is unveiling its top 100 drivers and riders from across the motorsport world from 2018 with a countdown on each day until New Year’s Eve! Check back tomorrow for the top 80-61 entries, and let us know in the comments if we’ve made the right choices.

100. Bradley Ray - British Superbikes, 6th

A standout rookie campaign in 2017 as top Suzuki rider gave Ray momentum going into 2018 and in freezing conditions at the season opener at Donington Park he became the surprise early championship leader with a dominant double victory.

Despite never dipping outside of the top six in the standings, the 21-year-old’s campaign floundered throughout the summer rounds until Cadwell Park where a timely double podium gathered enough points to ultimately secure a Showdown spot.

Top 10 of F1 2018 Moments

While his season ended with disappointing results for sixth place in the championship, Ray also caught the eye with a World Superbike wildcard debut plus a sparkling maiden Suzuka 8 Hour outing with the factory Suzuki squad.

99. Juri Vips - European Formula 3, 4th

Following up on his title-winning 2017 ADAC Formula 4 season, Vips made the step up to FIA European Formula 3 with Motopark. After an initial slow start to his rookie campaign, Vips impressed with his raw pace and race-craft, scoring a maiden win at third round at the Norisring.

It proved a breakthrough weekend for the 18-year-old Estonian, who went on to claim a second-place finish in the Norisring finale, before three more victories followed at Silverstone, Misano and Hockenheim as he rounded out the season a strong fourth in the championship, and runner-up in the Rookies’ standings.

98. Carlos Sainz Snr – Dakar Rally 2018, champion

One of very few members of this year’s 2018 list to gain a spot exclusively from one event but at the age of 55 claiming victory at one of the most gruelling races on the planet is a feat that could not be ignored.

Sainz, a winner of the Dakar Rally in 2010 with Volkswagen, had come close on a couple of occasions but in 2018 luck and strategy came together as his rivals faltered to allow him to charge into the lead on the closing stages despite taking just two stage wins across the entire event.

97. Xavi Fores – World Superbike championship, 7th

The standout non-factory World Superbike rider across the past three seasons, Fores picked up where he left off in 2018 with an eye-catching campaign which included five trips to the rostrum to see him secure the Independents’ title.

Fores found greater consistency to go with his standout performances this year, most notably second place in Thailand’s race one, while in race two in Argentina he was the sole rider who could take the challenge to the dominance of Jonathan Rea. Reputation enhanced over the past three years, Fores heads for a fresh challenge in British Superbikes and a factory Honda ride in 2019.

96. Max Fewtrell - Formula Renault Eurocup, 1st

The 2016 British F4 champion turned in convincing title assault in his second year in the Formula Renault Eurocup. Fewtrell scored six victories and six pole positions on his way to beating fellow Renault Formula 1 Academy driver Christian Lundgaard to the championship crown.

A stretch of six consecutive races on the podium - including three straight wins across German rounds at the Nurburgring and Hockenheim - proved key to his success as title rival Lundgaard suffered back-to-back retirements.

95. Robert Shwartzman - European Formula 3, 3rd

Ferrari junior Shwartzman headed into his maiden European F3 campaign off the back of winning the 2018 Toyota Racing Series - his first championship title in single-seaters - having previously finished third in the Formula Renault Eurocup and Italian F4 championships.

A remarkably consistent run of 18 races inside in the points during the second half of 2018 enabled Shwartzman to rise up the championship order, while the 19-year-old Russian’s form also helped him achieve the Rookies’ title with two victories in the final two events of the year.

94. Artem Markelov - Formula 2, 5th

While Markelov was unable to improve on his second-place finish in the 2017 standings, the Russian Time driver continued his usual standards of eccentric race-craft and memorable performances across the course of the season.

Early-season car troubles thwarted Markelov’s qualifying results but that did not stop him from storming to the podium from a pitlane start in the Bahrain season-opener, which he followed up with victory in the sprint race. Despite not adding to his tally of three wins in the second half of the campaign, a consistent run was enough to secure fifth place in the championship in his fifth and final year in the series.

93. Ho-Pin Tung – WEC LMP2, 1st (season ongoing)

The only remaining member of Jackie Chan DC Racing’s 2017 Le Mans-winning line-up to continue through to 2018, Ho-Pin Tung has emerged as team leader once again for the Chinese outfit in the FIA World Endurance Championship.

Partnering Stephane Richelmi and silver-rated Gabriel Aubry in the #37 Oreca 07 Gibson, Tung has picked up three wins in the opening five rounds of the WEC Super Season, putting the trio in the lead of the drivers’ championship at the end of the calendar year.

While a second Le Mans win eluded Tung, the Dutch-born Chinese racer has once again established himself as one of the lead runners in the WEC’s LMP2 class this year, 12 months on from the agonising defeat in Bahrain to Rebellion Racing.

92. Andrea Iannone – MotoGP, 10th

A campaign of ‘what ifs’ for the mercurial Italian rider who still produced the second-best MotoGP campaign of his career despite being told by Suzuki he’d be let go at the end of 2018. Four podiums across the campaign, including second place at Phillip Island, masked missed opportunities having been favoured for victory in Australia.

It was certainly not a disastrous season but one which promised much but ultimately under-delivered having seen Alex Rins end the year in fifth place in the standings in just his second year in the premier class.

91. Marco Melandri – World Superbike, 5th

A second unpredictable Italian rider in a row, with Melandri starting the year with a storming double victory at Phillip Island, but it proved to be his only wins of the season as he struggled for consistency on the aging Racing Ducati Panigale R.

Melandri eventually slipped to fifth place in the riders’ standings, scoring almost 60 points fewer than teammate Chaz Davies, in a frustrating campaign for the Italian.

90. Can Oncu – Red Bull Rookies, 1st, CEV Moto3 Junior World Championship 7th, Moto3, 24th

The Turkish teenager made history in November with victory on debut as a Moto3 wildcard for Red Bull KTM in Valencia by becoming the youngest-ever Grand Prix winner aged 15 years and 115 days while also the first rider to win on debut since Noboru Ueda achieved the feat back in 1991.

Can Oncu, along with twin brother Deniz, had already been catching the eye in the Red Bull Rookies’ Cup storming to a 1-2 – with Can claiming the title – while also impressing in the CEV Moto3 Junior class with seventh place in the final riders’ standings highlighted by three rostrums.Not turning 16 until late July next year, Oncu benefits from a 2018 rule change to compete at the level he’s already reached and all eyes will turn to the Turk ahead of his rookie Moto3 campaign next season.



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