Jeddah Expected to Cause Problems Again This Year
We’re not fans of the racing at Jeddah—the track looks awesome and high speed is fun to watch. But, the layout—a combination of street circuit and race track—made for a lot of issues in the first Grand Prix there in 2021.
In addition to multiple crashes and contact with walls in practice, the GP had three virtual safety cars, one full safety car, two red flags, and a partridge in a pear tree.
Multiple drivers called racing the layout versions of “dangerous”.
Now, three months later, we’re back.
Will it be better (safer?) than last year?
Race Fans has why Esteban Ocon thinks there’s an aspect of the 2022 car that makes the track “tricky”.
Red Bull Still Favorites for Title
For many, Red Bull were the title favorites going into the Bahrain GP weekend, and nothing in practice or Quali did much to change that.
The race…that’s a different story. Now, they’ve been outscored by Haas and haven’t seen a checkered flag. Every other radio message from Verstappen seemed angry and stressed.
Not what a contender looks like…to most.
But there’s still one person (and they aren’t named Christian Horner!) who still thinks they are the odds-on favorite.
So You’re Telling Me There’s a Chance…That It Gets Worse?
Lando Norris had frank assessments of the team’s race on Sunday. He didn’t try to put lipstick on a pig, and admitted there’s very little good to talk about after a weekend where neither car had one-lap pace or long run pace.
He gave his estimate of when the upgrades and improvement will come, but McLaren fans may want to avoid clicking to read more.
Mercedes Doesn’t Believe Power Unit is Behind Rivals’
Looking at the bottom of the timing tower after the Bahrain Grand Prix, there was a pattern developing. Of cars that finished, the bottom six finishers were all powered by Mercedes’ engine.
That’s both drivers for Williams, Aston Martin, and McLaren.
But, Toto Wolff, Team Principal for Mercedes thinks there’s a different culprit besides just blaming the power unit.
Carlos Sainz has timed things perfectly. He went to Ferrari on a two year deal, which is up at the end of this season. He had a really good season—far and away the best driver who switched teams before the 2021 season. In the offseason before the 2022 season news reports quoted the team as saying they were working on a contract extension.
Now, after qualifying third and finishing P2, the price might be going up with each round.