Start, Circuit de Catalunya, 2016

Vote for your 2016 Spanish Grand Prix Driver of the Weekend

2016 Spanish Grand Prix

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Which F1 driver was the best performer during the Spanish Grand Prix weekend?

Review how each driver got on below and vote for who impressed you the most during the last race weekend.

DriverStartedFinishedRace changeLap 1 changeHighest positionLowest positionGap to team mate*
Lewis Hamilton1
Nico Rosberg2
Sebastian Vettel63+3+2144.965
Kimi Raikkonen52+3016-4.965
Felipe Massa188+10-162035.436
Valtteri Bottas75+2+147-35.436
Daniel Ricciardo34-1+21643.95
Max Verstappen41+3+214-43.95
Nico Hulkenberg11-11017
Sergio Perez97+2+2717
Kevin Magnussen1514+1+212182.786
Jolyon Palmer1713+4+21019-2.786
Daniil Kvyat1310+3+2919Not on same lap
Carlos Sainz Jnr86+2+5313Not on same lap
Marcus Ericsson1912+7+21220-13.917
Felipe Nasr2015+5+481913.917
Fernando Alonso10+1713
Jenson Button129+3+4715
Pascal Wehrlein2116+5+31220-14.748
Rio Haryanto2217+5+2102014.748
Romain Grosjean14+4219
Esteban Gutierrez1611+5+2517

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 2016 Spanish Grand Prix weekend?

  • Lewis Hamilton (2%)
  • Nico Rosberg (1%)
  • Sebastian Vettel (1%)
  • Kimi Raikkonen (3%)
  • Felipe Massa (1%)
  • Valtteri Bottas (0%)
  • Daniel Ricciardo (8%)
  • Max Verstappen (76%)
  • Nico Hulkenberg (0%)
  • Sergio Perez (1%)
  • Kevin Magnussen (0%)
  • Jolyon Palmer (0%)
  • Daniil Kvyat (0%)
  • Carlos Sainz Jnr (6%)
  • Marcus Ericsson (1%)
  • Felipe Nasr (0%)
  • Fernando Alonso (1%)
  • Jenson Button (1%)
  • Pascal Wehrlein (0%)
  • Rio Haryanto (0%)
  • Romain Grosjean (0%)
  • Esteban Gutierrez (0%)

Total Voters: 709

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Looking for the driver-by-driver race notes? These will appear as part of a new article tomorrow.

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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157 comments on “Vote for your 2016 Spanish Grand Prix Driver of the Weekend”

  1. Max Verstappen, easily. Honourable mentions to Ricciardo for another good drive and the two Mercedes drivers for making this race exciting. Good job Nico and Lewis!

    1. hear, hear!

    2. And let’s not forget both Ferrari’s to push both Red Bulls to the limit. And last but not least, Helmut Marko, if it wasn’t for his decision, we would probably have hailed Kimi Raikkonen for his amazing tyre management.

      1. Nice twist on Marko and Kimi !! ;o)

    3. Is this even a contest?!

      1. I think it should be. He was out qualified by his team mate. He was behind after the start and followed until he inherited the lead when his team mate pitted, which in hindsight was a terrible move.

        Certainly a solid drive. But, not exactly the normal comments I should be able to make about a “no contest” drive I think.

        1. In his first race in an unfamiliar car. I think he was already a candidate for dotw and would have gotten a healthy percentage of votes even if ‘all’ he did was podium. Not his fault he inherited the lead and then ‘all’ he did was keep it together until the end after being in a close field all day.

          1. He had a very good race. But people are hyping it like it’s the drive of the century.

            I don’t think a no contest dotw should inherit the lead. If Ric had have been given a two stop and not had a puncture I don’t think Max would have won.

            I also don’t buy that an unfamiliar car is as big an issue as people are saying, for some drivers, sure. But we have heaps of examples of drivers coming out and doing well straight away.

            Should Vestappen be dotw? Sure. But I think it’s more because everyone else was so underwhelming than him being particularly spectacular.

        2. To the Max !
          16th May 2016, 16:03

          They knew Verstappen wasn’t able to squeeze out the last couple of tenths in qualifying because of unfamiliarity with the car, so they worked on setting the car up in race trim (making him a bit slower in qualifying but a bit faster in the race).

          He was only meant to get a solid 6th or 5th (when one of the top runners would have gotten in trouble) for the points, but he gave them right away much more as that. Now seeing he got the absolute maximum in what he could do given the situation, I can’t see why that’s even debatable.

          1. “they worked on setting the car up in race trim”

            Can you source this?

            “He was only meant to get a solid 6th or 5th”

            Do you mean he exceeded expectations? Sure, it was his first drive, he won, that’s undoubtable.
            But you have to remember, without the Mercs taking each other out and Ricciardo’s misfortune, he’d probably have been 4th.

        3. Simon (@weeniebeenie)
          16th May 2016, 16:10

          @mike you forgot the excellent overtake around the outside of Vettel on the first lap.

          1. No doubt that was an excellent move.

  2. really? Do we have to vote for this? ;) Verstappen is the only one

    1. Arguably still, I think, considering the fantastic qualifying lap and the fact for no fault of his own he came fourth Ricciardo is for me the best driver. Verstappen was gifted this win by Red Bull’s poor strategy on Ricciardo’s side, lets not forget. Verstappen did a faultless job after the gift but it was a team gift nevertheless.

      1. Fact is Ricciardo made a really bad and riskfull move on Vettel.
        He came in way to fast and needed to much of the track, Vettel easily cut back in to third.

        If Ricciardo had been more accurate he could have easily overtaken vettel then and there, after this move his pace dropped.

      2. Andre Furtado
        16th May 2016, 0:59

        Ric had the fastest strategy but like vettel failed on it.

        1. In hindsight it was clearly the wrong strategy to be on.

      3. A driver still has to have put himself in position to benefit from a ‘gift’. Max did that starting on Saturday.

    2. Well apparently – Some even vote for Hamilton and Rosberg! Oh dear… ;o)

  3. As a Dutchmen this is a very easy poll.
    Thank you Max!

    1. +1 but i will rate this race not an 10 was too boring for that

      1. I would not be too sure of that. Was interesting from the lap 1, till the last last. All four of the front runners were in the contention for #1.

        And then 18 year old Max won it in his first drive in a rather unfamiliar car !!! I would say that wasn’t “boring”.

        Stellar performances. Great drives. And if this was not enough, great little skirmishes down the grid too. Sainz and many others.

    2. as an anyone who watched this race this poll is very easy.

  4. Adam (@rocketpanda)
    15th May 2016, 15:53

    Verstappen will probably win – and is a worthy winner, but I chose Ricciardo.

    Brilliant qualifying and deserved far more than fourth in the race – I tend to think Red Bull gambled on his strategy and it didn’t pay off. But I think his job out there was peerless, so I give it to him.

    1. Left the track on his only overtaking attempt though …

      I really don’t understand how anyone could vote for anyone else than Verstappen or maybe Sainz.

    2. Same here. I thought Ricciardo did everything better, it was the strategy that stole the win

  5. I think Max was wonderful.
    But over the whole weekend, it makes more sense to give it to Dan Ric. He had that great lap in qualy, putting Max in his place, and he almost certainly would have won the race if he’d gotten the better strategy. So I think he was just a tad better than his teammate overall, although that new teammate will deserve the win in this vote, I guess.

    1. Was he better though? He didn’t look better when Verstappen was closing in on him and managed to keep his tyres alive for much longer.

      1. That’s the thing isn’t it? Max could deliver the same race-pace but with less tyre-wear.

    2. not bad for a #2.

    3. Just heard in an interview Ricciardo was put on a more agrressive strategy cause he was holding up Verstappen a bit.

      1. Source?

        1. Imagination, probably. I’m beginning to see a pattern in fancyful made up explanations. They all start with this kind of vague introductory half-sentence that cannot be confirmed or refuted, followed by a speculation that would fail to pass several tests of plausibility if not for the reference to some kind of nebulous authority in the introductory half-sentence.
          The easiest explanation for Ricciardo’s strategy is that Red Bull were reacting to Vettel’s aggressive strategy, who in turn had no other choice than attempting the undercut. In the end, both Ricciardo and Vettel were caught out by the surprising realisation that it was indeed possible to spent half the race distance on the mediums, as proven by their team mates.

          Btw: Verstappen wasn’t really under threat from Räikkönen, he would’ve even benefitted from getting DRS behind Ricciardo. So even if Ricciardo did hold up Verstappen a bit, that would not’ve been a reason to change the strategy. Not if you’re leading the race with both cars.

          1. To the Max !
            16th May 2016, 16:18

            Have you ever heard of something called an undercut?

            De Ferrari’s were closing in on the Bull’s, and because they wanted to win at all costs, the strategy got split to prevent that from happening. Next time Verstappen simply could face the wrong end of the stick because at Red Bull they try to cover “all” bases.

            Red Bull now can really put the pressure on Ferrari when having two drivers who are capable of threatening them instead of just one.

          2. Is that a reply to my comment? Just wondering, because I’m explicitly referring to an undercut.

          3. If that was meant to cover of Vettel if was a massive blunder. He was never going to come up ahead. Maybe if they had of pitted him straight away.

    4. Andre Furtado
      16th May 2016, 1:00

      He completely butchered the fastest strategy. Same as vettel.

      1. Vettel’s strategy was horrible. Simply horrible. He should have gone in for another set of softs some 13 laps to go, he would have reached the top 3 with the possibility of passing.

        1. Don’t know why, but afterwards its clear that several teams/drivers got their tire strategy wrong on race day. On the front it was definitely both Vettel and Ricciardo who lost out due to this. One of the few that really did well was Massa. Think he gained 10 positions or so during the race. Renault was even so extreme to put their drivers on the hard tire. A total disaster. When Magnussen changed to the soft around lap 55, he was immediately 3.4 secs faster per lap than his own teammate.

  6. Well this is gonna be onesided.

  7. Been following F1 since ’98, just experienced best feeling ever! “Our” youngster wins a Grand Prix. Grownup men crying in the tv-studio, people around me with tears in their. Absolutely the best!

    On a side note: driver of the day: I’d say Kyvat? ;)

  8. Surprised if Max doesn’t get 100%. Daniel Ricciardo was the raciest out there as usual and would have taken DOTW if it wasn’t for the epoch-making performance of the youngest ever F1 race winner.

    1. Today, Vettel’s defence performance made Dan dissapear, literally.

      1. Sviatoslav (@)
        15th May 2016, 16:26

        antoine-de-paris – do not tell such thing any more. I understand that everyone can their opinions. But here the track doesn’t allow you to overtake. Add the fact that the Renault power unit is far behind the one of Ferrari…
        Considering these facts, I must tell that your comment is not correct at all. Vettel did nothing special. Even Kimi, having around 20km/h higher speed, wasn’t able to overtake Max.

        1. Ferraris power unit is better but last sector was much better for RBRs car, thats why Kimi was 0.5-0.6 behind Verstappen in sectors 1 and 2, but in the last corner Verstappen was able to increase the gap to 0.8 seconds and that isn’t enough to make clear or almost clear overtake in the first corner.. same reason Vettel was in real trouble with Riccardo, old tires + Riccardo was able to get really close in the last corner and the gap when the straight started was only like 0.450 seconds.

          Raikkonen would have needed only 1 error from Verstappen in the last corner to try to overtake, but Verstappen kept his cool and made no mistakes… for over 20 laps! Fantastic drive from the young dutchman :)

    2. I read that Ricciardo was the ‘racist’ out there :P

  9. It’s between Bottas and Sainz for me. I’m sorry but the top four just didn’t do enough for me. Ricciardo did a stellar job in qualifying but his moves in the race were too desperate. Verstappen had a great Sunday but got lucky with the strategy and didn’t outqualify his team mate. Raikkonen did the job on Saturday but he also got lucky with strategy whilst Vettel just didn’t do the job on either day. Meanwhile Bottas and Sainz had quiet weekends and managed to put their respective cars into positions they really did not belong in, and walked over their respective team mates. But the Finn just edges it in my books. Useful performance again this weekend when he struggled in the first three races. Always goes well here.

    1. Get a live, racing is not about qualifying but about racing..
      When you outqualify your teammate on his first outing with a new car is one thing, but on Sunday the points are given.
      But I guess dear Craig, you are fed up with Lewis making a mess of it again and lucky for him hie fellow countryman race steward helpen him out in not gettin a penalty for the incident.
      A guy of 18, exploiting his talent wins the race, hail, hail to the new king…

      1. MG421982 (@)
        15th May 2016, 17:20

        Yeah, yeah, but let’s not forget RIC did 1 stop more!! That’s like 18s. He finished 6s behind VES. You do the math who would have had won if RIC was on a 2 stopper too!!

        1. That’s not how it works. The extra pit stop gave RIC fresher tyres, so it’s always a choice between one more stop and faster lap times or one less stop and slower lap times.

          1. Indeed, that Corrado-dub is a dub….

      2. @auria Right. Firstly, I have a life thank you. Secondly, Saturday is part of the weekend. Thirdly, do not make assumptions about my views on certain incidents without asking. The crash was simply avoidable from both sides and the call by the stewards was spot on. Look at my twitter. As soon as I saw more angles I deemed it a racing incident and I stood by that view since.

      3. @auria That was an incredibly rude comment.

    2. Yes, I mostly agree with you:
      Not Max. Ric deserved the win more than him. And would have won, save for RB’s strategic botch.
      But not Ric either. He should have made short work of Seb. He didn’t
      Not Kimi, he should have been able to overtake Max.
      Not Seb, pretty good defense from Ric but that’s it.

      Agreed, Valteri Bottas did a pretty good job all weekend. But my vote goes to Carlos Sainz. I can’t think of anything he could have done better.

  10. Lewis Hamilton. The race wont get this spectacular if not for his actions.

    1. Came here to say this.

      1. Absolutely agree

  11. Has to be Max, very controlled drive. Credit to Ricciardo though too, very unfortunate with the puncture.

    Also credit to Sainz, can’t imagine it’s been easy to see his old teammate get promoted but he responded in the best possible way. Red Bull house looks very strong.

  12. Ric absolutely lost his fight with Seb, so cannot vote him. His overtake attempts were low-quality, Seb made him go overlimit and destroy tires. Voted Max, he deserved it today.

    1. Ricc also didnt think bigger… Seb saved his tires for the last 10-12 laps… And started to shave time from 7 to 4.2 in Less than 3 laps.. If ricc would followed him he could have been 1st or 2nd… He attacked too early

      1. Given Kimi was quick at the end too, I would suggest that maybe the Ferrari was just hanging on to the grip longer.

  13. This is a bit quicker than usual @keithcollantine !

    1. Omar R (@omarr-pepper)
      15th May 2016, 16:08

      @david-a maybe he will send our opinions and the poll’s result to FOM, and become the real official “Driver of the Day” poll!!!

    2. ColdFly F1 (@)
      15th May 2016, 18:34

      @david-a, I guess because DOTW and the statistics item will be ‘easy’ items this weekend.

  14. Hamilton who came from behind and created the most exciting GP in years. This is a “protest vote”, young Max deserves the highest kudos — but for the first time in a long while I find myself agreeing with Bernie that Mercedes domination must be stopped. Hamilton put Bernie’s dream to work quite brilliantly.

    1. Yes, Verstappen will win it but… Hamilton got the pole and magnanimously opened the door for a great race. Consequently, he inevitably is the real driver of the week. It’s an extraordinary achievement.

      1. ColdFly F1 (@)
        15th May 2016, 18:39

        Hamilton (again) lost the race to the 1st corner, which is more important than achieving pole! @alexde

        1. I remember you commenting about the same thing.. and I agree.

      2. You think he will go on to be the driver of the year?
        I am of course talking about Hamilton, letting another driver win the WDC this year. ;o)

    2. It’s not Mercedes’ fault. If they don’t dominate, somebody else will, that’s how it works, and it was always like that.

  15. The driver of the day is Verstappen for sure but the poll is driver of the weekend. So i go for Kimi.

    1. ColdFly F1 (@)
      15th May 2016, 18:47

      @jedimaster9, surprised about a vote for Kimi.
      RIC and HAM were more amazing in quali;
      VET beat Kimi to the first corner (see my comment above);
      and I did not see a DOTW when he failed to put an overtake move on VES during 30 laps or so.

      Kimi ’16 is better than Kimi ’14/’15, but not at the level of the big guys IMO.

      1. Neil Debacquer
        16th May 2016, 13:04

        lol that’s why Kimi is 2 in the drivers rn and outqualifying seb in 2 out of 5 races which is not bad if you look at his bad quali performances from the last couple of years

  16. ILuvSoundtracks (@)
    15th May 2016, 16:08

    Verstappen will definitely get higher than 80% on this poll. I consider him as a future Formula One legend.

    1. @iluvsoundtracks He’s at 79% right now, I don’t understand it either …

      1. ILuvSoundtracks (@)
        16th May 2016, 7:33

        If you don’t understand why…
        Sainz impressed with a 6th at his home GP.
        Ricciardo did his best to catch up to Vettel.
        Räikkönen was the driver some people considered to win.

        That’s why they’ve been voted, to be honest.

  17. How do you give this to anyone besides Verstappen?

    1. At the time of posting, 19% of people have voted for someone else. Weird.

      1. hipster-voting :)

    2. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
      15th May 2016, 18:22

      @n0b0dy100

      Max just crushed the start and then he just passed everyone to win!

      1. How many overtakes did Verstappen do on the track?
        (excluding lapping the back markers)

  18. Michael Brown (@)
    15th May 2016, 16:18

    Can I vote for both Mercedes drivers?

  19. Hard choice but in the end its Verstappen for me. Although he not doing anything special in the race, but this is his first race weekend in Red Bull and he perform just a bit under his teammate.

    Another contender for my DOTW is Hamilton, Ricciardo, Raikkonen, Vettel, and Sainz.
    If we look only at the race then it’s Button or Guiterrez.

    1. Did nothing special in the race apart taking the mediums for a thirty lap stint, keep a faster car behind him and win it. Nothing special.

    2. Well dude, if this is nothing special to you I wonder why you are not a f1 driver.

  20. Max for me. Honorable mention to Lewis for the Sennaesque overtake attempt on Rosberg.

    1. @Glennb
      “Sennaesque”. Surely you mean Prostethic?

      1. No he is right it came straight from the dirty Senna driving manual.

        1. More Kvyatesque for me.

  21. Verstappen.
    Yes Ricciardo outqualified him but at no point in the race did Ricciardo look like the faster driver.
    Verstappens first stint was as impressive as his last. His first race and immediately on Ricciardo’s heals, closing the gap down to under a second against a driver who was voted best of class in 2014. And the last stint, lap after lap of continued pressure from Raikkonen. He didn’t make a single mistake.

    Impressive, most impressive.

  22. This should be absolute winning for Max. even I voted for him. I feel for Ricciardo though.

  23. Verstappen.

  24. Is this even a debate? :D Max Verstappen, remember the name. Absolutely unbeliavable.

  25. @keithcollantine have you thoughtof adding a pool togethet with this one for luckiest, unluckiest and honourable mention as well? As you can see a lot of us mention other drivers in the comments…

    Just a thought

    1. Great idea.

    2. Yes great idea.

  26. To the people who voted for Hamilton/Rosberg/Alonso/Button/Ericsson/Vettel, why waste a vote?

    1. Revolution my friend…revolution.

  27. It has to be Max!
    But there are 2 men who also did a great job in the race.
    RIC, He has no luck basically, should have won the race, 4th again!
    MAS, It’s an incredible recovery, especially considering he was dead last after SC. He made a great start and gained positions but was delayed by a queue and lost plenty of positions in T3.

  28. Jan-Willem Schoormans
    15th May 2016, 17:09

    Max Verstappen, do you really need an explanation 😉

  29. I decided to vote for VES mid-race, when he was easily defending RAI. Very solid weekend for someone in a new car.
    Yes, the win was a bit lucky, but these are the stories that only F1 can write. Congratulations Max!

  30. Possibly the most slam dunk ever… Max!

  31. Woody (@woodyproducts)
    15th May 2016, 17:29

    Friday the first meters in RBR, sunday – with special thanx to HAM – winning. Under some kind of pressure from RAI. It’s bizar.

  32. Carlos Sainz has to be the most underrated driver on the grid..

    Today he absolutely trashed Kvyat convincingly. He beat him handily in qualifying, and by no less than 32 seconds in the race. Carlos was even in P3 for the opening 7 laps of the race, while Dan got lapped.

    Then you’ve got Max Verstappen. The 18 year old who never even drove the Red Bull up until this Friday, and won on his first weekend as an RBR driver, matching Ricciardo on pace throughout the GP.

    Which makes you wonder, just how good is the 2015 STR duo? I have a feeling that in 10 years from now, they will be remembered very fondly IMO.

    1. Max is now new superstar in town and Seinz is there about.

    2. I agree with you that Sainz certainly did show what he is made of this weekend too @kingshark.

      1. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
        15th May 2016, 18:19

        @kingshark yeah Sainz is amazing – he’s gotta ditch Red Bull ASAP and Daniel should too.

  33. Anthony Davidson, for spoting wrong engine mode…

    Other than that .. Max Welldonestapen. Not bad for a #2 driver. He grabed his chance and stomped a victory. First man to do it since Fangio. That is impressive.

    1. Max. Driver of the day, the week, the month and the year.

      Pretty soon Max will set a new standard in how to race in F1. No one can drive as long on a set of tires as Max.

  34. Max, easily.

    Honorable mention to Sainz, Ricciardo, Vettel and Massa, who climbed 10 places to finish in the points.

  35. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
    15th May 2016, 17:54

    Giving it to Ricciardo because he should have won that race. He’ll be leaving Red Bull very soon and I expect Nico to be racing along side Max.

    1. The Blade Runner (@)
      16th May 2016, 13:28

      Max was amazing yesterday and I think that we are probably seeing a future champion emerging before our eyes. However (puts tin-foil hat on)…

      So, Dr. Marko makes the harsh/bold/justified (delete as applicable) decision to replace Kvyat with Verstappen.

      What are the chances that during the race, and to ensure that his decision is proven to be the right one, he instructed Christian Horner et al to get Ricciardo out of Max’s way? That seems to be how Ricciardo himself sees it.

      (Takes tin-foil hat off) That’s not to take anything away from Verstappen’s performance. I was at the race yesterday and it was one of the most electric atmospheres that I can remember at a GP, especially Catalunya. Genuine delight from pretty-much everyone, Mercedes fans included.

  36. Big shout out to Vettel who is increasingly having the best outbursts!

    1. haha.. ‘What are we doing here’ seem like his favorite phrase.

  37. Max. If he started the season at Red Bull, he’d probably deserve it but in his first race part way through a season? Incredible drive.

  38. Who can choose anybody else than Verstappen. It wasn´t an easy job to hold off Raikkonen for so many laps. He is clearly the man off the day, an achievement we haven´t seen sins Senna. Good job Max!

  39. Too simplistic to vote for Max. It was clear RB wants to please MV by giving him favourable strategy and DR’s race in a way was sacrificed. Very intriguing that no journalist questioned RB what happened to DR’s strategy. He was leading the race. What was the thinking behind choosing 3 stops? Was DR consulted? These heaps of so much praise and fawning over MR is getting too sacharine and sickening

    1. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
      15th May 2016, 18:18

      I was surprised too – this is a disaster for Daniel despite being phenomenal in this race. This is exactly what happened when he joined Red Bull with Vettel and won his race, only Verstappen did it in Race One with the team’s support. If you recall Vettel was having issues as well just like Daniel’s tyres in 2 races. Daniel could end up being the next Mark Webber and Mark could have won 4 championships had Red Bull designed the car in his favor…

    2. Dear, dear Michael,
      Get a grip on yourself, all teams Ferrari and Red Bull wereconvinced the 3 stops strategy was the best option.
      So they gave Daniel and Seb the best strategy, but in the end Kimi and Max hold on to their tyres incredibly well.
      Nothing more, nothing less.
      Stop with your conspiracy theories when your favorite does not win.
      He had a puncture again, maybe Max had a hand in it or one of his engineers….
      Maybe Max’ sabotaged the car of Hamilton, so blame Max for Hamilton’s error and add a new chapter to your comspiracy bible…

  40. ColdFly F1 (@)
    15th May 2016, 18:23

    Sometimes you don’t have to beat your teammate in quali to deserve DOTW!

    Verstappen: absolutely amazing for a first weekender in the car, keeping WDC’s in faster cars behind him, and copying with all the pressure when he was leading.

  41. Voted for Max naturally, but some honourable mentions:
    – Ricciardo: produced a fantastic Q3 lap and led most of the race, if it just wasn’t for the wrong strategy…
    – Räikkönen: was faster than his teammate in quali, and in the race everyone seems to be raving how Verstappen managed to save his tyres… well, Kimi did exactly the same except he had the dirty air of the car in front and he still kept attacking lap after lap.
    – Sainz & Bottas: got the maximum out of their machinery.

  42. Astonishing to see how Max was consistently managing the distance to Kimi in order to prevent Kimi from overtaking him on the long straight. He knew exactly which margin was needed, where he was able to gain some distance and where he was loosing some.. Just unbelievable!

    This was a legendary race and from the moment Hamilton and Rosberg kissed each other I knew something special was about to happen!

    So much looking forward to Monaco!

  43. Also want to mention the classy congrats from Alonso, Vettel and Kimi to Max! Great to see their mutual respect!

    It’s a shame Sainz (who did a great job today!) is not able to do the same without immediately comparing himself to Max.

  44. Max was extra-ordinary and deserving winner..
    to mention a few more great drives today – Felipe Massa and Ricciardo

  45. Is there any point in voting on this one? I still am, for Massa! Thats right, the only driver to actually gain any real positions even after the team threw him under the bus for some bad qualifying operations.

  46. Haha, never easier, this one.

  47. He managed a set of mediums 32 laps in a car he had never driven before Friday. Uhm, yeah, he’s definitely special.

  48. It’s quite clear who’s going to win so I’ll go for another driver who deserves credit. If it weren’t for Verstappen’s history making drive I think Sainz would have gotten the plaudits for this race, that performance deserves not to be forgotten.

  49. WheeledWarrior
    15th May 2016, 21:07

    As a Dutchman, there’s only one obvious choice here: Verstappen of course.

  50. Kimi, upper hand on his teammate for the weekend, took max points from his hardware during the race.

    Verstappen’s weekend is impressive, but I feel that RBR’s drivers were on different setups and strategies and that skews the judgement on either of them, and he was soundly beaten by RIC on saturday.

  51. whoever did not vote for Max, their vote is a lie!!!

  52. Kimi drove a very intelligent race, managing the gap to the cars in front. For a while it looks as though he didn’t have their pace but then it became evident he was just running in clean air.
    For me, one sign of a great driver is one that can have a lacklustre looking race but somehow end up on the podium. He needed the win to get DOTW, because with 20 laps following Max or however many it was he should have created an opportunity. It is noteworthy however that the Ferrari/RedBull battle behind had the RedBull looking quicker than the Ferrari…

    My vote went to the only person that it could go to. However many circumstances there are, whatever excuses over strategy calls, conspiracy theories and the rest of it, Max’s win today is nothing short of incredible.

  53. Verstappen drove good, even if he hadn’t won – with all eyes on him he

    Ricciardo was right to be miffed about the strategy, but then 2 years ago in Canada, ironically his 1st win, his teammate got shafted with RBR strat which got him track position when MGP had their issues.

    A special thanks to NICO and LEWIS, pls lets have more of the same at future races. The RBR and Ferrari show was better, I actually watched this one to the end. Bernie put the chq in the mail :)

  54. I voted for Max Verstappen. I think his first time driving this car was in practice on Friday but he took to it like a duck to water and stuck it fourth on the grid ahead of the two Ferraris. In the race he was more than a match for his teammate and at the end he had Kimi Räikkönen breathing down his neck for lap after lap but he was so cool under pressure and made no mistakes to take a marvellous debut victory, the first of many i’m sure.

  55. Well yes, I voted Verstappen. How could I not?

    Honorable mentions to:
    Bottas, Sainz, Gutierrez, Ericsson.

  56. It’s got to be Max! But an honourable mention for Sainz (good start and eventual points scoring finish) and Massa (for a superb comeback from a terrible qualification).

  57. Now Kvyat can shut up about giving Red Bull their only podium.

  58. Max Verstappen is a no brainer for this Driver of the Weekend. Even if Ricciardo had been kept on the same strategy and won, a second or third for Max still would have led to me calling him DOW. He kept pace with Ricciardo all weekend in a car he is not nearly as familiar with, and then he went on to have a mistake-free race. Of course, the fact that he did win just seals the deal.

    Drive of the weekend? Possibly drive of the decade.

  59. Went for Max… 18 years old!!!

  60. For coolness under continuous pressure, for superb driving skills (managing a set of tyres to go 31 laps, no less), for maintaining dominance in the last 10 laps, for switching cars in the last 10 days….it has to be, happily, Max. That he happens to be 18 is coincidental, a beautiful inspiring coincidence.

  61. No mistake about it: first win at first race with Red Bull and yougest F1 winner?!…

    Max got it all.

  62. Max for me but with a shout out to Kimi who did well and didnt do anything stupid. also to Ricardo, his big smile was slipping a little im sure hes seen this as Mercs coming together for their once a year meeting, unlikely to happen again.

  63. I had to go with Carlos Sainz Jr, even though his race result wasn’t as good as his ex-teammate’s, it was still his best ever result. Plus he made a real go of it in practice, outpacing the Red Bulls and showing everyone he shouldn’t be forgotten, as he completely destroyed Mr Kvyat all weekend.
    Would have gone for Max otherwise!

  64. Can’t argue with Max being driver of the day, even if all he did was effectively hold position. I don’t think anyone expected the 2 stop strategy to work, hence why Vestappen and Raikkonen were on it while their ‘top’ team mates went for the seemingly better three stop strategy.

    Numpty award goes to Rosberg, seeing as he was in the wrong engine mode and kept on moving across on another car. You can argue all you like about ‘Hamilton being aggressive’ when he was only doing what any other driver would do, but it was Rosberg that started the situation and saw it through to it’s conclusion.

    1. Nico did nothing wrong to cause the crash. As the leader he was within his rights to cut across the track to defend during his one move, at any rate he so chose. There’s nothing to say LH wouldn’t have done the same thing. There are reasons why this was deemed a racing incident. Engine mode issue or not, Nico’s move was legal.

  65. My first, gut reaction was Max. However, I always try to think these through the day after the race, and it’s not so cut and dried.

    No driver did a perfect job. I discount HAM & ROS immediately, but this still leaves a fair few. It came down to the top 4 quite quickly to me because, while others did a good job, the fight at the front was phenomenal, and all 4 drivers did a great job.

    In the end, I went with my heart and gave it to Verstappen. He had a lot of good luck, but ultimately put in a great performance all weekend, way better than you would expect from someone jumping in a new car for the first time. But Ricciardo, Vettel and Raikonnen all did a phenomenal job, too, and I wish I could cast 4 votes.

  66. Max Verstappen, won unexpectedly, more to come, rest is history. Take a bow, no arguements please only if you’re stupid.

  67. Max of course. Friday in a new car in a new team, winner on sunday keeping two world champions behind him.

    But I feel for Carlos Sainz, this was probably his best race and hardly anybody noticed…

  68. Verstappen seems the obvious choice. But I wanted to acknowledge Sainz being fantastic. Voted Sainz Jr.

  69. Just registered to vote for Max. Sainz was great too!

  70. Let’s give it to him; credit where it’s due. Verstappen, Sainz, Ricciardo are the only ones I considered worthy this weekend, and in that order.

  71. An easy one. Who was the “Spanish” GP driver of the weekend?
    Well it could only be Sainz or Alonso. And Alonso did not have a good day. No brainer ^_^

  72. Great race from Verstappen and Raikkonen, but I have to give it to Ricciardo. He out qualified Max and his race pace was slightly better. Granted, Max has very little mileage with the chassis and power unit. Max and Kimi had by far the better strategy. Really, it wasn’t even close. Frankly I’m surprised that Red Bull and Ferrari got their strategies that wrong. Daniel and Seb could easily have been on the top two steps. Don’t get me wrong, Max and Kimi maximised the two stop, and did a fantastic job at tire management. And again, we see Red Bull set their car up for one sector specifically, to great effect. They’ve done that so many times over the years. I would expect Max to be right up to speed with Daniel in another race or two. Fantastic race! Really enjoyed that.

  73. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
    17th May 2016, 11:58

    A different, broader take on the same question. You won’t be amazed by my choice, but check it out: https://opinionatedmotorsportfan.com/2016/05/17/driver-of-the-week-max-verstappen/

  74. Like most others my driver of the weekend is Verstappen.

    After the swap with Kvyat most of the focus and pressure leading up to the race was on Verstappen, yet it didn’t seem to affect him in the slightest.

    Regarding the change I thought it was harsh on Kvyat and that changing so early in the season was strange but obviously Red Bull thought that Verstappen was the better long term option, which I would have thought most would have agreed with even before this race, and if they didn’t promote Verstappen soon they risked losing him when is contract end at the end of next year.

    I thought it would probably take at least a few races for Verstappen to get comfortable with the Red Bull car and team after the change until he could seriously challenge Riccarido so I was surprised just how strong he was in qualifying.

    With all the changes at the Red Bull teams it seemed like Sainz had almost been forgotten about but he put in a great performance in his home Grand Prix getting the best out of his car.

    Ricciardo achieved best of the rest behind the Mercedes in qualifying and if it wasn’t for Red Bull splitting their strategies to cover Ferrari he would have been the one to take the race victory.

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