F1, the 2022 report cards: Verstappen is perfect, Leclerc is worth 8

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Does anyone remember his mistake? He is strong to the limit of perfection. If the first world title was a melee with Hamilton until the last lap, this is a deal solved shortly after the middle of the championship. A few good duels with Leclerc, then a lot of malice towards teammate Perez. He closes with 15 season victories (record) and 35 in total.

The beginning is deceiving: with two victories and a second place he presents himself as the absolute protagonist of the season. Events (including his mistakes at Imola and Castellet) held back his ambitions. He fights, fights, argues with the team every time he sees himself proposing wrong strategies. The last race is a small driving and tactical masterpiece that makes us think well for next year.

One pole position against Verstappen’s seven and two victories at fifteen. The comparison is embarrassing. Sometimes he sacrifices himself for his teammate, who doesn’t reciprocate and even says it to his face. Living together is difficult, but the stopwatch makes everyone agree: one is clearly faster and the other is number two. All time.

Sure, after so many years of super Mercedes he was convinced to participate in the banquet. Things go badly for him, but the balance is positive: he wins his first race and finishes in fourth place in the general standings with 35 points more than a certain Lewis Hamilton.

Up and down season, enhanced by the first victory and held back by mistakes and topics. Bravo in reading the race in Montecarlo, where he gets second place, and in Silverstone on the top step of the podium: he dictates the right choices to the pit wall. Relations with Charles are no longer idyllic, but the couple holds up.

For the first time since 2013 he faces the season with a car below the competition. He struggles to adapt, unlike Russell who comes from the hard life in Williams. He wins on other fronts, such as the battles for rights and inclusion. He is a character regardless of the track. His best move is the compliments to his teammate after the victory in Brazil. It is a handover of those who have won everything and can afford to choose the heir.

He loses the match with Ocon on points (score 7) and contributes to Alpine’s fourth place in the constructors’ standings. He fights with the grit of a kid and above all he has fun. Next year he will be racing in Aston Martin.

A vote for his career more than the last two seasons in Aston Martin. His last race is moving for commitment and courage. He finishes tenth despite the wrong strategy and takes home the last point of a career that lasted 299 races, 53 victories and 4 world titles with Red Bull. A pity that Ferrari did not make it through.

There was much anticipation for his second year in Formula 1 at Haas. Unfortunately, he inherited his father’s eyes and certain expressions rather than his speed DNA. He would need more time (he’s 23), but Formula 1 burns fast. He could stay around as third driver.

It is the crazy variable of every race. The last collision of his Formula 1 career occurred in Abu Dhabi 2022: he forgot to accelerate out of the corners and was rear-ended by Schumacher. He has never recovered from last year’s accident in Abu Dhabi (and neither has Hamilton for that matter). His pies had become a format. We will miss him.

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