Tag Archives: Jean-Eric Vergne

Korean GP dull by any stretch of the imagination

14 Oct

Good day, Bad day Korea 12.

Good day:

Sebastian Vettel: 9/10 S2 F1

Was unlucky to be pipped to pole by Webber but after overtaking at turn 1 no one could hold a candle to him, he led all the way from the front and was by far the best driver out there finishing 1st but more importantly taking control of the drivers championship.

Felipe Massa: 8/10 S6 F4

Massa is fantastic with him timing to turn his season around, he put in a fantastic performance for Ferrari last weekend and today was yet again very quick, so quick he had to be told to slow down in case he overtook Alonso. Despite a poor start to the season it’s looking likely that Massa will get the contract for 2013.

Nico Hulkenburg: 9/10 S8 F6 #DriverOfTheDay

Nico had a great race today picking up another important 8 points, he drove very well fending off Grosjean for the first and second stints before being overtaken at the start of the 3rd, but whilst Grosjean and Hamilton fought for 7th Hulkenburg overtook them both to finish 6th.

Jean-Eric Vergne: 8/10 S16 F8

Toro Rosso have been strong in Korea over the last few years but Vergne put in one of the best drives of the day to rise from 16th to 8th overtaking Lewis Hamilton in the process. Vergne hasn’t had the best of seasons but if he can drive like this on a regular basis he could move to Red Bull in the next few years.

Bad Day:

Lewis Hamilton: 3/10 S3 F10

When your McLaren can’t keep up with Toro Rosso you know you’re doing something wrong, Hamilton started poorly losing out to Alonso at turn 2, before spending the second stint being overtaken by Massa, Raikkonen, Hulkenburg etc. One of the biggest surprises about Hamilton’s race was just how quickly he went through tyres which he did remarkably quickly, Hamilton’s race was livened up later on by the addition of astroturf to the car.

Mercedes: 4/10 MSC S10 F13 ROS S9 F ret.

Mercedes have really struggled in recent weeks and did again this weekend, they were the slowest Mercedes powered car and were slower than the majority of the midfield.

Kamui Kobayashi: 3/10 S13 F ret.

It was a short but awful race for Kamui, he hit Button on lap 1 forcing JB to retire and and then ran in last after a drive-through and a front wing change. Kamui retired from the race on lap 16.

Fans who got up early to watch the race:

The race can be summed up as 5 minutes of excitement padded out with 95 minutes of processional racing, worth watching the 10 minute highlights than the entire race.

Korean Astroturf fitters

Whoever it was who put down the astroturf may be about to find themselves out of business because it was a pretty poor job. The turf was ripped up around the outside of the track which resulted in Hamilton getting some stuck to the side of the car and leading to a string of grass/turf jokes.

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Pastor Maldonado crashes out, again.

9 Jul

Driver Ratings, GB 12, Pt.4, Sauber, Toro Rosso and Williams.

Kamui Kobayashi: 7/10 Q12 S17 F11

Kamui has been under the radar so far this season, but he been one of the strongest drivers of the year, despite having less points than his younger team mate. Kamui started his race spectacularly  and was running 12th after just 3 laps (which made up for his 5 place grid penalty he was given after causing a collision in Valencia. During the second stint Kobayashi was running up in 9th, but he came out of the second pit session worse off in 12th and if Hulkenburg hadn’t spun on the final lap he wouldn’t have finished 11th. If Kobayashi hadn’t had the penalty and had started 12th he’d have definitely have finished in the points.

Sergio Perez: 8/10 Q17 S15 F ret.

In my opinion there is no doubt that Sergio would have finished in the points had his race not ended prematurely when Maldonado hit him. Sergio was unlucky on saturday in qualifying, a big error saw him not go out after the red flags and Sergio dramatically drop from 1st to 17th. But this singled Sergio out as the F1F man to watch. It was an astonishing start for Sergio, in the first lap alone he flew to 9th place and then overtook Senna for 8th position, but Pastor Maldonado then struck, colliding with Perez to end Sergio’s race. Full marks for Sergio to speaking his mind after the race as apposed to preaching the PR.

Daniel Ricciardo: 6/10 Q14 S12 F13

Daniel has fallen back since his early season successes, but in recent weeks the Toro Rosso has fallen to the back of the midfield. Ricciardo had a very slow start, falling from 12th to 17th on the first lap alone but he stuck at it and he finished off his race by overtaking team mate Vergne in the final laps.

Jean-Eric Vergne: 6/10 Q16 S23 F14

This year’s Toro Rosso line up is widely regarded to decide who will replace Mark Webber when he leaves, and if the first nine race of this season are anything to go by it will be Daniel not Jean-Eric joining Red Bull. Despite qualifying in 16th Jean-Eric had to start from 23rd after a 10 place grid penalty for causing a collision at the European GP but he didn’t stay there long, ,moving back up to 16th on the first lap. It was the timing of the second pit stop that let Vergne finish 14th, his pit stop was earlier than most which helped him to 13th before a he was overtaken by Ricciardo late on.

Pastor Maldonado: 2/10 Q7 S7 F16

Maldonado received the hatred of the public again this weekend for colliding with Sergio Perez, this is one of many collisions Pastor has caused this year with many fans calling for him to have his license recalled.

Bruno Senna: 7/10 Q15 S13 F9

Bruno has struggled in the Williams car so far this season and it was a disappointing qualifying for the young Brazilian, but Senna threw himself into points contention at the start of the race, running 9th early on. But he didn’t have a good first pit stop session coming out back in 11th, but by going for a short second stint Senna was able to move back to 10th and in the points and it was because of the pressure Bruno applied that Nico Hulkenburg span out of the points on the last lap.

Bruno Senna was down, but not out.

25 Jun

Picture courtesy of formulaone.com

Driver Ratings Europe 12, Pt. 4, Sauber, Toro Rosso and Williams

Kamui Kobayashi: 7/10 Q7 F ret.

It was a promising weekend for Kobayashi, reaching Q3 and starting 7th, and Kamui performed well from the start to run in 4th. But unlucky timing saw Kamui having to pit twice before the safety car car came out, despite this Kobayashi looked like he could still pick up a good points finish before Kobayashi collided with Massa forcing Kobayashi to retire and meaning Kamui has a 5 place grid penalty for the British GP.

Sergio Perez: 7/10 Q15 F9

Couldn’t match Kobayashi’s pace in qualifying starting four rows further back on the grid, and things didn’t go well from the start. Sergio was running on the same strategy as Kamui Kobayashi with two pit stops before the safety car came out, but unlike Kamui Perez managed to finish the race, finishing in 9th after a late charge.

Daniel Ricciardo: 6/10 Q17 F11

Ricciardo was one of the more aggressive drivers  of the race, colliding with Petrov, and although Ricciardo was largely unaffected Petrov really struggled. Most impressively about Ricciardo was that he was running 4th when the safety car came out. Ricciardo was set for 12th until Maldonado received a 20 second penalty to promote Daniel to 11th.

Jean-Eric Vergne: 6/10 Q18 F ret.

It was a short lived race for Jean-Eric, before a collision with Heikki Kovalainen forced Vergne to retire and brought out the safety car. Vergne was later punished with a 10 place grid penalty for the British GP for this collision.

Pastor Maldonado: 4/10 Q3 F12

I was amazed when Maldonado went 3rd fastest in Q3, but Maldonado struggled at the start of the race he lost two places early on, and it looked like he’d struggle. But he charged forwards near the end before hitting Hamilton whilst rejoining the track. Pastor was given a 20 second penalty for this, demoting him from 10th to 12th.

Bruno Senna: 7/10 Q14 F10

Again Senna was disappointing in qualifying, and started the race extremely unlucky, first he collided with Kobayashi forcing him to pit for a new front wing, and then the stewards – wrongly (in my opinion) – found him guilty for the accident and gave him a drive thru penalty, this left Senna a distant last. But once the safety car returned to the pits Bruno drove exceptionally to rise to 11th, this was promoted to 10th when Maldonado was given a 20 second penalty.

Picture courtesy of formulaone.com

 

Driver Ratings, Monaco 12, Pt.4 Sauber, Toro Rosso and Williams

27 May

Sergio Perez: 6/10 Q24 S23 F11

He was unlucky in qualifying to not manage a lap after a broken steering system gave him a close encounter with the wall. But he did Sauber proud in the race to finish only 1 place off the points. He moved up 8 places in his first stint and then another 7 in the second stint. A good performance by Checo.

Kamui Kobayashi: 5/10 Q12 S11 F ret.

It was a good performance in qualifying but his race was a disaster, would you believe it he pitted twice in the 5 laps he was competing before retiring with damage from an accident at the first corner which saw the Sauber almost entering space.

Daniel Ricciardo: 5/10 Q16 S15 F ret.

Toro Rosso have fallen a long way since they’re competitive streak at the start of the season. He started the race well and was 7th before his pit stop. But Daniel had fallen after that and was only 14th when disaster struck and the steering failed on lap 65.

Jean-Eric Vergne: 7/10 Q17 S16 F12

Jean-Eric should have picked up 6 points today, but a disastrous decision to bring him in for wet tyres put an end to that and ruined what was set to be Vergne’s best weekend.

Pastor Maldonado: 3/10 Q9 S24 F ret.

It’s very easy to forget how Pastor won in Spain when he puts in performances like he did this weekend. He was way too aggressive in FP3 and was luck not to get more than his 10 place grid penalty, and then he got another 5 place grid penalty for a gearbox change. If he thought the race was going to be a better story he was wrong, retiring on lap 1 due to an accident.

Bruno Senna: 7/10 Q14 S13 F10

Maybe not the 7th Senna victory in Monaco but it was a good effort by Bruno to pick up another point. Bruno will no doubt be delighted that Toro Rosso ruined Vergne’s race as his pit stop was the act that moved Senna from 11th to a points position.

Driver Ratings, Spain 12, Pt.4 Sauber, Toro Rosso and Williams

13 May

Kamui Kobayashi: 8/10 Q10 S9 F5

We had a return of the old overtaking Kobayashi today as he put in some textbook overtaking manoeuvres, especially over Nico Rosberg. Kobayashi did a great job today, profiting on the mistakes of the teams around him to keep Sauber in the hunt for a top 4 finish this year.

Sergio Perez: 7/10 Q6 S5 ret.

Sergio set a new record for his highest grid place today as he gets closer and closer to joining a big team. Sadly the race didn’t go well, he suffered a puncture on the first lap and was soon setting fastest laps on his new tyres, but sadly during the pit stops the rear right mechanic seemed to be putting more concentration into not falling over as apposed to tightening the wheel nut and this meant that he had to retire.

Daniel Ricciardo: 7/10 Q16 S15 F13

Ricciardo put another good race in today and he put in a no-nonesence performance to make the best of a car that is moving backwards. The Toro Rosso car has started the season strongly but in this weekend it hasn’t been a good week for them as they’ve performed poorly this weekend.

Jean-Eric Vergne: 7/10 Q15 S14 F12

Managed to out qualify team mate for the first time this season and put in a very strong race having tussles with both Massa and Hamilton. All the french drivers did well today and could be in for a great season.

Pastor Maldonado: 10/10 Q2 S1 F1 #DriverOfTheDay

What a weekend for Pastor to claim his first pole and win and to get Williams’ first victory since 2004. Pastor has at last managed to through away the veil of him being just a pay driver.

Bruno Senna: 6/10 Q18 S17 ret.

Bruno didn’t do well in qualifying but he was performing well in the race before he was taken out of the race by Schumacher.

After the race there was a big fire in the Williams garage rumoured to be caused by a KERS explosion injuring up to 7 mechanics. My thoughts are with the teams and their families at the moment.

Driver Ratings Bahrain Pt.4, Sauber, Toro Rosso and Williams

22 Apr

Kamui Kobayashi: 7/10 Q12 F13

Took a risky strategy starting on the medium tyres and sadly on this occasion it didn’t pay off his first stint wasn’t any longer than drivers who started on softs and after that point he was always on the back foot. In Kamui’s defence though the last 8 laps were by far his best, he rose from 17th to 13th to save some dignity today.

Sergio Perez: 6/10 Q8 F11

Yet again the young Mexican made it to Q3 and out-qualified his slightly more experienced team mate. But the race wasn’t up to the same scratch he fell to 11th before the first pit stop and although he did move up the order before having to pit again he wasn’t good enough to pick up any points.

Daniel Ricciardo: 6/10 Q6 F15

A-Ma-Zing in qualifying and to take a Toro Rosso to 6th on the grid is a super human effort. Sadly points aren’t given for qualifying and he started the race particularly poorly, after colliding with Kovalainen he was running 17th after only 1 lap. I believe that Daniel should have seriously considered pitting for a new wing at this point because he was never on the pace afterwards and it was probably the damage from that incident that caused that loss of speed.

Jean-Eric Vergne: 7/10 Q19 (S17) F14

Jean-Eric has come out of the weekend again looking better than Daniel but really Jean-Eric was just lucky for Daniel to have had his problems at the start. More importantly for J.E. he’s going to have to seriously improve on his qualifying pace as this was the second weekend in a row where he was knocked out in Q1.

Pastor Maldonado: 7/10 Q17 (S21) DNF

Pastor was unlucky not to finish but can I just say his spin that cause his retirement showed fantastic skill. To do a spin that is exactly 360 degrees with a wheel that’s punctured is an amazing feet of driver ability, and although it was the resultant puncture that caused his retirement the execution of the spin was equal to Torville and Dean. Pastor had had an amazing race up to that point he rose 6 places on the first lap and was probably a serious contender for points before the retirement.

Bruno Senna: 6/10 Q15 DNF

Not a good weekend for Williams, neither car was good enough to make Q3 and neither car made it to the end of the race. Bruno had a very strong start rising from 15th to 11th on the first lap but things didn’t carry on that well and before the retirement he was only expected to finish 14th.

3 winners and losers of qualifying, Bahrain 12

21 Apr

Winners:

Sebastian Vettel: I never thought I’d say this but I am genuinely delighted that ‘the finger’ is back and straighter than ever before. Now the season can really begin, 3 teams have taken pole in the first 4 races and the battle between Red Bull, McLaren and Mercedes will be tight this year. Even better than that between Q2 and Q3 I said that Red Bull look strong this weekend and I was proved right (which is a rarity).

Daniel Ricciardo: Daniel was fantastic to qualify in 6th and to have qualified only o.5 seconds behind Sebastian Vettel, a driver who in a few years could be Daniel’s team mate. Ricciardo has been strong so far this season and it now looks likely that he’ll pick up points tomorrow.

Heikki Kovalainen: Heikki drove exceptionally to make it to Q2 for the first team this year for the team and also the first time for the brand Caterham. This means he’ll be starting tomorrow ahead of 3 established team’s cars and because Heikki is such a good starter he could bring home a top 15 place this weekend.

Charles Pic: I know it’s top 3 and yes I can count that this is a 4th winner but I believe Charles believes a little praise for out-qualifying experienced team mate Timo Glock for the first time this season and by a good 0.3 seconds. Well done Charles.

Losers:

FOM: A bit petty aren’t they. Force India skipped FP2 to keep their team and drivers safe, yes safe. And so Bernie Ecklestone playing as always the big bad wolf decides he’s going to get back at them by not having the FOM footage show any of the Force India cars in Q3 to anger the sponsors. Well luckily it backfired as everyone noticed and Force India trended on twitter for a bit, just incase the sponsors are angry here’s a link to the Force India’s home page http://www.forceindiaf1.com/ .

Michael Schumacher: Not entirely his fault that he didn’t make it past Q1 but he’s not going to be happy with his performance especially seeing as Nico Rosberg qualified 5th. But Jaime Alguersuari said on 5live today that he wouldn’t rule out a Schumacher podium and so neither will I.

Jean-Eric Vergne: Two races two times Q1 has been his best. Not inly that but this weekend his team mate Daniel Ricciardo qualified up in 6th a full 13 places ahead. Jean-Eric’s season is going to need a boost if he’s to become the Red Bull world champion everyone tips him to be and so he’ll need a good race tomorrow.