7 of the Best Formula One Races of All Time

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The best Formula One races of all time involve drama, a stroke of good luck, weather impact, and flawless team strategy. Some of these races have been championship deciders, leading to unexpected comebacks, winners or losers. If you’re looking for the best F1 races, we’ve made a list to keep you on the edge of your seat.

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2011 Canadian Grand Prix

7 of the Best Formula One Races of All Time
2011 Canadian Grand Prix. Source: Wikimedia licensed by  CC-BY-SA-2.0

The 2011 Canadian Grand Prix was one of the best Formula One races of all time. It went down in history as the longest F1 race, taking 4 hours, 4 minutes, and 39 seconds. Former McLaren’s Jenson Button’s collision with his teammate Lewis Hamilton saw him receive a penalty for breaking the speed limits behind a safety car and a puncture. The Brit driver overcame all this to win a race that is undoubtedly one of the best in history.

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2012 Brazilian Grand Prix

7 of the Best Formula One Races of All Time
Start of the 2012 Brazilian Grand Prix. Source: Wikimedia licensed by CC-BY-SA-2.0

This has to be one of the best F1 title-deciding races. Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso went into the race with a 13-point gap between them. It looked as though Alonso would come out victorious after Vettel dropped to 20th in the opening lap. 

However, he battled through the field and finished 6th, below the Spaniard, but still enough to win him a third championship.

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2012 Spanish Grand Prix

Was there a race that produced a more shocking result than the 2012 Spanish Grand Prix? Pastor Maldonado won what is now one of the best races of the 2010s. The drama began even before the race started as Hamilton was disqualified for lacking enough fuel. 

This should have opened the door for Ferrari and Spanish driver Fernando Alonso but Maldonado remained competitive and put down a masterclass to win the race. For this reason, it’s one of the best Formula One races of all time.

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2012 European Grand Prix

The street circuit in Valencia gave Fernando Alonso one of his most impressive victories. He started on 5th but dropped to 11th after his team’s errors. However, the Spaniard battled through the field, and with other circumstances favoring him – Sebastian Vettel, the race leader, retired and Hamilton had pit stop issues – he raced home to the chequered flag. 

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2014 Bahrain Grand Prix

7 of the Best Formula One Races of All Time
2014 Formula 1 Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix. Source: Wikimedia licensed by CC-BY-SA-2.0

The duel in the desert produced the goods. The rivalry between Hamilton and Nico Rosberg overshadowed the event, as had been the case with their rivalry. Hamilton and Rosberg gave fans a memorable performance that saw them battle wheel-to-wheel. 

The rest of the field also produced thrilling duels and eventually, Hamilton won one of the best F1 races.

2016 Monaco Grand Prix

This is one of the best F1 races to have taken place in Monaco and one of the most spectacular races in the rain. Having started the race on pole, Daniel Riccardo pulled away from the Mercedez of Hamilton and Rosberg. 

The big change came when he pitted for fresh tyres, only for confusion in the pits to slow him down and see Hamilton take the lead of the race. During the closing stages, a little bit of rain threatened to add drama, but Hamilton sealed the victory, much to Ricciardo’s disappointment.

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2017 Azerbaijan Grand Prix

This was an action-packed race which is why it’s one of the best Formula One races of all time. Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel, Valtteri Bottas and Esteban Ocon, and Sergio Perez all came together. 

Ocon’s collision was so bad that it caused the race to be stopped. The race is said to be one of the best on the calendar, especially after underwhelming displays in other circuits over the years.  

If you’re an avid fan of the sport, you’d remember some of these races. For a sport accused of eliminating its competitive edge, you can get your adrenaline pumping once again by rewatching the best Formula One races of all time.  

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