Paul di Resta, Force India, Melbourne, 2011

Rate the race: 2011 Australian Grand Prix

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What did you think of the Australian Grand Prix? Rate the race out of ten and leave a comment below:

Rate the 2011 Australian Grand Prix out of ten

  • 10 (1%)
  • 9 (5%)
  • 8 (20%)
  • 7 (39%)
  • 6 (22%)
  • 5 (7%)
  • 4 (3%)
  • 3 (1%)
  • 2 (1%)
  • 1 (1%)

Total Voters: 611

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1 = ‘Terrible’, 10 = ‘Perfect’

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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190 comments on “Rate the race: 2011 Australian Grand Prix”

  1. 6/10 Not a hugely exciting race but it was decent, lots of interesting and tense battles and the strategies brought a lot of dynamics into it. The DRS on the straight does actually bring in a fair bit of excitement and I’m looking forward to seeing more of it in future races.

    The most interesting thing about this race was the results: Petrov on the podium (WOAH), Perez on one stop beating Kobayashi in the Saubers and Buemi completing the top 10. Brilliant! And so wonderful to see Petrov beat Alonso again!

    If Kubica wasn’t at home in bandages he would’ve been a serious championship contender this year.

    One question though – did Ferrari let Alonso past Massa during that thing where Button went off the track? One minute it was Massa -Button-Alonso, then it was Button-Alonso-Massa.

    1. Yes they did they reasoned Button would have to let them both through, in the end Button got his penalty so it all worked out for Alonso. Team orders already, eh.

        1. Another example of Alonso’s rubbish overtaking skills. Ferrari are fine tacticians (and sometimes fine cheats) but whilst Massa is prepared to fall on his sword for the Prancing Ponies, Alonso will continue to get results he doesn’t deserve.

          1. What rubbish overtaking skills? He passed Kobayashi round the outside of Turn 11, just like Hamilton did the year before, nailed Rosberg off camera and then passed Massa.

            I could also mention plenty of other occasions where Alonso has proven himself a more than adequate overtaker, but something tells me you wouldn’t bother listening…

          2. Though I think he has fine overtaking skills, I agree with your post whole heartedly Danny.

          3. The move on Massa was a genuine move. I don’t think Massa was told to move out of the way, he just put up a poor fight.

            Anyway, I think Massa was shockingly bad today. If he hadn’t passed Buemi today he would have found himself by 3 Ferrari engined mid-fielders.

          4. Massa had a terrible race. If Alonso has such rubbish overtaking skills then how did he win 2 World Championships? He had several overtakes today. Why is it so hard for some people to respect the drivers; no need to like them but to claim a 2 time world champion F1 driver has “rubbish overtaking skills” is asinine. If your a Massa fan face the fact he raced like crap today and move on

          5. Rubbish overtaking skills!?!

            Are we talking about the same guy that took Schumacher around the outside of 130R?

          6. @Tommy : I don’t know, Massa was pretty damn good at defending against Button at least

          7. and then passed Massa

            You say that like it means something when Alonso does it. You have me confused.

          8. I don’t see any cheating here. Clever thinking by Ferrari. :)

          9. I agree, alonso started the year, equal to 2010, taking advantage of others. Massa was much better

      1. Yep. First race and Massa’s the dog already. Pity him :(

        1. Massa is simply a second driver , as Barrichello , Irvine and others in the past !

        2. In retrospect, it sucked. Because:

          -drivers being disqualified and more to come
          -KERS is pointless
          -DRS is pointless, what you think helped overtaking was actually drafting
          -Pirelli degradation was overstated (1 stop for Perez)
          -FIA continues to be biased

          1. 1) They broke the rules. It sucks, and I’m a Sauber fan, but can’t do anything about it

            2)KERS, in its current form, is pointless and really only helps when coupled with the DRS. When it is made more powerful it will make a bigger difference

            3)DRS aided the draft giving drivers a better draft. It wasn’t an automatic overtake, thank god, and did its job. Perhaps an added 50 meters or so would be ideal

            4)When 1 driver makes 1 stop it is as advertised. Don’t take anything more away from Perez; what he did was special.

            5)If that is about Button’s pass on Massa that was a good call. Button made a stupid move by completely cutting the corner and not giving the position back. Sure, he may have been ahead by a bit, but Massa had the better line. Either way, it was obvious a penalty was going to be called so Button could have saved himself a lot of trouble by handing the position back right away. Seemed he was growing impatient behind Massa.

      2. I dont think they did – Alonso and Massa looked like they were fighting each other, not letting each other though…I dont think there would have been enough time between Button cutting the corner to pass and Alonso getting past Massa to have discussed it fully.

        1. Massa slowed down significantly in the next 3 corners before they reached the pit entrance, and Alonso passed Massa in some weird positions – it does seem like Massa has let Alonso pass deliberately

          1. It looked to me as if Massa defended up the inside in to turn 13, Alonso switched back up the inside and nailed him in to the next corner. What’s so strange about that? Massa had no pace anyway…

            There may have been an element of not fighting as hard because it’s your team mate, but actively letting him through? I really don’t think so.

          2. Ferrari have proven, repeatedly, since the end of the Schumacher era, that while they won’t hesitaite to use team orders late in the season, they wait untill they’ve got a clear leader within their team, for the year.

            Raikkonen 07
            Massa 08
            Alonso 10

            So at this stage of the season, you can assume that it’s genuine fighting. Just as Massa keeping Alonso behind last season at Aus, wasn’t exactly team orders.

        2. It common snese to Massa I guess. See a Ferrari in your rear-view mirror and immediately let him thorough. That sort of thing.

      3. Im sure that if someone from ferrari told massa to let alonso through we would have heard a radio transmission just like at Germany last year.
        Because i haven’t, I’m inclined to think that Alonso had the run on massa who didnt put up a fight

      4. Thats rubbish Icthyes. FOM would have put that on air for sure if it was true.

    2. To me it looked like Massa slowed enought to let him by and get past Button there. Would be suprised if that was not planned by Ferrari to get Alonso or both past Button.

      1. Yeap, a clever switch by Ferrari as Button had to then let both through.
        I guess Massa knows he place this year, not even quarter of the 1st race gone and has to let Alonso through… how very sad (and sad he was soooo slow)

    3. That’s when I’ve lost all respect to Ferrari – what happened last year in Hockenheim was unsporty, but this is just pure lack of sportsmanship

      1. I though it was brilliant strategy! Button really only has himself to blame, if he was going to relinquish his place he would have done so immediately rather than scampering off

        1. It wasn’t that simple though. He had TWO Ferraris right behind him very closely. If he’d let one go do you really think the other would say ‘okay, I’ll stay where I was so it’s back to normal’? No.

          1. Ah no, but as soon as he cut the kerb he pulled away from Massa. If he had had any intention of returning his place he would have slowed down immediately (see Hamilton in Spa 2008 for example), and then by the time it was clear he’d cut the corner it was too late for him.

          2. Yep.. it wasn’t that simple.. but then again why did he have cut a corner in the 1st place? Its not like he was squeezed off track. I honestly think it was just a brain fade moment from Button or maybe someone forgot to tell Button that Bernie’s shortcut WASN’T implemented.

        2. exactly my thoughts.
          It was an illegal overtake, all he needed to do was give the position back and it never would have happened.

          1. but he couldn’t without losing to place as Alonso was behind him by the time he could let Massa back past

          2. Button tried to give his position back, but Massa was even slower…

          3. losing 2 places is better then getting a drive through is it not?

          4. massa was significantly slower in the subsequent 2 corners, with alonso side-by-side with him

      2. I disliked it in one way, but I also thought it was really cleverly done by Ferrari as it seemed clear Button would have to let Massa past – Ferrari learned from last years mistakes doing that; they made sure Button had to at least let them both through; then they forced it into a drive through, got Alonso on softs to make sure he was ahead of Button afterwards. Good thinking really.

        I think it is just as last year: just let the guy take his place again as soon as possible, that’s the best way if you went off track during overtaking someone.

        1. make that “soon as possible” -> immediately

          1. Yes. Like Hamilton did in Spa 08?? or whenever it was. Just don’t take the position back straight after again. :P

    4. The race wasn’t so exciting as the commentators made it seem, because every time a car was on the start/finish straight they were shouting around telling the driver would have used the DRS, but in the end only a few did so.

    5. One question though – did Ferrari let Alonso past Massa during that thing where Button went off the track? One minute it was Massa -Button-Alonso, then it was Button-Alonso-Massa.

      No. Alonso fought with Massa for a few corners and eventually passed him.

    6. lolol it took me 3 seconds while watching to figure it was instant team orders – Alonso was staying well behind the the two fighting for a long long time – he had the pace in him all along! 2ndly massa had a clean exit out of 12, nothing to hold him down / make him drop back to alonso – but alonso was passed him by 14 – instant team order IMO “let alonso thru to have both our cars passed button” the probable message passed out to him – button gets away, pit them both – button gets drive thru.

      nice, cheap yet in-the-rules tactic. I guess this is exactly why we love ferrari without realising it – same thing with Schumacher over all those years

      1. I think that if you go by FM’s outrage last year, his utter insistance that he is ‘no Reubens’ at Ferrari, insisting he was not going to play second fiddle to FA, then I think that if there was actually a team order yesterday FM would be making sure everybody knew it…instead, no such comment from FM…

        I think all that went on is that FM’s tires were hurting, FA was faster at the time, end of story…my proof? Only that if it was otherwise, FM would have let us know by now…especially when everybody will be looking for exactly that very thing, especially after how last year unfolded…

        Let’s face the facts…there’s no way Ferrari is behaving like they did in the MS era…FM does have a fair shot this year, just as he did last year…the only thing he is suffering from is that he has one of the best as a teammate…he said enough last year to make it clear that he was no Reubens, there is no contract for him to be subservient from race 1 of the season, and that he would rather not race for the team if that was the direction they wanted to go…

        Don’t get me wrong…I despise the FIA and Ferrari for their massive multi-season skewing toward MS during that chapter, but I also agree with Scribe above that since MS, Ferrari has treated their drivers equally…

        Again…if they weren’t doing that now, FM would tell us…

        1. I also agree that had there been a team order over the radio the FIA would have made sure we heard it, just like they did last year with Ferrari’s nudge nudge wink wink comment to FM to say FA is coming up on you and is faster, hint hint…

          This year team orders are legal, and yet there is no evidence that that is what went on at Ferrari yesterday.

  2. 7. It was pretty interesting. Great to see Petrov hold onto 3rd and we can’t really be disappointed by the DRS, I wasn’t too optimistic about it in the first place.

    1. Not the best track, or position for it I don’t think. There’ll be better oppourtunities.

      1. I finally got around to voting and, like DryYoshi, gave it a 7.

  3. 8/10. Not quite as good as 09 or 05 but strategy variation, couple of penalties, overtaking and the young rookies showing some good form. Great start for the season

    1. And a very exiting few laps of Massa defending from Button right at the start.

      But on the downside Massa did slow down immediately to let Alonso past right after Button got off track.

      1. I doubt Massa let Alonso through. They looked like they were fighting pretty hard against each other just before that and there’s no way Ferrari would have had time for team orders as it was all over so quickly plus Ferrari let their drivers fight for the title early in the season and when one establishes a clear challenge then they back that driver and this was only the first race of the season.

        1. I agree, I think Massa got a poor drive out of the corner after fighting with Button and Alonso capitalised. Alonso then pulled away from Massa fairly quickly too so was obviously faster.

        2. Absolutely, it was just Alonso being really sharp. Massa carried poor speed because of Button and there’s nothing he could not.
          It’s no Hockenheim.

        3. It looked like Massa wasn’t prepared to just let Alonso by, but in the end he was close to pit anyway, so no point in holding them both up, I suppose.

        4. Not sure about letting through, but Massa would have been told not to bother too much as they were getting him in to pit soon anyway.

          Why would the team want him to defend position if he was clearly slower than Alonso there.

          1. massa was just dealing with the button situation and had no time to recompose himself, he didnt let him thru.. plus alonso was very good

    2. I voted 9 out of ten, lots of overtaking was good, Alonso’s drive through the field was super mega, some welcome strategy variation shaking things up and a few surprises in the points. Also thought the DRS worked well, yes a bit artificial but I thought the balance was just about right.

      The race lacked a battle at the front though, but still on the whole I absolutely loved the race, every race should be in Melbourne.

      1. I must admit it was really nice to see Alonso fight it out on track. Shame he had to fight his own car a that much though.

        But I suspect that in Malaysia they will be a lot closer to the pace. At least until it rains.

  4. 8 from me. needed a fight for 1st

    1. we almost did! but Vettel pitted as soon as Hamilton came up behind them.

  5. 8/10 Not a classic but a good opener, nice action, tyre rules definitely get a thumbs-up from me, major fail on the DRS Zone location though. Hopefully no penalty for Hamilton, it was clearly damage not illegally low ride-height.

    1. i think if DRS have been placed before turn 11 would created better racing

  6. 9/10
    Would have been 10/10 if McLaren won.

    1. F1 Fanatic holds polls on each race to find out which fans thought were the best and worst races during a season. Please vote based on how entertaining and exciting you thought the race was, not on how your preferred driver or team performed.

      1. Impossible.

      2. Mark Hitchcock
        27th March 2011, 10:54

        Some people will find a race more exciting if their chosen team or driver is holding onto a lead throughout. There’s no getting past that.

        It’s not like Floptickle was going to vote 10 if Mclaren won but instead voted 1. He voted 9 because the only reason it wasn’t perfect was because his team didn’t win. Seems pretty fair to me!

    2. Seriously, don’t vote if you’re going to vote like that. Its supposed to be a way of rating a race’s entertainment value to a neutral not about whether or not your favourite team/driver won

      1. Weaaal, yes and no Ads21. It’s about whether you enjoyed it or not, and what you thought of the race. If your a team fanatic then obviously your team winning increases your enjoyment.

        I gave the race a 7. I’d probably have kept it at 7 if McLaren had won, unless there was a battle for 1st, but it’s impossible to stay neutral unless you are neutral to everyone’s fortunes. An that’s just not the case for a lot of sports fans.

        1. Yer but I try to never voted on the basis of how I felt personally about the race, I mean I gave Brazil ’08 and Spa ’10 10/10 and 9/10 despite the fact I was really unhappy at the outcomes of the races.

    3. This is actually fine. I’d just word it differently to avoid all the criticism you’re getting – like ‘for me personally I would have enjoyed it more so it would have been a 10.’ Which is fair enough.

  7. Will give it a ten when LH gets a dsq

    1. I hope they dont but only because of my predictions.

  8. 7/10

    Not a crazy race but rarely a moment where nothing was happening. A few passes (even one from Vettel!) and two great performances from Petrov and Perez.

    1. Perfect, i share the same views.
      I’ll add great television footage from the helicopter.

    2. fullthrottle
      27th March 2011, 15:17

      An illegal one, he went off track.

      1. He kept two wheels on the track, so it was legal, and counts as him being on the track.

  9. 2/10: a very confusing “race” of pitstops and videogames-style gimmicks. I just hate it.

    1. What? It had a pretty regular number of pit stops and the gimmicks didn’t work that well, actually.

      I rated it 6/10. There were some surprises and a couple of exciting moments, but it was a fairly boring race, as far as Australian GP’s go. Overtaking was still minimal, the effects of DRS almost negligible and KERS used primarily for defence. It does not bode well for the rest of the season.

  10. I think 7/10 is fair. It had it’s moments, and some popular and surprising results.

    1. Yeah, I agree and voted simular. Not bad for an opener, not a classic that’ll be remembered for long, some good drives, some good action, podium farly nailed on from the first lap and the result never in doubt.

  11. Please vote based on how entertaining and exciting you thought the race was, not on how your preferred driver or team performed.

    i think a few people forgot to read that bit..

    im thinking 8, would do 7.5 if i could :P

  12. wasted for hamilton :(

  13. I’ve given it an 8/10. First race of the year. Nice battle between Button and several cars. Exiting running between others as well.

    Rubens had a bit of a mind drain, I bet he nailed Rosbergs exhausts there.

    1. exactly my thoughts; I hope at some point in the season we will see someone battle with Vettel for the lead, but it was pretty entertaining, and I’m happy that the DRS doesn’t make overtaking too easy, but does seem to help a bit. Loved Perez being able to only do two stints, seeing Petrov keeping it cool. At about third way through, I would have liked to see more of what happened in the midfield, but that is a problem with the camera’s not the race itself.

      1. And the FOM footage was pretty good with capturing the moments, suprisingly.

  14. A little boring in the front spots, but Alonso, Massa and Button were fun to watch… I think that ‘8’ is well deserved for this race.

  15. HORNER confirms both redbulls had no kers…he says they removed it from the cars on friday..

  16. A solid 7. Not a cracker but plenty of interesting elements to the race!

  17. I thought six out of ten as there were a couple of points where I even considered turning off.
    But, Petrov and Perez really impressed. Great start to their seasons.

  18. 6/10. A very good base for the year, but nothing above the average really. Obviously 8/10 just by virtue of being the first race, but I have to judge it fairly with other races.

  19. 6/10 The winner was sooooo predictable… Webber seems like he’s driving a totally different car. Ferrari continued where they left from Abu Dhabi, again messing up the strategy. Hamilton as usual magnificent pushing the car’s potential beyond it’s limits. Button was his mediocre-self again. Massa – a total failure, useless, loser etc. I don’t think Ferrari will have enough patience and wait till the seasons’s end to kick him out. Next year I bet we’ll see Perez along with Alonso at Ferrari.

    1. I’ll tell you something…Redbull are faster than they look. They have loads of speed to spare and would call on it whenever needed to always stay in front. Webbers car is being deliberately slowed down by the team so that we dont start screaming “Redbull Lock-out” from the word go this year. Mark my words

    2. What do you mean that Ferrari messed the strategy? I think it was pretty brilliant. Remember they got Webber in that way…

      1. They “got Webber” because Red Bull messed up Webber’s pitstop and because Webber didn’t have KERS to get past Alonso again.

      2. Massa slipped behind both Saubers (and Buemi) with the late pitstop, instead of simply grappling with Perez. Which would have been bad if not for the Saubers being DQed.

  20. I was very disappointed that FOM clearly withheld footage of Alonso overtaking at the start, and the 10th/11th/12th battle and are going to use it in their end of season DVD to the detriment of their live broadcasts.

    1. Heh, I also missed seeing those, I think we can only hope they at least do put them on the DVD.

      1. Noooo!!!!!

        If we buy the DVD it upholds FOM’s policy of denying the best bits on the day!

      2. Just download it illegally.
        FOM already has enough of our money!

  21. An OK race without really being stand-out. DRS has failed its first test – it would have been disappointing to see Button able to just drive past Massa easily with DRS, but it didn’t happen, presumably the Ferrari KERS is currently better than the McLaren KERS. As such DRS looks like it might be the white elephant we feared.

    That having been said, it’s not a long straight and the cars need to be going in a straight line before it’s deployed, more so than with KERS.

  22. Button is saying Ferrari pitted Massa so he couldn’t give the position back. To be fair he had a whole lap, but it would have interfered with his strategy to pit and let him by.

    1. I think he was avoiding saying what he really thought which was “Massa let Alonso through so I would have had to yield two places”

      1. Button totally messed up here. He can complain as much as we wants.

      2. They did both things.

        Get Alonso there to profit in cas Button let Massa back past and then pitting Massa to make sure Button would get penalized. Massa was a lot slower there though, so it would make sense to let Alonso by anyway.

        1. Alonso pitted first, so Button could have understood that Massa was about to pit too. He still had a full lap to give the position back.

          He just was (wrongly) convinced that he was ahead before the corner.

  23. 7/10, not a stunning race but I enjoyed it in terms of results with Vettel on top and Petrov with his first podium! I regret not putting him in my top 5 and I’m glad I decided against putting Rosberg in!

  24. 8. Button/Massa was fun. Petrov and Perez were surprises. HAM was closer to VET than expected but never really threatened consistently. Tire strategies varied nicely. DRS and KERS provided more even variety. HD coverage made everything a bit better. Mercedes really suffered and Ferrari underperformed compared with pre-season expectations so that added to the drama. Obviously if Bernie had added some fake rain it would be a 10. Not.

  25. No battle for win is major minus.

    1. The first pitstop period was sort of a battle for P1. Hamilton tried to go longer to pass Vettel, but it didn’t really work out since these tyres just slow you down the longer you drive on them.