• Korean Grand Prix

Post-race driver rundown

Laurence Edmondson October 24, 2010

Fernando Alonso - 1st
It was a brilliant result for his championship campaign and a faultless drive. He had a lengthily pit stop for intermediate tyres but it didn't cost him as he was able to pressure Hamilton into a mistake at the restart. His tyre management was also very impressive and he ended the race with more tread on his tyres than any of the front runners.

Lewis Hamilton - 2nd
A solid result but it could have been better had he not run wide in the first corner on the second safety car restart and lost position to Alonso. Towards the end of the race his tyres went off but, considering how much Button struggled in the same car, he did remarkably well to hold on. It was also interesting to hear how confident he was to start the race while the Red Bull drivers moaned.

Felipe Massa - 3rd
He didn't make any mistakes and it paid off with a podium. He never looked capable of matching the top two and the Red Bulls, but it will be a welcome return to form after two bad results.

Michael Schumacher -4th
He was very gutsy at the start and it paid off as he picked his way through the field and showed flashes of his former brilliance. He monitored the situation well in the closing stages and didn't struggle too much with tyres. However, his performance begs the question of what Rosberg would have been able to achieve had he not been taken out by Webber.

Robert Kubica - 5th
Although he didn't show the same pace as he has in recent races, Kubica kept his head and scored a solid result. He managed to stay out of trouble and finally pressured Barrichello into a mistake to finish ahead.

Tonio Liuzzi - 6th
One of the drivers of the day. He was consistently quick and excelled in the wet conditions to move up from 17th on the grid without any scares. It's also a crucial result for his career as he tries to persuade Force India to honour his contract for next year.

Rubens Barrichello - 7th
His tyres let him down towards the end, but it was impressive that he managed to stay out while his team-mate Hulkenberg pitted for new intermediates. His final lap was six seconds slower than Liuzzi in front, showing just how little grip he had left.

Kamui Kobayashi - 8th
For Kobayashi it was actually quite a reserved performance, and it paid off. He found himself defending a lot more than he was attacking and it nearly ended in tears when Sutil bundled past and made serious contact. But he kept it all together and secured another solid result.

Nick Heidfeld - 9th
It was his first wet race since returning to F1 but he performed well and took a solid finish. Like Kobayashi he was on the defensive, but still came through and kept out of any serious trouble.

Nico Hulkenberg - 10th
He had to pit for a second set of intermediate tyres and that cost him several points. In the end he passed Alguersuari towards the end of the race and finished just 0.7 seconds off Heidfeld. Of greater concern right now will be his position in F1 next year, with it looking increasingly likely that he will be replaced by a pay driver despite a series of solid results.

Jaime Alguersuari - 11th
He was running as high as ninth before a problem in the pit stops dropped him to 15th. In a car down on top speed compared to its F-duct-equipped rivals, he did remarkably well and had no way of defending tenth when Hulkenberg came past on fresh tyres.

The race had to be delayed dur to wet weather © Getty Images
Enlarge
Jenson Button - 12th
A disastrous race that appears to have brought an end to his championship hopes. He complained of a complete lack of grip and was locking his front tyres into all the major braking zones. A pit stop just before the safety car period didn't help, but his first set of tyres were finished and he had no choice. He also had a post-race dig at Sutil after the Force India barged his way past midway through the race: "I don't know what he was thinking."

Heikki Kovalainen - 13th
Despite an early trip across the grass he managed to secure a decent finish in difficult conditions. He finished a lap down but that's no shame driving for one of the six new teams this year.

Bruno Senna - 14th
A season's best result for Senna but it was far from easy for him. Under the safety car at the start he realised that one of his tyres had been put on the wrong way around, although the resulting pit stop didn't cost him any places as he was starting from the back. After a couple of scares he settled down and secured a decent finish two laps down.

Sakon Yamamoto - 15th
He completed a double finish for HRT, which is an achievement in itself for the team this year. He had a couple of scrapes at the start but kept out of any serious trouble and secured a good finish.

Adrian Sutil - DNF - Accident
There is a fine line between opportunism and recklessness when driving an F1 car in the wet and Sutil came very close to crossing the border. It was good to see a driver attack in such difficult conditions, but with each mistake he seemed to become more aggressive on the next attempt. It all ended when he lost the rear of his Force India under braking and slammed into the side of Kobayashi. He was lucky not to take out the Sauber too.

Sebastian Vettel - DNF - Engine
More bad luck for Vettel cost him another race win. Alonso couldn't match him when they were both out on track and it was a cruel blow for the 23-year-old when his engine blew. He is now 25 points (the reward for a win) off Alonso in the title chase and is relying on the Ferrari having a similar problem.

Vitaly Petrov - DNF - Accident
His accident was proof of how difficult it was to keep the tyres in shape towards the end of the race. A momentary lapse in concentration saw his car enter a huge slide that ended with contact with the barriers. It was not the kind of result he needed to stay in F1 next year.

Timo Glock - DNF - Accident
He was running as high as 13th, and could have been in place to get Virgin into the top ten in the championship, when Buemi crashed into him. It's true that he was holding a train of cars up when the accident happened, but his pace wasn't too bad and he deserved a better result.

Sebastien Buemi - DNF - Accident
He took Glock out of the race after a making a mistake under braking off the racing line. Like Glock, he could have scored a good result for his team and later admitted responsibility for the accident: "I braked late and locked the front wheels, so I could not turn and ended up going straight on and hitting Timo. I am sorry for him"

Luca di Grassi - DNF - Accident
Another error of judgement saw him fail to finish his ninth race of the season. After making a number of early pit stops he was out of position and that resulted in him losing control trying to pass Yamamoto.

Jarno Trulli - DNF - Accident
A problem with the temperamental hydraulics on his Lotus meant he lost power steering and spun off. He attempted to carry on after replacing his front wing but the team couldn't solve the problem.

Mark Webber - DNF - Accident
His championship chances took a pretty big knock after he spun off, but his campaign is by no means over. He admitted to the mistake and said he was now focused on the final two races. But even with the most positive mental attitude, it'll be hard to forget that he threw away a potential victory this weekend.

Nico Rosberg - DNF - Accident
He was showing some impressive pace in the opening stages and could have been on for a podium finish or even better, given that he was ahead of Hamilton and Alonso had a long pit stop. But there was no way he could have avoided Webber's car once he had committed to going to the inside of the corner and the inevitable collision followed.

Laurence Edmondson is an assistant editor on ESPNF1

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Feeds Feeds: Laurence Edmondson

Laurence Edmondson Close
Laurence Edmondson is deputy editor of ESPNF1 Laurence Edmondson grew up on a Sunday afternoon diet of Ayrton Senna and Nigel Mansell and first stepped in the paddock as a Bridgestone competition finalist in 2005. He worked for ITV-F1 after graduating from university and has been ESPNF1's deputy editor since 2010