F1 Fan Rankings Creates an Uproar as Leclerc-Perez Debate Heats Up Among Others

Published 12/22/2021, 11:18 AM EST
Formula One F1 – United States Grand Prix – Circuit of the Americas, Austin, Texas, U.S. – October 21, 2021 Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc ahead of the Grand Prix REUTERS/Mike Blake


After a usual Formula 1 weekend, the experts sit down and review the race gone by and the performances of the individual drivers. However, this time, the fans sat in the experts’ chair. Having taken over the Aramco Power Rankings, fans had voted for their driver of the season.

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Looking at the rankings, Max Verstappen took the lead as Formula 1 revealed the top 10 drivers of the season according to the fans. Lewis Hamilton came a close second. However, the surprise lay in the fact that Carlos Sainz had come third. The Spaniard outscored Pierre Gasly and Lando Norris, who came fourth and fifth, respectively.

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Further, Leclerc was way down below in the ninth position, as opposed to the fourth given to him by the experts. While some fans agreed Sainz had a strong season- one complete with four podiums and out-scoring his teammate in his debut season with Ferrari- others argued otherwise.

F1 fans react to their power rankings

There were many arguments regarding the final result; the main one being, Leclerc standing in 9th while Russell, Alonso, and Perez finished comfortably ahead. It may not have been the best season for Leclerc; yet, the Monegasque certainly outperformed the likes of Alonso and Russell.

Thus, once again, Leclerc ended up being the most underrated driver on the grid; F1 Twitter was split, and the debate began.

The other talking point was Valtteri Bottas‘ absence from the list. While Perez and Ocon featured on the list, the efforts of the Finn were lost on the fans.

Comparing fan rankings to the experts

As the fans continue their debate on who deserved to be on the list; a glance at the expert ratings shows how different the results were. For starters, the Ferrari duo had very different standings on both boards.

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Carlos Sainz was fifth on the ranking, tied with Pierre Gasly; more importantly, he was behind his teammate. The experts elevated Charles Leclerc to fourth on the standings. The contrast is rather startling as the drop to ninth may have been uncalled for.

Formula One F1 – Monaco Grand Prix – Circuit de Monaco, Monte Carlo, Monaco – May 23, 2021 Red Bull’s Max Verstappen celebrates on the podium with second placed Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz Jr. and third placed McLaren’s Lando Norris Pool via REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes

Further, on the experts’ list, McLaren’s Lando Norris stood third. Norris did shine bright in the 2022 season, however, did the second half of the season disappoint the fans? It was enough to put him in fifth on the fans’ vote.

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It’s these drivers that have the potential to fight for championships in the very near future. With Leclerc’s zeal and Sainz’s passion, Norris‘ relentlessness, and Gasly’s determination, they are the ones to look out for.

Watch this story: When F1 Drivers Had a Blast on Top Gear Featuring Hamilton, Vettel & Ricciardo

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Shreya Sanjeev

773 articles

Shreya Sanjeev is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. Having attained a journalism degree from St Xavier's College, she finds comfort in the sound of her keyboard while typing and excitement in the sound of F1 cars speeding on a track. A street circuit and Daniel Ricciardo fan through and through, Shreya claims the 2018 Monaco GP to be one of her favorite races of all time.

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