Losers

Pierre Gasly 

Gasly endured a torrid home weekend which looked promising after AlphaTauri introduced their new upgrade package.

The Frenchman was knocked out in Q1 and the decision to start on the hards proved costly due to the untimely Safety Car.

Unfortunately for Gasly, neither he nor AlphaTauri have lived up to expectations so far in 2022, particularly compared to last year when he was consistently in the top six.

Charles Leclerc & Ferrari 

Another major blow to Leclerc and Ferrari’s title ambitions this year.

Leclerc’s shunt on Lap 18 from the race lead was compounded by the team’s confusing strategy with the recovering Carlos Sainz, who started from the back of the grid due to engine penalties.

Sunday’s race epitomised Ferrari’s season so far and why they’re so far behind Verstappen and Red Bull.

Sergio Perez

A shocking weekend for Perez who looked out of sorts up until qualifying.

Perez lost out to Hamilton at the start and despite having race-winning machinery, struggled to compete with the seven-time champion.

He was then caught napping by Russell on the Virtual Safety Car restart, dropping to fourth.

It should have been a 1-2 finish for Red Bull given the issues for Leclerc and Sainz.

Alfa Romeo

After a promising start to the season, competing with McLaren and Alpine for fourth in the constructors’ championship, Alfa Romeo keep going backwards.

Not only in the development race, but their new clutch system for this weekend, developed by Ferrari, didn’t seem to work.

Starting from 11th on the grid, Bottas dropped to 17th on the opening lap.

Alfa Romeo need to pick up their form again soon with Haas not too far behind and expected to introduce a sizeable upgrade in Hungary.

Winners

Max Verstappen

Another perfect day for the reigning F1 world champion as he moved 63 points clear of Charles Leclerc in the drivers’ championship. 

A second drivers’ title is a near-certainty on current form with Verstappen’s incredible consistency and error-free driving putting him well clear of the rest.

Before Leclerc’s DNF, the race was in the balance with Verstappen stopping early to get track position over his rival.

Leclerc would have stopped later and rejoined behind the Dutchman, although on significantly fresher tyres.

Would he have overtaken the Red Bull driver? Who knows how it would have played out. 

Regardless, it was another classy performance from Verstappen ahead of F1’s race at the Hungaroring, a track that no doubt will favour Ferrari.

Mercedes

Remarkably, Mercedes’ 2-3 finish at Paul Ricard is their first double podium finish of the season.

Expectations were high for the eight-time champions going into the weekend but they didn’t live up to them as Lewis Hamilton qualified nearly one whole second off pole position.

However, race day was more encouraging for the team given that both Hamilton and George Russell beat Sergio Perez on merit.

Hamilton was able to stick with Verstappen fairly well albeit lacking a couple of tenths to really challenge for the victory.

Alpine

Alpine moved into fourth in the constructors’ championship after another tidy race from Fernando Alonso.

In typical Alonso fashion, the Spaniard was fast off the line on the opening lap, moving up to fifth ahead of Mercedes’ George Russell.

Once the race settled down, Alonso was comfortable in sixth ahead of McLaren’s Lando Norris.

On the other side of the garage, Esteban Ocon continued his consistent run of finishing in the points with eighth, overtaking the other McLaren of Daniel Ricciardo late on.

Lance Stroll

It was a welcome return to the points for Stroll at the French Grand Prix. 

The Canadian made a storming start from 15th on the grid, running in 10th for the opening phase of the race. 

Stroll maintained that position until the end of the race, defending from Aston Martin teammate Sebastian Vettel.

While his defence received some criticism from fans after the race, it was smart from Stroll to keep the position on the final lap at his teammate’s expense.