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Vote: The Top 5 F1 Moments of the Year
Posted By: James Allen  |  20 Dec 2009   |  4:35 pm GMT  |  190 comments

Over the Christmas and New Year period here on JA on F1, as well as monitoring the ongoing news sagas, like Michael Schumacher’s comeback, we will have plenty of easy-going festive content; we’ll be looking back at the 2009 season, running a short season of forward-looking pieces and a couple of public votes. So keep checking in, especially if you are snowed-in and bored!

The first vote is for the top five moments of the year. We had some great racing in 2009, some stunning passing moves and some dramatic moments both on and off the circuit.

I want you to put your top five moments of the year in one to five order, with a brief explanation of your reasons for choosing them – and I mean brief, please don’t write War and Peace..

You might have enjoyed Kamui Kobayashi battling with Jenson Button at Interlagos, Lewis Hamilton’s pole lap in Abu Dhabi, Sebastian Vettel’s pole lap in Silverstone, Giancarlo Fisichella’s battle with Kimi Raikkonen at Spa, the announcement that the British Grand Prix was staying at Silverstone – there were many great moments.

On Christmas Eve I will go in and choose the five best entries and the winners will each get a signed copy of “2009: A Revolutionary Year”, my book of the 2009 season through the eyes of posts from this blog.

* * *
The book has proved very popular, I’m delighted to say and we only have a few hundred left. It’s a limited production run so if you have been hesitating, now is the time to buy as they will be gone soon. In future years the production run will be bigger so this first edition could become quite collectable. The book is a large format paperback priced at £9-99. All copies bought through this site will be signed. Click on the link on the right to buy.

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190 Comments
  1. Alex says:

    1. The first pole of Jenson in Oz. We learned that Brawn GP is for real.
    2. The moment Jenson won his WDC
    3. The fight between Jenson and Kimi for Monaco GP Pole
    4. The victory of Raikkonen in Spa
    5. Rubens winning in Valencia

  2. Alex Gibbons says:

    5. Vettel’s perfect Silverstone weekend. Sheer dominance.
    4. Kamui Kobayashi holds off Button in Abu Dhabi. No fear of anyone, not even the new champion.
    3. Raikkonen gets his only race win of the season at Spa Francorchamps against all the odds.
    2. Hamilton v. Vettel as the sun set in Abu Dhabi. F1′s best young talents battle it out in the most spectacular setting.
    1. Mark Webber’s first race win. Amazing moment.

  3. My five moments are:

    1. Brawn 1-2 in Aus.GP – from nearly closing down for good to producing an awe inspiring car, Brawn had just completed an historic one-two victory on their debut race. No team are likely to do so ever again…well, maybe Mercedes GP, if that counts (!)

    2. Vettel Pole in China – Driveshaft problems throughout the weekend restricted Vettel to one run per session. He topped each one, with perfect laps. The kid is special.

    3. Hamilton wins in Hungary – Worst car ever in March, one of the best in August. How. The. Hell.

    4. Fisi take pole in Spa – Backmarker slowly improves as season goes on and then BANG, Fisi on pole. Amazing, only one of the new teams can possibly beat this story in 2010.

    5. Kamui Kobayashi in Brazil – He’s a rookie, never raced at Interlagos or in the Toyota and yet he battled with the world-champion in waiting like crazy, he fights like a pro and earns immediate praise and respect. Special guy.

    Sorry if you think this is long, but it wasn’t exactly War & Peace was it?

  4. Aaron James says:

    In no particular order….

    1. Badoer being fined for speeding at the European GP

    2. The qualifying time chaos at the end of the Hungarian GP qualifying

    3. Kobayashi vs Button and Nakajima at the Brazilian Grand Prix

    4. Beardy Branson beating Eddie Jordan in who could swear first on BBC F1 coverage.

    5. The qualifying mayhem at the Japanese and Brazilian Grand Prixs

    6. Bourdais being axed by Toro Rosso.

    7. The Monaco GP webchat with James Allen

    8. Eddie Jordan’s interview ambushing throughout the year

    9. Eddie Jordan’s infamous ice pole on live TV

    10. Eddie Jordan’s dress sense.

    And a special mention goes to this blog, who i have enjoyed reading this season. Hats off to James, Luca and all that make it possible, and merry christmas to all.

    1. Sam Okhai says:

      Too funny, Badoer fined for speeding …

    2. James W says:

      Five…?

      1. Aaron James says:

        I couldnt choose between the 10- James is deciding five, he didnt state a limit on how many we could submit for choosing.

      2. John Kilmartin says:

        “I want you to put your top five moments of the year in one to five order,…”

        Well done all the same. I like the lateral thinking and it might open a few peoples eyes to nominating other than the obvious.

      3. Aaron James says:

        I missed that bit John…

  5. Ben Youngs says:

    1. Jenson Button running down the pit straight after parking in the wrong spot at Monaco.
    - This was one of those rare ‘human’ moments in F1 akin to Nigel giving Senna a lift in ’91. Great to see!

    2. Mark Webber’s first race victory at the Nürburgring.
    - We all wanted Mark to win a race and despite the stewards throwing everything they could at him, Webber triumphed in style.

    3. Button’s Brazilian Grand Prix.
    - It was a drive of supreme bravery and proof, if any were needed, that he’s a worthy World Champion.

    4. Force India’s rise up the ranks.
    - Brought about brilliant upgrades to the car mid season we amazingly saw Fisichella grab pole in Spa and some gutsy drives by Sutil and Liuzzi.

    5. Kobayashi’s banzai driving!
    - Supreme performances by the rookie (despite his over-exuberance) were great to watch. It was like having Montoya back in the sport again.

    1. rpaco says:

      Could your number one be a new thing for
      F1? A Le Mans Finish instead of start?

    2. melonfarmer says:

      Excellent choices.

      I am very pleased to see Sauber taking a punt on Kobayashi, though am mystified at how he could only finish 16th in GP2.

  6. Richard Bell says:

    1. Brazil GP – Featured everything a good GP should, crashes, flames, stunning overtaking, a driver on full attack to claim the title.
    2. Australia podium – The first time Brawn GP stunned the F1 world, true fairytale stuff.
    3. Fisichella pole – Nobody predicted it, I like surprises
    4. Silverstone saved
    5. Hearing Massa recovery

  7. Tom says:

    James, good shout, it’s always nice to look back at a great season over the xmas period.

    Highlights for me were (in reverse order:)

    Trulli and Sutil’s fisticuffs at Brazil, always nice to see some passion in the game and not just a cruise and collect attitude

    Luca Badoer falling off his Ferrari scooter during his ignominious return – he couldn’t catch a break!

    Mark Webber screaming down the radio after his win at Nurburgring

    Ross Brawn’s tears on the pitwall at Brazil – usually such a reserved man it was great to see the emotional side of him

    Kimi with his ice cream in Malaysia, the mercurial ice man summed up in one image!

    I wrote a similar post myself recently, feel free to take a look: http://temcloughlin.wordpress.com/2009/11/24/f1-2009-highlights-on-and-off-the-track/

    Have a great christmas!

  8. Joel Heaton says:

    Ooh, great. It’s a hard one, since there were so many great moments, but I think these were my favourite:

    1 – Mark Webber’s first victory. This was long overdue and he did it in such style. He took an excellent pole position after a challenging qualifying session, then drove a dominant race to take victory despite a drive-through penalty. The fact that he did this in a season where he was recovering from a broken leg and shoulder is nothing short of remarkable.

    2 – Giancarlo Fisichella’s pole position at Spa was an awesome display of how the right group of people can overcome financial deficits (in comparison to other teams) and build a fast car. The Force India had some rushed work done on it as their engine decision was late, but Fisichella put it on pole in Belgium in spectacular style, on a realistic fuel strategy, and had the pace to win it (even Raikkonen himself admitted so).

    3 – Rubens Barrichello’s win in Valencia is next for me. After some very tough years since his last victory in 2004, it was great to see him fighting for the win and then take to the top step. It was also very nice to see everyone cheering for him down the entire length of the pit lane – a popular victory if ever I saw one.

    4 – Kamui Kobayashi in Abu Dhabi. Yes, his debut in Brazil was very impressive, but his drive here was even more so. In a season where all other rookies, with the exception of Buemi who had the advantage of a lot of testing, had struggled to get to grips with the cars and of them only Buemi had scored, Kobayashi scoring a handful of points in his second race, on merit rather than luck, was fantastic to see. His aggressive yet mature driving was spectacular and I think that there will be a lot more to come from him next year. He might end up being Japan’s best driver yet.

    5 – Jenson Button’s drive in Brazil to seal the championship. It’s low down on my list, but I think that’s mostly because he had been so boring up until that point after his last victory in Turkey. It was a brilliant drive, the kind you expected from him back in, say, 2004 when he wasn’t fighting for the championship. It was ace to hear him shouting down the radio as he made that pass and then to watch him drive to a points position from way down on the grid and take that trophy.

    They might not match up with everyone else’s, and I haven’t included Jenson Button actually being world champion as one of them, but these are the five things that made me jump out of my chair with a smile on my face.

  9. Ian says:

    I received my signed copy of the book on Thursday, it’s fantastic quality with some great photography. I’m looking forward to reading it over the xmas period.

    James, maybe you should consider creating a post for feedback on the publication?

    Many thanks by the way for a great year of insight and comment, merry christmas to you and all your family!

    Ian.

    1. John Kilmartin says:

      He’s far too modest.

  10. Chris says:

    1. Brawns GP’s first test/winning streak at the beginning of the season then going on to win the titles

    2.McLaren’s comeback after being so off the pace at the start of the season

    3.Kobaysahi proving not all rookie’s struggle and for the entertainment value

    4.The whole “Crashgate” Saga

    5.Force India at Spa

  11. Paige Michael-Shetley says:

    1. The radio transmission from Mark Webber after his win at the Nurburgring. In a sport often accused of lacking personalities, it was so great to hear a driver let it all out after getting his first win. I don’t think there’s anyone who was upset about him finally winning after so many hard and unlucky years in F1. In a sense, Webber’s first win was as good a symbol as any for the whole of the 2009 season.

    2. Jenson Button’s championship-clinching performance in Interlagos. After so many months of hardship as Brawn GP stopped developing the car and yet another hurdle of adversity with a poor qualifying performance the day before, Button vanquished his demons and naysayeres with the drive of a lifetime from 14th on the grid to 5th in clinching the championship.

    3. The first test of the BGP 001. When reports from people like James came in about how dominant the car was in its first test at Barcelona, it became very clear that 2009 would be a very interesting year in Formula One, to say the least.

    4. Giancarlo Fisichella’s pole at Spa. I think “What the hell?” says it all about the moment, and about 2009 itself, really.

    5. Lewis Hamilton’s pole lap at Abu Dhabi. Racing is all about speed, so the best lap of the year should certainly be considered a top-5 moment. Simply put, Hamilton’s Q3 lap at Abu Dhabi was the best lap of the year: a performance truly defining the word “fast.”

  12. Scribe says:

    1 1-2 in Australia, the flag the finish line, the podium with Brawn Barrichello and Button standing there covered in chapaigne and disbelife. Perfect F1 moment.

    2 Button (not even a huge fan btw) passing Grosjean in Brazil, the excitement just ignited when it seemed we where going to have a championship on our hands. Great pass too.

    3 Webber winning in Germany. So deserved and a fanatatic drive. An the radio transmission as well. One of those unstopable days people get sometimes

    4 Hamilton winning in Hungary. As a McLaren fan this race was such medicine for me. The facr that it was won in dry conditions form a good spot on the grid just made it all better. An the pass on Webber was good to.

    5 Felipe Baby Stay Cool!/”WE ARE THE CHAMPIONS”

  13. 1. Button and Barichello 1-2 Melbourne (new team, a perfect mixture of experience and talent leading to a thoroughly deserved win to start the season on a high)

    2. Raikkonen and Fisichella 1-2 Spa Francorchamps (what more of a paradox could you get on such a fast-paced track than the renowned Ferrari in an intense battle with the newest team on the block, Force India, proving that the great drivers aren’t limited to the great teams)

    3. The Grosjean scandal, Singapore (being called the darkest hour of Formula 1, it transformed from a meaningless crash to the team fighting for their survival in the sport)

    4. Hamilton losing it on the final lap of Monza (it just goes to show that if there’s even a hint of gaining a higher place, the racing mind kicks in above all else)

    5. Button and Webber scrap, Abu Dhabi (a stunning performance from both, highlighting the drive and commitment that each driver has to score as highly as possible. Also great TV viewing!)

    1. Aaron James says:

      Grosjean scandal? Dont you mean Piquet LOL

      1. My mistake, lol – yes.

  14. Oliver Knight says:

    1.The Silverstone GP weekend. The atmosphere was unlike any other sporting event i’ve been to and the standing ovation for vettel at the end said all you need to know about the weekend.

    2.Jenson clinching the title at interlagos. Fantastic race from jenson that proved all the doubters wrong, overtaking, aggression and a great scrap with “crazy” Kobayashi.

    3.Mark Webbers first win.(especially his radio on the cool down lap). Outstanding drive that showed true grit and determination, still won despite a drive though and the pure joy of his radio at the end was a great moment.

    4.Lewis Hamilton winning the Singapore GP. The drive of a champion, won that race in a still inferior car but he dragged every last thousandth of a second out his Mclaren.

    5.Force India on pole at Spa. I pretty much hit the floor from shock when qualy finished. Force India showed that you don’t need hundreds of millions of pounds to compete for a win and was a good news story for F1 at a time when it needed it most.

  15. Kav says:

    1: Raikkonen winning at Spa, not a great race but was one of the best of the year and my favourite driver scored Ferrari’s sole win (I love hearing that Italian national anthem) of the year.

    2: Mark Webbers maiden win, hearing him shouting mixed with crying at the end of the race made me emotional! I really felt happy for him!

    3: Chinese GP, best race of the year by far!

    4: Barrichello’s win at Valencia, this guy didn’t have a seat at the beginning of the year and to get two wins just proved he still has it to get good results in F1.

    5: Kobayashi’s debut, his career would be over if it weren’t for this 2 race stint. His life has completely changed for the better, such luck to get the opportunity to make his debut.

    Honourable mention : Brundle pushing in the queue at Valencia to interview Vettel in his grid walk and pissing off that Sky reporter! Classic!

  16. ethone says:

    1. M.Schumacher “stepping back” from his comeback. A moment of humility for a passionate driver who wanted to help out his team and his friend Felipe.
    2. Mark Webbers first win. It took a great driver long enough and then some, add in his injury and it was probably the win I liked most this year.
    3. Force India at Spa. The pole position and second place finish. Loved to see how an underdog was able to run this far up front.
    4. Hamilton trying everything in the last lap at Monza, even if there wasn’t a realistic chance to improve his position. That’s real determination, real racing rage if you risk crashing hard like this just because you probably don’t know how else to race.
    5. The withdrawal of BMW and Toyota, following Honda and the three-quarters-withdrawal of Renault.
    FOTA “wins” the battle and still constructors chase each other out of the door. As much as it may be bad short-term, I’m all for shrinking F1′s budgets and teams healthy.

    Honorable mention to Grosjean for spinning in Piquet corner at Singapore.

  17. Ed says:

    1. Webber’s first victory
    After following Webber’s career from the start, and after the near misses over the years, it was very satisfying to see Webber finally break his duck.

    2. Button wins world championship
    The moment a world championship is won is usually one of the best moments of the year, and this year was no different, with the obvious relief of the team to finally wrap up the season despite not always being the fastest car in the second half of the season.

    3. Brawn debut in Melbourne
    Despite the testing pace, there was still some scepticism. But Brawn, in particular Button, proved this wrong in Melbourne with a dominant start to the season.

    4. Kobayashi’s debut
    Dispelling the perception that 2009 was too hard for debutants, Kobayashi came into F1 with 2 performances that showed tenacity, speed, confidence and courage.

    5. Rubens wins in Valencia
    After missing a few potential wins, it was great to finally see Rubens make it to the top step of the podium for the first time since 2004, and keeping his championship hunt alive.

  18. carlm21 says:

    1. Ross Brawn saves team- Secures Honda buy out and creates Brawn GP. Wins Constructors and drivers titles.
    2. Jenson Button Brazil drive to clinch world championship. Great drive, abit of everything.
    3. F1 Keeps going- Teams sign up to F1 to keep the sport going.
    4. Lewis Hamilton Maturity. Going from a bad car to a good car. Handled it well and became a better all round driver.
    5. Silverstone Grand Prix announment. Secures future for home of British Grand Prix.

  19. Claire says:

    Tricky to narrow it down to 5, but here’s mine:

    1. Red Bull 1-2 at Shanghai – first win for Red Bull, first 1-2 for the team with two fantastic performances. A massive achievement and great to watch.

    2. Fisichella’s pole position lap at Spa – wonderful to watch and I was on tenterhooks throughout. The team totally deserved it.

    3. Webber’s first win at the Nurburgring – winning with a drive through penalty isn’t easy, but he did it. At last, Mark Webber is a Grand Prix winner.

    4. Kobayashi’s battle with Button – very much of a reminder of the Sato/Alonso battle in Canada in 2007 – thoroughly enjoyable racing! It’s always good to watch a talented new boy challenge the main title contender.

    5. Barrichello’s win at Monza – his second win in the season, but the one where he was clearly more confident that he was still in F1 for a reason. One of the greatest victories for Rubens.

  20. Dave Walker says:

    My Top 5 ON-TRACK moments from an incredible F1 season

    1. Brawn turn up in Australia and blow the field away

    I had never seen anything like it. Front row of the grid locked out. 1-2 in the race (albeit thanks to the Vettel and Kubica collision), for a team who didn’t exist a month or so ago at the time.

    2. Jenson Button in Monaco

    Button’s best drive of his career in my opinion, besides Interlagos. He controlled the race start to finish, and to cap it off, running down the start-finish straight to the podium!!

    3. Mark Webber’s first win

    The most unluckiest man in F1 breaks his duck and I felt so emotionally happy that he did it in difficult circumstances (back from broken leg, stop-go in the race

    4. Fisichella at Spa

    To witness Fisi’s pole and 2nd place was remarkable and a great story of how far they have come.

    5. Button wins the championship

    Fantastic drive to clinch the championship. Button knew he had to work hard to get what he wanted, and did it by racing, not playing the points game.

  21. Simo says:

    1. – The Brazilian Grand Prix

    2. – The Australian Grand Prix

    3. – Force India’s Performances in Italy & Belgium

    4. – Mark Webber winning his first Grand Prix in Germany.

    5. – Jenson running down the pitlane in Monaco!

    * * *

    Seeing Jenson Button take the crown at the Brazilian Grand Prix was just fantastic, after his long-hard thought battle.
    Once again seeing how much the balance had changed in Formula One, with Brawn & Red Bull being strong and Mclaren & Ferrari not so.
    Great to see the “under-dogs” performing at the front of the field.
    Always been a fan of Webbers and was a well deserved win – Finally!!
    Just a classic blooper moment from the 2009 season!

  22. Adam Jassat says:

    1. Giancarlo Fisichella on shock Belgian GP pole
    Did we expect to see Force India on pole? Absolutely not. It’s always nice in F1 to see a backmarker team towards the front end of the grid, in this case at the very front.

    2. Webber’s first win in Germany
    It’s great to see new winner in F1. This adds a new dimension to the sport. A new driver to keep a look out on! Webber, at some points in the championship was looking like he could win it.

    3. Jenson Button’s overtake on Robert Kubica (out of 130R), Japanese GP
    As Martin Brundle said “…moves it beautifully up the inside, no drama, didn’t panic, didn’t lock his brakes. Classic move from Button!”

    4. Jenson Button’s superb diving overtake on Mark Webber, Brazillian GP
    Really wrapped up just how determined Jenson was. A great overtaking manouveur.

    5. News that the British GP was staying at Silverstone.
    Silverstone has a huge part in the history of F1. It was great to hear that that a certain history of British Motorsport would still be associated with the pinnacle of motorsport.

  23. JB says:

    Despite some real lows, 2009 was an incredible season, with so much to choose from, but here goes!

    1/ Button’s charge at Brazil: with overtaking still lacking in F1, Button’s battling drive through the field was one to savour – taking the championship with it was just icing on the cake.

    2/ Webber wins in Germany: A fantastic drive to earn the Aussie the first win that he both craved and deserved immensely – all the sweeter taken under pressure from Vettel in front of his home crowd.

    3/ Kamui Kobayashi arrives in F1: Another rookie headed for an exacting mid season debut, right? Wrong. So pleased to see him gain a race seat for 2010.

    4/ Brawn 1-2 in Melbourne: From the withdrawal of Honda to the birth of Brawn, and *that* first test at Barcelona, it was looking very promising. But for me it was from this moment that we knew we were in for a heck of a season.

    5/ Button joins McLaren: A move that I would have never expected until it happened. Inspired or idiotic? Hard to say, but I for one cannot wait to find out!

  24. Phillip Horton says:

    5 – FP1 Australia – Just the realisation that a new era really WAS happening and that the big teams would struggle.

    4 – Hamilton returning to winning ways: Hungary race – it was a stunning drive that took my breath away

    3 – Probably the heavy rain in Malaysia – absolute chaos and the infamous ‘Felipe baby’ and Kimi enjoying his ice cream

    2 – Japan Qualifying – So many crashes, spills, thrills and it took a while to complete!

    1 – The Brazilian Gp in general, but the post race celebrations when Button and Brawn had realised that they were world champions!

  25. Ted I says:

    Ya know, I’m having a tough time looking back since I’m like a 6 year old on Christmas eve waiting for next year. Sorry to be off topic, but……with the likelihood that the McLaren and Red cars will be competitive, with Schumi in a Merc-Brawn and a more mature Vettel in a Newey design, well, 2010 could easily overshadow 09 with a 4 way battle between Fred, Seb, Hamo and Schumi.

    Next year will have 20 top moments.

  26. Elliot says:

    My top five moments from 2009 – the year I renewed my wedding vows with F1 after a couple of years off:

    Something Old:
    The announcement of the peerless Michael Schumacher’s return in Valencia. It never happened, but all great stories need a great baddie. Let’s hope he can do a deal with Mercedes for 2010.

    Something New:
    The rise of Brawn GP from the ashes of Honda. Yes, the car was already deep into development, but they really went from zeroes to heroes in a year. Jenson’s delight on clinching the title in Brazil was priceless. He drove like a champion that day.

    Something Borrowed:
    Giancarlo Fisichella – imagine how he must’ve felt the night before making his debut for Ferrari – in Monza – after a long F1 career. Fisi was on borrowed time in that seat, and we’ll welcome back Felipe in 2010.

    Something Blue:
    We were all blue in the face until Damon was able to announce the deal enabling Silverstone to host the British GP for the next 17 years. Roll on race weekend in July.

    And A Silver Sixpence In Her Shoe:
    A huge congratulations to the BBC team for such excellent coverage. Jake really shone, and I loved the odd couple of Eddie and DC. Hearing The Chain alone was worth every sixpence of my licence fee!

    Thanks and Merry Christmas all,
    Elliot

  27. Rhys says:

    1. Mark Webber winning his first GP…he was so happy after such a long time of waiting

    2. Felipe Massa getting his firt and only podium of the year..he is my fav driver so..der

    3. Fisi getting pole at Spa..such a special moment for F1 and it was a good story with all the so called ‘gates’

    4. Rubens winning his first race of the year at Valencia…i was so pleased for him

    5. Mark Webber v Jenson Button at the Abu Dhabi GP…amazing racing and a text book defence move as brundle would say :)

  28. martin_tf says:

    1. Jenson Button’s entire Brazillian Grand Prix weekend. A rollercoaster of drama and excitement.

    2. The first morning of winter testing for the Brawn. Wondering is it really that good or did they need sponsors?

    3. Fisichella chasing Raikkonen around Spa and keeping up with him.

    4. Hearing that Schumacher was due to replace Massa.

    5. Sutil v Trulli in Brazil. F1 needs drivers showing more emotion.

  29. Nick Robertson says:

    Surely the moment of the year has to be when Brawn first rolled out their car at Barcelona, and immediately realised that they had an awesome machine on their hands!

  30. Silverstoned says:

    My five moments of the year:

    1 (August 30) KIMI WINS SPA
    A masterclass by the King of Spa with textbook use of Kers to defeat superior machinery. The BBC lauded Fisi and mentioned The Iceman only in passing. We can all now see it was Kimi who won not the Ferrari, and it was the Force India that came second, not Fisi.

    2 (November 18) KIMI OUT OF F1
    Kimi’s agent confirms he has left F1 for WRC: the greatest loss to F1, imho, since Senna’s tragic exit. We watched Ron Dennis show up in Abu Dhabi just in time to block KR’s return to McLaren. Then we watched Haug and Brawn singly then together pursue The Iceman and at the same time bay publicly about his finances. Instead of the winning driver they need, they are now reported to be pursuing an ancient exhibit from Madame Toussaud’s.

    3 (May 21) BUTTON TO GO FOR THE TITLE!!
    This was a pivotal moment, when after 4 wins out of 5, Jens finally decides he may as well be in it to win it, and the press agree with Eddie Jordan that fairytales can come true! You see, there was this diffuser that wasn’t allowed to have a hole in it but if you put two of them together, then the gap wasn’t a hole at all, it was just a gap, so then ….

    4 (July 25) LOOSE BRAWN SPRING HITS MASSA SHOCK
    Surely a major event not just for the unfortunate Massa, but also in its consequences for the Ferrari team. First Shock Schumacher return: he quickly thinks better of taking on The Iceman. Then Badoer, followed by Fisi, are hapless victims of the F60, a machine that mercilessly sorts out the men from the boys…

    5 (September 21) BRIATORE AND SYMONDS BANNED
    Lowest point of the year. If a decent intelligent engineer like PS could be guilty of a plot like this, who can we say would not stoop to tactics like these? Alonso’s role in this not yet clear…

  31. Tom says:

    1) “World champions, baby, yeah!” – Jenson clinching the championship in Interlagos after a thrilling and punishing race featuring him, Lewis and Vettel scything through the field.

    2) “He’s holding me up through the middle sector” – Fisi and Force India’s incredible performance at Spa.

    3) “Yeeeeaaaaahhhhh you beaudy!” – Mark Webber’s long awaited first win in Germany, despite the drive-through (watch this and I challenge you not to smile: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T2CTm0aoOMc)

    4) “Not bad for an old man!” The pit lane’s reaction to Rubens winning in the heat of Valencia proves what a popular figure he remains.

    5) “Forza Felipe, siamo con te” – The outpouring of support for Massa after his Hungary incident again shows the human side of the sport.

    Cheers for your hard work in 2009, James – Happy Christmas to you and your readers.

    1. Nick Thornton says:

      hey number three, the link doesnt work!
      can you find me it again please?1 really want to see it :)
      thanks

      1. Aaron James says:

        Nick- the links incorporated the bracket. Remove the bracket at the end of the URL and your sorted.

  32. My top five moments of the year are:

    1. Jenson Button’s championship-deciding win in Brazil. With Button’s lead having narrowed over the summer, he needed a strong finish in order to seal his victory. In this race he pulled out all the stops with some masterly passing manouevres, and showed that he was not just a champion but a worthy champion.

    2. Giancarlo Fisichella’s 2nd place at Spa for Force India. Fisichella delivered the kind of performance that smaller teams hope for from their more experienced drivers. It showed him at his best and put Force India on the map.

    3. Jenson Button’s run to the podium in Monaco. By now, Brawn appeared to be running away with the championship, but just in case their victories were becoming metronomic Button broke the spell by parking in the wrong place. Consequently, the principality’s royal family had to wait whilst Button ran – fully helmeted – up the main straight to the podium. This brought a welcome moment of light relief and humanity to this most technical of sports.

    4. Mark Webber’s first ever win, at the German Grand Prix. Despite great promise, Mark Webber seems to have been dogged by the worst luck (most notably, breaking his leg in a cycle accident the previous winter). In this race, despite incurring a drive-through penalty, Webber drove superbly to victory, demonstrating why he is so highly-rated.

    5. Jenson Button’s win at the opening race in Australia. This victory set the tone for everything that was to follow, as the Brawn team – only just resurrected from the ashes of Honda – established themselves as the team to beat.

  33. Adam Taylor says:

    1, Jenson Button claiming his first win as the newly formed Brawn GP, which would lead to a championship.
    2, Brawn GP being rescued after Honda pulled out. This would also include the BMW and Renault operations.
    3, Force India claims maiden pole and podium at Spa.
    4, Mark Webbers amazing drive at the German Grand Prix. Not only grabbing pole and winning by 9 seconds from team mate Seb Vettel but also having to recover from a drive through penalty.
    5, Silverstone reclaims contract for the next 17 years

  34. paxdog 57 says:

    1. Brawn wins Australia – the Cinderella story begins
    2. Vettel wins Silverstone – a battle for the championship
    3. Massa injured in Hungary – the beginning of a Michael comeback, the shifting of drivers for 2010
    4. BMW announces to quit F1 – the fallout of the manufacturers despite restrictive budgets in 2010
    5. Piquetgate – the end of a great team and its leaders Flavio and Pat

  35. graham says:

    The top moment was when FOTA announced that it was going to form a breakaway series. The fans at Silverstone overwhelmingly supported it with banners in the stands saying “FOTA Rules” etc.

    The low point was when FOTA caved in. With the manufacturers now fleeing, F1 will become a spec racer series of privateer teams that havn’t the means to resist the bullying of FOM or the FIA. With negligible innovation featured F1 will be eclipsed by LMP in terms of being the “pinnacle of motorsports” in a matter of three years or less. Where the manufacturers go to will always be the pinnacle. Where the heavyweights do battle will always eclipse any privateer series.

    F1 RIP. Howett and Monty should have never capitulated.

  36. David says:

    1. Brawn GP being so quick out of the box in their first test especially as the bookies had them as something like 400-1 to be champions

    2. Jenson’s interview with the BBC in the garage as it felt like I was in the middle of the action

    3. Jake Humphrey’s interview with Bernie in Singapore. 2 reasons being that Bernie made Jake feel a bit of a idiot and watching the cameraman trying to keep Jake and Bernie in the same frame

    4. Max Mosley promising to leave his post as all the good work he done over the last few years were starting to come undone with his budget cap plans

    5. The Belgian grand prix weekend. The sheer shock of seeing Fisi getting pole and second on sheer pace

  37. Pat says:

    1. Button doing a “Hamilton” on Hamilton at beginning of Lap 2 in Bahrain – Class move negating the the KERS advantage of the McLaren along the Kilometre + straight with clever slip streaming and audacious later braking into turn 1 – the opening shot in the mind games of Hamilton v Button (Button 1-0 Hamilton). :)

    2. Button overtaking Grossjean at Interlago Brazil starting at Turn 3 and finishing at Turn 8 including a “Balls Out” move around the outside of Grossjean round the outside of the very fast Ferra Durra – what made this even more special was that Button was battling for the Championship at the time & under immense pressure. :)

    3. Monza – Hamilton chasing down Button at a fast rate of knots but running out of talent/ intelligence and putting it into the wall – whilst Button maintained his smooth, precise and measured approach despite the pressure from Hamilton to take second place. (Button 2-0 Hamilton):)

    4. Button doing the victory run from Parc Ferme along the home straight at Monaco after an inch perfect faultless race at Monaco – the track that sorts the Champions from the rest – pure theatre that could not have been scripted better :)

    5. Not sure if all this went out on the International Feed on TV so apologies to overseas readers if you didn’t see this but – Button singing the Queen Hit “WE are the Champions” immediately after crossing the line at Interlagos to WIN THE 2009 FORMULA ONE WORLD DRIVERS CHAMPIONSHIP – with emphasis on the “WE” – great presence of mind and a truly gentlemanly & obviously heartfelt gesture to the TEAM at a time when he had just achieved his own 21 year dream / objective. On top of this seeing Ross Brawn in tears on Pit Wall and all the coverage on the BBC from inside the Brawn garage at the end of the race really sealed a great day for F1 in an otherwise at times PR disaster of a year.

    P.S. Yes I’m a Button fan and have been an F1 fan since 1978 when the Indy Cars came to Silverstone (weirdly) – And I think Button will have the edge over Hamilton next year :)

    1. Pat says:

      My Number 1 moment of the “off season” has been Hamilton throwing down the Gauntlet straight after Jenson winning the title by proclaiming that he is still the best and Jenson is only borrowing his title – then Jenson picking it straight up and proverbially slapping it around Hamilton’s face by turning up in Hamilton’s backyard (McLaren HQ) while he’s off sunning himself somewhere & taking up the challenge by signing for the team for 2010 – reminds me of a couple of fighters at the weigh-in for a title unification fight :)

    2. Craig says:

      Button 0 – Hamilton 2

      If you watched tonights Top Gear ;-)

      1. Pat says:

        I did :)

        Fortunately it’s not where it matters…. If it did someone should sign The Stig for F1 next year the bookie would close their books now ! :)

  38. Hans joergen Stroem says:

    kimis win at Spa, is for me the highlight of the F1 year 2009.
    the real racer as he is, demonstrate real racer instinct in a mediocre car. he had KERS in that car, but that cannot take away his ability, as was also shown in 2005 at Suzuka against the same driver he fought against at spa 09.

  39. Steve W says:

    1. Brawn GP turning up at Barcelona group test in March and blowing the doors off the opposition. A few teams had to adjust their goals for the season that day!

    2. Fisichella’s shock pole position at Spa – in the dry! Another great underdog story from 2009 seeing Force India leap from the back to the front with some big performance upgrades! Some people couldn’t understand how a Force India could be sitting on pole, with the absurd suggestion that they had been given better tyres than some of the opposition!

    3. Brazilian Grand Prix – a spectacular race from start to finish, with incidents, arguments, fires and lots of overtaking, and capped off with Button and Brawn GP being crowned champions – fantastic!

    4. Hamilton’s win in Hungary – There were a few great Hamilton moments from the year, as he often put the 2009 McLaren in places it didn’t really deserve to be. The Hungary win was probably the most memorable, as it was the first win from a car that most people had written off! Lewis had a sniff of victory, and grabbed it, totally dominating the race in the process. To see Hamilton and Martin Whitmarsh so happy on the podium after such anturbulent start to the year was fantastic, and also after some horrible times the previous day when everyone’s thoughts had been with Felipe Massa.

    5. Vettels total domination at Silverstone. It turned out to be a very significant moment in the season. It was Red Bull’s and Vettel’s first dry weather win, and marked the turning point of the season as the Red Bull was the fastest car of the second half of the season, after Brawn’s domination early on.

  40. Tom says:

    The moment Michael Schumacher’s comeback possibility was announced, without doubt the most talked-about story this year. So many fans got their hopes up.

    Mark Webber getting his first win – well deserved victory, at Silverstone no less. especially commendable after his cycling accident.

    Kimi Raikkonen once again wins at Spa in a fierce battle with Fisichella, one of the best races of the year.

    Brazilian GP – qualifying and race – the championship leaders ending up at the back of the grid made way for a fascinating GP, including Kobayashi’s exciting style. Jenson sealing the championship.

    Barrichello, the man nobody thought would again win a grand prix, claiming a victory at the European GP. So emotional, he was overwhelmed with happiness

  41. Tarek says:

    In the following order, here are my top five:
    1- Ross Brawn crying on television at Interlagos: After all the success in his career, winning two championships with his own team was the crowning achievement, and that was clear to see in his emotional display after the race, one which I’m sure touched the entire F1 community of fans.
    2- Jenson Button’s driving (and overtaking) in Interlagos: A fitting way to win the WDC. No more needs to be said.
    3- The near-confirmation of a Schumi comeback: The utterly mouth-watering prospect of Michael back in a competitive car racing against the likes of Hamilton, Alonso, and Vettel hardly needs explaining.
    4- Sebastian Vettel’s victory in China: The drive of the season for me. After Monza 2008, this GP established Vettel as the new F1 wet-weather master.
    5- Jenson Button signing for McLaren: Whoever you think will come out on top in the Lewis vs. Jenson battle next season, you’ve got to respect Button for his decision. Firstly because he will try to prove to himself (and the world) just how good a driver he is by racing against one of the world’s best. And second, because his decision was based purely on racing; he could have stayed at Mercedes for more money.

  42. N Smith says:

    1. Mark Webber’s first win

    I’m not exactly a Webber fan but I do admire his comeback from injury this year and that was a heck of a drive in Germany – he dominated – and it was the best post-race radio transmission ever: sheer unadulterated joy!

    2. Jenson Button wins the championship

    No real explanation needed – but very similar to that above.

    3. Rubens takes a popular victory in Valencia

    A very popular victory, very touching to see everyone applauding in the pit lane and, just like Webber’s, it was a fantastic drive, his best of the year.

    4. Jenson’s ‘run’ in Monaco

    A fitting celebration which got all the supporters involved – it should become tradition – like drinking milk at Indy!

    5. Kimi: king of Spa, wins again

    A great win, overlooked in all the Fisichella hyperbole – we found out just how well he had done once we saw Fisi in the same car at the following race. Like everyone else above, he earned his win.

  43. Mercy says:

    5. Heikki overtaking Fisi straight out of the pits! Caught Fisi napping!

    4. M. Webber’s long overdue first win.

    3. L. Hamilton’s first win of the season.

    2. The Brazilian GP. So many good points, L. Hamilton from 16th to 3rd. J. Button carving up the field.

    1. Brawn’s first GP and a 1-2 in Australia!

  44. AndyFov says:

    I’ll probably read other submissions and subsequently realise these aren’t my top 5 moments at all, but the first which come to mind are:

    1. Button finally securing the WDC crown in Brazil. He’d been supreme in that race and his moment of victory was unforgettable.

    2. Webber’s maiden victory in the German GP. Given the bike crash he’d suffered previously, and in spite of growing public perception that Vettel is Red Bull’s better driver I was so pleased to see him win. He seems like a really nice guy too.

    3. Not a moment as such, but I found the whole Crashgate story unfolding compelling. FIA leaks, the Piquets Vs Flav – it’s not F1′s finest moment, but so far as _gates go it was one of the more rivetting ones.

    4. Fisc wins on merit for Force India in Spa. Shame for him that he’ll be remembered more for his lacklustre drives for Ferrari. It’s good for sport to see underdogs have their odd moment of glory.

    5. Again, not a moment as such, more a series of moments, but being drip-fed news of Massa’s miracle recovery has to be included in this list. He’s lucky to be alive let alone fit to race in 2010.

  45. Curro says:

    #1 Pre-podium scenes in Melbourne, the realisation of an incredible turnaround and the prospect for an incredible year

    #2 Seconds before the re-start at Spa, knowing exactly how and where Kimi was going to pass Fisi, thanks to KERS

    #3 Hamilton at the Nurburgring, upbeat despite an awful race in the knowledge he would be winning races soon with the updated McLaren

    #4 Mosley forcing Ron Dennis out of F1, then accepting defeat in the FIA-FOTA war and announcing he would not be running for re-election, then getting Briatore’s head as a farewell trophy

    #5 Red Bull domination at Silverstone, a reminder of Adrian Newey’s genius and two fantastic drives from Vettel and Webber

  46. Rob says:

    1. Fisichella’s Pole position at Spa is my favourite memory of 2009 because, absoloutley nobody expected it.

    2. Hamilton’s battle with Alonso for 16th at Silverstone was brilliant, two world champions fighting over a place for no points. I also loved Hamilton doing donuts for the fans at the end of the race aswell.

    3. Barrichello’s win in Valencia was probably the most popular win in a long time, it was great to see Rubens back on the top step.

    4. Kamui Kobayashi’s battle with Button at Interlagos was great because he wasn’t scared to defend his position and you could tell how much it meant to Jenson when he got past.

    5. Ferrari giving Luca Badoer his chance to race a Ferrari after testing for them for 10 years was good to see, a nice change from the ruthless team that used to be.

  47. Misu says:

    1. Felipe Massa survived the accident on the Hungaroring and showed remarkable hardness (mentally) during his recovery.
    2. The overpolitised days seem to be over with many controversial figures disappeared and outsiders got involved (Chad Hurley, Richard Branson, Gerrard Lopez)
    3. F1 started to realise the neccessity of acting together to survive, this might lead to an improved era of the sport (in relaton with the 2nd point).
    4. The field became more balanced than ever, the human factor was pretty decisive despite the diffuser-gate and other problems.
    5. The two main competitors have their own charme: it ‘had to be’ Ross Brawn, who won the championship after rescuing the team that became his for a year and Sebastian Vettel was the guy, who was able to remind us sometimes to a driver, whose imput has been really missing since he disappeared.

  48. zulus says:

    Kamui raised my eyebrows twice, that whas real relief. Sorry, neither Button nor Vettel did impress me on any 2009 event

  49. raffamuffin says:

    Lewis v. Alonso at Silverstone! And Lewis doing donuts at club corner!! Pukka :)

  50. Jonathan says:

    Here’s my list:

    1) Brawn GP / Button – Australia. After being so close to going out of business, they demonstrated that they had something very much worth saving, showing that the competitiveness shown in testing was very real.

    3) Red Bull – Following up their good performance at Silverstone with a 1-2 finish at the Nürburgring, they showed that Brawn most definitely had a fight on their hands for the championships.

    3) McLaren / Hamilton – After finishing 16th in their home GP, they showed promise in Germany, although thwarted by a puncture for Hamilton, and then came a dramatic return to form, winning in Hungary.

    4) Force India / Fisichella – Spa-Francorchamps. Their best result to date, with a performance worthy of a win – only prevented due to the safety car and the Ferrari passing with the aid of KERS.

    5) Kobayashi’s debut – although many new drivers struggled with the lack of testing allowed, Kobayashi proved that it was possible to jump straight in and perform well, earning himself a drive for 2010 with Sauber.

  51. Radoye says:

    1. “Crashgate” – unfortunately politics once again stole the limelight.

    2. Brawn GP takes it all – the only GP team to achieve 100% success rate taking both WDC and WCC in every year of participation in F1. Kudos to them!

    3. Force India on pole at Spa – shows how tight is the field nowadays. Hopefully the trend continues in the future.

    4. Malaysia GP being rained out – stupid political decision to move the start time resulting in a fiasco of near-Indy2005 proportions.

    5. The bizarre crashfest at Suzuka qualis – and the lack of a contingency plan for such situations resulting in a starting grid pretty much chosen at random by the FIA stewards.

  52. Chris G says:

    In no particular order:

    1. Vettel at Silverstone. It was the first time we had seen just how good he can be if it is dry and he has a clear track in front of him. He was awesome in the first stint.

    2. Kobayashi. Refreshing to see a new driver really go for it in a racing sense. Recently only Hamilton and Rosberg have impressed me so much in their first few races.

    3. As scruffy as it ended up, Kubica attempting to overtake Vettel on the penultimate lap in Australia. Showed that drivers ARE there to race until the end.

    4. Button in the first half of the season. He wasn’t particularly impressive in the second half of the season, but his driving was sublime in the first half.

    5. The battle between Alonso and Hamilton at Silverstone. Good to see that even though (at the time) they were both in terrible cars, neither wanted to let the other get too far away. That’s what F1 is about, and always will be, regardless of the point system.

  53. Craig says:

    1) Lewis doing Donuts at the end of the British GP; came no where but gave what he could to the crowd

    2) Jenson parking his car in the wrong place in Monaco and legging it to the podium

    3) Jensons drive in Brazil from start to finish

    4) Webber winning in Germany, long over due and fully deserved

    5) Bye Bye Max, time for change

  54. Tomek says:

    Hard to decide on particular order, but here’s my top 5 (and by top I believe you do not only mean the best, but also the most influential etc.)

    1. Complete surprise in terms of Brawn GP performance during first pre-season test, but especially later, in Australia. Before they did their first mile I thought – no no, they can compete with Force India, at best. Results are well known. My reaction? I had to collect my chin from my floor, literally. At the same time I was wondering how “fantastic” atmosphere must be in Tokio in Honda’s offices when they watched their ex-team clinching the first win in the first start of the 2009 season. Stunning.

    2. Red Bull team and Chinese 1-2 in particular. They presented a quite good performance from the very beginning but achieving a 1-2 in this rainy race, breaking Brawn’s hegemony by terrific outperformance (third J. Button was over 40 seconds behind) is worth remembering. And the best was that it was only a start, a foretaste of what’s to come.

    3. Brazilian GP – in my opinion the best race of the season. Had all factors that make race unforgettable. SC, overtaking, and J. Button finally making it. In what a style!

    4. I had a really big problem whether position number 4 should really be under this number or maybe it should be switched with position 5. But, ultimately, I decided Force India comes first. Especially its performance in Spa and Fisi’s in particular. Who would foresee at the end of March that this season one of FI’s cars would take pole, because I wouldn’t. It totally surpassed my expectations. Plus it gave another swing in terms of balance of powers in the second part of the season. That means that it has to be placed in my personal top five.

    5. Crashgate and Lewis Hamilton. Yes, it was a shameful moment. I am not the one to judge LH but I would like to point on other issue, directly connected with what occured in Australia. The LH’s attitude from then on. Pure focus on racing. That was delightful. Lewis presented himself in this season as a really grown up and responsible driver. He did fantastic job out there. 2 wins (could have been at least one more but, what we obviously know, it wasn’t Lewis’s fault), 4 poles. It was the best way to make people forget about Australia’s events. And he did it. Marvellously.

    I hope the volume of my reasons behind each position does not qualify under term “War and Peace”. Merry Christmas!

    1. Tomek says:

      by no. 5 I meant of course Liegate not Crashgate. From the whole explanation its obvious it was a mistake. Thought about something else and wrote something different.

  55. Simon says:

    My Top Five Moments of the Year

    1. kimi overtaking fisi at eau rouge.
    2. massa driving an f1 car again after crash.
    3. barachello’s strategy to win at valencia.
    4. kobayashi fearlessly holding button off at brazil.
    5. the aftermath of the trulli sutil crash at brazil.

  56. K.K. says:

    1. Massas crash in Hungarian GP and most important, he survived it.
    2. Brawn GP having 1-2 in 1st race in Australia, who saw that coming?
    3. Fisichella nearly winning a race with Force India in Spa. Force India had never had any points and now they almost won a race.
    4. Rookie Kamui Kobayashi overtaking new World Champion Jenson Button in Abu Dhabi.
    5. Buttons crazy overtaking manouvers in Brazil. Showed that he really deserved to be a Champion.

  57. Simon from Melbourne says:

    My Top Five For ’09

    5. Vettel Conquers The Rain In China.

    If there was any doubt Sebastian Vettel was an undoubted future superstar of Formula 1, any concerns were dashed in Shanghai. A performance of utter dominance and control, vaguely reminiscent of a certain fellow German in his grasp of wet conditions.

    4. Farce In Malaysia.

    For a sport which prides itself for operating on the cutting edge, the sheer farce surrounding the stop start round at Sepang is an undoubted highlight for sheer ludicrousness. Kimi Raikkonen’s decision to vacate his car, return to the garage, get changed and eat an ice cream, while the Ferrari press officer claimed the Finn would still race if the conditions cleared was quite surreal.

    3. Brawn GP stuns world at Albert Park

    Only months before the opening race of the season at Albert Park, the majority of F1 speculation surrounded the seemingly free falling career of Jenson Button and whether his time in the sport had come to an end. Once Britain’s great new hope, Button had spectacularly failed to reach the great heights expected, and was simply cast aside as one of the sport’s also rans. But Button’s fortunes appeared set for a stunning reversal after the BGP001 turned heads at testing, displaying amazing speed and grip. The pace then translated to Melbourne, where Button led home Rubens Barrichello to help Brawn become the first team to score a 1-2 finish on debut. Curiously, the last team to achieve such a feat, Mercedes, later purchased the team.

    2. Jenson Button’s sterling World Championship drive at Interlagos.

    The Brit overcame the cries of the doubters to produce a performance truly worthy of a champion, full of dare, brawn and incisiveness. His battle with emerging star Kamui Kobayashi provided a few tense moments, but Button’s sheer relief at winning motorsport’s ultimate prize was plain to see.

    1. Mark Webber Finally Wins At Nurburgring.

    Seven years, four teams and 132 race starts, Mark Webber’s journey to that fateful day in Germany was one fraught with false dawns, unfulfilled expectations and awful bouts of luck. But in one afternoon, the Australian produced a performance for the ages to overcome a drive through penalty and opening corner clash to claim the most emotionally charged victory of the season. His response on team radio following the race said it all, and was echoed by his fans around the world.

  58. Well I will post mine in backward order to keep You waiting! :)

    5. Luca Badoer stepping in for Felipe Massa in Ferrari. You know, I don’t really care if Badoer was fast or not. It was great to see a long time, trusty servant who finally gets his reward for all there years of hard, but also ungrateful work everyone was benefiting with.

    4. Barrichello’s pole in Brazil. And Jock Clear’s radio shouting: “THATS P1 IN BRAZIL, BUTTON P14, VETTEL P17, WHERE ARE YOU NOW RUBENS?!” – I really wanted him to win it.

    3. Fisi vs. Raikkonen duel at Spa. May not be as enjoyable for everyone like, for example, Button vs. Kobayashi ones, but for connoisseurs – that was the cream of the crop of racing. Two extremely fast, mistakeless drivers trading great laptimes one by one through every race – want more!

    2. Button’s pass on Vettel in Turkey. From my point of view, the one very defining his world championship title. So cold blodded, planned and perfect move.

    1. Rubens Barrichello’s win in Valencia. Again with sparkling role from Jock Clear and his comments: “Come on now Rubens, this is Your qualifying lap!”. Indeed it was. For me, this was the most impressive drive of the season.

  59. James W says:

    1) Jenson Button becoming world champion. Been so long in the waiting and thoroughly deserved

    2) The racing in Malaysia. Visually, stunning, with the spray coming off the cars. What little racing there was in the dry was also brilliant. Can’t forget Felipe Baby either!

    3) Learning that Felipe Massa was a) Ok after the crash, and b) able to race next season

    4) A different pecking order compared with the last 10-15 years. Even for just one season, it was great to have different teams at the top, and such a closely fought season amongst all the teams.

    5) Grosjean having his accident at “Piquet Corner”. That was a little ironic and rather hilarious, right?!

  60. Ed H says:

    1: Barrichello whines in Germany, then Wins at Valencia and Monza. The fact that after 17 years he is still going is testament to the fact that you should never give up. He wasn’t given the same chance as Jenson, because he stole his setup. Rubens always manages to smile, even when it isn’t going his way.
    2: Brawn winning the first race of the season, very unusual start to the season, and a great overall race as well.
    3: Fisi getting pole in Spa. Didn’t see it coming, and it made a thriller of a race.
    4: FOTA standing up for itself. For too long have Bernie and Max had their unrelenting grip on what happens in F1. FOTA were right to stand-up and try to go it alone, F1 should be somewhere in North America.

    1. Ed H says:

      Sorry, I ran out of time and forgot to mention my 5th choice, which is:

      5: Probably “Felipe Baby, Stay cool!” and the resulting Video I made out of it: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e38AfOx-U84

      I owe Rob Smedley. Big time.

      However, despite these good moments, there weren’t enough wet races in the season for it to be better than last year, Overtaking was made harder because of the huge front wing, and my Respect for Button has decreased as the season went on.

  61. Adam says:

    1. Brawn One-Two Australia – A remarkable turn around from the brink of non-existence to a remarkable result and early season dominance.

    2. Hamilton’s Comeback – Victory at Hungary was just a remarkable comeback from a car that quite clearly wasn’t anything special, battle with Webber was excellent.

    3. Button’s half lap of Monaco on foot – Won the Monaco GP and parked in the wrong place, gave us one of the most memorable moments of the season.

    4. Webber’s First Win – The amount of relief heard over the team radio was incredible, blew the field away and totally deserved first win.

    5. Kobayashi’s Debut – An entertaining debut from a driver that clearly will prove to be entertaining in the future, some questionable moves but provided some quality racing.

  62. KerbRider says:

    1. Webbers 1st victory in Germany – Has there ever been a greater outpouring of emotion over pit-car radio? (only time F1 has made me shed a tear)
    2. Brawns performance at Albert Park – it set the season up to be quite unique
    3. Button V Webber last laps in Abu Dhabi – best on track battle for years. Fair, hard foght and exhilerating
    4. Michaels expected return in Valencia – The F1 world was back on the front pages world wide.
    5. Button and Vettels drives in Brazil – Both superb under immense pressure

  63. Kevin Brock says:

    5: Fisi gets an unexpected but deserved pole in Spa.

    4: Jenson gets lost on way to casino, sorry, podium in Monaco.

    3: Brawn 1-2 in their first race after all the winter trials and tribulations.

    2: “Felipe baby” in Malaysia when screaming out for a clear visor.

    1: Confirmation of a British Grand Prix in 2010. They could race around the streets of Wigan for all I care, as long as there is a race!

  64. CRT says:

    Max leaving.
    Flavio leaving.
    Toyota leaving.
    Brazil GP
    Webber’s win

  65. Mario says:

    I can’t recall a thing. I’m living the new season already.

  66. Nick Thornton says:

    1 – Webbers win in germany – his radio cry was spine-chilling, pure emotion
    2 – First few laps of Brazil, simply stunning action
    3 – Brawns first 1-2 in australia, a fairy tale story
    4 – Raikkonen Fisichella battle at Spa was an absolute joy to watch
    5 – Jenson parking his brawn in the wrong place at monaco and having to do a lap of honour which was brilliant!

  67. Pablo Rossi says:

    Not the most entertaining season but on reflection some little gems. Here they are:

    1. Kimi’s win at Spa – The master of the Belgian GP showed his quality in a truly terrible car, passing and holding off the surprisingly fast Force India of Fisi. NB, Fisi in a Ferrari showed people just how hard that car was to drive despite it being increasingly overlooked!

    2. Jenson’s Brazilian GP – A Champions drive despite rarely showing a championship winning ability. Vindicated his title with a sublime performance that made doubters feel slightly less aggrieved(argumentative – me included) about Jenson holding the crown.

    3. Australian GP in general – Not because it was a fantastic race but rather because of both the interesting ‘Liegate’ and Brawn GP’s superior pace/car and maiden victory.

    4. Kamui Kobayashi (Brazil & Abu Dhabi) – Showed everyone that if your good enough, your good enough! All the excuses of the other rookies and those that both enabled and perpetuated the myth of ‘lack of testing’ being blamed was shown up for what it was/is….nonsense. All down to his 2 superb drives, Abu Dhabi in particular.

    5. Kimi’s Ice Cream & A Coke (Malaysia) – Has to be there for me because it was a huge talking point for both sides of the argument. To me it was humorous and typical Kimi, to others, disrespectful and typical Kimi. Kimi probably knew that with whinging Webber on the warpath, the race was not going to be restarted!

    Other notable mentions go to the:
    - ‘Crashgate’ scandal, omitted because it wasn’t really a moment but a revelation
    - Webber’s maiden victory in Germany
    - Hungarian GP, because the best were on form including Lewis’s first victory after a hard season’s slog, Kimi and Alonso putting in strong performaces & the unfortunate injury to Massa adding to the attention grabbing intrigue.

    1. melonfarmer says:

      Re. Kimi’s coke and ice cream: wasn’t there a failure with the KERS so he was out whatever happened? Seems like it was the perfect opportunity for the anti-Kimi campaign to gain momentum. Like KERS’ failure, the constant chipping away at Kimi was one of the sore points of the year.

      Pleased to see the back of Flavio, but I fear the Gravity management scheme will see the same “sign with us or lose the drive” type of operation. Ho Ping Tung an F1 driver based on being 15s/lap slower than anyone else? No way!

  68. Dazza says:

    1 The first test in Barca when the Brawns were so much quicker than anyone else.

    2 The Brawn 1-2 in Australia.

    3 Kobayashi giving it his all and keeping Jens behind with a no fear drive.

    4 Vettel’s Silverstone weekend when he showed everyone what he was about.

    5 Fisi at Spa, what a weekend worried the hell out of Ferrari ! Robbed of the top spot by Kers
    and yet another safety car.

  69. Phul says:

    1. Button being 0.7 secs faster than anyone else at Brawns first winter test, considering other teams had already been testing for two months. Wow.

    2. Malaysian GP stopped half through due to monsoon, even though it was well known it always rains there during the early evening someone decided to hold the GP at that time. Typical F1 mess up.

    3. Ferrari deciding there was no one better to stand in for Massa than Luca Badoer who duly qualified last at valencia, a first for Ferrari!

    4. Button on the radio “How can our car be so bad at the moment?” Perfectly illustrates his mid season struggle.

    5. Button parking in the wrong place at end of Monaco GP and jogging down pit straight!!!

  70. Kyle says:

    1) Fisi on Spa pole in the Force India.
    This is the team that had yet to score a point in F1 and were marked out as perennial backmarkers, and suddenly – without any prior indication they could do it – the Force India was sitting on the front row of the Spa grid. Arguably he deserved to go on to win the race, given Raikkonen’s first-corner tactics.

    2) The entire Australian Grand Prix.
    Brawn putting the suggestions of underweight test running truly to bed, Button’s supremacy, Hamilton’s fight-back from 18th on the grid, Kubica’s ill-fated pursuit of Vettel and Barrichello’s totally unstraightforward drive from 2nd on the grid to 2nd on the podium. Not to mention the simply fairytale result.

    3) Webber’s win in Germany.
    What a stunning performance to see off the field despite a potentially crippling drive-through. Absolutely deserved after years of hard luck stories and the incredible outpouring of emotion after the race showed how much it meant to him.

    4) FOTA dream of the stars.
    Maybe it was an unrealistic dream given the recession hitting the manufacturer teams. But in terms of sheer defiance and audacity, FOTA’s announcement on 19th June that they would form a breakaway series and attempt to finally break the stranglehold of Max and Bernie was something to behold. The promise of a transparently-governed series, the return of classic tracks like Montreal, Indy and Imola and the pledge of affordable ticket prices had every F1 fan’s attention.

    5) Button parking in the wrong place after winning at Monaco.
    He didn’t put a foot wrong all race long in Monte Carlo, but forgot the Monegasque podium protocol and found himself having to jog the length of the pit straight in order to meet Prince Albert.

    Honourable mentions: Brazilian GP weekend, Kamui Kobayashi, Webber vs Button @ Abu Dhabi, Hamilton vs Alonso @ Silverstone.

  71. AndoNeo says:

    1. Webbers win in Germany. He’s always amazed with his achievements in lesser cars. It was only a matter of time in the 09 Red Bull. Vettel is special for sure but Webber hasn’t been eclipsed just yet.

    2. Brawn buy out. No poem is as poetic as the amazing turn of fortune that team went through.

    3. Schumacher comeback. I relished the idea of him coming back into a much changed landscape. Was never a fan so it would please me to see his reputation tested in the new F1 era.

    4. Red Bull 1-2 in China. The fightback begins.

    5. Webbers win in Brazil. Aussie patriotism gets the best of me sometimes.

  72. Pat says:

    Reading on another site the following……

    “Button – Drive it like you own it,
    Hamilton – Drive it like you nicked it ”

    ……..really cracked me up ! :)

    1. Pablo Rossi says:

      Love it…so true!!!
      Only time will tell, counting down the days….

  73. BiggusJimmus says:

    1. K Raikkonen and the ice lolly incident.
    2. J Button swearing like he likes it.
    3. Seeing the back of N Piquet jnr.
    4. F Alonso to Ferrari.
    5. McLaren development effort.

  74. Criscles says:

    1. Brawn GP winning the Constructors and Drivers championships in their inaugural year.

    2. Vettel at Silverstone. Mastery.

    3. The unification of FOTA and their Sword of Damocles FIA split threats. MASSIVE.

    4. Webber win at Nurburgring.

    5. Abu Dhabi Circuit Twilight Race – Fantastic TV

  75. kristian says:

    1 – Button parking his car in the wrong spot after winning Monaco and running down the pit straight to receive the trophy. It’s one of those sporting moments that TV execs are always trying to script but only look genuine when they are, genuine.

    2 – Mosley being vindicated that manufacturers are fair weather competitors. Love him or hate him, he was adamant that private teams are the only teams that will stick through thick or thin. Manufacturers were ruining the sport, farewell.

    3 – Fisichella chasing Raikkonen to the flag in Belgium. Two drivers took cars that did not belong at the front of a grand prix and put them there, nose to tail, around the most immaculate circuit in use today for an hour and a half.

    4 – Webber’s car to pit radio after his first win. It summed up his character in a few seconds; off-season injury, perennial bad luck and a complete team player.

    5 – Massa’s accident/crash/injury/recovery. That someone could headbutt a spring at racing speed, crash unconscious head-on into a wall and live to tell the tale shows the unstoppable march of technology in F1.

  76. Dale says:

    Without doubt
    No 1 has to be the simply unheard of McLaren fightback throughout the season. I challenge ANY F1 fan to name a similar case, what McLaren did (without normal testing was almost unbelievable and anyone with a real insight into F1 knows this).
    2) Force India being fastest car on the track and only just missing out on their first win.
    3) buttons race in Brazil and him becoming F1 champion
    4) Hamilton over cooking it on the last lap when racing Button, this was true F1 racing at its absolute best where he was on the edge lap after lap and not settling for 3rd as he could have and to be honest all other drivers currently in F1 would – a Senaesk piece of entertainment.
    5) The end of Max Mosley, here’s hoping for a bright future.

    I can’t see how anything can beat what McLaren as a team did this year, amazing.

  77. Rahul Seth says:

    My top 5 moments counting down:

    5) Vettel’s pole lap in China – Having the ability to nail his Q2 & Q3 times on one flying lap in each session was extraordinary.

    4) Fisi’s pole in Spa – A stunning drive and great to see the Force India squad develop a fantastic car in low downforce trim.

    3) McLaren’s comeback – McLaren in pre-season form was horrendous and the team appeared to be the slowest out there. They made considerable gains over year, which was shown at the German GP and developed into one of the fastest, if not the fastest teams out there.

    2) Webber’s 1st GP win – It’s more the style of the win, then the drive itself. Coming back from those injuries sustained in Tasmania, Mark showed he was a true Aussie as he never gave up and managed to reach the top step of the podium.

    1) Brawn GP 1-2 in Australia – For a team who looked like they might never make it to the grid, this was a dominant result that signalled they were going to be world champions this year. Its been a fantastic result for them and for F1.

  78. Crid [CridComment @ gmail] says:

    Dear Blogger James Allen:

    This blog post is a work of genius. Reading these lists (a short number of short entries) has been terrific fun, reminding me of several moments otherwise forgotten while getting a good fix on what your other readers think.

    Nicely done (all)!

  79. Pierre says:

    1/ The whole crashgate. Everybody suspected it (except Alonso), but no one could talk, untill Briatore made his hara-kiri by laying Piquet Jr off. So enormous, but so much amateurish after reading the full FIA transcriptions…

    2/ The first Brawn’s test when it immediatly became obvious the car was going to win both championships despite Honda withdrawal and the late Mercedes engine installation, and so would make one of its two drivers a very happy man 9 months later… Reminded me the great MP4/4 which hit the track a very few weeks before the first GP in Brazil. Remember Ron announcing “We’ll try to win all the races of the season”.

    3/ Raikkonen out of F1. A real great loss for F1.

    4/ Schumacher’s comeback.

    5/ FOTA’s own series. I still do not know if they were only bluffing or not.

    Sorry no racing moments, it’s been a very boring year except Raikkonen’s win/drive, Kobayashi’s debuts and Hamilton’s drive in several occasions including Italy and Hungary.

  80. Gareth Davies says:

    1. Jenson crossing the finishing line in Australia.
    2. Hamilton vs Alonso at Silverstone. Very underrated but awesome racing.
    3. Kimi vs Fisi at Spa. Both sensational drives but more so from Kimi as the F60 was a pig of a car.
    4. Jenson running in Monaco. Had such a good laugh and I’ve not seen anything like it.
    5. Felipe Massa’s recovery. First hand proof of how safe F1 is compared to pasttimes.

    2009 was the best season for a very long time – roll on 2010 and JA on F1!!

  81. monktonnik says:

    1. Brazilian GP

    Apart from a healthy slice of luck with accidents and Rubens’ puncture, Button drove that race to win the championship. Even if he had failed that would have been an impressive drive by anyone’s standards. I have only cried 3 times as a grown man. Button has caused 2 of them and this was the most recent.

    2. Australian GP

    Finally realising that all the specualtion was well founded and that the Brawn cars were as good as everyone thought they were.

    3. Monaco

    Jenson winning with a great drive and then parking in the wrong place meaning he had to sprint up the straight to the podium. It was a great moment to see a race winner enjoying the adulation of the crowd in a spontaneous and fun way. I actually think that this should be a new tradition.

    4. Fisi putting the Force India on Pole on pace alone. It was a great drive and nice to see the old Jordan Team continuing to slay giants.

    5. Singapore

    Grosjean crashing at turn 17 (exactly the same place that Piquet had his notorious accident) and the reaction of Bob Bell on the Pit Wall

  82. Mathew Shaw says:

    1) Hamilton’s win in Hungary. It was not the most fascinating race in F1 history, but it was a preliminary success in a genuinely interesting process in which McLaren turned a dog of a car into a winner. It was during this period in the season that McLaren seemed to be putting any little bit of aero on the car often at the last minute for Lewis to make the most from, (the BBC coverage made it seem as if the MP4-24 was at least 70% duct tape). It was a fitting victory after the unfulfilled promise that was the previous Grand Prix.

    2) The pre-season Barcelona test as it set the scene for what was to be a very unique season.

    3) Kobayashi showed that drivers in ’09 did not need to necessarily fall victim to the steep learning curve provided by the new generation of F1 cars. His drive in Brazil was a noteworthy moment/event and spectacle in itself, the highlights of which can still put a smile on a motorsport enthusiast’s face.

    5) Vettel’s win in China. The result was an overdue result for the Red Bull team which served to highlight Vettel’s wet weather calibre as well as Newey’s engineering pedigree.

    4) Button’s Monaco “100 yard dash”

    (The Massa/Smedley “Filipe baby” conversation deserves special mention)

  83. Quillan Rogers says:

    Mine would have to be as follows James:

    1. Brawn GP making the grid, after so much uncertainty over the winter. To have the best car on the grid (for a while at least) made it even better. I never thought it would happen, Iv’e been a supporter of the team since they were BAR.

    2. Jenson Button becoming world champion, the best thing that could have ever happened. I have followed Jenson all through his career and I never lost faith that he could do it.

    3. Timo Glock’s drive at Singapore. I know not many people would remember it, but I thought it was one of the great drives this year. It wasn’t fancy or anything like that, he just put his head down and drove a stunner of a race.

    4. New teams coming into Formula 1. I gotta say I am very excited about the new teams, I think they will ad a lot to the grid. I always loved the days when Formula 1 had 24 cars on the grid and we are going to go back to that next year, except it will be 26.

    5. Jenson’s drive at Brazil. People thought he was unworthy, well I am sure that this drive made people sit up and think. Just breathtaking at times, some of the passing moves he pulled off. It was as if he didn’t have a world title to fight for, a true champions drive.

  84. Mark says:

    1) Mark Webbers First Win & Celebration – Hospital bed to top step of the podium. Radio celebration and the champagne on the head. Brilliant.

    2) Brawns early season dominance – How a team can have such a performance gap is amazing.

    3) McLarens Development – Kudos where it is due, that was a pig and ended up a GP winner.

    4) Jensons drive in Brazil – He was on it.

    5) Red Bulls dominance in Silverstone – WHen that development package was rolled out we finally had another car that could take it to the Brawn.

  85. Chris Bird says:

    1 Button running to the podium in Monaco
    2 Webbers first win
    3 Kimi winning at Spa
    4 Button storming through the field in Brazil
    5 Hamilton doing donuts at Silverstone

  86. Tony G says:

    1. Brawn 1-2 in Melbourne that’s the stuff of fairytales
    2. Webber’s first win in Germany – great relief after so many years of trying and all despite what the stewards could throw at him
    3.Hamilton’s drive at Monza big charge that ended in tears but what a drive
    4.Fisichella’s pole at Spa – unbelievable
    5.Button’s clinching WDC in Brazil after gutsy drive

  87. Jameson says:

    1. Button finally earning the title of World Drivers Champion. I’ve been a fan since I first started watching F1 in 2003, and it’s great to see him on the first step of the podium.

    2. The intense race between Raikkonen and Fisichella at Spa. You could see how badly Fisichella wanted that win–he was not only chasing the Ferrari of Raikkonen but also the second seat at the team of his dreams. Raikkonen yet again proved his dominance of the true grand prix circuits.

    3. Button’s championship securing drive in Brazil. It was fantastic to see him come back to form in such a strong way!

    4. Vettel’s exceptional performance this year. Despite a few mistakes, and the precarious power-train, he proved what a great talent he will be. He pulled out a number of great races with little practice runs.

    5. Webber’s dominance at the Nurburgring. Not only did he win from pole, and managed to do so with a drive through penalty. It was the man’s first win, and it was a great moment.

    Runner-up. Kobayashi’s two grand prix races at the end of the year. He proved that a rookie can come in, drive an F1 car, and manage to impress just about everyone.

  88. LoudHoward says:

    1 – Mark Webbers weekend at Germany, great qualifying and majestic drive to his first victory.

    2 – First RBR 1-2 in China, great race from both drivers.

    3 – First 1-2 for Brawn, great story.

    4 – Fisi’s pole in Belgium, cool and bonkers thing to see.

    5 – Webbers retake of Alonso at Barcelona, didn’t expect that!

  89. Buck says:

    Since it was a crazy season with so many things going on off the track I’m going with most memorable moments, if not positive moments.

    1) Brawn goes 1-2 at Australia.
    After Brawn nearly being out of F1, this was an uplifting surprise (before all the off-track nonsense started).

    2)FOTA announces breakaway series. First big story away from the track. Were they really going to walk away from 60 years of F1 tradition?

    3)Crashgate. Huge scandal, would have been #2 but by then the world was already getting used to the insanity.

    4)Webber wins first race. Very popular, emotional victory.

    5)Kobayashi/Button duel. Rookie surprises veteran fighting tooth and nail to hang onto a championship he almost threw away.

  90. WebberWinsIn 200? says:

    1 Webber’s first win.
    As my name suggests it’s been a long wait.
    Webber’s dominance in Germany was my favourite moment, and his post race radio was one of the most honest celebrations I’ve ever heard.

    2 Brawn’s Championship.
    After most of us thought they wouldn’t even make the grid….WOW

    3 Flavio being brought undone.
    I’ve just never trusted a guy his age that wears speedo’s !

    4 Red Bull’s 1 2 in China.
    Supreme !

    5 Massa’s recovery.
    I really thought we were looking at another death in F1 that day.
    To see Felipe come through it all with no long lasting injuries was fantastic :)

  91. Rob says:

    1. Webber’s win in Germany – I’m an Australian and it was a long time coming.

    2. Brawn 1 – 2 in Australia – Simply amazing and out-of-the-blue.

    3. Kimi and Fisi @ Spa. A Force India nearly winning a race? Who’d have thought?

    4. Kobayashi on Button – Made me cheer and punch the air.

    5. Massa’s head spring – I feared the worst.

  92. Chad says:

    They are not the greatest moments but think these ones will stick in my memory of 2009 the longest;

    1) Brawn rising from the ashes in January, to surprising everyone in February testing, to blowing our minds at Melbourne in March!

    2) Massa’s injury, and the ensuing Schummi return saga.

    3) Webber’s maiden win.

    4) DiffuserGate, LieGate, Crashgate, Breakaway Series Gate, ElectionGate and the new teams selection process.

    5) KERS

  93. jw1980 says:

    1-British GP saved and staying at Silverstone. Tense times in the last couple of months. One minute it was looking promising, the next less so. This GP underpins my passion for the sport. Without a British GP my enthusiasm for the sport could have slowly ebbed away.
    2-Brawn saved. 18 car grid would not have been good. Good testing folowed by pole and a fantastic race in the Australian GP with a great result.
    3-Brazilian GP. A brilliant race which saw Button become the tenth different British F1 champion.
    4-Lewis Hamilton winning two grand prix. Leaving Silverstone this did not look possible but great drives in Hungary and Singapore and excellent to see his performances so critically acclaimed by such respected journalists.
    5-Must always keep an eye on the future and it looks good despite of some of the celebrated pullouts. A 26 car grid next year with two exciting new teams in Lotus and Virgin plus Bruno Senna but what about the front runners:-
    Hamilton versus Button versus Alonso versus Vettel versus (hopefully) Schumacher. Now that’s something to look forward to….

  94. Mark Connop says:

    1. Mark Webber’s impression of Klunk from Catch the Pigeon following his first win.

    That is all.

  95. 1) Brazil, for the fantastic racing and the great climax to the championship battle.
    2) Australia, for the mad race and the fact that we knew Brawn were serious then!
    3) Webber’s first win and victory screams over the radio after the German Grand Prix
    4) Jenson running to the podium after Monaco – what a victory lap!
    5) Ross Brawn crying on TV – for someone so guarded with his emotions, it personified the struggles of himself and the team in the last 12 months.

    Honourable mention: FOTA vs. the FIA – it really was War and Peace!

    No need to enter me into the competition though – I already have a signed copy of the book and I am enjoying it immensely. It is funny looking back with hindsight on some things that were said – James, you were really on the money over the stories well before they were confirmed as true!

  96. AndyB says:

    5. Brawn at Melbourne – When we all realised

    4. Fisichella’s being picked for Ferrari. He was so ‘appy.

    3. Kimi’s ice cream – we always knew he was cool.

    2. Finding out that Massa was going to be ok.

    1. The moment we heard that Michael Schumacher was coming back. (before it was taken away again)

  97. Baart says:

    1. Second win of Button in OZ
    2. Double diffusor issue on the start of the season
    3. F1 on the brink – FIA vs FOTA
    4. Crash gate
    5. Raikkonen vs Fisichella in Spa

  98. Caron says:

    1 Rubens winning his first race in 5 years in Valencia – an emotional moment for everyone. I still cry when I watch it.

    2 Brawn GP showing the world they’re there with 1-2 in Aus

    3 Raikkonnen’s win in Spa – showing he still had it

    4 Mark Webber getting the win he’d deserved for so long in Germany even after drive through

    5 Brawn GP winning constructors championship in Brazil and Jenson winning drivers’ title. Memorable for all usual reasons plus Ross’s tribute to the people they’d made redundant.

  99. Neil Williams says:

    5. Fisi taking pole at Spa on Merit
    4. Outpouring of affection for Rubens after his Valencia win
    3. Jenson’s ‘lap’ of honour after a sublime Monaco GP performance
    2. Brawn 1-2 in Australia showing no sand-bags used in pre-season Barcelona test and they were the real deal.
    1. Crashgate / Liegate / Gardengate

  100. david says:

    5. Grosjean putting in the wall at the turn 17 during FP1 at Singapore, almost identical to Piquet the year before. It came just after a particularly dark period for f1, Renault having been found guilty in the Crashgate Scandal and the irony of it was too good to be true (If they’d not sacked Piquet in favour of Grosjean, the story might have never broken). The camera cut to the Renault pit wall and it was great to see even they could see the funny side of it.

    4. Jarno Trulli’s race performance at Suzuka. I couldn’t believe it, transferred his qualifying pace into consistent race pace. Chased Hamilton all the way and got at the last stop. Possibly his best drive during his many seasons in f1.

    3. Vettel’s qualifying session in China, hardly any running in the morning, could only have one lap in each part of the session and he nailed it.

    2. The moment Schumacher announced he was coming back, and standing in for Massa. I know it didn’t happen in the end, but dear god, how exciting was it while it lasted.

    1. Brawn GP 1-2 in Australia. The absolute joy shown by Brawn, Button and Barrichello up on the podium. Fairytale stuff, and the kind of moment that rejuvenates your love for f1.

  101. Glen says:

    1. The exciting Brazilian GP and Button winning the Championship.

    2. Webber’s fighting victory at the German GP.

    3. Fisichella’s incredible drive at the Belgian GP.

    4. Button winning the Monaco GP and his lets jog and wave to the crowd routine.

    5. Barichello winning the European GP just like ‘the good old days’.

  102. JP says:

    1. My “discovery” of Ant and Crofty. Let’s hear it for enthusiastic and entertaining commentary. Brundle and Legard hang your heads.

    2. Schumacher’s possible return.

    3. “Monaco baby”

    4. Kobayashi showing up all those mid-grid
    journeymen.

    5. Lewis Hamilton proving without doubt he is a very, very special talent.

  103. karen says:

    1. Mark Webber’s Maiden Win, Germany – Oh my goodness, he finally effing did it, was my reaction. Finally. The most-deserved winner in F1, after being smacked with the most unfair penalty of the season. An incredible drive.

    2. Mark Webber vs Jenson Button, Abu Dhabi – And for anyone who says Mark is a dirty driver, notice they didn’t touch once? A superb example of attack/defend.

    3. Mark Webber dominates Brazil – there was never any doubt about this one. Probably teh most commanding victory in the second half of the season.

    4. Mark Webber vs Fernando Alonso, Spain – a superb overtake that somehow got lost in people’s memories!

    5. Felipe Massa’s mircale – Because watching qualifying live that night, I was absolutely convinced he was going to die.

    1. Paul says:

      Mark Webber fan maybe?

      1. KerbRider says:

        Obviously, but why wouldnt you be? Plus #4 is a good point. A great move. One of the best this decade, and it seems forgotten. The aussie “never give up” spirit shone through.

  104. Paul says:

    1. Button’s pole position lap at Catalunya. From someone who had been off the pace of his teammate for the whole weekend; nailing that lap after crossing the line with less than two seconds to go – that was probably the moment when I first started to think that Button had the mark of a champion.

    2. The relief when we found out Massa was going to pull through, versus the horror when the full extent of his injuries became clear. Good luck to him in 2010.

    3. The duel between Button and Koyabashi at Brazil – great racing! More of the same next year please!

    4. Hamilton desperately trying to chase down Button in Monza for two extra championship points. Yes I know circumstances were unlikely but it’s great to see someone not settle for a podium position.

    5. Grosjean putting his Renault in the wall at turn 17 at Singapore. If only for the irony!

  105. Henrik says:

    1. The battle between FIA and FOTA with FOTA managing to show their strength by forcing Max Mosley to agree with their proposals and finally keeping his word to really step down at the end of his term as the president of FIA. However, it was fantastic to see teams being so united and collectively fighting with the same spirit and for the same goals until the end.

    2. Australian GP – after winter tests there were so many questionmarks that needed an answer – is Brawn really that good? Is McLaren really in deep trouble? Are we really going to see massive surprises this season? Especially qualifying finally proved that the impressions from winter tests had been correct – Brawn GP completely stunned the rivals by beating the rest of the field by more than half of a second in Q3! The race offered a fair amount of intriguing developments, like those massively degrading soft tyres, yet Brawn managed to convert their impressive form into a 1-2 finish, forming the standard for the rest of the first half of the season.

    3. Malaysian GP – It is not often it is possible to witness points being halved for a GP (last it happened in the 1991 Australian GP) neither does it often rain so heavily as it did at Sepang that evening. Combined with Ecclestone’s decision to postpone the start-time in the interest of European viewers, it created an extraordinary and bizarre situation at the end of the race – the circuit was literally flooded and it was getting constantly darker, forcing the organizers to stop the race roughly after half-distance.

    4. The whole Belgian GP weekend. With people having got used to so-called Big Four (Brawn, RBR, Ferrari, McLaren) in the previous few weekends, qualifying offered a massive surprise with Force India on pole position and having the most impressive qualifying-pace together with the resurgent Toyota and BMW-Sauber, which was almost opposite to the pecking order we had seen at Valencia previously. Race proved to be the success of underdogs with Räikkönen staying in front in an inferior car to achieve a historic fourth Spa win and Force India forming their major breakthrough into an incredible second place.

    5. Button v Barrichello at the Spanish GP. In some ways a defining moment of the championship and the debates have lasted until today whether Ross Brawn consciously preferred Button’s win or not. In any case, it was a great battle between two title contenders and even more so the outcome created a lot of intrigue afterwards.

  106. Chris says:

    1. Mark Webber’s maiden win, and that celebration on the radio on his victory lap
    2. Fisi’s pole in Belgium. Who saw that coming? Had it not been for KERS he would of won hands down.
    3. Jenson’s drive in Brazil and subsequent win.
    4. Monza. Ruebens keeping his dream alive.
    5. Ruebens blah blah blah blah blah interview. Shooting from the hip.

  107. mac says:

    (1) Massa surviving that terrible accident.
    (2) Rubens with his Blah Blah Blah oration.
    (3) Brawn buyout from Honda and making it to the grid.
    (4) Looking at the Renault when it was first launched and wondering if they had got the design from a canoe.
    (5) Everything Ross Brawn has done this year: the man is the F1 King Maker . . . . JB is crazy to walk away from a team led by Ross.

  108. Nicollers says:

    5. Fisi’s 2nd place at Spa

    Didn’t back off for one minute. Totally surprised me as I’ve always felt he’s never been a great F1 driver.

    4. Adrian Sutil vs Jarno Trulli

    Fight! Fight! Fight!

    Trulli felt he had 4×4 in his Toyota and ended up worse off. Almost T Boned Alonso and rather than save face started a scrap with Sutil. The tit-for-tat continued in front of the media. Real boys and their toys stuff.

    3. Massa’s crash

    We all feared for the worst, but luckily Felipe bounced back. Proves safety in F1 has improved ten fold.

    2. Jenson’s outside overtake in Sao Paolo

    Not content with passing everyone at Turn 1, JB decided to outside-overtake Grosjean after the re-start. He wanted to win the Championship in Brazil and this outstanding drive sealed it.

    1. Eddie Jordan vs Crazy Dave Coulthard

    Watching these two squabble, bicker and argue was worth paying every penny of my 2009 licence fee. Long may it continue…

  109. Spark says:

    My personal top 5 of last season:

    1. The accident of Felipe. It was a reminder of just how fragile people are. Even with the current safetystandards, this accident made it clear that it is still a dangerous sport. (certainly combined with the accident of Surtees in F2)

    2. Fisi pole in Spa. Alhough Force India showed improved throughout the year, no-one expected this pole. And then they race to pole on merit. Great stuff and pretty much sums up the entire F1 season of 2009. Nobody knew what to expect for the next GP. Who would be in winning form?

    3. The return of the racer Kimi in Spa and winning it while having a hard time with Fisi on his tail for the whole race. It just showed that Kimi is still a fantastic race-driver and he can win in a not so great car on his favourite track.

    4. The Hamilton win in Hungary. Although there were some small chances at Monaco and Germany which were ruined, during this weekend Hamilton showed that he truly is a great race-driver and can win in a car that isn’t capable of doing so.

    5. The Brawn GP 1-2 in Australia. Although the car was by far the best of all, they still had to manage it and certainly Button did an amazing job. But the moment has got to be for the whole team as they were in jeopardy for almost the whole winterbreak and still managed to deliver a monster of a car. To put it all on the DDD, is IMHO cutting short the praise the whole team deserves.

    Two other I would like to mention, but didn’t make my personal top 5 is the overall China performance of Sebastian Vettel, which was great and the first win of Mark Webber which he truly deserved.

  110. Mighty Quin says:

    1. Button’s performance during the race at Brazil – in stark contrast to qualifying. He made more overtaking manoeveours in that race than some drivers managed all season and proved he was a deserving champion.

    2. Massa’s freak accident, coming only days after seeing Henry Surtees in a similar but fatal accident at Brands Hatch, highlighting the danger of open cockpit racing.

    3. Hamilton’s performance in the second half of the season – compared to the first half of the season when he looked like he would have had more luck driving a shopping trolley.

    4. Qualifying in Japan – one of the most dramatic sessions of the season. The first time many of the current drivers had driven there, and it became a guessing game of “Who will go off next?”. That Glock was the only driver seriously injured is a testament to the design quality of these cars.

    5. Massa running along the pit lane at Hungary as the official timing went down – asking the other drivers if they knew what times they had done so they could try and work out the starting grid between them – Comedy gold!

    1. Mighty Quin says:

      sorry – 5 was obviously Alonso

  111. Liam says:

    Mark Webber first win, great drive for a great bloke!!

  112. Liam says:

    Also to sound like a suck.. James Allen’s Blog was a highlight for me.

  113. bryan says:

    1/ Brawn in Ausralia right out the box, 1&2.
    2/ Grosjean biffing the crashgate wall, irony.
    3/ Monaco belonged to Jenson, sublime drive totally at one with the car, rubbish parking tho’ then jogging up to the prizegiving, classic and should be mandatory now, show who is fit!!
    4/Jessica……… what a xmas present
    5/ Brazil had everything, rain quali-Kimi lights up at last – Jens’ championship overtaking fest with everything to lose nailing a weaving Kobi safely especially when you see what he did to his countryman then putting three and a half seconds on him in a lap and a bit. Oh and Eddie nearly getting flattened in pit lane, comedy at its best.
    So: Jenson MBE(My Bloody Effort) fitting end to great season.

  114. Gusz says:

    1. Rubens Barrichello win at Valencia. After been considered finished for F1 he manages to continue and does a very strong second half of the championship.

    2. Jenson Button drive for the championship at Interlagos

    3. Kamui Kobayashi strong races at Interlagos & Abu-Dhabi

    4. Mark Webber maiden win at Nurburgring

    5. Rubens Barrichello awesome pole at Interlagos, after more than 3 hours of qualifying

  115. Andrew Hill says:

    Well there have been a few moments that caught my eye. This is what sticks in my mind.

    1- DiffuserGate (is it legal, isn’t it legal)
    2- CrashGate (did he didn’t he)
    3- Silverstone&DonningtonGate (will they won’t they)
    4- SchumacherGate (was it his neck wasn’t it his neck)
    5- ButtonGate (how did he not win Sports Personality of the year?)
    6- And of course that hand ball by Thierry Henry against Ireland.

  116. Steve says:

    Personally, I think there were so many this season, it’s difficult to bring it down to 5.

    In no particular order:
    1. The Brawn’s performance in the first test, and their subsequent domination of the Australian GP. There had been no team until the days before the test and they showed up at Barcelona with a 2 second/lap advantage.

    2. Jenson running down the pit-straight at Monaco. This was just a moment of theatre, with him forgetting that he should drive to outside the palace. It could almost become a tradition now given how epic and popular the run seemed!

    3. Fisichella’s pole at Spa. This came from nowhere. No-one could have believed, had you said the weekend before that there would be a Force India setting the pace all weekend. This was a turnaround of proportions never before witnessed on a dry circuit.

    4. The entire Brazil GP weekend. The only description for that weekend was epic, with Vettel and Button qualifying low down and Barrichello grabbing pole, and Button fighting through to win the world championship.

    5. Hamilton’s win in Hungary. McLaren had transformed their car from an unbalanced, slow, car at the start of the season to a genuine challenger (at the hands of Hamilton).

  117. Attakorn Saiyasombat says:

    In fifth place:
    Jenson’s Brazil GP drive, especially the overtake on Buemi. A true champions’ drive.

    In fourth place:
    Fisichella on pole in the Belgian GP. A Force India on pole, a team that qualified in to Q3 just once before (and that was helped by the rain), now qualified on top on pure pace.

    In third place:
    Brawn GP’s 1-2 in Australia. Turning their amazing 1-2 qualifying grid into results.

    The runner up:
    Schumacher’s bid to comeback in Valencia. This was one of those moments when you read a news that shocks you literally for 2 minutes.

    And the winner is:
    Brawn GP’s 1-2 Qualifying in Australia. The white blank cars overthrowning the silver and red cars. The beginning of a new era!

  118. Robert says:

    1.Belgian Gp – incredible pole for Fisi,fabolous start from Kimi.Fisico was unlucky because he made both his stops the same lap as Kimi.I think fisi’s car was faster
    2.Kobayashi’s race in abu dhabi.he has a lot of courage and he tries overtaking.I love that in a driver
    3.Hungarian Gp – a great start from fourth for Hamilton and a great win.mclaren bounce back with an evolution of the car
    4.Webber’s maiden win.he drove an excellent race,especially after being penalised with a drive-through
    5.Vettel’s weekend in China.he had lots of problems on friday ,he had little running but he managed pole,fastest lap and win.of course we already know his ability in wet conditions

  119. George says:

    Item: Brawn GP getting pole and winning first race
    Why: A team on the brink of extinction, comes back and delivers a dominant car that goes on to propel the driver and team to the driver’s and constructor’s championship.

    Item: Briatore banned from motorsport for life
    Why: A lifetime ban of one of the sport’s leading protagonists by an out-going FIA President is just “so F1.” It sets a tremendous precedent that will hopefully have the desired effect of other draconian punishments; do something so to draw the legitimacy of the sport into question or doubt, and you are going to pay. Oh, and it is going to hurt. For more information ask Mr. Dennis.

    Item: Todt becomes FIA President
    Why: Usually this type of regime change alone would be enough to warrant its place as a top story of the year. But in Todt, we are already seeing his promised actions being carried-out. His re-alignment of the governance of the different series the FIA oversees, distancing the presidency from the day-to-day running of F1, and maybe most importantly a refinement of the stewards structure at F1 races (why did this one take so long?).

    Item: KERS propels Kimi to glory in Spa
    Why: This was a race that showed how KERS can be used to win a race against a car that didn’t have it. For the most part, aside from adding to story-lines, I don’t think the KERS experiment was a success. It added millions of dollars of R&D to teams when reducing budgets was needed, it was only used by a few teams intermittently, and maybe most telling is that it won’t be used next year. Good riddance.

    Item: Mercedes buys out of Brawn
    Why: MB returns to F1 at a time when manufacturers are leaving in droves. Oh and there is that whole Michael Schumacher story, which if it actually happens the way just about everyone thinks it will, well then I have my number 1 top story for next year already.

  120. 1. Webbers maiden in Germany, the celebration was immense, and the wait was even bigger….
    2. Brawn GP proving that there is still room in this world for a “Jack-in-the-Box”, their season was amazing.
    3. Lewis proving that he can drive the wheels off a crap car, he has earned mega respect for this years stuggle.
    4. Crashgate, With Flav in his Speedo’s and Piquet Jr given immunity…. where’s the harm in a little controversy?
    5. The DD debacle, I never would have thought such a little thing could stir up such a storm. Teacups the size of mountains, and a few avalanches to boot…. Who’d have thought they were legal and Adrian Newey would be caught out ???

  121. Blythy says:

    1. Webber getting his first win, and the way he got it – with a drive through penalty.

    2. Button going for it (finally) in Brazil.

    3. Button starting what I hope is a new tradition in Monaco by running to the podium.

    4. Fisichella getting pole in Belgium

    5. Webber’s overtake of Alonso in spain / his move on Button in china.

  122. F1-FAN says:

    1.The announcement that the British Grand Prix was staying in F1. All in All, this is very good news for us, fans. With last two British champions, going into 2011. without it, would be disaster. Fortunately, things sorted out.
    2.Kimi’s victory at SPA. Kimi again showing in his maybe last season in F1 that he is still a top driver.
    3.McLaren’s super comeback. Fantastic job by engineers. Their resurgence from 2.5 sec in winter is remarkable.
    4.Kamui’s fight with Button and his two fantastic races. – The best rookie of the season.
    5.Toyota’s and Bmw’s pullouts. – This is bad.

  123. Ishaak Ugradar says:

    1.Massa’s return to health when it looked so unlikely.
    2.Hamilton’s win in Hungary.
    3.Webber’s first victory (and celebration).
    4.Japan Qualifying.
    5.Mclaren signing Button.

  124. Cliff says:

    Hi James,

    1. Button parking in the wromg place ay Monaco amd having to run to meet Prince Albert – Just for once, no-one complained and there was no fine for not obeying the rules. The crowd appeared to like it also.

    2. Button in Brazil – Champions drive, qualifying 14th was a shock to his system. On that day he showed his true talent.

    3. Webbers win in Germany – Never been a big fan, but maximum respect for a very impressive win. Sometimes it’s good to be proved wrong as I was that day.

    4. Fisi’s Force India at Spa. Force India had said they had a quick car in previous races, at Spa they proved it.

    5. Seeing Ron Dennis in the Paddock in Abu Dhabi. Inspite of what’s gone on previously, this is a man who has done more good for the sport of F1 than he has been ever credited. I can’t quite forgive the last few years, but neither can I forget the Senna, Prost, Mika and Kimi, not to mention his Lewis years.

    James,

    Can I take this opportunity to thank you for the bloggs this year and I look forward to more insight from your good-self in the coming years.

    A Merry Christmas to you and all the other contributors to this site. Unlike most other F1 Sites, the arguments are generally reasoned, (even if we don’t allways agree) and well presented.

  125. Adrian says:

    Having skipped past everyone elses so as to stop myself from being swayed by them, my top 5 are:

    5) Rubens’ first win since 2004 at the European GP (Also I believe the 100th GP win for a Brazilian Driver)
    4) Fisi’s performance at Spa
    3) The will-he-won’t-he surrounding one M Schumacher returning to the sport, both during the summer and now in the off-season
    2) Lewis Hamilton winning in Hungary after how badly McLaren’s season started
    1) Jenson winning the WDC

  126. Dominic J says:

    1. Felipe – siamo con te. The love of the Ferrari family so aptly demonstrated.

    2. Podium celebrations in Oz – who would’ve ever believed?

    3. Fisichella’s pole and 2nd place. A great drive and a perfect adieu to Force India.

    4. The expulsion of Briatore – cheating should never be tolerated, particularly not life-threatening “dives”.

    5. Kamui – puts Trulli, Glock, Grosjean, Algersuari, Badoer and Fisichella in their place by showing what a newcomer could do in a Toyota.

    Hon mensh to Luca Badoer’s 3 letter code on timing screens “BAD”.

  127. rich says:

    1. Mark Webber’s long overdue and richly deserved maiden win at the Nurburgring.

    2. Rubens Barrichello’s immensly popular return to the top step in Valencia

    3. Jenson Button’s jog down the pitlane after Monaco win.

    4. Force India’s strong Saturday showing at Spa, then the realisation that it was not a wacky fuel load but pure pace and driver brilliance. Too bad he didn’t manage to convert it into a win (story of his career really ;-)

    5. Felipe baby, stay cool!

  128. Sniffer says:

    1. Button pole lap at Monaco. Special

    2. Hamilton win at Hungaroring. Epic turnaround in fortunes.

    3. Vettel and Kubica face-off at Melbourne.’Just two young lions clawin’ at each other.’ With thanks to Mario for the quote 30 years before!

    4. Ross’ tears of joy at end of Brazilian Grand Prix.

    5. Mark Webber breakthrough win at the Ring proving nice guys can win too!

  129. yos says:

    For me the top five moments of the season are:
    1. Brawn 1 – 2 in Melbourne, its astonishing to see a team which was supposed to be out of action in F1 start of domination.
    2. A force india Pole and podium at spa. Its fine to see small teams beating bigger teams.
    3. Hamilton win in Hungary, what a turn around for mclaren…
    4. Massa’s terrible accident and the unseccesfull come-back of Schumacher which gave way a drive Badoer… a real fiasco.
    5. The Brazilian GP as a whole, from Button’s fightback, Kubica’s podium, Hamilton’s first ever 1 stoper paying to a birth of a star in a Kobyashi and Marc webber victory.

  130. Rhys Xanthis says:

    1. Webber’s win in Germany.

    I’m aussie. I was there. My first visit to Europe, my first GP in Europe. It was such an incredible day at the Nurburgring – I will never ever forget it.

    2. GP of Australia

    While result not good for Webber/RBR, it was my first ever GP and I had an incredible time meeting all the drivers and seeing (and hearing) the cars for my very first time. I’m hooked.

    3. Kobayashi’s 2.5 weekends

    A big breath of fresh air into the sport. A rookie who can really fight for positions, a driver really fighting for a seat and something to come back to.

    4. Felipe Massa’s accident.

    For all the wrong reasons this is a highlight really. Sitting in a hotel room in Singapore watching, after I had seen him grab a podium in Germany 2 weeks before, it was very surreal. First really serious accident I’d seen in F1. Just amazing to see how far the sport has come.

    5. “Felipe baby, stay cool, we’re bringing you the white visor”

    And all the associated jokes/send-ups that followed!

    Merry Christmas to all in your household James, and safe travels for 2010.

  131. Mattij says:

    1. Kimi having ice-cream while everyone else are soaking in torrential rain. What made this a great media-disaster was that there was nothing wrong with that as he had retired.

    2. Kimi shooting out of Eau Rouge much faster than others at start and restart of Spa. Was it only KERS? We have seen him do that in other years too.

    3. Kimi actually looking slightly moved by Italian crowd cheering his Monza podium.

    4. Irritated Kimi asking the team to NOT talk to him all the time during a Malaysian practise session.

    5. Kimi visiting comatose Felipe in the hospital, and later everyone complaining that he did not care.

  132. Chris Lykins says:

    1.Qualifying in Japan
    2.Grosean crashing where Piquet did
    3.Webber @ Nurburgring winning with a drive-through
    4.Vettel setting fastest lap when his team told him to back off.
    5.Webbers nuts move on Alonso in Barcelona

    1. Skanda says:

      “Vettel setting fastest lap when his team told him to back off.”

      I think the radio messages broadcasted are delayed on television. That should have been a message after he posted the fastest lap.

  133. kristian says:

    Slightly off-topic: Congratulations on your Autosport feature. Is this going to be a regular regular?

    1. kristian says:

      regular regular = regular feature. *smacks forehead*

  134. Pat says:

    Well James are you going to share your own top 5 with us after this ?

    1. James Allen says:

      Of course! But the readers ones don’t have to match I’m just going to pick the most entertaining or interesting ones

  135. Lewis says:

    Trying to keep a strict definition of ‘moment’…

    1. Mark Webber’s post race celebrations in Germany (if only the VCR had recorded the bloody race!)
    2. Hamilton’s doughnuts after silverstone. Given the year he was having, he might be forgiven for wanting to get back to the garages asap, but he didn’t forget his fans. Well in
    3. Webber vs Alonso into turn 1 at Barcalona. Just wow. Definately o/t of the year for me
    4. Hungarian GP qually. Ok, not a moment, but I’m stretching it to include Massa’s accident (which would have been THE moment if not for a few lucky centimeters) and the timimg loss at the end where the top 10 tried to work out the grid amongst themselves.
    5. The race at Abu Dhabi was a surprising success, but the moment for me was the fight between Mark and Jenson on the last 2 laps, I’m showing some bias now, but it was fingernail biting stuff.

    Merry Christmas F1 fans! Roll on 2010 season!

  136. Manos says:

    1. Button-Barrichello finishing 1-2 under safety car in Melbourne showing the “new world order”. Dominant weekend in what ended to be a dominant season.
    2. Button struggling to overtake Kobayashi in Brazilian GP in his way to secure his title. He finally did it reflecting in a way his difficult second half of the season.
    3. Hamilton winning the Hungarian GP having overtaken Webber who dominated the previous German GP. 2008 champion stating his status while taking the last turn before crossing the line.
    4. Raikonnen overtaking Fishicella at Spa. Ferrari winning despite not having the best car. KERS at its best of the season. 4th win at Spa for Kimi in what may be his last F1 season.
    5. Massa’s accident in Hungary. Ferrari was not able to find an equal replacement and actually raced with one driver for the rest of the season. It cost them 3rd place in the constructors championship.

  137. Dkfone says:

    In no particular order:
    1. Brazil – Epic, and entertaining, I chose the right race to invite my mates to watch, it had everything, crashes, overtaking, drivers fighting, and a champions drive from a man who was beginning to look like he didnt want to win the title. Its important to attract new viewers to the sport and had i invited friends to watch the Valencia gp they would not have been impresed. Instead they were treated to a superb spectacle that epitomises all the reasons why I love F1.

    2.Buying the season review dvd, watching the nurbergring race, seeing Massa defend from Vettel, and hearing Rob Smedley say “Good Boy, good boy, I like that lad” Rob smedley sounds like a genuine character on the radio, unlike the mclaren engineers who have a distinctly robotic element.

    3. Vettels pole at china, his quali laps here were Senna or hakkinen like. No track running because of car trouble, 1 lap only, pressures on and he nails it. Ok Vettel made too many mistakes during the year but his performance at Shanghai was greatness.

    4.Hamiltons crash at Monza – It may sound odd but this crash sums up why i am a fan of lewis. Too often, the last 10 laps of a race give one the impression that the drivers are simply coasting to the flag. Hamilton made a mistake because he was pushing 130%. That is what makes him such a relentless racer and why he obliterated Kovalinen this season. Also what was equally impressive was that he won races in a car which was some way inferior to Brawn or Redbull.

    5. The SCHU returning, The prospect of the schu taking on hamilton is mouthwatering.

    Others: Mr Legard calling it formula done at Melbourne Quali.

  138. InnocentBystander says:

    1. Webber dominates at the Nurburgring to claim his maiden victory.
    A stunning drive. His radio celebration brought a tear to my eye and seeing the entire paddock celebrating at the podium ceremony reminded me why I love this sport.

    2. Brawn and Red Bull’s pace.
    I loved this season. It was great to see different teams and drivers getting their chance to battle up the front.

    3. Mark & Jenson showing how it’s done in Abu Dhabi.
    Brilliant driving from the two veterans. It wasn’t just Abu Dhabi though..the pair of them put on a season long overtaking school. Webber retaking Alonso at Barcelona was one of the best moves I’ve seen in a long while.

    4. The Brazil GP.
    Just awesome all round.

    5. Rubens win in Valencia.
    A well deserved, emotional victory for a man who is clearly well liked in the paddock.

    Honorable mentions go to: Kobayashi making his mark in spectacular style, Fisi’s pole and 2nd place at Spa (and FI’s improvement overall this season), Vettel Silverstone dominance, Red Bull’s wet weather masterclass in China and Massa surviving an horrific accident which could very easily have been fatal.

  139. Trent says:

    #5 Qualifying, Melbourne – Brawn lock out the front row and McLaren and Ferrari are nowhere. The writing is on the wall – 2009 will be the most left-field season for a long time.

    #4 Qualifying, Belgium – In a season where the grids have never been so close, Force India show what happens when the car is totally in sync with the track and those vital extra tenths come your way. One of the most astonishing pole positions ever!

    #3 German Grand Prix – A drivers first win is always emotional, but after so many near misses for Webber this one was tremendously satisfying for himself and the fans

    #2 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix – As dusk turned to evening amongst the futuristic adornments of Yas Marina, Button and Webber ensured that we were on the edge of our seats to the very last corner of 2009

    #1 Brazilian Grand Prix – With the pressure ratcheting up with every passing race, Button drops the conservative approach and fights hard and with passion to clinch the championship in style

  140. George O'Donnell says:

    My top 5 moments of the year are as follows:

    1. Brawn scoring a 1-2 finish at Melbourne. Such a triumph after not existing at the start of the month.

    2. Victory for Webber in Germany. After his leg break in the winter, he was so dominant in Germany to score one of the most popular victories. He skill and speed he showed were fantastic – especially after the blow of being given a drive through penalty.

    3. Victory for Lewis Hamilton in Hungary. Never has a team improved so much in a single season to win a race. He showed how much he wanted to win, and it was dominant.

    4. Victories for Rubens Barrichello. They meant so much to him and his family. The Brawn car no longer had dominance, yet Rubens managed to win. It was fun!

    5. Fisichella in Belgium. Pole position, and had the speed to win if it hadn’t have been for that restart. Stunning shock.

    I seem to have only chosen poles and wins. But it was a varied season, one which I’ve really enjoyed.

  141. Nick says:

    Haha what an idiot. Cheers guys and quite a good mix in the video aswell!

  142. Skanda says:

    In no particular order:

    1. The Brawns with 1-2 finish in the season opener

    2. Massa’s accident.

    3. Schumi’s comeback that never was.

    4. Piquet’s damning controversy

    5. Lewis Hamilton’s pole lap in Abu Dhabi

    6. Button leaving it late to win the championship in Brazil.

  143. Jose Arellano says:

    1.-Brawn Pole and victory in melbourne, we all got the certain that the car was supreme!

    2.-Button pole in monaco, he was struggling over the weekeend but progressed steadily and put together a stunning lap in the end.

    3.-Barrichello beating button in monza.

    4.-Fisichella pole at spa
    5.-Raikkonen taking the win from him!

  144. Rudy Pyatt says:

    1. Mercedes’ agreement to sell engines to Brawn – Allowed Ross to save the team and the creation of a championship-winning package.

    2. “Liegate” – A signal that McLaren had a hard slog coming, and drove Ron Dennis off into the sunset, making him the first domino to fall.

    3. FOTA’s breakaway decision – The Big One, a 6.0 on the Richter Scale, caused everyone to admit that the Unthinkable is Thinkable. And knocked over Max Mosley, the second domino.

    4. “Crashgate” – The Unthinkable IS Thinkable. And doable. Knocked over the third domino, Flavio Briatore – with a side order of Pat Symonds and a garnish of Nelson Piquet.

    5. The departures of Honda, BMW, Toyota and Renault (surviving in name only, at least for now). Dominoes all fall down.

    A Revolutionary Year indeed.

  145. Ahsan Zameer says:

    1. Lewis Vs. Stewards
    2. Massa Crash
    3. Button WDC
    4. Mclaren – Mercedes Divorce
    5. Kimi’s F1 exit

  146. Frenchie says:

    1 – BGP001 topping the timesheets at first test in Barcelona – it got everyone talking.

    2 – Brawn GP’s 1-2 in Australia – the march is on.

    3 – Singapore crashgate – not because this is good for the sport but more to prove the point that ANYTHING can happen in F1.

    4 – Webber’s first win – long overdued and well deserved.

    5 – Jenson’s champion drive in Brazil – it was good to see race again instead of protecting his lead.

  147. Chantal says:

    1. Brawn’s one two in Australia. A fairy tail comes true
    2. Jenson Buttons amazing drive in Brazil and taking the championship a race before the end of the season. His overtaking was the best I’ve seen in years – a true world champion’s drive.
    3. Giancarlo Fisichella’s pole and second place in Belgium. All the more amazing as it was due to pure pace and not the attrition of others.
    4. Hamilton’s and McLaren’s come back. His win in the Hungarian Grand Prix was pure magic, even though we were all saddened by Massa’s horrific crash the day before.
    5. Kamui Kobayashi. A truly spirited drive in the last two races. What a relief after the other stand-in drivers had all failed to impress.

  148. these are my top 5:

    5- Lewis & Trulli incident in Australia and the consequences of it.
    4- Brawn’s 1-2 in melbourne
    3- Kimi’s Win in Spa.
    2- Webber’s First win in his career.
    1- Massa’s crash (it is what led to shcumacher coming back to F1 isn’t it?)

    Greetings from SaudiArabia

  149. Glen D says:

    Lots of things to think of this year. So here we go:

    1) Brawn 1-2 in Oz – After the winter drama there could not have been a better start to the year….

    2) Lie-gate – Then Hamilton and Ryan (if i remember his name right) lying to the aussie stewards

    3) Fisi on Pole!!! – Huge pole position for Fisichella at Spa in one of the biggest performance surprises in recent years!

    4) Crash-gate – More scandel with last years Singapore GP crash involving Piquet coming out that it was planned and the subsequant departure of Briatore and Symonds

    5) Brazil GP – It had everything. Dodgy weather during quali, crashes, on track fighting (trulli and Sutil), great overtaking and a champions drive by Jensen to clinch WDC and Brawn contructors title.

    A very memorable season. Lots of ups and down. I could have done a top 20 easily. Lets hope 2010 is just as good.

    Great website James (and team), have a great christmas and new year!!!

  150. 77 says:

    5 Button’s Barca pole lap – last guy on track, all eyes on him, delivers.
    4 Button’s monaco jog
    3 Fisi’s spa pole / hounding down kimi in the race
    2 Webber’s radio post-victory
    1 Button’s Brazil Drive

    special mentions to:
    JBs various overtakes (remember JB on kubica in suzuka!)
    Aus 1-2 for Brawn; the fairytale
    Vettel’s GB/suzuka dominance
    Kimi and his choc ice!

  151. guy says:

    “Eh bien, mon prince. Genes and Lucquas ne sont plus que des apanages, des estates, de la famille Buonaparte…”

    just kidding

    5-Kimi buying a Choco-ice
    4-Nelson Piqute Jr. getting canned
    3-Mosley surviving a nazi-theme orgy and finally retiring the following year after what seemed like a millennium
    2-Hamilton spinning 247 times in the GP of China
    1-Kobayashi’s debut

  152. jesee says:

    1. Kobayashi debut and drive in abudhabi, overtaking Button in style.

    2.Hamilton’s maturity when he had the dog and his masterclass of a pole in abudhabi.

    3.Webber first win

    4. Force india taking 2nd in Spa with Fisi.

    5. Button and Webber duel in Abudhabi.

  153. Jay says:

    1) Brawn 1-2 at Melbourne. We’d seen the raw speed in testing/qualifying, but could the bodged Brawn make it through the race? Yes, and it set up the winner for a good season…

    2) Crashgate. The sacking of Piquet. The rumours and the rebuffs. The story lingers. The mood changes. The FIA step in. The realisation; the shock. The loss of two ever-present characters. The damage to F1′s reputation. The manifestation of a desire to win, at *any* cost.

    3) Massa’s accident. A reminder that beneath the bitching, feuding and rivalry, the concern for the safety of the drivers and marshals is paramount and shared by everyone working in the sport.

    4) The Belgian GP. First for the shocking speed of the Force India. Even on Sunday morning the talk was of Trulli or Heidfeld, not Fisichella. But also for what maybe the last great drive from Raikonnen. Even with KERS, he caught, passed and held off a faster car.

    5) Rubens’ wins at Valencia and Monza. There was a real sense of joy from all the teams to see the elder statesman get what he deserved, if not for Brawn, then for his time as the faithful servant at Ferrari.

    That was more difficult than I thought; and I’ve managed to leave out Hamilton/Vettel/Webber, and the clinching of the WDC/WCC!

  154. Raja Sen says:

    It was a horrid moment, but I think the year’s most historic milestone was Massa’s accident which got Michael Schumacher thinking of a comeback, one he is now in the process of confirming. If Schumacher does indeed shine, then the tragic Massa accident will forever be remembered as the catalyst that made a retired driver decide that he really wanted to race again.

  155. Ted the Mechanic says:

    Highlights for me:-

    1. Schumi’s on-off-on again fairytale comeback story in all its guises. Got my motor and my blog running. And as to all the poo-poo
    ‘Schumacher is the anti-Christ’ bloggers… Predictable, boring, ha-ha-ha.

    2. The rise of the underdogs – Ross Brawn, Nick Fry (is it okay to include Nick in this equation?), Jenson and Rubens working their magic on the ill-fated Honda adding a Merc donk and creating an extreme future that brought two world titles, heavyweight’s Merc, Schumi and Brawn back together, healthy sponsorhip and rebirthed the hallowed Silver Arrows… WOW! What a year!

    3. The “Who’s gonna win this week?” uncertainty as different cars were developed, updated, improved (or not) and apart from the first few races we just didn’t really have any idea which team or driver was going to win each race (apart from McLaren and Ferrari of course where only one driver was capable of winning if the car was good enough). Fantastic – even if I’d rather the cars were a bit more even.

    4. The departure (finally!?) of Max Mosley from the FIA Presidency and his successor Jean Todt appearing to be his own man and quietly going about the business of improving F1 (by all accounts) without venomously attacking key stakeholders and bringing the sport into disrepute. See, it wasn’t so hard, there is life after Mosley and heated conflict is not mandatory between the FIA and F1.

    5. Kamui Kobayashi’s sensational entrance proving that F1 cars are not as hard to drive as Badoer, Fisichella, Alguesari & Grosjean were making them out to be this year. Reprised memories of Senna, Schumi, Alonso and Hamilton rookie performances. Great stuff that made for riveting viewing as Jenson did his damndest to pass the debutant. Glad he’s on board for 2010.

    Sorry James, if this is just a little bit War and Peace-ish… And it wasn’t just on-track moments for me obviously.

    But thanks for asking.

  156. Sue Ratcliffe says:

    1. BrawnGP turning up in Australia. What a story.
    2. BrawnGP 1-2 in Australia. As above.
    3. Brawn 1-2 at Monza. I was there and I had a brilliant view of the podium. It took away those dreadful memories of Michael’s retirement announcement in 2006.
    4. Kobayashi’s appearance. At last a rookie with some some promise.
    5. Brawn winning both championships. There will never be a story like it.

  157. Senthil says:

    1.Brawn GP’s first race in Oz
    2.Kimi having ice lollies at Malaysian GP
    3.Crash gate and Liar gate.
    4.massa’s accident
    5.Kimi’s race at Spa

  158. Rich Gibbons says:

    In order of occurence:

    1. Brawn GP’s “phoenix from the flames” moment during their first test session of the year when, against all the odds but with help from Mercedes, they were easily quicker than all the other teams

    2. Kimi calmly eating an ice-cream before the restart-that-never-was at the Malaysian GP… an event more likely to be his epitaph than his actual racing achievements!

    3. “Crashgate” – when news first broke about this, I so wanted it to be true just because it was so unbelievable. Ruined the careers of three people and possibly helped Renault to decide to sell a big chunk of the team.

    4. The Brazilian Grand Prix (the only race of the year that I was unable to watch live, arrrrrrgh!!) had everything – Barrichello’s pole at home, handbag fights, excitement from Toyota(!) in the form of Kamui Kobayashi, stunning drives from Lewis and Jenson, wet weather in qualifying, crashes galore, a pitlane fireball, and the clinching of both World Championships.

    5. The announcement, after much media speculation, that Michael Schumacher would be making his return to F1 for Mercedes. As if 2009 wasn’t exciting enough, what will 2010 bring?!

  159. Chris says:

    My top 5 are:

    1. Jenson’s overtaking drive in Brazil to prove to all the doubters he was a worthy champion

    2. ‘Crashgate’ which revealed the depths the sport had sunk to and the ironic fact that the person who caused the crash (Piquet) got off scott free.

    3. The bloke at Ferrari who got spotted by the BBC showing a driver around the Ferrari garage as all the rumours of Badoer’s demise were rife, and the ear wigging he got from Stefano Dommenicali. Great timing!

    4. Jenson’s win in Malaysia in the dreadful wet conditions where he kept an amazing pace. A class drive.

    5. Kimi’s ice cream! The ice man cometh!

  160. Trixie says:

    Guess there’s still time to include my top 5…
    1. Kimi’s win at Spa, being Ferrari’s one and only win for the season. He is certifiably the King of Spa
    2. Kimi’s “tactical” (?) start and eventual overtake of Fisichella after the re-start at Spa.
    3. Kimi continuing to drive despite being set ablaze by Kovalainen’s split fuel and petrol getting into his eyes. He lives up to his Iceman persona.
    4. Kimi opting for ice cream & Coke in the Malaysian monsoon, while the other drivers sat it out in the wet waiting for the restart that never happened. Smart boy! I’m surprised Coke or Magnum (it looked like a Magnum) didn’t make the most of this advertising opportunity….
    5. Ferrari and Kimi parting ways, allowing him to be the highest paid non-driving F1 racer!

    James, I only wished I ordered your book earlier when the exchange rate was better…! But I’ll cop the hit since you promoted it so attractively here. Merry Christmas to all!

  161. Sebee says:

    Schumi back is a late top 5 moment for sure

  162. Zebra says:

    1. Button hanging it all out with a gutsy drive in Brazil – and particularly that wall of death pass round the outside of Grosjean.
    2. The Brawns crossing the line 1-2 in Oz with the low sun bouncing off the cars and the ecstatic podium celebrations – what an astonishing turnaround of fortunes.
    3. Fisichella, on pole, in a Force India. They looked quick that weekend but that was something else. And they nearly went and won it!
    4. Hamilton maturing – he was a broken man after Oz and learnt to live with a bad car. Watching him through the season, it’s clear he’s become a far more rounded racer.
    5. ‘Felipe baby stay cool’ – best radio transmission of the year! Well, he did need a white visor.

  163. Malcolm 46 says:

    1) The whole Brazilian GP. So many impressive drives here that it could fill up the whole top 5. Button, Webber, Kubica, Hamilton, all were ‘on it’ during the race, and proved to be a great GP.

    2) Brawn’s first win in oz. The emotion and race win was great for F1, a team that nearly didnt race, came along from nowhere and claimed first and second. A great story, and one that will live long in the memory.

    3) Hamilton, all season. Drove the nuts off a car that shouldnt have finished where it did. A few wins and podiums plus THAT pole lap in Abu Duabi, great season from the 2008 world champion – his commitment and driving ability came to the fore in 09 to show how good the kid is.

    4) All the politics, break aways, crashgate, budget caps, lie gate, you name it, it all had us gripped as to what would happen next.

    5) The change of order in F1, whether it was Force India taking pole, or Red Bull/Brawn dominating the season, F1 2009 was so unpredictable it made it the spectacule we all enjoyed.

    Sorry if some of these points a bit vague, but I’ve taken the easy option of avoiding the specific points because 2009 was a great season on and off the track. The BBC did a great job, with Brundles expert commentary and Eddie Jordan running off and grabbing all sorts of people live on air, made it great for the vewiers, shame James wasnt commentating though….!

    Wish James and everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, role on Bahrain in March!

  164. Sinan says:

    1) Button’s Brazilian GP drive – especially his fight with Kobayashi. The whole GP was a great spectacle, but have to choose one thing.

    2) FOTA’s announcement of the breakaway series and reversal.

    3) McLaren’s Hungaroring victory. It was just incredible how they turned around that dog of a car into a winner.

    4) Malasian GP. It was short, but worth every moment.

    5) The first test of the Brawn car. So many jaws dropped when the time sheets came out, it was funny.

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