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Can we finally put to bed the myth that the best drivers end up in the best cars?


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#1 rhukkas

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 19:02

A myth quite often put forward by the media when defending the 'is the world champion really THAT good' etc...

 

Hulkenberg casing point. Lucky to even still have a drive



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#2 sennafan24

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 19:03

Hulk is generally a exception, which is why it stands out as much.

 

Usually the best drivers do get top drives.



#3 KiloWatt

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 19:09

Too many cooks spoil the broth...

#4 Zoetrope

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 19:10

We have to ask ourselves is he really a top driver then? Why would teams like McLaren or Red Bull not want him if he is? (assuming Mercedes signed Lewis and Ferrari signed Kimi early into the corresponding seasons) I know both Ricciardo and Magnussen are heavily connected with their future teams, but they are still unproven and young. Yet, Hulk wasn't selected.

I admit he is a very good driver, but I can't say yet he is truly top shelf.



#5 bourbon

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 19:11

... the best drivers end up in the best cars. A myth quite often put forward by the media when defending the 'is the world champion really THAT good' etc...

 

Hulkenberg casing point. Lucky to even still have a drive

 

The top drivers do gravitate toward the top cars.  It isn't a myth at all.  There are not always enough top drives for the number of top drivers.  Other times, fans may need to reevaluate a driver they think is at the top, but who never gets a top drive and ask themselves why that is.  The teams have access to the film and data that we do not...



#6 motorhead

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 19:12

I wouldn´t say it is a myth. Lotus has now two drivers who will not get any salary from the team, if this is the way the things are going....well then we have to think again


Edited by motorhead, 29 November 2013 - 19:13.


#7 garoidb

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 19:17

One of the benefits of signing a really good driver is that you deprive your competitors of his services. A recent example is Ferrari taking Kimi from Lotus, who have been competing with them recently. Another example is Lewis being gone from McLaren. It is much easier to pass on signing a driver if you know your competitors aren't going to sign him either (for whatever reason). I think this applies to Hulkenberg. The team who probably should sign him (McLaren IMO) know that their main competitors don't have room for him.  



#8 billm99uk

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 19:56

There's always been the odd naff driver in a top car though (for reasons of sponsorship, nationality or plain bad taste by the team owner). Finding an exception doesn't disprove the rule in general. There are exceptions to pretty much every rule.



#9 rhukkas

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 20:01

Seems to be a lot exceptions out there,



#10 Kingshark

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 20:05

Damon Hill drove better cars than Michael Schumacher throughout the majority of the 90's.



#11 stuck-in-first-gear

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 20:12

Hulk will probably still end up with a decent drive sooner or later. Kimi and Alonso will retire at some stage.

#12 PayasYouRace

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 20:13

Damon Hill drove better cars than Michael Schumacher throughout the majority of the 90's.

 

Both would be considered top drivers in top cars though, even if Damon wasn't quite on the same level as Michael and the Benettons and Ferraris weren't quite up to Williams quality.



#13 Fatgadget

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 20:24

These days I think it's not as clear cut as it used to be back in the dark ages of F1....Ayrton Senna on record saying he would drive the then dominant Williams for nish just about sums it up.



#14 billm99uk

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 20:43

Seems to be a lot exceptions out there,

 

There's always a couple. When a GP2 champion and race winner (in a midfield car, no less) is considered a pay driver we're not doing too bad. People are just cut up because Hulkenberg can't seem to get a good seat. You go back far enough and half the F1 field was made up of "gentleman racers" of little discernible talent, just as is routine in sports cars. And as late as the eighties most of the field seemed to be made up of so-so Italian racers. Ain't saying it's perfect, and anyone who says they're the best 24/26 drivers in the world is an idjit, but it's better than it has been and it's a stronger field than any other series has at the moment (mebbe NASCAR would dispute it, but that's a slightly different beast). The current problems are only occurring because Bernie bought off RB, McLaren and Ferrari when the last Concorde deal ended and gave the other teams a poor financial deal, not to mention they're struggling for funds in a recession anyway.



#15 metz

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 21:08

Hulk is generally a exception, which is why it stands out as much.

 

Usually the best drivers do get top drives.

Absolute nonsense.

 

Are you telling us Kimi was let go from Ferrari because of talent and then his talent improved and they hired him back?

At top teams it is the same. Did McLaren hire the BEST driver for 2014? Did Red Bull?

No. There are a million other reasons even top teams don't necessarily hire the best.

Hulkenberg is not the exception. He is a casualty of the game that exists.



#16 Jerem

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 21:15

This topic is gonna drift towards a 'Vettel wins because only of the car, that is probably illegal anyway' and get locked.



#17 Kalmake

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 21:21

Both would be considered top drivers in top cars though, even if Damon wasn't quite on the same level as Michael and the Benettons and Ferraris weren't quite up to Williams quality.

Hill wasn't considered top enough to stay on a top team though. Williams has produced world champions that weren't able to find a top drive afterwards: Jones, Hill and Villeneuve. They never sought for the very best drivers because those are expensive. Prost and Senna were wanted and paid for by Renault.



#18 Romulan

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 21:54

"Cream rises to the top: A good person or idea cannot go unnoticed for long, just as cream poured in coffee or tea eventually rises to the top." - English For Students (Cambridge)

 

We see this in every sport in every country.  And as billm99uk has already stated, "Finding an exception doesn't disprove the rule in general."

 

In other words rhukkas, your "myth" is no myth at all.



#19 DrF

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 22:01

Massa and Webber.

And Rubens.

Edited by DrF, 29 November 2013 - 22:02.


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#20 PayasYouRace

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 22:05

Hill wasn't considered top enough to stay on a top team though. Williams has produced world champions that weren't able to find a top drive afterwards: Jones, Hill and Villeneuve. They never sought for the very best drivers because those are expensive. Prost and Senna were wanted and paid for by Renault.

 

Well firstly there weren't that many drivers at the time that you'd put above Hill, and already in 1997 Williams were regretting losing him for what he brought to car development. Villeneuve left for his own adventure with BAR. He was rated pretty highly in 98 and in 04 got picked up by Renault after Trulli was fired so he still wasn't doing to badly. Jones retired.

 

I agree that Williams has tended towards the "light-bulb" mentality with drivers, but it hardly goes against the "myth" this thread is about.



#21 ExFlagMan

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 22:09

Ever considered that maybe part of the art/skill of a top driver is to get themselves into the top car. It's not just about pushing the pedals and turning the wheel.

#22 ebc

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 23:22

Hulkenberg is good but nothing special, he got beat by Rubens then made hard work of di resta and has now beaten Gutierrez pretty easily but he seems out of his depth.

The best teams want the best drivers and they are passing on Nico for a reason. Maldanado is a Gp2 champ and a Grand prix winner so is no mug, and with 30 million Lotus think it gives them the best chance to win and with that money going on developing the car they are probably right.

Let's see how he does against Perez or whoever his new teammate may be.

#23 sennafan24

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 23:30

Damon Hill drove better cars than Michael Schumacher throughout the majority of the 90's.

How many top drivers were about in say 1995?

 

Schumi was the cream, Hill was a decent but not great driver, the rest were mid-field fodder at best (Mika was a late bloomer do not forget) and guys over the hill, like Alesi and Berger. Bernie had to recruit JV from America he was so concerned about the lack of talent to oppose Schumi. 

 

It is not like today with the quantity of talent coming through. It is difficult to compare era's, but even Eddie Irvine admits that with the modern times, talent is nurtured so a higher quantity of it comes through.

 

Hulk would not face as stiff opposition if he was about in the 90's for a drive at say Williams, Benetton or Ferrari.


Edited by sennafan24, 29 November 2013 - 23:31.


#24 Boxerevo

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 23:35

We have to ask ourselves is he really a top driver then? Why would teams like McLaren or Red Bull not want him if he is? (assuming Mercedes signed Lewis and Ferrari signed Kimi early into the corresponding seasons) I know both Ricciardo and Magnussen are heavily connected with their future teams, but they are still unproven and young. Yet, Hulk wasn't selected.

I admit he is a very good driver, but I can't say yet he is truly top shelf.

We can't be naive.

 

This isn't a sport,F1 is business and entertainment first.

 

The question is,will Hulk bring more money $$$ (being valuable at the world market) to us or being less expensive that the options we already have ?



#25 sennafan24

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 23:59

Absolute nonsense.

 

Are you telling us Kimi was let go from Ferrari because of talent and then his talent improved and they hired him back?

At top teams it is the same. Did McLaren hire the BEST driver for 2014? Did Red Bull?

No. There are a million other reasons even top teams don't necessarily hire the best.

Hulkenberg is not the exception. He is a casualty of the game that exists.

Not quite sure what you are on, where did I state that logic, of course some mid-level drivers occasionally get mid-field drives due to money.

 

I mean, usually that if a driver is top class then they will have interest and be signed by a top team, its very rare that a top driver goes a whole career without having a top drive. There is usually a top seat available for a highly touted driver, okay Kimi did go on a break for 2 years when there was a gap, but once a top seat was available he was snapped up. In the end, the cream in F1 usually does rise to the top in my view.

 

Take a chill pill as well.


Edited by sennafan24, 30 November 2013 - 00:00.


#26 bourbon

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 01:23

We can't be naive.

 

This isn't a sport,F1 is business and entertainment first.

 

The question is,will Hulk bring more money $$$ (being valuable at the world market) to us or being less expensive that the options we already have ?

 

Well from that perspective, every single successful professional sport is a business and entertainment first. 

 

I think the problem is "top drivers" is not well defined.  What is a top driver?


Edited by bourbon, 30 November 2013 - 01:27.


#27 rhukkas

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 02:24

"Cream rises to the top: A good person or idea cannot go unnoticed for long, just as cream poured in coffee or tea eventually rises to the top." - English For Students (Cambridge)

 

We see this in every sport in every country.  And as billm99uk has already stated, "Finding an exception doesn't disprove the rule in general."

 

In other words rhukkas, your "myth" is no myth at all.

 

Last time I checked it doesn't cost a young 14 year old 250k a year to play football, so comparing to other motorsports is ludicrous.



#28 zippythecat

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 02:45

Hulk being passed over by Red Bull to me is no indictment of the system. They have a driver development program, and he was never part of it. I think they looked at Raikkonen only in case neither Ricciardo nor Vergne developed, and stiff-armed him when they judged Ricciardo to have sufficiently advanced. It is true they chose the driver who'd be less costly to employ, but they also picked one who's significantly younger. In other sports, that's generally good policy.

 

Hulk being passed over by Ferrari is more problematic, but Ferrari is typical of "old money" sports teams that value established veterans no matter the cost. Ultimately, the result seems little indictment of Hulkenberg.

 

Hulk being passed over by McLaren in favor of Magnussen is of a piece with McLaren doing things the Red Bull way, but is more troubling because Michael and even more so Whitmarsh went out of their way to damn him with faint praise. That's the one folks should be concerned about, particularly since McLaren in the recent past has shown itself willing to hire veterans and thus can't be said to have a consistent approach.

 

People are rightly up in arms about Maldonado because he came into F1 as an old rookie who'd dominated less experienced drivers at the lower level. In other sports that's the mark of a suspect, not a prospect. He's done little to change opinions ever since, and is a PR disaster to boot. His signing reeks of a poorly managed team making a bad decision.

 

Hamilton getting the Merc drive is of a piece with the old-money style of Ferrari, the difference being that Merc signed a younger driver with still a couple of prime years ahead of him. In any free-agent market for drivers I'd expect Hamilton to have dibs over Hulkenberg, at least with the old-money teams.



#29 Morbus

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 03:23

I try not to think about it too much.

 

There has never been an F1 season when I sympathize with the majority of the drivers.

And there has never been an F1 season when I thought a given driver should have a better seat (or any seat at all, Kovalainen, Glock...).

And there has never been an F1 season without a driver that I outright hated.

 

So I don't think about it. Root for the guys I like, hope like hell those I don't crash and burn, and enjoy the show. Maldonado does not deserve a driving license, let alone an F1 seat, but what can I do, dude's got the money, I can't be the only one who's gotten used to seeing worse and less deserving people get ahead in life because of some idiotic/unfair/arbitrary random reason, right?

 

Then again, I do think Vettel is on his way to become the best F1 driver of all time, even surpassing the great Jim Clark, maybe? Ahhh, I don't know.


Edited by Morbus, 30 November 2013 - 03:24.


#30 Romulan

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 05:04

Last time I checked it doesn't cost a young 14 year old 250k a year to play football, so comparing to other motorsports is ludicrous.


I was attempting to address your question: "Can we finally put to bed the myth that the best drivers end up in the best cars?" - rhukkas

I stand by my original answer:

"Cream rises to the top: A good person or idea cannot go unnoticed for long, just as cream poured in coffee or tea eventually rises to the top." - English For Students (Cambridge)

We see this in every sport in every country.  And as billm99uk has already stated, "Finding an exception doesn't disprove the rule in general."

In other words rhukkas, your "myth" is no myth at all.



#31 chumma

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 06:18

Damon Hill drove better cars than Michael Schumacher throughout the majority of the 90's.

Majority...? 93 94 96? what about 94 95 97 98 99?



#32 Kingshark

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 06:46

Majority...? 93 94 96? what about 94 95 97 98 99?

 

1992 - Schumi

1993 - Hill

1994 - Hill

1995 - Hill

1996 - Hill

1997 - Schumi

1998 - Schumi

1999 - Schumi

 

That's four each, but you get the point. Damon Hill's cars were often better than Schumacher's despite being a clearly inferior driver.



#33 Thomas99

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 07:41

Well I wouldn't call Red Bull's 2013 line up, nor their 2014 lineup as the best two drivers on the grid. 



#34 Gorma

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 08:07

As I expected this conversation is graviting from "top drivers getting top seats" to "the best driver getting the best seat" and as expected "vettel isn't the best"



#35 velgajski1

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 09:05

It happens occasionaly, I think Heidfeld is also example of driver that never got a real chance. But in generally, over the career - those that deserve chance will get it even if its in late part of their careers like with Button. 



#36 velgajski1

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 09:08

Well I wouldn't call Red Bull's 2013 line up, nor their 2014 lineup as the best two drivers on the grid. 

 

Not the best two drivers, but one of the best - if not the best lineup. In 2013., *maybe* Rosberg/Hamilton is stronger lineup, and thats a really big *maybe*.



#37 Radion

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 09:12

Kimi: Sauber -> McLaren

Alonso: Minardi -> Renault

Hamilton: Formula 3 (or whatever series beneth formula one) -> McLaren

Vettel: Torro Rosso -> RedBullRacing

Kubica: Renault -> was on ferrari's watch.

 

So yes, most 'talents' out there are defenitly getting the best seats in this sport. The problem with the hulk/other talents is, there are only a limited number of top seats....


Edited by Radion, 30 November 2013 - 09:14.


#38 Nemo1965

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 09:57

I read this thread as a covered dig at Red Bull - the owners of the best car - and Sebastian Vettel (who's status as the best driver supposedly is a myth), so lets take him as an example.

 

Red Bull have, in their different guises as Red Bull and Toro Rosso-  'tested' a lot of 'new' drivers. Out of the top of my head they let race in F1 races: Richard Doornbos, Jaime Alguisari, Sebastian Bourdais, Sebastian Buemi, Scot Speed, Liuzzi, Daniel Ricciardo, Jean-Eric Vergne, and then some other drivers - Sato, B.Senna, Neel Jani - during tests. And, ofcourse, they tested Sebastian Vettel, first at Toro Rosso then at Red Bull.

 

If Red Bull are true F1 competitors and ruthless to the core, they will not choose drivers for any other reasons than getting the maximum results from their cars. On these Forums, often Alguesari and Buemi were put forward as 'victims' of the ruthless using of drivers by the mothercompany Red Bull.

 

Well, it could have happened that Vettel was not as good as he promised to be. Then Red Bull would have thrown him out, just as poor Buemi and Alguesari. If Red Bull is indeed the best car, then Vettel is the proof that the best drivers end up in the best car. The history of Red Bull (and their testlab Toro Rosso) proves that they test and try to get the best they can get. And that they are 'mercyless'. 

 

Red Bull is the first team in my memory that is so commercially directed, that they indeed choose drivers for their performances first and foremost. So, if I am right, for the first time in F1 history the best driver is in the best car for all the right reasons...  ;)


Edited by Nemo1965, 30 November 2013 - 10:02.


#39 seahawk

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 10:44

Is Hülkenberg a top driver? In the 2012 season Perez was seen on an equal level, yet in a good car he was less impressive. So I would say Hülkenberg is a driver who deserves a shot in a top team and only then we will know if he is good or a top driver.

 

If we look at this season, we see that there are only 4 teams left which can be considered top teams.

 

Merc has no openings

Ferrari decided to hire a WDC

RBR has an active junior program and decided to promote their protege

 

That only leaves Macca as an option. But as Hülkenberg is German that seems to be no option either.



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#40 DutchQuicksilver

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 10:51

That only leaves Macca as an option. But as Hülkenberg is German that seems to be no option either.

Another myth.



#41 Currahee

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 10:55

Teams may overlook him due to him jumping ship every season.

 

Perceived lack of loyalty.



#42 Paul Parker

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 11:35

We have to ask ourselves is he really a top driver then? Why would teams like McLaren or Red Bull not want him if he is? (assuming Mercedes signed Lewis and Ferrari signed Kimi early into the corresponding seasons) I know both Ricciardo and Magnussen are heavily connected with their future teams, but they are still unproven and young. Yet, Hulk wasn't selected.

I admit he is a very good driver, but I can't say yet he is truly top shelf.

 

Until he gets into a front running car he cannot reach the top shelf.

 

Without naming names the undeniable fact is that money trumps absolute talent, as is obvious and this is nothing new. It is quite bizzare but sadly predictable to see Hulkenberg still casting around for the relative F1 left overs and second rate machinery despite his potential, in my opinion he has nothing to prove.

 

Worse still we now have the farcical situation whereby normal human beings are apparently too heavy and too large even with 800 bhp or whatever the new 2014 F1 cars will produce. In time this will remove most of the European F1 drivers from the grids unless they are very small and lightweight, because the regulations are too dictatorial and the cars increasingly packaged down to the last millimetre.

 

The ultimate driver of choice in the modern age is jockey sized and preferably well funded in their own right and comes from a country or region where the marketing would be most effective and/or match the driver's nationality.



#43 noikeee

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 11:51

It's not a myth. Great drivers TEND to be picked up by the better teams. They won't ALWAYS be picked up, and this effect is less pronounced as you go down the ladder as teams that aren't at the very top might not have the resources to pick drivers exclusively on merit, but over time most of the great ones tend to rise to most of the great teams. Always has been, always will be.

 

It's not a coincidence that Vettel, Alonso, Raikkonen, Hamilton, Rosberg and Button are all driving for Red Bull, Ferrari, Mercedes and McLaren.



#44 wepmob2000

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 11:53

Too difficult to say, and an argument that has existed for ever. Its probably easiest to think that teams have a huge array of reasons for giving a driver a seat, beyond that of driving talent, otherwise why else did Webber and Massa stay in top seats for so long? But also just how important is pure talent in this era of remote control F1, where the driver is little more than a puppet obeying instructions from the pitwall? And just how good is the Hulk? Some drivers flatter to deceive, take the case of Johnny Herbert.... talked up for years as a wasted talent.... when he did get a top drive...... wasn't that great.



#45 TheWilliamzer

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 12:15

The best drivers give precise feedback to the teams to end up in the best cars.



#46 ebc

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 12:36

Reading this thread gives the impression that some of you don't even like F1,people complaining for complainings sake.

The best drivers do end up in the best cars, there might be the odd exception here and there but Hulkenberg is not one of them. He is good but not exceptional like the top guys, aside from Maldonado at Lotus I don't think Hulkenberg would have the speed to compete with any of the other drivers.

Will be interesting to see how Massa does at Williams, people seem to think he was not worthy of his Ferrari drive but if he sees off Bottas it wouldn't be a surprise.

#47 Paul Parker

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 12:46

Too difficult to say, and an argument that has existed for ever. Its probably easiest to think that teams have a huge array of reasons for giving a driver a seat, beyond that of driving talent, otherwise why else did Webber and Massa stay in top seats for so long? But also just how important is pure talent in this era of remote control F1, where the driver is little more than a puppet obeying instructions from the pitwall? And just how good is the Hulk? Some drivers flatter to deceive, take the case of Johnny Herbert.... talked up for years as a wasted talent.... when he did get a top drive...... wasn't that great.

 

In the case of Johnny Herbert his ultimate potential was greatly diminished as a result of the dreadful leg/foot injuries he sustained after his collision with Gregor Foitek at Brands Hatch in 1988.

 

It was nothing short of a minor miracle that Herbert was able to drive a F1 car competitively in subsequent years, without the Brands shunt he would have been far more effective and your dismissive comment 'wasn't that great' is in my opinion inappropriate and wrong.



#48 George Costanza

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 14:27

Damon Hill drove better cars than Michael Schumacher throughout the majority of the 90's.

 

Indeed.

 

IF Michael was in the Williams Renault, he'd win 5 straight...  People forget just how good Williams Renault were. You loook at Red Bull now, it was like that only with mulitple drivers winning and even with slower drivers getting poles (DC in 1995 and Damon Hill through his career, look at 1995, Michael only got 4 poles that season). 



#49 George Costanza

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 14:31

1992 - Schumi

1993 - Hill

1994 - Hill

1995 - Hill

1996 - Hill

1997 - Schumi

1998 - Schumi

1999 - Schumi

 

That's four each, but you get the point. Damon Hill's cars were often better than Schumacher's despite being a clearly inferior driver.

 

To be honest, Michael never truly had the very best car until 2000s decade... From 1992-1999, the cars he drove was always a bit behind Williams, McLaren and even Benetton in 1996-1997. Then, 2000 on equal terms with McLaren, perhaps a bit slower than the Mac that year.

 

You would not put the 1994-1995 Benetton in the same class as Williams in pure pace and speed, take a look how much quicker the 1994 Williams was in Ayrton's hands. No dobut in my mind, he would have won the championship once Williams sort it out. Same for 1995, DC got 4 poles in a row. And he was never the fastest driver of that generation... Look at 1999, Mika Hakkinen scored all the Poles for McLaren, DC got none....  1998? Schumacher 3 poles, DC 3 poles, and Mika 9.

 

I think that sums up how good Michael Schumacher truly was.


Edited by George Costanza, 30 November 2013 - 14:41.


#50 krea

krea
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Posted 30 November 2013 - 15:20

Well, the very best driver doesn't get automatically the very best car because such things aren't predictable.

 

Schumacher isn't the perfect example because he didn't go to Ferrari for having the best car. And Ferrari was the second best car, except 1996, after all.

 

And talking about Red Bull and Alonso. Alonso had the oppurtunity to drive for Red Bull but he picked Renault and later Ferrari.


Edited by krea, 30 November 2013 - 15:22.