My 2022 F1 Forecast
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My 2022 F1 Forecast

2021 was one hell of a season. We had great highs and great lows - so much so that the runner up Lewis Hamilton is still MIA weeks after his Abu Dhabi loss. To finally defeat Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton, with the regulations in the last season, is nothing short of epic. But now RB have a bigger task ahead- maintain that lead with a new chassis and engine changes needed to accommodate it. Frankly speaking, I have no clue how this year is going to turn out. As such, this is more of a wishlist than a forecast but who’s complaining.

Hass Comeback we’re all Waiting For!

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I really got back into F1 after watching binging the first two seasons of Netflix’s Drive to Survive during the first COVID lockdown here in India. And my take away from that was Guenther Steiner rocks ✌🏻. Since then, the fortunes for the Hass team have taken a hit - with an absolute disaster of a 2021. But we always knew this was going to happen- this planned implosion of everything that sucked before they come out guns-a-blazing next year.

With budget caps and Haas spending essentially two years worth of budget on the 2022 car, it better be good. They have a decent driver in Mick Schumacher and Nikita Mazepin seemed to be getting better in the second half of the season. I know F1 fans love to dunk on Mazepin, but hear me out- he was a rookie driving a car with significantly less downforce - he can only get better from here.

Trying to be real- I don’t think Hass will be close to the top 3 and even best of the rest seems unlikely- but if the stars align maybe we see another Racing Point 2022 - specially if other teams struggle with the new regulations.

Ferrari Domination - The Blan Works!

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After a terrible 2020 and a resurgent 2021 - Ferrari looks to be on its way back to the the top. In Carlos Sainz and Charles Leclrec, they have two reliable drivers who can perform under pressure. Of-course as a Vettel stan, I hate everything about this- now that he’s out- they’re finally competitive. But I do want to see Sainz at the top- he’s so consistent and has brought his A-game to the last 3 teams he’s been to- wish him all the best. Leclrec also seems like he’ll be WDC one day but you never know with Ferrari - the pressure, the politics and the consistently bad strategy has kept many great drivers from being the WDC at Ferrari. Let’s hope they get out of their own way.

Free-for-all WDC

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I only wish them to be closer to the top 2 and for us to have a 3-way maybe even a 4-way championship battle. Is it too much to wish for? Maybe. But with Hamilton and Vertapppen in undeniable form and their teams behind them 100%, Russel now in Mercedes and Ferarri looking to get back at the top- who knows? Throw in Perez with more experience in the Redbull, and it’s a free-for-all. It is going to be epic. Of-course if this does happen, I fully expect Hamilton to dominate. Why? Because in such a high stakes situation, the best person to come out at the top is the one with the most experience defending his title- against Rosberg, Vettel, Verstappen and Massa. I don’t know. I wish he is able to win the 8th. Records are meant to be broken and Schumacher’s 7 has stood for too long. Let’s go 🦾.

Vettel No. 3 in Standings

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I know it’s unlikely but 2022 is probably the last season for the four time WDC, unless Aston Martin is able to turn things around. And it’s certainly possible. They have big money with daddy Stroll at the helm and they had provided a decent car in 2020 at least. For Vettel’s part- he maxed out the car’s potential- ending twice on the podium (counting Hungary) and a stellar performance at Monaco. So, it is definitely possible. It also seems that AM gave up trying to improve the car towards the end of the ‘21 season- a sign that they were focusing on the ‘22 version. The big issue is you can say the same thing about so many people in the midfield- Gasly, Alonso, Norris, Ricardo - but I hope it’s Vettel.

McLaren Troubles

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McLaren started their 2021 season with a bang- podiums and multiple consecutive point finishes for Norris. Ricardo seemed to struggle initially, but he picked up- and even won a race in Monza- a 1-2 finish for the team. But towards the tail end of the season, they couldn’t compete with Ferrari. It seemed like the early success they had secured through the Mercedes engine came at a cost of development tokens which prevented them from being competitive with Ferrari later in the season. And that is what worries me- can McLaren develop a competitive car in 2022?