Start, Sochi Autodrom, 2016

Rate the race: 2016 Russian Grand Prix

2016 Russian Grand Prix

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What did you think of today’s race? Share your verdict on the Russian Grand Prix.

Since 2008, F1 Fanatic has held polls on every F1 race to find out which fans thought of each round of the season.

Join in the latest poll and give your verdict on the race: 10 being the highest and 1 the lowest. Please vote based on how entertaining and exciting you thought the race was, not on how your preferred driver or team performed.

What were the best and worst moments of the race? What was the main thing you’ll remember about it? Rate the race out of ten and leave a comment below:

Rate the 2016 Russian Grand Prix out of ten

  • 10 (1%)
  • 9 (0%)
  • 8 (5%)
  • 7 (19%)
  • 6 (28%)
  • 5 (19%)
  • 4 (14%)
  • 3 (7%)
  • 2 (3%)
  • 1 (3%)

Total Voters: 528

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1 = ‘Terrible’, 10 = ‘Perfect’

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Keith Collantine
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163 comments on “Rate the race: 2016 Russian Grand Prix”

  1. The poor design of the circuit helped contribute to the unnecessary mess at the start, and other than that the strategy was hardly exciting, and the racing was simply woeful. Mercedes had such a pace advantage that it was blatantly clear that Hamilton pretty much had second place in the bag. This really needed the Ultra Soft tyre.


    1. The only positive is that with 71% of open throttle no one was expecting much from anyone but Mercedes. Mercedes failed to spice the race and the mess at the start provided for another anti-climatic race.

    2. – The poor design of the circuit helped contribute to the unnecessary mess at the start

      Thank you for mentioning that.
      I don’t know what Tilke and whoever else were smoking when they thought that kind of twist in that corner would be a good idea bearing in mind the number of cars that will be barreling at top speed into that bottle neck. The angle and the twist that follows is simply crazy.
      I do like the layout of the circuit and the venue (I know I’m in the minority here) but that nasty angle needs to go. I wonder if Tilke ever tries driving any of his circuits.

      1. We wouldn’t want our drivers to have much difficulties. New tracks should avoid using corners at all costs, best to use twi simple straight lines conected by two 180° turns. T2 didn’t do anything that T1 in for example Spa or Monza does. This was just a mess (fourth in a row) by a overoptimistic amateur.

        1. The turn 1 is basically a fast chicane. It is the worst kind of corner for overtaking and racing side by side. It is not that it is difficult corner. It is just very badly designed. Basically if you want to have two cars go side by side there first of all both need to slow down a lot. This never happens so one car has to go wide. It is a corner with one line through it.

          We had couple of instances in the race where cars were trying to go side by side and race there. Unless one car clearly gave up before the corner the aftermath was always the same. The car outside was pushed off the track because to be fast there you need to be left side of the track an entry, then hit apex at right side, then other apex at the left side and then get back to all the way to the right again. Everytime a car has to move from one side of the road to other it gets expotentially harder to race there. This why chicanes like abu dhabi suck for overtaking.

          The corner should be reworked into slow-medium speed right hander followed by another medium corner that opens up. That would allow cars to go side by side there, it would make the corner better to drive, it would remove the need for rediculous traffic bollard, it would stop track cutting being a silly topic of discussion because nobody wants to talk about drivers going over lines painted on the tarmac. Just move the 2nd apex a lot further away and it becomes great overtaking corner which feeds cars going 2 wide into the next right hander and into the long left hander. Now it prevents it.

          That or make it monza t1 style chicane. The way it is now is horrible. One of the worst corners in f1 for overtaking, for corner cutting and for pointless drama.

      2. Mr Tilke is a European bureaucrat. When people like him are given a narrow brief and a
        budget to match, and they then deliver the least costly, least troublesome programmed result.

        Racing qualities ?

        I doubt if the quality of the racing has even the slightest influence when set against the
        the box-ticking, ego-of-the-customer-massaging boxes Mr Tilke ticks comfortably from
        his skyscraper office.

        The very idea of producing a modern equivalent of, say, Spa or Laguna Seca would
        probably produce a fainting fit !
        ( ‘….but that might be…..dangerously exciting….!’…sits in expensive leather chair
        and waits while even more expensive secretary pours out a restoratively large glass of
        something VERY expensive…..)

    3. I’might not sure if Raikkonen was not asleep at the restart he could have come 2nd. The current circuit design challenges the drivers some were resting their necks in turn 3 the start is not the fault of the circuit but of some drivers, especially the Torpedo but then he is young and Grosjean used to be the same but is now a very good driver.

      1. Yepp, from screaming V8 to whispering V6 contribute most of that …Raikkonen fell asleep.

    4. Agree with the 3/10. Very boring race that was screaming for the Ultrasoft tyre.

      But Bernie is too busy saving that Ultrasoft for a Monaco debut because he can never kiss enough backside for that show.

      1. 3/10 the start was a good excitment but after that the race bleed dead.. I think the circuit need major modification or the tyres need to be much softer.

    5. Magnussen with a car qualified as 17th goes 7th. Sky sport gives top rating to Mercedes drivers + Magnussen. But Mercedes drivers have the car to perform. Magnussen didn’t. And with Magnussen’s bad luck ended, and he shows just what he can do. Driver of the race – no doubt.

      Putin and Ecclestone…gotta puke!

  2. 3/10, a little bit of excitement at first, but even that turned out to be anti-climatic. Bad race and bad result for the WDC.

  3. Zantkiller (@)
    1st May 2016, 14:38

    Average race.
    Nothing more, nothing less.

  4. Steve (@stevelloydf1)
    1st May 2016, 14:39

    So, so dull. Thank God it’s Spain next.

    Right… I’m off to watch the football

    1. Lol, what makes you think that Spain will be any better?

      1. It’s a nice track and the tire strategies will be more interesting too.

      2. Clearly he was joking. Spain will be worse. Which is why he is going to watch football instead.

    2. Barcelona is hardly a classic track……….

      1. @paulguitar Because it is longer on the calender, that automatically implies a good race. *Sarcasm off*

        1. Steve (@stevelloydf1)
          1st May 2016, 17:12

          ^ Love it :)

      2. indeed, while its a long standing race and we might remember some remarkable races there during the years they race at Barcelona, the track rarely gives us exciting races @xtwl, @paulguitar, sorry to disappoint you @stevelloydf1

  5. Alonso gets his wish.

  6. Adam (@rocketpanda)
    1st May 2016, 14:40

    Rather dull to be honest – was largely over by the first pitstop. Extremely beige.

    Good to see Magnussen getting Renault into the points, and Alonso/Button for McLaren.

    1. Big Mag (@)
      1st May 2016, 14:47

      What a drive from KMag. Please Renault keep this guy next year.

      1. You are his father, so probably not totally objective? ;o)

        But yes, I agree!

  7. Very boring race on a rubbish track. Surely Rosberg’s title to lose as he is being very lucky and it’s pretty much being handed to him on a silver plate. 3/10.

    1. Can agrew with you … He didnt made any mistakes …. He deserved all the victories…

      1. I have no problem with Rosberg winning, as there always is only one winner. However I’m not really sure I would say ‘He desrved all the victories’, because as much as he has not made any mistakes, he has also had negligible competition or challenge from any other drivers, and may well go down in history and the World Champion with the least overtakes throughout the season.

        Just my humble opinion.

      2. Easy when he’s basically racing himself.

      3. Nico has shown that he is a very good driver and no one is taking away his victories from him. In fact the angst fans have is not directed at Nico but at what is appearing to be an effort, starting from the out-of-the-blues clutch overhaul orchestrated by FOM (Lewis again had a horrible start), and now to the engine problems plaguing the guy after thousands of miles of tests carried out by Merc.
        No one is yet to say why other Mercedes engines are nearly bullet proof while Hams’ keeps encountering problems as we saw even in the race in which he had to back off.
        So Nico is good but the desire to have another winner that isn’t Hamilton is making he season noncompetitive. And it is quite rightly raising questions from fans.

        1. no sensible person is asking questions, only people who don’t understand how engines work and are unfamiliar with probability.

          1. I don’t think you know how probability works then. If you have two identicle cars the chances of one car having 4 failures are 6.25% how’s that for probability…?

          2. Well no offence but as a mechanical engineer with two higher degrees one of which is a doctorate, I have some knowledge of the two components you identify in your post. The suggestion that there is ‘nothing amiss’ and it’s just luck after the faultless running of many other such engines and an astonishing testing regime is doing Mercedes and LH a huge disservice. There is clearly an issue. There is without doubt a fault. There is without doubt, considerable work being undertaken to find out what and resolve it. So far it has not been successful.

            There are many happily promoting NR and hoping (actually wanting) further issues for Lewis but if you feel your chap gets kudos for winning races only by being given a head start that says more about you than the fact he has always been happy to accept any disadvantage his team mate endures. And for the record. LH has endured more issues than NR. That is easily researched via the web. In particular the issues each endure during the weekend. The statistics are on this site. After all when did NR last start from the back? Yet regardless he has been beaten. Reliability or not. Suggesting ‘oh something will happen to NR’ is trite. It has not at any time evened out and it has not yet happened. It may make Bernie and Sky happy but a fair head to head, it is not. As for suggesting further penalties for Lewis in turn 2 (EF1) you really are getting silly in the probability stakes after Kvyats behaviour.

            The major issue is the sealing of the engines and components. If this has locked in an unknown issue that requires research then things are going to be difficult. They are locked into LH. As such whatever the fault is. It has to be found and eradicated. For all.

            The fact some appear to want further hurt or suggest it’s mercedes playing a game, well, the hate runs deep when you want this kind of championship and I am sure Bernie will help you out in the future.

          3. @james, @drg

            You know, those who speak the way @thetick does are in their numbers and each time they do, they expect you to listen and accept it as fact even when they have nothing to back their claims.
            The fact is none of us here know what goes on behind the scenes so majority of the things we say here are speculative so to dismiss people’s legitimate concerns based on the knowledge they have (as you guys have done in your comments) as “conspiracies” is insincere.
            But fact is a lot has been done to “spice up the show”, to decrease the monotony and to dethrone Lewis/Merc. But if Merc can’t be defeated, why not have a different winner?
            That is what you see playing out.
            Be very mindful that eventually the racing will get close but in the end, Nico will come out on top.
            Save this comment for reference.

    2. Yes yes, He has all the luck in the world. It’s getting old now…

  8. Something tells me Daniil won’t be racing there next year. That look on Vettel’s face, and Christian’s pat on the back though…

    1. VES was walking away with a big smile when he left the RBR pit wall after his retirement too.

    2. I guess you are right. Kvyat might just about to be starting his last F1 Spanish grand prix (at least with Redbull) next two weeks.
      I wonder who will take his place.

      1. Arnoud van Houwelingen
        1st May 2016, 15:43

        Obviously that will be Max Verstappen. They will announce it at Spa his home circuit with all th dutch cheering :)

        1. Thats terrible geography dear chap. Have a look at a map

        2. I don’t know why I am not so keen to see Max move to a major team yet. The reason for this being that I see him as someone who has major talent. I love watching him drive – the way he swings the car in and out of corners, around the track and sets the car up for overtakes is refreshing to see. He is a champion in the waiting but then he is still too young.
          And because of his age, I wish he would spend 2 more years in the mid filed before joining a major team. What most people don’t understand is that top F1 positions are brutal places for non-performers. Big teams are quite impatient and when their expectations are not met, out the door the person goes. And then it becomes hard for the person to get back into the sport.
          Because I would like to enjoy watching MV race in the front and eventually be a champion, I think he should not jeopardise that opportunity by moving too quickly to the front.
          If he does, he might risk having a short F1 career. And I think he is such a talent that a short career is not indicative of his potential. Of course it is only my opinion.

  9. Good job by Hamilton to get 2nd. Just settle for 2nd because his power units are more than the team wanted to use. As for the 1st corner, can these guys get out of the first corner without a collision? It’s 4/4 with first corner “chaos”. And for mercedes, because both drivers encountered issues, they better fix those before something else occurs. Pity for Vettel and Verstappen. Good drive from Alonso.

    PS: Vettel with Horner. Best moment of the race haha

    1. If you’re suggesting they have had an incident in every race so far they went through clean in Australia.

  10. Boring race indeed but that hardly is a result of the track being ‘boring’. T3 is one of those few corners on the calender that really shows what a F1 is. Monza is fun but there are plenty of cars that can go faster in a straight line, for example. There aren’t many cars that can corner like these can.

    Race was over by lap 23, Kimi lost 17 seconds by lap 33 to Hamilton so Ferrari not up to speed at all. Kvyat, what a mess, he might not have hit a championship contender but this crash was far worse than Grosjean in Spa back in 2012.

    1. @xtwl It’s the stop-start corners that make the circuit bad in my opinion + the 90° (semi stop-start) corners like the entire 3rd sector. Eau rouge isn’t the only reason Spa is a great circuit, just like T3 isn’t preventing the Sochi-track from being a boring/bad one.

      And Grosjean could have chopped Alonso’s head of that day, I think it was way worse than this incident!
      Still Kvyat’s career isn’t going to last very long at this rate.

      1. @gdewilde I agree the entire track isn’t that superb, but we have several of those on the calender. Even Mexico is one of them, Barcelona to name another one…

        The crash in Spa was worse, but if you look at the driver mistake made by Grosjean then and Kvyat now then I believe Kvyat made a more stupid mistake, especially the second hit. This is the fourth race in a row where drivers have hit each other properly in the first corner, this is the highest level of open wheel racing and that’s pretty pathetic.

    2. We have a new First Lap Nutcase (FLN). Kvyat’s days in RBR are numbered. Good work by K.Mag and the McLarens, also Grosjean.

  11. 4. Painfully dull. And Putin’s presence is nauseating.

    1. On the ‘Putin’ note:
      It’s a big shame Ecclestone is allowed to do it.

      1. ColdFly F1 (@)
        1st May 2016, 19:50

        5/10 for me, but I probably should have deducted a point for the weirdos who invaded the winners room and tried to get some tripadvisor input.

    2. What have you got against Putin, what’s your beef?

      1. I’m assuming you’re well aware of his oppression of homosexuals in Russia, but irrespective of his morality record just the presence of a dictat-like figure gratifying himself with his purchase is not what I consider good viewing.

        1. @vettel1
          Hehe, I was being a tad mischievous with my comment – we *all* know what Putin is all about. It just shows how pathetic humans can be that some of us will happily turn a blind eye to oppression and injustice for monetary gain.

          1. Reminds one of Cameron kissing the shoes of the Chinese boss.

      2. I’ve got nothing against Putin but that he was just standing there in the drivers green room where they should be able to decompress after the race. Asking questions like “do you like it here in Russia?” and “what do you think of this racetrack?” is just really painful to watch. It added absolutely nothing to the broadcast…

        1. My favourite was “We’re grateful for the job you do, if you can call it a job!”

          If he weren’t such a dangerous man, he deserved a slap for that.

      3. The Ukraine war, including the MH17 flight, the Transnistria, South Ossetia, the blind bombings in Syria, amongst other things… We will not repeat that every year, don’t we?

        1. I think we will have to keep repeating it @spoutnik, or at least until the race stops being on the calendar (as then it won’t be of interest to F1) or indeed Russia finds a better leadership

    3. My highlight of the race was Nico ignoring Vlad.
      And then he ruined it by turning around and having quite a chat with the man.
      Ham just shook hands with him and moved on.

      1. i do not think Hamilton was making a political statement he was probably just thinking that he was too good to bother talking to Putin

        1. Putin is a godless communist, definitely not #blessed. Lewis wanted to maintain as much distance as possible!

          1. Gus it is obvious that you do not like Putin and prefer the leaders of some western coutries who fight against the terrorism and the result is clear Iraq, Afganistan, Syria, Libya.

          2. What a rubbish. He is fan of white movement, not red.

          3. He was born in USSR and has soviet mentality, but he is nowhere near communist. Religous, fan of Denikin, Stolypin and whole White movement. And has been expressing his anti-Lenin views pretty often.

            And Lewis maintained, as you say, as much as possible distance from Rosberg. Not from Putin. There is problem in the house.

          4. sarcasm, boys!

  12. 4/10

    The boy good thing about the race was that my laptop battery died with a lap to go, so I didn’t have to watch any of the Putin cringe worthiness in the podium room.

    This truly is the worst race on the calendar, without fail.

    Still, for as long as FOM is prepared to take the money from the Russian dictator we will just have to endure it.

    1. *only.

      I really wish an edit function could be installed on this site.

    2. Maybe you should consider biting your tongue instead. Russia’s contribution to suffering abroad pales in comparison to other countries, like the one that I am sitting in right now. Also, if you want to talk about dictators, tell Hillary Clinton what you think about her when she is elected in November. Cheers, leave the politics out of F1, it’s bad enough already.

      Although I do find the parallels between an election race and professional racing to be quite ironic, especially the sponsors, and manufactured rhetoric. I am thinking Toto should run for chancellor.

      1. I don’t normally comment on the politics of the host country, and I’m not interested in a debate about the relative wrongs (imagined or otherwise) committed by the various countries on the F1 calendar.

        However it’s impossible to ignore the odious propaganda show that is shoved in our face every year by FOM at this particular race, and for as long as we are forced to endure it, I will continue to comment on it.

  13. Eh, worst of the season so far, so a 5/10. Kvyat is suddenly the new Maldonado, I felt sorry for Vettel, could’ve been a much better race if he didn’t get wacked from behind TWICE. Rosberg was peerless, but due to luck, since Hamilton probably got robbed of winning here if it wasn’t for that Qualy blip. Hamilton has to win within the next few races if he has any chances of fighting for the title.

    1. I still don’t understand. Did Kyvat really do that on purpose? There’s no way that a driver will just slam his car into the back of another one. I am sure he just didn’t react on time. The onboard showed that he hit, but probably because he couldn’t react on time.

      1. the first time he locks his right front wheel, so he can’t do much else then crash into Vettel. But the second time is just a driver error.

    2. Rosberg was peerless, but due to luck, since Hamilton probably got robbed of winning here if it wasn’t for that Qualy blip.

      I fail to see how that is a given, @arobbo? Also, the season is 17 more races, he could start winning by Monza and still claim the title…

      1. Hamilton started 10th and managed to finish 2nd having reeled in Rosberg multiple times throughout, reducingbthe deficit to 7sec. Based on that, if Hamilton had started on the front row I don’t see how Rosberg would’ve kept Ham behind him.

        1. Rosberg was not really driving now was he. He was just driving fast enough to keep the gap. Lewis wasn’t driving his best either at the end, cause of issues with his car. He was just driving fast enough to keep kimi behind him. The time difference is meaningless.

        2. Do you really think the other Mercedes is that slow ?? It’s called “controlling the pace”. Towards the end, ROS put in three CONSECUTIVE laps where he broke the fastest lap of the race.

        3. That’s a nonsense reasonning.

        4. Solely thank to safety car.

          1. And short cutting consecutive corners when going off track at the start, overtaking 5 cars in the process…

    3. Two of my best drivers – Ham and Vet, having a bad weekend. Vet’s was heart breaking while I regard Ham as today’s race winner due to the shenanigans going on at Mercedes.

  14. Michal (@michal2009b)
    1st May 2016, 14:52

    Kvyat 0/10, Hamilton 10/10, Russian GP 5/10.

    1. Kvyat torpedoing never-end-whining Vettel – 10/10
      Rosberg completely outperformed Hamilton – 10/10
      Tilkedrom and race – 5/10. Could be 10/10 if they reduce width to 10-12 m and will change second corner layout.

  15. 5/10. O.k. Race. 4 races in to the season and still nothing to watch at the front. Stroll in the park for Rosberg. Good recovery from Hamilton making sure he had space and time at the start.

    Kyvat is surely going to get the boot at the end of season, stock car racing through the first few turns.

    We need Rosberg to have issues and Hamiltons car to have no problems for this season to, I’d rather have a season like 2014 again than a repeat of last year.

  16. The start was eventful, but not really for good reasons; I do think that and the SC bunched up the field well enough (or maybe that was the 1-stop strategy of the majority) to keep the midfield clumped and fighting, though the top 5 wasn’t in doubt after the pitstop round. I gave it a 6, mainly for the midfield fights.

    I think this race wouldn’t have been great without the crash, though then we’d probably see a VET,HAM due taking more time to get to the podium. That 2nd corner here is pretty woeful.

  17. I enjoyed it. Spend a lot of the race watching onboards and I’ll catch up with the main feed later off disc. Switched off once I’d had a good grin at Lewis more or less blanking Vlad :)

  18. 4/10 Boring. Over after lap 1 when lewis wasn’t in second place. Of course that was pretty much impossible, so i can’t blame him. he did very well to stay out of the first corner mess. Rosberg was just toying with everybody, he could easily have gone 1+ sec faster in the beginning, but there was no need. Ferrari are way behind. I am glad for the Williams team, as i think they do deserve a good result.

  19. 3/10 for me. Red Bulls strategy was pathetic when they pitted under the safety car for Ricciardo. For Hamilton it looks like he’s pretty upset but a 2nd was a great drive by him…Kvyat is getting a bit sickening to watch…reminds me of Grosjean earlier in his career. Absolute brutal display from a F1 driver. I hope Vettel punches him in the nose..Putin and Rosbergs “conversation” was a bit awkward to watch. Nico was perfect again.

    1. Ha, I recall Kimi saying something about a punch in the face would teach him, (Grogeon?), a lesson.

  20. i hate this track

  21. ILuvSoundtracks (@)
    1st May 2016, 15:00

    I would give it a 7, but it would turn out to be 5. Vettel’s team radio was EXTREMELY angry than Turkey 2010.

    1. That series of bleeps was the most entertaining bit of the race.

  22. I knew from the start if Bottas failed to jump Rosberg it was going to be a extremely dull race, this track is just terrible. Current f1 cars just cannot follow through turn 3 they lose way too much time and downforce on that long corner no matter how much time they gain on other parts of the track it just all gets lost on that corner.

  23. 5. Boring race in a awful track.
    Hamilton’s issues in qualifying and Kvyat pathetic showing killed the race.
    Hamilton having to slow down during the race and still finishing comfortably ahead of Raikkonen showed Ferrari was nowhere here.
    Good efforts from Ros, Ham, Mag, Alo, Per and Gro.

  24. I think the race could have been salvaged a little bit with better directing. A lot of passes happened while the broadcast was off somewhere else and they only showed small snippets of them in replays. I remember specifically this happened where there were 3-4 short replay overtakes in a row. It really doesn’t add to the excitement.

    5 from me in total as a package.

    1. – A lot of passes happened while the broadcast was off somewhere else and they only showed small snippets of them in replays.

      Yeah. At a point during the race the midfield lit up. Then I realised the stuff had been going on a while before the race director thought it necessary to show us. Maybe he was more occupied with exerting his imperial power by looking for who to punish for ‘not heeding race director’s instructions at turn 2’. Horribly designed turn two for that matter.

    2. Yeah @tristan. The TV coverage is very poor. Why with all the complaints and billions can’t they find a director who understands a motor race?

  25. 5/10. There was some good action and overtaking after the start but it got boring after pit stops as everyone was just cruising and saving tyres. They should’ve really used ultrasofts here.

  26. This was the most entertaining Russian GP ever and I rated it 6/10….says it all!

    “Thank you Sochi!” :)

  27. A bit boring. The podium was fairly obvious, Mercedes is back to 2014 and 2015 level of domination, but the fight for the last few points was interesting, at least.
    But obviously the terrible track doesn’t help, the atmosphere is always wrong in the Russian GP, the pre podium chatter was beautifully awkward… It’s fair to say that the Russian GP is not an event that I look forward to.

  28. 5/10 The race in itself was pretty average, but the circuit just makes it seem so dull. Turn 1 is just terrible: the second apex is just completely unnecessary. The way that corner is designed will always cause issues at the start of the race, and the bollard they added will then cause more trouble in the long left-hander that follows. Beyond that, the circuit is so wide, the walls are so far away, too much run-off, corners are too similar, too many off-camber corners, pit lane is too long… the list just goes on and on. Earlier today I watched the F4 race at the Sachsenring: it makes Sochi look even more boring. This race is just the case in point that circuits massively contribute to my enjoyment of motor racing.

    I also didn’t really enjoy the political flavour at the end of the race. Politics and F1 shouldn’t meet – this Grand Prix just feels like it belongs in the 1930s.

  29. Poor race in a stupid circuit. To forget…

  30. MG421982 (@)
    1st May 2016, 15:26


    Woow, these guys are like kids. Pretty pathetic if you think HAM is not 10 anymore, but… 31 years old. I mean, look at him on the podium, not wanting to spray the champagne, not wanting to stay next to Rosberg at the photos etc etc. Just ridiculous all this “language”. Maybe he wants to send us a message that he cannot express through words, like the team is favouring Rosberg, sabotaging his car/race etc, but still kinda ridiculous for HAM to still do that kind of stuff in my opinion. Everybody knows now how good he is, he’s a triple champ, won dozens of races… why still behave like it’s 2007 all over again: the new kid on the block, with big potential indeed, lucky to have a champ-worthy car right from his debut and fighting his double-champ team mate without shame in order to prove him as a racing driver. He reminded me of Senna, and that’s one of the main reasons I wasn’t a Senna fan… but Schumacher’s.

    1. So you are rating Hamilton, not the race.

  31. First lap incidents decreased variability of interesting things happening. Combined with a forgettable circuit, I found myself reading chat more than watching coverage. Really a bad venue.

  32. Sviatoslav (@)
    1st May 2016, 15:32

    This was a usual Russian GP, a couple of fights and boring. 4 points.
    PS: four races with first lap incidents in each and every of them. It seems that racers are low-quality now.

  33. Voted 5/10.

    Frankly, the lack of actual battling in the top 5, where all passes were straightforward didn’t help. The midfield scrap near the end was entertaining, but on this track it’s hard to leave the ideal line and not lose grip (like Bottas after being passed by Hamilton or Sainz just before being passed by Button) which meant there was little adventure outside of DRS zones and maybe 2 braking zones.

    It doesn’t help the field was rather fragmented this race either. Mercedes, Ferrari and Williams seemed to each have their own pace, Alonso was so far off Massa the latter could make a free pitstop, Magnussen was not anywhere near Alonso and Grosjean couldn’t keep up with Magnussen.

    F1 needs to find a way to bring the cars closer together. Forget about DRS, more aerodynamics push to pass etc. They need to find a way to naturally equalize performance. Otherwise, if we keep having seasons like 2011, or late 2013 through 2016, where the winner is rather predictable, I fear I won’t stick around for much longer. I enjoy midfield battles, but there’s a limit to the amount of consecutive predictable wins I can handle, and that limit was reached sometime late in 2014…

    1. John Toad (@)
      1st May 2016, 18:52

      The thing that will equalize performance more than anything else is rule stability. This is not even discussed as part of the F1 strategy, just constant tinkering with rules each year and a major changes as soon as possible.
      In my opinion the rules for cars should only be changed once per decade, lets have some long-term rule stability to give each time to hit the development sweet spot. The rich teams will hit it faster but then be faced by diminishing returns, the less wealthy will be slower to get there but the gap from the front to back of the grid will diminish each season. Eventually we will end up with a grid that is covered by a second or less. Constant rule changes only play into the hands of the wealthy and penalize the poorer teams.
      With rule stability we may even see more manufacturers considering entry to F1.

  34. 4/10. Two key flaws:
    1. Ultra-soft was missing, and I don’t understand why. It was a perfect choice for this track with its notoriously smooth and non-abrasive asphalt. We might have had a decent race. Instead, teams had to stick with absolutely useless mediums. BTW, I believe the Baku Grand Prix will be a flop just like Sochi, because Pirelli did the same mistake with it.
    2. World feed director’s obsession with Putin. As a Russian, I was so ashamed when instead of racing for the final points paying positions everyone had to watch our meh-ghty leader come to track, had to watch him sit alongside Bernie, had to watch him take an impromptu interview with Kimi. It could be cheered by my fellow countrymen, but not by foreign TV viewers, and I can’t understand why FOM doesn’t realize that.
    Actually, not the worst race I’ve ever seen. It’s even not the worst Sochi GP (2014 race was just too boring, today we had some action for positions from 7 to 11 at least). But yes, it was the worst race of this year so far.

  35. Well, I enjoyed it. Incidents took some potential out as much as added to it but, eh, I always enjoy F1.

    1. Trenthamfolk (@)
      1st May 2016, 16:31


    2. Glad I see your comment @mike, because I quite enjoyed the race myself too. Sure the track is meh, Hamilton, Vettel and Rosberg not being in a race long fight took away tension for the top spot, but we did see cars racing each other close for large part of the race.
      And they were not holding back too much either with Vettel making it incredibly clear how he felt about his race ending on the radio and Rosberg giving us a nice string of fast laps at the end.

  36. 2/10. Almost painful in how boring it was. I was trying to imagine what someone who tuned into F1 for the first time would be thinking and how long they would last.

    1. To be fair, I know someone who’s first race was the 2004 Hungarian Grand Prix and he is still watching to this day. I think a boring first race can be overcome, it must be worse if something like the 2012 Brazilian GP is your first and then there’s 5 races like today’s…

  37. 4 out 4 good races at the start of the season would be too much to hope for, after first lap dramas as dull as dishwater, possibly even worse than Sochi 2014 and that’s saying something


    :D Gave it 4/10 my worst rating in my short history of rating races.

    Nico won to easy.

    Lewis Hamilton rocked from p10. But.. after first lap it was very very cushy. Unable to follow Williams in clean air. (lame), then DRS infused Pirelli overtake of Williams.

    Lewis overtake on Kimi was the move of the day… and it wasn’t that good.

    Most fun part was Vettel cursing on radio, and then talking to Horner. Real fun.

    McLaren fuel saving entire race and managed points. Good job to them. I approve.

    And finally Kvyat… Running in to Vettel twice in 200m… before a corner.. .after a corner… after a similar incident last race. Well Similar, for people involved… but this time blame is 100% on Kvyat.

    Terrible. Just Terrible. But what this race has done, has given me some new found respect for Hamilton and Alonso. Hamilton for being openly disappointed, throwing off his “chilling mood…” and Alonso for turning up the engine to get in a fast lap… for fun. Good job. Especially Hamilton I want to see him fight like that.

    1. Agree all. See my comment below on fuel saving though.

    2. Overtake of the day surely was Alonso on I believe Palmer.

      1. Oh yeah that one was good aswell, proved McHonda now has a decent enough engine for racing midfield.

        Good to see last Samurai still have a go.

  39. While t was quite a boring race, I am glad to see both mcLarens in the points. Last time it happened was last year in Hungary, where they did better though with a 5th and a 9th place. But still, scoring points will be a relief for the team.
    And their race pace was much better than their qualification pace.

    1. I was amazed by the lack of pace from the Red Bulls. I mean, being held up by the Renaults, I don’t remember seeing them struggle that much.

      1. Horner has said that both cars were damaged.

        1. Yeah, after he put both cars on mediums.

  40. Dull race, championship over by May, see you next year.

  41. Has Rosberg performed an overtake this season? Highlight of the race was the first 2kms of Lap 1, after that it was just waiting to see if Grosjean and Magnussen could keep their places. The tv director should be shot, although I suspect he’s thinking more about pleasing Bernie than keeping fans entertained. Biggest laugh of the race was Hamilton sticking two fingers up at Charlie Whiting by following instructions and going round the bollard to make up five places totally legally. Wouldn’t be surprised if Whiting doesn’t insist on a Give Way sign for next year.

    1. I liked that Hamilton move, way better than crashing on first lap, we saw a lot this year.

  42. Minus one each for (a) the local boy ramming the same car twice (and taking out one of the drivers who stood a chance of livening things up) and (b) Putin and Ecclestone appearing at the pre-podium drivers’ relaxation. So 5 for an “average” race (Tilke track, over-regulated procession and Mercedes dominance) minus two, gets a fat “three” score.

  43. A great battle for 8th and a torpedo is all I’ve seen today. 5.

  44. If ROS wins again in Barcelona, the rating will further decline.

    You know what I am trying to say here.

  45. Where will Kvyat land next year? I doubt Red Bull would keep him even if Ricciardo leaves.

  46. I kept hearing driver after driver mention fuel saving in the postrace interviews. Of course you’re going to get a procession outside of a few interesting laps if this is what’s required to finish. This stupid fuel saving is killing F1. The engines are already much more efficient than before. I like the engine technology on display here, but for god’s sake, run ’em on full fuel flow and let’s have a real, exciting sprint race. Especially at a circuit where tire deg is not a limiting issue.

  47. Just as we got rid of Maldonado we have Kvyat

  48. I’d rate the three Russian GPs being held so far in this order:
    1. 2015
    2. 2016
    3. 2014

  49. 4/10. I got so bored, I started cleaning. Plenty of dusting done, but not so much race watching.

    The Putin posturing after the race left a bad taste in the mouth. Why does this tinpot dictator get to cavort with Bernie and the drivers in the cool down room after the race, but no-one else? I was glad to see Hamilton pay him no attention at all.

    1. Hamilton wasn’t taking any notice of anyone.

      1. It was Rosberg, totally disinterested… didn’t want to answer or start a conversation despite the translator’s best efforts.

    2. Hamilton was angry he couldnt win. I like this side of him way more than lest few races when he was “cool qnd chilling”. Now he is boiling and mad. He made very sure on podium to take in how bad it feels, grab all the motivation to work extra hard to the next race and show a champion he is there.

      Now we see again Lewiz wizard of racing, not that Kardashian celebrity type.

  50. 5/10
    I was certainly not enthusiastic of this race, though I kept watching hoping for a good score in the predictions championship. The fact is that the positions I needed were consolidated after the first pit stop when Kimi overtook Bottas, and nothing ever threatened them if not Hamilton, both when he was catching Rosberg and when he appeared to be in trouble. Close racing behind did not lead to overtakes most times, with the exception of Kevin Mag. Alonso, Magnussen, Grosjean and Perez were racing in that order and somehow each stayed where he was: even Red Bull, who should be quicker, could not recover, so I don’t think this is simply a case of us being unlucky in that the field turned out to be in decreasing pace order right after the start accidents, but rather that faster cars are not enough if you are behind someone else.

  51. Vanilla……

  52. The circuit isn’t a good one, but there was intrigue in the first few laps as Hamilton made his way forwards after the first lap chaos. Things sadly fizzled out around the mid point, not helped by Hamilton’s water pressure problem that removed the possibility of him catching a well driven Rosberg, who enjoyed yet more good fortune this weekend.

  53. 7. Loads of incidents at the start and good racing throughout the field, especially when the cars got bunched up, but a few too many quiet spells even when watching the channel 4 repeat which cut out a bit.

  54. Very happy to see Lewis with another solid damage limitation drive under confidence crippling adversity. Thrilled for Romain and Haas back scoring points, yeah Kmag with a solid points scoring drive. The McLaren pair, all I can say is about time, but remember Stoffel your reserve driver with zero experience in your car scored first blood. In the oopsie dept. Pascal seemed to take a step forward then two backwards, Jolyon and Esteban! the invisible team mates. Are we witnessing the building pressure at Ferrari and Red Bull ignited by their respective CEO’s. Danil I get the feeling was a bit of a victim as well as a protagonist, the interview of Sebastian just after elimination indicated he was concerned about damage, and Sky’s Brundle opined he may have slowed. Surprised Sochi rated as high as 6. Note to Pirelli, the point of three tire compounds is to EXPAND the potential strategy variations, Red Bull proved the mediums, were the “DOH!” moment in the race. Turned off my feed as soon as I saw Putin in the cool down room.

  55. Lousy track with two nauseating sights: cars running way wide and rejoining at full speed, and all the shots of Putin and his mates instead of the closing laps.

    Good to see a driver putting fresh tyres on near the end (Massa) but I wish people would do that aggressively, not just due to health & safety. Some fine results by people who dodged the first-lap mayhem, but I’m not rating the race based on those…

    Recovering by watching the IMSA race from Laguna Seca: there’s a proper track.

  56. Still having issues to get why there was no penalty with Hamilton rejoining the race way ahead after the first corner and not giving back the positions. Was it because everybody in front crashed? To me that was a weird moment?
    Other than that good job Alonso, Magnussen, and Grosjean to get good points for their team.

    1. He had no choice, it has been given a warning in quali for not doing it

  57. Andy (@andybantam)
    1st May 2016, 21:25

    For me, this circuit just doesn’t generate good racing, despite everyone’s best efforts. The racing, in this case, further dulled by the first lap incident. After that, there only seemed to be a race for the first half of the distance, Hamilton aside, until his water pressure issue put paid to that.

    Such a shame we lost Seb so early on. He could have saved the race.

    To be fair, the none-DRS passes I saw were top drawer. I thoroughly enjoyed them. More none-DRS passes, please! Infact, maybe it’s time to a race or two without DRS, if that can be done fairly and on experimental terms. Just to see…

    And what the hell was ‘He Who Shall Not Be Named’ doing in the green room again? That was totally unnecessary and very awkward. Watching The Office doesn’t make me cringe as much as I did today.


  58. A solid 6, one team races for the win 2 teams race for 2nd and third. From 6th back are a lap down. The modern F1.

  59. It was alright until Ham mysteriously had a problem when he threatened to spoil Rosberg’s Sunday drive to the title.

    1. MG421982 (@)
      2nd May 2016, 8:54

      Yeah, right! HAM couldn’t pass BOT on-track, thank God for the pit-stops, but could pass ROS…

  60. I rate 5, it was not bad…

  61. Hamilton’s drs position change with bottas was the anticlimax of the year so far.

  62. 4 out of 10. Poor TV directors coupled with poor C4 Highlights show maketh disaster. Oh F1 what are you doing! That time difference at the end between top 6… Yawn.

  63. Forced to watch highlights of a race were the highlights all happened in the first 4 corners equals a 2 out of ten. Boredom facter was high. Also took a shower during a ch4 advert break they are that long. Losing my interest in f1 after 25 years of watching.

  64. A 5 from me. And I’m normally generous with my ratings. But this race deserves a fail grade. Rubbish track, rubbish tires, rubbish stewarding, rubbish driving by Kvyat, rubbish everything

  65. Maybe I watched a different race, ok its a Tilke drome zzzzzzz Putin was there ..aaaaarrrrrggggg but, great start plenty of action, wonderful to see Lewis chasing down the two cars in front, great mid field battles the only thing missing was a close finish to the front two. 8/10 for me. ps Mclaren rising !!!!

    1. Hehe good for you. Glad someone enjoyed it.

  66. I gave it a 5 as i consider the middle number to be average if 1 is poor and 10 outstanding. By no means was this race the worst but it was still a little dull by the time the excitement of the firstlap was done. Can’t give Alonso driver of weekend as he lucked into that position whilst chaos ensured around him, I might give it to weirlein.

  67. I gave it a 2 out of 10.

    Turn 2 really annoyed me, the drivers who cut it at the start (Hamilton, Alonso and Grosjean) gained a huge advantage which had a large impact on the final result. This is not how a sport should be.

  68. Kyvat needs to get things straight, he did the mistake in the previous race, needs to learn from that and not repeat it again, but no he goes ahead and does it again.

    Seriously I thought I was watching someone play F1 2014 codemasters game in the first two corners.

    I was aslo not happy with Horner’s reaction , he said ” Yeah it is easy to blame it on him, It was his home race he was over enthusiastic, forgive him ” or something like that. Come on he was not at home when he was at China, what happened there?

    No Driver of the weekend, worst race to date. Still waiting for a clean Ferrai vs Mercedes outcome.

    Sorry obviously frustrations let out in my comment, but felt the need to.

  69. What are we bloody doing in Russia? Sunday was one of the most boring races I’ve watched in years. I’m a die hard F1 fan and I found myself switching channels during the race to see what else was on…

  70. I gave the race a 6.

    It was an eventful first lap and there were quite a few overtakes during the race but for some reason I never felt very excited by the race. I don’t know if this was down to the fact I only saw the highlights or the fact that from the moment it was announced that Hamilton had car problems in qualifying, I knew that Rosberg was going to take another easy victory.

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