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 August 2015

  2. 17:02

    Book F1 tickets and join the action live!

    F1
  3. Grosjean sure he would have passed Vettel 16:08

    Grosjean sure he would have passed Vettel

    Lotus driver Romain Grosjean says he is "convinced" that he would have passed Sebastian Vettel for third at the Belgian Grand…

    F1
  4. 15:12

    Latest MotoGP photos: Friday at Silverstone

    MotoGP
  5. Lorenzo edges Márquez in second practice 15:03

    Lorenzo edges Márquez in second practice

    Yamaha rider Jorge Lorenzo edged out Repsol Honda rival Marc Márquez during second practice for the British Grand Prix at…

    MotoGP
  6. Bottas 'expected more' from 2015 car 14:01

    Bottas 'expected more' from 2015 car

    Valtteri Bottas has admitted that he "expected more" from the Williams FW37 this season, but he is hopeful that progress will be…

    F1
  7. GPUpdate lets readers ask Hülkenberg questions 12:02

    GPUpdate lets readers ask Hülkenberg questions

    Earlier in the season, GPUpdate.net gave readers the chance to quiz Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo and Lotus driver Romain…

    F1
  8. Márquez tops first practice at Silverstone 10:50

    Márquez tops first practice at Silverstone

    Repsol Honda's Marc Márquez topped the times during Friday morning's opening practice session for the British Grand Prix at…

    MotoGP
  9. Video: IndyCars cross Golden Gate Bridge 09:36

    Video: IndyCars cross Golden Gate Bridge

    Ahead of this weekend's IndyCar season finale at Sonoma, drivers completed a demonstration run across San Francisco's Golden…

    Indy
  10. Preview: Chasing Montoya, honouring Wilson 09:22

    Preview: Chasing Montoya, honouring Wilson

    As the IndyCar circus arrives in California for the resolution of a tense and complex championship battle, the sport also finds…

    Indy
  11. Servià to drive Wilson's car at Sonoma 07:38

    Servià to drive Wilson's car at Sonoma

    Oriol Servià will drive Justin Wilson's Andretti car at this weekend's IndyCar finale at Sonoma in tribute to the Briton, who…

    Indy
  12. Video of the Day: Sound of a radio message 05:23

    Video of the Day: Sound of a radio message

    Mercedes partner BOSE covers radio tranmissions in the latest part of its 'Sounds of Formula 1' series.

    F1
  13. Thursday 27 August 2015

  14. Alonso expects 'completely different' second half 17:59

    Alonso expects 'completely different' second half

    Fernando Alonso is predicting a "completely different" performance from McLaren-Honda over the second half of the season, as the…

    F1
  15. Red Bull set to take Monza engine drops 15:12

    Red Bull set to take Monza engine drops

    Red Bull team boss Christian Horner says Daniel Ricciardo and Daniil Kvyat are likely to take grid penalties at the Italian…

    F1
  16. Frijns hoping for Andretti Formula E seat 14:24

    Frijns hoping for Andretti Formula E seat

    Robin Frijns has set his sights on securing the vacant race seat at Andretti for the upcoming Formula E campaign, but says…

    FE
  17. Video: IndyCar drivers preview Sonoma finale 13:02

    Video: IndyCar drivers preview Sonoma finale

    IndyCar drivers preview this weekend's season finale at Sonoma, which takes place under a cloud following Justin Wilson's death.…

    Indy
  18. Mallya confident of keeping Hülkenberg 10:42

    Mallya confident of keeping Hülkenberg

    Force India team boss Vijay Mallya says he is "quite confident" of retaining Nico Hülkenberg's services for the 2016 season…

    F1
  19. Chilton reveals Haas F1 discussions 09:37

    Chilton reveals Haas F1 discussions

    Former Marussia racer Max Chilton has revealed that he has held discussions with the arriving Haas F1 Team over a potential…

    F1
  20. Kvyat to demo Formula 1 car in Russia 08:22

    Kvyat to demo Formula 1 car in Russia

    Red Bull driver Daniil Kvyat will showcase Formula 1 machinery in his native Russia on Sunday. Kvyat is set to get behind the…

    F1
  21. Video of the Day: Hamilton's summer holiday 05:06

    Video of the Day: Hamilton's summer holiday

    Take a look at what Lewis Hamilton got up to during his summer break away from Formula 1.

    F1
  22. Wednesday 26 August 2015

  23. Crutchlow pens new two-year LCR deal 14:35

    Crutchlow pens new two-year LCR deal

    British rider Cal Crutchlow has secured his MotoGP future until the end of 2017 after signing a new two-year deal to remain with…

    MotoGP
  24. Lorenzo sees 'great opportunity' at Silverstone 13:28

    Lorenzo sees 'great opportunity' at Silverstone

    Jorge Lorenzo says he sees a "great opportunity" for himself and Yamaha at this weekend's British Grand Prix, as he looks to…

    MotoGP
  25. Video: Repsol Honda's British GP preview 12:36

    Video: Repsol Honda's British GP preview

    Repsol Honda looks ahead to this weekend's British MotoGP Grand Prix at the Silverstone circuit.

    MotoGP
  26. Chilton: Closed cockpits in five to 10 years 11:43

    Chilton: Closed cockpits in five to 10 years

    Former Marussia driver Max Chilton is certain that Formula 1 will adopt closed cockpits in the future, and expects the switch to…

    F1
  27. Feature: Belgian GP's key questions 11:21

    Feature: Belgian GP's key questions

    Ahead of the Belgian Grand Prix at the historic Spa-Francorchamps, GPUpdate.net posed five questions and pondered the outcomes.…

    F1
  28. Vettel defends Ferrari's Belgian GP strategy 09:46

    Vettel defends Ferrari's Belgian GP strategy

    Sebastian Vettel has spoken out in defence of Ferrari's strategy at the Belgian Grand Prix, insisting that the decision to…

    F1
  29. Mark Sutton: Story Behind the Shot - Belgium 07:27

    Mark Sutton: Story Behind the Shot - Belgium

    Especially for lovers of motorsport photography, GPUpdate.net's race-by-race series, Story Behind the Shot, continues throughout…

    F1
  30. Video of the Day: Driven by Data - Downforce 05:23

    Video of the Day: Driven by Data - Downforce

    McLaren highlights how much downforce is generated by a modern Formula 1 car.

    F1
  31. Tuesday 25 August 2015

  32. 18:18

    Photos: FE pre-season testing – Day 6

    FE
  33. Prost heads e.Dams 1-2 on final test day 18:11

    Prost heads e.Dams 1-2 on final test day

    Nicolas Prost edged out team-mate Sébastien Buemi in a Renault e.Dams 1-2 on the final day of pre-season testing at Donington…

    FE
  34. 16:20

    Photo gallery: Justin Wilson (1978-2015)

    Indy
  35. Toro Rosso remembers 'true racer' Wilson 15:07

    Toro Rosso remembers 'true racer' Wilson

    Toro Rosso has paid tribute to Justin Wilson, who raced for the team in Formula 1 under its previous guise of Minardi, after…

    F1
  36. Smith extends Tech 3 deal through 2016 14:16

    Smith extends Tech 3 deal through 2016

    Bradley Smith has extended his contract with Tech 3 Yamaha through 2016. Smith made the step up to MotoGP with Tech 3 after…

    MotoGP
  37. Ferrari doesn't want 'fight' with Pirelli 13:19

    Ferrari doesn't want 'fight' with Pirelli

    Ferrari team boss Maurizio Arrivabene says the outfit does not want to get involved in a "fight" with Formula 1 tyre supplier…

    F1
  38. Horner on Renault: 'Business as usual' 12:43

    Horner on Renault: 'Business as usual'

    Red Bull team boss Christian Horner has insisted that it is "business as usual" with engine supplier Renault, amid speculation…

    F1
  39. Video: Wilson triumphs at Texas in 2012 11:47

    Video: Wilson triumphs at Texas in 2012

    Look back at Justin Wilson's triumph at the Texas Motor Speedway in 2012, his last IndyCar victory.

    Indy
  40. Motorsport pays tribute to Justin Wilson 10:38

    Motorsport pays tribute to Justin Wilson

    IndyCar and the wider motorsport community have been paying tribute to Justin Wilson, following the news of his passing on…

    Indy
  41. Remembering Justin Wilson, 1978-2015 08:16

    Remembering Justin Wilson, 1978-2015

    Justin Wilson died aged 37 on Monday evening after succumbing to injuries sustained in last weekend's IndyCar race at Pocono.…

    Indy
  42. Video of the Day: Formula E Tokyo run 05:04

    Video of the Day: Formula E Tokyo run

    Ex-F1 driver Sakon Yamamoto demonstrates a Formula E car around the streets of Tokyo in Japan.

    FE
  43. Justin Wilson succumbs to head injury 02:17

    Justin Wilson succumbs to head injury

    IndyCar driver Justin Wilson has died from a head injury sustained in Sunday's race at Pocono. Wilson was struck in the head…

    Indy
  44. Monday 24 August 2015

  45. 19:37

    Photos: FE pre-season testing – Day 5

    FE
more news