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My Top 5 F1 moments of the 2009 season
My Top 5 F1 moments of the 2009 season
Posted By: James Allen  |  24 Dec 2009   |  7:21 pm GMT  |  45 comments

Thanks to all the people who sent in their Top Five moments of the season. There were some really good ones, well expressed.

It was a crazy year, with some great moments on the track and some totally insane goings on off the track. Hopefully there will be no return to the hyper politics of this year, but I do fear that the next negotiation over the Concorde Agreement post 2012 is going to get bloody. Behind the scenes it is the topic on the minds and lips of all team principals at the moment.

I read all your entries and have picked out five winners, based on what they said and in many cases the way they said it. There were some common themes; Webber’s win in Germany was very popular as was Kobayashi’s debut, the Fisi vs Kimi Spa battle and Button’s drive in Brazil.

These were the five that entertained me the most:
No 38 – Steve Q
No 79 – Pierre
No 85 – Chris Bird
No 130 – Rhys Xanthis
No 158 – Rich Gibbons

Congratulations. We will be in touch with you after the holiday period to get addresses and a signed copy of my 2009 yearbook will be sent off to you.

As for my Top Five Moments of the year they are as follows:

1. Barcelona Test – Day 1 of testing for the new Brawn Mercedes car. It happens once every ten years or so that you are at a test and you see a car which is so obviously right, so perfect straight out of the box and so darned fast. I remember talking to Jenson that evening and he was bouncing up and down with excitement. Ross Brawn seemed very pleased. It was obvious what would happen next.

2. Spa – Fisi on pole in a Force India on merit – I’ve seen those Force India guys toiling away just as hard as any other team and for such scant rewards in recent years. It was a great to see such joy on their faces. Fisi drove well in the race, but Kimi Raikkonen did better. The Ferrari wasn’t a match for the Force India on the day (yes, you read that right) but he overcame him through stealth and opportunism with KERS. It was a brilliant motor race.

3. Silverstone – Friday morning was full of drama after FOTA announced they were breaking away to start their own series. This was serious and it was so unbelievably tense in the paddock. But Sunday as the grid formed up was THE moment – a sell out crowd, the sheer passion and enthusiasm of the fans was fantastic. It sent out a signal of how great F1 can be. Vettel then drove a blinder.

4. Alonso’s press briefing in Suzuka when he could finally talk about joining Ferrari after almost a year of saying “Wait and see”. There is a thrilling energy about these landmark press conferences and you sensed that this was a big moment – a great champion signing for Ferrari, the start of a new era.

5. Button running down the pit lane at Monaco – he must have lain in bed all his childhood dreaming of winning the Monaco GP and he did it in great style. But then he cocked it up by forgetting that this is the one race where you drive up to the Prince’s box on the start line to get the trophy. The running man bit was so far off the script it was hilarious.

Thanks to everyone for visiting the site this year, for leaving such interesting comments and for spreading the word and letting others know about it.

The site has grown way beyond my expectations and I’ve really enjoyed the interactivity with you all. We’ve got some exciting developments planned for 2010 and I look forward to it with great enthusiasm.

Tomorrow we will have the introduction to a themed series of posts which will run over the holiday period, and I will welcome your ideas and feedback.

Happy Christmas to you all.

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Thanks for all your efforts James. You've added magnificantly to a brilliant year in F1.

Merry Christmas!




Thanks James really enjoyed your web site and the tweets, Merry Christmas to you and your family and a Happy new year ! looking forward to quality content on here in 2010 wich looks to be a great season (media say that every december but for once i agree!)


happy christmas james! And thanks for such a great site and such detailed insight into the season. Well done and let's hope you're back in a commentary box soon. Keep it up.


Happy Christmas James. Thank you for providing such a great insight into events this year in what has been one of the most memorable F1 seasons ever! Your website has become a "must visit" every day to get the latest F1 news.


What a surprise... thanks A LOT for choosing my post, James.

It's been a real and true pleasure to read you through the year. Racing and F1 are my passion since english friends took the boy I was to the 82 british GP. I have grown up with Prost and Senna generation (and what a generation!), watched hundreds of GPs, red a lot of books, magazines and then websites, drove racing cars, still drive go-kart, I think I can say I'm a bit "experienced". But since the missed Gérard Crombac, I had not red someone more interesting and insightfull as you.

Congratulations for the work you do. Please follow-up and give us a 2010 website even better as the 2009 one!

Merry XMas and happy new year to you, the ones you love, and all your readers. Thanks agains. Pierre


What NO mention of McLaren's fightback throughout the season, a feat never seen before ❓

As this was the first time EVER this has been achieved I am amazed how it doesn't rank in your top 5................:?


I agree that it was amazing and have written about it extensively - even predicted it post Bahrain, but it wasn't a moment, it was a trend


Having been a follower of F1 since the late 60's, for me the single thing that will stay with me about the 2009 season was the McLaren fightback, as I say this HAS NEVER be achieved before and shows both a will, tenacity and sheer ability seldom seen in any sport never mind F1.

In reality 2009 was a pretty drab season for the on track action and more than a few of the races were not worth my time in watching them.

Jenson, in my view was lucky that BOTH Ferrari and McLaren got it wrong at the beginning of the season and it;s abundantly clear that now Schumacher is returning that most want to see him up against Hamilton, poor Jenson doesn't get a mention which demonstrates what fans, in the main think.


Merry Christmas to you and your family, James

Throughout the year your web site is the one I visited most after Autosport site and your toolbar is now a must-have accessory on all my computers.

Thanks for all your efforts.


James this is a MUST in today's world: You must make a "Page" for your website on Facebook for many reasons but these two are probably the strongest:

1. exposure your website will get through facebook will be amazing and just the kind it deserves and

2. you can send updates to everyone who is a "fan" of your page and by that notify people of new posts on your website (which is also a good way around that problem with cookies and cache you've been having here 🙂 )

Thanks for this great website, I'm visiting it everyday, many times a day! 🙂


Facebook is part of the 2010 plan. Thanks


Hi James,

Nice list, great site and have a good one.

P.S Get a forum on here. Please.


Thank you James for all your insights this year, this site is always the first place I check for F1 news.

Ive missed your input on the telly this year but your site makes up for that.

I didnt enter this competition simply because I couldnt get my list down to 5, its been a fantastic year and next year looks to be even better.

Keep up the good work and Merry Christmas!!!


I'd just like to say thanks for keeping this blog going; your insights into what's going on behind the stories always gives them that little bit extra - looking forward to seeing what you've got planned for 2010.

Merry Christmas to you and the family


I had some great moments too, James is a passionate guy who loves F1, every day i make sure i read the post and comments, James takes a lot of time by interacting with his site fans on the comments page, i know most people will never ever bother to connect with their fans, James also has one of the best tweets and i also pick up more stuff that Brundle and Co miss out.

It was a great year but i hope that we enjoy the F1 races and less politics and who is dominating who.


Merry Christmas, James. You've done a bang up job this year, you deserve to put your feet up with a mince pie or five. All the best & here's to a ridiculously exciting 2010 season.


Thank you so much for this website James. It has really deepened my enjoyment of the 2009 season. Wishing you and yours a very happy Christmas and looking forward to 2010 on


really big moments this year . thanks a lot Mr Allen for this superb , brilliant website and

for letting guys like me having a share in f 1 's world specially when you are far a way from Britain , Europe and the f1 world



I just want to wish you a very merry christmas and thank you for your excellent coverage of F1 this year. You are always my finest source of information.

Thank you.


James I just want to say thanks so much for this blog! Every day I flick through all the F1 sites which I have done for many years and before that it was a flick through Ceefax and Teletext... that's how long I've followed F1 religiously!

But your blog has taken it up to the next level and I often check it 2 or 3 times a day!

So I just humbly want to thank you for all this insightful information you have provided

and one of the other best things about it, is all the comments are nicely moderated, there is a quality of membership and participation here which lacks in other sites where verbal abuse is commonly come across, or you have to tolerate childish comments

Thanks again for this year and I so look forward to reading the blog throughout 2010




Have to be honest James, I never did like you on ITV... but as a writer on here I can't fault your dedication and determination to get to the bottom of a story.

It's been an enjoyable year... looking forward to 2010.

All the best and Happy Christmas




Hi, I know this is not a post, but I cannot find a way to contact the moderator. In the rules of the forum section, it says suggestions and comments are welcome and to contact the moderator but I cannot find a way to do this... also I found a link to the editior and this also fails. I have a suggestion I want to pass to James, but how do I do this, could you let me know?



Thank you for all your great posts over the year James!

Keep up the great work in 2010!

Happy Christmas to you and everyone else who visits your site!


Happy Christmas James,

Thanks a million for the brilliant blog... I check your blog every morning before I check my email!

I look forward to your new improved blog in 2010!


Don Farrell



Thanks and Happy Christmas


Well after the most recent events my top event for 2009 season is Michael Schumacher comeback effort this summer.

Yes it didn´t work out at that moment,but it started all the building to the extraordinary news of Schumacher comeback to F1 for next season.


Nice one James. I reckon the reason people read your stuff is because it's straight from the horse's mouth. And the BBC website is such watered down tripe. Merry xmas chief, look forward to seeing you next year down the pit lane as that pensioner kraut has his ass blown away by the brits!


Merry Christmas James!

Thank you for a great year of insightful and interesting stories. Have a Happy New Year.


I look forward to an exciting year ahead from your website.

Merry Christmas.


That's interesting... a testing day in the first position... I didn't think of a testing day being more exciting than a grand prix weekend, but that makes sense. In Brazil we have far less coverage than you guys in Europe, so I think we don't get the full picture... glad we have JAF1 website so we can make up for that! Happy Christmas everyone!


wow!!!! james, i was quite surprised by the 'words' you've used to describe alonso's move.. :O ... grt!!! i ve been fan of alonso..... i kind of had this notion that british hate alonso but now looks like 'u' dont??

Now ;), who do you think will be top 5 2010 drivers..... u may tell 'until testing....?'... just list ur top..ones ur heart feels should top the list??

BTW ... Merry cristmas and happy new year to you .ur family and everyone here 😀


4. Alonso’s press briefing in Suzuka when he could finally talk about joining Ferrari after almost a year of saying “Wait and see”. There is a thrilling energy about these landmark press conferences and you sensed that this was a big moment – a great champion signing for Ferrari, the start of a new era.

Agree with you James,though few people here talking about this moment.

First time I read your blog when 09 season was already finished.But I know I will come here everyday.Thank you for all your job and look forward to 2010 and beyond.

Happy New Year!


From Beijing


Happy Christmas James and thanks for the blog.


Merry Christmas to you too James! 🙂 hope you are back in the commentary box soon!


Merry Christmas James, thanks for the book, it was great.


godson of Josie


Well done James! Seasons greetings and

Looking foward to a classic new year of F1


Merry Christmas James,

And many thanks for this insightfull blog. Definitely the best new F1-website in 2009. Keep up the good work.



Funnily enough james, two of those were in my top 5.

As a jb fan, that first day test when I saw the times was just amazing. I decided then to take a punt on jb for the world championship. Just a fiver as thought "what if they are genuine!"

my other fav moments were jenson winning at Monaco and mark webbers first win.

Wishing you and your family a great Christmas and an excellent 2010!


James, You are my new Go-To F1 site, every day just to get the latest word from the pen of an expert.

Finished your book a few days ago and was disappointed I could not pace myself so that it filled a bigger gap than it did, got to wait until march and it already feels like a long time...


Paige Michael-Shetley

Agree wholeheartedly on number one, James. I'd like to think that moments on the track are the ones we should cherish, and the test that confirmed Brawn's pace probably had us buzzing for longer than any other on-track moment this year.

On some level, though, I don't think we should be all that surprised. Honda started developing the car so early, and it was the first car that Brawn could fully influence.


By a distance the best place for Formula One ANALYSIS, rather than simply news. A superb site. James - thank you, and Merry Christmas. =)


Thank you very much james for choosing my top 5 as one of your top 5!

it's been a fabulous f1 year for me, and i hope next year is every bit as good, and maybe even better.

all the best for new year, and if i see you in melbourne i'll be sure to say hello!



Hi James

Is it a reflection of the fact that the quality of racing was not perhaps as great as in other years, like 2008, that none of your top 5 are actual moments in races?!!! You mention Fisi's pole, and that it was a great motor race, but apart from that you've chosen moments at a test day, friday morning, a press briefing....!!

merry christmas and happy new year.


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