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Shanghai 2024 F1Lead's Grading of Drivers

Shanghai 2024: F1Lead’s Grading of Drivers

24/04/2024

F1Lead Hands Out Traditional Driver Ratings After China GP, with Max Verstappen and Lando Norris Standing Out

MAX VERSTAPPEN – 9.5/10
Verstappen had another top-tier weekend to claim his first-ever victory in China. Red Bull struggled more on the wet track on Friday, leaving Verstappen fourth on the sprint race grid. Apart from that, it was a flawless weekend for the three-time Formula 1 World Champion.

LANDO NORRIS – 9/10
His main mistake was his somewhat naïve positioning against Hamilton in the first lap of the sprint. Other than that, Norris was sensational, securing pole during sprint qualifying. His race pace was excellent, allowing him to finish ahead of one of the two Red Bulls at the end of the Grand Prix.

GEORGE RUSSELL – 8/10
Russell continues to save Mercedes’ day, departing with a respectable sixth place. Even though the sprint was more challenging for him, he was impressive the rest of the weekend, both in qualifying and during the race.

CHARLES LECLERC – 8.5/10
Leclerc had the upper hand over his teammate Sainz throughout the weekend in China. Given the pace of the Ferrari, fourth place was probably the best he could hope for.

ESTEBAN OCON – 8.5/10
Ocon’s performances continue to fly somewhat under the radar. He is currently leading 5-0 in the qualifying head-to-head against his teammate Gasly. Even though he had the latest upgrades from Alpine in China, it was still an impressive performance.

NICO HÜLKENBERG – 8.5/10
Hülkenberg delivered another solid weekend for Haas. He reached Q3 and left with the point for tenth place.

FERNANDO ALONSO – 8/10
Alonso made amends after a challenging sprint race with an exceptional lap in qualifying to secure third place on the grid. His race did not go quite as planned as Aston Martin oddly opted for soft tires under the safety car, forcing him to make an extra pit stop.

CARLOS SAINZ – 7.5/10
Sainz was outpaced by his teammate Leclerc in terms of pure performance, at least on the dry. Nonetheless, he deserves credit for the pace he demonstrated during his very long stint on hard tires during the Grand Prix.

VALTERI BOTTAS – 7.5/10
Bottas’ misfortune in 2024 continued in China with an engine failure that ended his race. Before that, he was running two seconds behind Hülkenberg, clearly battling for tenth place.

SERGIO PÉREZ – 7/10
A satisfactory weekend for Pérez, no more. Although he finished on the podium, he was unable to close the gap to Norris after overtaking Leclerc at turn 6.

DANIEL RICCIARDO – 7/10
China was undoubtedly Ricciardo’s strongest weekend of the 2024 F1 season. He was consistently fast. However, the bad news for him is that Racing Bulls was slightly behind Sauber and Haas in terms of pure performance, and then his race was ruined by Stroll.

ALEX ALBON – 7/10
Williams simply lacks the pace to fight for the top 10 currently. Albon continued his streak of superlative qualifications, consistently outperforming his teammate Sargeant.

OSCAR PIASTRI – 7/10
Even without the significant damage Piastri sustained early in the race, it was still a disappointing weekend overall for the McLaren driver. He was far from Norris’s level this weekend in Shanghai.

GUANYU ZHOU – 6.5/10
Zhou put on a brilliant sprint race to finish ninth, just outside the points. But when it mattered, he struggled more, getting eliminated in Q1 before having a rather anonymous race at home. His car had the pace needed to score points in China.

LEWIS HAMILTON – 6.5/10
Hamilton was sensational during the sprint, finishing second behind Verstappen. He had the pace needed to avoid elimination in Q1.

PIERRE GASLY – 6/10
A disjointed weekend for Gasly who continues to lag behind his teammate. However, the Frenchman was not on equal footing with Ocon this weekend, as he did not have the latest updates introduced by Alpine on the A524.

YUKI TSUNODA – 5.5/10
A rare off weekend for Tsunoda, who was not up to par with Ricciardo in Shanghai.

KEVIN MAGNUSSEN – 5/10
Magnussen’s weekend fell apart after a decent sprint, with the Dane being eliminated in Q1. However, he delivered the best battle of the year so far, fighting with Stroll for nearly half a lap.

LOGAN SARGEANT – 4/10
Another poor weekend for Sargeant, showing few signs of improvement this season.

LANCE STROLL – 1.5/10
Another weekend to forget for Stroll. A lack of pace combined with one of the most egregious errors ever seen in F1, crashing into the back of Ricciardo’s car under the safety car regime.

Shanghai 2024 F1Lead's Grading of Drivers

Shanghai 2024: F1Lead’s Grading of Drivers. Shanghai 2024: F1Lead’s Grading of Drivers

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