Formula 1

Power Ranking the Formula 1 Teams After 2014 Canadian Grand Prix

Neil JamesFeatured ColumnistJune 9, 2014

Power Ranking the Formula 1 Teams After 2014 Canadian Grand Prix

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    Tom Pennington/Getty Images

    The 2014 Formula One Canadian Grand Prix was one of the most exciting races of recent years.

    With the two Mercedes suffering identical problems with their energy recovery systems, three men lined up as likely winners. First it was Sergio Perez, but he couldn't get by Nico Rosberg's struggling W05.

    Then Felipe Massa emerged as a contender, but he couldn't make the most of his fresher tyres.

    Finally, Daniel Ricciardo got his chanceand he seized it with both hands to win his first ever grand prix.

    There won't be a more popular win all season, and the very audible roar of the crowd presented an excellent argument in favour of quieter engines.

    In a race of high attrition, only 11 cars crossed the line. Even Max Chilton didn't make it to the end.

    Looking at reliability, race and single-lap pace, here's how the teams currently rank.

11. Caterham

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    Mark Thompson/Getty Images

    A reasonable gap now seems to have appeared between Caterham and Marussia, and there's little sign the guys in green are going to be able to close it.

    Of the cars that ran, Marcus Ericsson set the slowest qualifying time. He ended the session in the wall, having made a mistake on his final run.

    Kamui Kobayashi was the next slowest, almost a second down on the Marussias.

    Both cars retired early with mechanical issues, neither having shown great pace.

    Caterham stay in 11th.

10. Marussia

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    Mark Thompson/Getty Images

    Marussia have established themselves as the 10th-quickest team, and they are now focused on catching up with Sauber.

    Though Jules Bianchi could probably have gone a little quicker had he not suffered car problems, he and Max Chilton ended up with near-identical times, eight tenths of a second behind the sole Sauber of Adrian Sutil.

    Chilton's first-lap error put both cars out of the race on the spot, so we never got to see how they would have matched up against the midfield.

    Marussia remain 10th.

9. Sauber

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    Mathias Kniepeiss/Getty Images

    Esteban Gutierrez dumped his Sauber into the wall during third practice, and the damage to the car meant he missed qualifying.

    Adrian Sutil crept into Q2, but ended up slowest in the session and lined up 16th.

    Both Caterhams and Marussias went out early, and Sauber were comfortably the slowest team left.

    Sutil and Gutierrez had their own private race, which ended when the Mexican retired six laps from the end with an energy store (battery) issue. Sutil was 13th, around a minute away from the points.

    Sauber stay ninth.

8. Lotus

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    Mathias Kniepeiss/Getty Images

    After showing such promise back at the Spanish Grand Prix, Lotus appear to have slipped back.

    Montreal was never going to suit their car, largely because it's powered by Renault, but 14th and 17th in qualifying was surely worse than the team were expecting.

    Once the race got going, Pastor Maldonado made up places when the rest of the field pitted, but he did so while going rather slowly. He retired after 21 laps with a power unit failure.

    Romain Grosjean was going even slower, occupying a no man's land between Sauber and everyone else. A highly unusual rear-wing failure ended his race on lap 59.

    Lotus stay eighth.

7. McLaren

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    Tom Pennington/Getty Images

    After Monaco, McLaren racing director Eric Boullier spoke to Formula1.com about his team's hopes for the next race in Canada. He said:

    Canada should suit our car as wellthe track has a lot of high-speed straights, but no real high-speed corners and a lot of chicanes. So we should be in better shape in Canada than we were in Monaco.

    He was no doubt disappointed when the two McLarens qualified ninth and 12th, and doubly so when they didn't really perform in the race either.

    At half-distance, Jenson Button was 12th with Kevin Magnussen 13th. On the same strategy as most of the field, the pace just wasn't there.

    Button came alive in the final stint after an early second stop, and an opportunistic overtaking move late on put him in sixth. He inherited fourth place after Felipe Massa and Sergio Perez collided on the final lap.

    But it took a very special set of circumstances to finish that high up. If this was supposed to be a track that suited their car, McLaren are in real trouble.

    They drop one place to seventh.

6. Toro Rosso

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    Tom Pennington/Getty Images

    Though Toro Rosso tend to have reasonable straight-line speed most of the time, a stop-start, power unit-heavy circuit shouldn't be a happy place for a Renault-powered team.

    But they did OK.

    Jean-Eric Vergne qualified an impressive eighth, beating both McLarens, both Force Indias and Kimi Raikkonen's Ferrari. Daniil Kvyat had to settle for a disappointing 15th.

    Kvyat had a difficult race, falling to the back after a spin and retiring with a loss of drive on lap 57.

    Vergne couldn't find the race pace to go with his fine qualifying effort, but managed a reasonable eighth place after a number of retirements ahead of him.

    On an average track, they'll probably outpace the McLarens.

    Toro Rosso go up one spot to sixth.

5. Force India

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    Mathias Kniepeiss/Getty Images

    In Montreal, Force India once more showed their Achilles' heelqualifying.

    Overall in 2014, Nico Hulkenberg is the ninth-best qualifier. Sergio Perez is the 14th-best.

    However, their race pace is usually much better, so as they lined up in 11th (Hulkenberg) and 13th (Perez), both men felt strong points finishes were possible.

    Using one-stop strategies, Force India took advantage of their straight-line speed advantage, holding up quicker cars. From the 21st to the 68th lap, one or the other had a Red Bull less than a second behind.

    By the final third, Perez emerged as a potential race-winner as the Mercedes cars developed problems.

    But one-stopping meant he was struggling with his tyres towards the end. Unable to pass the ailing Mercedes of Nico Rosberg, Perez was passed by both Red Bulls.

    And on the final lap, a collision with Felipe Massa put him out of the race.

    Hulkenberg had similar tyre wear issues, but he held off Fernando Alonso to finish fifth.

    Force India drop one place to fifth.

4. Williams

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    Tom Pennington/Getty Images

    From the outset, Williams looked like they had the pace to challenge for a podium.

    The long straights and lack of quick corners at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve were ideally suited to the FW36. Valtteri Bottas qualified fourth with Felipe Massa fifth, their times less than half a tenth shy of third-placed Sebastian Vettel's.

    Bottas had a hugely disappointing afternoon, losing out badly in both rounds of pit stops before overheating problems forced him to slow late on. He finished seventh.

    But Massa will be the most disappointed. He could well have won, but after a poor second stop he struggled to get past the two Red Bulls and Sergio Perez's Force India.

    On the final lap he made a move to pass Perez for fourth, but the pair collided and neither scored points.

    A promising weekend in which the team demonstrated great pace, but with little to show for it.

    Williams move up one spot to fourth.

3. Ferrari

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    David J. Phillip/Associated Press

    Ferrari brought some upgrades to Montreal, but they don't appear to have been much use on a circuit which was never going to suit the F14 T.

    Fernando Alonso lined up seventh with Kimi Raikkonen 10th.

    The Spaniard lost a place at the start while Raikkonen gained one, and from there it was a fairly disappointing race for both.

    Raikkonen lost out at the first round of stops, and a spin at the hairpin dropped him well out of contention. He scored a lucky point after Massa and Perez collided on the final lap.

    Alonso didn't make any significant mistakes, but even after the retirement of three quicker cars he could only manage sixth.

    The Scuderia had the fifth-best car in Canada, but on an "average" circuit the Ferrari looks third-best.

    So that's where they stay.

2. Red Bull

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    David J. Phillip/Associated Press

    Christian Horner told BBC Sport before qualifying that getting a car on the third row in qualifying would be a good result.

    One can only imagine what Daniel Ricciardo winning his first ever race counts as.

    On raw pace he wouldn't have stood a chance, and the way the two Red Bulls struggled to pass the Force Indias highlighted their glaring lack of straight-line speed.

    But they were still the second-quickest team, even on a circuit not suited to their strengths, and when the two Mercedes faltered, Ricciardo stepped in to pick up the pieces.

    The Austrian team will be praying for a repeat performance at their home race on 22 June.

    Red Bull remain second.

1. Mercedes

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    David J. Phillip/Associated Press

    Oops.

    Mercedes' bid to become the first team to win every single race in a season fell apart in Montreal.

    Lewis Hamilton's car suffered a control electronics failure at the halfway point, which led to a loss of MGU-K power. One lap later, Nico Rosberg radioed in reporting the same issue.

    Both cars slowed dramatically, down a significant amount of power. Hamilton was forced to retire when his brakes failed, and Rosberg had to nurse his car to the end.

    He finished second, and Mercedes' 100 percent record came to an abrupt halt.

    But they're still miles ahead of everyone else, and the nature of the two failures suggest they were caused by a single, (relatively) easily fixable issue.

    Mercedes remain first.

     

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