After each grand prix weekend, evaluates each driver’s performance and gives them a rating.

After 22 races, here’s who performed best based on their average rating.

20th: Nicholas Latifi - 4.55

Best rating: 8 (Britain, Japan)

Worst rating: 1 (Saudi Arabia)

Starting off this list is Nicholas Latifi. After a solid end to 2021, the Canadian had high hopes going into 2022 alongside new teammate Alex Albon. Latifi never got to grips with the new ground effect cars (as well as the Williams car simply having no downforce), with a number of high profile mistakes in the first half of the season. His errors, combined with a lack of pace, ultimately led to Williams replacing him for F1 2023 in favour of Logan Sargeant. He scored points in Japan after an inspired strategy call, earning him his best rating of the season.

19th: Daniel Ricciardo - 5.68

Best rating: 8 (Mexico)

Worst rating: 3 (USA)

Another driver that won’t be on the grid next year will be Daniel Ricciardo. Ricciardo was comfortably the second-worst driver this season, finishing an astonishing 85 points behind McLaren teammate Lando Norris in the final F1 standings. He did score some big results on occasions (fifth in Singapore; seventh in Mexico), but those finishes were mainly down to good strategy decisions from McLaren rather than his impressive pace. 

18th: Mick Schumacher - 6.00

Best rating: 9 (Austria)

Worst rating: 4 (Emilia Romagna, Monaco, Azerbaijan)

Mick Schumacher is also without a drive for 2023 after Haas gave Nico Hulkenberg the nod instead. Schumacher’s run of shunts in the first half of the year, combined with a failure to extract the most from the Haas when it was most competitive, proved to be his undoing. He shined at the Austrian Grand Prix with a strong drive to the points, but these highs were few and far between, even if he did get the better of Kevin Magnussen more often than not in the second half of the season.

17th: Yuki Tsunoda - 6.10

Best rating: 9 (Emilia Romagna)

Worst rating: 3 (Singapore)

Yuki Tsunoda enjoyed a steady rate of improvement in 2022. Perhaps 17th on our list isn’t a fair reflection on the AlphaTauri’s gains this year, but certainly, he’s worthy of a third year with Red Bull’s junior outfit. Tsunoda’s best weekend came at Imola, where he finished seventh.

16th: Zhou Guanyu - 6.14

Best rating: 9 (Azerbaijan, Canada)

Worst rating: 4 (Emilia Romagna)

F1’s only rookie - Zhou Guanyu - performed beyond most fans’ expectations. While he took six or seven races to get up to speed, once he did in Azerbaijan, he was a solid match for Valtteri Bottas. Zhou out-qualified Bottas on eight occasions throughout the year. Even though four of those were in wet/changeable conditions, Zhou deserves credit for the way he improved throughout the campaign and the few mistakes he made along the way. Zhou needs to start capitalising on the weekends Alfa Romeo have a top 10 car - something he didn’t do, even in the second half of the year.

15th: Lance Stroll - 6.23

Best rating: 8 (Hungary, Netherlands)

Worst rating: 4 (Australia, Azerbaijan, USA)

Qualifying continues to be Lance Stroll’s achilles heel, but when it comes to race starts and Sunday performances, he’s a solid midfield performer. He was never quite on Sebastian Vettel’s pace when the four-time champion was at his best, Stroll remains a solid albeit uninspiring second driver, with his notable weekends coming at the Hungaroring and Zandvoort.

14th: Pierre Gasly - 6.36

Best rating: 10 (Azerbaijan)

Worst rating: 3 (Austria)

Just six points finishes for Pierre Gasly in 2022. AlphaTauri did struggle immensely relative to last year, but it seemed that Gasly lost his spark towards the end of the season, particularly when the news that he would be joining Alpine was announced. His best race of the season was in Azerbaijan, finishing fifth on the day. 

13th: Kevin Magnussen - 6.55

Best rating: 10 (Bahrain, Brazil)

Worst rating: 4 (Italy)

Magnussen enjoyed a mighty start to the season, picking up a perfect score at the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix. The Dane performed his best when Haas was at its most competitive. As previously mentioned, Magnussen did seem to dip in the second half of the year, allowing Schumacher to regularly out-race him. Regardless, it was a great return for Magnussen after a year out.

12th: Valtteri Bottas - 6.68

Best rating: 9 (Emilia Romagna)

Worst rating: 4 (USA)

Life with Alfa Romeo started brilliantly for Bottas, scoring points in seven of the opening eight races. Taking just the opening seven races into account, Bottas had an average rating of 7.85. However, as Alfa Romeo slipped back, so did Bottas. He went on an incredible pointless streak between Canada and Mexico - teammate Zhou scored just once in this period, showing it wasn’t all down to the Finn. A bit like his Mercedes career, incredible on his day but not at that level quite often enough.

11th: Alex Albon - 6.95

Best rating: 10 (Australia, Belgium)

Worst rating: 3 (Singapore)

Albon deserves immense credit with how he performed on his return to F1 with Williams. The former Red Bull driver’s domination of Nicholas Latifi was in fashion to George Russell. Albon was 0.544% quicker than Latifi in qualifying across the year, compared to Russell who was 0.432% ahead of the Canadian on average. Granted, Latifi struggled considerably more with this year’s Williams, but it doesn’t take anything away from how impressive Albon was.

10th: Carlos Sainz - 7.09

Best rating: 9 (Monaco, Canada, France)

Worst rating: 2 (Australia)

It was an underwhelming year for Carlos Sainz in 2022. Let’s not forget he managed to out-score Charles Leclerc during his first year with Ferrari. Sainz struggled in the first portion of the year with the handling of the F1-75, never managing to get in the fight with Leclerc or Max Verstappen. Once he found his form, it was too late, with Ferrari slipping back considerably, even behind Mercedes on occasions. A formidable driver on his day, but there’s still doubts whether he has that Verstappen or Lewis Hamilton level of quality and consistency throughout an entire campaign. 

9th: Esteban Ocon - 7.14

Best rating: 10 (Austria, Japan)

Worst rating: 5 (Emilia Romagna, USA)

It was the first time in his F1 career that Esteban Ocon managed to out-score a teammate. While it doesn’t tell the full story (given Fernando Alonso’s long list of reliability troubles), Ocon enjoyed a strong season. He was at his best in Austria and Japan, picking up perfect scores.

8th: Sebastian Vettel - 7.15

Best rating: 10 (USA)

Worst rating: 1 (Australia)

Even though he called time on his F1 career, Vettel enjoyed a mini-renaissance in 2022. Without his abysmal Australia weekend, Vettel would have been seventh in our final rankings. Six points finishes in the second half of the year aided Aston Martin’s charge up the constructors’ championship. Had it not been for operational errors in USA and Abu Dhabi (pit stop and strategy), the team would have beaten Alfa Romeo to sixth - mostly down to Vettel’s brilliance.

7th: Sergio Perez - 7.32

Best rating: 10 (Singapore)

Worst rating: 5 (Canada)

Next up is Sergio Perez. After a poor first year with the Red Bull, Perez was clearly more comfortable in the RB18. He took his first pole in Saudi Arabia, before claiming a sensational (well, now controversial) win in Monaco. He soon slipped back into his 2021 form, struggling to adapt to the development route Red Bull decided to go down. He picked up his form again in the latter half of the season, with his best drive of the year in Singapore. 

6th: George Russell - 7.50

Best rating: 10 (Brazil)

Worst rating: 2 (Singapore)

Russell’s first year with Mercedes couldn’t have gone much better. He managed to out-score Hamilton, becoming just the third teammate to do so after Jenson Button (2011) and Nico Rosberg (2016). He also took his first pole position (Hungary) and race win (Brazil). His consistency, race craft against Verstappen (Spain and Brazil standout) are big positives for Russell. However, it’s still fair to question whether he has the alien speed of Verstappen, Leclerc or even Hamilton to lead Mercedes in the future. 

5th: Lewis Hamilton - 7.73

Best rating: 10 (Spain, Canada, France, Hungary, USA)

Worst rating: 3 (Singapore)

2022 was a year of firsts for Hamilton. No win, no pole position and his worst championship finish (sixth) in his F1 career. Was it really that bad? The fact that Hamilton is fifth in our ratings should tell you the final standings don’t tell the full story. Once Mercedes stopped experimenting with his car, Hamilton quickly got on top of Russell. While that elusive race victory did avoid him, a combination of bad luck and poor strategy meant it was never a realistic possibility. 2022 wasn’t a vintage year for Hamilton, but he showed enough to say he’s far from finished.

4th: Fernando Alonso 7.77

Best rating: 10 (USA)

Worst rating: 6 (Bahrain, Emilia Romagna, Miami)

The veteran Spaniard was back to his near best in 2022, with poor reliability ultimately costing Alonso. He reckons the various issues he suffered this year cost him “60 to 70 points” - when you look into it, he’s not wrong. He earned his best rating of the year in Austin, recovering from a scary crash with Stroll to finish in the points.

3rd: Lando Norris - 7.91

Best rating: 10 (Emilia Romagna, USA)

Worst rating: 6 (Bahrain, Canada)

Like in 2021, Norris continues to show why he’s among the best drivers in F1. 122 points in the fifth-fastest car (on balance) is an incredible achievement. He delivers in every qualifying session, making very few mistakes. McLaren have a star on their hands, and they need to give him a car capable of challenging at the front sooner rather than later. He got a 10 rating for his podium at Imola and starring drive in Austin.

2nd: Charles Leclerc - 8.32

Best rating: 10 (Bahrain, Australia, Spain, Monaco, Austria)

Worst rating: 4 (France)

Like in actual F1 standings, Leclerc finishes runner-up in our 2022 driver ratings. He scored five perfect scores throughout the year. Leclerc was stunning in qualifying, taking nine pole positions. Sundays didn’t necessarily go to plan often enough for him, but it wouldn’t be fair to put the blame on him, rather Ferrari’s poor reliability and strategy choices. A fine year overall.

1st: Max Verstappen - 9.00

Best rating: 10 (Emilia Romagna, Miami, Canada, Hungary, Belgium, Netherlands, Italy, Japan, USA, Mexico, Abu Dhabi)

Worst rating: 3 (Singapore)

Verstappen’s 2022 title-winning campaign will go down as one of the best ever from an individual driver. It was a record-breaking campaign for the Dutchman, storming to 15 victories, two more than Sebastian Vettel (2013) and Michael Schumacher (2003). More impressively, Red Bull didn’t have the fastest car up until the Belgian Grand Prix, but even then, the title was more or less in the bag. A faultless season.