Lewis Hamilton has comfortably come out on top in Motorsport.com’s Formula 1 team principals’ top 10 drivers poll for 2017, as Esteban Ocon impressed at number five.
In what has become an end-of-season tradition, all 10 F1 teams’ bosses have been asked to rank their top 10 drivers, based on on-track performances over the course of this season’s 20 races.
Points are awarded using F1’s scoring system (25-18-15-12-10-8-6-4-2-1) to generate an overall winner.
Votes are kept secret to ensure team bosses are willing to take part and can give their honest opinion of drivers up and down the grid.
Hamilton, who won nine races this season on his way to a fourth world title, collected an impressive 233 points from a possible maximum of 250 to retain top spot.
Though this is one point short of his tally last year, the number of teams on the grid this term has been reduced by one, following Manor’s departure, making this year's score even more dominant.
It is Hamilton's fourth successive victory in the poll, with Red Bull’s Max Verstappen, who secured two wins this year, 90 points adrift in second.
Hamilton’s closest rival in the championship Vettel slotted into third, two points shy of Verstappen but two places higher than last year.
The champion's Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas only came in at 10th despite scoring three victories in his first year with the German marque.
Mercedes protege Esteban Ocon is the highest new entry, coming in at number five, one place behind Daniel Ricciardo but ahead of world champions Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen.
Ocon has had an impressive season, scoring points in all but two races to finish eighth in the drivers’ standings, 13 adrift of teammate Sergio Perez.
Nico Hulkenberg is the other new entry, at number nine, with Renault teammate Carlos Sainz finishing two points ahead in joint seventh in the poll.
Perez drops out of the top 10, along with last year’s world champion Nico Rosberg, who retired at the end of 2016.
Top 10 drivers
|1||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes||233||No change|
|2||Max Verstappen||Red Bull||143||No change|
|3||Sebastian Vettel||Ferrari||141||Up two|
|4||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull||112||No change|
|5||Esteban Ocon||Force India||73||New entry|
|6||Fernando Alonso||McLaren||65||No change|
|=7||Kimi Raikkonen||Ferrari||49||No change|
|=7||Carlos Sainz||STR/Renault||49||Up two|
|9||Nico Hulkenberg||Renault||47||New entry|
|10||Valtteri Bottas||Mercedes||39||Down one|
Toto Wolff, Mercedes
Maurizio Arrivabene, Ferrari
Christian Horner, Red Bull
Vijay Mallya, Force India
Claire Williams, Williams
Cyril Abiteboul, Renault
Franz Tost, Toro Rosso
Gunther Steiner, Haas
Eric Boullier, McLaren
Fred Vasseur, Sauber