After the Chinese Grand Prix, I tweeted through to SkySportsF1, "You are only as good as your last race. Everyone saying Vettel was the best ever last year... where are those voices now? #skyf1." Clearly I tempted fate and seeing Vettel back on the top step in Bahrain was probably expected. Superstition aside, we are four races in, and four different drivers in four different cars have won a race. 2012 looks set to be a terrific season. This is part one of my season review: The F1 Fifthly Report.
Best Drive: Sergio Perez, Malaysian Grand Prix
It has been a while since we have had a surprise win by the underdog and whilst we still await that specific result, Sergio came mightily close. It was great to see a Sauber hunting down a Ferrari, and although the Ferrari in 2012 is hardly a masterpiece of engineering it was great all the same.
Best Race: Chinese Grand Prix
I cannot remember seeing a race where with under 10 laps to go you had 11 drivers (3rd to 13th) nose to tail. Kimi Raikkonen showed you could go from hero to zero in one lap! It was also the first win for Nico Rosberg - clearly the most deserved Grand Prix winner on the grid.
Best TV coverage: Sky
Okay, I know the BBC have only had one race live this year, but so far, Sky are winning in terms of overall coverage. The actual live feed is identical and commentary will always be personal preference (I've always longed for Crofty and Brundle) but Sky have brought a new depth with their iPad and Red Button features. The weekly show could do with some development - it seems very light on content at the moment outside of what you can read on daily F1 websites, but the TV schedules now have a weekly F1 show. Thank you.
Best Facial Hair: Fernando Alonso
Now that Nick Heidfeld (aka the fourth BeeGee) has left F1, the best facial hair now has to be awarded to someone else. Lewis Hamilton has some dodgy lined beard going on, but it has to be Alonso. Sideburns that don't actually join up, and the bit of fluff on his lower lip?! Sadly he looked in a mirror prior to Bahrain as that bit of fluff had gone... It might make a return though!
Disappointment: A few...
Mercedes: Yes they won a race, but I was expecting more - especially from Schumacher.
Caterham: Year three for the team, and still no sign of them being able to score a point.
McLaren pitstops: Sort it out!
Surprise so far: Kimi Raikkonen
Even though I thought Kimi Raikkonen would thrive in a car not destined for too much glory, I didn't expect him to do so quite so early in the season. He could have won in Bahrain, and I expect him to be on the pace in Spain. The Iceman is back! (I can't believe I just said that).
Must do better: Georgie Thompson (Sky)
Georgie Thompson. Who doesn't like GT? But she needs to be given more to do than just be a question master for Ant Davidson. She is clearly the newbie to F1, so Sky need to play on that and use it as a way to explain F1 to the newbies in the TV audience.
Awkward Moment: Bernie Ecclestone
Bernie being asked whether he'll be in Bahrain. A true classic Bernie moment!
Most amusing: Sky vs. BBC
The continual on-screen battle of Sky vs. BBC. Who gets the interview first? Getting out of camera views from the opposing televised coverage. I hope at the last race we get a Jake Humphrey and Simon Lazenby interview!
In summary though, F1 2012 looks set to be a very open championship. We've had four race winners so far and drivers such as Lewis Hamilton and Mark Webber are not in that list of four. Kimi could win this year, and Michael Schumacher must surely break his winning drought. So many more questions are to be answered this year, and there are still 16 races to go...
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