Now that the 2013 Formula One Season has ended and the focus is shifting towards events of the 2014 season, I have decided to compile a team review with all eleven teams that raced this year. will be starting my review starting from the back of the grid to the world champions of 2013.
Here we go…
11th place: Caterham- 0 points
- Drivers: Gideo Van Der Garde and Charles Pic
2012 saw the Caterham team managing to get 10th place of the Constructors Championship off Marussia at the last race of the season in Brazil. This year has saw Caterham finish in the standings in last place.
Every year as many Formula One Fans will know see Caterham saying every year that this is the year they make significant steps forward. And this year, they did not. At the start of the season, Caterham did not have the car to challenge the Marussia’s.
Throughout the season, in the hands of Gideo Van Der Garde, Caterham did improve and regularly out qualified both Marussia drivers. And I believe that he did a good job with the equipment that was given to him. Charles Pic in my eyes last year had potential and was rewarded with a move to Caterham from Marussia. Pic did not do anything for the team and was out qualified by his team mate on a regular basis.
The best moment for the team this season would be their qualifying performance in Belgium, where they made it into Q2. The worst moment for the team would be losing their 10th place from last year.
10th Place: Marussia- 0 points
- Drivers: Jules Bianchi and Max Chilton
2012 saw Marussia sadly losing the tenth place in the Constructor’s Championship that they held onto for dear life to Caterham in the final race in Brazil. This year they have managed to achieve the place they lost and celebrated in fine style.
However, despite the team achieving this tenth place thanks to Bianchi placing 13th in the Malaysian Grand Prix, it only highlighted the battle that Marussia face every season. Marussia do the best with the resources and limited financial resources that they have.
Throughout the season, Bianchi has impressed everyone in the paddock with his performances. He has regularly out qualified and out raced his team mate Chilton (apart from Monaco where he crashed). The team also managed to get into Q2 in Belgium. Bianchi has been rewarded for his efforts and has been re-signed for the team for next season.
Meanwhile, Chilton has not been able to regularly out qualify his team mate (apart from Monaco) but he has set a new record in the sport as a rookie. Chilton is the only rookie to finish every race of the season. And he deserves the credit for bringing the car home and for setting a new benchmark for rookies in the sport.
The best moments for the team this season was Marussia getting into Q2 in Belgium, Bianchi finishing in 13th place in the Malaysian Grand Prix and also Chilton finishing every race. The worst moment for the team this season was Bianchi’s Marussia rolling backwards in the German Grand Prix (which was also a weird moment of the season for me!).
9th Place: Williams- 5 points
- Drivers: Valteri Bottas and Pastor Maldonado
2012 saw Williams having one of the best competitive years since the glory days of partnering with BMW. Pastor Maldonado saw himself winning his first Grand Prix in Spain. Both drivers throughout the season scoring competitive points and seeing the team finish in 8th in the Constructors Championship.
This year has seen Williams slip back into ninth place in the Constructors Championship, leaving the team sadly lacking the pace once again to challenge the midfield teams and looking forward to hopefully challenge the midfield once again in 2014.
Throughout the season, Williams were not in a position to challenge and fight competitively with the field. Throughout the latter part of the season, Bottas in the United States Grand Prix impressed everyone by scoring two valuable points for the team. Bottas showed the potential that Williams spotted in him when they signed him and has shown he is a talent for the future.
Meanwhile, Maldonado has been a source of disappointment for the team. Firstly, he did score a point for the team at the Hungarian Grand Prix. However, his attitude towards the team that gave him his first chance in Formula One and in general has been the talking point of the season. Maldonado has now left the team and has moved to Lotus for next season that caused much controversy over the past few weeks.
The best moments for the team this season was Bottas and Maldonado scoring points for the team and also Bottas claiming third place at the Canadian Grand Prix. The worst moments for the team this season was Chilton crashing into Maldonado at Monaco, the wheel problems they experienced in two Grand Prix and were fined for, Maldonado’s comments that the team sabotaged the car for him at United States Grand Prix and also Maldonado in general (the less said the better!).
8th Place: Toro Ross- 33 points
- Drivers: Daniel Riccardo and Jean-Eric Vergne
2012 saw Toro Rosso not having a competitive season if I am honest. However, the new rookie line up of Riccardo and Vergne did manage to score 26 points, keep their drives for this season and secure 9th place in the Constructors Championship.
This year has seen Toro Rosso managing to move up to eighth place in the Constructors and scoring 33 points. Toro Rosso when they are on form is brilliant, but when they are not on form, they are average. This leaves the team with hard work to do if they are never going to challenge the top teams.
Throughout the season, Riccardo has impressed the paddock with his driving this season. He managed to beat his team mate several times. Riccardo managed to secure some good solid points for the team by scoring in China, Spain, Britain, Belgium, Italy, India and Brazil. These results have managed to secure Riccardo a promotion to Red Bull as Webber’s replacement to Vettel next season.
However, Vergne has had a pretty poor season by my standards and has been lucky to keep his drive for next year. Vergne did score points for the team in Malaysia, Monaco and Canada. Towards the latter part of the season, Vergne was not competitive enough to challenge for points and was beaten several times by his team mate.
The best moment of the season for the team was both drivers scoring points for them. The worst moment of the season for the team was regularly not getting into Q2 (especially with Vergne).
7th Place: Sauber- 57 points
- Drivers: Nico Hulkenberg and Esteban Guiterrez
2012 was a very good year for Sauber. Sauber with Perez were challenging Alonso for a win at the Malaysian Grand Prix. But three solid podiums from Sergio Perez and challenging for good points competitively, scoring 126 points which secured them sixth place in the Constructors Championship.
At the start of this year, Sauber were not competitive and were struggling to challenge the field. Throughout the latter stages of the season, in the hands of Hulkenberg, Sauber ended the year on a high. Hulkenberg had an impressive drive to fifth place at Monza and fourth place in Korea a month after. It was from his show of form that Hulkenberg was linked with a drive at Lotus. Due to Lotus’s financial situations away from the track, Hulkenberg ended up at Force India for next season.
Meanwhile, Guiterrez impressed me slightly in his debut season but not enough. Guiterrez did score some points for the team in Japan. Throughout the season, Guiterrez did battle well to keep drivers such as Hamilton, Rosberg and Bottas at bay while trying to score some points for the Sauber team. But I feel that Guiterrez could be a casualty of the season and could end up losing his drive in the sport.
The best moments of the season for the team was Hulkenberg’s impressive run of form at the latter stages of the season (especially in Korea) and also Guiterrez scoring his first points of the season. The worst moments of the season would be their poor first half of the season and also Guiterrez colliding with Sutil.
6th Place: Force India: 77 points
- Drivers: Paul Di Resta and Adrian Sutil
2012 saw Force India engaged in a battle with Sauber for sixth place in the Constructors Championship which they sadly lost with 109 points to Sauber’s 126 points.
At the start of the year, Force India had their best start to an F1 season and looked like they could challenge McLaren at one point in the standings for the Constructors. The team also got to grips with the Pirelli tyres and looked to make one pit stop strategies work when other teams could not. After the tyre change in Germany, Force India was the most affected by this sadly could not keep the pace shown at the early part of the season.
Paul Di Resta had a terrific start to the season scoring points in Australia, China, Bahrain, Spain, Monaco, Canada and Britain. Di Resta suffered a dip in form for five consecutive races but managed to score again in India and Abu Dhabi and finished the season scoring 48 points. I believe if Di Resta had not suffered the dip in form and was more consistent, he would have still been in the sport for next year. Sadly, this is not the case and Di Resta is looking for sports car racing for his future.
Meanwhile, Sutil did manage to score points for the team but was beaten by Di Resta. Sutil scored for the team in Australia, Monaco, Canada, Britain, Belgium, Singapore, India and Abu Dhabi. I believe that Sutil has been very lucky to get a drive with Sauber next season. But both drivers have served the team well and have done the best job they can with what resources they were given.
The best moments of the season for the team were the points Di Resta and Sutil scored for the team and both drivers challenging for the podiums (Di Resta in Bahrain and Sutil in Monaco). The worst moments of the season for the team were the five double team failures they had and also the tyre change from Pirelli that affected the latter part of the season.
5th Place: McLaren: 122 points
- Drivers: Jenson Button and Sergio Perez
2012 saw McLaren have the fastest car of the season and one of the only teams that could provide a challenge to the Red Bulls and secured third in the Constructors with 376 points. Brazil 2012 saw Button take a brilliant victory and the future looked bright for the team, despite Lewis Hamilton leaving for Mercedes.
However, this season has been the worst for the team since the 1980’s and failed to secure a podium place finish. The McLarens did not have the pace to be competitive at all and were struggling to even get past Q2 at selected races of the season.
Both drivers are glad that this season is over, especially Button. Button has experienced his worst season at McLaren since joining the team in 2010. Button was out qualified and sometimes out raced by Perez this year. But he did manage to score points for the team in Australia, China, Bahrain, Spain, Monaco, Germany, Hungary, Belgium, Italy, Singapore, Korea, Japan, USA and Brazil. Button despite not having the car to challenge the front runners used his experience as a world champion to keep scoring points and his drive in Brazil proved this.
Meanwhile, Perez did the best he could, just like Button. Perez joined the team this year with Sauber after impressing everyone in the paddock with scoring consistent points and scoring three podiums. He did score points for the team in Malaysia, Bahrain, Spain, Germany, Hungary, Singapore, Korea, India, Abu Dhabi, USA and Brazil. Perez towards the latter end of the season drove some cracking races fighting for his career after being dropped by McLaren for Kevin Magnussen for next year but he is joining Force India for next season.
The best moments of the season for the team were the drive from both drivers in Brazil, Perez in India and in Austin, Button in China, Belgium and Germany. The worst moments of the season were the team struggling in selected races to clear Q2 and also failing to score points, their poor showing at the British Grand Prix and also Perez’s crash after Q2 in Brazil.
4th Place: Lotus: 315 points
- Drivers: Kimi Raikkonen, Romain Grosjean and Heikki Kovalainen
2012 saw the return of Raikkonen from a two year sabbatical and also Grosjean driving for Lotus. Raikkonen won his first Grand Prix since his return in fine style in Abu Dhabi. Grosjean meanwhile was making a reputation for himself for crashing at the start of Grand Prix which he served a one race ban in Italy as a result of Belgium. Despite this, Lotus looked competitive and managed to secure fourth place in the Constructors with 303 points.
This year has seen the team sadly keep their position in the Constructors despite challenging the Red Bulls regularly especially in the latter half of the season. The team have been the source of debate throughout the season with issues surrounding Kimi, a proposed deal with Quantum Motorsports (less said the better!) and also issues surrounding signing Hulkenberg and Maldonado.
Raikkonen once again impressed everyone with his speed and his driving this season. Raikkonen managed to score before sitting out the final two races of the season to get back surgery before racing for Ferrari in 2014 (there are a lot of conspiracies surrounding this decision) with a win in Australia and points in Malaysia, China, Bahrain, Spain, Monaco, Canada, Britain, Germany, Hungary, Singapore, Korea, Japan and India. Raikkonen showed once again that despite issues surrounding him not being paid and also with his back that he has the drive and determination required to become a champion again.
Meanwhile, Grosjean has been the most improved driver this season. With all the problems he encountered last year, we have seen that Grosjean is without a doubt a potential race winner and world champion. Grosjean managed to score points in Australia, Malaysia, China, Bahrain, Germany, Hungary, Belgium, Italy, Korea, Japan, India, Abu Dhabi, Austin and Brazil. All I can say is if Grosjean keeps this form up, I believe that he could win a race next season.
I should add that Raikkonen’s replacement Kovalainen for the US and Brazilian Grand Prix did not score any points for the team which is what he needed to do. But despite this, Kovalainen did the best that he could do with the time that he had to adjust to the team and the car.
The best moments for the team were Kimi’s win in Australia, Grosjean’s podium in Bahrain and Grosjean’s latter performance in the season. The worst moments for the team would be the issues surrounding Raikkonen going to have his back surgery, the issues surrounding Quantum and Hulkenberg, the signing of Maldonado from Williams and also their current financial situation that is still ongoing.
3rd Place: Ferrari: 354 points
- Drivers: Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa
2012 was the season that Ferrari wanted to forget despite the team finishing second with 400 points in the Constructors and Alonso as runner up to Sebastian Vettel. The team did not have the car to challenge the Red Bull but my god did they pull some results out of a hat and the team looked ahead to this season.
However, this season has seen Ferrari despite finishing third in the Constructors produce a worse car than the previous year. Ferrari in the first part of the season won a race with Alonso and were challenging in the top five consistently in the race. However, throughout the season, Alonso and Massa have not looked competitive and have produced stunning drives to gain third place in the standings this year.
Alonso once again has produced the goods in a car that does not match his racing talent. Alonso scored two wins at China and Spain and then scored points in Australia, Bahrain, Monaco, Canada, Britain, Germany, Hungary, Belgium, Singapore, Korea, Japan, Austin and Brazil. Alonso has showed once again that he can be relied upon to race with his heart on his sleeve and pick up the best result possible for the team.
Meanwhile, Massa has had a season of mixed fortune again. Massa had a good start to the season from last year scoring at Australia, Malaysia, China and Spain. However in Monaco, Felipe retired from the race by experiencing the same crash twice in two days. Felipe then scored again in Canada, Britain, Hungary, Belgium, Italy, Singapore, Korea, Japan, Abu Dhabi and Brazil. Despite this, Massa did not keep his Ferrari seat and after six years of service, he has now joined Williams for next season.
The best moments of the season for the team were Alonso’s wins in China and Spain, Massa’s fourth in Italy, Alonso’s drives in Singapore and Belgium and keeping third in the Constructors. The worst moments for the team were Felipe’s crashes in Monaco, Alonso’s retirement in Malaysia and Alonso in India.
2nd Place: Mercedes: 360 points
- Drivers: Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg
2012 saw Mercedes under Michael Schumacher and Rosberg trying to fight the field for competitive points. Despite all their efforts, Mercedes could only place fifth in the Constructors last year with 142 points and left them looking forward to this year with Hamilton who joined the team from McLaren.
Mercedes truly have been the most improved team of the season. They managed to make a better car than last season and under the partnership of Hamilton and Rosberg have been fruitful for them. They managed to secure three wins this season, challenged the Red Bulls in qualifying and also in the race when others could not. However, they did struggle towards the final part of the season but managed to keep their runner up spot in the championship.
Hamilton has done very well this year. I was expecting Hamilton to regret his move to the team however I do believe this was the right move for him. Hamilton won his first win for Mercedes in Hungary in a dominant fashion. Hamilton also scored at Australia, Malaysia, China, Bahrain, Monaco, Canada, Britain, Germany, Belgium, Italy, Singapore, Korea, India, Abu Dhabi, Austin and Brazil. He lost a win at his home race at Silverstone with a tyre failure on the Pirelli tyres that was not his fault but managed to get fourth place. Despite all the problems in his personal life this season, Hamilton should be pleased by what he has achieved this year.
Rosberg I believe has stepped up his game. Since Hamilton joined the team, Rosberg has performed. Rosberg received a better car than last year, pushed the team over the winter and was rewarded with wins at his home race in Monaco and also in Britain. Rosberg also scored at Malaysia, Bahrain, Spain, Canada, Germany, Belgium, Italy, Singapore, Korea, Japan, India, Abu Dhabi, Austin and Brazil. Both drivers should be pleased with their and the team’s achievements this year and this result will press them on for 2014.
The best moments for the team were the wins that the team managed to achieve with Rosberg and Hamilton, beating the Red Bull’s in qualifying throughout the season (Silverstone for me was the best), battling the Red Bull’s throughout the season and also securing second place in the championship. The worst moments for the team was the tyre failure with Hamilton at Silverstone and selected races in the season that arguments over both drivers fighting for position that were broadcast on Sky Sports F1.
1st Place: Red Bull: 596 points
- Drivers: Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber
And once again, nothing has changed. Red Bull just like last year was dominant and crowned world champions once again. Last year they scored 460 points and this year they managed 596 points. Just like the previous year, Red Bull have built and designed a car that is one step ahead of the field. This year saw the team and Vettel secure four consecutive championships which to give them credit is a remarkable achievement.
Vettel has been in a class of his own this year. Despite the controversial win at Malaysia that to be honest should have been Webber’s, he has achieved a new record in the sport. Vettel has scored thirteen race wins this season and beating the record of consecutive race wins in a season from Michael Schumacher and Alberto Ascari (Vettel scored nine wins). All I can say about Vettel is that he sadly was the best driver of this year; he drove brilliantly and deserved to take his fourth world title.
Meanwhile, Webber has had a brilliant last season in the sport. Webber was robbed of a win in the Malaysian Grand Prix by Vettel not following the ‘Multi 21’ orders within the team. But he scored at Australia, Bahrain, Spain, Monaco, Canada, Britain, Germany, Hungary, Belgium, Italy, Japan, Abu Dhabi, Austin and Brazil. I really hoped that Webber would win a final Grand Prix after announcing his retirement at the British Grand Prix. He really deserved one especially after Malaysia and also loyally serving a sport he loves so much. Sadly, it was not meant to be. But Mark had an amazing season and we will miss him dearly.
The best moments for the team this season were of course their fourth consecutive championships, beating Schumacher and Ascari’s consecutive race wins in a season with Vettel, Webber’s second places at Silverstone, Abu Dhabi and Brazil. The worst moments for the team were the Malaysian Grand Prix and the aftermath of ‘Multi 21’, Webber’s retirement at the Indian Grand Prix and Vettel’s retirement at Silverstone (which is a highlight of glory for me!).
Well, I hope you enjoyed looking back at the 2013 season of Formula One. A season full of controversy, rumours, records being beaten and Vettel showing once again that his dominant display shows no sign of ending anytime soon.
All Formula One fans are now looking, hoping and praying that with the rule changes, the change in drivers up and down the field, the new V6 engines making their debut in March at the Australian Grand Prix and also in season testing sets up the 2014 season nicely. What will happen in 2014? It is anyone’s guess.