2006 Formula 1 season review

Here is how I voted in the F1 Racing magazine awards.

  • Pit crew of the year: Ferrari
  • Most improved team of the year: BMW Sauber — Undoubtedly the surprise package of the year. In some races — notably at Monza — this was probably the second fastest car!
  • Team principal of the year: Flavio Briatore (Renault) — What a colourful character, and what a great job he’s done at Renault over the past four years
  • Drive of the year: Kimi Räikkönen, P22 to P3, Bahrain — Kimi is quite good at making his way through the field. This effort at Bahrain was particularly impressive
  • Start of the year: Fernando Alonso, P7 to P3, Malaysia — Watch the way Alonso overtakes those two Williams cars into turn one. He makes it look so effortless.
  • Overtaking manoeuvre of the year: Fernando Alonso on Jenson Button for P1, lap 4 (restart), Australia — On the restart you are not allowed to overtake until you have passed the start / finish line. Alonso times this move perfectly. I remember watching this and enjoying it so much
  • Car of the year: Renault R26 — Even with the FIA trying its best to ban all of the good bits, the Renault R26 was still the class of the field
  • Driver of the year: Fernando Alonso — Michael Schumacher might have been impressive, but it’s difficult to argue against Alonso being the fastest driver in the world currently
  • Qualifier of the year: Kimi Räikkönen — In an average car, Kimi has pulled a few impressive laps out of the bag from nowhere, and he’s had more than a few great grid slots
  • Rookie of the year: Robert Kubica — Rosberg was impressive to start with, but he completely tailed off. Kubica, on the other hand, had an extremely impressive race to make the podium at the Italian Grand Prix. He made Heidfeld look plain.
  • Friday driver of the year: Robert Kubica — I’ve not seen much Friday action of course, but Kubica seemed impressive enough
  • Personality of the year: Flavio Briatore
  • Technical director of the year: Bob Bell (Renault)
  • Man of the year: Fernando Alonso

A special mention, too, for Alonso’s first few laps at the Hungarian Grand Prix. Simply incredible.


  1. As you say, Alonso’s first lap and Hungary deserved a special mention. I love the way Alonso took Massa in the penultimate corner around the outside, almost (maybe did) made contact and then stuck it up the inside for the final turn – incredible stuff. It reminded me of Senna’s first lap at Donington Park in 1993.

    (Senna’s aforementioned lap, set to a cheesy arrangement of Wind Beneath My Wings for Piano and Oboe!)

  2. Schumacher had a fuel pressure problem during qualifying, so had to start 10th. He was fighting for position with Fisichella when he got a puncture from debris left by Rosberg’s crash. From dead last, Schumacher fought his way back to 4th, but of course that wasn’t enough. Alonso finished second. Massa won from pole.