F1 Fanatic’s 50 best articles of 2010

2010 F1 season review

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Anthony Davidson, Keith Collantine, 2010

F1 Fanatic enjoyed its busiest ever year in 2010 with twice as many visitors as last year reading thousands of articles.

After much thought I’ve hand-picked a selection of my favourite interviews, features, comment pieces and more from the past 12 months.

Here’s my 50 favourites – plus a couple of bonus extras.


Driving the F1 simulator which gives teams "the best way to cheat"

“Racing drivers are very sensitive to car behaviour, and if we set the simulator up to be as realistic as possible the average person wouldn’t feel an awful lot of movement.”

Top ten?? Ways to finish an F1 race

“In all 13 of the classified finishers crashed in the downpour, including the occupants of second, third, fourth and fifth places: Carlos Pace, Jody Scheckter, James Hunt and Mark Donohue.”


Going to an F1 race in 2010? Read these top tips from F1 fans first

“Bring an umbrella and raincoat – even if you’re in the covered stands. The covered stands leak now (and you’ll need the raincoat for that). And you’ll need the umbrella to get to the bus or cab that will bring you home.”

Are F1 ticket prices really too high?

“Tickets for the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa this year peak at 576 ($900) for the final. Assuming the match finishes without extra time, that’s 6.40 per minute.”


Schumacher’s return: what’s changed?

“In 2006 F1 drivers still enjoyed the benefit of traction control. That was banned in F1 in 2008. The good news for fans is that we’ll now get to see the most successful driver of all time manipulating the car’s throttle all on his own, without a computer cutting in to help him out. And that’s exactly the way it should be.”

Why F1 doesn’t need the 107% rule

“The 107% rule is a bad rule. It harms the sport and it harms small teams like HRT for which every minute of track running and every second of television exposure they can get is precious. Throwing them out of a race weekend when they’ve already gone to the huge expense of flying to Bahrain or Malaysia only makes it even harder for them to compete in the future.”


Why low profile tyres make sense for F1

“Tyre warm-up would be quicker, allowing the governing body to finally get rid of tyre warmers, something other single-seater categories did a long time ago to put more emphasis on driver skill.”

While F1 dithers over KERS, road car hybrid technology leaves it behind

“Even if the teams took advantage of the F1 rules allowing KERS they would only be allowed to develop 80bhp and use it for 6.7 seconds per lap. It’s a graphic illustration of how F1 now lags behind the sort of technological development it used to lead.”

25 years since Ayrton Senna’s first F1 win: 1985 Portuguese GP flashback

“His maiden victory could not have been more emphatic. He took pole position, set fastest lap, led every lap and won the race. Alboreto was the only other driver to complete the race distance of 67 laps – shortened from 70 under the two-hour time limit – and even Mansell in fifth place was two laps behind.”

The rise and fall of Williams

“If you tuned into an F1 race for the first time this year you wouldn’t suspect the blue-and-white cars mired in the midfield once were the sport’s most feared competitors.”

Silverstone boss explains why they didn’t use Tilke for Arena track upgrades

“We’ve had good, solid input from riders and drivers – people who are not going to wreck what is already a fantastic circuit. If we had gone a more traditional route we may not have got the best result.”

Silverstone opens new Arena circuit, expects cars to hit 185mph at Abbey

“Red Bull estimate F1 cars will hit 185mph through the two fast corners which direct them off the old track.”


Lucas di Grassi says Virgin can catch the midfield teams (Interview)

“I think sometimes they should not always go very safe and only do slow corners, they should do more fast corners.”

Glock says turn eight is "nothing special" and blue flags need to stay (Interview)

“By the time Toyota pulled out we had already homologated our chassis. So there was not even a chance to buy it. Because they pulled out so late, for us it was not possible to use their car.”

Should Tilke be kept away from Austin?

“If Bernie Ecclestone points at an industrial estate in Valencia and says ‘put a track there’, there’s very little Tilke can do within the constraint of his brief and the rules to create the next Spa-Francorchamps or even an Istanbul Park.”

Hopefully the 2010 Turkish Grand Prix won’t be the last one

“While there’s little to commend the dreary circuits built for F1 in Abu Dhabi and Valencia in recent years, losing Istanbul Park from the F1 calendar would be a genuine shame.”

The FIA’s badly-written rules leave Formula 1 looking stupid once again

“[Damon] Hill is too obvious and too easy a scapegoat. The rules are at fault, and not for the first time.”

When backmarkers strike in Monaco

“This year for the first time since 1995 there are 24 F1 cars on the streets of Monaco. Drivers – especially the leaders – will have to have their wits about them not to get caught up in accidents or lose time in qualifying. It’s all part of the great challenge of Monaco. Those drivers and teams who have been complaining about it this year should remember F1 is racing, not just driving as fast as possible in isolation from your competitors.”

Michael Schumacher still refuses to explain 2006 Rascasse controversy

In his first Monaco Grand Prix since the notorious Rascasse episode in 2006, Michael Schumacher was still reluctant to explain what he had done. Lewis Hamilton offered his thoughts on Schumacher’s reputation:

To be potentially tainted by something like that would be really devastating for me. That is definitely something I don’t want to be remembered for.
Lewis Hamiton


A brilliant race in Turkey shows F1 is on the right track

“The great strength of the refuelling ban is it forces drivers to to fight for their wins on the track.”

The track they should build in Austin

“Gimmicks like pit tunnels and hotel bridges won’t be good enough. F1 in America needs something truly special and different.”

1993 South African Grand Prix flashback

“On the day after the 1993 race its promoter Mervyn Key was arrested.”

Did running low on fuel give Lewis Hamilton pole position? No.

“Hamilton’s missing kilo would have cost him 0.025 seconds. Hamilton beat Webber to pole position by 0.268 seconds, so it doesn’t look like the missing fuel had much of an effect at all.”

If Montezemolo is that offended by ‘slow’ cars, why didn’t he complain in 2006?

“Kovalainen was 2.3 seconds slower than the fastest car in Q1 on Sunday. Go back to the same race four years ago and the two Super Aguris were 3.7 seconds off the pace. Yet Montezemolo didn’t get quite so worked up about them.”

Helmet-cam video lap of Fiorano with Fernando Alonso in the Ferrari F10

“If only we saw pictures like this during races instead of the flat and unexciting onboard footage we’re used to.”

Did Hamilton try to stop Alonso getting in front of the safety car? (Video)

“Perhaps Hamilton hesitated because he wasn’t sure whether he was allowed to pass the safety car as it was in the pit lane. But given his words in the press conference, it seems he was aware of the rule concerning the safety car line. Alternatively, perhaps he was fully aware of his obligations under the rules and chose to slow down to hold up the Ferraris, hoping he could get ahead of the safety car but they could not. If that was his plan, it backfired, because he failed to get over the safety car line before the safety car did.”

FIA must learn from Valencia shambles

“There’s no reason to believe Ferrari’s claim that the European Grand Prix was somehow ‘manipulated’.”


Goodwood Festival of Speed 2010 – massive 300-picture gallery

“Over 300 pictures of F1 cars in our comprehensive galleries featuring Lewis Hamilton, Jenson Button, Mika Hakkinen, Emerson Fittipaldi, John Sutrees and more in over 50 different Formula 1 cars.”

Why Grosjean deserves another F1 shot

“Over his seven appearances Grosjean was, on average, 0.667% slower than Alonso on their fastest laps. In his ten appearances to date Petrov has been 1.013% slower than Kubica.”

25 years today: Rosberg’s record lap

“In the days before electronic timing and video walls at every corner of the circuit, there was a pause after Rosberg crossed the line before confirmation came that the 160 miles per hour barrier had been broken.”


A move too far: Schumacher forces stewards to take a stand

“There was only one thing more shocking than Michael Schumacher’s move on Rubens Barrichello in the closing stages of the Hungarian Grand Prix. It was the announcement a few hours later that he was being punished for it.”

The drivers who defied team orders

“Here are three drivers who refused to let their team mates pass – or overtook them when they weren’t supposed to. Food for thought for Felipe Massa?”

"We need to make Abbey quicker" – how Populous redesigned Silverstone (Part 1)
Silverstone’s architects on making F1 circuits challenging but safe (Part 2)

“And then there’s encouraging overtaking – the Holy Grail! That means allowing a differential in speeds and creating alternative lines.”

"Formula 1 is a closed book in my mind" – Anthony Davidson (Interview)

“I think you do see [technical diversity] in Formula 1 still, it’s just in a very clever way and a secretive way. It’s not as apparent as in sports cars – F1 cars all look similar and sound similar, because they’re all governed by the rules very heavily.”


Barrichello’s 300 races: interactive stats

Rubens Barrichello reached a landmark 300 F1 races at the Belgian Grand Prix last weekend.”

40 years today: Rindt killed at Monza

“These were the early days of wings in Formula 1 and teams often removed them at Monza to ensure maximum straight-line speed. Rindt was running his 72 in such a configuration when he crashed at Parabolica.”

"F1 2010???: The Formula 1 game made by F1 fanatics (Interview, Part 1)
"F1 2010???: The Formula 1 game made by F1 fanatics (Interview, Part 2)

“I’ve always felt that, certainly in the past few years, F1 games have been made by people that were just tasked with getting an F1 game out. Whereas Paul and I – we love watching Formula 1 and we understand the things that I love about Formula 1 and why people get into it.”

10 reasons why more than 10,000 people follow F1 Fanatic on Twitter

F1 Fanatic broke the 10,000 followers mark on Twitter in September and now has over 12,000.


Mercedes admit missed opportunity to keep Schumacher in front of Rosberg

“It’s obviously much easier to work out what should have been done after the race with the benefit of all the knowledge available than to get the decision right in the heat of the moment. As it turned out, Buemi did not pit until five laps after Schumacher came in, and the strategists did not know that at the time.”

He’s 14 points behind but Vettel should be leading the championship by 59

“Vettel has had the worst of both worlds. Car failures in the first two races alone cost him 35 points and two wins. But he has made some high-profile mistakes as well.”

20 years since Senna took out Prost at Suzuka

“What drove Senna to commit one of the most outrageous acts ever witnessed in Formula 1? His frustration with the sport’s governing body – Balestre the focus of his fury – combined with a growing sense of desperation that the championship was slipping away from him.”

Jackie Stewart interview: "I was fortunate to race in my era"
Jackie Stewart interview: "Drivers of today are best since my day"

“In 1968 we had four consecutive months where someone died, in the same weekend of each month. Jim Clark in April, Mike Spence in May, Ludovico Scarfiotti in June and Jo Schlesser in July. The Nurburgring race that year was on the same weekend in August. And the first question I asked Ken [Tyrrell] when I got out of the car was "Is everybody alright?"


The problems with a two-tier championship

“The teams may spend the money and build the cars, but it’s the drivers who take the risk of driving them. Felipe Massa knows this all too well – the German Grand Prix was the first anniversary of his horror crash at the Hungaroring. Why, one might reasonably ask, should a driver like Massa be expected to risk his life to help Alonso win a world championship?”

Nico Hulkenberg has arrived

“[Pastor] Maldonado certainly impressed in GP2 this year, his fourth season in the category, with six consecutive feature race wins. But when he and Hulkenberg were team mates last year Hulkenberg romped to the title in his rookie season while Maldonado amassed barely one-third of his team mate’s points total.”

Sebastian Vettel becomes youngest ever F1 champion

“At 23 years and 134 days old he has broken the record set by Lewis Hamilton in 2008, who won the title aged 23 years, 301 days.”

How Yas Marina could be changed to aid overtaking

“This exclusive image produced for F1 Fanatic by the architects who designed Silverstone’s ‘Arena’ extension show how a revised Yas Marina track could look.”


2010 F1 season DVD "Sebastian’s coming of age" reviewed

“What’s offered here is all good quality material and the package is pretty good value. The lack of an HD version is a major weakness, however – hopefully that will finally be addressed in 2011.”

"Senna" – the Ayrton Senna movie reviewed

“Quite simply it’s the greatest film about motor racing I have ever seen.”

More from F1 Fanatic

“What about guest articles?” I hear you ask. They’ll be covered in another article tomorrow.

Have you got a favourite F1 Fanatic article from this year that’s not mentioned above? What would you like to see more of in 2011? Have your say in the comments.

2010 F1 season review

Browse all 2010 F1 season review articles

Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

Got a potential story, tip or enquiry? Find out more about RaceFans and contact us here.

16 comments on “F1 Fanatic’s 50 best articles of 2010”

  1. Oops…spent my Christmas evening with a whisky and 3 hours of F1 reminiscing! Still, the rest of the family is all asleep anyway! Thanks for a great year and all the best for a better 2011!

  2. Nice Articles! Bravo

  3. I really enjoyed Jackie Stewart interview. I would like to see more interviews of some great driver from the past like Prost, Mansell, Piquet & many others WC from the past. Keith if you can try to have Kimi in the hot sit, don’t know how long will that interview last.

    1. Kimi might just end up giving one word answers =P

      1. No dude, Kimi would just be like, “I gotta take a ****”. Gotta love that guys interviews!

  4. Jackie’s interview was superb. It’s always great to listen to him, so, for me, it was the most pleasant reading this year around here :).

  5. top work Keith, the site rocks…. i am sure i contribute many of the visits – check the stats from AU!
    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year..2011 season is going to be great…

  6. Dan_the_McLaren_fan
    26th December 2010, 11:50

    The article I will probably never forget is the emotionnal interview of Jackie Stewart, espcially when he was talking about F1 in the 70s and how dangerous it was. I would really like to see more interviews like that!

  7. Must have been hard to pick only 50… all your articles are very nice to read!

  8. My favorite article was the recap of the 1990 Japanese GP. I hoped to find a link to the behind-the-scenes testing article you had written before the start of the season. That was one of the 2 best articles for me this year. But apparently, you don’t consider that your top work :P. If possible, can you put the link of that article here?

    1. Ah yes – here it is:


      (I did a search for ‘Farmville’ to find it!)

  9. Great articles that have links to more great articles, which have links… Why are there only 24 hours in a day? Thanks Keith, and a merry Christmas while it lasts.

  10. My favourite was the Bahrain race preview. I still remember it. All the talk about Schumacher. All the talk about the new teams. Never have I felt more excited for a curtain raiser than that article.

    Cheers Keith, you do an amazing job.

  11. Keith – I am amazed at the sheer volume of articles you produce in a season without loss of quality or clarity. Thank you and continue to have a wonderful Christmas Holiday.

  12. I only really got into F1 this season but have found this site to be a fantastic source of information. You have a wonderful sense of community here, Keith and I have enjoyed reading your articles and the responses they produce.

    So, thanks and keep up the good work!

  13. Returning online after a sort of break over Christmas due to guests and such, it is great to find this summary of 50 great articles you produced this year Keith. A great mix of looking into the past of F1, following current developments and of investigative journalism and analysis answering important F1 questions that fans like to bicker about.

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