Four big lights after the title

The Formula 1 always saves an unexpected script twist, the last one was the infraction in the budget ceiling committed by Red Bull last year, which can be turned into a fine and that surrounds the recent dominance of the energy team in the world. But back to the sport, pure and simple, Verstappen He is world champion with four races still ahead of him, the first this Sunday at the Las Américas circuit. That the title was decided so quickly is a jug of cold water for the informational tension of the World Cup after a season, that of 2021, which remained open until the last lap of the last grand prix with the historic rivalry between Max and Hamilton. However, there are a handful of incentives to follow with interest the weekends in USA, Mexico, Brazil and Abu Dhabi.

Builders. Red Bull will almost certainly end this weekend the longest streak in history in the Manufacturers’ World Championship. After eight consecutive Mercedes titles (all between 2014 and 2021), the Milton Keynes team will claim its fifth constructors’ crown to add to the six drivers’ titles (Vettel, 2010-2013; and two for Verstappen, 2021 and 2022). . They have a 165-point advantage over Ferrari and after the Austin test there will be 147 at stake, so it will be enough for them not to give up 18 points to sentence the other trophy.

runner-up Judging by the statements, Horner wants Pérez to get the second position in the World Championship ahead of Leclerc to materialize the perfect season for Red Bull. As a curiosity, Webber was never runner-up in Vettel’s time. Right now, Checo has one more point than Leclerc. He will need good results to unbalance this fight, which is not a priority for Ferrari either. In Maranello they want Charles and Sainz to win another grand prix in 2022; the Monegasque has three wins this year and the Madrid player, one. And Pérez, meanwhile, places as “the number one goal” the third victory of the course if he arrives in the most special setting: Mexico.

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Hamilton. Sir Lewis has won a race in all his seasons as an F1 driver, from 2007 to 2021. That speaks well of his cars but also of the hands of the driver, hooked on wins even in complex seasons like McLaren’s 2009. This year, Mercedes has fought for victories with real options in Hungary and the Netherlands, two circuits with a twisty and slow profile. If they fail to finish one of the four Sundays with the seven-time English champion, the 2022 campaign will become exceptional in their record.

Two seats. With Gasly at Alpine and De Vries at Alpha Tauri starting next year, the 2023 grid still has two available wheels that are due to be finalized in the coming weeks. One is Mick Schumacher’s Haas, which has to earn a renewal (and accidents like the one in free practice at Suzuka don’t help). The position interests Hulkenberg. Another, the Williams that Latifi leaves free. It could be for the North American Sargeant, although he needs to close the last points of the super license in Abu Dhabi. From the outset, the 21-year-old will climb into the Grove car in free practice in Austin, like Palou with the McLaren.

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