Not Hamilton or Verstappen! This F1 Driver Won the Most Driver of the Day Awards in 2021

Published 01/01/2022, 4:46 AM EST
Formula One F1 – United States Grand Prix – Circuit of the Americas, Austin, Texas, U.S. – October 24, 2021 Red Bull’s Max Verstappen celebrates on the podium after winning the race with second place Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton REUTERS/Brian Snyder


Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton absolutely ruled the grid in 2021, sharing as many as 18 race victories between themselves. The number could’ve been a lot higher if not for the incidents in Monza and Baku; both the F1 races had either Verstappen or Hamilton as the leading favorites to secure the top step on the podium before misery struck.

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Hence, having showcased such a tremendous racing prowess consistently throughout the year, one might assume that either one of them would have won the most ‘Driver of the Day’ awards over the season.

But, here’s something interesting! It is neither the eventual world champion, Verstappen, nor the runner-up, Hamilton, that garnered the most DOTD awards in 2021. It is instead the unsung hero of the 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, Sergio Perez that tops the standings.

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Sergio Perez won the most DOTD awards over the 2021 F1 season

The Mexican secured his first award over the opening F1 race weekend in Bahrain. A poor qualifying followed by an unfortunate engine shutdown during the warm-up lap, only for the car to fire up soon after which forced him to start the race from the pit lane. From P20 on lap 1, Perez went on to finish in P5.

Only two race weekends later in Portugal, Perez won his second DOTD award after securing his best-ever finish for Red Bull Racing – P4. Later, in the second half of the season, Perez yet again earned the fans’ love for his ecstatic drive at Zandvoort.

Formula One F1 – Mexico City Grand Prix – Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, Mexico City, Mexico – November 7, 2021 Red Bull’s Max Verstappen celebrates with third placed Red Bull’s Sergio Perez after winning the race Pool via REUTERS/Francisco Guasco

Starting from the pit lane, the Red Bull driver secured P8 at the chequered flag, which initially looked impossible citing Zandvoort’s narrow track. And finally, it was at the Mexican GP that Perez earned his fourth and final DOTD award for securing his first podium in front of his home crowd.

With four awards in hand, Perez has the most DOTD awards in the 2021 season followed by three each for Verstappen and Norris.

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2021 DOTD award rankings

Here’s how the drivers line up in the category of most DOTD awards:-

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  1. Sergio Perez (Red Bull Racing) – 4
  2. Max Verstappen (Red Bull Racing) – 3
  3. Lando Norris (McLaren) – 3
  4. Lewis Hamilton (McLaren) – 2
  5. Sebastian Vettel (Aston Martin) – 2
  6. Fernando Alonso (Alpine) – 2
  7. Charles Leclerc (Ferrari) -2
  8. Carlos Sainz (Ferrari) – 1
  9. Daniel Ricciardo (McLaren) – 1
  10. Kimi Raikkonen (Alfa Romeo) – 1
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Rohit Kumar

1629 articles

Rohit Kumar is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. He has been an ardent follower of the racing series since 2007, with his love for the sport coinciding with his love for Kimi Raikkonen. He is also an ardent follower of Sebastian Vettel and Aston Martin Racing.

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