Formula 1 is known for its thrill, speed, and intense competition. One of the most exciting parts is overtakes in Formula 1, watching your favourite driver make a skilful and daring pass on their opponent is a sight to behold. Throughout the history of the sport, there have been many memorable overtakes. Here, we take a look at the top 5 overtakes in Formula 1 history.
Gilles Villeneuve vs. Rene Arnoux, 1979 French Grand Prix
This is the most famous overtaking battle in Formula 1 history. At the 1979 French Grand Prix, Villeneuve and Arnoux engaged in an epic duel for second place.
They swapped positions several times as they fought tooth and nail for every inch of the track. The two drivers made contact twice during the battle, but they continued to push each other to their limits.
The fight ended with Villeneuve pulling off a daring move around the outside of Arnoux at the fast right-hander called the “Virage du Pont”.
It was an incredible display of skill and bravery and is considered one of the greatest overtakes of all time.
Michael Schumacher vs. Mika Hakkinen, 2000 Belgian Grand Prix
This iconic overtake took place at the 2000 Belgian Grand Prix, between two of the greatest drivers in the history of Formula 1.
Michael Schumacher, driving for Ferrari, and Hakkinen, driving for McLaren, were battling for the lead when they approached a backmarker.
Schumacher seized his chance and made a bold move on the outside of Hakkinen at the Pouhon corner.
The move was gutsy and daring, but Schumacher managed to pull it off and take the lead.
It was a thrilling moment that showcased the incredible skill and competitive fire of both drivers.
Ayrton Senna vs. Alain Prost, 1988 Japanese Grand Prix
The rivalry between Senna and Prost is one of the most storied in Formula 1 history.
The two drivers had many battles on the track, but their duel at the 1988 Japanese Grand Prix is one of the most iconic.
Senna needed to win the race to stay in contention for the championship, but Prost got the better start and took the lead.
Senna relentlessly pursued his rival and finally managed to get alongside him at the chicane.
The two drivers made contact, with Senna ultimately coming out on top. It was a controversial move that gave Senna the win and the championship, but it was also one of the most exciting overtakes in Formula 1 history.
Fernando Alonso vs. Schumacher, 2005 San Marino Grand Prix
This overtaking manoeuvre is a masterclass in patience and precision. Schumacher had been leading the race at Imola when Fernando Alonso, driving for Renault, caught up to him.
For several laps, Alonso closely followed Schumacher, looking for an opportunity to make a pass.
Finally, he saw his chance and dove down the inside of the German driver at the Tosa hairpin. It was a brilliantly executed move that showcased the skill and strategy necessary to make a successful overtake in Formula 1.
Kimi Raikkonen vs. Giancarlo Fisichella, 2005 Japanese Grand Prix
This overtake is memorable not only for the quality of the move but also for the fact that it was made in the wet.
Raikkonen, driving for McLaren, was chasing Fisichella, driving for Renault, when the heavens opened and the track became slick and treacherous.
Raikkonen continued to push and eventually managed to outsprint Fisichella down the straight.
He then made a daring move around the outside at the 130R corner, showing incredible bravery in the slippery conditions.
It was a move that demonstrated Raikkonen’s superb car control and tactical awareness.
Overtakes in Formula 1
In conclusion, the history of Formula 1 is replete with iconic overtakes. These are just a few of the most memorable, but there are countless others that have thrilled fans over the years.
From daring passes to epic battles, Formula 1’s overtaking manoeuvres are the stuff of legend.
Let us know what are your favourite overtakes in Formula 1.