Re: Who is your favorite Top 10 player of 2012 season?
I think you'll find that most of those who voted for Sam last year haven't yet voted this year. At a quick glance only a handful at most have shifted their preferences to another player. Sam actually has a very loyal fanbase, most of whom avoid GM like the plague. A lot made an exception last year after her USO win.
I haven't looked closely but I think something similar probably applies to Petra. There was definitely more of a bandwagon effect in her case, but I get the impression she's still reasonably popular. It's just that her fans don't frequent GM as much as those of some other players.