As interesting as a wet race can be, or maybe a race full of crashes, retirements and unpredictabilities, I think that by far the best thing in F1 is a fight for the win, between two drivers or more (That’s probably the reason why Canadian and Turkish GPs were rated so highly).
So I’m wondering, how many fights for victories have we had this year?. If we exclude the first corner overtakings (Sepang, Interlagos…), technical problems (Sakhir, Korea), team orders (Hockenheim) and the races with no fights for victories, from this season we only have 4 races.
2 of those were fights via different strategies or via pit stops – Webber won in Hungaroring because of different strategy (which he made work perfectly) and Vettel’s penalty, and Alonso won in Monza with a better in-lap pit stop and out-lap.
So we only had two really good fights for the win this year – Istanbul and Montreal.
In Istanbul it was because the McLarens were faster than the Red Bulls after the pit stop, and I’m thinking maybe it was a bad thing that Webber and Vettel crashed. Given the McLaren’s straight line speed at the time it could be a three or even a four-way battle for the win, which would be just amazing.
In Montreal there was big tyre degradation and noone knew how many pit stops would be needed. There were five drivers with a shot at the victory in the race, and it was late in the race that we realised the Red Bulls were out of it. Hamilton and Alonso had the amazing pit battle, and then they were battling for some time, and Hamilton got in front. And even later in the race there was a chance of Button catching Hamilton and taking the win due to better tyre managing, but it turned out Hamilton did just as good a job.
But still, it was an incredible race with a great fight for the win, which is rare these days.
So, what other races from previous seasons do you remember had similar fights for victories? The two that quickly come to mind are races in Spa in 2000 and 2008, but what about the others?
EDIT: Shanghai could count as well, as Rosberg lost the lead to Button following his mistake. But it was nowhere as dramatic as Montreal and Istanbul.