Winners and Losers at the Canadian Grand Prix

Winners and Losers at the Canadian Grand Prix

9 June 2014 – A dramatic Canadian Grand Prix saw Mercedes beaten for the first time in 2014, with Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo stealing victory from Nico Rosberg. On the other end of the scale, Felipe Massa and Sergio Pérez endured a mammoth clash, while Lewis Hamilton retired. GPUpdate.net picks its winners and losers...

Winners

Pre-season there were perhaps a few doubts over whether Daniel Ricciardo really had what it takes to be a major player at the front of the Formula 1 field. It didn't take long for any questions to be answered in 2014 and he arrived in Canada having been 'best of the rest' behind the Mercedes duo for the last two races. But the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve wasn't expected to suit the RB10 and Ricciardo admitted that his qualifying lap was a 's**t house', even if it was just 0.041s behind team-mate Sebastian Vettel. Ricciardo stayed out of trouble for the duration of the race and crucially profited from Red Bull's strategy to jump Vettel. He remained calm behind Sergio Pérez – who was faster down the straights – and made his move at the crucial time. From there he rapidly hunted down the wounded Nico Rosberg to claim a popular and well deserved first win in the sport.

This was the weekend when Lewis Hamilton was supposed to claim back the authority in the world championship battle but instead the hands of fate aided Nico Rosberg in extending his championship advantage to a comfortable 22 points. Rosberg edged out Hamilton in qualifying and made his mark with a forceful but fair move into the first corner. From there he controlled proceedings, even if Hamilton was frequently taking chunks out of his lead. He had a moment at turn four but once the MGU-K problems hit, he was able to maintain a decent pace in the circumstances. With the lack of straight line speed he needed to nail the first two sectors every lap and he did – had Pérez managed to hold off Ricciardo for another lap or two (and Rosberg himself not run wide on lap 48) there's every reason to suggest that he would have claimed victory despite his W05 being severely disadvantage – itself an example of the squad's overall advantage.

Several drivers had a good race in Canada – including the likes of Jenson Button and Nico Hülkenberg – but no-one needed a top result more than Jean-Éric Vergne. The French driver arrived in Canada on the back of a streak of woeful misfortune which masked the progress he has made this season. But at a circuit which suits his driving style he was on form all weekend and set a strong time in Q3 before jumping Fernando Alonso at the start and only losing out through the pit stop phase. He was able to stay ahead of Kevin Magnussen and claim a handful of points for Toro Rosso. The recent form of Red Bull junior Carlos Sainz Jr in Formula Renault 3.5 has undoubtedly led to suggestions that the Spaniard is ready for Formula 1 in 2015. But Vergne's recent performances show that he shouldn't be dispensed with just because he's experienced (in Red Bull/Toro Rosso terms anyway!) Now he needs to build on this result across the next few rounds.

Losers

There were many losers during a dramatic Canadian Grand Prix but one of the main casualties was championship contender Lewis Hamilton. The Brit traditionally runs well at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve and after witnessing Rosberg take the win in Monaco, losing 18 points to his rival in Canada must have been a tough pill to swallow. Hamilton was on form throughout practice and most of qualifying but he failed to make it count during the closing stages and had to settle for second. He made the better start in the race but was fairly edged out by Rosberg and dropped behind Vettel, albeit a position which he soon corrected. He carved into Rosberg's lead but couldn't get through and when car troubles hit he was the one who suffered most. Whereas Rosberg could continue, Hamilton's brakes gave up the ghost and he had to call it a day. After a couple of tricky races, he needs a strong result in Austria.

Having departed Ferrari and arrived at Williams just as the team experienced an upturn in form, Felipe Massa has not yet picked up a result which the car's ability suggests is possible. The Brazilian has been beset by misfortune but in Canada it looked as if he would finally make the breakthrough. He started well and when Mercedes hit trouble he became the first non-Silver Arrow to lead a racing lap in 2014. Williams duly serviced him for a second time to avoid his tyres hitting the cliff but he was held up for too long by Hülkenberg and team-mate Valtteri Bottas. After clearing those two he pumped in personal best times and caught up with the lead group. But in trying to pass Pérez the Mexican jinked into his racing line and the duo had a high-speed clash, with Massa ending up in the wall. Considering his earlier position, a win was not out of the question, so ending the race in hospital was a disappointment.

Perhaps the most damning indictment of Ferrari's season was the fact that only 11 cars officially finished the race in Canada and the red cars of the Prancing Horse were sixth and 10th. Fernando Alonso struggled with balance and while his pace improved, he was unable to catch the leading group ahead and had to settle for sixth. Kimi Räikkönen meanwhile endured a dismal weekend as he rounded out the Q3 runners and had a scrappy race, which included a spin exiting the hairpin. The Finn was 24 seconds behind ninth-placed Magnussen at the end of the race and was fortunate to pick up a point. With Renault picking up their first victory of the new era only Ferrari has yet to savour top spot, with Alonso's podium in China an ever-distant memory. These are dire times for Formula 1's iconic team and there's little chance of matters improving quickly.

Phillip Horton
Twitter: @PHortonF1

related

Comments

Latest News
Full
Compact

  1. Friday 28 November 2014

  2. 18:34

    F1 2015: How the grid is shaping up

    F1
  3. Marko: Abu Dhabi test proved Sainz Jr. is ready 18:22

    Marko: Abu Dhabi test proved Sainz Jr. is ready

    Red Bull Motorsport Consultant Helmut Marko says Carlos Sainz Jr.'s performance at this week's post-race test in Abu Dhabi...

    F1
  4. Sainz Jr. joins Verstappen at Toro Rosso 17:05

    Sainz Jr. joins Verstappen at Toro Rosso

    Toro Rosso has confirmed that reigning Formula Renault 3.5 Series champion Carlos Sainz Jr. will make his Formula 1 debut...

    F1
  5. F1 2014: The best radio messages 16:58

    F1 2014: The best radio messages

    One popular aspect of modern Formula 1 is the interaction between drivers and teams during races. Although selective, radio...

    F1
  6. 14:46

    Book F1 tickets and join the action live!

    F1
  7. Miller concludes positive test in Malaysia 14:33

    Miller concludes positive test in Malaysia

    LCR Honda's Jack Miller was encouraged by the progress he made in adapting to MotoGP machinery during a three-day test at...

    MotoGP
  8. Video: Buemi surprises Renault owner 13:31

    Video: Buemi surprises Renault owner

    Red Bull reserve driver Sébastien Buemi surprises a Renault owner at the Circuito de Jerez.

    F1
  9. Ricciardo: No added pressure for 2015 11:40

    Ricciardo: No added pressure for 2015

    Daniel Ricciardo says he does not feel any added pressure for the 2015 season, after impressing in his first campaign with...

    F1
  10. Wolff steps up to Williams test role 09:16

    Wolff steps up to Williams test role

    Williams has announced that Susie Wolff will be stepping up to the position of official test driver for the 2015 Formula 1...

    F1
  11. Nasr: Sauber did not choose me for money 06:14

    Nasr: Sauber did not choose me for money

    Felipe Nasr says Sauber's decision to sign him for the 2015 season was based on driving ability, rather than how much money...

    F1
  12. Video of the Day: Hamilton in slot car race 05:09

    Video of the Day: Hamilton in slot car race

    F1 World Champion Lewis Hamilton takes part in a slot car race with BBC Radio 1's Nick Grimshaw.

    F1
  13. Thursday 27 November 2014

  14. Vettel: Ferrari success will take time 16:47

    Vettel: Ferrari success will take time

    Sebastian Vettel says he is under no illusions about the challenge he faces at Ferrari, admitting that it "will take some...

    F1
  15. Hülkenberg to race at Le Mans with Porsche 15:32

    Hülkenberg to race at Le Mans with Porsche

    Nico Hülkenberg will compete in the prestigious 24 Hours of Le Mans with Porsche next year alongside his ongoing Force India...

    F1
  16. Räikkönen: Arrivabene is the perfect team boss 14:05

    Räikkönen: Arrivabene is the perfect team boss

    Kimi Räikkönen reckons new Ferrari team boss Maurizio Arrivabene will propel the Italian marque towards the front of the F...

    F1
  17. Video: Räikkönen joins the logistics race 12:07

    Video: Räikkönen joins the logistics race

    Ferrari logistics partner UPS takes Kimi Räikkönen behind the scenes at its WorldPort facility.

    F1
  18. Kubica heads Monza Rally entry list 11:43

    Kubica heads Monza Rally entry list

    Ex-Formula 1 driver Robert Kubica, MotoGP star Valentino Rossi and NASCAR's Kurt Busch are the major names on the entry list...

    Misc
  19. Toro Rosso to name second driver on Monday 10:13

    Toro Rosso to name second driver on Monday

    The driver joining Max Verstappen at Toro Rosso for the 2015 season will be revealed on Monday, Red Bull advisor Helmut...

    F1
  20. Nasr thanks Williams for 2014 opportunities 09:27

    Nasr thanks Williams for 2014 opportunities

    Felipe Nasr has thanked Williams for the opportunities he was given as the team's test and reserve driver during the 2014...

    F1
  21. Pirelli pleased with reaction to 2015 tyres 06:14

    Pirelli pleased with reaction to 2015 tyres

    Pirelli says it is "very pleased" with the feedback it has received from drivers over the new 2015 tyres it brought to this...

    F1
  22. Video of the Day: 2014 Formula 1 highlights 05:02

    Video of the Day: 2014 Formula 1 highlights

    Relive highlights from the 2014 F1 season, in which Lewis Hamilton claimed his second world title.

    F1
  23. Wednesday 26 November 2014

  24. 16:49

    F1 photos: Abu Dhabi testing - Day 2

    F1
  25. Lynn delighted with maiden Formula 1 test 16:48

    Lynn delighted with maiden Formula 1 test

    Newly-crowned GP3 champion Alex Lynn described his first experience of F1 machinery as "fantastic", after testing for Lotus...

    F1
  26. Marciello: Impossible not to think of Bianchi 16:28

    Marciello: Impossible not to think of Bianchi

    Raffaele Marciello says fellow Ferrari academy driver Jules Bianchi was at the forefront of his mind as he made his Formula...

    F1
  27. 14:38

    Post-Abu Dhabi Grand Prix test: Day 2 results

    F1
  28. Wehrlein fastest as Abu Dhabi test concludes 14:37

    Wehrlein fastest as Abu Dhabi test concludes

    Mercedes reserve driver Pascal Wehrlein topped the timesheets on the final day of testing at Abu Dhabi's Yas Marina Circuit,...

    F1
  29. Vergne announces Toro Rosso exit 14:26

    Vergne announces Toro Rosso exit

    Jean-Éric Vergne has announced that he will not be racing for Toro Rosso in Formula 1 next season, with Red Bull bosses...

    F1
  30. Marko: Vettel's Ferrari visit breached contract 12:12

    Marko: Vettel's Ferrari visit breached contract

    Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko has claimed that Sebastian Vettel breached his contract by making an early appearance with new...

    F1
  31. Force India trials 'Info Wing' display system 10:04

    Force India trials 'Info Wing' display system

    A revolutionary LED display system, designed by Lewis Hamilton's father Anthony, was tested by Force India in Abu Dhabi on...

    F1
  32. Video: Lewis Hamilton surprises karter 09:06

    Video: Lewis Hamilton surprises karter

    Lewis Hamilton surprises nine-year-old karting champion Harley Haughton on BBC Radio 5 live, just hours after he was crowned...

    F1
  33. Ecclestone says Qatar 'ready' for F1 race 08:45

    Ecclestone says Qatar 'ready' for F1 race

    Formula 1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone says Qatar is planning to host a Grand Prix in the near future. If negotiations lead...

    F1
  34. Bottas: New Pirelli tyres more consistent 07:42

    Bottas: New Pirelli tyres more consistent

    Valtteri Bottas says he experienced "more consistent" tyre degradation on Pirelli's development 2015 rubber at this week's...

    F1
  35. Video: Stewart on Hamilton's title win 05:04

    Video: Stewart on Hamilton's title win

    Sir Jackie Stewart offers his views on Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton's title-winning 2014 campaign.

    F1
  36. Tuesday 25 November 2014

  37. Leal remains with Carlin for 2015 18:36

    Leal remains with Carlin for 2015

    Carlin has confirmed that Colombian racer Julián Leal will remain with the team for the 2015 GP2 season. Leal, 24, has...

    GP2
  38. 17:28

    F1 photos: Abu Dhabi testing - Day 1

    F1
  39. Honda says rivals faced same early issues 17:27

    Honda says rivals faced same early issues

    Honda says the teething problems it is facing at this week's Abu Dhabi test are no different to those endured by rival...

    F1
  40. GP2 champion Palmer eyes Force India role 16:11

    GP2 champion Palmer eyes Force India role

    GP2 champion Jolyon Palmer says he would like to occupy a role in Formula 1 with Force India, after testing for the team in...

    F1
  41. 14:23

    Post-Abu Dhabi Grand Prix test: Day 1 results

    F1
  42. Bottas tops first day of Abu Dhabi test 14:22

    Bottas tops first day of Abu Dhabi test

    Williams driver Valtteri Bottas set the standard on the opening day of the post-Abu Dhabi Grand Prix test at the Yas Marina...

    F1
  43. McLaren-Honda targets immediate success 12:52

    McLaren-Honda targets immediate success

    McLaren Racing Director Eric Boullier says the team will be targeting success from the very first race of its new engine...

    F1
  44. Lynn to make F1 test debut with Lotus 12:08

    Lynn to make F1 test debut with Lotus

    GP3 champion Alex Lynn is set to make his Formula 1 test debut with Lotus on the second day of this week's post-season...

    F1
more news