Alex Palmer Writes...

Congratulations to two-time World Drivers Champion (WDC), Lewis Hamilton.  But I was really really impressed with the way Nico Rosberg handled the post-race interviews, interactions with the media  - but most of all, I was really impressed with the way he conducted himself during the race when he realised the car was going to let him down.  His time will come, for sure.

For mine, the drive of the day - again - had to be Daniel Ricciardo, who cemented third place in the WDC with another barnstorming drive to put the underpowered Red Bull up into 4th place after starting from pit lane.  Watch out for this kid next year, hes going to be a real threat if Red Bull can give him a (legal) car that is competative.

Well done also to Williams who have done an amazing job this year. Its so nice to see Massa in a competative car, and Bottas is definately a star of the future.  A fitting end for Lotus-Renault with a BBQd power unit as a parting gift from the team to their departing engine manufacturer.  These guys - with a Merc engine - will also be competative next year.

Shout-out to Caterham for getting one of their two cars home, and for Maldonado and Kobyashi for NOT crashing into anyone. 

But the real intrigue remains the driver market, with a number of key drivers still to announce their plans for next year.  We do know Force India are retaining their 2014 driver partnership, with two new talented Indians joining the team (perhaps as test / reserve drivers) in 2015.  Looking at Buttons donuts its hard to imagine hell be back next year, and its tough that he didnt get the chance to be properly farewelled as Mark Webber was last year.  Adam Cooper (F1 Journalist) tweeted post-race of seeing Buttons manager in discussion with Ron Dennis, then Ron calling Button over for a sit-down chat. For mine, I think well see an Alonso / Stoffel van Doorne McLaren-Honda team next year. 

In closing out this years season, I must remark on the happy families pictures of Nicole and Lewis celebrating post-race.  I have poked fun at them over the last few years, but if Lewis recent tweets are to be believed, they are happier and stronger than theyve ever been and I wish them all the very best.  I wonder - will we see the ex-PussyCat Doll with a large rock on her ring finger over the off season??

Ill keep an eye on testing (including the first running of the McLaren-Honda this week) over the winter break, and providing my contract negotiations work out better than Buttons have I will return in 2015.  All the very best for the holiday season - and perhaps consider watching some FIA Formula E over the winter??

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2017 Calendar

RaceGrand PrixRace Day
1AustraliaSunday 26 March
2ChinaSunday 9 April
3BahrainSunday 16 April
4RussiaSunday 30 April
5SpainSunday 14 May
6MonacoSunday 28 May
7CanadaSunday 11 June
8AzerbaijanSunday 25 June
9AustriaSunday 9 July
10Great BritainSunday 16 July
11HungarySunday 30 July
12BelgiumSunday 27 August
13ItalySunday 3 September
14SingaporeSunday 17 September
15MalaysiaSunday 1 October
16JapanSunday 8 October
17United StatesSunday 22 October
18MexicoSunday 29 October
19BrazilSunday 12 November
20Abu DhabiSunday 26 November

2017 Driver Leaderboard

PlaceDriverTeamPoints
1HamiltonMercedes363
2VettelFerrari317
3BottasMercedes305
4RäikkönenFerrari205
5RicciardoRed Bull200
6VerstappenRed Bull168
7PerezForce India100
8OconForce India87
9SainzToro Rosso54
10HulkenbergRenault43
11MassaWilliams43
12StrollWilliams40
13GrosjeanHaas28
14MagnussenHaas19
15AlonsoMcLaren17
16VandoorneMcLaren13
17PalmerRenault8
18KvyatToro Rosso5
19WehrleinSauber5
20ButtonMcLaren0
21EricssonSauber0
22GaslyToro Rosso0
23GiovinazziSauber0
24HartleyToro Rosso0

2017 Constructor Leaderboard

PlaceTeamPoints
1Mercedes668
2Ferrari522
3Red Bull368
4Force India187
5Williams83
6Renault57
7Toro Rosso53
8Haas47
9McLaren30
10Sauber5