2012 F1 season review
The biggest stories, the best features and the most compelling debates. Here are F1 Fanatic’s 50 most interesting articles of 2012.
The big move on the driver market this year was Lewis Hamilton’s switch to Mercedes for 2013.
Could the desire to improve safety and the search for more efficient performance lead to cockpits and wheels on F1 cars being enclosed?
“The teams are doing what they can and COTA are straining every sinew to make the event a success, but I don’t see a fraction of that effort from the sport’s governing body or commercial rights holder.”
Ferrari’s controversial tactics in America provoked considerable discussion…
…as did their request that the FIA ‘clarify’ whether Vettel broke the rules in Brazil.
After clinching his third championship Vettel alluded to rumours about him joining Ferrari being spread to destabilise his relationship with Red Bull.
A dramatic decision by the stewards in Spain provided the subject of the most-commented article of the year.
The lengths F1 is going to create exciting races using the Drag Reductions System and more rapidly degrading tyres comes up again and again in the comments.
Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo hit out at Bernie Ecclestone, saying “old age is clearly incompatible with certain roles and responsibilities”.
One of F1′s newest teams died at the end of the season.
Part of the reasoning given by the stewards for Grosjean’s ban after the Belgian Grand Prix was the consequences it had for the championship, which many readers objected to.
Caterham hoped to gain some attention by being the first to reveal their 2012 car in a magazine and they got exactly that, though perhaps not as they intended. First the pictures were leaked online a day early and much of the ensuing discussion was about how ugly the stepped noses had made the 2012 generation cars.
“Those who go along quietly with what is happening, or chime in with another naive chorus of ‘sport should not be political’, are giving tacit endorsement to F1′s support for Bahraini oppression.”
Luca di Montezemolo said he doesn’t want “two roosters in the same hen house”. What does that say about Felipe Massa?
An error by McLaren meant Hamilton started last instead of first in Spain.
On the end of Rubens Barrichello’s F1 career after he lost his seat to Bruno Senna.
Thoughts on Michael Schumacher’s return to retirement.
“It’s easy to dismiss the FOTA Fans Forum as merely a talking shop – but talking is important when you’re speaking to the people who matter.”
It looked inevitable Valtteri Bottas would replace Bruno Senna at Williams in 2013 from the moment the team stated Bottas would drive Senna’s car in most of the first practice sessions this year.
The stewards finally got tough on drivers going off the track to gain an advantage, but track design should also discourage it from happening.
Early in the season there was much discussion over whether tyre degradation had made racing too unpredictable.
Is F1 better now than it was ten years ago? Definitely – here’s why.
A selection of Suzuka’s great championship-deciding moments.
Astonishing near-misses and brushes with disaster from the annals of Formula One.
Amazing interactive video of Sebastien Buemi driving at Rudskogen Motorsenter in Norway.
Red Bull’s celebrated designer Adrian Newey at the wheel of his own Red Bull RB6 and the earlier Leyton-House CG901B.
Slightly odd F1 driver video of the year number one.
Slightly odd F1 driver video of the year number two.
It wasn’t unlucky 13 for McLaren in 1998: The MP4-13 won the constructors’ championship and Mika Hakkinen claimed the drivers’ title.
Three six-wheeled F1 cars appeared at the Goodwood Festival of Speed: the Williams FW08B, March 2-4-0 and Tyrrell P34.
Ayrton Senna tested for Williams in 1983, eleven years before he joined the team as a race driver.
Alain Prost lost the 1983 drivers’ championship in the final round driving the Renault RE40. It was also the first car to feature an exhaust-blown diffuser.
Porsche left F1 50 years ago after finally winning a Grand Prix with the boxer-engined 804.
Really good autobiographies are rare but this long overdue book from fifties F1 racer Tony Brooks was definitely worth the wait.
Unfortunately unfinished, but still essential reading.
Want to know everything about every F1 driver ever? Start here.
A candid and refreshingly funny read about life in the Formula One paddock.
A different take on the usual F1 racing game from Codemasters.
This proved a surprisingly tricky question to answer.
Romain Grosjean was accused of causing seven first-lap crashes after the pile-up in the Belgian Grand Prix. But was that figure accurate?
Also, why Alonso didn’t get a penalty in Valencia as Hamilton did at the Circuit de Catalunya.
Grand Prix flashbacks
The turbulent 1982 season was the focus of three Grand Prix flashbacks this year:
- 1982 San Marino Grand Prix: Villeneuve and Pironi’s fatal feud at Ferrari
- 1982 Belgian Grand Prix: Gilles Villeneuve killed at Zolder
- 1982 Canadian Grand Prix: Start line crash kills Paletti
After being runner-up on three occasions, Nigel Mansell finally lifted the crown 20 years ago at the Hungarian Grand Prix.
Lotus and Jim Clark smashed the opposition with the Lotus 25 at Spa, the precursor to several years of success.
Mexico enjoyed F1 success again this year thanks to Sergio Perez. Their last Grand Prix took place 20 years ago.
One of F1′s great battles took place 25 years ago at Silverstone.
For the first time in over 40 years there were no Italian drivers on the grid during the whole of the season.
Need to buy a present for an F1 fan? Look no further.
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2012 F1 season review
- The complete F1 Fanatic 2012 season review
- What F1 Fanatics thought of 2012: The year in polls
- The drivers and cars of 2012
- F1 Fanatic’s 50 article highlights of 2012
- 11 different Driver of the Weekend winners in 2012
Browse all 2012 F1 season review articles
Images © Daimler/Hoch Zwei, Red Bull/Getty images, HRT F1 Team, Red Bull/Getty images, Daimler/Hoch Zwei, Ferrari spa/Ercole Colombo, F1 Fanatic, Williams/Sutton, Williams/Sutton