How Grand Prix Rankings are calculated

With the 2012 racing season well underway, we unveil the madness behind our scoring system and what were we thinking when trying to compare racing drivers and riders in F1, MotoGP, IndyCar, WorldSBK, GP2 and Moto2?

We love car and bike racing! And as much as we go crazy for every race, we also go nuts analysing and reviewing the championships progression. Who leads the championship? Why? Who is going up the ladder? Who is the most consistent? Most pole positions? Most wins? Most podiums?...

Many of our racing stars switched series, like when: CART champion Sebastien Bourdais switched to F1 and now back in IndyCar, American Superbike Champions Nicky Hayden and Ben Spies switched to MotoGP, GP2 champion Lewis Hamilton made his breakthrough debut in F1, MotoGP stars Max Biaggi and Carlos Checa switched to World Superbike, F1 stars Takuma Sato and Rubens Barrichello switched to Indycar, etc, etc, etc. So since globalisation enables racing drivers and riders to switch series, leaving old rivalries and creating new ones, why not creating a ranking system that stacks all of them together?

As a follow-up to our post: we release some of the Grand Prix Rankings, we now explain the details behind our scoring system. Because every championship uses a distinct scoring system and the number of races/rounds is not equal, we use percentages:

Grand Prix Rankings calculates a total score for each racing driver/rider. The score is a straight forward sum of:

Pole Position (%) = Total number of pole positions versus total number of races… very simple! For instance: F1 Lewis Hamilton got 2 pole positions (Australia, Malaysia) out of 5 races then the pole position percentage is 40.00%... mind you that for World Superbike and GP2 there 2 races per weekend, but we only count the qualifying session and we do not count the reversed grid order in GP2 Race 2 (Sprint Race).

Race Wins (%) = Total number of race wins versus total number of races… easy math, example: IndyCar driver Will Power has won 3 out of 4 races (Alabama, Long Beach, Sao Paulo) then his race win average is 75.00%.

Podiums (%) = Here we consider if the racing driver/rider has finished 1st, 2nd or 3rd. Example: Australian MotoGP rider Casey Stoner has finished in the podium in all races (Qatar, Spain, Portugal, France) then his podium percentage = 100.00%.

Top 5 (%) = Same as in podiums, but we now consider all of the Top 5 finishes. We use this variable to understand the racing driver/rider ability to finish within the top 5. Of course if this percentage equals 100.00% then it means always top 5 finishes!

Finished races (%) = How capable is the racing driver/rider to finish all races? As this values approaches or equals 100.00%, it means that most races where finished. But to the contrary, if the value approaches 0.00% then there is a big DNF issue.

Race Performance (Average %) = Let the midfield shine… race performance measures the ability to gain positions throughout the race. We calculate this value for every race, and an average value of all races. We use 100.00% as the baseline as long as they finish in the same position that they started… For every position they gain we provide 10% as extra bonus and for every position they loose we take out 10%.... So a race performance of 130% means: 3 positions were gained during the race, example: MotoGP rider Jorge Lorenzo at the French Grand Prix where he started 4th but finished 1st. We will explain more about race performance in a separate post.

Okay then! We are crunching numbers and percentages: IndyCar, MotoGP and Moto2 have completed 4 rounds and the Indy500 race this weekend. F1 has completed 5 rounds and features the 2012 Monaco Grand Prix this weekend too. The GP2 Series have completed 8 races (or 4 rounds) and they too are in Monaco this weekend. World Superbike also races this weekend at Miller Motorsports, USA and will be completing its 6th round of the 2012 season.

Let Grand Prix Rankings begin! (We are running busy… busy, but we promise that rankings will be published this weekend… Stay tuned!)

Posted on May 25, 2012

What do you think?

    • Motogp4ever wrote on May 31, 2012:
    • Fascinating! I guess you guys had put a lot of energy and thinking into this nice formula... I am wondering if pole position is that much important in terms of ranking drivers... I mean getting first spot is important but you are running on an empty track, just qualifying. I should give more importance to the race performance.
      Keep up the good work!
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    • Alonso4Ever wrote on May 31, 2012:
    • I agree with all of your stats: poles, wins, podiums, top5, finished races, but can you explain a bit more about race performance and how the average is estimated.

      For example what will be the race performance is the driver did not finished the race? does his performance equals zero? or what if the driver did not start the race? what would be his performance then?
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