2022 Australian Grand Prix Formula 1 driver ratings RaceFans

The Australian Grand Prix saw a comfortable victory for one Ferrari driver and a bitterly disappointing retirement for the other.

Further down the field, one Williams driver struggled to make an impact, while the other secured the team’s best result of the young season. While at Aston Martin, it proved to be a weekend to forget for everyone in the team.

Here are RaceFans’ driver ratings for the Australian Grand Prix:

George Russell, Mercedes, Albert Park, 2022
Russell took this first Mercedes podium

Lewis Hamilton- 6

Qualified: 5th (+1 above team mate)
Finished: 4th (-1 below team mate)

  • Frustrated to be so far off the pace despite “decent laps” in practice
  • Secured fifth on the grid ahead of team mate in final Q3 effort
  • Jumped to third at the start before being passed by Perez
  • Dropped behind Russell under Safety Car as he had already pitted
  • Overheating issues forced him to lift-and-coast, preventing him from challenging Russell

George Russell- 6

Qualified: 6th (-1 below team mate)
Finished: 3rd (+1 above team mate)

  • Just out-qualified by Hamilton by only a tenth
  • Passed Norris at start and ran within two seconds of Hamilton in early phase
  • Perfectly timed Safety Car allowed him to pit and keep third
  • Lost third to Perez after being told to prioritize his tires over track position
  • Inherited a podium after Verstappen’s retirement and led home an overheating Hamilton to finish third

Max Verstappen – 7

Qualified: 2nd (+1 above team mate)
Finished: Retired (Fuel system – L39)

  • Struggled with balance in high speed throughout practice
  • Qualified second, almost three tenths behind Leclerc
  • Graining mediums frustrated his efforts to chase Leclerc
  • Put Leclerc under pressure at second restart but could not find a way past
  • Forced to stop after a fuel system problem on lap 39

Sergio Perez – 6

Qualified: 3rd (-1 below team mate)
Finished: 2nd

  • Quicker than Verstappen in two of the three practice sessions
  • Qualified third, less than a tenth behind team mate
  • Dropped to fourth behind Hamilton on lap one
  • Small mistake at turn 13 on lap 50 cost him two seconds
  • Finished a lonely second after his team mate’s retirement
Charles Leclerc, Ferrari, Albert Park, 2022
Leclerc took a comfortable win

Carlos Sainz Jnr – 3

Qualified: 9th (-8 below team mate)
Finished: Retired (Spun off – L2)

  • Fastest in first practice and generally kept pace with team mate in practice and first two qualifying sessions
  • Lost his first Q3 lap due to red flag, then delayed by starter problem allowing him only one Q3 effort
  • Mistake in turn ten left him ninth on the grid
  • Steering wheel issue before race led to anti-stall at start, dropping him to 14th
  • Spun out at turn ten trying too hard to make back places

Charles Leclerc – 8

Qualified: Pole (+8 above team mate)
Finished: Winner

  • Consistently in the top three in practice and qualifying
  • Took pole by almost three tenths
  • Held onto lead at start and fended off Verstappen on second Safety Car restart
  • Controlled the race from the front
  • Took a dominant win after leading every lap with the fastest lap

Lando Norris – 7

Qualified: 4th (+3 above team mate)
Finished: 5th (+1 above team mate)

  • Quickest in final practice
  • Qualified fourth as ‘best of the rest’, three tenths quicker than team mate
  • Follow to sixth at start
  • Passed Magnussen after Safety Car and led Ricciardo home even after managing late fuel scare
  • Finished every single session of weekend faster than team mate

Daniel Ricciardo – 6

Qualified: 7th (-3 below team mate)
Finished: 6th (-1 below team mate)

  • Slower than Norris in all practice and qualifying sessions
  • Qualified three tenths and three places behind his team mate in seventh
  • Spent almost every lap directly behind team mate and followed him by Magnussen
  • Respected team’s orders not to pressure Norris in final three lapses
  • Finished sixth to secure best result of season
Fernando Alonso, Alpine, Albert Park, 2022
Alonso’s qualifying crash compromised his weekend

Fernando Alonso- 7

Qualified: 10th (-2 below team mate)
Finished: 17th (-10 below team mate)

  • Showed exceptional pace from Friday afternoon onwards
  • Crashed in Q3 after a hydraulic problem, leaving him tenth on the grid
  • Started on the hard tire to run long opening stint where he kept pace with team mate Ocon
  • Frustrated by two Safety Cars allowing rivals to pit with reduced time loss
  • Pitted under VSC but had to pit again after medium tires degraded in the midfield train, finishing 17th

Esteban Ocon – 5

Qualified: 8th (+2 above team mate)
Finished: 7th (+10 above team mate)

  • Qualified 8th after admitting he had not had the “smoothest” of sessions
  • Ran eighth in the early lapse, building up a train behind him
  • Could not find a way by Albon’s Williams for second half the race despite much fresher hard tires
  • Inherited seventh after Albon pitted on final lap

Pierre Gasly – 5

Pierre Gasly, Alpha Tauri, Albert Park, 2022
Gasly’s slip-up let Bottas by

Qualified: 11th (+2 above team mate)
Finished: 9th (+6 above team mate)Hello?

  • Missed out on Q3 by a tenth of a second
  • Moved up two places to ninth at the start
  • Ran behind Ocon until pitting just before Safety Car, dropping to 13th
  • Rose to ninth after VSC and spent nine laps behind Stroll before passing him on lap 50
  • Lost ninth to Bottas after running off at turn 13, but gained it back when Albon pitted on final lap

Yuki Tsunoda – 4

Qualified: 13th (-2 below team mate)
Finished: 15th (-6 below team mate)

  • Reprimanded for impeding Sainz in second practice
  • Apologized for compromising team mate’s Q2 lap after going off at turn 11, qualifying 13th
  • Gained two places at start and ran 11th until pitting on lap 18
  • Lost places to Schumacher and Zhou after Safety Car restart, then passed by Magnussen
  • Struggled for pace on hard tires and finished 15th

Sebastian Vettel – 2

Qualified: 18th
Finished: Retired (Crashed – L23)

  • Pulled off track with power unit problem in first practice session of the season, preventing him from taking part in second practice
  • Crashed during his first timed lap on Saturday morning, almost preventing his participation in qualifying
  • Qualified 18th with last minute lap attempt
  • Dropped to last after running off onto gravel at turn 11 on lap 10
  • Crashed out of the race after losing control at turn four on lap 23
Lance Stroll, Aston Martin, Albert Park, 2022
Stroll picked up multiple penalty points over the weekend

Lance Stroll- 2

Qualified: No time set
Finished: 12th

  • Investigated twice for impeding in practice but cleared
  • Crashed at turn 11 at end of third practice
  • Failed to set a time in Q1 after hitting Latifi, handed three place grid drop
  • Ran last in early lapse after pitting twice to satisfy two-compound requirement
  • Passed Albon and Bottas either side of pitting under Safety Car
  • Given five second time penalty for weaving in defense of 14th from Bottas, then appeared to push him off track at turn three, but not investigated
  • Passed three times in final ten lapses to finish 12th

Nicholas Latifi – 4

Qualified: 19th (-3 below team mate)
Finished: 16th (-6 below team mate)

  • Slower than Albon in all three practice sessions
  • Qualifying ended early after collision with Stroll, deemed not at fault
  • Ran ahead of team mate in early lapse before early pit stop
  • Pitted again under second Safety Car from last
  • Ran last almost the whole race after struggling with graining before crossing line 16th
Alex Albon, Williams, Albert Park, 2022
Albon made excellent use of his strategy

Alexander Albon – 8

Qualified: 16th (+3 above team mate)
Finished: 10th (+6 above team mate)

  • Consistently quicker than team mate Latifi in practice and qualifying
  • Missed out on Q2 by half a tenth
  • Would have started 19th with grid penalty but was disqualified from qualifying for fuel sample issue
  • Ran 18th at start but gained places as drivers pitted ahead of him
  • Maintained impressive pace on hard tires for entire race before pitting on final lap
  • Emerged just in front of Zhou and pulled away to claim first point in tenth

Valtteri Bottas – 6

Qualified: 12th (+2 above team mate)
Finished: 8th (+3 above team mate)

  • Missed out on Q3, ending 103 race streak of reaching the final phase, qualifying 12th
  • Ran 12th before passing Tsunoda before pitting the lap before the second Safety Car
  • Fell to 13th after being passed by Stroll before eventually passing him on lap 51
  • Gained ninth from Gasly’s turn 13 error, then took eighth after Albon’s late pit stop

Zhou Guanyu – 5

Qualified: 14th (-2 below team mate)
Finished: 11th (-3 below team mate)

  • Slower than Bottas in every practice and qualifying session
  • Lost place to Schumacher at the start, gained it back following mistake
  • Passed by Magnussen for 12th before pit stop, then lost places under Safety Car, putting him almost last
  • Passed Tsunoda, gained 13th after passing Schumacher, then passed struggling Alonso for 12th
  • Came close to passing Albon out of the pit lane but could not find traction at turn two, missing out on a point

Mick Schumacher – 4

Mick Schumacher, Haas, Albert Park, 2022
Neither of the Haas drivers scored points

Qualified: 15th (+2 above team mate)
Finished: 13th (+1 above team mate)

  • Reached Q2 a tenth-and-a-half ahead of team mate
  • Gained two places at the start, but lost them after a mistake at turn 11
  • Nearly hit Tsunoda during a Safety Car period, then passed him after it
  • Overtaken by Alonso, then ran wide at turn one trying to repass the Alpine, losing two places
  • Passed team mate Magnussen in closing time to secure 14th

Kevin Magnussen – 4

Qualified: 17th (-2 below team mate)
Finished: 14th (-1 below team mate)

  • Felt unwell on Friday but put in a full program
  • Eliminated in Q1 for first time in 2022
  • Passed Zhou but lost the position after mistake at turn nine attacking Tsunoda
  • Fell to rear after pitting under Virtual Safety Car, passed Latifi, Tsunoda, Schumacher and Alonso to run 12th
  • Passed by team mate in closing time, finishing 14th

Over to you

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