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Valtteri Bottas, Alfa Romeo F1 Team, Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing
Autosport Plus
Opinion

How Perez's 2023 qualifying struggles led to an Autosport driver ratings U-turn

OPINION: For the second year in a row, Autosport is changing the way it ranks the Formula 1 driving crop. But, we’re actually going back to the previous method we’d been applying up to 2022’s end. Here’s why the performances of one particular driver, and not a certain other, led to this about-face

Let's start off with both a little secret and also something of correcting the record from the 2023 Formula 1 season. The alternative headline for this column was: ‘An apology to Nico Hulkenberg’.

The sentiment here is that the Haas racer was the one to suffer most in our driver ratings change for 2023, where only each driver’s race performance was assessed for a mark out of 10. That’s a rather hyperbolic way of describing the situation, of course, but ultimately when it came to our regular rankings piece following each F1 weekend last year, Hulkenberg’s consistent qualifying heroics were ignored – all amid the Haas squad’s struggles with in-race tyre wear.

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