Top 10 Drivers of the season


World Champion
I thought I'd just do this since there has not been one

1. Vettel - No one else really given his record breaking season . The car was the class of the field but the whooping to teammate Webber by nearly 200 pts says it all about the man's relentless pursuit of records. Malaysia could have spelled trouble for him but Silverstone tyre debacle meant he won the season unopposed and crushing everyone

2. Hulkenberg - the Next Big Thing has shown enough qualities to indicate he deserves a top drive. Early part of the season he was hanging onto the top 10. Once the car improved and he was closer to the front he became a real nuisance to the front runners especially at Korea and Monza where it was no fluke. Absolute travesty that none of the top teams have signed him over his height and lack of finance but certainly not a lack of talent

3. Alonso - still the best driver on the grid in getting the Ferrari to 2nd in the championship. Great wins in China and Spain but lead down by bizarre decisions in Malaysia and Bahrain. The constant battle having to fight the superior Red Bull has lead to the first signs of his Ferrari relationship going sour

4. Grosjean - the first lap nutcase was gone and Romain finally found consistency and race craft as renowned from his junior days. More than not the Red Bull challenger later in the season. A string of impressive podiums as well as starting to put Kimi in the shade has lifted his reputation into a potential race winner and world champion

5. Raikkonen - having won the first race and displaying consistency to challenge Vettel initially. His season tailed off as soon as contract talks started with the issue over money. Feeling duped by his team over broken pay promises - his motivation dropped and a nasty side of the usually unflappable Iceman surfaced walking out on the team with 2 races to go.

6. Hamilton - Moving to Mercedes turned out to be great for Lewis as he found a new lease of life and a sense of freedom. The speed was clear to see over 1 lap unfortunately race day was a different story with fast wearing Mercedes. Took a well deserved victory in Hungary and has settled into the team well. However his season was affected by his struggles with the car designed for Schumacher/ Rosberg at times

7. Rosberg - Rather than being daunted by the challenge Nico coped well with all the attention Lewis was getting whilst managing to keep their friendship in tact for now. Not able to challenge Lewis over 1 lap he showed given the right conditions he can certainly match and outrace him. Took two impressive wins when the opportunities but also a lack of consistency and unreliability by Mercedes meant he only got 1 other podium and finishing in 6th position

8. Webber - it must be hard to finally accept your teammate is simply better and getting constant beatings by some margin. The realisation after Malaysia that he is fighting a teammate who's simply willing to take more risks outside his boundaries must be hard to take when the odds were already stacked against him. Still when he was hooked up to the track he was able to give his teammate good competition like in Suzuka and Brazil but it still wast not enough. Perhaps then it was right for him to call it day

9. Massa - the nice man of F1. Who showed signs of his old self gradually, outqualifying Alonso numerous times but unable to match his race day pace. He had many races where he was on his teammates pace and often ruined by misfortune not of his own making apart from Monaco.

10. Button - Having seen off Hamilton he must have thought he had a shot at the driver's title until the realisation the car was woefully off the pace early in the season and unlikely to challenge. He was still able to use experience to put Perez in his place with class drives in Spa, and Interlagos as well as displaying experience in managing different strategy to its maximum like Germany. What he lacked in 1 lap speed he more than made up with his race day pace over his younger teammate
I don't agree with Massa and Webber being in the top 10. They both scored just half of what their team mate managed, which IMO is the only real measure of performance. I do agree that Hulkenberg was second best, he actually scored almost 9 times what his team mate managed rather begging the question why is Kermit Guteriez still in a seat( I know its money). The fact Hulkenberg isn't in a top team for next year is criminal.
Kimi in 5th also seams too high he was just average, I would say both Mercedes boys out performed him. Button also showed up the supposedly very fast Perez and deserves more than 10th. Bottas looks a bit special on occasion as well.
Its also a shame DiResta doesn't get the credit he deserves, out scoring a supposedly solid and dependable Sutil by an extra 65%. He gets far too hard a time and deserves a top 10 place.

My top 10

1. Vettel
2. Hulkenberg
3. Alonso
4. Grosjean
5. Hamilton
6. Rosberg
7. Kimi
8. Button
9. DiResta
10. Bottas
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It amazes me to say this, but I would rate Grosjean in either 2nd or 3rd. I don't recall ever seeing such a turnaround in a driver's performance!

I would also rate Alonso lower than most. He had the FULL weight of the team behind him with Massa being a mere afterthought. The difference in performance was, therefore, to be expected.
Actually I would rate Kimi higher than Romain I know he couldn't arsed at the end of the season but who can blame him for that? His team weren't paying him and treated him like shit and then they put their full weight behind Groser..
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Kimi would be lower in my top ten. He had a thoroughly lazy season by his standards full of poor qualifying results he had to save on race day. The thought of the results he could if got if he'd stuck it somewhere decent on the grid frustrates me even now.

Can't find a place for Webber in the top ten either as all I saw all year was awful start after awful start.

I'm surprised Bianchi or Bottas hasn't crept in to a few peoples top tens. Bianchi for the fact he's the only driver to have ever impressed in a Marussia and Bottas for showing flashes of pure brillance in changable conditions despite having an awful car.

I think an argument could be made for Danny Ricciardo too (not by me though)

My top ten:

1. Vettel
2. Grosjean
3. Hulkenberg
4. Hamilton
5. Rosberg
6. Button
7. Alonso
8. Bottas
9. Bianchi
10. Raikkonen
well Alonso I know had his wobble but he has spent every race starting lower and finishing higher so he's obviously very switched on race day

Massa did outqualify Alonso numerous times - more than any other teammate except Hamilton in a season I might add and he was a lot closer in terms of race pace but the luck never went his way

Kimi's season seems to yo yo and really dropped off when he was talking about money or who he was going to drive for .

Webber had his moments like in Britain, and did show now then he could take it to Vettel but not quite consistently
Webber only ever drove well at tracks he liked and one of them is Britain so it's not surprising he shone there but I don't think he should be in the top ten not considering the car he had underneath him how he never managed to finish second in the championship to Vettel is beyond my comprehension, Vettel is obviously a very very talented driver but somehow Webber managed to make him look like a god behind the wheel through his piss poor performances...
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I would put Raikkonen higher despite misfortunes, he would achieve a better result as expected. The difference between him and Grosjean in the latter half of the season was due to the tyres going back to the previous season spec, as has been stated, that is why I would switch those two around, as in the first half of the season, Grosjean was very average, second half of the season, Raikkonen was nowhere near as bad as what Grosjean was, add to that, he had back problems, and then the outside matter with the team.

I really wouldn't put Massa or Webber the top 10, but considering that rarely anyone else in the field apart from the usual suspects did anything noteworthy more than once then I suppose so.

Despite not being a fan of 'Buttman' as Fenderman calls him, I think he should be higher up, definitely higher than Massa and Webber.

Both Mercedes drivers in my opinion weren't really special, they were hot and cold and tended to deliver on seperate occasions.

Alonso fizzled out after a while.

Vettel and Hulkenberg in my opinion probably deserve the top 2 spots since they consistently delivered and destroyed their team-mates.

Other than that, the rest had their moments.

That's mine.

Vettel was simply sublime, way above the rest.

Grosjean had a dodgy start to the season but was brilliant in the 2nd half. I consider Raikkonen lucky too, with a fortunate safety car in Korea and Grosjean having bad reliability (air pressure, engine) he could have actually finished behind the Frenchman, not to mention he got the development parts before Grosjean too.

Alonso got the points somehow, but I seem to remember Massa beating him on Saturdays a lot. He also seemed much more dejected this season too, perhaps Ferrari's inability to match Red Bull is starting to take affect.

I rate Hamilton this high on the basis that I think he was slightly unlucky with events and it's a new team, I've always rated Rosberg as a top driver (held in high regard by the Williams team, much like Bottas is) and the fact that Hamilton bested him in no mean feat, especially seeing as it was the Englishman's first season with the team and he says he never felt comfortable with the car.

Am I the only one who thinks people now rate Hulkenberg too high? Half his reputation is built on the race in Korea. That Sauber was a bloody good car in the latter stages of the season, paired with abnormally high speed and traction he couldn't be overtaken. Even after the race he said he knew straight away he would overtake Hamilton again. He did a great job, but when he car can qualify on the 2nd row at an aero track like Austin then clearly it should be scoring serious points every race.

Rosberg did pretty decent. He seems to be a bit of a demon on street circuits, but how much of that is down to Hamilton's dislike of the brakes, who knows. Definitely bolstered his rep in 2013.

Raikkonen had the backing of the team and capitalised while the car was more competitive and the tyres suited him. Quite disappointing in the 2nd half of the season where it's fair to say he was comprehensively beaten by Grosjean.

Riccardo, Bianchi and Bottas were all quite good, but not outstanding. Ricciardo's 1 second gap to Vergne on Saturdays proving enough to get the nod for Webber's seat. Bianchi did well to actually stand out in back marker car, and Bottas proved a steady pair of hands, very calm for a rookie and delivering when the chance came, can't ask for any more than that.
1. Vettel - peerless
2. Alonso - extracted every last bit out of the Ferrari in race trim at least
3. Equal Hamilton & Rosberg - Hamy was more consistent but Rosberg won more races
5. Grosjean - matured as a racing driver
6. Raikkonen - patches of brilliance and then went walkabout
7. Button - out performed the car on many occasions (most un-Button like)
8. Hulkenberg - deserves a top drive
9. Riccardo - Did enough to justify the second Red Bullseat
10. Bottas - When Williams finally got rid of the silly exhaust put in some excellent performances

Massa and Webber don't make my top 10 as both had race winning cars but didn't (win that is). Gutierezz (approximate spelling) might have sneaked in if he had performed better early on but it's very difficult for new drivers when there is no testing. Of the rest, meh!
I wonder who people would rate as the 5 worst drivers in 2013.

I think there could be quite a bit of difference too, Webber would make my list for example yet he is no.8 on Leone's best list. (Can't tag him?!)
Three Word Reviews

  1. S. Vettel - Not just car
  2. F. Alonso - Drags crap Ferrari
  3. N. Hulkenburg - Top teams' mistake
  4. K. Raikkonen - Good when paid
  5. L. Hamilton - Sorry about Sunday
  6. R. Grosjean - Second half saviour
  7. N. Rosberg - Street circuit stunner
  8. J. Bianchi - Memorable in Marussia
  9. J. Button - No grip, guys
  10. D. Ricciardo - Beat car's limits

    And the rest...
  11. S. Perez - Feistier than Button
  12. P. di Resta - Decent before Britain
  13. V. Bottas - Q3 North America
  14. F. Massa - Some talent shown
  15. C. Pic - Edged out Giedo
  16. G. Van der Garde - Better than feared
  17. M. Webber - Time to retire
  18. M. Chilton - Finished every race!!!
  19. J. Vergne - Twelve consecutive zeroes
  20. A. Sutil - Bar Monaco, shit.
  21. H. Kovalainen - Little of use
  22. E. Gutierrez - Six:Fifty One!
  23. P. Maldonado - Race Winner, Really?
DISCLAIMER: These rankings are informed by a range of criteria which include, but are not limited to, my impressions of their on track performance, my expectations of the particular drivers and their final results in the Championship.
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Just a general note for members and visitors to CTA who may not be familiar with my 'Clip' Fenderman persona re:
Despite not being a fan of 'Buttman' as Fenderman calls him, I think he should be higher up, definitely higher than Massa and Webber.

My irreverent names for drivers, team personnel, etc. are only used in my irreverent Rooters News threads. They bear no relation to my impressions or levels of respect for any individuals "targetted" in my spoof articles. As it happens I have followed Jenson Button's career from his karting days and have a great deal of respect for him as an individual and as a driver.

With regard to ranking the top ten drivers of the season I more or less go along with the championship table although I would suggest that the top three were Vettel, Alonso and Hamilton. The order can be argued about ad infinitum. Vettel did exactly what was expected and Alonso more or less did as expected. Without circumstances beyond his control Hamilton would have been at least third in the standings. Pundits and fans who expected him (or Mercedes for that matter) to end the season in the top three were few in number at the start. I certainly didn't and I would argue that he had to do a pretty good job to do that in a new team with a highly competitive team mate.
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teabagyokel - poor little Guttierrez down in 22nd behind Max Chilton? A little harsh on the beaver don't you think? He was starting to mix it up like a proper driver towards the end and his Japanese performance was certainly more worthy than anything Max did.
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