14 Sundays passed without
and six more since that October 9 in which
was crowned two-time champion in Japan, when there were still four races to go on a calendar of 22, of which the Dutchman won 15.
a season of significant and visible technical changes
, such as the 18-inch tires and the "ground effect" that caused the rebound suffered by
out of contention in the Constructors' Championship after eight years.
What can be expected in 2023?
What can be expected in 2023?
The budget cap that has been in place for two years means that the cars are an evolution of last year's, so it
is likely that Red Bull will maintain dominance
In an atypical preseason, because before the teams hid their weapons and did not set their best times but now they are limited to three days of practice one week before the start of the championship, the RB19 designed by Adrian Newey was the benchmark in speed -Sergio Pérez was the fastest in the last session-, race pace and reliability.
In addition, Christian Horner's team was one of the most lapped, with 413 laps.
Sergio Pérez had the best time in the preseason tests.
The only drawback for Red Bull could be in
What the Mexican driver said in the Brazilian GP still resonates, when he was looking to beat
for the runner-up position and said:
If (Verstappen) has two world championships, it's thanks to me." Days after the start in Bahrain , Pérez redoubled:
"It is always important to work as a team and if I see that I do not receive the support when I need it, I will not give it either."
as reserve driver, after
over the continuity of the Australian with a contract until the end of the year, and Verstappen as the top figure, Checo knows that this year he will have to perform even more after a 2022 with two wins and another nine podiums but three DNFs.
"I'm in Red Bull, it's the best team in Formula 1 and
it can have the driver it wants
," said the man from Guadalajara on Fox Sports Mexico.
Ricciardo's movement was not the only one
or in the
Ricciardo, along with Pérez and Verstappen.
Among the 20 starting drivers this season are not
(imitated the Australian and went from Haas to be a reserve at Mercedes) or
Those who entered for them (Piastri to McLaren,
Nyck De Vries
to Alpha Tauri,
to Haas and
lowered the average age by three years
, which went from 29.5 years to 26.5.
There were also castlings of pilots.
went to form a duo with his compatriot
in Alpine and occupy the seat vacated by the Spanish
, the great satisfaction of the pre-season
an Aston Martin that excites with fighting in the area average
, with a docile car to drive, which showed speed without degradation.
In the absence of Lance Stroll, due to a bicycle accident, the pilot Felipe Drugovich was in the pre-season tests.
This time the changes also occurred in the
40% of the team managers
, a very high and unusual movement in F1.
The most resonant is that of
had been blamed
for the performance of a leading team that has not been a champion since 2007
The Italian's place is now taken by Frenchman
, who spent the last five seasons at Alfa Romeo.
With the SF-23 lighter and faster on the straights, due to engine and aerodynamic improvements, preseason gave the new crew chief something to worry about: heavy tire degradation
what that can mean. hurt in the race
Charles Leclerc's Ferrari at the Sakhir circuit.
Just in case, Binotto cut himself short and already clarified: "It's a car that was designed last year, when I was at Ferrari.
But it's not my car, it's the Ferrari car
Vasseur, for his part, tried to calm the
and focused on the fact that "the atmosphere in the team is perfect."
, where Valtteri Bottas suffered a Ferrari power unit problem during testing, Vasseur's place went to former McLaren
, who in the English team was replaced by
The other change came at
, a rebuilding team since the departure of Claire Williams and the sale to the Dorilton Capital group.
was replaced by
, the great strategist of Mercedes.
For their part,
(Aston Martin) remain in their places, in addition to the historic
, at Mercedes since 2013,
, who will soon be 20 years old. at Red Bull and Alpha Tauri, respectively.
Despite this experience, of the three of them, only English had a good time in Bahrain.
, which already anticipated preparing an upgrade to the W14 in April after the third race,
was one of the losers of the pre-season
Although the 2022 rebound did not appear,
had a hydraulic problem on the second day and
, although he finished with the second fastest overall time, warned that they have
“a mountain to climb”
and must “keep their heads down”.
George Russell suffered the most from Mercedes' reliability problems in Bahrain.
In Alpha Tauri, although he added the interesting De Vries to accompany the temperamental
and was the team that turned the most (456 laps), it is believed that they used less fuel and their reality is at the bottom of the table, where surprisingly they could be
if he does not improve what he showed at the Sakhir circuit, where he barely did 312 laps.
“We haven't taken a step back, we just haven't developed fast enough,” Stella said.
This information is also not enough to risk a result for this Sunday.
Just remember that in 2022, on that same stage, Verstappen was dominating the race when the Red Bull's engine failed and victory went to Leclerc, the championship leader at the start.
a latent curse
too: since 2016, none of the winners of the first Grand Prix have gone on to win the title.
But that's another (superstitious) story.
Date 1 Schedule
8.30 to 9.30 - first practice
12.00 to 13.00 - second practice
8.30 to 9.30 - third practice
12.00 to 13.00 - qualifying
12.00 - Race
-without cuts- and
will televise the new season of Formula 1, in addition to the opening acts Formula 2 and Formula 3, where this weekend the Argentine Franco Colapinto will also debut.
George Russell and his premonition about Hamilton before the start of Formula 1: "I think he will fight again"
Agustín Canapino, hours after his debut in the super demanding Indycar of the United States: "I feel an adrenaline rush that I had lost"