The Jury’s verdict: Max ends season voted top, Hamilton tactics endorsed by fans

 

verstappen-2016-brazil

PART 3 – Brought to you by TJ13 contributor @F1TheaJ

With the new season looming fast, we look back to last season and see how the TJ13 Jury rated 2016 in a 3 part series.

READ PART 1

READ PART 2

 

Race 15, Singapore: Rank: 12/21 Score: 6.77 Driver of the weekend: Sebastian Vettel (5th)

Well, well, well, the tradition of Singapore did continue after all (not that we knew it at the time.) Namely this race has only ever been won (in its 8 years standing) by a driver who has also won a WDC title. This year was no exception as Rosberg won the race and went on to win the championship (although at the time he was the first non WDC to lift the winner’s trophy at Singapore.) The most successful driver at this track is Sebastian Vettel, having won four of the previous eight races, but having not made it past Q1 (due to a broken rollbar) his chances of even making it to the podium looked pretty slim. However, starting from the back didn’t deter him as he cut a swathe through the field, taking second place and winning our driver of the day accolade in to the bargain. Rosberg back in the lead in the Driver standings.

Race 16, Malaysia: Rank: 4/21 Score: 7.82 Driver of the weekend: Max Verstappen (2nd)

A race of two halves. Vettel retired after colliding with Verstappen, sending Rosberg into a spin at the start, Hamilton’s engine burst into flames and a scrap between the two Red Bull drivers brought memories of the infamous ‘multi 21’ incident from 2013 flooding back. Hamilton’s engine failure saw the race yellow flagged and Red Bull took advantage and brought both drivers in for new tyres. This effectively gave Ricciardo a three second lead over Verstappen which saw Ricciardo take his first win of the season. Rosberg clambered his way back through the field to take third place and consolidate his lead at the top of the Driver standings.

Race 17, Japan: Rank: 11/21 Score: 6.97 Driver of the weekend: Max Verstappen (2nd)

More controversy over Verstappen’s driving style: it’s that old defending/blocking theme again but this time it was Hamilton on the receiving end (and Mercedes putting in a complaint). Hamilton got off to what was possibly his worst start of the season, but made his way back through the field as the race progressed. He chased down Verstappen towards the end of the race but was outwitted by the youngster at every turn (literally and metaphorically) until the chicane on L52 when, by his own admission, Max waited to see what Hamilton was going to do before making his move (hence the controversy.) Meanwhile at the front Rosberg cruised to another victory, expanding his points lead over his closest rival, Hamilton. Mercedes won the Constructor championship.

Race 18, USA: Rank: 16/21 Score: 5.80 Driver of the weekend: Fernando Alonso (5th)

Not the most thrilling race of the season, but it did offer moments of entertainment (not least of which Ferrari releasing Raikonnen with a gun still attached to his wheel). Probably the highlight of the race was the battle between Sainz, Massa and Alonso for fifth place, resulting in Alonso being voted our Driver of the weekend. Hamilton won the race, so reducing Rosberg’s points lead to 26.

Race 19, Mexico: Rank: 15/21 Score: 6.22 Driver of the weekend: Max Verstappen (4th)

Well there was a kerfuffle at the beginning of this race and another one at the end, resulting in Vettel becoming the first victim to fall foul of the newly introduced ‘Verstappen Rule’ after an incident involving Vettel (who was being backed into the chasing Ricciardo by Verstappen) and Ricciardo. To cut a long story short, Verstappen came third but was demoted to fourth due to a five second penalty promoting Vettel to third, who was then demoted to fifth due to a 10 second penalty, promoting Ricciardo to third (even though he didn’t know about it until after the podium ceremony.) Hamilton won, Rosberg came second.

Race 20, Brazil: Rank: 3/21 Score: 8.03 Driver of the weekend: Max Verstappen (3rd)

You considered this to be the best race of the second half of the season and the third best race overall and not without good reason. This was a wet race which started under safety car conditions and had several yellow and red flags. Most of the race took place behind the safety car and it was touch and go whether the race would reach 75% to have full points allocated. HOWEVER the last 14 laps saw Verstappen put on a scintillating display of wet weather driving which left experienced commentators struggling to find appropriate superlatives to describe his overtaling. I’ll settle for gobsmacking. Needless to say, Max won our Driver of the weekend accolade, but not, sadly, the race, which was won by Hamilton, further reducing Rosberg’s lead in the Championship race. A very significant ninth place for Filipe Nasr gained two points for Sauber, which pushed them ahead of Manor in the Constructor standings. Manor’s participation in the 2017 season is as yet unconfirmed.

Race 21, Abu Dhabi: Rank: 9/21 Score: 7.10 Driver of the Weekend: Lewis Hamilton (1st)

Final race of the season, so would it be Hamilton (again) or Rosberg (for the first time) who would lift the Championship trophy? Well, Hamilton took pole and drove slowly (extremely slowly at points) throughout the race and on the last lap controversially tried to back Rosberg into the charging Vettel (who looked as if he may have won his first race of the season.) Slow coach tactics failed and Rosberg won the Championship anyway and promptly retired from F1.

That’s all folks!!

Summary of mean reader scores for each race:

Race

Mean reader Score (/10)

Rank (/21)

Spain

8.65

1

Austria

8.15

2

Brazil

8.03

3

Malaysia

7.82

4

China

7.77

5

Monaco

7.49

6

Spa

7.28

7

Australia

7.26

8

Abu Dhabi

7.10

9

Bahrain

7.04

10

Japan

6.97

11

Singapore

6.77

12

Britain

6.72

13

Canada

6.57

14

Mexico

6.22

15

USA

5.8

16

Germany

5.37

17

Russia

5.24

18

Azerbaijan

4.78

19

Hungary

4.63

20

Monza

4.3

21

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s