No sport sits at the intersection of athletic prowess and technological innovation quite like Formula One. The world’s premier motorsport is enjoying a surge in popularity of late, riding a wave of hype generated by the runaway success of Netflix’s docu-series that covers the sport, Drive to Survive.
Now the 2023 season is mere weeks away, and OddsChecker, which provides and compares free offers and odds on F1, considers Max Verstappen and Red Bull as favourites to continue their recent dominant run of form. Here we’re going to take a look at what each of the other top teams needs to do this year to bring the fight to the Milton Keynes outfit and their Dutch two-time champion.
If Ferrari had succeeded in maintaining the early lead they established in the first few races last year, they could have been looking at their first championship victory in 16 years. Sadly this was not to be – a series of strategic blunders all but doomed Maranello’s title bid by the mid season point.
Following on from that, power unit issues and an inability to match the development pace of their rivals saw them fall back into a defending position against Mercedes for 2nd. With team principal
Mattia Binotto taking the fall for the team’s institutional failings throughout the course of last season, and former Alfa Romeo head Frederic Vasseur newly installed in his place there is a good deal of optimism at Ferrari that they have a realistic chance of besting Red Bull this year.
After all, they had the fastest car overall last year, especially in the hands of Charles LeClerc, and were merely held back by poor decision making. To succeed this year, they must marshal around their new principal and improve their ability to strategize on the fly.
For much of the turbo-hybrid era, Mercedes and their number one driver Lewis Hamilton have been virtually untouchable. With seven consecutive drivers championship wins between 2014 and 2020, and 2021’s season coming down to a controversial final race showdown between Hamilton and Red Bull’s Verstappen, the Brackley-based team still feel they have a package capable of competing for the championship.
Last year, in response to new regulations they debuted a car design with a flawed concept that significantly hampered their performance, keeping them over 1 second off the leading pace for much of the season.
Yet in spite of these challenges, they continually improved over the course of the year, eventually to find themselves bagging a win at Brazil in the closing stages of the 2022 campaign.
This year, Mercedes will be hoping that they have got all their gremlins ironed out and are in receipt of a car capable of extracting the undeniable pace of their drivers.