Get ready for the 2016 F1 season with F1 Fanatic

2016 F1 season

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It’s the first day of 2016 and the countdown to the new Formula One season is well underway.

The year ahead will see the first new team arrive in F1 for six years, the return of Renault as a full factory squad, and Lewis Hamilton’s attempt to win a fourth world championship.

Here’s what we already know about the coming season.

Teams and engines

  • The grid will expand from ten teams to eleven with the arrival of Haas, who will use Ferrari engines
  • For the third time in F1 history, Renault will have a full works team as it has taken over Lotus. The team previously competed as Renault between 2002 and 2011.
  • Manor has taken over the supply of Mercedes engines previously used by Lotus
  • Red Bull will continue to use Renault engines but they will now be branded by TAG Heuer
  • Toro Rosso will use 2015-specification Ferrari power units. It previously used the Italian manufacturer’s engines between 2007 and 2013


  • At the time of writing, 17 drivers are expected to return with the same teams this year, making this a remarkably stable off-season
  • Romain Grosjean has departed Lotus and will drive for new team Haas
  • After a year on the sidelines at Ferrari having been dropped by Sauber, Esteban Gutierrez will return to race duties as Grosjean’s team mate
  • Grosjean’s place has been taken by newcomer Jolyon Palmer – the only rookie confirmed in the field so far – alongside Pastor Maldonado
  • Manor is the only team yet to confirm its drivers for 2016
  • See the list of 2016 F1 drivers and teams

Get the 2016 F1 calendar – and more – on your mobile

An unprecedented 21-race schedule for 2016 has been confirmed by the FIA. The newest addition is a street race in Baku which will include several tight bends which lead the cars through historic parts of the city.

You can add all the races to your preferred online calendar using the F1 Fanatic Google Calendar. It will be updated with any changes to the schedule, and start times for all the practice, qualifying and race sessions will be added closer to the start of the season. It also includes details of F1 test sessions and will be updated with F1 car launch dates when they are announced.

F1 Fanatic also maintains calendars for IndyCar and the World Endurance Championship which you can find below. GP2, Formula 3.5 V8 and GP3 calendars will be added once they are confirmed:

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Plan your 2016 race trip

Baku will be F1’s newest venue in 2016
Are you going to a race this year? You have more races than ever to choose from.

If you need some help planning your trip F1 Fanatic’s active community of race-goers are on hand to pass on their knowledge:

See here for more information on how to plan a trip to an F1 race, what to take with you and more:

Follow the 2016 drivers and teams

The F1 Fanatic Twitter Directory has been fully revised and updated for the new season. It lists over 400 official accounts for F1 drivers, teams, team members, media figures and more.

The only drivers who do not maintain an official Twitter presence are Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen. But you can find details for the drivers who do – and many others – here:

And of course make sure you’re following F1 Fanatic’s Twitter accounts:

Support the 2016 drivers and teams

Who are you supporting in 2016? Are you following your favourite driver to a new team? Do any of the rookies have your support already?

You can show who you’re supporting on F1 Fanatic: here’s how:

2016 F1 season

Browse all 2016 F1 season articles

Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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21 comments on “Get ready for the 2016 F1 season with F1 Fanatic”

  1. Still confused about the Red Bull/TAG scheme here. Are the engines Red Bull using just re-branded products or can TAG itself develop the units they’re given under the token system?

    1. It’s the former.

      1. What’s the point then? If they’re just Renaults, and everyone knows they’re Renaults, why bother pretending they’re not Renaults?

        1. @sjc327 – Sponsor money, plain and simple. Could just as well be branded Rolex, Prada, Starbucks, Armani, Moët & Chandon or Hostess Twinkies for that matter.

        2. As @bullmello mentions, its a sponsor who pays the bills for the engine. And as Renault itself had no wish to (or rather, a wish not to) appear on the cars, that was the most sensible way forward for both the team and the engine supplier @sjc327

        3. @sjc327
          Sponsor money (to a certain degree) and image reasons. Running Renault engines under a different name is one way of keeping word after last year’s ‘separation’ from Renault. A combination of symbolically distancing themselves from the manufacturer as well as preventing Renault from being obviously linked with Red Bull’s results.
          If it works as intended (and I’m sure it will – RB has an impressively effective PR department), future success will be credited to Red Bull, while future misfortune will give rise to more frequent mentions of the actual engine supplier.

    2. It was speculated at one point that Red Bull would work with Ilmor to develop a different turbo system to what renault have provided.

      The continuation of Red Bull’s relationship with Renault, albeit on heavily revised terms, had been anticipated for several weeks, with suggestions that Horner’s squad would pursue a different development path to that of the works Renault team in 2016 with the help of Mario Illien of Ilmor Engineering at their Milton Keynes base.

      Horner’s reference to Ilmor working in a “technical partnership” with Renault would appear to point to Illien taking on a more official capacity at the French manufacturer’s Viry-Chatillon engine base. Renault have said that more information on their 2016 plans will be released in January.


  2. “Grosjean’s place has been taken by newcomer Jolyon Palmer – the only rookie confirmed in the field so far – alongside Pastor Maldonado”
    How many years will Maldonado be considered a rookie?

  3. Hard to even count all the interesting stories coming up this year. Among them for me are:

    Engine supply saga
    Red Bull vs Torro Rosso
    Merc vs Ferrari
    Rosberg vs Hamilton vs Vettel
    Rosberg’s contract speculation
    Button vs Alonso
    Lewis (assorted sagas)

    Can’t wait! :O

    1. Rosberg’s contract speculation

      I can predict this one: there’ll be six to eight months of tabloid-grade tripe, then Merc will say “Oh, yeah, we renewed his contract”.

      1. Lol very likely @raceprouk.

  4. ILuvSoundtracks (@)
    1st January 2016, 16:42

    Now let’s ride the car launch hype train.

  5. Does anyone know or have a BTCC Google+ calendar?

    Thanks for the Google+ calendar, it will be the first year I’m going to try this and all my followed series except for BTCC are covered by Keith.

  6. Who are likely candidated for the Manor seats? I’m guessing Rossi and Stevens.

  7. I would like to see more exciting races.

  8. Can’t wait for pre-season testing to get underway. I always enjoy that time a year, with new cars getting unveiled, and speculation going into overdrive. Also enjoy Ted’s daily notebooks and the buildup for the Australian GP.

    But for now, it’s time to enjoy the Dakar rally!

  9. This part of the year used to be so exciting, as each week we’d have a new car launch and get to see what everyone came up with. Now due to testing restrictions, and no-one wanting to give away their secrets, I’m guessing we won’t see anything of any new cars until mid-February ahead of the first test. Even in the off-season F1’s found a way to reduce interest from the fans!

    1. @dave-m, I don’t think that is necessarily down to testing restrictions. I think it’s a combination of the fact that teams have learned to push to the last possible day to finalize the car, as well as the F1 season being as long as it is. The last race wasn’t that long ago after all.

      1. Possibly @me4me, but if there were unlimited testing (and the tests weren’t centrally co-ordinated) I imagine that at least Mercedes and Ferrari would be pounding around tracks from sometime in January to start getting mileage on the new machines.

  10. Willem Cecchi (@)
    2nd January 2016, 18:56

    “Grosjean’s place has been taken by newcomer Jolyon Palmer – the only rookie confirmed in the field so far – alongside Pastor Maldonado”

    Please tell me I am not the only one that laughed at this.

  11. Keith- the next Formula E round in March after Buenos Aires is at Hermanos Rodriguez on a special layout there.

Comments are closed.