2017 F1

Driver Rankings: 2017 Canadian Grand Prix

Grand Prix; the recent Canadian Grand Prix reaffirmed this new 2017 Formula isn’t a fluke and can indeed genuinely produce racing better than any of the previous three to four seasons.

Lewis Hamilton was his typically classy and cool self throughout the entire race and took a convincing light to flag victory – marking his fourth career grand slam (pole, fastest lap and win whilst leading every lap).

But, further down the field, just what did all the other drivers get up to? We investigate…

Lewis Hamilton – 10/10

As per usual we’ll start with the Mercedes. You can’t fault Lewis Hamilton’s exceptional victory today. As aforementioned, Canada marked the fourth time in his career he’s achieved a grand slam. His other three were achieved at the 2014 Malaysian Grand Prix, 2015 Italian Grand Prix and 2017 Chinese Grand Prix. Suspiciously, apart from the Chinese one that was this year, the other two were achieved the years he won the World Championship. Nough’ said.

Valtteri Bottas – 10/10

Valtteri Bottas’ slick performance in the Canadian Grand Prix can’t be overlooked either. Although he only finished 2nd, Bottas did not put a single foot out of line. In actual essence, he lost the race in qualifying yesterday and was never given another chance at touching Hamilton’s ridiculously quick pace.

Sebastian Vettel – 9.5/10

It’s hard to tell how much driver error was to blame for Sebastian Vettel’s poor start. Either way, this was the only potential mistake the Ferrari driver all race. Once he realized he wasn’t fighting for the win but just mere points – he put on a sensational masterclass that peaked with his blinding overtake on Esteban Ocon at Turn 1.

Kimi Raikkonen – 6/10

In Canada, Kimi Raikkonen didn’t look like the Kimi who took had recently taken his first pole in eight years, but merely the 2014 Ferrari Kimi who was quite simply clumsy and slow. His first lap trip through the Turn 7 dirt was a costly and sloppy mistake that set the tone for a disappointing race from the Finn.

Max Verstappen – 10/10

He may have only lasted 11 laps before mechanical failure, but Max Verstappen gave Red Bull something to smile about in that short time. His blistering start, which saw him go from from 5th to 2nd in a few 100 meters, was something out of this world and took a perfect mixture of guts and skill. It was awful to see his race end the way it did.

Daniel Ricciardo – 10/10

I’m giving a lot of 10s out today! It’s just that most drivers drove superbly during the Canadian Grand Prix, Daniel Ricciardo especially included. Reading Red Bull’s PR, it was clear the level of pressure he was under in the closing laps from the Force India’s and Ferrari’s. In short, it was absolutely massive. But the Aussie kept his cool throughout and successfully brought home a deserved P3 – which he celebrated with a typical shoey.

Sergio Perez – 7/10

Sergio Perez’s ranking is lower than perhaps it should’ve been not because he didn’t let Ocon through, but because he wasn’t successful in keeping pace with Ricciardo. After multiple attempts at trying to overtake the Red Bull driver, it was clear Perez just didn’t have the pace. Once he lost the DRS, Vettel was set free and on both of the Force India’s, costing Perez and unnecessarily Ocon too.

Esteban Ocon – 10/10

Esteban Ocon’s driving defied his young age of just 20 in Montreal. He more than kept his own against Sergio Perez and made Sebastian Vettel’s job in overtaking especially hard. If I had to pick a Driver of the Day, Ocon would’ve received it with Hamilton in a close second. But, ultimately it was the lack of team orders that I believe potentially cost Ocon his first podium in Formula 1.

Felipe Massa – No rating

Felipe Massa has had a superb start to the 2017 Formula 1 season with consistently strong results. Unfortunately, his race in Canada didn’t even last a lap as a clumsy Carlos Sainz found himself spinning in to the back of a completely innocent Massa.

Lance Stroll – 9/10

Although I generally struggle to hide my doubts of Lance Stroll at times, his performance at his home race was pretty stunning. He kept it clean and participated in some extremely close and competitive racing with Nico Hulkenberg, Kevin Magnussen and Daniil Kvyat. Considering his 2017 season so far, to bring that car home in ninth was a good effort from the young Canadian.

Carlos Sainz – 3/10

The young Spaniard that is Carlos Sainz hasn’t had the best campaign in 2017. He received a three place grid penalty for an incident in Bahrain (with Lance Stroll) and he’ll receive the same punishment for Baku after a clumsy collision on the opening lap in Canada. 100% Sainz’s fault as he cut Grosjean off. Remember Sainz, Ferrari won’t like that behavior!

Daniil Kvyat – 6/10

Bad luck just doesn’t end for Daniil Kvyat. He just couldn’t escape problems in the Canadian Grand Prix and consequently his race was pretty terrible. After the issue on the start had him on the back foot from the get-go, a pitstop error on lap 54 ultimately ended what always looked to be a dismal day for Dany Kvyat.

Stoffel Vandoorne – 7/10

It was a pretty uneventful day for Stoffel Vandoorne. Although his McLaren somehow finished the race, he was in a pretty lowly P14, with only Pascal Wehrlein behind him. In his PR, he explained that McLaren had to work extremely hard with the fuel as well as come up with new ways to keep cars behind him… It just doesn’t look or sound good for McLaren.

Fernando Alonso – 8/10

Like Vandoorne, Alonso’s race was less than eventful. He expertly avoided the lap one Sainz and Massa’s first lap incident and from there on in proceeded to run a pretty standard race. He was running in an extremely promising P10 by the end of it, and unfortunately for both him and McLaren, his power unit gave way just four laps from the end. Although it’s just ‘another failure’, this one could be crucial as it cost McLaren a World Championship point; something they sorely need at the moment.

Nico Hulkenberg – 7/10

Nico Hulkenberg brought home more points for Renault in the Canadian Grand Prix with a well-deserved P8 finish. Notably, he took a set of supersoft tires from lap 11 all the way to the finish, which is more than impressive tire wear, especially considering Renault’s apparent race pace problem they suffered earlier in the season. Hulkenberg commented post race that the continued points finishes for Renault is very much a “positive.”

Jolyon Palmer – 8/10

Jolyon Palmer’s performance certainly increased in Canada, but was it satisfactory enough for the fans of Formula 1 who have been calling for Robert Kubica to replace him? The Briton finished the rather uneventful race in P11, describing the position post-race as “frustrating,” considering he’s so close to points.

Romain Grosjean – 10/10

Romain Grosjean’s race looked to be completely over after lap 1 when he was simply in the wrong place at the wrong time with Carlos Sainz. But, after miraculously keeping his Haas out of the barriers, Grosjean beautifully recovered the race by taking a set of supersofts from lap 1 to the chequered flag. He snapped up the final points paying spot when Fernando Alonso’s McLaren inevitably broke down…

Kevin Magnussen – 7/10

Ultimately, Kevin Magnussen’s decision to run the supersoft tires in the opening stint didn’t pay off for him as he finished in a lowly P12. His race wasn’t helped by a penalty for overtaking under the virtual-safety-car, which he slammed the stewards for, post-race. He was running in 10th at the time, making this a ‘what could’ve been’ race.

Marcus Ericsson – 7/10

Honestly, what can I actually say for Marcus Ericsson? Sauber, and McLaren for that matter too, are almost in a completely different class to everyone else. Ericsson finished the Canadian Grand Prix in P13, ahead of only Stoffel Vandoorne and team mate Wehrlein. Good work I guess? At least they got to the line, considering the reliability demands of the circuit.

Pascal Wehrlein – 6/10

With the ensuing chaos at the start of the Canadian Grand Prix, Pascal Wehrlein’s decision to run the supersoft looked promising as the subsequent safety-car awarded him a free stop. But, something didn’t click and Wehrlein just couldn’t make any progress through the field. There wasn’t an easily explainable reason for this, and he admitted post-race: “We (Sauber) have to make sure that we understand the reason for that.”

Be sure to tell us in the comments whether or not you agree with our ratings!

By – Steven Walton

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