Kimi Raikkonen, Lotus, Valencia, 2012

Rate the race: 2012 European Grand Prix

Debates and pollsPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

What did you think of the European Grand Prix? Share your verdict on today’s race at the Valencia street circuit.

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.

Rate the race out of ten and leave a comment below:

[poll id=”345″]

1 = ‘Terrible’, 10 = ‘Perfect’

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See the results for past seasons here:

188 comments on “Rate the race: 2012 European Grand Prix”

  1. I can’t believe I’m saying this about this circuit, but what a race! One of the best this year in my opinion. Despite the boring first half with Vettel’s dominance, the racing back behind him kept it exciting. Love it!

    1. it was absolutely Surreal!! Valencia has the reputation of being one of the most boring circuits and here we have the most exciting race of the year(coz it was totally unexpected)…i mean Vettel and grosjean had Car failures…a rarity nowadays… Alonso winning out of nowhere in front of his home fans! and the Most intruging part..Hamilton taken out by maldonado on the penultimate lap!
      What else can you ask for…oh I forget it was Schumaker on the podium for the first time since his contentious return…

      1. Jayfreese (@)
        24th June 2012, 20:56

        I watched GP2 Race 1 and today in the Formula One race it was kind of such a mess again, with the leaders (Colado in GP2, Vettel in F1) run so much faster on the opening laps and then the Safety car came and switch every outcome of the races.
        Amazing race, couldn’t be the Valencia circuit we all know as I voted 9/0, my higher note of the season( maybe due to failures and crashes)

      2. That’s what I was thinking at the beginning of the race, “Ho, hum…another parade.” I had no idea how exciting a Valencia race could be. I love Lewis/McLaren and I am NOT an Alonso/Ferrari fan, but it was a phenomenal race!

        1. You called ? Oh, I see, Anyway this race had a lot of what historically F1 races provide, a superfast but unreliable car or 2, the hand of fate cruelly striking one competitor down and lifting another high, a bit of racing and some good passes even without the tyre and DRS factors, so generally a good average GP. I feel sorry for those fans whose experience of F1 only encompasses the dreary processions of most of this century, judging by the scores awarded recently they must be the majority of the F1Fanatics on this site, let’s hope F1 only gets better.

    2. xeroxpt (@)
      24th June 2012, 23:48

      Justice+Drama= Life.

      1. xeroxpt (@)
        25th June 2012, 0:02

        The race was so good that the website crashed, that’s how good it was!

        1. Yeah, I was trying all night from the US to get on here.

    3. +1 if some one asks me what my favorite race of the year was all i will be able to answer is ” any one but Monaco”, What a season!

    4. I never thought I’d see it either. Excellent racing all round

  2. Best Race of the year by a Country Mile 10/10

    1. Sanfrantsastic to see the best driver in the World back where he belongs,back on the podium.Great to see all 3 of the old drivers,and so unexpected!.Just like the old days.
      GO SCHUMI>>> you deserved this one.44yrs old next January,let us see another 43year old do the same.
      Merc GP”get the message”,keep the car good for him and he will bring home the bacon.

  3. It was FAN TAS TIC!

    Great on track actions. Some very very polemic! also, weirdly, loads of unreability within the top teams! The result was really unexpected after qualy.

    You might be a fan of Vettel or Hamilton and be quite ****** off right now. But that’s to be expected… this was a superb race. And to think it was in Valencia… this is going to be very up tehre in the ratings!!!

    1. Big fan of Hamilton, but that did not affect (well maybe a little) my enjoyment of a phenomenal race!

      1. Same. Also enjoyed the fantastic celebration from Alonso at the end.

        That’s what F1 should be like.

        1. The only thing missing from that celebration was burnouts! :)

        2. xeroxpt (@)
          25th June 2012, 0:12

          I didnt see a thing I was jumping up and down grabing a bite after the race at 3pm, yeah Hamilton was knocked of but realisticly he was doing a superb job so, bad pit stop again… but good strategy lead them to a realistic top 5 finish until a true heart breaker, and for Vettel fans just wait till next race.

  4. Wow! A 10 for me, battles all the way through and the safety car really spiced things up, can’t believe the amount of crashes and mechanical failures… only goes to show reliability is not necessarily good for the excitement of the sport! Can’t believe THIS race took place in Valencia!!

  5. Great race!! Happy for every one on the podium especially Schumacher and räikkönen!! :D

  6. Great race when was the last time Alonso Kimi and Schumi were on the podium together ?

    1. Canada in 2006, apparently.

    2. @tmax French GP in 2005 was the first time. They’ve shared the podium 6 times, with Alonso winning all 6 of those races!

      1. RAI and MSC go back further.
        They were sharing podiums when ALO was midfield and watched the podium ceremonies along with the rest of us

      2. Schumacher won in China – 2006.

        1. Oh! you mean MSC, ALO and RAI

    3. Not a dry eye in the house! On a course noted to be “impossible to pass” .. three-wide, nose-to-tail, wheels inside wheels … Young Guns* looked good but the Ol’ Dawgs gotter done! And three Ferrari champs on the podium.

      *”Big John”, “The Shepherd”, The Scot …

  7. “El Classico”

  8. Amazing race again. Saw the GP2 races and they were amazing. Luckily the F1 race was great too.

    Alonso truly spectacular. You could see he was on a rampage from the start. Even before the safety car he was the driver of the race.

    Too bad Grosjean’s car broke down. Would have liked to see him win.

    Jus ta shame that Maldonado is driving around though. Why doesn’t that baboon get a penalty for weaving like a loon after the start? Pushing off Raikkonnen in the process. He pushed and rammed into so many cars this race. Just insane. Senna gets penalized for something that others (Button ramming into Hamilton in Canada 2011) don’t get penalized for, but Maldonado just keeps getting away with it.

    1. f1tooslownowadays
      25th June 2012, 0:12

      Maldanado has alot of money which helps with these kind of things.. (being granted a superlicense)

    2. the thing that annoys me about Maldonado is that he has proved that he is a driver capable of winning races but then he goes and does something stupid….Spa last year, Monaco this year and now this

      1. Hamilton was as culpable as Maldonado

        1. @plboff23 Hamilton did absolutely nothing wrong – Maldonado was entirely at fault:

          http://www.f1fanatic.co.uk/2012/06/25/f1-fanatic-roundup-256/comment-page-1/#comment-1030851

  9. Amazing race, one the best this year. So glad for Schumacher for this podium.

  10. A definite 10! This is entertainment & sport in its finest form.

  11. Shoot me but I give it a 10. So much drama, courtesy of the technology failing those brave men when they needed it most. Kudos for Alonso for aggressive driving and taking every single opportunity he had.

    1. I did the same and thought that I’ll be in minority. Dream podium for me! And there is one thing you have to admit- F1 would be much more fun to watch with more reliability problems. I like the track layout but didn’t think it can produce such racing as today.
      VET, HAM, GRO, MAL really made this race much more interesting. I hope to see more racing incidents like the battle of HAM and MAL this year!

  12. It was FAN TAS TIC!

    Great on track actions. Some very very polemic! also, weirdly, loads of unreability within the top teams! The result was really unexpected after qualy.

    You might be a fan of Vettel or Hamilton and be quite ****** off right now. But that’s to be expected… this was a superb race. And to think it was in Valencia… this is going to be very up tehre in the ratings!!!

    1. I’m a fan of Vettel and I’m disapointed with the DNF, but at least it wasn’t a mistake from him. The retiremements of Vettel, Grosjean and Hamilton opened up the way for Schumacher to get 3rd, so I’m still delighted :D

      1. f1tooslownowadays
        25th June 2012, 0:20

        I’m a fan of Ham, Schumacher and kimi and to some extent alonso too.

        I dislike redbull so I was delighted when Vettel retired. I really dislike Maldonado and I’m disappointed Lewis’ race was ended by him. The fact Vettel and Hamilton’s race’s were ended equals out for me. If Hamilton had been able to recover and win with Kimi and Schumacher on the podium I would have been most pleased and voted 10/10.

        Overall 9/10 for me, excellent racing today

  13. A 10!!

    And FIA got the DRS zone just right! No pass was completed before the braking point, and drivers went side-by-side into the next turn so many times..

    The retirements of VET and GRO also helped in increasing the rating…

    1. xeroxpt (@)
      25th June 2012, 0:01

      In retrospective and taking in account how quick Alonso went from lap 18 onwards, (likewise Monaco) the race could have been a 3 way battle for the victory, I too rated it a 10 but I would rated this as my all time favourite if Vet and Gro didnt retired instead of the opposite, plus we really wanted to see another driver winning a first race maybe Grosjean that had been lucky till the retirement or Raikkonen which was unfortunately stuck behind slower cars from 1st turn onwards.

    2. There was so much overtaking, DRS wasn’t needed here…

      Did anybody count how many overtaking was done?

  14. Fantastic race. Lot’s of incidents, passing, talking points, a home winner and finally one of the greatest F1 celebrations in recent years.

    1. Yeah, I was even tempted to give it a 10, especially for Valencia suddenly showing it CAN offer a good race. Hermann Tilke will feel vindicated. At this rate even Abu Dhabi might become an epic race!

    2. I did wonder if Nando was ever going to make it to the podium, he seemed in no hurry to get there !

      1. @basCB

        At this rate even Abu Dhabi might become an epic race!

        This is r-r-ridiculous!

        I find that the more I go back and read older comments, the more ironic and surprisingly accurate, crazy predictions I find! :p

  15. it’s a clear 10, so much overtaking! great race, Alonso was superb and just as beautiful was Schumacher’s charge in the last 10 or so laps!

  16. I’m voting 10/10 on a Tilke circuit? HERESY!

  17. A truly great race, one I could easily see myself telling my future children about, even though the track never seemed like producing a great race..

    It takes a lot for me to give a race 10/10, and since the first 20 or so laps looked like Vettel was running away with it, I can only realistically give this race 9/10.. But what a race!!

  18. 10 no doubt about it, a thriller to the end. Rating driver of the weekend though is gonna give some problems, there’s so many.

    1. They’re all called Fernando Alonso lol

  19. Good race, shocking effort from Maldonaldo at the finish. 7

  20. 9 for me.

    Great race! Only thing that would’ve made it better was a straight fight between Alonso, Vettel, Grosjean and Hamilton. The result was a little too artificial as well with all the mechanical failiures, but I guess that’s racing.

    Roll on Silverstone!

  21. Traverse Mark Senior (@)
    24th June 2012, 15:46

    Definitely the best Valecia GP so far. Superb racing from Alonso (my driver of the day), gutted for Hamilton though (McLaren cost him the win). An 8.5/10 for me.
    Also It must be the first time that three world champions, all of whom won their championships with the same team (Ferrari) have shared the podium.

    1. @tmsc88 and indeed anyone else who believes todays podium was composed of 3 drivers who won championships with Ferrari… Alonso won 2 world championships in 2005-06. Both of which were with Renault, He nearly won in 2010 with Ferrari, but that can’t count as ‘winning a championship’.

      However, I would like to think Alonso can win this year’s championship with Ferrari, wouldn’t that be a story? :)

      1. Traverse Mark Senior (@)
        24th June 2012, 23:19

        @keeleyobsessed
        WHOOPS! How on earth did I manage to make that mistake!?!!?!.

        1. Traverse Mark Senior (@)
          24th June 2012, 23:24

          I shall force myself to watch the Hollyoaks omnibus as punishment. :-)

  22. Maldonado deserves a big penalty.

    1. We were watching the race with 4 guys, 79 years of F1 watching experience between us, and we unanimously felt Hamilton was the one to blame for the crash…

      1. Goes to show bias can overcome experience I guess.

        1. ronald plain
          24th June 2012, 22:56

          You push, I shove, we both lose. Some people you can intimidate, others are just like you a few years ago. Another lesson Lewis has to learn. Maybe if Mclaren takes the repair and steering wheel out of his allowance he’ll smarten up. He has grown up a bit recently, but not enough…

      2. Even though Maldonado rejoined the track by crashing into another car?

      3. Then you have 79 years of ignorance among you, Maldonado was off the track, and rejoined into another car.

  23. 10/10. It had everything you would want from a grand prix.

  24. 11, not 10! I almost can’t process saying this about Valencia but, not only it delivered the best race of 2012, it probably translated into one of the best races of the past year and a half or so…maybe even more!

    As someone here said…”El Classico”!

    Writing something about all the events in this race would mean an interminable post so, from the top of my head:

    – Alonso just raced the race of a lifetime! Didn’t trust him to climb higher than 5th after quali. Such a mistake from my side. I stand shamefully corrected. If there’s anyone that fully deserves the WDC title this year, based on the performances shown so far – it’s Alonso. Brilliantly done!
    – Absolutely ecstatic for Michael. Finally a race he can be happy with.
    – Glad for Webber as well – 19th to 4th translated into keeping himself up there in the WDC battle and that’s a good thing to see.
    – On the other hand, Schumacher’s bad luck seems to have left him, split up and distributed itself to Vettel and Grosjean. Absolutely gutted for them. They would have deserved 1st and 2nd, no question about it, but…that’s the way things go sometimes. What happened to Vettel anyway? Looked like a gearbox issue, same as Grosjean’s?
    – I am now 100% sure about the fact that both the Williams drivers lack significant chunks of their brains. I think I’ve never seen a team taking so much self-inflicted damage and wasting so much potential exclusively because of its drivers. If Frank Williams wants to hold on to 6th in the WCC, those two idiots have to go! Otherwise, that place is Force India’s for the taking.
    – And good signs for Caterham again. Too bad for all the clinches with Torro Rosso. A clean race might have brought them a much needed point here.

    Oh, and McLaren HAVE to do something about those pit stops or we’ll all die laughing at some point.

    1. actually, Grosjean wasn’t gearbox, it was his alternator :(

      1. Oh, ok. Looked like a typical gearbox failure at a first glance as when he switched from 2nd to 3rd it just went into neutral. But I didn’t look / read more into it so…alternator it is. Still a shame. :)

    2. The safety car and retirements made this race interesting. Without these factors Vettel would have won in dominant style, Grosjean would have been number to pretty much unchallenged. As for third place I suspect either Alonso or Raikkonen would have taken care of that one.

      But that`s F1 for you, the unexpected happens from time to time. That`s what makes it interesting.

      Hamilton was a bit unlucky and Maldonado way to aggressive (as usual). I still feel that Hamilton could have avoided the incident as he should know that Maldonado would stuff his nose in there 10 times out of 10. Maldonado did something similar to Webber earlier on and Webber reported back that he didn`t force the issue as it was Maldonado. Hamilton should know what was going to happen, after all he`s been doing what Maldonado did for years, he, Maldonado, Grosjean and possibly Vergne are the four drivers most likely to pull a stung like that.

      When your tyres are gone you have to defend as best you can going into the corner. If this fails and the pursuer with better traction is able to get a run on you it`s better to give way. There was no way Hamilton would have been able to keep Maldonado behind him to the end anyway so just let him go and focus on the next guy and a fourth place. If he had done so he would have had a lead on Vettel and Red Bull now. I feel this was a lost opportunity for McLaren and Hamilton. Red Bull and Vettel looked menacing in this race, I suspect we will see them back to their best in the next races. It would have been great with a point cushion at this point in the championship.

      Alonso was the big winner in more ways than one in this race. His main rivals recorded DNF`s while he got 25 points. He`s now 23 point up on Hamilton and 26 points up on Vettel..

  25. I gave it a 9. Great race, though until that SC it seemed to go a bit like the better 2011 Vettel wins: exciting behind him. Sorry for him, but great for the race that he dropped out.

  26. I am not sure if this is real, but I am saying this was best race of the season. In a way, it seemed to combine old school races full of retirements with recent overtaking wave. DRS spice the things enough, but not much to have the moves completed easy. Plus this podium is just so 6 years back.

  27. 9/10 for me.

    The first half of the race was interesting but Vettel scampering off into the distance took a little bit away from it. Then the safety car came out and the race got very busy. An unusual amount of reliability probably caused by dodgy Renault alternators and some crazy driving made the second half very unpredictable and exciting.

  28. Reportedly Maldonado has got a 10 place grid penalty for the British GP.

    He blamed Hamilton for the incident in an interview.

    He is a maniac driver. A faster version of Yuji Ide

    1. If so, 10 place sounds like a lot compared to Vergne. Might be after being taking into account erratic stuff from Monaco?

    2. No, he only got a 20 second penalty, dropping him into 12th, and handing P10 to Bruno Senna @neelv27

  29. I gave it a 9/10; some of the controversy after the race spoiled it slightly

  30. 9/10.
    Great race, really.
    I have an horrible taste in my mouth. My favourite drivers are Vettel and Grosjean, and to see them end in such a way…
    Nonetheless, it was one of the best race of this year. Good DRS zone, great battles, lots of drama. The only thing an F1 fan can’t like about this race is the championship table.

    1. i love this champ. table :)

  31. I didn’t enjoy this race as much as everyone else it appears, for sure it was very good but I think that the retirements prevented the best drivers from finishing on the podium…

    1. I don’t know what do you mean by “best drivers”, but there was 10 world championships up there in the podium!

  32. 10/10 – Epic race in the end. Dissapointing for Vettel and Grosjean, but delighted for Ferrari/Alonso, and most of all, Michael Schumacher getting a podium! At last! :D

  33. I would have given it a 10 without a doubt if Grosjean’s hadn’t broken down. Even if he didn’t win. I would’ve liked to see him battle for the win. But it was an amazing race nonetheless.

  34. It seems that Hamilton should have yielded to Maldonado cos the Britons tires were gone and evitably maldonado would have passed him on the last lap , but instead of that Maldonado punished Hamilton cos of this is when side by side smarter should yield and that would have been Hamilton .

    1. Or that Maldonado should have noticed he was off the track and held up to take him on the next turn. Anyway Maldonado got a 20 second penalty.

      1. ronald plain
        24th June 2012, 23:03

        and Lewis got a two wek penalty… Smarter?

      2. ronald plain
        24th June 2012, 23:04

        and Lewis got a two week penalty… Smarter?

  35. Definitely 10/10, beautiful racing from a lot of drivers including Alonso, Grosjean & Schumacher. Unexpected twists and turns (I’m still gutted that Grosjean’s engine gave up!) Overtaking all over the place, incidents galore, good DRS zone and an emotional race winner.

  36. I was invited to the paddock club for third time and I declined, thinking it will be as tedious as in previous years… I’m hitting myself hard since 15 minutes after the race started!!

    1. Hit Yourselves one more time from me;-)

      1. LOL @palle! I think that is one to learn you a lesson then @idr, after all this is F1 version 2012!

  37. 9/10. The quality of the racing was at the highest standards, a far cry from some of the racing in GP2 this weekend.

  38. Boring race up to the safety car, NASCAR style bashing and boring after that. Pirelli tyres once more had a major influence on the result.

    1. Why the h*** do u watch F1 races then…… It was a classic given the resources from FIA are the same for everyone and every track.

    2. Did we watch the same race?

  39. Maldonado penalised 20 secs which moves himto 12th place whereas Vergne is handed 10 place grid penalty with 25k fine and Kobayashi a 5 place grid penalty for Silverstone.

    Poor call on either Maldonado or Vergne/Kamui

  40. Very good race – 8 out of 10 for me (I’m a hard marker). Much better than one would have expected from a Valencia race.

    Alonso was amazing today. Ran up through the pack while others got caught behind the slower (Schumacher, amazingly) traffic. The reason I rated it down was because of the retirements due to mechanical problems for Grosjean and Vettel. Would have preferred to see a race between them to finish it.

    Even if Vettel had won, Alonso in 2nd or 3rd would have still been driver of the day.

  41. One of my favourite races in recent times. Fantastic racing barely affected by DRS, unpredictability to the max without going over the top, controversy and crashes. And of course one of the best celebrations we’ve seen in F1 for a long time.
    Can’t believe I’m saying this about Valencia, but undoubtedly a 10/10 from me.

  42. i cant believe i was watching valencia….never thought it would give such an exciting race to watch. voted 10 because alonso drove perfectly and seeing schumacher back on podium. it was a dream come true . actually we could have seen MS on podium earlier also had he not suffered those mechanical problems with his car.
    One thing more, first trouble free race for MS and he ended race ahead of NR. This shows how much capable MS is despite his age factor . Nerbert Haug give MS a trouble free car , he will give a WDC.. nand not NR

  43. Alonso’s emotional celebration
    Raikkonen strong second place
    Shumacher’s comeback at the podium
    Overtakes, manouvers and crashes all over the pack.

    Vettel out.

    Well… it is a 10 for me.

  44. In terms of racing we saw only a few moves, most of them at the same corner. Due to technical failures and an overaggressive Maldonado, the race got spiced up. Therefore, I would say a 7 at best.

  45. sid_prasher (@)
    24th June 2012, 19:30

    What a race!!!!! 3 of my fav drivers together on the podium…all ferrari (or former ferrari) drivers …all champions!!!
    Unfortunate for Romain and Seb…they were the best out there today.
    …and Maldonado – what do i say…he just doesnt think…unfortunate for Hamilton!!!

    and more bad luck for Felippe…in the end finishing a lap down…SC just didnt go his way.

    The best race at Valencia ever.

  46. 10/10.

    Never believed I will say that on Valencia. Cars extremely close to one another, heaps of overtaking, hugely varying strategies. I’m as shocked as I ever was in my almost 20 years of watching F1. Most thanks for this should go to Pirelli, surely

  47. There were about three moments in the race, where I was about to write “Now the usual Valencia boredom sets in” to the chat. And something happened just then. For a race that lasted hour and 44 minutes it went by incredibly quickly.

    10/10

  48. a ten, would have been an eleven if hamilton had not been taken out by maldonado

  49. That race was everything that we all wanted to see, proper racing, great overtakes, heartaches and ultimate triumph. It’s taken Spain so long to have such an exciting race as good as that and probably will take a long time to reproduce one. Great stuff and if it’s a prelude to Silverstone, then I can’t wait!

    This is the F1 season of all our dreams and it’s going to be so close to call on who wins. It’s a shame that it will end sometime in the year, but it’s going to be an exciting path to Brazil!

  50. All this overtaking… …at Valencia?? :) The only thing that could have made it better was more of a challenge for the lead at the end! But I rated it a 10 because my guy won! ;)

  51. Amazing race. Had everything. Valencia easily the best race of the past few years. Cannot wait for Abu Dhabi.

  52. Never thought I’d give a 10, especially not here, but this one really had it all: great racing in the first half and then all the drama in the second half, I don’t see how it could get any better.

  53. Valencia has redeemed itself as worthy racetrack. Today the DRS zone was perfect not tot long, not to perfect. I’m sorry for Vettel but after him dropping out the carnage began. Alonso drove (arguably) the best race in his carreer so far, Schumacher and Webber dived in the pits at the right time to come out fighting like lions, great perfomance by both the Force India boys.

    1. *not to long, not to short

  54. Was Alonso using any kind of electro-magnetic pulse, sort of The Matrix technology to pull 2 cars out of the race?? :P

    I heard good luck is on the side of the ones who can grab it, and Alonso win today was 40% luck and 60% or more on his own. But let’s admit if Vettel and Grosjean would have raced till the end it would have been even more spectacular. I rated it as a 6 points race. (and yes, I saw the whole race)

    1. Sadly if Vettle had finished the race he would have had a dead boring 2011 style 40 second lead (based on his early performance) so I think his exit really added to the drama and the racing in general. As to luck – it’s usually attributed to Seve Ballesteros who said “the harder I work the luckier I get”

  55. 10. Gripping, dramatic, shocking and sometimes controversial. An absolute instant classic.

  56. The race was perfect for me. The race had drama (Vettel’s and Grosjean retirements, Hamilton’s pitstop), crashes (Vergne-Kovalainen, Maldonado-Hamilton, Kobayashi-Massa, Ricciado-Petrov), overtakes in and outside the DRS zone, an unpredictable top 10 and all of these things happened to a circuit that never produced at least a 6/10 race

  57. As much as I just want to mash the keyboard in an excitable frenzy, I’ll try keep it sensible!

    9 from me. This race had everything. A couple of surprises in qualifying set it up nicely but today it was just spectacular. Drama at the front with a couple of major retirements for very different reasons, drama at the back between Vergne and Kovalainen and some terrific overtakes that helped balance any DRS complaints. Grosjean’s move just outside the DRS zone at the beginning was brave, he stuck at it. We had Petrov briefly flirting with a point for Caterham on merit and he stuck in there, poised to take advantage of others pit-stops until Kobayashi had a go at him.

    All in all a great, close race with battles up and down the grid, loved it.

    For me today proves just how much we shouldn’t put so much emphasis on a circuit for a bad ‘show’ and just realise that much of what happens just depends on that particular day, regardless of tarmac.

  58. Keith, so far 37% have voted 9 and 41% have given this race a 10. This looks like a strong contender for the most-exciting-race-of-the-year-according-to-F1Fanatic-readers award. For all the unpredictability this season has, Valencia being rated the most exciting race of the season at the end of the year would truly be the mother and father of all surprises!

  59. themagicofspeed (@)
    24th June 2012, 20:01

    100% perfect, what an amazing race.

    Alonso proved beyond doubt today that he is the most complete, arguably most talented, best all-round driver on the grid.

    Seb Vettel is fine if he starts from pole and can lead from the front without having to race anyone, but if he’d started 11th like Alonso i’m pretty certain it wouldnt be him leading by the end.
    Hamilton drives brilliantly when things are going his way and he isnt embroiled in a moronic game of ‘pin the front wing on Massa’s Ferrari’, but the rest of the time he is just driving around ruining his tyres and being a jackass. His arrogance leads to many mistakes.
    Button – His form varies like the weather varies from sunny to rainy. Nobody really knows what hes going to do. When he is on it, he is nigh unbeatable. Probably the 2nd or 3rd talented after Alonso.
    Webber – Like Button, he is slightly inconsistent but unbeatable when it is his day to shine, as in Monaco this year.
    Raikkonen – A question mark if there ever was one. His speed and hunger are undeniable, and he would have won already in 2012 were it not for his reservedness he has been suffering with of late. If the Lotus were a better car he would probably be up there with Alonso. However, he sometimes cracks under extreme pressure.

    That is a loose analysis of the drivers as they are in 2012, at least the way i portray the front runners.

    Alonso has the speed and the consistency to win the title if he can keep up his form. This year is going to be all about consistency. If he can pick up a couple more victories and keep at the sharp end of the points, he can leave the rest to all of his rivals taking points off each other. I predict that this years WDC will go to the wire, and that there will be Alonso, Vettel, Hamilton and maybe Webber in contention.

    1. I have to disagree with you on this one.

      I agree with you about Alonso, he`s complete and will always be up there given a chance.

      I disagree with you about Seb Vettel, he is definitely the real deal. When the car was not to his liking he still managed to salvage points, and he has indeed had some bad luck this season, otherwise he would have led the championship by now. Also notice that even if he`s outqualified by Webber he`s almost always able to beat him in the race baring bad luck, and Webber is good over race distance. Vettel is bit by bit putting to rest the reservations I had. He`s obviously able to get the best out of a car that`s not great as the same time as he`s able to develop a good car into a great car. You can never count him out.

      As for Hamilton I think he`s stepped up this year, he`s impressed me. I`ve been waiting for him to grow up for years, and this year I feel we se an older, wiser and more mature Hamilton. The talent is definitely there and now he`s adding the last pieces of the puzzle. Great for him, McLaren and his fans. I really can`t see him being either to arrogant or a “jackass” this year. Give the guy some credit, you can never count him out either.

      I agree with you about Button and Webber though.

      As for Raikkonen I disagree with you. Raikkonen`s main issue is qualifying, he`s not totally up to speed there yet. That is normal as an out and out lap pushing 110 % is where you will see the signs of being away from F1 for several seasons best. He`s still lacking the last couple of tenths in qualifying, but he will find them and when he does he will be hard to beat. As for him cracking under pressure I totally disagree with you, he`s the last one to crack under pressure. Just look at yesterdays start, if he had cracked under pressure he would have tangled with Maldonado at the start, instead he chose to be cautious and play the long game. It paid off for him, otherwise he would have a DNO on lap 1. He`s there or thereabouts more often than not, and he`s still not fully up to speed after his abcense.

  60. Trenthamfolk (@)
    24th June 2012, 20:09

    It pains me… PAINS me, but Alonso was absolutely superb, in every respect today. A corking race, despite another disappointing show from Button and Hamilton being unceremoniously crashed out by Pastor… He’s starting the behave like an early Vettel…

    1. ronald plain
      24th June 2012, 23:09

      or an early Hamilton.

      1. Which early Hamilton are you talking about? The rookie in 2007 who won 4 races, had 12 podiums, 6 poles and came 2nd in the driver’s championship or maybe 2008 where he won 5 races, had 10 podiums, 7 poles and won the world championship? As for Sebastian Vettel who, incidentally I’m not a fan of, starting at his first full year in F1 in 2008, he won 1 race, had 1 pod, 1 pole and came 8th in the championship, in a TORO ROSSO. In 2009 he won 4 races, had 8 podiums, 4 poles and came second in the championship, not to mention he already has 2 World Championships under his belt. So in my opinion it doesn’t matter what ‘incidents’ these two drivers may, or may not have caused during their F1 careers comparing them in their early years to the parvenu that is Maldonado is like comparing Jedward to Coldplay…..Ridiculous!

      2. Which early Hamilton are you talking about? The rookie in 2007 who won 4 races, had 12 podiums, 6 poles and came 2nd in the driver’s championship or maybe 2008 where he won 5 races, had 10 podiums, 7 poles and won the world championship? As for Sebastian Vettel who, incidentally I’m not a fan of, starting at his first full year in F1 in 2008, he won 1 race, had 1 pod, 1 pole and came 8th in the championship, in a TORO ROSSO. In 2009 he won 4 races, had 8 podiums, 4 poles and came second in the championship, not to mention he already has 2 World Championships under his belt. So in my opinion it doesn’t matter what ‘incidents’ these two drivers may, or may not have caused during their F1 careers comparing them in their early years to the parvenu that is Maldonado is like comparing Coldplay to Jedward…..Ridiculous!

  61. 7, the first half of the race and the Maldonaldo incident ruined it for me.

  62. Perfect result for Schumi and KIMI. Gave a 9.

    It was funny to watch Schumi appearing out of sequence in the podium. He went for a winners photo session before relishing the champagne while the iceman already downed a good 120 ml.

  63. F1fanNL (@)
    24th June 2012, 21:24

    Absolutely ****** off with Vettel’s retirement. On his way to a Grand Slam and then this happens… Why oh why does that only ever happen to Vettel. And to make matters worse, Alonso wins, just like Bahrein 2010 and Korea 2010… And to make matters even worse, Hamilton crashes out,.. And to make matters even more worse… Well, I could go on and on and on.

    The only thing that delighted me was seeing Raikkonen and Schumacher on the podium. But then I remember Lotus’ poor pitstop which allowed Alonso to pass Raikkonen and I realise Raikkonen could have won it…

    I could cry…

    Still, one of the best races this season and this is just Valencia! 8 out of 10.

  64. I rated the last race with a 7 anf if I´m not mistaken there were a lots of 9. Now I give it a 9, this was race as by far more entertaining, spectacular and unpredictable. Very surprised for so much overtaking at this track (much more than Canada!) and even more for the reliability problemas that we didn´t see at least since 2010.

  65. This article needs to stay at the top for a while, very low voter turnout due to the problems with the site. Surprisingly good race. I was bracing myself for VETTEL WINS and then all hell broke loose.

    1. themagicofspeed (@)
      24th June 2012, 21:54

      I know, if one good thing has come of this its that 2012 is totally different to 2011. I swore to myself if it was another Vettel stroll to the title (yawn) id zone out of F1 until 2013.

  66. Best Valencian Grand prix ever by a factor of multiple light years.

    I was gutted to see potential, and justly deserved winner Grosjean drop out with a busted alternator though. I always preach that personal preference should not affect the someone’s vote on the quality of the race, however Í will freely admit to being guilty of exactly that in this case. I have been a ferrari fan since I started watching F1 in 1994, but I haven’t rooted for them once since Alonso joined them in 2010. Although I can’t deny that he is probably the best driver out there right now, I simply loath the man a an individual. So because he won, I gave the ace an 8, though it probably deserved more…

    On the Maldonado-Hamilton crash: we were watching the race with 4 guys, 79 years of F1 watching experience between the 4 of us, and we unanimously felt that Hamilton was to blame for the crash…

    1. Also, Schumi and Kimi on the podium, AAAWWWEEESOOOMMEE!!!

    2. I was gutted to see potential, and justly deserved winner Grosjean drop out with a busted alternator though.

      “Justly deserved 2nd-3rd place” given that Vettel had the same issue ahead of him, and Alonso passed him after the SC. But yes, Grosjean drove a fantastic race.

      1. Yes, if there were any “justly deserved winner” of this race, it was Vettel.

    3. “On the Maldonado-Hamilton crash: we were watching the race with 4 guys, 79 years of F1 watching experience between the 4 of us, and we unanimously felt that Hamilton was to blame for the crash…”

      Then all 4 of you are blind.

    4. 79 years of bias experience obviously, good job the stewards understand the rules huh?

  67. so glad that Vettel had a DNF. heres hoping for more like that for him

    1. F1fanNL (@)
      25th June 2012, 12:18

      Are you really that childish?

      1. Agreed.
        Although I am no Vettel fan, I feel the greatest of sympathies for him retiring from the race, he was next to flawless throughout Quali and the Race, and deserved to win that by a country mile.

  68. Amazing race, but bitter dissapointment thanks to an idiotic driver that shouldn’t be allowed a Super Licence…

    1. That commment can be applied to 2 drivers in the last lap. Be specific ;P @baldgye

      1. inorite?

  69. What an incredible race! Best race for several years and surely right up there in the all-time classics list. Battles throughout the race, intrigue, controversy, a feel-good result with Schumi on the podium and Alonso winning in front of his adoring fans. It had everything, and I have no problem giving it a 10!

    1. On the Hamilton-Maldonado crash, I feel it was a racing incident where both must take a share of the blame. Hamilton should have given more room, Maldonado should have been less aggressive. In their positions, would you have done differently?

      1. At first I thought it was Hamiltons fault, but according to the rules of course it is Maldonados fault. However Hamilton could quite easily have avoided it, by realising the situation and the inertia of Maldonado’s car. Epic to see Hamiltons temper burst right out, pounding the steeringwheel and throwing it in front of the car – feel sorry for him as well as Vettel and Grosjean. Alonso’s extra show for his fans and the marshalls together with his emotional reactions was great to see.

        1. No, Hamilton couldnt have avoided it.

          He took the normal racing line and thought maldonado, like all drivers do in that situation, would take the escape road. There is no way Hamilton would have knew Maldonado was going to keep his foot in and straight-line the Apex of the corner, i am ***** astounded that Maldonado thought it would be ok to rejoin the track in that manner, in that place.

  70. As a long time fan of the Valencia street circuit, I couldn’t be more happy with the race.

    This track is beautiful and offers great overtaking opportunities. Now you all know it!

    1. I fully agree. It’s my third year there and I have seen incredible GP2 races and now this. I cannot explain my feelings

  71. Incredible to think that the Urbano Valencia has produced one of 2012’s best races! Even better, a podium place for Michael Schumacher! 8/10

  72. Schumacher, wow! Looking at him in the press conferance he seemed like the fittest driver there, was not sweating at all and he’s 44′ again WOW. It took a while coming, and i dont know if he’ll win another race though i’m hoping he will, but a worthy podium to add to his illustrious life. He stood on the podium in Piquet Sr,Senna and Prost’s generation, he stood on the podium with Hill, Mika and Villeneuve, he stood on the podium in the generation of Alonso, Kimi and Massa and now he once more stood on the podium among the new kids ( some of them young enough to be his sons ) Grosjean, Vettel, Hamilton etc..

    [Reply]

  73. What an incredible race, I never thought I’d see a dry race that good!

    9/10 for me. Should have been a 10, but once again (sorry to be repetitive) DRS took something away. I want to see Schumi grappling with Hulkenberg, not powering past him on a straight.

    Apart from that, what an amazing race!

  74. Fantastic to see Schumacher and Raikönnen on the podium again. Impressive drive of Alonso. Maldonado seems to be a rough diamond or a talented bully. Sorry for Hamilton this time. I hope this doesn’t mean that Hamilton has found a new crash-mate. But surely Newey will make Vettel and Webber put his car in front in the coming races.

  75. I gave the race a 9/10, but it took me a few hours to muster the motivation to do it, and even then it wasn’t easy. ;-) Obviously the race was “cracking good fun” and all that, but I would have enjoyed it a lot more if the guy who had opened up a massive lead and was just about to start building up another one had been able to finish what he started on Saturday. Still. Good to see Kimi and Schumi on the podium! And hopefully this Renault alternator problem will be sorted out by Silverstone, where I’ll be able to watch Seb win like he should have today. In person! :-)

  76. My skin is sunburnt, my ears sore, my throat dry. What a race.

    Is there a button for “classic”

    12/10. Still floating

  77. Voted 9 – great race, so much drama, so many twists and turns. Never knew which way the result was going until the flag finally fell.

    Also, I’ve just roughly worked out that this race currently has an average rating of about 8.9 – only the 2011 Chinese and Canadian GPs have a higher score than that! However, whilst Valencia produces an epic F1 race, the English football team loses on penalties.. the balance between surprise and inevitability is restored.

  78. what really made it for me was the images of Alonso waving his flag from the car and stopping infront of the fans at the end. the raw emotion was incredible.

    very messy race though! the driving was all over the shop! 8/10. brilliant

  79. Best race this year… Fernando’s the best driver this year by far, Schuey’s second.

  80. I can’t believe so many people think this was a great race. Sure it was “exciting” but its clearly staged. This one tire manufacture rule is destroying the sport. No one knows which teams get the good sets of tires and which teams get the bad sets of tires. Only FIA and Pirelli know. In Canada, Ferrari go the bad and McLaren got the good…look how that turned out. Such an “exciting” end to that race. In Valencia, McLaren get the bad tires and Ferrari and Lotus get the good tires. This is literally all orchestrated to achieve this false entertainment.

    Bring back Michelin and Bridgestone and any other manufactures and lets get rid of this staged nonsense. I want real racing!

    1. No one knows which teams get the good sets of tires and which teams get the bad sets of tires. Only FIA and Pirelli know.

      That is a piece of complete fantasy on your part. If the tyres were inconsistent in that fashion the volume of complaints from teams and drivers would be deafening. It simply isn’t the case.

    2. Is your tinfoil hat wrapped on a bit too tightly?

  81. Chris (@tophercheese21)
    25th June 2012, 8:28

    I gave it a 7.

    I was disappointed about Hamilton DNF’ing due to Maldonado’s sudden incompetence. And Vettel and Grojsean’s mechanical failures seemingly out of the blue.

    But I was very happy to see Alonso win in front of the Spanish crowd. Especially with the amount of financial turmoil that Spain is in at the moment.

    Congratz Alonso.

  82. An action packed race full of drama at Valencia, who would have thought! 9 for me!

  83. How can 1% of votes be for 1/10? Read the notes above! “Please vote based on how entertaining and exciting you thought the race was, not on how your preferred driver or team performed.”

  84. I only voted it an 8. While it was a great an eventful race, there was no fight for 1st spot.
    Yeah there were lead changes, but forced by mechanical failures, and for me that is nowhere near as exciting as a driver slowly but steadily catching up on another over several laps. Just to build up the tension.
    Vettel’s retirement was disappointing for me, but it made for an open battle for the lead, so its a plus, but then when Grosjean looked quicker then Alonso, his car dies on him and after that Alonso didn’t really have any worries. So basically -2 points for Grosjeans DNF.

  85. Loved it, such clean and close racing in first part of the race. I think it took toll on drivers in later stages.

    That overtake on Grosjean from Alonso’s point of view, I was sure Lotus would have lost his front wing!
    I was furious with Riccardo for staying out on worn tyres and spoiling restart for Raikkonen and Hamilton. I was sure Kimi would have gotten a penalty cause of him too, but lucky he got him before yellow zone.

    If only Kimi can qualify in top four for rest of the season, he is so winning WC this year!!!

  86. Other than a couple of crashes, it was still a dull race. 6 from me.

  87. Dimitris 1395 (@)
    25th June 2012, 9:55

    Not perfect but overall a great race. Some great battles and a lot of drama after the SC appearance. If it had some more action in the first part of the race, it would have been an awesome race.

  88. Great race but only gave it a 7 as I felt there were too many incidents, seemed like a carbon copy of the 2 GP2 races, drivers who deserved to end up in the points and didn’t. I’m a Hamilton fan (amongst others) and although I don’t begrudge Alonso the win (it is racing after all) I felt so sorry for Vettel, Grosjean (my driver of the weekend) and Hamilton. Glad Schumacher got on the podium and happy for Raikkonen too but as for Button, what did he do to get in the points? I didn’t really agree with Senna’s penalty, he was driving really well and to me it was a racing incident but as for Vergne, Kobayashi and Maldonado, penalties well deserved although Maldonado’s should have been a grid drop also.

  89. I don’t normally vote on this, but this race was so good, and so unexpected I felt obliged to! I’d almost forgotten what a mechanical failure looked like, and we had two in one race! Not to mention such wheel to wheel racing. I’ve been a fan of the section Turn 17 all the way round to Turn 3 of this track for a while – good to see it actually paid off!

  90. Perfect! Regardless of the winners. All the recipies are present. Not mentioning the rain.

  91. Initially I signed it off as “Vettel wins!!” again, but ohh no!! What a fantastic race! Very very exciting!

    Kobayashi’s exciting banzai style driving seems to have gotten the better of him sadly. I wouldn’t have said Kobayashi deserved a penalty for his tangle with Senna, but Senna certainly didn’t!! He did very well to keep that one out of the barriers. His coming together with Massa was just a misjudgement on Kobayashi’s part. Unfortunate, but that’s racing.

    Very disappointed to see Grosjean forced to retire, he was running so well!

    McLaren are continuing to nicely ruin Hamilton’s races though, with a pitstop like that he may as well had been on a two stop strategy!!

    As for Maldonado, well, what can I say? He’s such a stroppy little child. There he was in the early-mid part of the race pulling the most unnecessarily aggressive moves out of anyone, yet the moment someone gives him a taste of his own medicine, he gets angry and goes into his video-game “I don’t give a crap any more” mode and starts taking people out. He had two options…slow back down, let Hamilton pass and line him up for another go, or continue turning left and overtake Hamilton illegally, let him back past and then line him up for another legitimate pass. Sadly when he’s given such lenient penalties it’s almost worth it for him to continue being a liability…

    Still! Three world-class drivers on the podium, and Schumacher has finally shown us what he can do when Mercedes give him a reliable car.

  92. Terrible circuit. Brilliant Race. 10 from me.

  93. I could hardly beleive this was the same racetrack that produced the borefests for the last few years! So much action, overtaking and twists and turns to the plot – all the better because I’m sure we were all predicted a Vettel win with the usual suspects bringing up the rear. Not sure that one good race justifies its contunued inclusion on the calendar, but at least it hasn’t been a total wasted effort.

  94. Gave it a 9. There was still a slight mid-race lull, and they needed an SC to make that race epic. But other than that, you can’t ask for anything more. And this is Valencia – WAY beyond expectations for this track.

  95. I gave a 9 but considering it was a race in Valencia maybe could have given a 10.
    This race had everything we could ask for, brilhant overtaking moves, great side by side racing, crashes, car faillures and banzai moves…………… just brilhant.

  96. All of the above and I gotta say, extra points for not getting the finger at the end of the race. Thank you safety car

  97. The worst F1 circuit in the world provided us with the best racing of the Decade. As far I remember this is the second time I rated 10 to a race after Canada last year,it was epic. This has to be my second favourite F1 race ever,it’s a victory for F1.

  98. 9/10
    Sure, it took some retirements from the lead, some crashes, drivers on old tyres holding other drivers back, and a might Alonso but in the end the race was really epic.

  99. End of race/podium anyone else think Raikkonen looked a tad knackered?
    I know it was a hot one, but even Shuey skipped up the stairs!

  100. Terrible circuit, terrible result for me, great race and what drama. 9/10

    Would’ve loved to see the ratings if the SC didn’t come out and Vettel had won.

  101. the safety car saved this race otherwise it was …average, 7 for me

  102. Umm, I gave it a 5. Better than it ever has been at Valencia but then so is stripping paint off a 50 year old door.

    It only came alive because of the questionable SC and the two significant retirements. Otherwise, Valencia.

    Very happy to see Alonso win though – thoroughly deserved. That’s what you call making your own luck…

  103. Wowzers, what a race! It was pure entertainment from start to finish for me. This is why cars should be more unreliable, as it creates so much drama. There was some great racing due to different strategies and with people like Webber and Schumacher out of place it was great to watch them come through the pack.

    A superb result with Alonso taking the win at home and you could see how much it meant to him, I’ve not seen him like that maybe ever. I’m really excited for the rest of the season and it’s great to see Alonso and Webber leading the way in the championship points, always glad of a change at the top.

    I voted 9

  104. Wow an exciting race at Valencia who would have thought it, even with the 2012 Pirelli tyres. I rated it an 8.

    The safety car and Vettel’s retirement certainly helped, if Vettel’s car hadn’t given up he would have cruised to victory like he did so many times last year, and then Grosjean also retired just as it lucked we might have a good battle for the lead.

  105. this is the only track that i can landmark a corner. every part of the track looks so similar. the only landmarks on this track is the cranes in the background and the old fish market.

    loves the train of cars going through the corners!!!!
    love how quali pace has nothing to do with the race (williams n force india doing better)

    thank you PIRELLI

    would have love to see vettel and grosian battle it out… but Silverstone is a different ball game
    love how ferrari/alonso never gave up

    lewis is da boss!! but he should have given maldonado the position (seems both were battling it out to be on the podium and both were sidelined!)

  106. fantastic race best of 2012

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