Rating probably the most spectacular F1 drivers thus far in 2022

With the 2022 F1 season reaching its summer time break, we now have chosen the highest 5 drivers who’ve impressed us probably the most throughout the primary 13 races of the marketing campaign.

Simply pipping Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz to a spot within the prime 5 is Sergio Perez, who has loved a a lot stronger sophomore marketing campaign at Pink Bull in comparison with his first season. 

Perez is flourishing in F1’s new-generation vehicles and till two pricey retirements in three races in Canada and Silverstone, he appeared to be a real contender on this 12 months’s title race. Solely Max Verstappen’s current type, coupled with Perez being pressured to play the staff recreation, has seen the Mexican forged right into a supporting function. 

After a massively constant begin to the season, together with a maiden pole place in Saudi Arabia, and his first victory across the streets of Monaco, 32-year-old Perez was rewarded with a recent contract which can maintain him at Pink Bull till a minimum of the top of 2024. 

Perez’s performances might have dipped barely in current rounds however he nonetheless holds third within the championship and has been a key think about serving to set up Pink Bull’s wholesome benefit within the constructors’ standings. 

Ferrari began the season with a bang and Charles Leclerc discovered himself main Max Verstappen by 46 factors after Australia, having claimed two poles, two victories and a second place within the opening three races. 

At that stage it regarded prefer it was Leclerc’s title to lose nevertheless it has since gone horribly improper. Leclerc has taken a complete of seven poles in 13 races, however has solely received 3 times compared to Verstappen’s eight victories and two poles. 

This has largely been all the way down to components outdoors his management; twice he suffered engine failures whereas main, and he has additionally been let down by a number of Ferrari strategic blunders. However Leclerc solely has himself accountable for 2 high-profile errors – a spin at Imola and crash whereas main in France – which have value him a possible 32 factors. 

Leclerc has been blisteringly quick however his uncooked velocity has not been capable of forestall Verstappen from operating away within the title race. With out Leclerc’s pricey errors, Verstappen would nonetheless have a large lead, however one that would nonetheless be overturned. Leclerc would require greater than a miracle to show issues round now.

Mr. Consistency. That’s the nickname George Russell has been dubbed following a formidable begin to life at Mercedes, regardless of the staff’s struggles for competitiveness thus far this 12 months. 

Russell is the one driver to have completed within the prime 5 in each race he has completed this season, with solely a DNF at Silverstone interrupting his outstanding run. 5 third-place finishes on the rostrum have helped the 24-year-old sit fourth within the championship. 

He’s two locations and 12 factors away from Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton, having outperformed the seven-time world champion for seven races on the trot till his momentum was halted in Canada. 

Russell held his personal towards Hamilton in qualifying, with the Saturday head-to-heads presently standing at 7-6 in Russell’s favour. He has additionally claimed Mercedes first and solely pole of 2022 thus far, with an excellent lap in Hungary. 

The younger Briton has stepped as much as the powerful problem of being teammates with Hamilton and has carried out beautifully in a troublesome and underperforming automotive. Can he keep his consistency by way of the ultimate 9 races of the marketing campaign? 

2) Lewis Hamilton 

Statistically, Lewis Hamilton is on target for his worst season in F1, with the seven-time world champion going through the prospect of shedding his file of successful a minimum of one grand prix in each season he has competed. Hamilton presently sits sixth within the championship and is behind his new Mercedes teammate Russell. 

However these statistics don’t inform the total story of the seven-time world champion’s 2022 season. 

In a bid to unlock extra efficiency amid the porpoising and bouncing points that plagued the W13 early within the season, Hamilton took the lead on Mercedes’ set-up experiments. These usually put Hamilton on the again foot or ruined his weekend altogether, corresponding to in Saudi Arabia.

 

Since Mercedes have gotten to the underside of their points and scaled again on experimenting, Hamilton’s outcomes have drastically improved. The seven-time world champion is presently having fun with a streak of 5 consecutive podiums, together with back-to-back second place finishes. It’s this current type that sees him simply edge Russell to runner-up spot in our listing. 

It is usually price nothing that Hamilton has had way more of the again luck of the 2 Mercedes drivers, largely with the timing of Security Automobiles, but he’s solely 12 factors adrift of Russell heading into the second half of the season, the place his type normally hits a peak. 

1) Max Verstappen 

Verstappen has been a lower above the remainder in 2022, regardless of early reliability gremlins threatening to spoil his title defence. 

The Dutchman has received eight of the 13 races this 12 months, and with a seemingly unassailable 80-point lead over Leclerc with 9 races to go, is properly on target to land his second world championship. 

Verstappen’s mixture of pure tempo, aggression and race administration has overwhelmed his rivals. His newest victory from tenth on the grid in Hungary was an actual champion’s efficiency. 

Apart from clumsy spins in Spain and Hungary that had no impact on his consequence, Verstappen has pushed flawlessly. The reigning world champion’s type has been relentless and he has demonstrated a extra managed and calculated method to his racing this 12 months. 

Regardless of the hole to teammate Perez being nearer, Verstappen has been excellent and appears to have stepped up one other degree since beating Hamilton of their intense title battle final season.

The best way issues are panning out, it seems to be extra a query of when, not if, Verstappen will develop into a double world champion.

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