Just like the real thing, asking our readers to vote for the driver they think has excelled more than any other over the first 'half' of the 2014 F1 season produced a two-horse race for top spot - just not involving the drivers you might expect....

With F1 now on its annual summer hiatus, we wanted to know who you thought had been the driver of the year so far, and listed the 16 individuals to have scored points as the choices to pick from. That list include the three race winners - Nico Rosberg, Lewis Hamilton and Daniel Ricciardo - as well as rookies Daniil Kvyat and Kevin Magnussen, and unexpected surprises Valtteri Bottas and Jules Bianchi, amongst others, with the Dane and the Finn being two of the six to have made podium appearances over the first eleven rounds.

In the end, two drivers emerged head-and-shoulders above everyone else, but it was not the Mercedes whitewash you might have imagined....

Instead, the battle for supremacy was between Hamilton, who has battled misfortune more often than not since claiming four wins on the bounce earlier in the year, and Ricciardo, who has overshadowed four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel since joining the German at Red Bull Racing.

In the end, Hamilton just edged the ballot, claiming 1089 votes to Ricciardo's 1061, with no-one else within 300 of the top two. Hamilton's share of the poll was 31.08 percent, with Ricciardo claiming 30.37 percent.

Fernando Alonso's typically feisty performances in an under-performing Ferrari garnered the Spaniard third spot on 695 votes - a shade under a fifth of the 3500 cast in total - with the impressive Bottas underlining Williams' resurgence in fourth place, with 291.

All of which left championship leader Nico Rosberg down in fifth place - one he is unaccustomed to featuring in this season - with a paltry 97 votes.

Behind the German, Magnussen completed the top six, with Kimi Raikkonen a somewhat surprising seventh, despite enduring a trying return to Maranello alongside Alonso. The Finnish veteran polled enough votes - 41 - to edge ahead of Force India's Nico Hulkenberg, who only saw a 100 per cent scoring record to match Alonso's end at the Hungaroring, with Vettel and Kvyat rounding out the top ten.

All 16 drivers polled at least four votes, with French duo Romain Grosjean and Jean-Eric Vergne bringing up the rear.

The result is sure to provoke a mixed reaction amongst F1 fans, so feel free to join the debate in the comments section below....

For the record, the full result can be found HERE.


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