pardon the pun!) to be reckoned with over the coming years.

      1. +1 Precisely what I noticed as soon as I saw the table. Definitely a seat worthy driver

      2. That’s because Perez performs well above average on a few high speed circuits (Canada, Monza) and gets attention for those races.

        Hulkenberg is more an all round performer doing well on pretty much all tracks, but he never seems to perform overly well (or has trouble in the races where he could) to get that bit of extra attention.

        Trouble is, Perez performs well below average on the other 15 or so tracks (or crashes out on the ones that he does like) and therefore Hulkenberg get’s way more points over a season.

        Perez has done this every season so far. Few good races that he’s remembered for and invisible during the rest of the season. Lucky for him, people tend to remember the few good ones better than all those lackluster races that make up the bulk of his results.

      3. The thing is that when Perez has a good day, he is remarkable to watch. In Hulkenberg’s case though, he is so clean and good, that he does not have a bad day by virtue of his driving skills, and remains consistent.

      4. Agreed. I was always kind of luke-warm on Perez, but this season he has shown both maturity and consistent pace. What an unbelievable lineup for a mid pack team!

        Would be interesting to see what he could have done in this year’s McLaren

        1. This year’s McLaren in probably worse than the Force India, you know that right?

      5. Indeed. For me, he has impressed to a certain degree every season, even last season as he showed the consistency he didn’t have in 2011 and 2012. This has been his most impressive season though. After being dropped by a top team so late in the year, he has responded by putting in a string of impressive drives whilst also being consistent in a car that is a bit hit and miss. And that battle with Button was tremendously driven.

    2. Formula Indonesia (@)
      17th September 2014, 12:42

      Ricciardo is very consistent, that’s why he beat Vettel

      1. Ricciardo isn’t just consistent, he’s just better than Vettel. In this season, he has taken 3 wins while Vettel has nothing! You could argue that Ricciardo has had some good luck, but then again Vettel had some good luck in 2010-2013. The way Ricciardo is going about this year is making me think: Did Sebastian Vettel take the car to the championship or did the car take Sebastian Vettel to the championship? Right now, I’m thinking the latter. And just think, If Ricciardo was in the RBR seat from 2009-2013 he would maybe be a five-time world champion. Including 2009. Vettel is probably the weakest four-time world champion ever.

        1. Ouch.
          You’re not factoring in how the new v6 generation of cars are completely different to drive?Mark Webber reported along the lines that Sebastian Vettel was the simply the best driver of the V8/Pirelli era. Because he hasn’t taken to the new V6 cars like a duck to water does not make him a “Weak four-time world champion”.

          Also, credit to RIC, to me he is by far the best driver in these new gen cars!

          1. It’s interesting to note though that the beaten team mate has a lot to gain from telling people that their superior team mate is the best driver on the grid. Vettel clearly had a performance advantage through those years

        2. You have to explain me how “Vettel had some good luck in 2010-2013”. He was in the best car but I can’t see how his championships were due to luck. The 2007 and 2008 championships on the other hand …

    3. There are only 2 races this year where Hamilton has finished but not been voted in the top 3.

      1. Good observation.

      2. He has had bad form and/or bad luck in a lot of qualifying sessions, so he has started lower down the grid. He has had the car/skill to get to the front which has made for some impressive drives.

        Drivers who have regularly qualified more in line with their car’s performance have not had the opportunity to make so many impressive drives.

        1. @ians I hardly call his Hockenheim recovery ‘impressive’. One of the easiest tracks to overtake and he was in a car a second faster than anyone else. Hungary was also due to a lot of luck, and in Austria he had an impressive start but average race afterwards. I think this year the poll shows people vote for driver favouritism more than actual impressive drives.

          1. Formula Indonesia (@)
            17th September 2014, 16:40

            Agree, I wonder how will Lewis fans react if : their results in next 5 races : ROS : 1 DNF (mechanical), 3 wins, 1 runner up, HAM : 2 wins 3 runner up. Which meant that Rosberg lead Hamilton by 11 points, I wonder what will happen if Lewis wins because double points while Nico finish 2nd, i’m not saying Lewis is a bad driver, but he could be lucky too if he win championship, same as Nico.

            1. As a Lewis fan going to the Abu Dhabi finale, it does not matter how Hamilton wins, I will be partying my face off.

              In my head, Rosberg is nowhere near Lewis’ level in talent and I doubt anything he does this season will change my mind. If Ham wins due to the point system, I’d have that ouuu feeling for Rosberg, but I’ll probably rationalise it through equalling out Lewis’ mechanical failures. If Rosberg wins “because” of the point system I will boo him on the podium (sorry not sorry). That said, if Rosberg wins on merit, then fair play to him, he will get my applause. I completely understand how biased this all is, but I guess that’s what being a fan is about. No matter who wins though I will be getting completely trollied that evening.

          2. To be honest, Hamilton has been more interesting to watch than Rosberg this year, who has had much more luck than Hamilton, and hasn’t really come from the back of the grid to finish on the podium yet.

            1. Worse yet, the few times that Rosberg did drop back a few places he never was able to really recover.

              For instance Hungary where he dropped back a few places the first time the safety car came out. Yet Alonso and Hamilton were (way) behind him and still ended up ahead.

              People say it’s all so easy to come from the back in a fast car like Hamilton did, but Rosberg showed how difficult it really is. Even if his car wasn’t just completely rebuild and untested after a fire.

    4. Hamilton deserved to be voted driver of the weekend, but he needs performances like that now till the end of the season. His only hope then is that Nico has atleast several DNF’s, which is going to be a lot to ask!

      1. That’s not true. If he simply beats Nico in the remaining races, he’s champion. No need to rely on bad luck for Rosberg.

        1. And even if HAM beats ROS into 2nd for the next 5 races ROS only has to win the double-pointer at Abu Dhabi to be champion. What a stupid system.

      2. Formula Indonesia (@)
        17th September 2014, 16:27

        Then what about if Nico win next few races and then he retire in Abu Dhabi while Lewis win because the double points

    5. Metaphorical DOTW Standings (1st = 3pts, 2nd = 2pts, 3rd = 1pts)

      1.Hamilton – 19
      2.Ricciardo – 14
      3.Bottas – 12
      4.Alonso – 8
      5.Perez – 5
      6.Vettel – 4
      =.Rosberg – 4
      8.Bianchi – 3
      =.Magnussen – 3
      10.Raikkonen – 2
      =.Hulkenberg – 2

      1. Formula Indonesia (@)
        17th September 2014, 14:58

        good stats, but in DOTW we picked the best, not the 2nd or 3rd

        1. Someone gets the most votes, then someone gets less, etc. You can extrapolate 2nd and 3rd, etc. No need to vote directly.

    6. Well done to Lewis. He’s driven well all season

    7. Where is rosberg? Now
      he is the top pointer. As we know, he is only lucky man.
      he is not harder than lewis.

      1. You started strong but the haiku unfortunately fell apart in the middle.

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