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F1 Opinion 30

Paul Fearnley’s Top 10

For more information about the investigation into the green/yellow flag incident, please check back later this morning.

Usually I finish my blogging process knee-deep in reference works and/or up to my elbows in screwed-up statistical scrawls.

Not this time. This one is subjective to the max. Nary a glance at the final points standings and not so much as a reminding peek at the list of 2012 winners, never mind a dissection of lap times, miles led and who was on what tyres when.

Rather I have let a long, frantic and complex season wash over me before wringing the following Top 10 from it:

1 Fernando Alonso

opinion  Paul Fearnleys Top 10

His ability to coax the last drop of juice from a Ferrari that was more of a lemon than a peach marks the Spaniard with the ‘Dolmio’ eyebrows as the category’s most complete performer. His cavernous spare capacity allows him to keep track of all those around him and grab any opportunity that comes his way. He’s not perfect, of course: he cannot deflect all the blame for his team’s inability to keep developmental pace with Red Bull  – all it did was make the car easier for Felipe Massa to drive – and for the second time in three years his strategic radar went on the blink at the crux. Brazil was a race that realistically he had to win if he wanted to become a three-time world champion and thus an early gamble to stick with slicks was surely the call to have made. Erk! Tyres. Time to move on…

Most like: Tazio Nuvolari

2 Sebastian Vettel

In the manner that Alonso’s inferior equipment has allowed his talent to shine, so this young German’s hot line to Adrian Newey has clouded his. There can, however, be no doubt now that he is the Herr McCoy. In 2010, he snuck up on the rail. In 2011, he disappeared into the distance. And in 2012, he did a bit of both: patient when the Red Bull was pawing the ground and soaringly assured when it earned its wings. The onboard evidence of his calmness as he rolled backwards down the hill at Interlagos, the oncoming pack slithering scarily either side, bore witness, in a weird way, to a talent who has every base covered. Christian Horner’s twitchy foot went haywire, but suddenly I knew his charge would be crowned. (Easy to say when all you have invested is a love of the sport.) Vettel’s next 20 or so laps – car holed just above its aerodynamic water line, conditions changeable, rivals in a school’s out mood – promoted him from the rank of extremely, absolutely, jolly bloody good to genuine great.

Most like: Jim Clark

3 Lewis Hamilton

The mood lifted once he had made his decision, one party starkly aware of what he was giving up, the other of what it was about to lose, but both dealing with it and benefiting from the process. The joie de vivre of that startling 2007 rookie season was not recaptured – how could it be? – but finally the Brit’s evolution and experience overcompensated for its absence and tipped his balance deep into the positive: the fastest man in Formula 1 – so the number-crunchers tell us – has never driven better than he did this season. That this still wasn’t enough was due to the failings of the team; Hamilton more than kept his part of the bargain. His move to Mercedes-Benz will prove whether he is ready to lead with his head as well as with the seat of his pants. That he was unable to prevent smoothie Jenson Button from getting under his skin and into the team’s veins shows that he does not yet wield the armoury of the current Alonso.

Most like: pre-1959 Stirling Moss

4 Kimi Räikkönen

opinion  Paul Fearnleys Top 10

I was a naysayer – well, my middle name is Thomas – a disbeliever. This comeback was surely doomed. Lotus would not come up to snuff and the taciturn Finn, hardly the most patient of men, would leave in a huff sometime before mid-season. Instead he was unwaveringly terrific, as buoyant as his downbeat demeanour allows, in a car that almost broke through to make it a Top Four. Both man and machine fell short – Kimi displayed some ring-rust and hesitancy when wheel-to-wheel – but only by whiskers. Free to do his own thing, Räikkönen stripped the process to its bare essentials to remind us that being a modern racing driver has become much too frilly. He can go a monosyllable too far the other way for my tastes, but hats – and silly baseball caps – off to him for the most stylised and focused return since Niki Lauda’s of 30 years ago.

Most like: oh, go on then, James Hunt

5 Jenson Button

Cor, he can make it look so easy: his wins at Melbourne and Interlagos book-ended a Spa that oozed imperial progress; there are days when he can look more untouchable than even Vettel. Yet equally it can all drain frustratingly away to leave him with only a bemused smile, a shrug and a few quips, plus a mid-grid slot and a short shrift of points. Giving him a shake would be counterproductive – he’s too set in his set-up ways, knows too well his own mind – but occasionally I have the urge. There can be no excuses in 2013 when presumably McLaren will base its design around his needs, but still I expect his adaptable new team-mate to occasionally barge him aside.

Most like: Carlos Reutemann

6 Sergio Pérez

It went to pot once his near future with McLaren was assured, and there were rather too many stand-aside lunges and petulant, pointless hand gestures. Sorry, Sergio, but not everybody knows who you are – yet. Luckily, he had already proved his point: it sounds woolly, I know, but there is something about him. That ability to meter his tyres, to hound the best of the best in the trickiest of conditions – he’s different. McLaren had its pick and it too was wooed by the cocky Mexican’s potential and the buzz that that brings. It’s good to know there might be some data to confirm my gut instinct. Or has the silver-grey team from Las Woking gone wild and wacky and taken a punt? Pérez is that sort of (well-funded) driver.

Most like: it’s too easy to say Pedro Rodríguez, but I’ve said it nevertheless

7 Nico Hülkenberg

opinion  Paul Fearnleys Top 10

The sensible choice might also have been a wise one for McLaren, for although the German has been going about his impressive business unobtrusively, anyone who saw him tame and aim a wayward A1GP car will be aware of the balance and speed that provides the foundation of a career that many expect shortly to include a spell at Ferrari. He’s not showy, but he’s steely. He could have settled for second at Interlagos to top off a season that saw him wrest control of Force India from the incumbent Paul di Resta, but instead he went for bust, albeit in a calculated way that should have earned him praise and respect but instead resulted in his taking a ludicrous drive-through penalty.

Most like and unlike: Nick Heidfeld

8 Romain Grosjean

Having sat motionless at my keyboard for 20 minutes musing this one, I have decided to simply let it ride bar assuring you that, no, his selection was not made merely for controversial effect and, yes, I have turned a blind eye to his blind spots.

Most like: Riccardo Patrese

9 Mark Webber

His pole laps are picture-postcard models of the ideal culled straight from the coaching manual. I could happily watch them, billing and cooing, for hours. But when a Newey design demands something counterintuitive from its driver, Aussie Grit remains stuck in a groove that is beautiful rather than bountiful. His dealings with the pack also lack variety and wisdom and he can look like an overwhelmed rookie on occasion. Of course, he is undoubtedly number two at Red Bull, but that’s only right and proper; witness his re-signing. His time was ripe for a Hamilton-like move, a cold, invigorating plunge to locate the missing piece, but, too grounded to suffer a mid-life crisis, he ducked it. Because of that I’m predicting that he will never find it.

Most like: Patrick Tambay meets Gerhard Berger

10 Pastor Maldonado

opinion  Paul Fearnleys Top 10

Yes, points mean funding, but I like to think that the racers at Williams would swap any number of what-if fifth places for that unexpected victory at Barcelona. I would. Sense and strategy can be dialled in and learned by rote in a way that raw speed cannot. And the Venezuelan is unquestionably a raw nerve of a racing driver: all twitch and reflex or, as Frank Gardner might have put it, balls and eyesight. Those are no bad things. Yet.

Most like: Vittorio Brambilla, with the potential to become the next René Arnoux

To take this very unscientific treatise to its far from inevitable conclusion: 11, Paul di Resta; 12, Nico Rosberg; 13 Daniel Ricciardo; 14 Kamui Kobayashi; 15, Michael Schumacher; 16, Charles Pic; 17, Felipe Massa; 18 Heikki Kovalainen; 19, Jean-Eric Vergne; 20, Vitaly Petrov; 21, Bruno Senna; 22, Timo Glock; 23, Pedro de la Rosa; 24, Narain Karthikeyan.

Right, 2013.

opinion  Paul Fearnleys Top 10

Add your comments

30 comments on Paul Fearnley’s Top 10

  1. Ray in Toronto Canada, 29 November 2012 14:55

    1 Vettel – Took on the might of McLaren/Hamilton and Ferrari/Alonso to win three titles in a row inspite of Renault costing him 25 points at Valencia, 12 points at Monza and 22 Grid spots at Abu Dhabi.

    An All Time Great with LOTS to come.

    2 Alonso – Lost a 42 point advantage in the Championship when the Ferrari became more competitive. Had Massa not been held back/grid-dropped in 3 of the final 5 races, Alonso’s points collapse would have looked more alarming.

    His Japanese GP DNF, when he tangled with Kimi after moving over on him, was no one else’s fault but his own.

    3 Hamilton. Thrashed Button. The “points” gap doesn’t do him justice because McLaren cost him 3 wins: Spain, Singapore, Abu Dhabi.

    4 Raikkonen

    5 Hulkenberg

    6 Button – He was nowhere in a handful of races in a car Hamilton was winning with at mid-season. So I can’t place him in my top 5.

    7 Webber – Respectable Vs an All Time Great. Won the Grand Prix de Monaco for a 2nd time on pure merit. That’s not an easy task.

    8 Rosberg

    9 Perez. He was useless after signing on to replace Hamilton. Kaltenborn said that his podiums were more down to tyre strategy gambles following poor qualifying than down to pure Ace-like driving. (In comparison, she said Kobayashi’s Japan podium was based on pure pace and NOT on a tyre strategy gamble). I have to agree with the Sauber team principle. So I can’t place the Mexican higher.

    10 Maldonado. Although some could place di Resta or Ricciardo in this spot.

  2. Ray in Toronto Canada, 29 November 2012 15:12


    I think the vast majority of un-biased observers would place Hulkenberg’s 2012 above Perez’s 2012.

    As has been said, Perez brings funding…The Hulk doesn’t.

    Perhaps that’s why McLaren signed the Mexican?

    Lastly, I don’t know too many people who’d place Romain Grosjean in their Top 12, perhaps even Top 15. So putting him 8th is VERY brave indeed!

    Aha ha!

    But it’s good to debate. What else is there for us to do during the “off season”?

    Kind regards,

    Ray in Toronto

  3. Factor, 29 November 2012 15:49

    Brilliant mate. Spot on.

  4. Michael Spitale, 29 November 2012 16:11

    as funny as it may sound I really though Heikki did very well with what he had this year and should be much higher than 18. I know we tend to discount back marker teams though…..

    as for the top 10, spot on

  5. Pitmonster, 29 November 2012 16:24

    An excellent review, well thought out and beautifully written

    I particularly agree with the placing of both Williams drivers, but I think you’ve got pretty much everyone bang on.

  6. kowalsky, 29 November 2012 16:29

    i like it. An unbiased list, that puts two spanish speaking drivers in it, because of their talent and efforts.
    Alonso first, i think is right, eventhoug we all agree that vettel is a deserving champion.
    hamilton 3rd, but with all respect to the fastest man. And lest not forget f1 is about speed first.

  7. dbboy, 29 November 2012 16:48

    Can’t disagree with the top five but would definitely swap Perez and the Hulk round. The former had 3 sensational races, a few solid ones and then was either beaten by KK (who’s no Jenson Button…) or crashed out. Hulkenburg has got better with each race. Grosjean at 8 though… sheesh, sure he’s been super fast at times but you can’t tell me a solid pair of hands like Glock, Kovalainen, Heidfeld or even Petrov wouldn’t have scored more points than he did in that Lotus.

  8. Andrew Scoley, 29 November 2012 16:58

    I like your ‘Most like’ comparisons, I think you’ve got most of those pretty much spot on. Perhaps Kimi with his metronomic finishing ability is more Prost/Lauda than Hunt, but out of the car, yes, Hunt!

  9. Bill, 29 November 2012 17:01

    Fantastic article! Excellent read and I cannot argue about any choice.

    Nice to see someone else looks behind Grosjeans easy and stupid mistakes to see a guy who, on raw one lap pace, would be a match for Hamilton. Lets hope Grosjean really learns and matures in a quicker rate than the Briton.

    Maldonado was great, seems to have calmed down in the later part of the season, and finally put an end to any vague hopes Bruno Senna was the same as his uncle Ayrton. He better quit or drive under another name before he taints that legacy further.
    The other thing I like about Pastor: he sounds just like Tony Montana. :)

  10. Hugo Boss, 29 November 2012 23:23

    A well thought out list Paul and yes indeed, what a season from Alonso. Though how you get Weber into a top 10 is beyond me – he made more mistakes in Brazil than any other driver made in the whole season!

    And due to what I can only assume is a defective British gene, you seem to have not noticed that Schumacher outperformed Rosberg this season (yes Rosberg won in China and yes, he scored more points …) To see a 43-year-old former champion putting a Mercedes on pole at Monaco was a more seminal moment in F1 history than anything we saw this season from Grosjean, Hulkenberg, Maldonado, Perez …

  11. Scott Coe, 29 November 2012 23:26

    1. Alonso – he didn’t have the best car at ANY point in the season! Mind you, it would’ve been a clearer-cut decision had Massa not outqualified him in the last couple of races…

    2. Hamilton – hardly any mistakes this year, slowly adding maturity to his undoubted speed.

    3. Vettel – best car most of the way through the season. Some weekends where he pulverised the opposition, others where his immaturity and petulance caused even Jacques Villeneuve – himself no stranger to toys-out-of-the-pram moments – to berate him for it…

    4. Raikkonen – seven podia in the year, reminded me of Frentzen’s season with Jordan in ’99.

    5. Hulkenberg – managed to make the Force India look a world beater at times, especially in Brazil. Made di Resta look flat-footed on occasion.

    6. Button – hot and cold, much like David Coulthard.

    7. Webber – if only the second half of his season matched the first, where he was outqualifying Vettel regularly.

    8. Perez – three 2nd places in a Sauber deserves some credit; throwing it off the race track in the last third of the season doesn’t…

    9. Pic – maybe a strange choice, but he outqualified and outraced his quick and experienced team-mate more often than expected…

    10. Rosberg – one win and some good points finishes in a car that did not often impress, on speed or reliability.

    11. Massa
    12. Di Resta
    13. Maldonado
    14. Grosjean
    15. Schumacher
    16. Kobayashi
    17. Kovalainen
    18. Ricciardo
    19. Vergne
    20. Glock
    21. De La Rosa
    22. Senna
    23. Karthikeyan
    24. Petrov

  12. Bill, 29 November 2012 23:35

    Im a big fan of Schumacher, and Vettels 3rd title only underlines the greatness Schumacher is, having 7 of them, but hes been not that outstanding in 2012.

    In the first half he had lots of bad luck, but the 2nd half saw lots of silly mistakes. The only good point of him in 2012 was that Monaco qualifying, and perhaps that last pitstop call for inters here in Brasil. P15 is warranted.

  13. Ged, 30 November 2012 09:52

    1 Alonso
    2 Hamilton
    3 Vettel


    4 Räikkönen


    5 Hülkenberg
    6 Button
    7 Webber
    8 Maldonado
    9 Rosberg
    10 Grosjean

    ….with a large amount of

    I really think that Hamilton was flawless except for failing to find the Mclaren sweet spot at places like Silverstone and Spa. Alonso had a couple of beauty spots (Suzuka: his fault; not at all dominant over Massa at the season’s crux) but he was carrying that Ferrari on his back. Whereas the Mclaren seen over the WHOLE year was as fast a package as the Red Bull. Just more difficult to set up. No criticism of Vettel implied, I just don’t think he had the opportunity to show quite as much of his repertoire as the other two.

    Nagging suspicion I’ve placed JB and MW too highly, disappointed with both of them despite some splendid victories. For me Maldonado showed more evidence being something special than did Perez. Grosjean could be better than either but made more errors than both combined.

  14. Steve W, 30 November 2012 12:37

    Lists like these can be argued forever, but I definitely agree with Alonso being Number One.

  15. Ray in Toronto Canada, 30 November 2012 13:20


    There are 2 big problems for me when it comes to “rating” Nando:

    1. Unlike Hamilton and Vettel, Alonso is paired up with a driver who has been ripe for subjugation.

    Button and Webber are/were nothing like Massa 2010-2012. Massa’s situation coming into 2010 was a question mark following his near-fatal accident in August, 2009…and, then, he got crushed mentally by the team at Hockenheim.

    Massa’s been to a psychiatrist/psychotherapist this year (no this is not a joke, it’s true) because he has not been mentally and emotionally as strong as Button and Webber.

    Now, why do I bring up Button and Webber? Well, Hamilton and Vettel can’t be judged or “rated” the same way Alonso is by pundits.

    Hamilton and Vettel have a far tougher job. McLaren and Red Bull let their drivers race and have to fight each-other tooth and nail until the math says otherwise.

    Alonso, meanwhile, has it all his own way. It’s easy to “rate” him when you don’t have a top driver beside him..

    …but when the car came good, Massa had to be slowed down (Monza, Korea, Austin, Interlagos) and Alonso coughed-up a 42 point lead.

    I’d like to see Alonso paired up with a driver in a team with a driver policy that was prevelant at McLaren and Red Bull 2010-2012…and then see how he reacts.

    But…but, he had this in 2007.

    Alonso had this in 2007 and he ran away from it.

    What would Alonso do if a driver the calibre of Vettel joined him at a team with a co-equal policy?

    Can people answer?

  16. IM, 30 November 2012 13:31

    All that really matters is that Newey was no 1.

    Vettel is obvious a decent driver, Webber is the second best driver in the team but any one of 10-12 drivers could have won the Championship in a Red Bull and that goes for the last 3 years.

  17. Ray in Toronto Canada, 30 November 2012 13:31


    2. Alonso was supposed to lead Ferrari to World Championships, supposedly.

    A Motor Sport Magazine PodCast concensus in early 2010 said that “Alonso would win at least one Championship in his first three years at Ferrari”.

    Well….Instead, it’s been Vettel leading Red Bull to World Championships.

    What happened to Alonso “the great developer, the master tactician, the guy who bring “6-Tenths” to a team”?

    Where are the Constructors World Championships and Drivers World Championships?

    Inspite of Massa giving up 7 points (and his fragile dignity) at Hockenheim in 2010 and points at Monza, Korea and Austin and Interlagos to Alonso in 2012, there aren’t any.

    Ferrari with Kimi after three years:

    1 WDC
    2 WCC

    Ferrari with Nando after three years:

    0 WDC
    0 WCC

    That is the bottom line.

    This idea that Alonso is a master tactician and great developer and brings “6-Tenths” to a team, blah, blah, blah is complete rubbish and a myth.

    Alonso is no different than Hamilton, Vettel. He’s a fast racing driver. Period.

    The bottom line:

    0 out of 6 when it comes to World Championships.

  18. Grey, 30 November 2012 14:52

    What is Romain Grosjean doing in that 8th place? Not to mention before Mark Webber who has won Monaco this year? You sure have made it controversial enough for me to write “protest” here

  19. zantimisfit66, 30 November 2012 21:48

    Ah, Rosberg at 12. Thanks for that – I had forgotten Mercedes were running a second car.

  20. Scott Coe, 30 November 2012 22:21


    A good point made about Alonso being helped by being treated as the clear number 1. However, though Vettel did not get the same sort of help from Webber, the fact that the car was redesigned mid-season for him shows you the extent to which Red Bull bent over backwards for him. That, and the fact that the Toro Rossos simply leapt out of the way for him despite racing for position. One thing to have your own team support you, but quite something else for another team to do so…

    Having said all that, Vettel is a great driver; I just wish we could put him in the Ferrari so he can really show his mettle!

  21. Bill, 1 December 2012 02:06

    I really think you should rerun the end of 2007, the whole of 2008 and 2009 to see that Vettel already proved his mettle, if 3 consecutive world titles at age 25 vs a much better talent pool than Schumacher had to fight against (Roebucks words) already needed extra proving.

  22. Scott Coe, 1 December 2012 06:38

    To an extent, Bill, you are right; however, don’t forget that the 2008 Toro Rosso was the equal of the Red Bull (though neither were up to the level of the Ferrari and McLaren). And in 2009 he blew hot and cold – against some superb wins, you have to balance Monaco, where he was holding up the field and wearing out his tyres in no time…

    Nevertheless, he has proved he is mostly a brilliant driver, and in 2011 he was truly ahead of everyone with his 11 wins, and I shouldn’t have forgotten about that! But Newey gives him better raw materials to work with than any other team – after all, if he could make such as Damon Hill and Jacques Villeneuve champions…

  23. Bill, 1 December 2012 08:02

    Yes, but McLaren had Newey for 10 years: how many 3 times consecutive world champions did that combo deliver?

    Neeys good, prolly the best but you need an outstanding driver too to deliver results with a great car.

  24. Piero Dessimone, 1 December 2012 08:17

    Interesting evaluation but according to me Vettel is in nr.1 position because we won more races than Alonso and 3 championship in a row. Grosjean should not be in the top 10. Rosberg should be there: he won a Grand Prix. Perez and Hulkenberg should be in the top ten but behind the drivers that won a race,

  25. Scott Coe, 1 December 2012 09:08

    True, they only won 2 WDCs with Mika Hakkinen and 1 WCC. However, I have read articles in which Newey’s influence at McLaren was suppressed somewhat. This may have led to him (almost) accepting the Jaguar job in 2001 before Ron Dennis sweet-talked him into staying (if I remember rightly, one of the selling points was the chance to help McLaren with their Americas’ Cup yachting programme!). RBR, meanwhile, give him a far freer rein.

    This is in no way to denigrate Vettel’s efforts – indeed the fact that he won three consecutive WDCs while competing against one of F1′s strongest fields is testament to his brilliance, as Bill rightly says. It’s good that we can debate so freely on this, though – imagine trying to do so in 2000-2004, when there was really no doubt who was the best in that period…

  26. Bill, 1 December 2012 16:02

    Hahaha, so the excuse ‘he drives a Newey car’ works only when the latter gets a more free reign? That is not very fair ;) Or accurate.

    He had to deal with a lot more restraint at Williams, in fact it was his constant fight with Patrick Head wich drove him to McLaren in the first place. Still, that restrained relationship with Williams yielded 4 drivers titles, and 4 constructors titles.

    Then theres the fact Red Bull runs a smaller budget than McLaren, at least before the RRA, a fact both Horner and Newey, glowing of pride, repeatedly stated on the various media.

    Then theres the fact Red Bull runs an engine about 30 bhp down on he Ferrari and Mercedes units. You start to wonder just exactly how dominant Vettel would be if he had an engine equal to them. Or, dare I say it, an engine 30 bhp stronger than the Mercedes and Ferrari units.

    In that respect 2014 cannot come quick enough, and Renault gets a chance to fight more on parity with these other 2 engine manufacturers.

    I know you dont denigrate Vettels achievements, Scott, but the constant reference to Newey isnt right in my humble opinion.

  27. Pat O'Brien, 1 December 2012 18:14

    I’d make Vettel and Alonso co-#1. The two of them had fewer errors than anyone possibly excepting Kimi. If not for putting himself in a position to be rammed by Maldonado, this year’s performance from Hamilton deserves equal status with V & A. I hope he keeps maturing process, he’s the fastest and most exciting driver in the business (that drive at Silverstone in the rain a few years back has to be among the top five all time). I cringe when I hear about his management aiming to turn him into an international celebrity, a la Beckham. No risk that happens to Vettel so I expect more of the same from him.

    The carping re Vettel’s having had the best car probably continues until he switches teams. The only thing for certain is he has done everything asked of him without any signs of cracking under the pressure and he has put his teammate in the shade just as Webber had done the same to everyone whom he had partnered.

  28. NaBUru38, 1 December 2012 20:34

    This is an amazing piece, sir. It’s both fact-based and stylish.

  29. Rich Ambroson, 2 December 2012 06:23

    Kind of hard on Riccardo Patrese, eh?

    I completely agreed however with your piece on Kimi. I was skeptical as well, and more than pleasantly surprised by his season. I agree, the modern F1 driver has been forced (and chosen to be in general) too frilly. Kimi as you’ve noted might go a bit far, but I prefer his disdain for pretension over the average corporate drivebot.

  30. Ray in Toronto Canada, 6 December 2012 18:25

    I was looking back at my own list (1st post following the main article) and other’s lists in this forum and what I find stunning is that Hulkenberg – who I (as others) put 5th ahead of the likes of Button, Webber and Rosberg – may just well have burried di Resta’s career at the Sharp End.

    We won’t know it for another two years, of course, because Hulkenberg is yet to be paired-up with an Ace at a team such as Ferrari, McLaren, RBR or Mercedes.

    By the summer of next year, Webber, Massa and some others – including Raikkonen – will be looking to either continue or go elsewhere. Unfortunately Hulkenberg will only be up against Gutierrez…so, without a proper benchmark, The Hulk will have to “show” on his own…and he’ll need to blow away Gutierrez.

    The betting is that Hulkenberg is on his way to a Grandee.

    So, for me what’s stunning is that, about 6 or 7 months ago ,pundits were talking about di Resta taking over Schumacher’s seat.

    Well, The Hulk blew his doors in…and now no pundit worth his salt is talking about the Scot any more.


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