The 2016 Max Verstappen Demolition Derby, er, Belgian Grand Prix, is in the books and while another Mercedes unsurprisingly won the race [this time, in the form of Nico Rosberg], the real drama came in watching Dutch teenager Max Verstappen channeling all his teenager hormones into one race as he temporarily took both Ferraris out of the race on the first turn and then generally wreaked havoc throughout the race with his Pastor Maldonado-esque driving. His Red Bull teammate, Daniel Ricciardo, was able to avoid all of Junior’s silliness, to come in second place and somehow, Rosberg’s Mercedes teammate, Lewis Hamilton, was able to dodge and weave through all the crashes and Verstappen to claw his way back to the podium in third after starting at the back of the field due to engine penalties.
AutoSportsNation awards top points to Rosberg for the uncluttered victory, second place to Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel, who finished sixth after being clobbered by his Ferrari teammate, Kimi Raikkonen, in the first turn after Raikkonen was hit and pushed wide by Verstappen. Third place goes to Hamilton for his obstacle course driving skills.
The Pastor Maldonado Driving School Award unquestionably goes to Verstappen, who put in the most Maldonado-like performance since Daniil Kvyat was behind a Red Bull wheel. Verstappen had at least three Maldonado incarnations – at the first turn when he instigated the Ferrari collision, then later when he ran Raikkonen off a corner and finally with braking and moving in mid-straight in a blocking maneuver to avoid being overtaken by Raikkonen.
The Kimi Raikkonen “Leave Me Alone! I Know What I’m Doing” Award has to, once again, go to Raikkonen himself for one of his reactions after tangling with Verstappen – “Do I have to let the Red Bull past? Because clearly his only interest is pushing me off the circuit completely.” No, Kimi, in our book, you do not have to let him past and you can run him off all the way to Algeria from now on. You get a season-long free pass from ASN on that.
The Lewis Hamilton Doofus Moment Award goes to Verstappen for not only not apologizing for any of his on-course antics but shrugging them off afterwards in pure teenager style.
2016 ASN F1 Driver Standings [After Belgian Grand Prix]
1] Nico Rosberg – 22 points
2] Lewis Hamilton – 19
3] Sebastian Vettel – 10
4] Kimi Raikkonen – five
5] Max Verstappen – four
6] Fernando Alonso/Sergio Perez/Daniel Ricciardo – three
9] Jenson Button/Carlos Sainz, Jr. – two points
11] Valtteri Bottas/Romain Grosjean/Nico Hulkenberg/Daniil Kvyat/Stoffel Vandoorne – one
The Pastor Maldonado Driving School Award [after Belgian Grand Prix]
1] Rosberg – three points
2] Kvyat – two
3] Alonso/Bottas/Hamilton/Hulkenberg/Palmer/Raikkonen/Verstappen/Wehrlein – one
The Kimi Raikkonen “Leave Me Alone! I Know What I’m Doing!” Award [after Belgian Grand Prix]
1] Raikkonen – three points
2] Hamilton/Ricciardo/Vettel – two
5] Button/Kvyat/Rosberg/Wehrlein – one
The Lewis Hamilton Doofus Moment Award [after Belgian Grand Prix]
1] Bernie Ecclestone/Hamilton – three points
3] Braziliann kidnappers/F1 stewards/Force India pit [Perez]/Mercedes/Red Bull pit [Ricciardo]/Renault pit [Palmer]/Verstappen – one