Formula 1 came home this weekend, in more ways than one. With a brand new trial format for the weekend and a jam-packed Grand Prix on Sunday, there’s plenty to talk about. Let’s get stuck in.
F1 Sprint – Yay or Nay?
It’s not often that all of here at GP Grandstand agree on something but when it comes to the F1 Sprint, we all thought it was a bit pointless. Aside from some action on the opening laps and Fernando Alonso demonstrating, once again, that he owns a fountain of youth with his exceptional pace and overtaking skills, not much really happened.
The top three were as expected and it didn’t really shake things up for the Grand Prix, aside from ruining Russell’s weekend. Again.
Listen to all our thoughts over on our Talking F’All Podcast but in the meantime, we think that some major tweaks need to be made if F1 want to use this format again.
Regardless of who you think was at fault for the racing incident that occurred on Lap 1 of the Grand Prix, there’s no denying two things: it was inevitable that it was going to happen at some point, and it’s spiced the season back up in a massive way.
All of Red Bull’s hard work over the last five rounds has been virtually eliminated. The 1-3 finish for Mercedes proves that it’s never wise to count the reigning champions out. Obviously, it’s great that Max wasn’t hurt and we here at GP Grandstand also stand by the F1 teams and the FIA in saying no to and condemning the racist abuse aimed at Hamilton following the race.
Formula 1 has these moments throughout history, like in the battles between Senna and Prost for example. But that’s racing sometimes and no matter your opinion, it certainly turned both championships on their heads.
Ferrari Vs McLaren
Charles Leclerc was a surprise to be sure this weekend, but a welcome one. After another excellent qualifying, he managed to stay in fourth by the end of the F1 Sprint and judged Sunday’s Grand Prix beautifully.
Avoiding contact on the opening lap, he found himself in the lead of the race ahead of the restart. Amazingly, the Monegasque was then able to fend off Hamilton early on. He then maintained a good gap for the majority of the race. However, he was hunted down and overtaken with two laps to go by the seven-time Champ, thus finishing in second.
Still, a second-place would have been grabbed with both hands by Leclerc at the start of the weekend so whilst perhaps a little bittersweet, it’s not all bad.
His teammate Sainz finished in sixth with the two McLarens sandwiched in between them in fourth and fifth. It was a great weekend for Daniel ‘HoneyBadger’ Riccardo and a return to form that we all hope continues. There are now just fifteen points between Ferrari and McLaren in the fight for third in the Constructor’s Standings. Game On.
Yuki was the best Red Bull Driver
With Max out of the race, all eyes were on Perez to clamber back up from the bottom of the pack and do as much damage limitation as was possible for Red Bull. But, for reasons that aren’t quite clear, Red Bull seemed to forget to give him any kind of a strategy. He pitted earlier than many thought he would, given the fact that he was on the hard tyres. Perez then pitted not long after that to get some new medium tyres, thus undoing all his progress. The Mexican finished down in sixteenth place with just the Haas cars behind him.
Gasly meanwhile finished in P11 after a long and frustrating weekend where neither he nor the team could get the car quite right. That left rookie (and GP Grandstand favourite), Yuki Tsunoda, who managed to clinch the final point scoring place of the Grand Prix.
It was a shocking weekend for the charging Bulls with just a single point collected on Sunday across both teams. Maybe Marko will go easy on Yuki for five minutes as a result.
Soft Spot for Seb
A spin early on in the race ended up with Sebastian Vettel retiring his Aston Martin towards the end of the race. So why are we talking about him? Well, following the Grand Prix, Vettel was an absolute class act.
He helped out with the cleaning up process, collecting rubbish left behind in the grandstands and doing his bit. It’s the little things sometimes in Formula 1. Whilst he might not have won any points in the race, he gets the full 25 for off-track behaviour.