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F1: Driver of the year so far….. revealed

The poll to discover who you think has been the stand-out F1 performer of 2014 so far produced a typically close battle at the front, but who came out on top?
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.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
27.07.2014- Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP) Scuderia Ferrari F14-T
27.07.2014- Race, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB10
25.07.2014- Free Practice 2, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05
22.06.2014- Race, Start of the race
27.04.2017 - Geoff Willis (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 Technology Director
27.04.2017 - Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 VJM010
27.04.2017 - Esteban Ocon (FRA) Sahara Force India F1 VJM10
27.04.2017 - Sergey Sirotkin (RUS) Renault Sport F1 Team RS17 Third Driver
27.04.2017 - Jolyon Palmer (GBR) Renault Sport F1 Team RS17 and Sergey Sirotkin (RUS) Renault Sport F1 Team RS17 Third Driver
Fernando Alonso trials the Indy 500 sim [credit: McLaren Honda Andretti]
Romain Grosjean, 2017 Bahrain Grand Prix, Haas F1 Team (credit Haas)
The Mercedes AMG F1 of Valtteri Bottas (FIN) is recovered back to the pits.
Pascal Wehrlein (GER) Sauber F1 Team 
Pascal Wehrlein (GER) Sauber F1 Team 
Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL) McLaren F1 
Sergey Sirotkin (RUS) Renault Sport F1 Team  
Sergey Sirotkin (RUS) Renault Sport F1 Team  
Sergey Sirotkin (RUS) Renault Sport F1 Team  

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August 13, 2014 2:15 PM
Last Edited 982 days ago

Annoying statements aside, Hamilton has had some truly fantastic drives and really shown his intent on track in the championship battle. He's definitely been one of the best, like him or not. Personally I don't. But to me, the most impressive has easily been Ricciardo. I remember discussing this before the season, that I thought Dan had the right attitude to get in there and challenge Vettel in the long term - but I never expected him in a million years to have the upper hand from the get go. And by quite the margin, too. And sure, it's probably true that Vettel has had a hard time adapting to the new gen cars, but he's had 11 races to get there now and Dan is still faster. And Vettel is a 4-time champ, the darling of the team and the management. What Dan has achieved this year really is huge.

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