An unpredictable qualifying in mixed conditions and a sensational race meant this past weekend’s British Grand Prix was probably the most exciting of the 2022 Formula 1 season so far.
And while some drivers will be sharing the post-weekend jubilation with the fans, not every driver had as many reasons to celebrate.
Edd Straw casts a close eye over the performances of the 20 drivers across the 10th round of the 2022 season.
After each grand prix, The Race will rate each driver’s weekend with a mark out of 10.
An average mark is 5 out of 10, so that score is indicative of a decent drive given the high standard of drivers in F1.
For a more in-depth explanation, read our outline of the system.
Started: 2nd Finished: 7th
Seemed destined for pole position, and indeed had completed more than half of what should have been the quickest lap when he had to lift for the Leclerc-inspired yellow flags. Without that incident, it’s a near-certainty he would have been quickest.
Once ahead of Sainz, an easy run to victory seemed assured. But he picked up some debris from the AlphaTauri collision, which left him on a damage limitation exercise. He did that well, finishing seventh despite having to resort to some robust tactics in battle at times.
Verdict: What should have been pole and a win turned into a strong if robust, salvage job – hence the high rating.
Started: 4th Finished: 2nd
Always looked a big step behind Verstappen on wet pace, so fourth place on the grid was a solid performance for him after a so-so final lap. But there was frustration about the way his final run played out.
An early stop for a nose change left Perez playing catch up. He did that very effectively and used the pace of the Red Bull to good effect, avoiding getting bogged down. That meant he was in the thick of it when the race restarted, battling his way past Hamilton and Leclerc – getting his elbows out along the way – to bag second place.
Verdict: His pace wasn’t that strong compared to Verstappen, but he recovered well in the race.
Started: 5th Finished: 3rd
Looked to be a front-row threat but he felt that the decision to back off on his penultimate lap, and then go for it on the final lap hurt him given he felt the conditions deteriorated and he lost tyre temperature.
Lost a little ground in the early stages having slipped behind Norris but soon started to haul himself into contention with the Ferraris. A couple of seconds lost in his pitstop didn’t help, but any chance of victory evaporated with a difficult restart after the safety car – although he did create the moment of the race when he passed Perez and Leclerc as they squabbled in one go at Club.
Verdict: Pace was strong and the result was good but a so-so restart eliminated any victory hopes.
Started: 8th Finished: DNF
Russell felt he was at his most confident in Q1, but by the time he got to Q3, he was struggling more. Time lost to a mistake at Turn 3 put him on the back foot early on his final lap, leaving him seventh. He believed the error cost him two or perhaps three places.
Russell didn’t get a great launch, partly down to starting on hards. He then drifted a little to the left, unaware Gasly was coming through and made contact with the AlphaTauri. That gave him a puncture, but as he required outside assistance to get back to the pits he wasn’t allowed to restart
Verdict: Underachieved a little in qualifying and had a brief race.
Started: 3rd Finished: 4th
A spin on his final Q3 lap coming onto the Hanger Straight meant he didn’t improve on his final flier – which was set to be his quickest, and faster than Sainz before the mistake. Before the error, he looked set for second behind Verstappen.
Escaped his first-lap clash with Perez with some light endplate damage that cost him five points of downforce. But he was still quick and looked on target to win having been let past Sainz and having stayed ahead of Hamilton through the pitstops.
But being left out on ageing hards under the safety car cost him as he was shuffled back to fourth.
Verdict: Very quick but unlucky, while also a little rough around the edges with his qualifying spin and first lap clash.
Started: 1st Finished: 1st
The fact Sainz was as surprised as anyone to have bagged his first pole position reveals much about the kind of qualifying session he had.
Having flirted with elimination in Q2 having struggled to get his tyres up to temperature in the best of conditions before improving in the nick of time, he had a slightly untidy final Q3 lap but thanks to keeping it together and others either making bigger mistakes or being unlucky, that was enough for pole.
This was a rollercoaster race for Sainz, who lost the lead at the first start (with a tyre-grip disadvantage), held onto it at the second then lost it again when he went off coming out of Becketts and into Chapel.
Verstappen’s problem handed him back the lead, but Sainz didn’t quite have Leclerc’s pace and was eventually ordered to let him past. After understandably rejecting Ferrari’s request for him to be rear gunner, got back into the lead at the safety car restart to bag his first F1 win.
Verdict: He’s had far stronger weekends, but it’s hard to argue with the on-paper results.
Started: 14th Finished: 13th
Made it to Q2 thanks to a last-lap improvement after changing to a fresh set of intermediates. But made a tentative start to Q2, then made an error, meaning he didn’t produce the pace he might have in the best of the conditions. That added up to 14th.
Made little progress in the race, with any hope of points evaporating with his short stint on hards prior to making a second stop for softs. He did lose the DRS after lap 31, but even with six retirements he never looked a points threat.
Verdict: Bafflingly far off Norris’s pace.
Started: 6th Finished: 6th
Looked quick in the dry practice sessions but was also formidable in the wet, making Q3 comfortably and putting it sixth at the head of the midfield pack. After a couple of mixed-bag qualifying sessions – in Montreal through no fault of his own – this was a return to form.
Spent much of the race on track for fifth place, only to lose out to Alonso thanks to McLaren spending too long considering whether to bring him into the pits. Norris was eventually given a very late call and wisely realised he couldn’t make the pit entry, meaning he had to stop next time around – dropping him behind Alonso.
Verdict: Looked on top of the car all weekend and only McLaren’s strategic indecisiveness meant he didn’t get the best possible race result.
Started: 15th Finished: DNF
Ocon couldn’t do any better than slowest in Q2 thanks to a lack of deployment from the battery, which team principal Otmar Szafnauer put down to “the battery being too cold for optimal performance”.
Ocon was able to take the restart despite being torpedoed by Albon at Abbey at the first start. He was then on course for what his Alpine team reckoned could have been seventh place when a fuel pump problem forced him out.
Verdict: Denied certain points and was close to Alonso’s pace.
Started: 7th Finished: 5th
There were moments in qualifying when it appeared he could do better than seventh, but thanks to timing concerns he ended up splitting his battery power across two push laps on his final run. Without that, he would likely have been a place or two higher, although seventh was still a good result for the machinery.
A straightforward but well-executed race for Alonso. He took possession of sixth place early on after reclaiming the spot Gasly took from him through Brooklands and Luffield on the restart lap. Alonso was on target to finish there for much of the race, especially given Perez’s recovery meant Alonso’s spell in fifth in the second half of the first stint was always temporary.
Thanks to McLaren delaying Norris’s stop under the safety car, sixth turned into fifth and he lurked menacingly behind the Hamilton/Leclerc/Perez fight eager to capitalise on opportunities that ultimately didn’t present themselves.
Verdict: A fine, if compromised, qualifying, and well-executed race.
Started: 11th Finished: DNF
Had a slight bias towards wet conditions with an extra Gurney flap, and did a solid job to take 11th in a car that wasn’t working well at Silverstone even though he will have been disappointed to miss out on the last Q3 slot to Latifi’s slower Williams.
Survived his involvement in the Zhou crash to take the restart and was in a promising seventh place during what was effectively the first stint when Tsunoda’s overtaking attempt at Village went badly wrong. He later retired after being given the meatball flag for rear-end damage.
Verdict: Did a good job with a car that wasn’t top 10 on pace and wasn’t at fault for the collision that ruined his race.
Started: 13th Finished: 14th
Had a set-up slightly more biased towards dry conditions in terms of downforce levels, although a tidier second push lap in Q2 before the rain intensified would have yielded stronger pace.
His race started promisingly, climbing from 11th on the restart grid to eighth behind team-mate Gasly early on. But his ill-advised attempt to pass on the inside of Village resulted in him losing the rear and clattering his team-mate, condemning himself to a hobbled last thanks to damage. His defence that he didn’t expect Gasly to close the door held no water.
Verdict: Solid in qualifying but threw away a good result for himself and Gasly with his blunderous overtaking attempt.
Started: 18th Finished: 9th
Had to abort his first run without a flying lap thanks to visibility problems that necessitated a helmet change. He also changed tyres, which meant that his inters were past their peak in the best of the conditions. On top of that, struggled for grip and tyre temperature, but with an ideal strategy perhaps could have nicked a place in Q2.
Rear-ended Albon at the first start in the wake of the Zhou crash but was able to take the restart, sticking with softs and dropping to last after making an early stop at the end of lap six.
A long stint on mediums got him up to seventh, where he looked set to finish before the safety car intervened. He rightly pitted, but regretted taking mediums, which allowed the soft-shod Verstappen and Schumacher to pass him in the closing stages.
Verdict: Performed well and would likely have been two places higher without the safety car.
Started: 20th Finished: 11th
Struggled for grip on his first run but switched to a second set a little too late. The result was an outlap that started with letting a series of cars past and therefore cold tyres. The Aston Martin didn’t look quick, but Stroll couldn’t get the temperature back into the tyres and ended up last.
Didn’t make much progress in the race, opting to take both starts on mediums and then switching to hards but he struggled with understeer throughout. When the safety car came out, he was 12th and pressuring Latifi and despite opting for mediums – compared to the Williams driver taking softs – he was able to pass him for 11th.
Verdict: Not at Vettel’s level and never looked like scoring points despite the attrition.
Started: 10th Finished: 12th
A combination of a good final lap in Q1 having come in for fresh intermediates and decent pace on his first couple of push laps in the second stage of qualifying in the best of the conditions gave Latifi, driving the old-specification Williams, a well-deserved Q3 debut.
Unfortunately, he ran a little wide on his first push lap at Abbey and spun through the gravel, touching the barrier with the right rear. He had another wobble and took to the runoff there next time around, then after another attempt was called into the pits, meaning he didn’t set a time.
Held the eighth place he restarted in during the first stint, keeping Bottas behind, but things were harder after he pitted for mediums and was no longer in a DRS train. That allowed Ocon, then the Haas drivers and, after the late restart, Stroll to get ahead and ensure there was no points finish.
Verdict: Executed Q1 and Q2 superbly and did well to delay the inevitable plunge out of the points in the race.
Started: 16th Finished: DNF
Albon felt comfortable driving the only Williams equipped with its major aerodynamic upgrade even in wet conditions, but after changing to fresh intermediates in Q1 his final run didn’t go well. He struggled for grip, particularly after what he felt was an unnecessary cooldown lap, with his final lap his quickest, but not quick enough.
In the wake of the Zhou accident, Albon was rear-ended by Vettel and nosed into the pitwall, then spun towards Abbey and collected Ocon’s car. Zhou was sent to the medical centre, then Coventry Hospital for checks before being cleared and released
Verdict: A lucklessly brief race means he can only be judged by his disappointing qualifying.
Started: 9th Finished: DNF
Made it through to Q3 in wet conditions for the second event in succession. The key to his success was getting in a decent time in the best of the conditions early in Q2, something Bottas wasn’t able to do.
Zhou was minding his own business after a so-so getaway when he was launched into a high-speed airborne crash by Russell’s Mercedes, which was pitched left after contact with Gasly. Zhou cleared the tyre barrier but not the debris fence but was cleared by the medical centre and had reason to be thankful for the halo.
Verdict: Can only be judged on Friday and his fine Saturday given his brief, luckless race.
Started: 12th Finished: DNF
Struggled with tyre temperature early in Q2, which meant he wasn’t on top 10 pace, and therefore didn’t have the grip to improve when the rain started to intensify but others did have the temperature to generate that grip. The result was a Q2 exit.
Ran in the points through the first stint, albeit without being able to pass Latifi. But he then lost upshifts and was forced to retire after 20 laps.
Verdict: Qualifying and his brief race were solid, but unspectacular.
Started: 17th Finished: 10th
There was nothing particularly wrong with Magnusen’s Q1, save for the understeer that meant he was struggling badly for front end. Got in two push laps after switching to a second set of inters in Q1 and was comfortably quicker than Schumacher, but it wasn’t enough for Q2.
Spent the first stint after the restart stuck in a DRS train, mostly behind Ricciardo, with Schumacher overtaking him through Brooklands and Luffield.
Magnussen was happier on his second set of mediums after overcutting Ricciardo and was behind Schumacher in 10th when Ocon stopped and the safety car was deployed.
He was called into the pits for a double stack pitstop, but overruled it given he was content with the state of his mediums. Took the restart eighth and was quickly shuffled back to 10th by Verstappen and Schumacher, admitting after the race that it would have been wise to pit for softs as planned.
Verdict: Unusually, was a little off his team-mate’s pace in dry conditions but drove a solid race.
Started: 19th Finished: 8th
Schumacher described the car as “sub-optimal to drive” thanks to the steering wheel being 10 degrees out of alignment anti-clockwise. He had to make the best of it but even with a change to fresh intermediates wasn’t a Q1 threat and ended up just over half-a-second off Magnussen.
Briefly dropped to last after behind passed by Stroll, but made good progress in the first stint and pulled off an excellent overtaking move on Magnussen through Brooklands and Luffield along the way.
Undercut his way past Ricciardo and showed good pace after switching to hards, overtaking Latifi, and was chasing Verstappen when the safety car came out. Took the restart on softs, passing Vettel but just losing out in his battle with the obstinate Verstappen.
Verdict: First points are a justified reward for a fine race drive on a weekend when Haas was far from its best.