Hello and happy new year. Hope you have a nice cup of Yorkshire tea ready to read this we are going to review each driver’s performance in the 2021 season. I’m going to do this using my expected position metric detailed here
The drivers are ranked by the % of races they had a positive result. This could be the most controversial post I ever do so let’s go!
20. Nikita Mazipane – 0%
Not much to say here he never had 1 race where he finished above expected. Let’s move on
19. Nicholas Latifi – 6.25%
So Latifi has at least one race where he finished above what would be expected of him. However, when you look at the races one is the Hungarian GP which was a crazy race with several runners taken out by Bottas and Stroll. Also the other positive is the Belgian Grand Prix which wasn’t even a race.
18. Yuki Tsunoda 11.7%
Tsunoda is a very lucky guy to keep his seat. He scored in most races 40 points less than expected and there doesn’t seem to be much improvement throughout the year. He can be happy with his final race performance which was excellent but other than that it’s not been great. He will definitely need to improve in the new season if he is to keep his seat.
17. Antonio Giovinazzi – 15%
Comparing his performances across his 3 seasons in F1 unfortunately he couldn’t maintain his performance from his second year and there was a drop off in 2021. In 2020 he managed a 57% positive which is an average driver.
16. George Russell – 26.6%
The first controversial ranking
This is maybe caused by the biggest flaw in the model. It biases drivers who perform better in races than qualifying. I think there is a big uncertainty about how Russell will perform in the Mercedes. Will he be another Jarno Trulli or is he the real deal. Going to be interesting to find out.
15. Mick Schumacher 27.7%
A respectable if unspectacular first season for Schumacher. He had a difficult car we will see how he does in the coming season.
14. Sebastien Vettle 37.5%
A pretty average season for Vettel with a good period after the first 4 races settling in. However, he was well beaten by his teammate. This season also continued his apparent decline and was his second worse performance of his career with last year being the worst.
13. Sergio Perez 38.8%
Checo’s performance this year is slightly below his historical average of around 55% however this is because of how good Verstappen is. The score is also affected by his use in the title fight and being sacrificed for Verstappen
12. Estaban Ocon 44.4%
Estaban Ocon actually delivered the best performance according to the model across the whole year. That was his race win in Hungary which there was a lot of luck involved. He also had a really strong finish to the season as Alpine did in general which shows the team possibly got a better understanding of their car.
11 Charles Leclerc 47.36%
A pretty average season for Leclerc and actually his worst performance in F1 since he joined according to this metric. This is an interesting one as in his first two seasons he operated at about 75% positive results which is the level the best drivers operate at. Last season he was at 53% and this season 47% which is pretty average. If he wants to compete with Verstappen and Hamilton he needs to be operating at around 75%
That’s the first 10 drivers next week I’ll cover 10 – 1 spoiler there’s no surprise who is first.