2020 Russian Grand Prix: Driver Ratings

Valtteri Bottas won the Russian Grand Prix for a second time on Sunday with a dominant drive, after his teammate Lewis Hamilton picked up two five-seconds penalties for a practice start infringement.

Hamilton led away from pole but was soon hit with the penalties, which handed Bottas the initiative and a first win since the opening race of the season.

The six-time world champion recovered to third, with Max Verstappen once again splitting the Mercedes in second.

Here is how the drivers rated:

Valtteri Bottas – 8

This was a good race performance from Bottas, who crushed any hope Hamilton had of a comeback with an excellent first stint. However, he was easily outqualified by Hamilton and started behind Max Verstappen in the Red Bull, before being essentially handed the win due to his teammate’s penalties.

Max Verstappen – 9

A very good drive from the Dutchman who kept Bottas honest, even if he never had the pace to catch him. He also outqualified the Finn on what is supposed to be one of his favourite tracks.

Lewis Hamilton – 7

You cannot really fault the driving, other than his failure to get through to Q3 on the mediums after getting his lap deleted during his first Q2 run. Both his laps in final qualifying were brilliant though and easily beat Bottas’ best time, and he looked to have good pace early on until he was given the penalties. It seems that only this kind of mistake can see him come unstuck, but he must be more careful to avoid further silly errors in the future.

Sergio Perez – 9

A very well-timed reminder of his qualities, especially on a weekend when the team admitted that only his teammate Lance Stroll had the upgraded package. This was an excellent qualifying performance from the Mexican, who was then able to recover from a poor start to finish a deserved fourth.

Daniel Ricciardo – 7

A really strange race from Ricciardo who made a great start and moved into third, only to then make an error and fall back to fifth. He then made another mistake when making a team-sanctioned pass on Esteban Ocon, which earned him a penalty. As ever this season the pace was good, but like Hamilton, the silly mistakes held him back.

Charles Leclerc – 8

Continues to outperform that Ferrari, even if he was a tad fortunate to get away without a penalty following his contact with Lance Stroll on the opening lap. Despite the struggles of his team this year, he has done nothing to damage his reputation as one of the quickest drivers out there.

Esteban Ocon – 6

Outqualified by Ricciardo once again, Ocon also struggled to match his teammate in race trim. He got passed the Aussie on the opening lap, but then lacked pace and ended up finishing behind a slower Ferrari after being told to let his teammate through.

Daniil Kvyat – 8

Made the alternative strategy work and was even putting pressure on Ocon by the end of the race. Has recovered well since Pierre Gasly’s win in Italy and is showing his best form once again.

Pierre Gasly – 7

Battled well with Alex Albon and Lando Norris to secure a points finish, but the strategy did not quite play into his hands in the same way it did with his teammate.

Alex Albon – 6

He recovered to earn a point from a 15th on the grid start, but neither his qualifying performance nor race pace was good enough. The podium in Mugello will have offered him some respite from criticism, but this result will pile a lot of that back on his shoulders.

Antonio Giovinazzi – 8

Probably his best race of the season, the Italian was quicker than teammate Kimi Raikkonen in qualifying and then raced well to a spot just outside the points. The pressure is on to save his seat with Mick Schumacher in the waiting, so he needs to get the better of Raikkonen in the closing rounds of the season.

Kevin Magnussen – 7

His race pace has been strong all season and he continues to compare well with his teammate Romain Grosjean. Looked like he was on for the points for a while, but probably delivered the best result possible.

Sebastien Vettel – 5

Another weekend to forget for the four-time world champion, with Vettel once again looking ill-at-ease in the Ferrari. The German needs to get on top of his qualifying form, which is forcing him to start too far down the grid in a car that struggles to overtake.

Kimi Raikkonen – 5

A weekend to forget after a botched second run in qualifying left him starting on the back row of the grid. Made places up in the race with a long opening stint, but never looked like troubling the points.

Lando Norris – 4

One of the worst races in Formula 1 for the young McLaren driver, whose early strategy gamble simply didn’t pay off. Gave us a good battle to watch when he went wheel to wheel with Albon, Gasly and George Russell, but overall a really disappointing outing.

Nicholas Latifi – 7

Still way too far off his teammate over a single lap, but this was a quietly good race performance from the Canadian. Consistent and quick, he beat Russell and Grosjean to 16th place.

Romain Grosjean – 4

This has been a season of disappointment for the Frenchman and Sunday was no different. Almost made it out of Q1, but then fell rapidly in the race before requiring a late pit stop after colliding with a polystyrene bollard.

George Russell – 6

Some of his early racing and another Q2 appearance showed his potential, but his unwillingness to give up on battles with faster cars perhaps showed his inexperience. The lock-up while battling Albon and Norris ruined his strategy on a day where a better result than 18th was definitely possible.

Lance Stroll – 6

The Canadian was pretty unlucky all weekend, with Vettel ruining his chances of making Q3 and then the other Ferrari of Leclerc ending his race on lap one.

Carlos Sainz – 3

Great in qualifying once again, but crashing into the wall on lap one was a very silly mistake that could have seen him seriously injured.