2016 F1 season driver rankings #7: Vettel

2016 F1 season review

Posted on

| Written by

Sebastian Vettel endured his second win-less season in three years in 2016 and the Ferrari driver’s frustration was clear to see.

Sebastian Vettel

Beat team mate in qualifying 10/21
Beat team mate in race 10/13
Races finished 17/20
Laps spent ahead of team mate 580/883
Points 212

His season year at Ferrari had got off to a very promising start: Vettel led the first dozen laps of the year. But the first in a series of Ferrari tactical errors opened the door for Mercedes to capitalise.

On this occasion they passed up the chance to make a free tyre change during a red flag period. Six races later in Canada Vettel kissed goodbye to his lead when he was brought in for a pit stop during a Virtual Safety Car period which swiftly ended.

It’s therefore no surprise he began challenging the calls which came from the pit wall during the race. This happened at the very next race in Baku and again in Germany. A frustrating Monaco Grand Prix, where an early tyre change left him stuck in traffic, can only have compounded Vettel’s frustration with Ferrari’s tactics.

Technical failures were another aggravation. Three times he took a five-place penalty due to a gearbox change. His car failed on the formation lap in Bahrain, where he was due to start third behind the Mercedes again, and a tyre blow-out put him out in Austria.

Vettel’s breakdowns were hardly any more frequent than his team mate’s but they tended to occur when he was looking especially competitive. At Singapore, one of his strongest tracks, an anti-roll bar failed during qualifying.

While all this was undeniably taxing Vettel should have been able to rise above it more successfully than he did. He plainly let frustration get the better of him in Mexico and had been simmering away long before his run-in with Max Verstappen and the incorrect radio messages it prompted. Side-swiping Daniel Ricciardo while the Red Bull driver was passing him cost Vettel a podium.

The surprising detail that a one-lap specialist like Vettel was out-qualified by Kimi Raikkonen has invited various explanations. One is that Vettel was doing the bulk of the team’s 2017 development in practice during the second half of the year. This would explained how Vettel managed to win the pre-break qualifying battle 8-4 yet lost the second half 7-2.

But even giving Vettel the benefit of the doubt on that count, he was evidently the more successful of Ferrari’s two drivers this year. The car was capable of more, however, and it wasn’t just his team which came up short.

Go ad-free for just £1 per month

>> Find out more and sign up

Over to you

Might be poor by his standards but it was still a decent season.

What’s your verdict on Sebastian Vettel’s 2016 season? Which drivers do you feel he performed better or worse than? Have your say in the comments.

Add your views on the other drivers here:

The F1 Fanatic Driver Rankings are produced by referring to:

View race-by-race notes on Sebastian Vettel

Australia – Ferrari were comfortably the second-quickest team and Vettel easily out-qualified Raikkonen. A shock opening win looked to be on the cards as Vettel out-dragged the Mercedes pair and was followed by his team mate. The red flag was exactly what he didn’t need, but Ferrari’s unwillingness to take a chance on the medium tyres exacerbated the disadvantage. Vettel never looked like being able to pull far enough ahead of Rosberg to win after the restart, and lost second to Hamilton too.

Bahrain – Lost a quarter of an hour’s running in second practice due to a suspension problem. In qualifying he made a slight mistake at the last corner but he was never going to find the half-second gap to Mercedes. His race prospects ended on the formation lap when the Ferrari motor expired.

China – Desiring a fresh set of soft tyres for the race, Vettel elected to do a single run in Q3. The gamble didn’t pay off: he took fourth. Squeezed between Raikkonen and Kvyat at the start, Vettel was clearly embarrassed to knock his team mate into a race-ruining spin. From then on he got his act together, passing two cars on the way into the pits and plenty more after he came back out on super-softs. That meant he was able to use softs for the final stint, which put him at an advantage when he left the pits behind the medium-tyres Kvyat. Vettel took him for second on his out-lap.

Russia – Arrived in Sochi knowing he would take a five-place grid drop for a gearbox change. By the time it was announced he’d suffered another setback – electrical problems in second practice keeping him from doing a race stint simulation. Nonetheless he qualified second, which was clearly the best the car was capable of. Starting seventh put him in the firing line from Kvyat, however, who dumped him into the barriers after two hits in as many corners.

Spain – Said Ferrari were mystified by their loss of pace in qualifying after they’d been within a few tenths of Mercedes in practice, and seemed to be hardest hit of the team’s two drivers. He got off the line well came out of turn one with only the Mercedes and Ricciardo ahead, but let Verstappen and Sainz get the better of him on the run to turn four. He soon re-passed Sainz after the start and closed on the Red Bulls, but although switching to a three-stop strategy got him ahead of Ricciardo it meant he lost out to Verstappen and Raikkonen.

Monaco – Ferrari’s mystery loss of grip in qualifying continues to plague them. Vettel was specially unhappy having run strongly in final practice. In the race he made a bold early move off wet weather tyres but his reward was to be stuck behind Massa’s slow Williams. That ended his podium hopes, but while he blamed himself for being unable to find a way past he was trying to do the near-impossible.

Canada – Having been quickest in the disrupted Saturday morning practice session he produced a surprise with his second run in Q3, finding half a second to get within two-tenths of the Mercedes. Vettel then made a blistering start to take the lead, though he nearly lost it when he slipped up at the end of the first lap. Ferrari’s decision to pit him under the Virtual Safety Car cost him the win, and though he made a couple of further errors it had no effect on his eventual position.

Europe – Ferrari were not the force they were in Canada. Red Bull and Force India beat them in qualifying, though only very narrowly. Querying Ferrari’s pit call ultimately had no bearing on his finishing position, and its doubtful he could have finished higher than second.

Austria – Felt he would have been able to push Mercedes in a dry qualifying session, and was unhappy with his conservative final effort on the quickly drying track. A gearbox change penalty dropped him behind Raikkonen. He ran a long opening stint in the race which might have brought him into contention but his right-rear tyre exploded without warning.

Britain – A second consecutive five-place grid penalty for a gearbox change ensured he went into the race on the back foot, but a scruffy Q3 didn’t help matters.

Hungary – At last had a weekend free of major problems and did well to split the Red Bulls at a track where the Ferrari was not the second-quickest car. At the first round of pit stops he successfully undercut Verstappen, who then got stuck behind the other Ferrari. He then ran a long middle stint to give him a run at Ricciardo at the end of the race, but couldn’t find a way by.

Germany – Admitted he hadn’t got a balance he was happy with in the Ferrari after being out-qualified by Raikkonen. However a quick start meant he led the Ferrari charge, though he wasn’t able to capitalise on Rosberg’s slow getaway. Vettel’s pace slowed at the end of his first stint on softs which explains why he was reluctant to pit early to undercut Verstappen ahead of his final pit stop, extending his run to the chequered flag on softs. He also queries his team’s strategy in Baku following their slip-up in Canada, suggesting some trust has been lost.

Belgium – Not on a par with Raikkonen in qualifying but made a superb getaway. Unfortunately he then indulged in his occasional habit of turning into the first corner as if no one else was there (see also Mexico 2015). This provoked a three-car tangle which, according to team principal Maurizio Arrivabene, cost Ferrari a potential double podium finish. From then on he got his head down and produced solid pace and good passes, but the damage had already been done.

Italy – His second run in Q3 got him ahead of Raikkonen on the grid despite running wide at the exit of Parabolica. He backed out of lunging at Rosberg at the start, and from there on his race was straightforward aside from a sluggish first pit stop. Racing Hamilton for second place wasn’t an option as the Ferraris had to pit twice.

Singapore – Was off Raikkonen’s pace in practice and complained of a lack of rear grip. However a broken anti-roll bar wrecked his qualifying effort, leaving him last on the grid. Much like Hamilton in Spa, a plentiful supply of fresh tyres made his job of cutting through the field rather easier, and he recovered to fifth place. He was fortunate that the early Safety Car minimised his losses in the opening laps, but to only lose six seconds to Raikkonen from lap two while making up all those places was a fine effort.

Japan – His three-place grid penalty from Malaysia meant he started behind the Red Bulls instead of in front of them. However he jumped Ricciardo at the start and demoted Perez soon afterwards. A podium looked a strong possibility but his long middle stint – which Vettel said he was “keen to go for” – left him vulnerable to being undercut by Hamilton. That’s exactly what happened after Vettel lost a huge amount of time in traffic. An aggressive switch to softs for the final stint wasn’t enough to claim the place back and he had to nurse his tyres to the end.

Malaysia – Pipped Raikkonen to fifth on the grid and made a good start to get alongside Verstappen. He tried to pin the blame for the turn one collision on the Ferrari drivers’ favourite scapegoat, but the fact of the matter was Vettel braked too late and the stewards saw as much.

United States – Said he was unable to balance his car on Friday after losing a small wing element. Come qualifying he still wasn’t completely happy with his car and was beaten by Raikkonen. Not for the first time this year he tried to take a normal racing line through turn one at the start irrespective of what his rivals were doing and was tapped, though fortunately without lasting damage. Running long in the first stint gave him the option of using a two-stopper which might have got him ahead of Raikkonen had his team mate not retired.

Mexico – Surprisingly topped the times on Friday but was deeply unimpressed after qualifying during which he found no pace on the super-soft tyres. That was nothing compared to what followed after the race, however. Having run a long first stint and pressed on in the second half of the race he caught Verstappen but exploded in anger when the Red Bull driver went off at turn one without ceding position. Vettel then barged into the side of Ricciardo when the other Red Bull tried to take advantage. In his defence, his race engineer gave him the incorrect impression that Verstappen had been told to let him through. But that doesn’t excuse his complete loss of temper – had he kept control and not lashed out at Ricciardo he would have kept his podium finish.

Brazil – Admitted to being too conservative at Juncao on his final lap which account for his sub-one-tenth gap to Raikkonen, two places ahead. The same corner caught him out in the wet race and Vettel struggled to make an impression from then on. Verstappen crushed him aside late in the race though Vettel eventually got by Sainz for fifth.

Abu Dhabi – Was ‘best of the rest’ on Friday but a gearbox problem struck during his race simulation. He was distracted by an error from Verstappen ahead of him during his final qualifying run and ended up fifth. However he ran a long middle stint before switching to super-softs at the end of the race to take advantage of the slow pace dictated by Hamilton. This paid off, allowing him to pass the Red Bulls for third. But he couldn’t find a way past Rosberg, ironically because the Mercedes driver was occasionally getting DRS activation from his team mate.

2016 F1 season review

Browse all 2016 F1 season review articles

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...

Got a potential story, tip or enquiry? Find out more about RaceFans and contact us here.

73 comments on “2016 F1 season driver rankings #7: Vettel”

  1. Only 7th?! I mean, honestly! What we are doing here? Trying to have accurate F1 driver ranking or Ping-Pong?!

    OK, now with serious face :-). I think fair position for Seb this year. Hope to see both Ferrari guys fighting for better position in the championship and also in this ranking next year!

    Quick question for Keith – can you please post (perhaps after whole ranking) all rankings for every year (I don’t know from what year you’re doing them?). It should be very interesting to see it and add it to for example F1Metrics ranking…


    1. That is at least a funny comment

    2. Opening is clearly COTD.

  2. I was expecting Pérez and Vettel in the reverse order, though I don’t feel there’s much between them.
    However, IMHO Kimi and Vettel were closer than 7th vs 11th reflects. Both had an ok season, with Vettel having a few more highlights and Kimi somewhat disappointing in his on-track battles with other drivers.

    1. It’d been more realistic if it went

      6 VES
      7 FI 1
      8 FI 2 (TCTC, imho)
      9 VET

    2. Kimi only actually finished ahead of Vettel three times in races where they both finished. One was in Spain (where a strategic blunder cost Vettel and Ricciardo), one was in Singapore (where Vettel started last, yet was only one place behind by the flag), and the other was Britain. It looked better superficially because of Kimi’s improved qualifying form but the situation didn’t really improve for Raikkonen much in the races.

  3. 3 drivers in between Raikkonen and Vettel? Funny.

    1. Not really. People have fixated on the fact that Raikkonen outqualified Vettel over the course of the season (just) while ignoring the fact that he was (again) comprehensively outraced.

      If any other driver had been outraced by their teammate 10 times out of 13 races there would be calls for them to lose their seat. It never seems to happen with Raikkonen who remains a fan favourite despite clearly not being the driver he once was.

      1. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
        13th December 2016, 14:01

        @geemac Vettel has just been Ferrari’s #1 – to me he’s looked weak during the last races of 2016.

      2. Difference was that Vettel was almost always given the favourable strategy; look at Abu Dhabi, Suzuka, Mexico for example. Raikkonen was probably the quicker driver over the course of the year. Vettel also crashed into Raikkonen a fair bit – look at Spa and Shanghai.

      3. @geemac

        comprehensively outraced


        Far from it. Raikkonen was taken out of contention (by Vettel or maybe Kvyat or Verstappen, doesn’t matter) at Shanghai and Spa where he’d probably have had a strong second in the race at least. He was right on Vettel’s gearbox during the initial laps at Monza. It usually seemed Ferrari were keen on giving Raikkonen the sub-optimal strategy although I don’t think they can be blamed for Abu Dhabi. Unlike last year we didn’t see Vettel actually overtake Raikkonen on pure pace in any race, we saw it only through deviating strategies. He was easily the better of the two Ferrari drivers in the second half of the season.

        1. Being the better of the two doesn’t mean much in context though. Vettel was woeful at times this season and even when Raikkonen was the lead Ferrari in a race he never actually looked like he was going to challenge on outright pace.

      4. (@geemac)
        Keith, you’ve taken your Vettel fanboyism a little too far once again. I’m no defender of Kimi no longer reaching his potential, but Ferrari consistently gave him atrocious strategies which resulted in him finishing behind Vettel more often than not.

        They only kept Kimi on again to be a blatant No. 2 and massage the ego of a driver with many championships and a very average degree of talent, and even then they ended up having to resort to strategy to keep an old man behind. Ferrari are a mess.

  4. In that case, Sainz will be far overvalued!!

    1. WheeledWarrior
      13th December 2016, 14:43

      Indeed. Sainz did a very nice job this year, but 10th/9th would have been high enough. Personally I would have ranked both FI-drivers higher than him.

    2. Sainz was one of the best of the year. One could say that obtaining 42 points while Kvyat got only 4 since Spain was not Sainz’s merit but Kvyat’s fault. But Sainz was able to be in the points quite often when the car was clearly not suited for those positions. On the other Hand what Sainz did in Interlagos wasn’t noted by the press. He was 4th a few turns before the end, with wear tires. He never had an error during that race and we saw Lewis, Rosberg, Verstappen, Alonso, Vettel, Raikonnen, etc having problems. So yes, IMHO Vettel doesn’t deserve to be ranked higher than Sainz and Raikonnen should be ahead of Perez just behind Vettel.

      1. My opinion is that Sainz nothing special has shown throughout the season. Defeating Kvyat was no great achievement. Kvyat was knocked down by his swap with Max. . I have hardly seen a special action or overtaking of him this year. Also in Interlagos he just kept driving his laps where many were falling back by trying intermediates. He changed his tires during SC, so they were not worn. A overrated driver with a huge wrong self-image.

  5. It’s so many races back with this longest ever season it’s easy to forget how well Vettel started the season. I said it in another thread but I think Raikkonen’s apparent competitiveness was more to do with the decline in form from an increasingly frustrated Vettel than Raikkonen actually being on song.

    1. I think Raikkonen’s apparent competitiveness was more to do with the decline in form from an increasingly frustrated Vettel than Raikkonen actually being on song

      I would agree. It’s not like Kimi suddenly found something that he couldn’t find during his last 2 seasons. Vettel was mediocre at best during the 2nd half of the season. I wouldn’t rank Vettel higher than #7 or #8 this season as he just wasn’t Ferrari #1 driver material all season.

      1. Indeed, Räikkönen seems to be working a lot more than racing lately. He’s recovered well from being destroyed by Alonso, but there haven’t been great performances from him lately.

    2. ColdFly F1 (@)
      13th December 2016, 14:02

      He started well, but so did all drivers ranked above him.
      And of those, all (but Sainz to some extent) kept that level throughout the year.

      Vettel at 6th or 7th seems an overall fair reflection of the full season.

      1. @coldfly

        Yeah I’m not contesting his ranking for the entire season. Seems fair.

    3. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
      13th December 2016, 20:11

      @philipgb I think you’ve hit the nail on the head. Vettel has always been tailed by hordes of mindlessly braying doubters, somehow uncomfortable with the fact that as a fresh faced kid in an energy drink-branded car he took a sledgehammer to the competitive order in F1 and humbled the likes of Alonso, Hamilton, Ferrari and McLaren. But everyone who was paying attention, everyone who stood by the racetrack and watched, knows that they saw a driver with a generational gift.

      However, undoubtedly, more so than Hamilton, much more than Alonso, Vettel is prone to balder patches of performance. A 2014 season spent trailing Daniel Ricciardo and a wooden start to the 2012 season before his victory in Bahrain predominantly had their roots in car balance, something Vettel is very sensitive to. However the vast difference between the frankly extraordinary level Vettel sustained in 2015 and this year is, as you say, symptomatic of a driver distracted by bigger picture concerns.

      A quick canter through the opening races of the season makes this easier to sympathise with: a strategic blunder costing victory in Melbourne, a DNS with engine failure in Bahrain, internecine contact in the first corner in Shanghai, a Kvyat-induced retirement in Sochi, another possible victory lost to strategic malaise in Barcelona and a car good enough for P1 in FP3 and Q1 in Monaco, but only to go cold come Q3. Couple that with repeated gearbox failures and Verstappen-related chaos, and you might start to realise that Vettel’s late season outbursts have deep roots.

      Switching to Ferrari was really the only big roll of the dice of Vettel’s career to date, and despite an auspicious start in 2015, the dream has rather gone off the rails this year. This, and a continual saga of trials and tribulations took Vettel out of what is clearly quite a finite window of mental performance and focus. It doesn’t mean another driver couldn’t have handled things more lucidly, but it equally doesn’t mean that he and Ferrari can’t be very successful in the future once the team are sailing through calmer waters.

      1. @william-brierty that’s a great summary. vettel showed flashes of brilliance this year but he went off the boil quickly when the team and eventually the car’s performance started to let him down.

        i hope next year allows more than one team to compete for the drivers’ title, but i think the sameyness of the tracks and cars mean this is unlikely.

        1. Vettel was obviously outstanding in a Red Bull that suited him and his driving style, however when it didn’t suit him, Ricciardo beat him, and he now looks out of sorts at Ferrari most of the time.
          The mark of a true champion is how he performs in adversity, and so for me the jury is still out.

  6. I think that Vettel is such a perfectionist in all he does, that when things go against him, he gets frustrated and his performance drops. If Ferrari had made the right strategic calls and the car had been reliable, I think his season would have looked totally different.

  7. Yeah, tough to judge Vettel’s season. I think it’s a tad stern to say that he should have risen above the frustrations, because they certainly did pile on. One reflection that I had on several occasions this year was that it’s not surprising that a guy who won four consecutive championships very early in his career would find it difficult to deal with lack of success. He has been somewhat petulant, yet paradoxically i find he’s become a more likeable character if that makes any sense. I would imagine that another wanting product from Ferrari will spell the end of that relationship.

  8. But seriously Saint above #7 where he made a series of mistakes and compromised his races. He only looks good in comparison to kvyat but has done nothing spectacular to rate a higher ranking on this year’s form.

    Unless you are giving extra credits for havingg in a 2015 ferrari in Toro Rossi. Defies all logic.

    1. Fully agree. He didn’t show anything special this year. Only a big mouth how good he is.

  9. 1. Ricciardo
    2. Rosberg
    3. Hamilton
    4. Verstappen
    5. Alonso
    6. Sainz

    1. My Guess
      1. Hamilton
      2. Ricciardo
      3. Rosberg
      4. Verstappen
      5. Alonso
      6. Sainz

      1. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
        13th December 2016, 16:41

        sorry but I can’t help but question seeing Ricciardo at the top – Ricciardo was not convincingly better than Max this year. He edged him slightly but Max didn’t want to blow up Red Bull in his inaugural year and was a lot more stunning that Ricciardo at times.

        1. Unfortunately the results tell a different story. It’s one thing to be exciting, it’s another to be the best driver over the course of a season. Max’s time will come.

          1. @guybrushthreepwood

            I’d put alonso and sainz (of those remaining in Keith’s ranking, of course, i don’t think Carlos drove P5 year-round) above verstappen, but that’s a sensible b list you’ve shared.

        2. Ben Rowe (@thegianthogweed)
          13th December 2016, 17:28


          While Verstappen has had many weekends that were better than Ricciardo, most of the races where Ricciardo was better than Verstappen was when he was FAR better. Verstappen has had several scrappy weekends and one simply awful race weekend at Monaco. He had a crash in practice, a crash in qualifying, followed by a crash in the race involving just himself. Ricciardo hasn’t even had 1 of these moments, not even in any of the practice sessions over the whole season. If ever Ricciardo isn’t preforming as well as he usually is, he hasn’t been much worse. Maybe just a little slower but he hasn’t started making errors, getting penalties or crashing like Verstappen has. He has made pretty much no mistakes all year and been extremely consistent. Probably the most consistent driver out of all of them. He hasn’t even had any slightly poor races like Verstappen had in Spa, let alone Monaco. He also made a mistake at one race where he thought the team had pitted him when they hadn’t. No other drivers have made that mistake this year. While Verstappen has had plenty of good races and several that clearly were better than Ricciardo’s, it would have been far better if he had been as consistent as his team mate. Verstappen has done extremely well, but I can see Ricciardo being rated several places above him. Verstappen probably will get better though. But then Ricciardo may well get better too.

          1. Verstappens majestic P2 in Spa got ruined by Vettel, which ruined the bottom of his car as well.
            Don’t bother trying to pin point the blame on Ves, even Raikkonen clearly explained he and Ves where just sitting ducks at turn1.

            Races that went Ricciardo’s way while Verstappen did the better job are Baku, Germany, Malaysia and Mexico. Races compromised due to clutch issues in Monza and Singapore.

            Ofcourse Ricciardo was more consistant, but with reasons, Verstappen did beat his team mate on track on several occoassions (actually overtaking on track). Verstappen was the only driver all season to succesfully overtake and defend off the Mercedes drivers.

          2. So, Max was not FAR better at Interlagos?? No, just a bit. Yeah….
            Maybe you have to see the race again.
            And penalties? Max got only 1 this year. I think RIC was better this year, just a bit. But Max made RIC peform on a higher level from Spain on and Max showed a far better potential.

          3. Ben Rowe (@thegianthogweed)
            13th December 2016, 20:04

            I never said that Verstappen wasn’t far better at times. In Brazil, he was obviously better than Ricciardo but Ricciardo wasn’t doing a poor job. But there have been several occasions where Ricciardo has been doing a good job and Verstappen has messed his own race up by mistakes. Ricciado just hasn’t made these mistakes at any race. But whenever Verstappen was better, Ricciardo was at least keeping out of trouble. I was talking about the very risky move in the braking zone that Verstappen did on Kimi in spa. That was very nearly a big incident and that sort of move was banned soon after. It’s not just me that think he had a bad weekend at Spa.

          4. Strangly enough Kimi only spoke about a legal defensive move on the straight, telling the speed difference was quite large and he had to break hard. Furthermore Kimi had no troubles whatsover.

            The defensive move on the straight was a legal move, rest of it is irrelevant.

            Ricciardo had a very solid season, no DNF’s, no crashes. But there have been several occasions Verstappen made him fade… Canada, Austria, GB, Malaysia, Brazil and Abu Dhabi. Ricciardo should have had a firm overhand in Canada and Austria considering his enourmous expierence.

  10. He wasn’t that bad, but he failed to impress.
    If last year he made everybody thinks that the title was a matter of time, this year everybody is thinking about how long he will wait before looking for a way out.

    1. Vettel was hampered by his team in various ways but he also made mistakes by himself entirely too often this year.

      On the top of my head he spun at he ran wide into the grass in Australia, at Silverstone he spun and couldn’t get any higher after that (backend of the points) despite his car advantage, was at fault in the lap 1 incidents in China, Belgium and Malaysia, he was at fault in Mexico with the RIC incident, he was outqualified by RAI (first time RAI outqualified a teammate since 2007 I think) and almost outscored by him too.

      It just wasn’t a good year for VET and quite frankly, I think there were atleast 10 drivers who had better seasons than him for their respective teams.

  11. My guess:
    1. Ricciardo
    2. Hamilton
    3. Verstappen
    4. Rosberg
    5. Alonso
    6. Sainz

    My opinion:
    1. Ricciardo
    2. Rosberg
    3. Verstappen
    4. Hamilton
    5. Alonso
    6. Sainz

    1. @sravan-pe I’m a fan of Rosberg, but Hamilton should be higher.

    2. Mine:
      1. Hamilton
      2. Ricciardo
      3. Verstappen
      4. Rosberg
      5. Alonso
      6. Sainz
      I don’t mind shuffling the first three, but I’d pick them on quality/entertainment factor alone. Rosberg would have lost the championship easily if Hamilton’s bad luck had been different, and there’s no way, I feel, he’d have made it even into the top 6. He had very few standout moments. Verstappen I’m tempted to put higher because he made the season worth watching, but just a bit too inconsistent to merit that.

      1. Yep, I’d pay that mate!

      2. Think you being unfair on Rosberg – While there may not have been flashy moments he was super consistent particularly in Qualifying where he handled pressure very well at times and really forced Hamilton to dig deep. There where moments and Baku is a great example where he manged to post a faster lap than Hamilton and a qualifying session after which Hamilton seemed almost to self destruct in response – he in turn did not really (Monaco aside) have a really bad weekend.

    3. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
      13th December 2016, 16:45

      If we are going to have Ricciardo at the top, we should add Wehrlein/Perez/Bottas/Hulkenberg/Sainz and just about anyone there as well…

      Just to be fair to Ricciardo and the other drivers.

      Let’s leave Hamilton/Verstappen/Rosberg out of the top 10 since they can claim the top spot more than the aforementioned…

      1. Hehe, a Verstappen fan I see. If it makes you feel any better, the good folk over at motorsport.com also picked Ricciardo as number 1 (although that didn’t stop their Dutch editor selecting Max as number 1 and Ricciardo as number 4… And Sainz 10th!

        If there is one thing 2016 taught us is that the Dutch are unashamedly and passionately bias. Hello Verstappen driver of the day award! Lol.

        1. If there is one thing 2016 taught us is that the Dutch are unashamedly and passionately bias. Hello Verstappen driver of the day award! Lol.

          Brings a tear to my eye when everyone except the Belgians share this opinion. @guybrushthreepwood, they are by far the worst people ever to talk to about Formula One now. And dozens of people whom I have never even heard mentioning F1 are suddenly life long fans. I hope my own people are nothing alike next year with Vandoorne.

          1. @xtwl
            Out of curiosity, why do Belgians not share that opinion?

          2. Brainfart I guess, it’s especially the Belgians who are annoyed by it. So it should’ve said something like ‘not only the Belgians’.

          3. @xtwl They’re not that bad, honestly.

            The folks at the former NL East Indies meanwhile….. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4q5sMEnjKg8

        2. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
          13th December 2016, 17:28

          A Verstappen skeptic and critic until Brazil – I was the one telling folks that Sainz was as good as Verstappen last year despite the results – both are great drivers.

          As for Motorsport, I’m glad they picked Ricciardo. I adore the guy. I hope it serves as consolation for the average year he’s had on track. In a year where 3 drivers have pulled incredible feats, Ricciardo could have joined Kvyat at Toro Rosso and would have if Kvyat was slightly better and didn’t make some multiple mistakes at the start of the season.

          Ricciardo doesn’t realize how close he came to being in Kvyat’s shoes this year.

          1. It doesn’t say much for Max if Ricciardo had an average year and still out-shone him.

          2. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
            14th December 2016, 1:29

            @guybrushthreepwood The team bosses in the paddock don’t think so, do they?

            Max Verstappen 183
            Daniel Ricciardo 133

            That’s a commanding difference even assuming that Red Bull and Toro Rosso voted for Daniel over Max which they may not necessarily have.

            I understand you like him and if you are going to like a driver Daniel is a great choice!!! I hope we see a fantastic fight next year and he can prevail but Red Bull is renowned for the meteoric and inexplicable rise and fall of drivers.

  12. It wasn’t a season to remember for Vettel.

    But lets not jump to conclusions, Vettel was the only driver to finish the German gp one lap earlier than everybody else, if that doesn’t tell you something, I don’t know what will

    1. And a current 4xWorld Champion (in a row too) in a farless dominant car than the current Mercedes.

      1. Without competition from his team mate and still a quite superior car.

        The margins of superiority ddoesnt matter if the car is the best.

        1. guys, this was just a joke

  13. This season show that Kimi is no longer good enough for Ferrari. Vettel had a horrid season and still managed to score more points. Had Vettel had the same amount of errors on different days he would’ve had two wins and a hand full of podiums and points more enlarging the gap to Raikkonen.

    In similar fashion Hamilton pushed Rosberg and the other way around Vettel needs someone too to lift him to another level. If I were to hire a driver on the current grid it would always be Vettel first but if I were to rank them in order of performance now I’d say Hamilton edges him just, only thanks to the level Rosberg pushed him to.

    1. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
      13th December 2016, 20:13

      @xtwl I would have said that about Kimi last year and the year before that. This year if anyone underperformed at Ferrari it would be Vettel and Ferrari – the only one who upped his game was Raikonnen.

      Sure Vettel got more points but how many of those did Vettel get himself?

      1. @freelittlebirds If you’re saying Vettel and Ferrari underperformed how can you ever come to the conclusion Kimi upped his performance? By comparison to what?

        Sure Vettel got more points but how many of those did Vettel get himself?

        I’d say about 100%?

        1. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
          14th December 2016, 14:48

          @xtwl Because Kimi was better than Vettel this year especially the last half of the season.

          Vettel started talking more during the race than he was driving…

          It’s no doubt that Ferrari did worse than last year. Granted, the Ferrari family suffered a terrible loss that affected them not just at the technical level but the emotional level as well. The tragedy that befell James Allison’s family surely had a lasting effect on all of them, including Vettel.

          So in that respect, I would definitely cut them some slack. That could be why the “iceman” was the least affected:-)

    2. 11-10?

  14. And the Merc drivers haven’t shown up yet. So at last one of them in the top five. Whatever.

  15. What do you smoke having ranked Vettel only 7-th?

  16. Talented, quick but lacking skills in traffic. It is hard for him to win if he can’t start from the first row. Not skilled as the likes of Ham, Alo, Ves or Ric

    1. To Martijn:
      That skills from your list have only Ham & Alonso, others needed quick car as well.
      Think twiсe, recollect 2012, Vettel was only 22-th after 1 lap and he ended up in 6-th (only 9 sec from 1-st place).

      Ves & Ric didn’t show what a slow car can achieve, both were in Torro Rosso and both never showed what Vettel did in TR – have 1-st place in the rain – his car was miles away from top 3.

      1. Think twiсe, recollect 2012, Vettel was only 22-th after 1 lap and he ended up in 6-th (only 9 sec from 1-st place).

        Remember OpinionInF1 that the RB was the second fastest car. It helps to cut through the field. Also, some drivers didn’t really fight: notably the TR drivers and Michael Schumacher.

  17. 1. HAM
    2. VES
    3. RIC
    4. ALO
    5. SAI
    6. ROS
    7. VET
    8. PER
    9. RAI
    10. HUL

  18. To put a different slant on this low position – Vettel only got overtaken by another driver once in the entire season (Verstappen in Brazil). No other driver gets anywhere near him with this stat.

    It’s a strange stat bus pretty impressive really.

Comments are closed.