The Driven Blog F1 Awards 2012

IT’S TIME TO hand out the gongs at The Driven Blog’s 2012 F1 Awards.

So there it is then, with more ups and downs than Alton Towers and with more twists and turns than a twisty turny thing, the 2012 F1 season has come to an end. And it’s that young German who has come out on top again in his fizzy drink powered Neweymobile. But, as you’re about to find out, there were other winners this year too.

Best new thing
This award celebrates the best things that were introduced to the world of F1 this year. The runners-up are:
– The Circuit of the Americas
– Sky F1

And the winner is…

McLaren’s fantastic new series of short animated films starring Jenson, Lewis and a few McLaren stars of past, present and future has not only showed the fun side of the team but opened them and F1 as a whole up to a new audience. They’re also very funny and fantastically animated by Framestore.

Scariest moment
This award is for the moment that gave us the biggest fright this year.
The runners-up are:
– Kobayashi runs over his pitcrew at Silverstone
– Rosberg gets airborne over Karthikeyan in Abu Dhabi
– First corner crash at Spa
And the winner is…

Williams garage fire after the Spanish Grand Prix
Anyone watching the post race coverage will have seen the moment the cameras cut away from interviews to the frightening scene of an enormous fire in the Williams pit garage. The images may be scary but it was a reminder of just how safe the F1 world is because nobody was seriously hurt. Well done to all those who helped. Watch the video below of Ted Kravitz recounting the incident and explaining what happened.

Daftest moment
This award is for that moment that we could’t quite believe had actually happened.
The runners-up are:
– Maldonado crashes into Perez on purpose in Monaco free practice
– Schumacher crashes into Vergne in Singapore

– Fans told to stay at home because of flooded car parks at Silverstone
And the winner is…

Grosjean causes first corner pile-up at Spa
Also a nominee for scariest moment because we were so close to losing Fernando Alonso in this crash. Grosjean displayed a spectacular lack of spatial awareness in the run-up to the La Source, colliding with Lewis Hamilton and causing the biggest crash of 2012. Not only did it also probably cost Alonso the championship but it also potentially cost Sauber another podium and fifth in the constructors table. Grosjean was handed a one race ban.

Funniest moment
This award is the moment that had us laughing the most this year.
The runners-up are:
– Kimi Raikkonen swearing on the podium in Abu Dhabi
– Kimi Raikkonen gets lost and drives out of the track in Brazil
– Kimi Raikkonen “Leave me alone I know what I’m doing” radio in Abu Dhabi

And the winner is…

The world’s worst high-five at the US Grand Prix
After seeing Lewis Hamilton overtake Sebastian Vettel for the lead of the US Grand Prix in Austin, these two fans decided to attempt that most American of celebrations; the high-five. Unfortunately their hand-eye coordination was lacking and their exceptional moment of failure was broadcast around the world in wonderful high definition and glorious slow-motion. Well done chaps.

Best moment
This award is quite simply for the moment we enjoyed the most this year.
The runners-up are:
– Maldonado wins for Williams in Spain
– Perez finishes second for Sauber in Malaysia
– Schumacher gets pole postion for Mercedes in Monaco (sort of)
And the winner is…

Kimi Raikkonen wins for Lotus in Abu Dhabi
After Michael Schumacher’s less-than-impressive return to F1, some questioned Raikkonen’s decision to make a comeback. He impressed straight away though, showing that he had lost none of his speed or racecraft. The couple of podiums he had already scored were enough to make for a successful return but victory in Abu Dhabi really was the icing on The Iceman’s cake. Or should that be ice cream?

Team of the year
This award is for the team that we think did the best job in 2012.
The runners-up are:
– Williams Turned a disastrous 2011 into a race-winning 2012.
– Sauber Became podium finishers on a smaller budget than rivals.
– Lotus The most consistent car of the year, scored many podiums and a race win.
And the winner is…

Red Bull
They started the year with a decidedly lacklustre car but, with the genius of Adrian Newey, managed to catch and overtake their rivals with in-season developments culminating in a dominant end of the season and both the drivers and constructors championships in their pocket. Great pitstops, strategy and teamwork helped them along the way and the only reliability issues came from a dodgy alternator supplied by Renault.

Driver of the year
This award is for the driver who we think has done the best job in 2012.
The runners-up are:
– Nico Hulkenberg Beat his teammate on a regular basis and could have won in Brazil.
– Sergio Perez Scored multiple podiums and proved himself to be a great racer.
– Kimi Raikkonen Comeback year proved he still has what it takes to be a champ again.
And the winner is…

Fernando Alonso
To finish second in the drivers championship, just three point behind the winner, in a car that wasn’t the fastest is no mean feat. To do it in a car that at many times this year wasn’t even the third or fourth fastest is nothing short of spectacular. But that just about sums Fernando Alonso up. He can extract the maximum and then some from any car, he’s a fantastic overtaker and strategist too. He is the most complete driver in F1 today.

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