2018 F1 Race Rankings
- Drivers’ Champion: Lewis Hamilton
- Constructors’ Champions: Mercedes
- Golden Pineapple Kings: Brendon Hartley, Marcus Ericsson & Pierre Gasly (3)
- Dead Last Kings: Lace Stroll & Sergey Sirotkin (6)
- Most retirements: Azerbaijan GP (7)
Note: The US and Mexican Grand Prix’s are not ranked because I wasn’t able to watch them.
- Azerbaijan Grand Prix: Lewis Hamilton took a surprise victory in a race where it seemed his team-mate was gifted the win thanks to a well-timed pit-stop and Vettel ruining his tyres. Force India achieved their first podium of the season. The Red Bulls crashed into each other and several drivers lost good positions to reckless driving on the tight Azerbaijan track. Also, Williams broke out of the zero-points club after a dry spell at the start of the season.
- Austrian Grand Prix: Max Verstappen took a surprise victory in a race where both Mercedes cars were forced to retire due to technical difficulties. The Ferraris took the points lead in the constructors’ championship, Haas dropped McLaren down a peg and both Saubers landed on points. Many promising results also sadly ended because of technical difficulties and many drivers blundered good positions due to heavy tire degradation.
- British Grand Prix – Sebastian Vettel drove solidly and nabbed the victory from under Valtteri Bottas’s nose, who was going for a risky tyre strategy. There were two safety cars seen as Marcus Ericsson DRS’d his way to the tyre-barrier with Grosjean and Sainz ramming each other to another safety car session as soon as the first one ended. Williams blundered the weekend away but Lewis Hamilton fought his way back to a surprise second place despite being bumped off the track by Kimi Räikkönen (who finished 3rd).
- Australian Grand Prix: In the season opening race, Sebastian Vettel showed that Ferrari was going to fight seriously for the championship. The Haas team fumbled their pit-stops, losing their advantage and McLaren made a glorious return after the painstaking Honda years. An interesting view into the forth-coming season but not the most exciting race.
- German Grand Prix: Lewis Hamilton emerged victorious when rain hit the track late in the race. Drivers were reluctant to switch intermediates leading to Sebastian Vettel crashing out of the race with the safety car coming on track. A few decent battles and lots of technical retirements. Otherwise, quite a dull race.
- Singapore Grand Prix: Although the top-6 remained unchanged from start to finish, there were plenty of incidents down the line. Sergio Perez bulldozed both his own team-mate and Sergey Sirotkin. Sirotkin sandwiched Hartley. Grosjean also stupidly got himself a time-penalty fighting Sirotkin despite being ordered to let the race lead past.
- Shanghai Grand Prix: Daniel Ricciardo became the surprise victor after Vettel lost the lead of the race due to an incident with Max Verstappen. The Toro Rossos also collided with each other. An otherwise quite uneventful race.
- Bahrain Grand Prix: Sebastian Vettel also took a victory in the second race of the season, keeping Ferrari riding high despite a horrible accident in the pits which caused Kimi Räikkönen to retire. Toro Rosso’s Pierre Gasly also finished within the Top-5, making up for the team’s otherwise dismal start to the season with Honda. Marcus Ericsson also did good by scoring points for Sauber. An otherwise quite boring race.
- Italian Grand Prix: Lewis Hamilton took the victory thanks to a better pit-strategy which placed him solidly ahead poleman Kimi Räikkönen. We did see some good battling between Lewis and Kimi though. The safety car was released due to a crash at the start, Verstappen forced the second Mercedes off the track and Haas’s only point-scoring car was disqualified after the race, thus giving Williams their first double points of the season. Lots of collisions, sadly not a lot of racing.
- Belgian Grand Prix: Sebastian Vettel slipped past pole-starter Hamilton at the start and kept that position for the rest of the race. Valtteri Bottas made a daring rise from the back and Marcus Ericsson defended himself against the combined might of Toro Rosso and Renault. A crash on the first lap took out Fernado Alonso, Charles Leclerc and Nico Hülkenberg immediately, and eventually Kimi Räikkönen and Daniel Ricciardo. Not much overtaking for the rest of the race though.
- Abu Dhabi Grand Prix: Lewis Hamilton achieved another easy victory with not even his team-mate giving him any challenge. Nico Hülkenberg was involved in a scary accident with his car being flipped upside-down. The race also ended very sadly for a number of drivers who will not be seen next year.
- Brazilian Grand Prix: The race victory was almost sealed for Max Verstappen by Mercedes’ poor tyre strategy when an impact with Ocon allowed Lewis Hamilton to take the race victory. Max went on to have hissyfit which landed him serious penalties. On-track we had Kimi Räikkönen’s third podium in a row leading out the series and some unfortunate bump ins ruining the race for Nico Hülkenberg and Marcus Ericsson.
- Spanish Grand Prix: Lewis Hamilton took an easy double victory for Mercedes after Ferrari screwed up Vettel’s pit-stop. Grosjean took out two other racers in an accident. Rest of the retirements were due to technical difficulties. All around a disappointingly dull race.
- French Grand Prix: Lewis Hamilton had an easy time winning when Sebastian Vettel took himself and Valtteri Bottas out of the running. In the first race in France in 10 years, we saw the Force Indias out of the race after Pierre Gasly’s fumble and the McLarens accomplished nothing.
- Russian Grand Prix: We saw a little bit of action on-track, but the centre of the attention was the super-awkward team order situation which ensured Lewis Hamilton’s victory. Toro Rosso had a rotten day with both of their cars dropping out at the start.
- Japanese Grand Prix: Lewis Hamilton had an easy time with Max Verstappen bulldozing both Ferraris off the track. Toro Rosso flubbed promising starting positions and lots of time-penalties were handed out, but very little actual racing.
- Canadian Grand Prix: Despite Stroll and Hartley crashing magnificently on the first lap, no-one challenged Sebastian Vettel for the race-victory in a disappointingly boring Canadian round. Besides Charles Leclerc scoring again for Sauber, the most exciting thing to happen besides the safety car was that the chequered flag was waved a lap too early.
- Hungarian Grand Prix: Lewis Hamilton won on superior pit-strategy in a chess-match style round and Bottas bounced around the track a bit. The rainy qualifying made an interesting grid but the results were disappointing as was the lack of over-taking.
- Monaco Grand Prix: Daniel Ricciardo held out on his excellent pace and tires in a waiting game round. Nothing spectacular happened and there were almost no overtakes. Leclerc and Hartley were taken out by break problems.