3. 2007 European Grand Prix

Alonso came into the 2007 season as the defending champion after switching to McLaren in the same year. Prior to this race, he was already 12 points behind his rookie teammate Lewis Hamilton in the drivers’ championship. Alonso qualified on 2nd position behind Kimi Raikkonen’s Ferrari while Hamilton was on 10th due to an accident in qualifying.

The race started with Hamilton moving into 6th position by the first corner but a subsequent crash punctured his rear wheel. What followed was absolute chaos as the torrential rain resulted in five drivers being thrown out of the race and the race being red flagged.

Felipe Massa leading Fernando Alonso at the 2007 European Grand Prix
Felipe Massa leading Fernando Alonso at the 2007 European Grand Prix

The race was restarted with Hamilton a lap down, which increased Alonso’s hope of eating into Hamilton’s championship lead. Massa led the race comfortably ahead of Alonso for almost the entire race after Raikkonen retired due to mechanical problems. But another downpour ten laps prior to the finish forced everyone into the pits. From there on, Massa and Alonso fought tooth and nail for the first position with both the drivers locking wheel to wheel, until a daring maneuver by Alonso on lap 56 when he passed Massa on the outside of turn five. Thus, this dramatic race marked Alonso’s first win under wet conditions and cut down Hamilton’s lead to two points in the drivers’ championship. The nerves of steel needed to win this race is why it is one of Fernando Alonso’s top 5 races.

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