What will F1 look like this year in terms of competitiveness?
The 2022 Formula 1 season could potentially be completely different from what we saw in 2021, and not only in terms of the cars’ aesthetics but also regarding the pecking order and which teams could be racing for the bigger prizes. Of course, you can have your own opinion and we’d love to see it in the comments. Also, you could test your knowledge by betting on who will take the trophies in Formula 1 this year, and here’s a bet365 promo code for new players, just for you.
A big rule change will always be an interesting situation in such a technical world as Formula 1 is. Teams have been working on their new generation of cars for some time now, as this revamp of the aerodynamic rules was set to enter in 2021, but the Covid-19 pandemic clearly changed the timetable for the Formula 1 world.
Now, ahead of the 2022 Formula 1 season, several teams were certainly looking right into the upcoming season as the main goal, instead of focusing on developing their 2021 challenger. Of course, there are other changes, including a salary cap of $145m per year for every team which started in 2021 and included all areas of car performance.
Wind tunnel hours were also reduced for 2021, based on the previous year’s World Constructors’ Championship (with positions resetting on June 30th of every year), and hours will be reduced for 2021’s Top 8 in 2022. Tyres are also changing for 2022, as the new 18-inch tyres will enter the sport after two years in Formula 2 and several on-track tests from the current teams and Pirelli.
Now, what about the pecking order?
Apart from the obvious change in how the cars will look in 2022, the new era, which will take us back to the Ground Effect era, could certainly be interesting in terms of which teams could grab a strong lead ahead of the rest and compete for the World Drivers’ and World Constructors’ Championship.
In recent times, big rule changes, such as the 2009 change (when aerodynamic rules were changed, slick tyres returned to the sport, and Kinetic Energy Recovering Systems) produced big changes compared with the most recent title battle seen at the time. Ferrari and McLaren were the teams to beat in 2008, with Lewis Hamilton beating Felipe Massa in the final race of the season, while Ferrari took the WCC.
McLaren and Ferrari started off 2009 in dismal form, while they somewhat got in shape for the second half of the year. Brawn GP dominated the first half of the season after taking over the Honda system, while Red Bull rose to prominence and the great form carried over to four consecutive doubles between 2010 and 2013, with Sebastian Vettel dominating the sport.
Obviously, Mercedes went from a simply competitive team in 2013 to the class of the field after the turbo-hybrid era started in 2014, while teams with Mercedes engines flipped their form completely from what 2013 showed us. Williams, for example, finished ninth in 2013 with five points as a team, while it fought for podiums consistently in 2014 and even scored a Pole Position at the 2014 Austrian GP (with Felipe Massa). Could that be the case for 2022? Will a middle-of-the-pack team gain enough to be right at the front of the grid when the circus starts at Bahrain on March 20th? It is definitely an intriguing thought, but we must also say that a team like Mercedes did not put its entire focus on the 2021 title battle, or at least did not forget about the upcoming rule shakeup.
Red Bull, Ferrari and Mercedes could well be at the front next year, but the rest of the midfield, and even those who were at the back of the grid constantly in 2021 could certainly take a huge step forward and become true competitors.
Of course, 2022’s pecking order will not be enough, or should not be end-all-be-all when judging how effective the new rules are in terms of creating better competition and better on-track battles.
The Scuderia Ferrari seems to be a popular pick to hit the ground running in 2022, maybe not to dominate, but certainly to regain its spot as a true contender for the World Championships.
While early betting odds for the 2022 Formula 1 season still expect another title battle between Lewis Hamilton (favorite for many) and 2021 champion Max Verstappen with George Russell closely looking in from behind, the Ferrari drivers, Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz, are often lined up behind the Mercedes’ pair and the champion in terms of betting odds for the 2022 WDC.
One thing is clear, teams like Ferrari and McLaren could become powerhouses in 2022, after finishing third and fourth in the 2021 World Constuctors’ Championship, respectively. While the possibility of one team taking a gigantic leap ahead of any other team is certainly there, it would be much better to see multiple teams with a chance to win any given Grand Prix from 2022 on, even under ‘normal’ circumstances.
The trust in the Scuderia Ferrari could be well-placed, even though the team has been mocked a lot due to strategic mistakes or other flaws shown in the last few years. Looking at the 2017 changes to the cars, when the bigger, wider tyres were introduced and the cars were also widened, along with other tweaks, the Scuderia Ferrari had the best and most versatile car in the eyes of many in 2017 and 2018, which gives it some credibility for the upcoming campaign.
Moreover, Ferrari was one of those teams that looked completely focused in the 2022 rule changes and starting the new era with the right machinery. Still, the 2021 Ferrari challenger improved consistently throughout 2021, and the team could be on the right path heading towards a new era in Formula 1 racing.
The opinions expressed are those of the author's and do not necessarily reflect the opinions or views of F1-Fansite.com, staff or partners.
✅ Check out more posts with related topics: