Charles Leclerc, Ferrari, Bahrain International Circuit, 2022

Leclerc leads Ferrari one-two as late Red Bull failures put Hamilton on podium

2022 Bahrain Grand Prix summary

Posted on

| Written by

Charles Leclerc led home team mate Carlos Sainz Jnr to claim a one-two for Ferrari in the Bahrain Grand Prix after Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez retired in the final laps.

Having started from pole, Leclerc held his lead at the start and fended off Verstappen’s fierce challenges until the Red Bull driver suddenly slowed with a handful of laps remaining. Sainz inherited second place, while Perez retired on the final lap after his engine cut out, handing the final podium place to Lewis Hamilton.

When the lights went out, Leclerc fended off Verstappen’s advances on the run to turn one and held onto the lead, with Sainz remaining in third. Perez lost out to both Hamilton and Kevin Magnussen and dropped down to sixth on the opening lap, while Esteban Ocon hit Mick Schumacher at turn six, pitching the Haas into a full 360-degree spin, from which he was able to recover and continue.

Magnussen lost fifth place to Perez after a mistake under braking for turn one, before then losing another position just a few laps later when another mistake into turn one cost him sixth to George Russell.

At the front, Leclerc and Verstappen began pulling a gap to Sainz in third. On the tenth lap, Perez used DRS to breeze by Hamilton on the run to turn four and reclaim fourth place. Mercedes opted to bring Hamilton in for a switch to hard tyres a lap later, but Hamilton struggled to find grip on his outlap with his cold tyres and lost a place to Zhou Guanyu, before passing the Alfa Romeo back along the main straight.

Red Bull brought Verstappen in for his first stop at the end of lap 14, with Sainz following him behind. Both cars received a second set of soft tyres and Ferrari responded to Verstappen’s stop by immediately bringing Leclerc in.

Despite the three second gap before pitting, Verstappen found himself right behind the Ferrari when Leclerc rejoined the circuit. The pair engaged in a gripping, multi-lap duel, passing and repassing each other several times over the following laps, before Verstappen locked up his right front tyre under braking for turn one and dropped out of attack range of the Ferrari.

As Verstappen complained of engine braking problems on his Red Bull as well as loss of tyre grip, his gap to the leader grew to around four seconds before Red Bull pitted him for his second stop. Once again, he was able to cut seconds out of Leclerc’s lead and loom large in the Ferrari’s mirrors once the leader pitted, but he was unable to get close enough to challenge Leclerc once again.

Leclerc began to pull gradually away from the chasing Verstappen, before the Red Bull suddenly pitted for a third time to switch from the medium tyres onto a third set of softs. Ferrari reacted by bringing in Sainz from the second place he had inherited from Verstappen, but then the Safety Car was called as Pierre Gasly pulled his AlphaTauri off the circuit with flames licking from the rear of the car.

Ferrari pitted Leclerc under Safety Car, meaning the race would be determined by a seven lap sprint to the chequered flag with almost the entire field now on new soft tyres. At the restart, Verstappen could not get close enough to challenge Leclerc and instead was forced to defend his second place from Sainz behind.

But then with just a handful of laps remaining, Verstappen began complaining of battery problems and was passed by Sainz on the run to turn 11. Then the Red Bull slowed on the exit of turn 13 and Verstappen was forced to pull into the pits. Perez was then tasked with defending the final podium place from Hamilton, but his own Red Bull engine seized at the first corner, causing him to spin into retirement.

Leclerc took the chequered flag to score Ferrari’s first win since 2019, while Sainz finished second to make it a one-two for the Italian team. Hamilton took third, with Mercedes team mate Russell taking fourth.

Magnussen secured fifth for Haas and their first points since 2020, ahead of Valtteri Bottas in sixth in his first race for Alfa Romeo. Esteban Ocon took seventh ahead of Yuki Tsunoda, with Fernando Alonso ninth and rookie Zhou Guanyu scoring a point on debut in tenth.

Advert | Become a RaceFans supporter and go ad-free

2022 Bahrain Grand Prix reaction

    Check back shortly for more race reaction

Author information

Will Wood
Will has been a RaceFans contributor since 2012 during which time he has covered F1 test sessions, launch events and interviewed drivers. He mainly...

Got a potential story, tip or enquiry? Find out more about RaceFans and contact us here.

122 comments on “Leclerc leads Ferrari one-two as late Red Bull failures put Hamilton on podium”

  1. So these cars did do the job for us. Only problem is the overheating of parts now and tyres probably. I wonder if RB turned up the PU to maximum power. If so, why at the first race?

    1. @krichelle Gasly too, tight? Maybe a Honda cooling issue with the new slimmer side-pods?

      1. @david-br
        According to Helmut Marko, both RBs had a fuel pump issue (low fuel pressure).
        No news on Gasly’s retirement though.

        1. I think they both just run out of fuel, hence low pressure

        2. Andy (@andyfromsandy)
          20th March 2022, 18:09

          Perez’s car stopped dead like an engine seize. If fuel pressure went low I wonder if it expired with a very lean mixture.

        3. @srga91 that sounds odd though when Max was complaining about the increased resistance in the steering and that the power steering felt rough, with the team indicating that the issue was linked to the loss of power that Max was experiencing.

          The problems that Max was describing sound more consistent with the sort of issues that you might have if the hydraulic system was losing pressure, given that could then cause the power steering system to lose pressure and cause the resistance of the system to increase. Why would a fuel pump issue cause the steering to become much heavier though?

          1. CH said in interview steering issue was a track rod problem coming off the jack at the pitstop.

    2. 3 of their 4 engines not quite making it to the end seems like an early miscalculation from the new Red Bull engine department. All three failure modes seemed different which may be even more worrying for them.

      1. now they (mostly max, obviously) cant yell choice words at the radio to honda engine same they did with renault :) noone else left for them but themselves

        1. Put a Dart Game and a photo of Max, you seem to need to relax a bit, man :)

          1. I mean…maybe you are correct? Maybe Mystic has a point though. Even if you regard his comment as being tinged with anger, he does has a very valid point!

          2. Must be an enormous poster. He will not be able to hit something smaller :)

          3. DeanR

            lol at angry :) i couldnt be more joyous from this much fun… i dont need a poster, but max will need a big punching bag of himself to relax and steam off and maybe (said million times) maybe he will learn to race with his head and not with his mouth. i m expecting him to clash with leclerc more often than not, and it wont be their words, it will get physical rather quickly. max doesnt learn. when you think he is matured enough, he likes to disappoint everyone even in his own team

        2. Yeap they’re always trying to Blame Somebody.

    3. Here we go again.

      1. @ucat33 dont take everything at face value, i m just chanting the same things being said about lewis all these years to dig at some who are known fanatic and ridiculous with their comments and mouths non stop (just a piece of the same owed back to them and here i m giving) . now max has a rocket ship of a car. so it is not about talent more about car debate :)

        1. lexusreliability?
          20th March 2022, 17:33


        2. So at least you agree Lewis always won by a big car and engine advantage.
          I guess knowing your normal additions here that’s something to cherish :)

        3. so people assume too much, and their mouth wide open until the very last lap to cry again. we are here cherishing those cries of max fans :)

        4. Yeah. I am not a fan of the whining and explosive outbursts either. But Max has a ton of talent. As do all of these drivers. Especially Lewis – who has proven it year in and year out. Those who say he is just the beneficiary of a fast car are ridiculous. Of course he is. But he does drive it to perfection most of the time – even when his team makes stupid strategy decisions. Fact is that having both of these guys in F1 is good for us – what else would we have to be passionate about?

  2. Well well well… finally justice was done… it seems that Saint Fangio decided to put things in their place. After the disgusting, shameful, scandalous THEFT of the championship from Hamilton by the indecent owners of Formula 1, fans can enjoy this well-deserved victory for Ferrari. And the podium of Hamilton, the true world champion 2021.

    1. Sikhumbuzo Khumalo
      20th March 2022, 17:14

      I loved today. I hope we see more of this. No person should walk around with a stolen title and be at ease with himself. I say stolen because he can return it but chooses to keep it

      1. You won’t find a more fanatical Lewis supporter than I but Max is not to blame for that shambles that took place last season! Let this go man! It’s done!
        I must admit though… Today was enjoyable😁

    2. You are not F1 fan, you are Hamilton psycho-fan.

      1. says the mad-max fans

      2. karma is a

        1. Yep, see Abu Dhabi :)

          1. yeah we can see you are crying so bad makes you confused :)

    3. Yeap they’re always trying to Blame Somebody.

    4. Justice is Sooo Soothing

    5. José Lopes da Silva
      20th March 2022, 18:25

      Curious reference to Fangio, the driver who won the 1956 because a rival decided that he DESERVED it.

    6. Something from your propaganda teacher, you are showing as a great pupil
      “Wenn Sie ein ausreichend großes Li erzählen e und sagen Sie es häufig genug, es wird geglaubt”.

  3. Absolutely incredible, what a great start to the season. Good wheel to wheel fighting, surprises good and bad, up and down the field. Can’t wait to see how the season unfolds.

    1. Andy (@andyfromsandy)
      20th March 2022, 18:12

      Watching the way Charles could pass after turn one suggests Verstappen should of waited until the same moment himself.

      It was noted in commentary and I have mentioned that with being able to stay close you allow the car in front to stay there until the last overtaking opportunity and off you go for the win.

      In effect that is what Charles was able to do but then build a gap that Verstappen was unable to close down.

      1. thats what people do who use their brain more often than their mouth :) unfortunately for max, he has a bigger mouth than parts in his head cavity. he never seize to amaze how often and how frequently he is doing these, you think you would put a monkey in that seat and it would learn from these after a few times

        1. On the third try when he locked up, it would have been the time to stay close behind and try on the following straight. He tried to dive-bomb into turn 1, which is one of his signature moves.

          But his worst performance was the restart. The positioning of the car on the inside before the last corner was strange, to find a nice word for it.

  4. So happy for Ferrari. Such likeable drivers. Great performance by Lec, Ham, Bot and Mag. Difficult races for Carlos and Russell.

    1. Spot on. Bot and MAG have to be loving life right now. And how happy is HAM with that RBR implosion? Ferraris look unbelievable now – guess that development last year is working out.

    2. Did Bottas really deliver a great performance?
      He qualified great, but then he went from 6th to 14th?
      He’s a fast qualifier, but when he’s surrounded by other drivers, he just seems to let them all pass.

      Same question for Hamilton. What was his great performance?
      He qualified on the natural order of the car. Russel qualified bad.
      And then Hamilton just kept his place, Russel improved his place during the race.
      With the termination of Verstappen and Perez both gained those places in the end.
      So I would say Russel had a better race than Hamilton, partly because he qualified below the natural place of the car.

      Leclerc and Sainz drove a flawless race I would say.

      1. And then Hamilton just kept his place, Russel improved his place during the race.

        This is why folks fail in their exams.
        The Mercedes is currently the 3rd fastest car, and they should have finished 5th and 6th and nothing better but they both did 3rd and 4th. They both got the maximum.
        Then again, Russel should have qualified at the very least 6th, so he only got back to his rightful position and could not make anymore progress.

        1. Ah, I seem to have missed where Hamilton and Russel made a genuine pass for positions 3 and 4.

          We are saying exactly the same?!
          The Mercedes is the 3rd best car at the moment.
          Lewis qualified in the correct place: good job!
          Russel qualified below, but made it up in the race.
          That they finished 3rd and 4th was only because of the RB engine issues.
          So what was the ‘great performance’ of putting the car in their natural order again?

      2. Well Lewis outqualified the Mr Saturday, made a great start, then in the first stint, still kept in touch with the Top 4 foramy laps despite being a second a lap slower. Lewis was all over Perez after the Safety car, he was there to take advantage when the Redbull drivers hit trouble. So it was a good performance by Lewis in a difficult car.

        Bottas qualified great, had a bad start but then recovered well and did some good overtakes.

      1. Dont waste your time with this one. People dont seem to get that he will go away if he is ignored.
        On another note… are You Bradley Philpot? of Missed Apex? (And accomplished racer?)

  5. I do enjoy a Redbull free podium :D

    1. it felt incredibly peaceful and fair to be honest. never been happier for ferrari this much before

  6. MERC fans rejoice as the RBR went into oblivion. It is not only the RBR cars, the AT of GAS also is a worry for RB Power Trains now.

    1. Agreed. GAS’s issues were mutually exclusive from checo and Max’s, maybe the entire powertrain is flawed.

      For the conspiracy theorists, rbpt poached a lot of Merc powertrain employees. Take that for what you wish

  7. Very entertaining race. That battle between Max ans Leclerc after the first round of pitstops was scintillating to say the least. Great driving. I guess DRS exists for moments like this.
    Kudos to Ferrari for getting a 1-2. Thoroughly deserved after all they’ve been through and the sacrifices they’ve made.

    Wonder who has the slowest power unit among the four…maybe not Renault anymore.

    1. “all they have been through…”???? Everything Ferrari have been through was self inflicted and deserved!! THAT is the price cheating should pay. Take note RB

      1. This, this comment makes it all worth it

  8. No wonder Honda wanted to remove their name from that engine.

    1. Andy (@andyfromsandy)
      20th March 2022, 18:16

      It is a Honda engine though in all but name and it will remain so for sometime. This season in particular all the work is being done in Japan to build and supply them.

  9. 3 out of 4 Honda engines had issues and DNF. Last year they were so reliable.

  10. Mark Madbearson
    20th March 2022, 17:11

    Great start for George Bottas.

  11. What goes around comes around. Cheaters will eventually be punished.

    1. Sikhumbuzo Khumalo
      20th March 2022, 17:15

      I absolutely love this

    2. When you say cheaters you must mean that somehow they were in Masi’s pockets? Not sure how they cheated – just the beneficiaries of some bad calls on the race directors part. Masi was the problem.

      1. how do you know he didnt? it is not like it is the first time a top sports team or a top sports athlete cheated? what makes you think “if” is impossible?

    3. Not sure how they cheated unless you are insinuating that they paid Masi to make the decisions he made. Masi was terrible and RBR benefited from his ridiculous calls last year. And I love all of this people saying that Verstappen should give the WDC back. hahahaha. Would you do it?

    4. RB didn’t cheat, but they did manage badger and influence the race director into making an unjustified and unfair decision.

    5. You already miss Masi? Maybe he would have red flagged the race after Max retired, to make the previous lap the result. No longer there, sry 4 u.

  12. What goes around comes around.

    I think both RB DNF’s today is a little of Karma after Abu Dhabi antics with both Perez and RB team.

    Great to see Prancing horse back, will take a lot of races for Merc to catch back. They are the favourites!!

  13. We’ve got tons of talking points, this will be an interesting season:

    – not sure about the concept of these cars, they are extremely heavy and downright embarassing in slow corners. The new regs for 2026 should focus on addressing this
    – Verstappen’s DNF is the best thing that could happen from the season’s perspective. This guy doesn’t finish outside the podium if he finishes the race and I was afraid he would dominate this season even despite occasional brilliance from Ferrari or Mercedes. He has also shown surprising inexperience while trying to overtake Leclerc
    – Mercedes has tons of work to do on their engine. McLaren, Aston and Williams were tragic.
    – given the new regulations, the field is surprisingly condensed. Perhaps a repeat of 2012?

    1. Good lord McLaren!!!! All of those sponsors have to be wondering what they are getting this year now.

      1. Gutted to see Nor/Ric at the back, and on today’s result Ferrari Engines appear to have overhauled the Merc’s

      2. I luv chicken
        20th March 2022, 17:43

        It was like the time pre season when Prost ran grossly underweight to attract sponsors, even to the point of taking out the fire bottle. From the outside, seems like McLaren might have done the same. So good in testing. So dismal in the race.

    2. @pironitheprovocateur yes they look very, very boring to watch. They are much slower in slow corners and it shows, looked like a slow motion race at some points! maybe in the faster tracks we’ll see them come good but they do not look at all like they are going flat out. Weight really is an issue these days…

  14. Not a great start for RB power, what were the temperatures like I know the race was later in the day, surely testing would have been warmer?

  15. Reliability issue allows engine manufacturers to make improvements to engine, which is good for Red Bull power trains.
    But being slower does not have any special privileges which makes it bad for teams using Mercedes power trains.

    1. Well, you might be fast but if you can’t finish there are 0 points for all that speed. Have a look at the 2005 Mclaren and the 2012 Mclaren as examples of wasted pace.

  16. About time Leclerc ended his lengthy win drought. DOTD: K-Mag with honorable mention to Bottas.

  17. I did wonder what impact Honda leaving would have on those engines. Red Bull might be a $5B company, but Honda is a £40b company and they are a motor manufacturer by default. Too early to say, but I don’t think Red Bull have the financial means to keep this powertrain going reliably. I am already reminded of the 2012 Mclaren. Blisteringly fast but woefully unreliable.

    1. You do understand that Honda ‘leaving’ is in name only?
      It is still same Honda people working on the engine, now under the Red Bull flag.
      Why do you think Red Bull don’t have the financial means? Please clarify.

      1. Perhaps you have troubles comprehending numbers, but your question has already been addressed in my original comment. And no, Honda haven’t left in all but name as you claim.

  18. It’s seems awfully suspect that all of the Mercedes customer teams had a terrible race. I know they all have the same engine but are they using the same fuels and fluids? Were they all at the back of the field? All of them?

    1. Well, the Mercedes finished on the podium. And 5th/6th wouldn’t be the slowest engine, it would have been ahead of Alpine.

      Aston Martin has the same problem Mercedes does– if they run the car low enough for maximum downforce, the car will shred itself and the driver by bouncing up and down.

      I’m not convinced Williams has the driving talent to develop a car right now.

      That leaves McLaren, who seemed to spend most of the past 10 days in Bahrain chasing their tail, after a promising Barcelona test.

      I think it’s too early to draw conclusions on the true pecking order by power unit.

  19. RandomMallard
    20th March 2022, 17:50

    One for the facts and stats article: where does this line up in longest gaps between wins. Obviously it’s nowhere near Raikonnen’s record, but I’m interested to see where it lines up.

    1. Not even in the top ten. Forty-six races between wins for Leclerc. Tenth-longest gap was by Clay Regazzoni, with 54.

  20. OMG people saying “justice” or whatever… is this going to happen all season? or until Max retires?

    1. José Lopes da Silva
      20th March 2022, 19:20

      I don’t know how it happened in 1990, 1991 or in 1995.
      In 2009 I remember no one complained much about Singapore-gate.

      1. The biggest difference between now and then is social media and the internet.

      2. It gave a totally undeserved WDC to you know who and stole the championship from Felipe.

        Ok, not the one who cheated but the great beneficiary anyway (ALO, whose implication in the plot has never been proved, only got a race win, pretty much meaningless at that point).

        The point is, if one race has been massively and intentionally manipulated, and its results should have been deleted, it was Singapore 2006, not Abu Dhabi 2021. But nobody seems to put asterisks in that WDC (ok, excepting me).

        1. Singapore 2008 of course

        2. Well, you’d also have to take into account the win that was taken from Hamilton in Spa and gifted to Massa, after Whiting assured the team Hamilton had acted properly.

          It’s also a bit of a stretch to claim that Piquet’s crash was responsible for Massa leaving the pit with the hose still attached, or Massa tapping the wall late in the race.

          In other words, even though he was leading when Piquet crashed, there’s no guarantee he would have still been leading at the end of the race… In fact, with that particular race, it’s unlikely.

    2. “is this going to happen all season?”
      This will turn into a never-ending British curse. As usual, they will tell it even more exaggerated from generation to generation. Will turn into a modern time witch tale. I really love these brits fart tales.

  21. These comments sections following a race used to be full of varied and interesting debate about what had just happened. They’ve now turned into a weird Merc vs Red Bull fan fight with quotes like ‘karma’ etc. It’s like a football message board and it’s boring and irritating.

    It’s all very nonsensical after what was a brilliant race. So many talking points such as the ferrari result, K Mag in 5th place in a haas, points finishes for Sauber and Mclaren woes. I brilliant start to the season with a very very good race at a track that delivers a lot of good races. Looks as though we’re all set for a great scrap this season

    1. It’s terribly toxic and tiresome nowadays.

    2. 100% agree, it is irritating to read these comment sections after races.

      Also agree that it was a good race and great to see that the cars could follow each other better.

      The only thing that I didn’t enjoy was the pointless safety car. I thought the VSC was literally created for these situations but apparently the thirst for late race drama is too strong. It really takes away from sporting integrity and the natural flow of the race in my opinion. I don’t need to see a nail-biting sprint to the finish every race.

    3. I agree, it used to be better. Good comments are still there, but they are covered by dozens of low effort exchanges between Verstappen/Hamilton fans. It is like Twitter, without the funny memes.

      This season could not start better for fans. will RB identify the root cause of both failures and recover the 0-points start? Will Merc recover the loss of performance that is plaguing their start of the season?

      1. RB will definitely resolve the issues & shall come out on top.As for Mercedes the best they can get is 3rd or 4th.

    4. Glad to still see a few sensible people here, but I’m looking for other places to discuss, it’s getting too toxic here.
      It’s not about or for racefans anymore.

    5. Couldnt agree more. this website used to be such a great place for comments. Its a shame all the plastic fans of the drivers (rather than the sport itself) fill these sites with such hatred. F1 used to be like rugby, in that despite what team you supported (if at all) everyone used to get on and stand side by side, just enjoying the great sport it is. It seems in the last decade, along with the unholy rise of social media, the ‘if your not with us, your against us’ attitude has taken hold and wont let go. I also think its a younger generation thing too, as most of my counterparts who are over 40 that follow F1 certainly dont act this way. Its like a cancer creeping through the fanbase of the sport. We witnessed some spectacular racing today by Charles and Max, and the long awaited return of Ferrari at the pointy end of the grid, which is all that should be being celebrated in the comments, but the bitter Merc/Lewis fans who still cant move on from last year just cant help themselves. its such a shame, and it puts me off coming onto this site anymore.

      1. And yet u still here…

      2. I was with you until you started to give off strong Boomer vibes with your ‘youth of today’ comment. You long to return to the days of civil conversation and yet you tar all young people with a broad, negative brush just a few sentences later.

        For what it’s worth, some of the most obnoxious posters on here have been posting for far too long to be TikTok obsessed Gen Z’ers, so if you want people to have better conversations on here, you might consider not reflexively dismissing entire groups of people right off the bat.

    6. Agreed, it’s very tiring. I’ve been using this site since 2009-ish and don’t remember it ever being this bad. Best we don’t let it detract from a hopefully great season though!

    7. Thanks for this. Just watching the podium now (almost never watch races live) and the Italian anthem makes me smile.
      I love this sport and I was entertained today!

      Indeed so many stories up and down the field, like Schumacher not pittting, wtf mclaren and has newey pushed the envelope too hard? Also Hamilton being there to pick up the last podium place while I would’ve expected more of Russel…

      Could go on for a while. Just bring it on and indeed please quit the hooliganism

    8. My comment got stuck in the moderation system – I’ll try again with some deletions:
      @djarvis I think it’s mostly just a few, albeit very noisy, commenters causing the most trouble. Don’t bother trying to argue with them. My best tactic is to just ignore them, and only pay attention to the excellent articles, and intelligent/funny comments.
      There are at least some on here worth paying attention to.

    9. Completely agree. I just scan past the partisan comments until someone has something interesting to talk about. Great race, lots to discuss, and instead the partisan Hamilton vs Verstappen turn up.

      Anyway, Ferrari look great, if Red Bull don’t have a major problem and if Mercedes can find that operating window we could be in for a 2012. Also, I think the race suggests Bottas is not as bad as people claim whilst you have to question the pace of Schumacher given how much further ahead Magnussen was despite less practice.

  22. Those sidepods after all weren’t that bad, Gary Anderson.

    1. First, he said he didn’t understand the concept (front to rear unrelated), then it turned into a development limited concept, let’s wait what next?

  23. NeverElectric
    20th March 2022, 20:22

    Take out the Mercedes error when they put Lewis on the hard tyre, factor in the race as it turned out with the Safety Car…without that strategic error by Mercedes, and knowing that karma then visited the Red Bull boys, could Hamilton have been fighting for the win? I think so.
    It was quite refreshing to hear Max throwing his toys out of his pram on team radio as the Red Bull gave up the ghost. Couldn’t happen to a nicer guy. Christian Horner’s look on the wall as Max tumbled down the order: priceless.
    Shame about Checo, I think he drove a beautiful race and the engine dealt him a cruel blow. He will be back.
    I don’t know, I got the feeling that Russell was sort of holding back once he’d cleared the cars between himself and Hamilton. I think he could have gone faster. Just a feeling. At any rate, here’s hoping for a few more DNFs for Max, and for good performances for Checo. As for the rest of the field – I like the Mercedes drivers, and I love McLaren, but wonderful seeing Ferrari back up where they belong.
    This will be a good season.

  24. Davethechicken
    20th March 2022, 20:31

    I enjoyed the race, but was not convinced the racing was improved by the reg changes. There didn’t seem to very much more overtaking than previous years, and what there was seemed to be largely DRS assisted in the same old places.
    Perhaps i was unrealistic in my hopes; had thought there would be closer following and dives down the inside in more unconventional places.

    1. Davethechicken,
      The tyre factor is already limiting the drivers in their attempt to mount an overtake. Drivers are more concerned to keep their tyres alive than to push and follow closely. At some point of the race for example Leclerc and Verstappen after their duel slowed their pace by a 1s in order to save tyres. If the tyres cannot last for 5 laps or must be nursed in the outlap to increase their life then all of work done to improve racing is useless.

      1. Davethechicken
        20th March 2022, 20:58

        Agree regards the tyres, and those were the hardest 3 of the 5 options available from Pirelli. High deg track however. Overtaking has always been straightforward at Bahrain, I think Australia will give be a better barometer, but I don’t see a massive difference so far.

        1. @markinflorida, absolutely right I believe, the Ferrari design looks to be an excellent, well sorted, but safe design, while the Merc #2 design looks radical. It will be interesting to see if Merc can develop their car enough to provide the performance that their computers have theorised.

          1. Weird, above post meant for @mark in Florida.

      2. @tifoso1989, Agreed, the high-deg tyres have been the main anti-racing problem since their introduction.

        1. I thought the new 18 inch tires were supposed to be more durable….?

          1. They were supposed to have a wider operating window and allow drivers to push more. Though, when was the last time Pirelli have promised something and delivered accordingly ?

  25. Mark in Florida
    20th March 2022, 21:12

    Wow all the vitriol carrying over from last year! Hamilton fans you’re beating a dead horse. The FIA is not going to change the results. Verstappen drove a great race and provided a lot of excitement early on versus CL. Don’t take that away from him based on last year. His fuel pump may have failed or had a hydraulic failure who knows its just guesses right now. But he did his part for the team until the car let him anand Perez down. I’m so happy that the cars can trail so closely in the race. The passing and repassing was just a breath of fresh air that F1 needed. I’m a fan of Ferrari and CL so to see him take the first race of the season along with Carlos in second was a treat. My opinion on Merc is that they are trying to make a big leap in the design of their cars. They clearly don’t have all the bugs worked out but when they get it going the other teams might be in trouble. So don’t go to sleep on Merc yet. Some people are saying that Hamilton and Russell didn’t work to get the positions at the end of the race. That’s utter nonsense, you drive as best you can with what you have. You get the best you can out of the car and if bad luck occurs to others you take advantage of it, plain and simple.

    1. Meh, don’t sweat it. The report came out vindicating those of us who believe the regs weren’t properly followed, and some of us think Max was as much a victim as Hamilton.

      Now, Horner and Marko? I have no problems smirking at in a spectacular display of schadenfreude. Listening to them moan and whine, and blame everyone else, and continually taking cheap shots– I’m Ok with them having a bit of karma.

      It’ll all settle down. Max is going to have to learn a new trick, as his dive-bomb technique doesn’t seem to work as well any longer.

  26. Absolutely fantastic races, in term of championship nothing is granted.
    But Zhou must be rookie of the year, point on debut. Lol.

  27. It was really fun and put a warm smile on my face to see a Ferrari as the fastest car but; starting to work on a new concept almost 1 season earlier than your two main rivals but to have hardly 0,1sec advantage in the first race; i think it is just herald of the usual end. i do not hope but my mind and old experiences tell me that, the other two teams will catch and pass very soon.
    Briatore’s famous statement comes to mind “what had changed in the red camp to be competitive”

    1. did you expect them to be more ahead? they had a lot of time to make up to the red bull and Mercedes. I was expecting Verstappon to romp away in the race, so i am Extremely impressed by what Ferrari has achieved. And Hass too.

  28. The best looking car won. Doesnt happen often in F1

  29. Those fellas thinking Mercedes could emulate or find some gains.Well,I must admit that it’s not gonna happen.Mercedes reigning days are off and they might at one stage fall behind AT & AR.

  30. Did anyone else notice how frosty Leclerc was with Rachael Brooks in interviews? How he flatly disagreed with her comments regarding Max Verstappen. There will come a time when a lot of the drivers will have had enough and openly just tell the Sky Sports team how they feel regarding their spurious comments regarding Max. Good on Leclerc for not accepting her comments.

  31. If only they had kept the 13″ wheels. The cars to me do not look anywhere near as spritely as they were. It’s not quite the same to me. I am aware they weigh more but not being able to break as heavy whilst turning in detracts from the racing in my opinion.

Comments are closed.