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Rate Vettel as driver
Is the best, and becomes better. 25%  25%  [ 49 ]
Is roughly at level with Hamilton and Alonso. 44%  44%  [ 88 ]
Is good, but a step below the otther two. 27%  27%  [ 53 ]
Till he don´t drives the best car is nonsense say. 4%  4%  [ 8 ]
Total votes : 198
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 23, 2012 9:59 pm 
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I see lately a trend to valuate better the reigning champion skills.
The question is: Have we got the indicative data to do a just driver rating?
No matter the car, luck and team itself, driver alone, How good is he?

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 23, 2012 10:37 pm 
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I don't think you can say he is outright the best, so I chose roughly at level with Hamilton and Alonso. But in reality I think he's slightly better than Hamilton. Compared to Alonso, this is how I explained it to my Alonso-loving friend.

Say there was 5 categories you looked at in a driver. Alonso might score 75 74 72 70 75, whereas Vettel would score maybe a 95 83 67 62 75. The difference in numbers is over-exaggerated to get the point across, but I think Vettel is slightly better than Alonso in some areas, and slightly weaker than Alonso in others. When it all boils down to it though, they are almost equals.


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 23, 2012 10:37 pm 
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Double post.


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 23, 2012 10:38 pm 
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Voted option 2, he's still has a lot of years left and he seems to improve as the seasons pass. It's difficult to say who's the best IMO though. Raikkonen is definitely up there for me too


Last edited by MikeV1987 on Sun Dec 23, 2012 10:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 23, 2012 10:42 pm 
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There is no valid option. Worse than Alonso and Hamilton?
Who decided that it's just those 2 who would be better?

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 23, 2012 10:52 pm 
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I said roughly on the same level, but I personally think he's slightly lower than both. Of course he is still very young, so i think with a couple more years of experience he will be much better.

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 23, 2012 11:32 pm 
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LITE992 wrote:
I said roughly on the same level, but I personally think he's slightly lower than both. Of course he is still very young, so i think with a couple more years of experience he will be much better.


Exactly this IMO :thumbup:

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2012 7:02 am 
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SwSpeed wrote:
There is no valid option. Worse than Alonso and Hamilton?
Who decided that it's just those 2 who would be better?

What option do you miss?
Usually accepted for most, the best ones are Ham, Alo. Everyone gets the right to dissent, but personally i think is true.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2012 7:14 am 
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SwSpeed wrote:
There is no valid option. Worse than Alonso and Hamilton?
Who decided that it's just those 2 who would be better?

Nick Fry


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2012 8:38 am 
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Where's the "slightly better than Hamilton and on par with Alonso" option?

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2012 8:43 am 
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Where's worse than rogro ;-) champion of champions 2012


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2012 9:31 am 
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Vettel is a brilliant driver and in years to come, will get even better. He is very dedicated, determined, focused and hard working. Those traits combined with his natural talent and intelligence will likely quicken his journey and we already see him on the road to fulfilling his potential.

He is the best on the grid at the moment, in combination with his equipment. Vettel has gotten the potential from most of his cars on the whole, from his tests and one off with BMW to his STRFs and RB cars, so this is no surprise. However, his sustained performance with his RB cars is quite remarkable; it has allowed him to break many records at a young age and pocket 3 driver's championships. All that and he is still young, gaining experience, continuing to mature and getting better every year. That is why he is already among the greats statistically; and why he will definitely be considered among the greats from a historical perspective.

There is no need to compare him to anyone else. He is on his own trajectory in the sport. His achievements speak for themselves.

How good is he? So far, he is the best we've ever seen at his age in the sport. However, setting age aside, his achievements are brilliant and remarkable in and of themselves - for any driver at any age.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2012 9:39 am 
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He's my favorite driver but I don't think he's the best. In terms of driving skills, Alonso has more experience and might be a little bit better..? I'm not sure about Lewis. He's no doubt a very skilled driver but I don't get why some people think he's a god or something. Seb still has a lot more years to mature and improve and I'm looking forward to those years. There also a few midfielders who I'm sure will show tremendous skill in the near future.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2012 9:41 am 
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I voted same as Alonso and Hamilton. But the way I see these 3 is that they aren't better or worse than each other. They all have their strengths and weaknesses, but in the overall picture all 3 are far and away better than the others. I would add Kimi to this list as well but thats it.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2012 9:58 am 
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i think he is better than hamilton, kimi and button and equal with alonso. however in a few years im sure he will be regarded as one of the best ever ( best ever if he were to die mid race for some weird reason)


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2012 10:51 am 
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Voted 1
Fastest car/non fastest car
EBD/ no EBD
Leader of the pack/the hunter/the hunted
From the front/From the pitlane
Pirellis/Bridgestones
Against multiple WDCs in good cars too
Against Mind games/politics/penalties

He's done it in multiple situations

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2012 10:56 am 
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He's consecutive triple world Champion good.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2012 11:01 am 
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He is better than Damon Hill, but no where near Alonso, Ham, Kimi.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2012 11:04 am 
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Vettel has yet to reach his peak , Hamilton is almost there and Alonso has reached it and most likely will slide down over the next few years.
Vettel is better at 25 , than alonso and hamilton were at that age.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2012 11:10 am 
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Damoclesfall wrote:
SwSpeed wrote:
There is no valid option. Worse than Alonso and Hamilton?
Who decided that it's just those 2 who would be better?

What option do you miss?
Usually accepted for most, the best ones are Ham, Alo. Everyone gets the right to dissent, but personally i think is true.


That is your opinion which usually does not reflect the rest of the population. :smug:

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2012 11:21 am 
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Three consecutive WDC trophies is not luck or just the car.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2012 11:48 am 
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3 x WDC in by far the best car in 2 seasons, and the best team in the other.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2012 12:00 pm 
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He's well rounded, but I feel that Hamilton and Alonso are still ahead at the moment. I don't think any of them have reached their peak yet, Alonso is getting there though.

I think there's still an aspect of Vettel, which is that he might not be as mentally tough yet, or he doesn't have the mentality to deal with some situations. When he was driving the 2011 red bull, with the EBD, he was absolutely dominant. However with the EBD ban, he dipped a bit and lost to Webber a few times in qualy. Seb also got frustrated with the team, remember "do something!", and also other drivers, e.g. the cucumber. He didn't look that happy either.

But when Red Bull added the coanda exhaust and the DDRS, Vettel seemed to be miles ahead of Webber again. He was driving with a newfound confidence, and won 4 races in a row, which contributed greatly to his title.

When Alonso, Hamilton or Kimi finds themselves in a similar situation where the car is bad, they seem to have a more gritty attitude. In that they seemed to be prepared for a bad result and seek to maximise whatever they can get. I do think Vettel has learned massively from this season though, so we might see a different guy next year.

Obviously these views are subjective as well.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2012 1:38 pm 
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He and Alonso dominated 2012, so as choice 2 is wrong I had to go woth no 1.
And he is the youngest off the top 4 so his curve is going up


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2012 1:59 pm 
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bourbon19 wrote:
Vettel is a brilliant driver and in years to come, will get even better. He is very dedicated, determined, focused and hard working. Those traits combined with his natural talent and intelligence will likely quicken his journey and we already see him on the road to fulfilling his potential.

He is the best on the grid at the moment, in combination with his equipment. Vettel has gotten the potential from most of his cars on the whole, from his tests and one off with BMW to his STRFs and RB cars, so this is no surprise. However, his sustained performance with his RB cars is quite remarkable; it has allowed him to break many records at a young age and pocket 3 driver's championships. All that and he is still young, gaining experience, continuing to mature and getting better every year. That is why he is already among the greats statistically; and why he will definitely be considered among the greats from a historical perspective.

There is no need to compare him to anyone else. He is on his own trajectory in the sport. His achievements speak for themselves.

How good is he? So far, he is the best we've ever seen at his age in the sport. However, setting age aside, his achievements are brilliant and remarkable in and of themselves - for any driver at any age.

Well in his one of performance for BMW he was half a second slower than Heidfeld.

He's obviously top tier, his performances against Webber are testamount to that, but what i may find disappointing in the future is a structure similar to the Schumacher/Ferrari years where in the dominant years he was never paired with a driver who might have troubled him, not until Kimi in 2007 but then he retired.

His partnership with Webber is a very comfortable scenario for both himself and the team, a partnership with say Hamilton, which Hamilton wanted, might have been somewhat more troublesome for both.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2012 2:01 pm 
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Option 2. There is very little to choose between Vettel, Alonso and Hamilton and trying to rank them by ability is just splitting hairs quite frankly. If someone held a gun to my head (or started a "Rank the drivers" thread ;) ) I would say Alonso then Hamilton then Vettel but you could justifiably put them in any order. Having a 3 way scrap between them this year has been fantastic and it's just a shame that next years title fight will be spoiled somewhat by one of them most likely being in a car that won't allow him to get involved at the front on a regular basis.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 25, 2012 2:00 am 
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Nice to see 74% of the voters giving Vettel the credit he deserves.

I voted option 2 as I still believe Alonso is the best and Lewis and Vettel are good enough to be considered in the same class IMO.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 25, 2012 5:56 am 
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Good enough to win 3 Titles in Succession against an extremely talented grid of drivers.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 25, 2012 10:33 am 
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Vettelmessi wrote:
i think he is better than hamilton, kimi and button and equal with alonso. however in a few years im sure he will be regarded as one of the best ever ( best ever if he were to die mid race for some weird reason)


Silly comment. Some people just don't get it.

Senna was regarded as the best ever before his death by quite a few in the know. Sir Stirling Moss put him equal with Fangio before Tamburello..

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 25, 2012 10:57 pm 
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He is good, and he WILL get better

Let's just hope someone else becomes champion before Vettel becomes Schumi in the 2000s

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 2:26 am 
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purchville wrote:
Vettelmessi wrote:
i think he is better than hamilton, kimi and button and equal with alonso. however in a few years im sure he will be regarded as one of the best ever ( best ever if he were to die mid race for some weird reason)


Silly comment. Some people just don't get it.

Senna was regarded as the best ever before his death by quite a few in the know. Sir Stirling Moss put him equal with Fangio before Tamburello..

I think people who make those comments must not have been following F1 at that time

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 3:27 am 
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How good is he at what? For me, he is the best at managing his team which means getting their absolute best 100% of the time, preserving the right attitude in front of them at all times (being positive when things don't go your way, focussing on what you can control and not worrying about what you can't, consistency, and being reliable in terms of hardly ever letting them down). As a driver myself, I say there is no such thing as "best" in actual driving skill in a formula that puts everyone in a different car, different team, and at different ages, with changing regulations. His particularly strong skills IN the car are the ability to do what is necessary, when it is necessary - like putting that last lap together in qualifying, or getting a key pass done quickly - knowing and performing to the exact limits of the car on high fuel, and having an exceptionally good feel for how far you can push each tire and for how long, which comes from an ability to feel and manipulate the car's balance, and which is also what makes a driver fast in anything. Paired with his thoughtful driving/mental capacity in the car, that team management and reliability make him the all-around best competitor. He also has an unwavering commitment to the sport - no manager, turns down extra money to avoid further distractions, does everything he needs to to stay focussed. His weaknesses are impatience when things don't go his way, and that bit of ego that makes him ignore calls to slow down. It hasn't yet, but will one day cost him something significant.

Because your question inherently includes a comparison, I'll give you my analysis of the other THREE as well.

Lewis' biggest asset is his real speed. He's really never slow. He has a good positive outlook as well. I don't think he is as thoughtful behind the wheel though - he seems to drive more on instinct and feel, which while it makes him very fast, makes him susceptible to the kind of race craft clumsiness we saw a lot of in 2011 and at times this year. It also makes it harder to move up the grid when his car isn't performing as he'd like it to. He always seems like a little kid to me - like he sees the car ahead and thinks "oh, i can get him!" and goes on his merry way, but leaves him a bit lacking just in terms of progressing through a race. While I believe he THINKS he is completely committed to the job, his public lifestyle is a detractor and you can see that in his performances - not just personally, but in his team (McLaren). I have no evidence because I don't follow him as closely as Seb, but Lewis seems a bit too interested in what other people think.

Fernando's talent lies in his cool head. He is of course very quick in terms of natural talent, but its patience and willingness to wait and see what happens around him that gets him those crucial podiums all the time. He's never going to take a big risk and lose out. That's how he is always able to capitalize on the misfortune or mistakes of others ahead of him. But to me, that patience is also a weakness. I would like him more if he showed a bit more get up and go, and didn't always wait for others to hand him goodies. He definitely "tries harder" when there is less on the line for him - in 2011 he raced harder than he did this year, and I think that's what ultimately cost him in the end. Felipe showed there was enough pace in the Ferrari to drive aggressively and succeed, but Fernando patiently waited instead. He has an exceptional ability to read the cars around him at the start, which means he almost always makes up places there. He can thank his systems engineer for ensuring the car has the legs to do what he wants at that crucial time. He's very smart, and that helps him tune out the distractions, but I think his little mind games, while beautifully executed, are distractions to him as well.

Kimi has the best race craft of the lot, and it comes from the same kind of understanding of the balance of the car and how to push the tires and when. He also understands what the cars are going to do around him, and that always helps in deciding how to place the car. I know that he is a lot more involved in his job than he appears in the media, but I do think he tries as hard as it suits him and that's it. He is the one driver whose lifestyle away from the track has little relevance to performance on track, and that means he has a work ethic that allows him to compartmentalize and prioritize. I think he's every bit as good in most capacities as Sebastian, except managing the team around him, and that deficiency comes from keeping himself separate and never really making a team his family.

They are all GREAT racers, but the current formula in the sport rewards the whole competitor and the team around him, not just skill behind the wheel.

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 5:00 pm 
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A few things in that I disagree with. First of all let me get it out of the way… Vettel is a sensationally talented driver on par with the very best in the sport today, and Red Bulls sudden rising from the ashes as if from nowhere once he came on board is evident of his immense ability.

However, he has shown he is prone to making silly mistakes just as easily and as often as Hamilton. As well, simply having the best car isn't good enough for Red Bull and they continuously push the envelope and bend the rules to make their package even better, skating along and perhaps over the edge with things like their flexi-wing which was clearly in violation of the rules but Newey's craftiness was able to get it to do so only under race-type aero loads but was also designed to hold up to the stresses placed on the parts via the FIA structural load testing. I agree the rules are there and it is up to the engineers to technically find a way around them, but when it is this clear and this blatant, the FIA needs to step in and put a stop to it rather than simply say the parts held up to the tests and therefore it is legal. They might pass the loads tests, but when the wing end plates are clearly a couple inches lower while on track and flip-flopping around and it's obvious there is a competitive advantage gained from such a circumvention of the rules, I think it needs to be nipped in the bud. The team liking Vettel comes from his disposition. While he is a fierce competitor and very demanding of his team, he is also a genuinely nice guy with a great sense of humor and is extremely likable and makes sure to let everyone on his team know how much he appreciates them and that sentiment is paid back in the form of hard work. Quite similar to Michael at Ferrari, only Vettel is not looked upon in quite the same light.

As for Hamilton, personal life did affect him greatly in 2011 as stated by the man himself (we all knew it before he said it) but outside of that, he has been a machine in that Cockpit and he has always been all business when strapped in. I am more than certain that outside of last year he has been 100% focussed on just the job before him which is working with the team to develop the car to where it needed to be and as well, he is ALWAYS working on his race craft, just as much as any other driver on the grid. The guy is all talent but he is indeed mentally tough as well, and this year he was indeed better than both Alonso and Vettel IMHO and were it not for huge mistakes by his team, he'd now be one of three 2-time WDC in the field. Sure he made a couple mistakes this year as he is not perfect, but outside of that he was IMHO, the class of the entire field. Alonso did do everything right as he needed to in order to give himself and his package the best chance of winning outside the last few races where he should have and could have been better, but in the end team mistakes and failures likely cost Hamilton a 2nd title as he was pretty much brilliant all year long.

Alonso seems cool headed at times, but I can assure you he is not exercising patience and biding his time. He is pushing just as hard as he feels he can given his equipment, and then figures out a way to squeeze a tad wee bit more speed out of it which means he's pushing to the very limit, just as much as both Vettel and Hamilton and it was fortunate that his pace was just fast enough to keep within the front runners early on, and slow enough to keep him a safe distance away from any mishaps up front so he can capitalize on any misfortunes suffered ahead. He is generally quite cerebral and level headed in the cockpit, but can also get a bit hot headed and hurt his efforts just like the other 2, as well as a few others in the field. They are after all human, and do experience emotions, and the addition of adrenaline at such speeds, combined with all the excitement of everything going on, they all have mental farts, and from what I've seen, the most non-level headed of the 3 has been Vettel IMHO. How many times do we see him wave his hands at a driver ahead when he can't get past, when the proper thing to do is keep both hands on the wheel and THINK of what he did and what the leading driver did to neutralize his efforts in order to set himself up for a smarter move to make the pass. This is something that leaves me scratching my head with Vettel more so than with any other driver and I think Rocky is great at calming his man down and reminding him he needs to gather himself and put his skills to use, which is exactly what great drivers sometimes need when in the heat of battle.

Kimi himself is no slouch but he's not he best of them either. He is among them and is one of the top 5 I'd say, but at times I think he doesn't push as hard as he possibly could, though this year I think he was guilty of that perhaps twice but I suspect it was due to how "hard pushing" bit him in the donkey early on in the season when he went from 2nd to 8th in a matter of a single lap. After that, he was a bit cautious ensuring the same thing didn't happen again and I think it cost him a few points in a few races this year.

To answer the OP's question as to "How good is Vettel?", I'd say the correct answer is GREAT…

just as great as the top five, with a special knack/ability for qualifying and is superb at pulling a gap early on cold tires and I'd say the most similar to him would be Hamilton who is the best at passing and is almost impossible to beat when his car and setup are just right and this year he has proven to be every bit as great a qualifier as Vettel, if not better.

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 5:07 pm 
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Excited utterances and hand waving means nothing to me...they ALL do it, we just don't always hear it. The difference between the guys at the front and at the back is that they don't let those things slow their progress. Ive been in a car, I've done it. I've been on the wall and heard it. They don't matter, and they don't tell you much of anything about the driver other than he's just like everyone else.

edited to add - I feel a lot of people here focus too much on little instances from races rather than look at the bigger picture. Some people hear one radio transmission, which is always out of context, and base a whole theory about a man's personality on it. I prefer to look at their whole body of work so to speak, which includes as many first person and anecdotal material I can get my hands on. If you are only looking at the man that Sky sports presents to you DURING the race, you have very little to draw conclusions from. We can't know these guys personally, but there is a lot more out there to digest than just what goes on during the live show.

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 5:13 pm 
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purchville wrote:
Vettelmessi wrote:
i think he is better than hamilton, kimi and button and equal with alonso. however in a few years im sure he will be regarded as one of the best ever ( best ever if he were to die mid race for some weird reason)


Silly comment. Some people just don't get it.

Senna was regarded as the best ever before his death by quite a few in the know. Sir Stirling Moss put him equal with Fangio before Tamburello..

Exactly, Berger said even at the time said the other drivers knew Ayrton was the best of his generation.

Sure he had a few naysayers, which is understandable due to how he drove and his expressive character, but his greatness was accepted before he died.

I personally rate Vettel below Alonso and Hamiliton, maybe not by much though. I also should agree with the above, whatever you think of his driving ability, Vettel does come across as a very nice guy.

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 10:33 pm 
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I think vettel is a nice guy and strange for a German but loves British humor which is strange, as for driving i think top 4 current, hard to put them in order. As for senna, he was top and proved it him and prost were in the same team, the best two drivers in the best car against each other, i don't think we will get that much any more sadly. Would vettel have his 3 wdc with someone like Alonso or Hamilton or kimi as a team mate over the past 3 years? We will never know.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 26, 2012 10:56 pm 
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Can there be a topic in here without mention of the legend and lore that was Senna?

Guy was great, ran into a wall, life and career over instantly. He was indeed a splendid driver who is unquestionably top 3-5 of all time but displayed behavior his fans choose to look past or pretend didn't even happen. His driving ability and premature death, coupled with his ruthlessly unscrupulous and downright arrogantly dangerous on-track behavior at times (today such tactics would have a driver banned permanently) just continue to add to the ever growing legend of this driver who drove the car via psionics (rather than his hands and feet), with his God looking over his every move, ordaining him as the supreme driver in the history of Formula 1.

This is about Vettel and how good people feel he is, period so let's try and stick to that.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2012 2:06 am 
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Incubus -If you really wanted people to stop talking about Senna, you really should have not give such a critical opinion of him which will spark some people to disagree with. I will take the high road though and stick to the subject so not to clog up the thread, which I will confess I did with my first post.

Watching the 2012 review on Sky yesterday made me notice something, Brundle gave the common opinion that Lewis was the fastest driver on the grid, but Alonso was the most complete.

So what is Vettel?

If he is not considered the best in any area, then the car he is in must be the deciding factor with his 3 Championships. It has become trite to say "its all the car" or "its all Newey" that is incorrect as Vettel has proven to be a very good driver, but whilst there are others on the grid who outshine him in every department, his legacy will be tarnished ever so slightly, its not his fault mind, but it remains.

If he cares that much, he should go to Ferrari or at least win somewhere else, that would take away a lot of the arguments that are in place and prove his worth more. Whether that will happen or is possible is another question.

There is always the chance that replacing Webber with a Kimi or Alonso would help Vettel a great deal if he could outperform them.

As great as Vettel is, there is understandably a lot of questions that are yet to be answered. And there is a chance some never will be answered, such the nature of the sport.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2012 2:25 am 
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ashley313 wrote:
Excited utterances and hand waving means nothing to me...they ALL do it, we just don't always hear it. The difference between the guys at the front and at the back is that they don't let those things slow their progress. Ive been in a car, I've done it. I've been on the wall and heard it. They don't matter, and they don't tell you much of anything about the driver other than he's just like everyone else.

edited to add - I feel a lot of people here focus too much on little instances from races rather than look at the bigger picture. Some people hear one radio transmission, which is always out of context, and base a whole theory about a man's personality on it. I prefer to look at their whole body of work so to speak, which includes as many first person and anecdotal material I can get my hands on. If you are only looking at the man that Sky sports presents to you DURING the race, you have very little to draw conclusions from. We can't know these guys personally, but there is a lot more out there to digest than just what goes on during the live show.

I agree with this but i have heard on numerous occasions Alonso moaning and shouting about other drivers, mainly Hamilton and Vettel....should have penalties etc etc and i don't see why he does it, is it frustration? is the pressure getting to him? We don't see anyone else doing it anyhere near as much! I see it as a weakness, a chink in his armour.
I think Vettel is the best driver at the moment


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2012 2:29 am 
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I've heard others do it - Alonso just wants to make sure he can continue to capitalize on others' errors.

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