Formula 1 : Tom's Opinion
An F1 beginner summing up F1 the best he can
Okay, so I have recently been very into the world of Formula 1. I used to think it was just a sport of super high-performance race cars, restricted by safety and environmental limitation and driven by guys that have overly rich parents and only experience one overtake per season. But that is a very jealous outlook on the sport, since I have come to realise it is much better than that.
I was one of the many people that were captivated by the Netflix series of Drive to Survive. I watched it a few months after the second series had dropped and while it is very dramatic, I do believe that the drama lives up to the races when they aren’t documented behind the scenes. Yes, I am an amateur to this topic, I was not around in the days of Ayrton Senna, nor was I conscious of Formula 1 during the reign of Michael Schumacher, but I still consider myself a fan. Although, with that being said, I wish I was watching back in the days of the screaming V10s, but the Hybrid V6s will do, I guess.
Since this article is my opinion (yes, you don’t have to agree if you don’t want to), I wanted to break down my thoughts of what I’ve seen through the Netflix series and the portion of this season that I have watched.
Starting with drivers, I do have my favourites, like any honest person does and I have some less favourites. I’ll be honest with you guys, I’m not much of a person to take an irrational dislike to anyone, so I don’t dislike any of these drivers, just like them less. Comprende? Bien. Starting with an underdog, George Russell. I don’t know much of his background, but I do know that he has been somewhat ‘stuck’ in a slow car this season with the Williams team. I saw a fact a few weeks back (don’t quote me on this) that he has always outqualified his teammate. You may be thinking “Yeah, that’s the only thing he outqualified in that car!” and I would agree with you. We all know their car is not the greatest, which is why a future subtitle of this article will explain my thoughts on that, hopefully. Next is Charles Leclerc, who is also in a terrible car this year. He achieved his dream of driving for Ferrari, had a decent season in 2019 and that turned into some false hope for the next year. He had a very interesting and captivating past with his vengeance of his god father, Jules Bianchi, and the mental battle after the passing of his father. So, I’m afraid he is who a cheer for the most in a formula one race. Sorry, not very patriotic, I know. I won’t really touch on my “less favourites” just due to the fact I don’t want to be throwing any shade (since they’ll all definitely read this), so I’ll just say that all drivers can have flaws and make mistakes, but all is well if they learn from them and mature (cough cough number 33 in Drive to Survive season 1 cough cough).
Did you know that Mercedes have won a race this year? Crazy right? Totally. These past few seasons have shown that you don’t need to be fighting for the top spot to make thrilling entertainment. Which is good, since there hasn’t really been a fight for the top spot (especially this season). It is no big secret that Mercedes has won the odd race here and there, but it’s nice to have a team that is good at what they do and has really mastered their craft, right? Yes, to a degree. But it is nice to see a range of drivers taking those top spots, rather than seeing “HAM BOT VER” at the top every week. Take the Italian GP for example. The usual top three where out of the race and it made for a thrilling watch. We had two underdogs of Carlos Sainz and Pierre Gasly fighting for both of their first wins, with Sainz chasing down Gasly until the final lap, where he just couldn’t quite make the overtake before the chequered flag. But when you think it about it, it’s quite an unusual concept to be cheering when the best cars and drivers are out of the running for the top spots. If only there was a way of evening out the playing field.
What a good segue that was. Anyway, the budget cap I think will be great thing for Formula 1, assuming that all teams can reach that budget cap and not be too far under. I’m not certain of what exactly these budget limits are exactly (and I’m not going to try to quote from a possibly inaccurate source) but I do know that it will bring the field closer together. This will make it a bit more exciting to watch and add a bit more tension to see who wins, rather than our usual three. On top of this, I believe Netflix are doing a Drive to Survive for 2020 which should be interesting season to watch and should bring in more fans like myself to the sport. As well as the budget cap, in 2022, a new design for the cars will be in place following new restriction, meaning the cars can have closer battles on track, again making it more thrilling as a spectator sport. George Russell for 2022 champion anyone?