POWER RANKINGS: Who emerged from France as King of Le Castellet?

Max Verstappen won the French Grand Prix after Charles Leclerc crashed after the Dutchman extended his championship lead with a comfortable performance at Circuit Paul Ricard. But who got the highest score from the judges this week?

How it works

  • Our panel of five judges each rider after each Grand Prix, scoring them out of 10 based on their performance over the weekend – taking the machines out of the equation

  • Our experts’ scores are then averaged to create a race score – and these scores are then added together across the season on our overall performance rankings (bottom of page).


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Rider of the Day Sainz took the highest score in this week’s Power Rankings. The Ferrari driver, who was penalized for adopting new engine components, helped his team-mate to pole position with a handy slipstream and worked his way up from P19 to P3. After an unfortunate five-second penalty for an unsafe clearance, he was able to finish fifth with the fastest lap for crucial points.

TREMAYNE: Why Ferrari is at a fork in the road after the frustrations at the French Grand Prix


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Hamilton qualified fourth to share the second row with Red Bull’s Sergio Perez and quickly proved his pace was superior to the RB18 driver. The seven-time champion pulled away from Perez in his 300th race and took advantage of Charles Leclerc’s retirement to finish second for a fourth consecutive podium – in a weekend when the W13 didn’t seem to be at its best.

READ MORE: Hamilton looks back on ‘incredible journey’ to 300 races after Mercedes enjoyed ‘great day’ with French GP result


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Verstappen qualified second after the Scuderia employed their cunning slipstream strategy on Saturday and kept pace with Leclerc in the early stages of the race until he stayed right on the rear wing of his Ferrari the End of race crash at Turn 11. From there, Verstappen drove to victory and stretched his legs in the standings.

READ MORE: ‘Exceeded my wildest expectations’ – Horner praises Red Bull for dominating the first half of 2022


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Russell was passed by McLaren’s Lando Norris by just under a tenth of a second, the Mercedes driver quickly overtaking the orange car on race day. Perez proved a more stubborn obstacle, Russell nearly picked the car up late at Turn 8 before taking the Mexican’s final podium spot in the Virtual Safety Car period. From there, he stopped by under a second to secure the Silver Arrows’ first double podium of the season.

READ MORE: Perez felt ‘cheated’ by Virtual Safety Car ending as Russell reveled in ‘satisfying’ overtaking at French GP


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Alonso led the midfield for P6 in the race on Sunday. Despite qualifying seventh behind Russell and Norris, the two-time champion used every facet of his experience (beating Kimi Raikkonen’s lap record en route) to hold off the McLarens and help teammate Esteban Ocon finish eighth – and help Alpine beat them to overtake payapa rival for P4 in Constructors Championship.

READ MORE: Record-breaker Alonso says he played French GP ‘like a chess game’ en route to P6


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Norris impressed all weekend, sharing the Mercedes in qualifying. But on Sunday the Brit couldn’t match Alonso’s pace and tactics, Norris finishing P7 for McLaren. That seventh place meant Norris led a speedy Ocon and teammate Daniel Ricciardo in P9, helping McLaren salvage solid points in their hunt for P4.

READ MORE: Norris takes ‘a lot of positives’ from France despite Alpine’s lead over McLaren in the Championship


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Aston Martin’s Stroll is next in our standings, the Canadian dismissing a poor showing in qualifying that saw him start from P15. Still, he shot to P11 at the start and passed teammate Sebastian Vettel – who was busy dodging the chaos on Lap 1 – to stay in front of the four-time champion. On the final lap of the race, Stroll and Vettel went wheel to wheel to chase the last point, a battle the number 18 driver won by keeping his elbows out in the final corner.

READ MORE: “I almost ran into him,” says Vettel after a tense argument with Stroll at the end of the race


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Ocon started Sunday in P10 and overtook Ricciardo in the race to P8, with the Frenchman catching up with a helping hand from teammate Alonso. Ocon didn’t get much further as Norris had the pace on his Alpine, but P8 was a good job for the home racer.

READ MORE: 6 winners and 5 losers of the French Grand Prix – Which drivers shone on a sunny Circuit Paul Ricard?


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Albon managed to finish 13th on the grid for the race, ahead of home racer Pierre Gasly and Lance Stroll’s Aston Martin, and while he hovered outside the top 10 for most of the encounter, it quickly became clear that he was would not be able to compete for points. However, the Williams driver stayed clean and ended up 13th behind AlphaTauri driver Gasly.

READ MORE: Albon ‘frustrated’ to leave France without points – but positive, Latifi says his season is now ‘back on track’.


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Vettel entered the top 10 in the Power rankings after this week’s French GP after the Aston Martin driver lost early after having to slow down due to a collision between Ocon and Yuki Tsunoda. Vettel turned up the wick late and caught Stroll at a speed of knots before making his move on the final corner of the final lap of the race. Stroll closed the door, Vettel avoided contact, but the Canadian got the last point.

TECH TUESDAY: Analyzing Red Bull and Ferrari’s clever floor intake arrangements for Paul Ricard

Miss

Kevin Magnussen missed out on the top 10 in France after starting from the back of the grid with engine penalties before retiring on lap 37 thanks to contact with Nicholas Latifi.

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