Here’s how we’d rate the Formula 1 field on Codemasters’ F1 2020.
Photo credit: F1 2020
Rating or ranking racing drivers will always be subjective, whether that be sim racers or real-world racing stars. However, we’re going to attempt to attribute more accurate ratings to the 20 F1 drivers featured in Codemasters’ F1 2020, who are all available for signing in the team-management ‘My Team’ game mode.
The original and updated rankings met criticism; we address the main concerns team-by-team and adjust each driver’s adjusted ratings.
Codemasters’ ratings: Lewis Hamilton – 93 / Valtteri Bottas – 90
OverTake’s ratings: Lewis Hamilton – 95 / Valtteri Bottas – 84
We’re kicking things off with the defending seven-time constructors’ champions Mercedes. We agree with Codemasters that Lewis Hamilton should be the highest rated driver in the game. After all, he’s just won his seventh drivers’ championship and has claimed the all-time race win record.
He has to be considered one of the greatest drivers ever. Therefore, we’ve bumped up his rating to reflect that. We’ve downgraded his teammate Valtteri Bottas, to produce a bigger deficit between the two. Hamilton won more races in the 2020 season alone than Bottas has managed in his four years at Mercedes.
Codemasters’ ratings: Sebastian Vettel – 88 / Charles Leclerc – 87
OverTake’s ratings: Sebastian Vettel – 87 / Charles Leclerc – 89
Codemasters have given four-time F1 champion Sebastian Vettel a higher rating than his younger teammate Charles Leclerc. This is perhaps a little outdated, considering Leclerc comprehensively beat Vettel in 2020, scoring almost three times the points Vettel managed.
The German is still an extremely valuable asset to any team, considering his prior experience and 53 race wins. It remains to be seen if he can re-discover that form with Aston Martin this year, but before then it’s difficult to make an argument for Vettel having a higher rating than Leclerc.
Codemasters’ ratings: Max Verstappen – 92 / Alex Albon – 75
OverTake’s ratings: Max Verstappen – 92 / Alex Albon – 76
We think Codemasters was pretty spot on with Red Bull’s driver ratings. They reflect the sizeable gulf between its 2020 driver line-up. Albon was demoted to the reserve driver role for 2021 after securing just two podiums compared to Verstappen’s 11.
Albon has the potential for much more considering he almost beat George Russell and Lando Norris to the 2018 Formula 2 title and showed big flashes of potential with Red Bull on occasion – although too infrequently.
Codemasters’ ratings: Carlos Sainz Jr. – 84 / Lando Norris – 84
OverTake’s ratings: Carlos Sainz Jr. – 85 / Lando Norris – 84
Once again McLaren is also pretty much spot on, however we’re giving Carlos Sainz Jr. the slight edge over his teammate Lando Norris. The Spaniard has more F1 experience and his impressive 2019 earned him a promotion to Ferrari for this year before the 2020 season had even started.
Codemasters’ ratings: Daniel Ricciardo – 88 / Esteban Ocon – 81
OverTake’s ratings: Daniel Ricciardo – 90 / Esteban Ocon – 80
Daniel Ricciardo has had quite the F1 career. He embarrassed four-time F1 champion Vettel in 2014 and held his own against Max Verstappen whilst at Red Bull. He’s also had the edge on his two previous highly-rated teammates Nico Hulkenberg and Esteban Ocon at Renault. We reckon he deserves a higher rating, while Ocon’s shaky 2020 leaves us struggling to give him a rating higher than 80.
Codemasters’ ratings: Pierre Gasly – 85 / Daniil Kvyat – 79
OverTake’s ratings: Pierre Gasly – 84 / Daniil Kvyat – 76
Pierre Gasly was one of the 2020 F1 season stars, with his maiden victory at Monza the clear highlight. His poor spell at Red Bull cannot be forgotten, but he’s bounced back in such style. We’ve widened the gap between Gasly and Kvyat because the Frenchman has consistently had the edge over his Russian teammate.
Kvyat is more experienced, but we’ve downgraded him so he has the same rating as Albon.
Codemasters’ ratings: Sergio Perez – 85 / Lance Stroll – 75
OverTake’s ratings: Sergio Perez – 86 / Lance Stroll – 77
We’ve slightly improved the ratings of 2020 Racing Point teammates Sergio Perez and Lance Stroll. Perez took his first win at the Sakhir Grand Prix and he’ll replace at Albon at Red Bull this year after a stellar 2020 season.
Stroll receives a lot of criticism, but he can produce some impressive results, such as his wet-weather pole position at the Nürburgring last year or his shock maiden podium with Williams at the 2017 Azerbaijan Grand Prix.
Codemasters’ ratings: Kimi Raikkonen – 84 / Antonio Giovinazzi – 71
OverTake’s ratings: Kimi Raikkonen – 80 / Antonio Giovinazzi – 74
While Kimi Raikkonen may have placed in the 90s at his peak, his stock has fallen since the days when he was battling for drivers’ championships. He can still produce some outstanding race drives, but they’re beginning to become much less frequent, which is no surprise considering he’s 41-years old.
Antonio Giovinazzi’s rating is definitely on the harsh side. He just about matched Raikkonen in 2020, although he still has the tendency to make too many mistakes.
Codemasters’ ratings: Kevin Magnussen – 78 / Romain Grosjean – 80
OverTake’s ratings: Kevin Magnussen – 81 / Romain Grosjean – 79
Kevin Magnussen is criminally underrated by many, including Codemasters. He hasn’t had the machinery to show it whilst at Haas, but don’t forget, he finished on the podium on his F1 debut for McLaren at the 2014 Australian GP – the first driver since Hamilton (in 2007) to do so.
Romain Grosjean deserves top marks for emerging from the fiery blaze in the Bahrain Grand Prix, but unfortunately his career stalled after early promise. He fought for podiums while at Lotus between 2012-13, but aside from a shock podium in 2015 at Spa, he never really came close to returning to the podium places.
Both drivers were dropped by Haas for 2021 and failed to secure a seat elsewhere, ending two F1 careers that never reached the potential they had.
Codemasters’ ratings: George Russell – 79 / Nicholas Latifi – 70
OverTake’s ratings: George Russell – 84 / Nicholas Latifi – 69
Most people will agree that a rating of 79 is not befitting of a driver who has utterly demolished the two full-time teammates he’s had during his two years in F1. George Russell shined during his one-off race for Mercedes last year, filling Hamilton’s huge shoes and beating Bottas, only to lose the race win to two separate bouts of bad luck.
It remains to be seen whether he can deliver on a full-time basis in a top team, but the evidence of his F1 career so far, suggests he’s more than capable of doing so. Nicholas Latifi is evidently the weakest driver in the field, and we’ve widened the gap between him and the second-lowest rated driver.
Do you agree with our F1 2020 driver ratings? Which would you change? Tell us on Twitter at @OverTake_gg!