Top ten passes of 2012: Vote for the best

2012 F1 season review

F1 Fanatic readers nominated 109 different overtaking moves for best pass of the year. Here’s the top ten – now it’s time to vote for the best.

Vettel on Rosberg, Australian Grand Prix

Having dominated qualifying in 2011 it was a surprise to see reigning world champion Sebastian Vettel only sixth on the grid for the first race in Melbourne.

He was beaten off the line by Nico Rosberg, but he soon set that right with this daring around-the-outside pass. This set him up to claim a useful second place on the first race day of the season.

Kobayashi on Button, Spanish Grand Prix

Overtaking at the Circuit de Catalunya is notoriously difficult, which perhaps explains why two passes from the Spanish Grand Prix earned enough of your nominations to reach the final ten.

Kamui Kobayashi took seventh place off Jenson Button with a characteristically thrusting move on lap 33. He went on to pass Rosberg ahead to finish fifth.

Hamilton on Ricciardo and Vergne, Spanish Grand Prix

Lewis Hamilton lost pole position and had to start from last place when the stewards discovered insufficient fuel in his car after qualifying.

He climbed through the field to salvage eighth, passing both Toro Rosso drivers in superb style on the way.

Grosjean on Hamilton, European Grand Prix

This pass by Romain Grosjean on Hamilton on lap ten of the European Grand Prix moved the Lotus driver into second place. He was still in that position 30 laps later when he retired with alternator failure.

Vettel on Webber, Belgian Grand Prix

The Red Bull drivers had a hard time making progress in Belgium with their typically poor straight line speed. But Vettel found a way by carrying graeter speed through Blanchimont to attack drivers at the chicane.

He used the tactic to great effect on several of his rivals including team mate Mark Webber on lap nine for ninth place. He continued his ascent through the field to finish second.

Raikkonen on Schumacher, Belgian Grand Prix

Along with Vettel, Kimi Raikkonen is the other driver who featured twice on this list. And both his nominations are for passes on the same driver – Michael Schumacher.

The pair had a lengthy battle in Belgium which was finally settled when Raikkonen got alongside him on the run towards Eau Rouge.

Massa on Senna, Singapore Grand Prix

Felipe Massa was recovering from a delay due to a puncture earlier in the race when he caught Bruno Senna on lap 43.

The Williams driver appeared not to see him, and after losing control Massa gathered his car back up in time to get it stopped for the hairpin and complete the move. He complained to the stewards that Senna had blocked him – they ruled the move was legitimate, but it made for dramatic viewing.

Hulkenberg on Hamilton and Grosjean, Korean Grand Prix

Nico Hulkenberg was in superb form in the closing stages of the year. This savvy double-pass on Hamilton, who was struggling with a car problem, and Grosjean, netted him a sixth-place finish in Korea.

Alonso on Webber, Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

With title rival Vettel starting in the pit lane, Fernando Alonso had to make the most of his opportunity in Abu Dhabi. He got off to a good start by passing Webber on lap one, leaving his braking to the last possible moment as he came unnervingly close to Pastor Maldonado’s Williams.

Raikkonen on Schumacher, Brazilian Grand Prix

Raikkonen on Schumacher part two was an impressive display of precise driving by both racers. During his last retirement in 2006 Schumacher had passed Raikkonen at the same corner – this time the roles were reversed.

But what about…

This top ten list was compiled from the best passes nominated by F1 Fanatic readers throughout 2012. If your favourite pass doesn’t appear, it’s because it didn’t get enough nominations.

You can find all the nominations pages here.

Vote for the best pass of 2012

Which of these ten moves was the best pass of 2012? Cast your vote and leave a comment below.

What was the best pass of 2012?

  • Vettel on Rosberg, Australian Grand Prix (2%)
  • Kobayashi on Button, Spanish Grand Prix (3%)
  • Hamilton on Ricciardo and Vergne, Spanish Grand Prix (7%)
  • Grosjean on Hamilton, European Grand Prix (1%)
  • Vettel on Webber, Belgian Grand Prix (2%)
  • Raikkonen on Schumacher, Belgian Grand Prix (20%)
  • Massa on Senna, Singapore Grand Prix (16%)
  • Hulkenberg on Hamilton and Grosjean, Korean Grand Prix (12%)
  • Alonso on Webber, Abu Dhabi Grand Prix (4%)
  • Raikkonen on Schumacher, Brazilian Grand Prix (33%)

Total Voters: 642

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Vote for the best overtaker of 2012

Which driver made the best passes during the 2012 season? Vote here and have your say in the comments.

Who was the best overtaker of 2012?

  • Sebastian Vettel (14%)
  • Mark Webber (0%)
  • Lewis Hamilton (13%)
  • Jenson Button (2%)
  • Fernando Alonso (18%)
  • Felipe Massa (1%)
  • Michael Schumacher (0%)
  • Nico Rosberg (0%)
  • Kimi Raikkonen (40%)
  • Romain Grosjean (0%)
  • Paul di Resta (0%)
  • Nico Hulkenberg (2%)
  • Kamui Kobayashi (4%)
  • Sergio Perez (1%)
  • Daniel Ricciardo (0%)
  • Jean-Eric Vergne (0%)
  • Pastor Maldonado (0%)
  • Bruno Senna (0%)
  • Heikki Kovalainen (0%)
  • Vitaly Petrov (3%)
  • Narain Karthikeyan (0%)
  • Pedro de la Rosa (0%)
  • Timo Glock (0%)
  • Charles Pic (0%)
  • Jerome d'Ambrosio (2%)

Total Voters: 602

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2012 F1 season review


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152 comments on Top ten passes of 2012: Vote for the best

  1. Abnash (@abnash) said on 7th December 2012, 19:20

    Hamilton on the 2 Toro Rosso’s was magic and was a representation of everything Lewis is about

  2. Stan (@lufc4ever) said on 7th December 2012, 19:34

    I voted Massa on Senna at Singapore, with both Raikkonen passes and the Hulkenburg pass on Hamilton and Grosjean close behind. Voted Raikkonen as best overtaker.

    While Raikkonen’s passes on Schumacher and the Hulkenburg pass were technically ‘better’ than Massa’s pass, Massa’s pass was almost genius. To squeeze through that small a gap and keep the car out of the wall on the 2nd tightest circuit in F1 (after Monaco), required control, power and unbelievable bravery. It was dramatic and took your breath away, just what F1 is all about.

    Both of Raikkonen’s passes were clean, brave and accomplished, and showed the mark of a fantastic overtaker. Hulkenburg’s pass was not as dramatic but to get the job done so efficiently on 2 drivers in much faster cars than the Force India was really impressive.

  3. mark (@markp) said on 7th December 2012, 19:59

    Massa on Raikkonen at COTA. I appreciate it did not get nominated because not enough people voted for it was it even close. I think the tv did not pick it up live but got a brief replay.

  4. JamieFranklinF1 (@jamiefranklinf1) said on 7th December 2012, 20:25

    Had to go with Hulkenberg’s move on Grosjean and Hamilton in Korea, because it was incredible. That being said, I’m quite surprised that Alonso’s overtake on Hamilton on lap 1 in India isn’t here. Three World Champions racing wheel to wheel, mere inches apart was just as good, if not better than the Hulkenberg move, and by my accounts, better that most here. Though judging by the polls, the majority don’t seem to agree with me.

  5. david d.m. said on 7th December 2012, 21:52

    Hey Keith just curious don’t you get into trouble for posting links to this FOM videos?

  6. Ben (@scuderia29) said on 7th December 2012, 23:49

    Massa’s overtake on senna is the only overtake that truly made me gasp as it happened…thats why it gets my vote :D

  7. Younger Hamii (@younger-hamii) said on 8th December 2012, 0:57

    Never have I witnessed Hamilton been overtaken that frequently in a season.

    But to deservedly mention a few more:

    - Hamilton on Rosberg in Bahrain – Off the track or not, in theory, he passed Rosberg so it’s an overtake personally & a demonstration of Lewis still possessing that renowned audacity when in comes to overtaking, perhaps fueled by frustration from one of the many McLaren operational errors in the form of their poor pit-stops.

    - Alonso on Grosjean in Valencia – Was thinking earlier yesterday & thought ‘well with Vettel’s retirement shortly following, that overtake pretty much won him the race in hindsight’, other than that, I loved how the onboard showed Alonso wrestling the Ferrari through the right kink that’s effectively Turn 1, after the pit lane, whilst in the Lotus’ slipstream, gives me a lot of exhilaration & it was a combination of calculation (acing his restart) & faith in Grosjean that when he turned in, Grosjean would leave him sufficient space. Given Grosjean’s issues with spatial awareness this season, retrospectively, it’s slightly surprising that it all ended well.

    - Hamilton on Alonso in Silverstone – Similar to Lewis’ on Rosberg in that it’s debatable as to whether it’s classified as an overtake or not (Lewis was ahead of Fernando into Brooklands when he came back on the inside). Giving something to the dedicated crowd, who were committed regardless of what happened throughout the weekend with not being able to gain access into the track with traffic & rain not helping the cause & whatnot, anyway, it was just Lewis being Lewis & persevering not taking any concern of how his race would ultimately turn out & providing a bit of entertainment.

    - Kimi on Hulkenberg (I believe) in Hockenheim – The commitment shown to go around the outside of one, at the rarest of places (Turn 7) are just two primary elements in what makes an overtake stand out from the others.

    - Hamilton on Vettel in Hockeheim (Lewis unlapping himself) - Just found it really amusing, both Hamilton & Vettel were running their own races & if Lewis’ race involves being quicker than Vettel at a phase of the race, then why can’t he have a go at the latter, ultimately if the quicker driver sets off into the distance then that driver is no longer of an hindrance to the slower driver’s race, or simply let the quicker driver past & run your own race. Good thing the overtake wasn’t controversial to the extent that the FIA were mentioned for little clarity.

    - Vettel on Button in Abu Dhabi - Vettel’s move on Button demonstrate how two can go into one corner without making any contact or irrational moves, as witnessed in the incidents proceeding the overtake.

    - Hamilton on Vettel in Austin – Backmarker provided Lewis with probably his one & only opportunity to get ahead of Vettel as he was constantly just missing out on getting passed by a few tenths but he made the most of it although Vettel frankly didn’t make it easy; perilously close combat down into the braking zone with Vettel coming across slightly as Lewis pulled over to the right..

    - Alonso on Massa & Webber in Interlagos

    - Massa on Di Resta in Interlagos - Extremely bold given that the inside of Turn 5 was fairly damp, particularly on the apex with the paint being more slippery.

    • Ral (@ral) said on 8th December 2012, 23:42

      I think you were thinking of Kimi on Di Resta in Germany. Overtake started in the hairpin and continued on for another 4 corners before he made it stick with both of them giving each other just enough space to go through side by side.

  8. don brown said on 8th December 2012, 4:18

    RAI/SCH : best overtake, without any doubt.
    RAI : best overtaker for 2k12

  9. Nixon (@nixon) said on 8th December 2012, 7:10

    still not to sure about the best overtake.
    But for the best overtaker gotta be Alonso mainly because of his superb first lap overtakes ( most notably outside of kimi in monza and double overtake in Brazil)
    grosjean pass and the above pass were are also good.

    • victor (@genevene) said on 8th December 2012, 12:16

      nth spectacular with that, with the sublime straightline pace of F2012, its easy.

      Kimi should be the best overtaker, all his overtakes were on corners and without DRS aid. And he also prefers overtake from the outside which is the hardest

  10. infy (@infy) said on 8th December 2012, 13:29

    Alonso’s first lap overtakes were incredible. Surprised none were included.

  11. There were so many great passes this year but I am happily surprised to see that two from Räikkönen listed here currently hold 50% of all the votes along with 39% best overtaker. Welcome back Kimi, we are thrilled to accommodate you!

  12. Atticus (@atticus-2) said on 8th December 2012, 15:02

    OK, here’s the deal.

    I took into account skill, importance (the further ahead the running order, the better), bravery (the higher the speeds, the better), relative long-term pace advantage (the less, the better, e. g. from tyres, setup, etc.), unfavourable external factors (e. g. rain, high fuel load).

    Unsurprisingly, Raikkonen on Schumacher in Interlagos came out on top – but only just. Surprisingly, Alonso on Webber was second by a tiny margin. The former scored very well in skill and external factors obviously, and it secured gold by never being rated below 7th (importance). The latter very utterly important, it scored well in terms of relative pace advantage (with Ferrari being slower than Red Bull generally and particularly not heating up tyres as well – pass was on lap 1) and it had the highest fuel load on board of all ten, so it was near the top in external factors too.

    Vettel on Rosberg and Massa on Senna came out near the top overall too.

  13. Fernando Cruz said on 9th December 2012, 10:46

    Senna on Hulkenberg at Silverstone was one of the best and is not here. Senna on Perez at Hungaroring, on the outside of 2nd corner, was also very good. I think there were a lot of very good passes in the midfield, but they were noticed more by followers of certain drivers, which is understandable.

  14. Puzano (@puzano) said on 9th December 2012, 13:32

    Easy. Kimi on Schumacher in Belgium. Shame I kinda missed it at the moment ’cause of the bad view I had on the screens..

  15. Obi-Spa Kenobi (@obi-spa-kenobi) said on 9th December 2012, 19:54

    I’m a Kimi fan for sure, and both his moves on Schumi are notable. But Massa’s overtake on Senna is a lesson in car control in tight quarters. So my vote goes there.

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