1 | Sebastian Vettel | Infiniti Red Bull Racing | Ret | 9/10
Vettel narrowly edged out team-mate Mark Webber in qualifying and got a good start to move up to second place. The reigning champion benefited from Hamilton’s misfortune but disaster was to strike on Lap 41. The gearbox sounded ropey under braking for Vale and Vettel spluttered to a halt. Then he tripped over his front wing for good measure.
2 | Mark Webber | Infiniti Red Bull Racing | 2nd | 8/10
Webber’s customary poor starts made a cameo at Silverstone and contact with Romain Grosjean exacerbated matters. He charged through the field with a steely determination and just missed out on victory, nonetheless claiming his fifth successive British podium. Then he called Vettel ‘Michael’ in the cool down room…
3 | Fernando Alonso | Ferrari | 3rd | 8/10
Alonso was downbeat following a mediocre qualifying and his start was little better. But he rapidly made progress and was on the optimum strategy following the final safety car period. He picked off his rivals with ease to secure another podium.
4 | Felipe Massa | Ferrari | 6th | 8/10
Massa shot off the line to leap up from eleventh to fifth in just a few corners. He was subsequently the second victim of tyre Russian roulette and limped back to the pits after almost a full circuit. Despite the issues, he fought back through the field and made his way back to sixth place in what was a very good drive.
5 | Jenson Button | Vodafone McLaren Mercedes | 13th | 5/10
There was undoubtedly an irony in McLaren having the world ‘ultrafast’ on the sidepods of the MP4-28 as the car looked a handful to drive throughout the weekend. He was set for points but his tyres degraded following the safety car period. The team is sliding rapidly and it isn’t inconceivable that STR could usurp them.
6 | Sergio Perez | Vodafone McLaren Mercedes | Ret | 6/10
Perez was enjoying a fairly strong race – considering the equipment at his disposal – until he became the final victim of the tyre explosions. He did well to hang on to his car but the damage to the sidepods was so great that McLaren retired the Mexican on safety grounds.
7 | Kimi Raikkonen | Lotus | 5th | 8/10
It was a typically competitive race for the Finn at a circuit where the Lotus wasn’t expected to be too strong. Raikkonen completed a fairly methodical race but lost out towards the end when Lotus opted not to pit behind the safety car, costing Raikkonen a certain podium.
8 | Romain Grosjean | Lotus | Ret | 7/10
Grosjean got away well but again drew the attention on himself when he made contact with Webber at Abbey. It’s difficult to lay the blame at the Frenchman’s feet but it was an unfortunate moment. He was on course for a top 10 finish but retired following a front wing issue, meaning that it’s now been four races since Grosjean last scored a point.
9 | Nico Rosberg | Mercedes | 1st | 9/10
You can’t say that Rosberg was the fastest driver at Silverstone but he was in prime position to pick up the soils when others faltered. A slow start meant that he was beaten to Abbey by Vettel and he soon began losing pace to the leading duo. He started to take the fight to Vettel but with his compatriot’s demise, we’ll never know how that could have played out.
10 | Lewis Hamilton | Mercedes | 4th | 10/10
This was one of those weekends when the real Hamilton returned. At a circuit where braking is less of an issue, Hamilton flew on Saturday to take pole position by a comfortable margin. He was gapping Vettel when the tyre let go and he should be given credit for controlling his car and returning to the pits. Charge through the field was electric.
11 | Nico Hulkenberg | Sauber | 10th | 8/10
Hulkenberg was fairly miserable on Thursday when asked about his prospects and the Sauber C32 looked little better out on track, twitching left, right and centre. After a run of miserable races, Hulkenberg put in a fighting drive at Silverstone to steal a deserved final point.
12 | Esteban Gutierrez | Sauber | 14th | 5/10
Gutierrez’s rookie struggles continue but at Silverstone it was always going to be a tough challenge. His qualifying pace could have been better but during the race he was always a little bit behind Hulkenberg, which mattered little when he suffered a front left failure under braking for Stowe.
14 | Paul di Resta | Force India | 9th | 7/10
Three times the Brit has worn a cap during a Grand Prix weekend and on all three occasions he’s had misfortune in qualifying. It must be cursed. But yet again he fought back in the race to secure another points finish and is slowly turning into an established midfield runner.
15 | Adrian Sutil | Force India | 7th | 7/10
Sutil was one driver to get a great start as he elevated himself to fourth place on the first lap. Hamilton’s failure meant that Sutil was in contention for a podium place but a poor strategy meant that he was helpless to defend during the closing stages and slipped to seventh.
16 | Pastor Maldonado | Williams | 11th | 6/10
Williams brought a raft of upgrades to Silverstone but they didn’t appear to bring the leap forward that was hoped. Maldonado made it through to Q2 but progressed no further and spent most of the race towards the back of the midfield. A maiden 2013 point was lost when he was elbowed out of the way by a charging Hulkenberg.
17 | Valtteri Bottas | Williams | 12th | 5/10
Bottas blamed a poor set-up for his struggles in both qualifying and the race as he was always a little bit behind team-mate Maldonado. A slow pit stop accentuated his woes and he reckons a point was possible with slightly better luck.
18 | Jean-Eric Vergne | Toro Rosso | Ret | 5/10
The final moments of Q2, this is your one lap to get a good car into the top 10 shootout. Conditions are perfect, there’s no traffic and you’re setting green sector times as you thread your way through Maggotts and Becketts. Then you dip a wheel onto the grass, lose valuable time and the lap is gone. On such fine margins can futures be decided…
19 | Daniel Ricciardo | Toro Rosso | 8th | 8/10
One Australian out, one Australian in at Red Bull? It’s possible, particularly after a weekend in which Ricciardo was strong from the outset. Fifth in qualifying was followed by strong pace throughout the race at Silverstone although he slipped back to eighth place once his tyres went off.
20 | Charles Pic | Caterham | 15th | 8/10
Pic was the unfortunate driver to find the barrier during a soaking wet first practice session. But the quiet Frenchman bounced back to pump in a stellar qualifying lap and followed it up with a strong race performance in which he shadowed the back of the midfield.
21 | Giedo van der Garde | Caterham | 18th | 4/10
He was a long way down on Pic in qualifying but he didn’t push too hard due to his five place grid penalty. The race wasn’t brilliant as he didn’t possess the pace of Pic nor could he deal with a struggling Max Chilton, despite having fresh tyres. One to forget.
22 | Jules Bianchi | Marussia | 16th | 6/10
The Marussia didn’t seem to have the pace of fellow backmarkers Caterham so Bianchi did well to get within a couple of tenths of compatriot Pic. He easily had the advantage over team-mate Chilton and it was a competent race from Bianchi.
23 | Max Chilton | Marussia | 18th | 4/10
Chilton has rarely troubled team-mate Bianchi but even by his standards the deficit to the Frenchman after qualifying was enormous. He made a good start but was unable to contend with Pic and Bianchi, but did well to fend off Van der Garde’s charge at the end.