top 10: f1 wet races

Everyone loves a bit of rain to spice up an f1 race

4y ago

There's nothing quite like an F1 race when race takes its toll. Whether it's chucking it down for every lap of the race or changing conditions causing differences in strategy, plenty of wet races regularly feature in people's favourite races of all time. Here's our Top 10.

10) 2007 european grand prix

The start of the 2007 European GP staged at the Nurburgring was absolutely crazy. Thanks to sudden heavy rain on lap 1, everyone found themselves on the wrong tyre with the exception of Markus Winkelhock in his Spyker. The first few laps were filled with incidents, and with everyone pitting around him, Winkelhock found himself with a 33 second lead in his one and only F1 start!

The race was red flagged thanks to the conditions so Spyker lost the lead when the restart occurred, but this allowed for a great battle between Alonso and Massa which resulted in a brilliant overtake by Alonso going into Turn 5.

9) 2008 british grand prix

Lewis Hamilton has had many wins in his career, but this one may go down as one of his best. Unsurprisingly, the British weather was being reliably dreadful and everyone was forced to start on intermediate tyres. Even established drivers such as Raikkonen and Massa were making mistakes and spinning all over the place, but Hamilton put in a thoroughly impressive display in front of his home crowd.

The margin of victory over 2nd place Nick Heidfeld was the largest since the 1995 Australian GP. 3rd place went to Rubens Barrichello who showed tremendous pace towards the end of the race.

8) 1963 Belgian grand prix

Back in the early days of F1, Spa was known as a pretty dangerous circuit. Add a bit of rain and the word 'treacherous' comes to mind.

It was Graham Hill who claimed pole position, but he and the rest of the grid had no answer to Jim Clark who managed to grab the lead after the first lap despite only qualifying in 8th. From there, Clark put on a masterclass as he lapped every car other than Bruce McLaren.

54 years later and his win margin of 4 minutes 54 seconds is still a record. Considering all the factors, this performance by Clark may be the best of all time. Just to rub salt in the wounds of the other drivers, Clark didn't even really like Spa!

7) 2012 Brazilian grand prix

Everyone loves a championship decider and this battle in the Brazilian rain is no exception. Just 10 points separated championship rivals Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso and after Vettel spun on the opening lap it seemed as if Alonso would go on to win his third world title.

As the rain got heavier, a couple of safety cars played into Vettel's hands and he recovered to 6th place which was enough to win the championship as Alonso could only finish second behind Jenson Button. In all, the race had a record breaking 147 overtakes. The race is also notable for being Michael Schumacher's last.

6) 1993 european grand prix

It's proof that this is a solid list that this one comes in at number 6. Donington Park was the location for the 1993 European GP, to this day it's the only Grand Prix held at this circuit, but what a race it was.

It's most well known for the torrential conditions at the beginning of the race and Ayrton Senna cutting through the field in remarkable fashion. In one lap of brilliance, Senna overtook four drivers to claim the lead and went on to win by well over a minute. Prost finished third and had no fewer than 7 pit stops!

5) 1976 Japanese grand prix

The epic battle between Niki Lauda and James Hunt through the 1976 season is well documented, with the rain pouring down at the beginning of the race, Niki Lauda and others deemed the circuit to be too unsafe. This left Lauda's championship rival James Hunt needing at least 3rd to clinch the title.

In the wet, Hunt was unstoppable and for a long time it appeared as if he was on for an easy win, but as the circuit dried out he lost more and more time. He pitted and rejoined in P5, with just a few laps to go Hunt made 2 necessary overtakes to get back in to 3rd and win the title by a point.

4) 1998 belgian grand prix

This one gets a lot of love and with good reason. Whilst some on this list only had rain for parts of the race, this was a solid downpour that provided incredible entertainment. The start of the race featured one of the most famous crashes in F1 history with 13 drivers impacted. As a result the race was stopped.

The restart again involved several incidents and favourites such as Michael Schumacher and Mika Hakkinen were forced to retire. This left the two Jordans of Damon Hill and Ralf Schumacher to come home first and second. It was Jordan's first win and Hill's final win in F1.

3) 2008 brazilian grand prix

Such an epic race. Rain featured at both the beginning and end of this race and caused strategic calls that would determine the fate of the championship. Felipe Massa did absolutely everything he could in front of his home crowd as he secured the win, but it was Lewis Hamilton who would snatch the championship away on the final lap as he claimed the 5th place he needed.

Hamilton had spun as a result of the rain towards the end of the race which saw him fall behind Sebastian Vettel in the battle for 5th (Hamilton vs Vettel sounds like it could be a good fight for a title....). Fortunately for Hamilton, he wouldn't need to overtake Vettel as they both overtook Timo Glock who was struggling as he still had dry tyres on.

2) 1984 Monaco grand prix

I think it's fair to say that June 3 1984 was the day that two stars were born in the world of F1. The Monaco Grand Prix is always difficult, but when rain hits the circuit, it becomes that much more difficult. Alain Prost took his first pole for McLaren and led for most of the race.

However the race is most notable for the performance of Ayrton Senna, in his first race at Monaco he dragged an uncompetitive Toleman up from 13th on the grid to 2nd in a fascinating display of driving. Senna was quickly closing in on Prost but in controversial fashion the race was stopped after 31 laps when it was deemed to be too dangerous to continue.

Senna overtook Prost just before the line, but due to the rules it was the classification at the lap previous that counted. Whilst the race didn't even go half distance, the historical significance of this race is massive.

1) 2011 canadian grand prix

The longest race in F1 history may very well be the best. The race started behind the safety car and after peeling away would be called out again following a collision between Button and Hamilton. The race was then suspended, but on the restart Button would find himself in another incident as he attempted an overtake on Fernando Alonso. Alonso retired and Button was left in last.

And then came the incredible comeback as Button went all the way from last to first in just 30 laps. Partly due to perfect timing on strategy, partly due to some brilliant driving. One thing's for sure - it needs to be seen to be believed.

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Comments (8)

  • 2011 was the first time i'd seen a lot of things!

      4 years ago
  • Always a shame to not see Bellof mentioned when Monaco '84 comes up. Illegal car or not, he was fantastic just as well, coming from last on the grid to third at the time of the race being stopped.

      4 years ago
  • I absolutely agree with your countdown and I loved (and Thank god for dailymotion for having the 2011 Canadian GP online) the no#1. Still shows that Button was a top driver and not a second to Hamilton. But I am missing the 2016 Brazillian GP. Top class by Verstappen and a solid win from Hamilton with the most interesting overtakes and crashes in recent history.

      3 years ago
  • Am thankful to see 5 of those 10 races live at home.

      4 years ago
  • Great list, guys. I'd add in Monaco and Spain 96 as well. Also Suzuka 94, and that epic Adelaide race

      4 years ago