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Hungarian Grand Prix 2021

Hungarian GP 2021 F1 Driver Ratings: Ocon, Vettel and Alonso star

Another thrilling round of the 2021 Formula 1 season saw Esteban Ocon become the 111th different driver to win a Formula 1 race. He beat Lewis Hamilton as Carlos Sainz rounded out the podium. RacingNews365.com rates the whole field and how they performed at the Hungarian Grand Prix.

Ocon Hungary win
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To news overview © Alpine

Esteban Ocon brilliantly won the Hungarian Grand Prix as early drama created a race that will go down as a classic. It was Ocon's maiden victory in F1 as he held off Sebastian Vettel who ended up being disqualified for not having enough fuel in his car to take a fuel sample.

Lewis Hamilton had a rollercoaster day to eventually end second which was enough to take the lead of the Drivers' Championship away from Max Verstappen who scored just one point. Carlos Sainz moved up into the podium places.

We have rated all 20 drivers based on their qualifying, sprint qualifying and race performances. Team errors such as a slow pit stop or a sub-optimal strategy do not affect our ratings as they are no fault of the drivers.

Our ratings solely look at how well the drivers got on at the Hungarian GP weekend.

Esteban Ocon 9/10

Started: 8th - Finished: 1st

To hold off a four-time world champion, knowing that you cannot make a mistake for over 60 laps for your first win in Formula 1 takes a mighty effort. That's exactly what Ocon managed to do despite having a slightly slower car than Vettel.

He took advantage of the lap one mayhem and kept a cool head all race with one of the drives of the season where he underlined his talent and why he has been touted as a potential future world champion in F1.

Ocon will be hoping it's the first of many wins.

Sebastian Vettel 8.5/10

Started: 10th - Finished: DQ

Vettel was unfortunately disqualified for not having enough fuel to take the mandatory one litre fuel sample after the race. But that doesn't affect his rating.

A few small errors possibly cost him the chance of being in a position to really attack Ocon but he put the Alpine driver under relentless pressure and the key moment of his race was actually not his fault when Aston Martin had a slightly tardy pit stop.

Vettel's outlap was brilliant to get close to Ocon despite the slow pit stop.

			© FIA
	© FIA

Lewis Hamilton 9/10

Started: 1st - Finished: 2nd

Hamilton's qualifying performance was perhaps underrated as he executed a great lap to take his first pole position for nearly three months.

In the race, he was in a tricky position where he did not have the ability to see what everyone else was doing when every running driver apart from him pitted at the end of the formation lap for the standing start restart.

It was a mistake but his drive through the field was superb when he switched onto the hard tyres. Knowing that Verstappen was in trouble, Hamilton played things relatively cautiously and nailed his overtakes when the opportunity arose.

Hamilton has not at his best this year but his form in Hungary was probably near peak Lewis Hamilton. A tremendous performance comeback.

Carlos Sainz 7.5/10

Started: 15th - Finished: 3rd

Sainz's driver error in Q2 was a blessing in disguise as he missed all of the mayhem that unfolded at the front of the field. His decision to go against Ferrari and run long in the first stint gave him the opportunity to fight for the podium.

The Spaniard drove a great race and took his fourth ever podium in Formula 1 due to Vettel's disqualification.

			© Ferrari
	© Ferrari

Fernando Alonso 8.5/10

Started: 9th - Finished: 4th

How Alonso kept Hamilton behind for so long is a mystery. Hamilton was over three seconds quicker and should have eased by but the wily old fox of Alonso positioned his car in his aggressive but fair defence.

This battle definitely helped Ocon to victory and Alonso showed why his racecraft is top notch.

Pierre Gasly 8/10

Started: 5th - Finished: 5th

Pierre Gasly was a victim of the Turn 1 chaos, except he managed to avoid getting hit but did end up at the back of the field.

Nevertheless, he came through the midfield very well and was much faster than teammate Yuki Tsunoda. Gasly also took the extra point for the fastest lap of the race for his efforts.

			© Red Bull Content Pool / Getty Images
	© Red Bull Content Pool / Getty Images

Yuki Tsunoda 7/10

Started: 16th - Finished: 6th

Tsunoda had a good drive to take his equal best result of the year. There were some more outbursts on the team radio but he kept things clean to pick up some crucial points for AlphaTauri.

A good day at the office for Tsunoda who needed to simply get through Sunday without any major mistakes following his crash on Friday.

Nicholas Latifi 7/10

Started: 18th - Finished: 7th

Another shock at the Hungarian Grand Prix was Nicholas Latifi scoring points, four points in fact as he finished in eighth place. Due to the madness at the start, Latifi was in third during the early stages of the race to underline how dramatic the opening laps were.

Latifi drove very maturely too, not cracking under the pressure of scoring his and the team's first points of the season.

			© Williams
	© Williams

George Russell 7/10

Started: 17th - Finished: 8th

George Russell finally scored his first points as a Williams driver, even though his actual drive probably wasn't as good as some performances when he finished outside of the top 10.

Perhaps more incredible is that he finished behind Latifi although they were on completely different strategies. Russell was very emotional after the race which shows how much he has wanted to score points for Williams. A great day for the team, one of their best Sundays for a few years.

Max Verstappen 7.5/10

Started: 3rd - Finished: 9th

Verstappen has been seriously unlucky this year and similarly to Silverstone, he did nothing wrong and was simply going about his business going into Turn 1.

His damage was very severe so there was not much he could do other than take a solitary point. In qualifying, he didn't hook up his Q3 runs but pole position was highly unlikely anyway. A deeply frustrating fortnight for Verstappen who is now six points behind Hamilton in the Drivers' Standings.

			© RacingNews365
	© RacingNews365

Kimi Raikkonen 6.5/10

Started: 13th - Finished: 10th

Arguably the biggest losers from Sunday were Alfa Romeo as Kimi Raikkonen endured a penalty for an unsafe release and poor strategy which proved very costly when both Williams drivers scored relatively major points.

Raikkonen had good pace too which will make things hurt even more because he had the pace for at least a top eight result.

Daniel Ricciardo 5.5/10

Started: 11th - Finished: 11th

It's difficult to rate Daniel Ricciardo's race but his damage was nowhere near as bad as Verstappen's yet there was a lack of fight from the Australian.

His qualifying was not good too as he missed out on Q3 and continues to scratch his head as to how he is losing so much time to teammate Lando Norris. Turning this form around will take something special from Ricciardo as he seems lost at the moment.

Mick Schumacher 6/10

Started: 20th - Finished: 12th

After failing to participate in qualifying due to a crash in practice three, Mick Schumacher made up for it with a valiant effort in the race.

Schumacher looked like he was really enjoying being able to fight other cars wheel to wheel and he held his own for a long time. It was Haas' best chance of points this year but not even Schumacher could hold back some wounded vehicles but he certainly gave it a great go.

			© Haas
	© Haas

Antonio Giovinazzi 5/10

Started: 17th - Finished: 13th

Antonio Giovinazzi's chances of some big points went away when he received a 10 second stop/go penalty for speeding in the pit lane.

It's a driver error and it might have major implications as Williams jumped Alfa Romeo in the Constructors' Championship.

Nikita Mazepin N/A

Started: 19th - Finished: DNF

It's pretty much impossible to rate Nikita Mazepin's weekend because we have no reference to his teammate in qualifying and he retired due to a pit stop accident with Kimi Raikkonen.

At RacingNews365.com we try to avoid a non-rating and this is the first time we have had to use it this year.

Lando Norris 7/10

Started: 7th - Finished: DNF

Norris didn't have his vintage qualifying form but it was still very good and he was very unfortunate to get hit by Bottas.

			© Red Bull Contentpool
	© Red Bull Contentpool

Valtteri Bottas 3.5/10

Started: 2nd - Finished: DNF

A five grid place penalty for Bottas is arguably a fairly light punishment as he managed to take out Norris and both Red Bulls by braking far too late in the wet conditions.

It's a shame because Bottas was having a good weekend but threw it all away with a significant mistake.

Sergio Perez 6.5/10

Started: 4th - Finished: DNF

Sergio Perez never looked on it throughout the Hungarian GP event but we will never know if he would be able to turn things around during the race due to Bottas' error.

From what we did see, Perez was someway off the pace compared to Verstappen all weekend, more so than usual.

Charles Leclerc 7/10

Started: 7th - Finished: DNF

It feels like Leclerc would have shone in a race such as how Sunday's Hungarian GP played out but we will never know how it would have gone for the Monegasque driver who was taken out by Lance Stroll.

Lance Stroll 3.5/10

Started: 12th - Finished: DNF

In similar fashion to Bottas, Stroll completely got things wrong going into Turn 1. He tried his best to save it by taking to the grass but was unsuccessful as Leclerc was hit hard by the Aston Martin driver.

F1 2021 Hungarian Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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