Manipe F1 rates all 24 drivers' performances from the Chinese Grand Prix weekend at Shanghai, highlighting the good and the bad from the 3rd round of the 2012 championship.
Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull-Renault (Race: 5th, Grid: 11th):
Tried to make a two-stop strategy work compared to team-mate Webber's three, but ultimately failed as he slipped from second to fifth in the closing laps. Having qualified only 11th and dropped as low as 18th, recovering to fifth was an admirable effort, having switched to an older exhaust set-up for the weekend.
Mark Webber, Red Bull-Renault (Race: 4th, Grid: 6th):
Looked to be in trouble after pitting after only six laps, but drove strongly and looked after his tyres well to make his three-stop strategy work well. He pulled off a number of DRS-assisted overtakes, none sweeter than the one on team-mate Vettel two laps from the finish to claim his third successive fourth place finish.
Jenson Button, McLaren-Mercedes (Race: 2nd, Grid: 5th):
Was Rosberg's closest challenger for the win once Schumacher had retired, but had a slow final pitstop to blame for him dropping from victory contention altogether. Challenging the German would have been difficult regardless, but dropping back into the pack after the slow stop meant second was the best he could achieve.
Lewis Hamilton, McLaren-Mercedes (Race: 3rd, Grid: 7th):
Qualified second on Saturday but dropped to seventh on the grid due to a gearbox penalty, before three-stopping to his third podium finish in a row and the championship lead. He overtook six cars in his final stint to jump from tenth to third.
Fernando Alonso, Ferrari (Race: 9th, Grid: 9th):
Didn't have any rain to mask the dismal pace of the F2012 in China, but should still have done better than ninth on the Sunday. A crucial error in running wide while trying to overtake Maldonado on lap 43 cost him one place and three seconds, meaning he was unable to take advantage of Grosjean's identical error some laps later, costing him a potential sixth place.
Felipe Massa, Ferrari (Race: 13th, Grid: 12th):
Yet again played second fiddle to his team-mate, but finished the race an admirable five seconds adrift despite being on the sub-optimal two-stop strategy. His second stint stuck behind Paul di Resta cost him the most, although a points finish would still have been difficult given the closeness of the battle up front.
Michael Schumacher, Mercedes (Race: Ret, Grid: 2nd):
Wasn't able to match team-mate Rosberg's pace throughout the weekend, but still qualified on the front row for Sunday. His first podium finish since his return was looking likely up until he was released from his first pitstop with a loose right-front wheel nut.
Nico Rosberg, Mercedes (Race: 1st, Grid: 1st):
Did an impeccable job all weekend, from his sensational lap in qualifying to his error-free race on Sunday. He was never challenged for the lead and ultimately trounced the opposition by 20 seconds.
Kimi Räikkönen, Lotus-Renault (Race: 14th, Grid: 4th):
Purely had strategy to blame for dropping from second place in the closing stages of the race after the team admitted to having too short a second stint to make his two-stop strategy work. He drove the second half of the race on a single set of tyres, before they gave up the ghost nine laps from the finish, dropping him 12 places in a couple of laps.
Romain Grosjean, Lotus-Renault (Race: 6th, Grid: 10th):
Despite being on a similar strategy to team-mate Räikkönen, Grosjean was able to make his tyres last, thanks to them being four laps fresher. Sixth place was his first points-scoring finish in F1 and showed the potential had the team also got Räikkönen's strategy correct.
Paul di Resta, Force India-Mercedes (Race: 12th, Grid: 15th):
Simply lacked the cutting-edge pace all weekend to challenge for points, despite racing strongly on a two-stop strategy on Sunday. He could keep pace with the main pack during his second stint, and dropped back as his tyres suffered in the closing stages of the race, still managing to keep Ferrari's Felipe Massa at bay.
Nico Hülkenberg, Force India-Mercedes (Race: 15th, Grid: 16th):
Picked up damage to his front wing on the first lap due to debris, having not hit anything, but recovered to drive strongly thereafter. The ten seconds he lost at the first pitstop replacing his front wing was all that separated him from di Resta at the finish.
Kamui Kobayashi, Sauber-Ferrari (Race: 10th, Grid: 3rd):
Snuck into the points in tenth place on a three-stop strategy after being found wanted on long run pace. He got held up behind two-stoppers during his third stint, stunting any further progress into the points. He took the flag chasing down Alonso for ninth.
Sergio Pérez, Sauber-Ferrari (Race: 11th, Grid: 8th):
Opted for a two-stop strategy compared to team-mate Kobayashi's three, but again the Sauber didn't have the long run pace to convert a solid grid position into points. He emerged from his final pitstop well ahead of Kobayashi, but dropped behind in the closing stages of the race, sacrificing the single point on offer.
Daniel Ricciardo, Toro Rosso-Ferrari (Race: 17th, Grid: 17th):
Ricciardo could do little with the underperforming Toro Rosso on Sunday, as he finished where he started in 17th. He opted for a two-stop strategy but an overly long first stint put paid to his chances of points.
Jean-Éric Vergne, Toro Rosso-Ferrari (Race: 16th, Grid: 24th):
Qualified in 18th on Saturday but opted to start from the pitlane to make some changes to car set-up for the race. On a three-stop strategy, his pace in the final two stints was comparable to the midfield pack, but it was too little too late in his fight to get into the top ten.
Pastor Maldonado, Williams-Renault (Race: 8th, Grid: 13th):
Recorded his first finish of the season in eighth place after a strong drive from 13th on the grid. He spent most of the race going head-to-head with team-mate Bruno Senna but never found a way by despite having significantly fresher tyres for the final stint.
Bruno Senna, Williams-Renault (Race: 7th, Grid: 14th):
Recorded his second points finish in seventh after a stand-out drive from 14th on the grid. Despite completing almost the entire latter half of the race on a single set of tyres he continued to lap competitively right up to the finish, successfully fending off the challenge of team-mate Maldonado.
Heikki Kovalainen, Caterham-Renault (Race: 23rd, Grid: 18th):
After comfortably leading team-mate Petrov in the first stint, Kovalainen was gradually reeled in by the Russian after the pitstops, only for a problem at his right-rear wheel to effectively end his race. He rejoined the action but took the flag three laps behind.
Vitaly Petrov, Caterham-Renault (Race: 18th, Grid: 19th):
Was unable to stick with team-mate Kovalainen during the first of three stints, as his tyres dropped off badly towards the end, but closed the gap in the second stint before the Finn ran into trouble. His pace during the final stint was impressive too, as he easily pulled away from the chasing Marussias.
Pedro de la Rosa, HRT-Cosworth (Race: 21st, Grid: 22nd):
Both HRTs comfortably made it within the 107% target on Saturday, but both struggled to keep the soft tyre working over long distances on Sunday. His pace dropped off dramatically at the end of his second stint, before switching to the medium for a far more impressive final stint.
Narain Karthikeyan, HRT-Cosworth (Race: 22nd, Grid: 23rd):
Couldn't hold a candle to team-mate de la Rosa's pace in either qualifying or the race and finished almost a minute adrift of the Spaniard. He lost over 15 seconds in the closing laps however, further exacerbating the deficit.
Timo Glock, Marussia-Cosworth (Race: 19th, Grid: 20th):
Comfortably beat team-mate Pic by four tenths in qualifying, while also closing the gap to Caterham to just six tenths. That six tenths gap was replicated almost exactly during the race, as he was some 30 seconds behind Petrov on lap 51 just before his tyres gave way. He ended the race 50 seconds adrift and just four tenths clear of Pic.
Charles Pic, Marussia-Cosworth (Race: 20th, Grid: 21st):
Would likely have beaten Glock during the race had it not been for a strange decision by the team to pull him into the pitlane for a 'ghost' pitstop in the final ten laps. He was about to be lapped by a gaggle of cars, so the team gave him a self-inflicted drive-through costing him 15 seconds in the battle with Glock.