Vote for your 2016 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix Driver of the Weekend

2016 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

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

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

Driver performance summary

Driver Started Gap to team mate (Q) Laps leading team mate Pitted Finished Gap to team mate (R)
Lewis Hamilton 1st -0.303s 52/55 2 1st -0.439s
Nico Rosberg 2nd +0.303s 3/55 2 2nd +0.439s
Sebastian Vettel 5th +0.057s 28/55 2 3rd -17.973s
Kimi Raikkonen 4th -0.057s 27/55 2 6th +17.973s
Felipe Massa 10th -0.226s 4/6 2 9th
Valtteri Bottas 11th +0.226s 2/6 0
Daniel Ricciardo 3rd -0.229s 12/55 2 5th +3.63s
Daniil Kvyat 17th -0.39s 14/14 1
Nico Hulkenberg 7th -0.018s 52/55 2 7th -8.662s
Sergio Perez 8th +0.018s 3/55 2 8th +8.662s
Kevin Magnussen 18th +0.367s 0/5 1
Jolyon Palmer 15th -0.367s 5/5 3 17th
Max Verstappen 6th +0.229s 43/55 1 4th -3.63s
Carlos Sainz Jnr 21st +0.39s 0/14 2
Marcus Ericsson 22nd +0.39s 48/54 1 15th -5.37s
Felipe Nasr 19th -0.39s 6/54 2 16th +5.37s
Fernando Alonso 9th -0.228s 8/12 2 10th
Jenson Button 12th +0.228s 4/12 0
Pascal Wehrlein 16th -0.4s 14/54 2 14th +6.305s
Esteban Ocon 20th +0.4s 40/54 2 13th -6.305s
Romain Grosjean 14th +0.084s 43/55 2 11th -18.336s
Esteban Gutierrez 13th -0.084s 12/55 2 12th +18.336s

    Vote for your driver of the weekend

    Which driver do you think did the best job throughout the race weekend?

    Who got the most out of their car in qualifying and the race? Who put their team mate in the shade?

    Cast your vote below and explain why you chose the driver you picked in the comments.

    Who was the best driver of the 2016 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix weekend?

    • No opinion (0%)
    • Esteban Gutierrez (0%)
    • Romain Grosjean (0%)
    • Esteban Ocon (1%)
    • Pascal Wehrlein (0%)
    • Jenson Button (0%)
    • Fernando Alonso (1%)
    • Felipe Nasr (0%)
    • Marcus Ericsson (0%)
    • Carlos Sainz Jnr (0%)
    • Daniil Kvyat (0%)
    • Jolyon Palmer (0%)
    • Kevin Magnussen (0%)
    • Sergio Perez (0%)
    • Nico Hulkenberg (3%)
    • Max Verstappen (7%)
    • Daniel Ricciardo (0%)
    • Valtteri Bottas (0%)
    • Felipe Massa (1%)
    • Kimi Raikkonen (0%)
    • Sebastian Vettel (30%)
    • Nico Rosberg (27%)
    • Lewis Hamilton (27%)

    Total Voters: 404

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    Author information

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

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    137 comments on “Vote for your 2016 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix Driver of the Weekend”

    1. Lewis was better, no doubt.
      But under the circumstances, pressure before and during the race, and that moment of passing Max Verstappen (which ended up being crucial) wheel-to-wheel with so much at stake, I will give it to the new WDC.
      That pass for me was the moment of the race, because of how much he had to lose.

      1. That pass for me was the moment of the race, because of how much he had to lose.

        That pass was extremely cool – given the circumstances, and given whom Rosberg was overtaking! I agree that it was the move that sealed his championship, in hindsight.

        1. Crucial yes but not really that exciting as it was a fore-gone conclusion and Max knew it. Mind you, Nico took his time over actually doing it.

          1. @wildfire15
            He did it wihin a lap after getting the get-go from his team.

      2. Rosberg was better, no doubt. He won the championship, did what he needed to do, and did so while being a team player who puts the team’s interests ahead of his own — hell, he’s even followed team orders this year, and likely would already have won had he not done so. Hamilton showed himself once again to be a selfish little weasel who will put his own interests above the team, every single time. A truly exemplary drive from Nico, and a disgusting drive from the ex-world champion.

        1. Hahaha, Rosberg fans are so funny – even when they win they stick their lip out.

        2. Yep, I agree. He is the bigger man, and has shown maturity and sportmanship.

        3. How did he put his own interest over the team? The team already won their title. This was all HAM could try. Its ridicoulos to blame him, this is what sport at toplevel is all about.

          1. Because the only thing he was achieving with his slowing down, was to risk Mercedes getting a 1-2, because even if Vettel had passed Rosberg, it would still not have been enough for Hamilton to win the title. And Vettel could well have been able to pass Hamilton too Jim.

            1. @bascb

              I disagree with your assessment.

              There was no reason for Hamilton to try to secure a 1-2 for the team. The team had already won the WCC, and adding more points actually increases their costs for next year. This is even ignoring the fact that a 1-2 guaranteed Nico’s victory and lost it for Hamilton, which is definitely not something he would work for (and nor would anyone with a shot at the WDC). Either way, the team won the WCC, and one of their drivers would be WDC, so there was no incentive whatsoever.

              There was a chance that, had Vettel passed Rosberg, that he would have passed Hamilton, but I consider that unlikely. Hamilton could have picked up the pace, probably by enough to keep him at bay. However, there was 100% chance that if Rosberg finished 2nd he would win the WDC, so what did he have to lose?

              Also, the best result for Hamilton at that point was for the situation to put enough pressure on Rosberg for him to make a mistake. With how close everyone was at the end, just a small mistake by Rosberg could easily have dropped him to 4th, 5th, or even lower.

              I do not believe that any top driver in Hamilton’s situation would have done any different.

            2. Well, maybe there wasn’t @drmouse, if we ignore that his employer wished to achieve that result. And that they seemed to have agreed upon so much prior to the race.

              We do not know what kind of bonusses or whatever role 1-2s play in how the Mercedes board values the work with or without another 1-2. But we do know that the team clearly expressed that as their target. And therefore it WAS a reason to try to get that result.

              But back to the race. Even if Hamilton had succeeded in pushing Rosberg in the arms of Vettel and Vettel had passed him, that still would not have solved the issue. Because Rosberg finishing 3rd would still win the WDC. Vettel by then would be on Hamilton, so it might not have been as easy to keep ahead while also driving as slow as he would want to push it even further and get Max to take another spot from Rosberg.
              But by then Max’ tyres were quite old and Rosberg would have been faster relatively, so it would have been quite an ask to see that pass happen while at the same time it gave the risk of dropping the mercedes guys to 4th and 2nd respectively (which would again not have given Hamilton the WDC)

              That is why I feel that what Hamilton did in the race ultimately was not much more than making a point. A point he would also have made by going fast and just win the race by a large margin.

              The funny thing is, that by putting immense pressure on Rosberg, he rather help show that his teammate indeed won deservedly.

        4. There is no point in your message.
          This is driver of the week-end, not driver of the year.
          Furthermore, this is the end of the season, everybody is saying nice things to each other to finish the year on a good note. But you just can’t resist to spit to a racer’s face that you don’t like. When your driver on the contrary had good words. My goodness, fans these days…

          1. New to F1 but Rosberb has done well in Hamiltons shadow. Hamilton will now win again and again. Meaning Rosberb will be a German car manufacturer champion a many time carting runner up to Lewis and will have ny havevanother F1 championship. Lewis will win all next year

      3. Yes, Nico’s pass on Verstappen probably meant more than any other pass this year. It was brave and fair, and the stakes were very high. It was the highlight of the race for me.

      4. @magon4 Completely agree. Lewis was the best driver of the weekend, but the way Rosberg handled the pressure all week, not just on the track, was supreme. He was absolutely wasted later on, which only helped to show the enormity of the task he was comfronted with and one he claimed to himself.

    2. For me, given its for the entire weekend, I’d give it to Hamilton – was perfect on Friday, Saturday and today. In the race, he did everything legally possible to help his cause too.

      Looking just at the race, Rosberg, Vettel and Verstappen also drove stellar drives.

      1. That was my vote, too.

        Congratulations to Nico on his title, but today we saw an absolute master class of skill, control, patience and tactics from Hamilton. I do not believe there are many drivers who could have controlled the pace with that degree of accuracy, lap after lap. I know that many will disagree with me, but I found the race absolutely awesome to behold.

        1. I fully agree, that was very skillful driving from Hamilton. Did you notice how he backed up Rosberg in the final part of the lap and each and every lap (except for the last one) he got to just over 1.0 seconds by the DRS zones. That’s no mean feat to achieve.

    3. Lewis Hamilton.

    4. Verstappen for the brilliant recovery from last to fourth ahead of his teammate. Qualifying was tough but he did look to have the advantage of Ricciardo until Q3.

      Special mentions go to Vettel, Hamilton, Alonso and our new world champion Rosberg

      1. Ben Rowe (@thegianthogweed)
        27th November 2016, 18:46

        It does confuse me that drivers get better ratings because they made a mistake and recovery from it. That was a clumsy mistake by Verstappen. The Force India left plenty of room yet he still hit him and spun. Verstappen did do a great job at climbing back up but his strategy did help hugely and just think how much higher up he will have been if it wasn’t for that mistake. I couldn’t even consider him as driver of the weekend because of that. He was also 6th in qualifying in what was pretty much the 2nd best car. If Riccardo was on the same strategy in the race, he will very likely have finished well ahead of Verstappen as he was faultless the whole race.

        1. Agreed. With that strategy and without that mistake – especially with Lewis’s tactic, Max coukd have been a genuine threat for the win today.

          1. @eurobrun
            But that’s the thing. Because of that mistake, they put him on that strategy. And on top of that, Ham was never going to lose the race anyway imo.

      2. Duncan Idaho (@)
        27th November 2016, 21:20

        Beaten in quali and spun on lap 1 ?
        Glacial pace set by HAM allowed him to stretch his tyres and catch up.

        1. Ricciardo should definitly sorry. For the second race in a row, Max seems completly beaten, but ends up in front of him. How can that happen?

          People say RIC is one of the best, but really… If your junior teammate is p22 and your p3, he can never finish in front of you.

          1. It´s simple, Ricciardo is awful under preassure.

            1. One thing is simple.

          2. Circumstances Jim, circumstances. That’s why statistics don’t mean anything without (the right) context.

    5. Vettel.
      Hamilton was busy to find every possible ways to drive as slowly as possible.

      1. Nico is world champion now 👍 And was way the better driver

        1. How do you that figure? ;)

      2. I agree. Vettel kept his cool after watching Kimi get jumped by the red bulls. Adapted his strategy and fought back up to the podium. Hamilton was great at driving slowly, Rosberg was good at staying clean, vettel was racing.

        1. I also voted for Vettel, for the reasons given above. He showed talent and class, as he fought hard and did not interfere with the championship at the last second. He really needed that podium, and he got it.

    6. Today there wasn’t jus one driver of the day!
      – Hamilton, for doing everything he could do to become WDC.
      – Robert for becoming WDC.
      – Vettel for his strategy.

      But for me is was Verstappen, for getting from last to 4th. Just skipping a whole pitstop, amazing!

      1. @omit Good ol’ Robert, the WDC

        1. Whaha, spell checker! Rosberg of course!

      2. But it was Verstappens mistake that landing him in last. Hardly driver of the day stuff. Although it was fun to watch, he really only went from 6th to 4th.

        1. Lewis was voted driver of the day in Spa after going from 21 to 3 and not even making an effort qualifying. Also massively helped by crash between VES, RAI and VET. Max recovering from dead last and almost holding on to 3 is being rated as an almost average performance by most. Yes, he was helped by a one-stop strategy but also HAM was massively helped by red flag in Spa. Not arguing to make VES driver of the day but interesting to see how quick people get used to Max pulling this off and label as average performance

    7. I voted Alonso, put himself in Q3 and ended in the points.

    8. Seb, thanks for making this at least a little worth watching

    9. It’s Verstappen, even though he was the cause of his own problems. He could have won today, that’s no hyperbole.
      Vettel was excellent too.

      1. Verstappen for me to. But he never could have won the race. Hamilton had it all in his hands, if Verstappen (or anyone else) became between him and Ros, he (Ham) would just drive away.

        1. You do realize that Verstappen only was 4th because he his one stop strategy was the correct one and because Hamilton was backing everyone up (he was going as slow as the Force Indias) allowed Verstappen to get back into it (not to take anything away from Verstappen making his way through the field). Had it been a normal race and Hamilton and co. been racing at normal speeds, Verstappen would have been way further behind than he was.

        2. Exactly. Off course Max never couldve won.

      2. You realize this is driver of the weekend and not driver of the race?

        1. And the race is where the points are handed out. Or do you take FP into account too?

          1. Yes, I take FP into account because it is driver of the weekend.

    10. Vettel, no doubt. Special mentions go to the champion Rosberg, Hamilton, Hulkemberg and Perez.

      1. No doubt? I have some.

      2. Verstappen from last to 4°!!! at Dubai!!! Astonishing!!! Only a great driver can do that!!!

        1. The stewards didn’t really care about track limits today but VES drove in Dubai today he should get a 5 s penalty!

          1. Ah ah ah, nice one!

          2. Brilliant, love it! @Zomtec

          3. Pearl pearl pearl! Get some new glasses mate!

        2. Vettel did it in 2012. Verstappen was very lucky yesterday, his race was nothing special.

    11. Rosberg and Vettel.

    12. While Vettel’s and Vestappen’s come backs were good and added to the tension, Hamilton did literally everything he had to all weekend to win the battle, even if he couldn’t win the war.

    13. LH44 without a doubt, though I am biased. He couldn’t have done any more this weekend. Hang on, didn’t Rosberg stall his car on track while doing doughnuts on the pit straight? Failure to bring his car home & abandoning it on track must be worth a 10 second time penalty? 5 seconds? (sour grapes)

      Still, Lewis gets a consolation prize – back to the hotel with Rita Ora…

    14. 15% voted for max so far. You do realise that he spun and nearly took out Hulk.

      1. Ben Rowe (@thegianthogweed)
        27th November 2016, 18:56

        Yep, agree that is rather strange. A poor lap in qualifying resulting in 6th. Then contact with Hulkenberg even though he left him plenty of room, he still spun himself. Then, I’ll admit it was an impressive drive from then on but if Ricciardo was on the same strategy, he will have very likely beaten him by quite a long way as Ricciardo was faultless all the way though. The strategy just didn’t work as well for him.

        Too many people seem to think that drivers have had a better drive even if it’s their own fault that they spin out and then recover from it. It would simply be MUCH better if they didn’t spin out at all! That is why I can’t even consider Verstappen as driver of the weekend. He was in one of the best cars on the grid so it won’t have been that hard to climb back up either as there were a lot of retirements and about half of the drivers ahead of him pitted and obviously he went past them very easily.

        1. “Ricciardo was faultless all the way through”…guess he was unable to manage his tyres as well as VES. He had a massive flat spot on the 1st stint. At the end VES finished well ahead of Ricciardo (+3,63s) who was on fresher tyres.

          Max simply has the upper hand now…where VES corrects his mistakes by racing, Ricciardo seems to always have an excuse!

          1. Ben Rowe (@thegianthogweed)
            27th November 2016, 20:18

            Yes, but that flat spot didn’t send him to the back. Verstappen only just stopped himself from crashing and nearly took out another car. These things happen too often with Verstappen. Ricciardo pretty much never has these moments at any races. I still don’t really get how anyone can say his race was better than Ricciardo’s. I’ve heard from others that apparently Red Bull may well have favored Verstappen with this strategy as it would make it more likely that he would secure 4th in the drivers championship.

            If you think about it again. Just how much better could Verstappen have done if he didn’t make his mistake? A lot better. So he clearly didn’t do the best he could have done and plenty of other drivers did a lot better if you include qualifying as well. Vettel qualified ahead of Verstappen and also beat him in the race. He didn’t make any mistakes in the race either. IMO, he was quite easlily better than Verstappen this weekend. You should also take into account that as it is over the weekend we are basing this on Ricciardo qualified well ahead of Verstappen in qualifying and didn’t make any messy mistakes in the race. I think that makes them even at leased this race weekend. But Vettel did better than both overall.

            1. @thegianthogweed
              Your comment makes perfect sense. But you have to realize before you engage in these discussions with the dutch sect, that they will never accept anything less than you acknowledging MVer’s supremacy over Ric, the rest of the grid, and indeed all the drivers before and after him (unless it will be another dutch driver ofcourse). They don’t respond to reasoning. Claims that he would have the upper hand now over Ric (funny thing that they were already saying that after Spain, the first race together, then went into a slumber because of the frequent not so favorable comparison with Ric and suddenly all woke up after Brazil), that he could have won this race, even an easy-verifiable statement that he was coming back from last, it’s all made up and refuted childish easily. They also like to cherry pick their arguments, e.g. whenever Ric beats Mver in quali but ends up behind MVer in the race (note my choice of words here: “ends up”, not “gets beaten”, because they will use it either way), they will be saying “it’s the race where points are dealt” or something likewise. But when MVer beats Ric in quali, they will be going like “Max dominated Ric alle weekend long” (in case MVer ends up in front of Ric in the race) or “Max was faster than Ric, but got unlucky in the race” (in case their hero ends up behind Ric). And you won’t be hearing them say, in the latter case, “it’s the race that counts”. Heck, they even point out that MVer was faster in q2 even though it’s q3 in quali “that counts” :-). And can’t say I see them bringing up the end classification, you know, that thingy that “counts”.

            2. And no doubt you’re the kind of person that couldn’t keep his mouth shut after Monaco, screaming at the top of your lungs how unjustified Max’ promotion was and how poor a driver he was only to be completely silent again after Canada, Austria and Silverstone.
              You must have been seriously sweating when Max outqualified Daniel at Spa. Luckily for you that weekend fell right into Daniel’s lap.
              But then, Brazil. Everyone and their grandmother comparing Max to Senna… Oh the horror.

              At least you can still comfort yourself with the fact that Daniel barely outscored and outqualified someone who came into the team after 4 races.

              Imo you’re a lot worse than the blind fanboys that justify everything Verstappen does.

    15. Hamilton for winning at the slowest possible speed a la Fangio ;-)

      1. Duncan Idaho (@)
        27th November 2016, 21:26

        Losing at the slowest speed possible?

        1. We are talking about the race here, mate. ;)

    16. Not sure why everyone is voting Vettel. Messed up his quali and benefitted from strategy and Hamilton’s tactics to even get near the front runners. Meanwhile Hamilton leads every session, takes pole, and wins the race.

      1. Not every session

        1. Yes you are right, forgot about the last session.

      2. @pastaman I voted Vettel because despite not doing brilliant in qualifying, he took full advantage of the situation presented to claim third. He didn’t make any mistakes like Verstappen, Ricciardo and Kimi weren’t particularly fast for the most part, Rosberg’s drive wasn’t excellent. It was very good, enough to win the championship so in that sense it was great, but as a drive in itself across the weekend he got beaten by Hamilton, and I didn’t want to give it to Hamilton, because as difficult as it was for him, and as well as he did drive, it wasn’t as good as Vettel in my opinion.

        That said, all three podium finishers are worthy of it, and I think the poll results are showing that.

        1. Agree with your assessment. All these people voting Verstappen are out to lunch.

    17. There weren’t really many standout performances. Alonso probably had as much advantage over his teammate as anyone, but Button has been off the boil lately. Other than that a lot of the qualifying positions were reversed in the race, Verstappen did a great recovery drive but he was at least partially to blame for the collision, and was in that position because of his poor qualifying. Likewise Vettel’s finishing position flatters him on a weekend where he’s generally been in Raikkonen’s shadow.

      So for me DotW has to go to Hamilton. Pole position and won as slowly as he could, without ever looking in danger of losing his position.

    18. I’m going for Hamilton, he completed dominated the weekend.

    19. Verstappen! Not many can come back so easily…and for beating his teammate. He’s got the upper hand on Ricciardo!

      1. Ben Rowe (@thegianthogweed)
        27th November 2016, 19:07

        His 1 stop strategy helped a lot. If Ricciardo was on that same one, he will very likely have finished well ahead as Verstappem made a mistake and spun at the start. Ricciardo also qualified 3rd unlike Verstapppen who was right down behind the Ferrari’s in 6th. Ricciardo was faultless all the race and as I said, if he had had a one stop, as Verstappen fell to the back at the start, it will have been very unlikely that he will have been beaten.

        He came back so easily and fast mainly because about half the drivers ahead of him had gone to pit so that wasn’t that impressive as the overtakes were very simple. He was also helped by the fact that there were several retirements. The Red Bull is also clearly one of the best cars on the grid so it isn’t hard to overtake the slower cars. After his spin, Yes, he did have a very solid race and recovered from it well. But considering he had a poor qualifying and a spin that was his own fault on the first lap as well as having his team mate on a worse strategy, I couldn’t say he’s had the upper hand on Ricciardo at all this weekend. There is no way I could consider him driver of the weekend.

        1. Who says Ricciardo would have been able to make that strategy work?

          1. Ben Rowe (@thegianthogweed)
            27th November 2016, 20:03

            If it worked for Verstappen, I’m sure Ricciardo could have managed it. As he will have been on tyres with less wear than Verstappens on the first stint as he didn’t spin.

        2. “Ricciardo was faultless all the way through”…guess he was unable to manage his tyres as well as VES. He had a massive flat spot on the 1st stint. At the end VES finished well ahead of Ricciardo (+3,63s) who was on fresher tyres.

          Max simply has the upper hand now…where VES corrects his mistakes by racing, Ricciardo seems to always have an excuse!

    20. Well…. A bit torn between… LH, for doing everything possible, but driving as slow as possible race… 9 seconds of pole position… He was good, good practices, good pole, good win… But really, not one wheel to wheel battle, no spectacular laps, nothing I could vote for…

      Nico Rosberg for showing awesome standing under pressure, awesome move on Verstappen… Defending against all, and doing all where a single mistake would loose him the championship…

      Or Vettel, for driving as fast as possible… Vettel it is then.

      1. no spectacular laps

        Not even that pole lap @jureo?

        1. I mean in the race…

    21. Seriously, not Max. His charge from last was entertaining (the race was so boring until the few last laps, so it was appreciated) but he was last because he barged into Hulk. What irks me is his complaining about Hulk not leaving enough space, he had plenty but went wide.

      And now he would never have won, Lewis had plenty of pace left unused. By the time he was nearing the podium there was little left of his tyres. 4P was not bad for a 1-stop strategy, though.

      Not Lewis. Ok, it was legit and well executed but obnoxiously unsportsmanlike in my book. I had a laugh with Vettel’s quip about the tow. Well deserved, pure poetic justice.

      I’d give it to Nico Rosberg, he did what he had to do -including passing Max- under tremendous pressure. And don’t mention he didn’t try to pass Lewis. Lewis had the pace to make it extremely difficult, getting away just enough to deny Nico the DRS and then backing up where passing him was well nigh impossible.

      Vettel wasn’t bad but didn’t deliver when it counted. Dan was almost invisible. Kimi was doing pretty good but was undone by Ferrari’s strategy again. And Alonso did one of his usual little brilliant unsung drives in the midfield for the last point. Totally destroyed Button this year, and Kimi the year before last. Who else has done that to several WDC teammates? Not counting Felipe who should have been 2008 WDC, talk about undeserved ones.

      1. I actually think that Vettel delivered: He got on the podium and didn’t interfere with the championship race that he had no part of. He showed some sportsmanship here, a more mature drive than some other champions when it came down to it.

    22. Hamilton – Beat Rosberg in all 3 practices (I think), in qualy and won the race, but backing up like that annoyed me as a racer myself, I’d have rather gone all out to try and beat my team mate by about 20 seconds to prove how much better I am in that situation, knowing how trains can form round Abu Dhabi (looking at no one in particular *coughPetrovcough*) although it probably made the race more enjoyable. But for doing that an potentially putting the win for the team at risk with Vettel coming through on super softs, nah.
      Rosberg – Made a great pass on Verstappen which all of the people who say he’s crap at wheel to wheel racing need to see, but was outperformed, though he did what was needed and sealed the WDC
      Vettel – outqualified by his team mate, but did a good strategy in the race to get a podium. But the DOTW shouldn’t be outqualified by his team mate.
      Verstappen – Like Vettel, outqualified, and made a poor start then hit into Hulkenberg. Did well from then on, but still.

      So I’m going to be a bit biased and vote for my second favourite driver (who will be my favourite next year with Button retiring) – Hulkenberg. Only had 1 full practice session, due to Celis and a fuel pressure issue, and still outqualified his team mate, who is usually better round Abu Dhabi. In the race, he was hit by Verstappen in Turn 1 (another first lap incident for him that isn’t his fault), getting floor damage, and then a good little battle with Perez on the first few laps before getting ahead, pulling away a bit, and keeping the margin comfortably, even with the damage to his floor. He’s really been on it in recent races, could’ve had a podium in Brazil without his puncture, best of the rest by far in Mexico, and qualified well in USA before being taken out.

    23. Lewis Hamilton did a good job but I really didn’t like him backing up Nico Roseberg. It was, in my view, a bit dirty and should be banned.

      1. I think they should all take turns leading, drive very cautiously and then everyone should get equal points at the end.

      2. I don’t know about it being banned, but I have a problem when it is among teammates. If Hamilton was slowing down another team to help himself or teammate, I would say sure. But when you are disrespecting your team like Hamilton did today, it makes the whole Mercedes operation look like a bunch of idiots.

        1. The Mercedes team made themselves look like idiots by ordering Hamilton to do something he was never going to do.

          He is a top driver, a multiple WDC, and he wants to win. Not just races, but championships. He still had a shot at the championship, and his only option in trying to get it was to do as he did. He had no incentive whatsoever to do any differently: The team already had the WCC, and one of their drivers would be the WDC regardless. He could settle for second place, something no top competitor in any sport will do while they have a chance at 1st, or he could do as he did.

          I doubt any top driver in his shoes would have done differently, and I don’t believe they should.

      3. “It was, in my view, a bit dirty and should be banned.”

        I’m getting fed up of everyone calling for tactical racing to be banned. They never use those words, but that’s what it amounts to.

        F1 is not, has never been, and should never be, purely about driving flat out flag-to-flag. LH showed a cool head, brains, and immense skill in the race.

        Even so, how could it be banned? How would one judge whether someone was driving slowly to hold someone up? Should drivers get a blue flag even when racing for position?

        Nico always had the opportunity to try to overtake (which he never did). He could have saved up all his battery, as Hamilton was, and used that to attack and get within a second at the detection point. He didn’t, choosing the safe option of staying behind while being pushed closer and closer back to the others.

        1. “Immense skill”, don’t make me laugh.
          Seven or so laps, over ten long minutes, racking up pressure on Rosberg but never making him fail. Seb never had a clear shot on him. Better yet, Seb claims he couldn’t pass Nico because Lewis was always giving him a tow. Such skill!
          Want to see how it’s done? Watch Alonso after T4 in Brazil 2007. The surgical precision of a sucker punch that sent Lewis to the pasture with a serious case of the locks. Without touching him of course.
          If you are going to play dirty at least learn to do it right. Poor little Lewis didn’t have a clue.
          Would have served him right learning to do his starts earlier in the season, btw.

          1. “Seven or so laps, over ten long minutes, racking up pressure on Rosberg but never making him fail. Seb never had a clear shot on him.”

            I am pretty certain it was much more than 7 laps. Looking at the lap charts, it was over 15 laps, probably more like 20. Over this period, until very near the end, he consistently kept Nico between 1 and 1.2 seconds behind him at the detection points.

            Had Lewis wanted to “play dirty”, he could have. He didn’t, instead choosing the only legal and ethical option available to him.

            Yes, Rosberg also showed skill. He was under immense pressure and did not fail. But, if you deny the skill showed by Hamilton, you are either blinded by hatred of Hamilton, or just blind.

          2. @Hyoko
            “Watch Alonso after T4 in Brazil 2007”

            so a rookie f1 driver almost won the WDC and was upsatged in a corner in the last race by a 2x WDC with a history and passion of domineering his team?


      4. @ayrtonsenna26

        Should be banned?
        No that’s just silly. Not only would it be impossible to enforce but it’s also something that will make f1 less exciting. And we’ve already got plenty of rules that make f1 less exciting
        DRS, gumdrop tyres, the new Verstappen rule.
        Without Hamilton’s tactic the race would have been a snooze fest.

    24. At the end of the weekend there was only one driver who did what he had to do under enormous pressure and he conquered his bully after so many years. So no doubt for me that Rosberg was the driver of the weekend. Yes Hamilton was fastest in qualifying and race, but he couldn’t win a championship, Rosberg was the only one who could loose it, and he didn’t.
      And of course well done for Vettel and Max that different strategy and the excitement in the second half of the race. Would have been interesting to see where Max would have ended without that incident in the first corner. But this gave him the chance to do what he likes to do so much: overtake other cars. For sure he has the most overtakings this year and he was exciting to watch again. Can’t wait until it’s March 2017!

    25. Rosberg.
      1. He passed Ves when mattered with great move.
      2.Hold on under pressure till the end.
      3.Won WDC

      How can people vote Max is beyond even Vulcan logic especially after first lap spin.

      1. Ben Rowe (@thegianthogweed)
        27th November 2016, 22:45

        I agree about Max. Yes he did do a great race after spin. That is what people seem to be saying he did such a good job at. However, it would have been far better if he didn’t have that near crash spin at all! I couldn’t even consider him driver of the day, let alone driver of the weekend when I compare him to others. He also had a poor qualifying which does count as part of the weekend.

    26. Verstappen gave an impressive recovery, but unlike Brazil it was sort of his fault. Vettel grabbed a good result, but where was he in qualifying?

      Hamilton was the driver of this weekend.

    27. This is a bit of a sentimental vote, but I wanted to give this one to Felipe Massa, as I will never get the chance to do so again. However he maxed out what the Williams could do in the race and beat Bottas in qualifying with a great lap, so I think that just about justifies my vote.

      1. Ben Rowe (@thegianthogweed)
        27th November 2016, 23:02

        What surprised me a bit though was that both Massa’s and Alonso’s time in Q3 was slower than Bottas’s in Q2. Massa’s lap was entertaining but I wouldn’t say that he beat Bottas with a great lap as it was actually over a 10th slower and looked a little messy too. I feel that Bottas will have beaten Massa in the race though as he very soon got past Massa and started pulling ahead before he had to retire.
        But yes, I have to say that was a great race by Massa. The Williams really isn’t that good any more and he did pretty much get the most out of it. I thought he’d actually struggle getting past Alonso but he managed to finish ahead in the end.

    28. Got to be Rosberg just for handling the immense pressure, holding it together and winning a deserved first title. As much as Lewis lost out on this championship because of reliability, he lost it down to his own poor performances in Baku, Singapore and Japan.

      1. Great comment, many fans seem to forget that the key to winning such a long championship is consistency.

    29. ColdFly F1 (@)
      27th November 2016, 21:48

      quick vote, no brainer this week, quick vote for Hamilton.
      Surprised to see how many still voted for one of the other guys for DOTW.

      But still great recovery by VES, great 15-20 lap sprint by VET, and well managed by ROS to bring the title home when being ‘attacked from ahead’ and from behind..

    30. Let me remind you people that the race goes past the first 6 drivers

      Voted Massa, I was between him and Hulk, and probably Hulk deserves it more, but hell Felipe baby last race.

      Ham drove unnecessary slowly
      Rosberg didn’t beat his teammate
      Vettel had a scrappy qualy
      Max had a bad qualy
      Ric didn’t finish ahead of his teammate despite starting from 3rd
      Kimi same thing as Ric

      1. Well, Hamilton had to slow down if he really wanted that title. He did all he could legally and cleanly. He was flawless the whole week-end. You are being harsh here @johnmilk.

        1. I am not being harsh at all @x303

          The goal of this vote is to choose the DOTW, it has to be objective, regardless of what is happening in the championship. For me the DOTW has to perform in qualifying (and have decent FPs) and during the race, by achieving the maximum possible with the provided machinery.

          Hamilton did not do that. However Massa, out-qualified his teammate, and in the race snatched 9th from Alonso. Hulkenberg was the best of the rest basically, great qualy, great race. Both of them were flawless and pushed their machine to the maximum. Hamilton was flawless, yes, but didn’t push it, so there is no way for me to know if he would be as clean if he was pushing.

          I think I am being more than fair.

          Kimi and Ric for example were a bit screwed by their teams tactics. RedBull were short-sighted and only tried to get Kimi, and Ferrari panicked and pitted Kimi too soon, until that point they were driving very well, but it faded away in the last stint

          The title fight shouldn’t matter for the vote.

          1. I see your point and fully respect it.
            I could be argued that Hamilton won at the slowest possible speed.

            1. They all win at the slowest possible speed.

    31. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
      27th November 2016, 23:51

      Ok, Lewis backed the pace up a full minute and Nico still couldn’t pass him – Vettel couldn’t pass Nico with a full minute backup:-) Max couldn’t do it either. I’m pretty sure that instead of DotW we should be reviewing Daniel, Max, Kimi, and Seb to see if they deserve their spots as F1 drivers because they might possess more skills in the burger-flipping deparment and how cool would it be to go to your local fast food place and have Seb Vettel take your order!!!

      If these are the best drivers in the world, who are the worst ? With 2 minutes, half the people on this forum could have won…

      Should Nico keep his Mercedes drive? It’s debatable.

      1. Rick (@wickedwicktheweird)
        28th November 2016, 12:15

        Nico didn’t want to take the risk, and the others lacked straightline speed in order to challenge any mercedes car. Its pretty difficult to overtake there without enough straightline speed, Alonso knows all about it too.

      2. So much stupidity in this post.

        A rare feat. Congrats.

    32. Hesitated between Hamilton, Hulkenberg and Alonso.

      They all were flawless this week-end. In the end, I gave it to Hamilton as he did all he could to take that title, without breaking any law or having it backfire to him. He was in control from friday morning to sunday evening.

      1. Hamilton is such a “teen-age girl-ish”, pouty, sulky embarrassment … so sad.

        1. @elchinero Thanks for laugh of the day :) Your budding, incisive journalistic talent is clear for all to see. Can’t wait for more intelligent and mature commentary from you.

          Watching that silly teenage girly Hamilton, privately jetting off into the distance. Probably to hire yet another person to hold up two hands upon which he can continue to count his tally of GP wins and pole positions…

          If only to be a sulky teenie weenie girly wirly! Bwaaah!

    33. Rosberg because he held his nerve in the face of adversity.

    34. @keithcollantine you may consider changing this next season to Driver of the Race/Day since that seems to be what most people are voting for anyway (sadly).

      1. He could also change the text above the poll to

        Cast your vote below and point out to everyone else why they are all wrong and don’t understand how the poll works in the comments.

        There isn’t a right or wrong answer, get over it!

    35. Nico. For handling all the pressures and not letting Ham’s ‘tactics’ worked. Also I am so much wondering how furious some Hamilton’s fans will be in the comment area if their roles switched.

    36. I voted for Nico Rosberg. Maybe I’d have voted differently if Hamilton hadn’t driven like a sore looser, but he did. This was a well deserved World Drivers’ Championship drive by Nico.
      I should add that for Max Verstappen to finish 4th when he was at one point running last is a very commendable achievement.

    37. I know most will go for one of the top 3 because all the focus was on them this weekend, but my DOTW was actually Nico Hulkenberg. He had a great weekend, out qualified and outraced Perez and can head off into his next challenge with his head held high.

    38. Why on earth is everyone voting for rosberg now, he was constantly slower than Lewis all weekend, except for one move did nothing in the race that would stand out…. You’ve got to be kidding me

      1. I voted for Vettel, but I imagine that people voted for Rosberg because he delivered exactly what was necessary without risking his championship hopes under a mental strain that few of us will ever feel. Nico surely understood at the time that his one move on Verstappen was the most important pass of his career, and he pulled it off with style.

    39. Rick (@wickedwicktheweird)
      28th November 2016, 12:04

      Voted for Lewis Hamilton. He was mega in Q and i was seriously impressed with the way he bunched the field up. He reminded me of Schumacher back in Sepang in 1999. I don’t really understand the criticism he is getting. The guy was trying to win the championship, and made the race a lot more interesting in the proces of that! I’m getting tired of people criticising the drivers who make F1 more fun to watch!

      On a sidenote, i was happy to see the ‘old’ Vettel back yesterday. I’m happy for him to have a nice ending to a diffucult season!

    40. Probably some of the best form I’ve ever seen Lewis put into a race weekend. His qualifying was imperious and a demonstration of Lewis the unbeatable. The driver he must always bring to the track.

      His precision control of the race from the front in order to try and create the situation he needed was a masterclass.

      Kudos to Rosberg for keeping it together with an onslaught from the front and the back. The pressure must have been immense. Lewis threw the toughest he could muster at him, and yet he came through.

      Tough call, but Lewis gets it from me. Well, Nico’s got the trophy, why not? :)

    41. I feel sorry for Ricciardo.

      1. I imagine that the consolation of placing third in the championship will erase the memory of this weekend.

    42. My driver of the weekend was Hamilton, He was quick throughout the weekend taking a dominant pole and controlling the race to take the victory. There was nothing more he could have done to try and win the title.

      Some other drivers impressed in the race such as Vettel and Verstappen, but with Verstappen it was mainly due to him spinning and ending up last on the first lap, and both drivers were beaten by their teammates in qualifying.

      I was very surprised by the current voting results with Vettel on 30% and both Hamilton and Rosberg on 27%, this is a vote for driver of the weekend not driver of the year. Even if you say Rosberg didn’t try and settled for the second place which would secure him the title he was still outclassed all weekend by Hamilton.

    43. DOTW: Lewis Hamilton
      Leading a GP is one thing, being comfortably in a position to influence the podium places behind without the risk of losing the lead is another thing altogether.
      A stunning Saturday pole followed by a supreme Sunday race. Taking into account the performance swings of the other drivers, it was an easy vote for the season finale.

    44. I think Hamilton deserves it.

    45. Sebastian = qualified 5th behind teammate and a Red Bull, lucked into a good strategy for once.
      Hamilton = played dirty but still couldn’t seal the deal, out classed by Rosberg
      Verstappen = Lap 1, Turn 1 crash, understeered into Hulk, 100% his fault.
      Rosberg = overtake of the night, withstood tremendous pressure, got the job done. DOTW for sure.

    46. Wow, reading all the comments how most are not able to accept a different opinion here, completely not trying to view it from different perspectives..

      I can understand why people vote for Ham, Ros, Vet, Hulk or Max (or even someone else like Massa, Alo, Sergio; I didn’t pay enough attention to them to actually know). All have their strong points and weak points, and it is subjective how you balance them against each other.

      I voted for Vettel because although he lost in QP to Kimi, the race is most important. Also it was very close between them and it seems his last run was a little bit compromised by Max (unintentionally). Vettel drove a superb race with great overtakes and made the race at least somewhat exciting at the end. Obviously being lucky that plan B turns out to be the better strat, but I mean the same counts for Max, and many other great drives!

      I didn’t vote for Ros because well he was truly beaten in this race, but I do understand where others come from who voted for him, and for me that is fair enough.

      I didn’t vote for Ham, well the main reason is that he is in the best car, which is a huge point that has to be in consideration in any weekend, but even more so when the only true comparison (his teammate) drives super defensively (except for one overtake), so basically I have not enough information that he truely drove better than anyone else and it wasn’t just the car. But as with Ros I do understand people who voted for him!

      I didn’t vote for Max because in QP he was way off, and in the race he made the mistake in the beginning which caused him to be unable to fight Vettel at the end properly since his tires weren’t good enough anymore. However despite this he showed again that he is definitely a future WC in my mind.

      I would not understand if you voted for Kimi or Ric, since in the race they weren’t really special in any way. Only QP is not enough.

      And the others Hulk, Alo or Perez, I didn’t pay enough attention to them, which usually is the problem of all drivers ending up somewhere in the middle… I am sorry.

      1. don’t blame yourself @skylien If you are following only from a tv broadcast it is impossible to see what other drivers are doing.

        I didnn’t even saw Massa passing Alonso (I assume it was in a pitstop). And there is absolutely no footage of him pressuring Perez.

        Hulk was on a race of his own really, but apart from Max crashing into him, there isn’t pretty much anything else

        On the back, both Manors finished ahead of the Saubers, but we didn’t see any of that

        If you do want to follow more closely try to get some sort of live timing. Coverage has been awful this year

        1. @johnmilk

          Yes it is TV, and right even if you wanted you cannot really judge those guys at the back fairly. I will wait if F1 gets better next year or not before I look into this. The way it currently is my interest is actually fading slowly but surely.

    47. Hm, I didn’t expect Vettel to be ahead, sure he drove an okay race to end up third, but he was outqualified and profited from his teammate again getting a worse strategy, and Max spinning on the 1st lap, Hamilton holding up the top three etc. It was a good race, but the best? No. Rosberg was much more impressive, keeping calm, not risking too much, safely staying behind Hamilton, making that pass on Verstappen when needed, and getting his WDC. But I think that if he had been faster than Hamilton, he’d have gone for pole and the win. As it was, he had to play second fiddle here and look at the larger picture, as he has been doing for the last four races, so I gave it to Hamilton (and also because I don’t agree with those saying ROS at least did what team wanted – easy when they aren’t working against your target), who at least made it a notable, tense race.

      I also was impressed with what Massa did, outqualifying Bottas one last time, and keeping Alonso (who also had a good weekend) behind, while getting very close to the two FI cars (Hulk also again, well done also for giving Max space in that 1st corner).

    48. Voted my man Lewis.

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