The 2017 Chinese Grand Prix is officially in the books and that means we can update the AutoSportsNation Formula One driver rankings and various awards.
The race was won by Mercedes Lewis Hamilton who led from start-to-finish and was mostly unscathed in a race which was reminiscent of last year’s Mercedes domination. Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel was second but did not challenge for the win and third place went to Red Bull’s Max Verstappen, who essentially beat the few remaining drivers who could stay on the lead lap. Since there were no real driving skills exhibited for this race, we will award the points to reflect the blah finish it was – with Hamilton getting top points, followed by Vettel and Verstappen.
The race was mostly empty of driving shenanigans so the Pastor Maldonado Driving School Award goes to Sergio Perez of Force India, who nudged rookie Lance Stroll out of the race on the first lap – a mostly unremarkable maneuver but certainly Maldonado-esque in behavior.
The always heavily-contended Kimi Raikkonen “Leave Me Alone! I Know What I’m Doing” Award goes to Mercedes pit crew who briefly referred to new driver Valtteri Bottas as “Nico” [last year’s driver and world champion, Nico Rosberg]. Nice.
The newly renamed Bernie Ecclestone Doofus Award also goes to Mercedes – first, for the idea of even creating this self-aggrandizing photo shoot [see video below] and then not bothering to make sure red hat guy is out of the picture. Nice again. Good work, Mercedes.
2017 ASN Formula One Driver Rankings [After Chinese Grand Prix]
1] Sebastian Vettel – five
2] Lewis Hamilton – three
3] Valtteri Bottas – two
4] Esteban Ocon/Max Verstappen – one
2017 Pastor Maldonado Driving School Award [after Chinese Grand Prix]
1] Kevin Magnussen/Sergio Perez – one
2017 Kimi Raikkonen “Leave Me Alone! I Know What I’m Doing!” Award [after Chinese Grand Prix]
1] Mercedes pit [Bottas]/Red Bull pit [Verstappen] – one
2017 Bernie Ecclestone Doofus Award [after Chinese Grand Prix]
1] Australian Grand Prix officials/Mercedes marketing team – one