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Lights out and away goes the F1 season

The past two weekends marked the official start of the Formula 1 season with the Bahrain Grand Prix and the Saudi Arabia Grand Prix. Photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons.

The past two weekends marked the official start of the Formula 1 season with the Bahrain Grand Prix and the Saudi Arabia Grand Prix. Fans of the sport have already begun making their predictions as the season continues and comparing the current season to the 2023 season. 

With no crashes in the opening weekend and all drivers finishing the race, the Bahrain Grand Prix was seen as tame by fans and F1 standards. The three drivers who finished on the podium were Carlos Sainz from Ferrari in third, Sergio Perez from Red Bull in second, and Max Verstappen from Red Bull in first, which also marks Verstappen’s first win of the season after winning the World Championship in the 2023 season.  

The Red Bull first and second place seemed predictable to many fans as the team dominated the 2023 year. Fans started comparing the new season to the past season with Red Bull fans hoping to have a repeat victory of the Driver and Constructors Championship. 

Other fans have opposing feelings. “After the first race I was not surprised that Red Bull won again, just because of how well they did last year but I have hope in Ferrari,” Ferrari fan Casey Camacho said. “Even though there were issues, it seems like both drivers are still trying to compete with Red Bull.” 

While Ferrari fans dealt with Sainz suddenly off the grid for the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix because of a surgery, they still celebrated with Leclerc on the podium.  

Sainz was replaced by Ferrari reserve driver and Formula 2 driver Prema Ollie Bearman. All eyes were on 18-year-old Bearman as he got one hour of practice before qualifying where he took 11th place. During the race, Bearman climbed the ranks and finished 7th ahead of several experienced drivers, including Lando Norris in a McLaren and seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton in a Mercedes.  

Sainz’s performance was praised by fans who think this demonstrated that he is ready to join F1 in the 2025 season. This may be a realistic prediction as many driver’s contracts finish at the end of 2024 leaving seats up for grabs for new up and coming drivers.  

One disappointing performance through the past two races has been that of Lewis Hamilton having finished seventh in Bahrain and ninth in Saudi Arabia. Hamilton fans have started to speculate the reasoning for the previous world champions’ low standings. 

“I was disappointed, Lewis has done so much better than this before,” said Mercedes fan Alejandro Delgado. “I don’t know if it’s the car, the strategy, or just him, or maybe because his moving to Ferrari but it’s not working out.” 

The beginning of the F1 season has had no shortage of drama. According to Sky Sports, team principle and CEO of Red Bull Racing, Christian Horner, is facing allegations of inappropriate behavior towards a female colleague. Horner denied all allegations and after an internal investigation by Red Bull the allegations were dismissed.  

Ahead of the Bahrain Grand Prix, anonymous emails containing evidence of the allegations got leaked to the media and the accuser was said to have been suspended with pay. While Horner could not comment on the news, he reinforced his denial of the allegations.  

“I think being a women fan of F1 is hard enough, seeing these allegations, the responses and how it is being handled I think shows a lot of female fans that the sport is still very male dominated,” said McLaren fan Jasmine Gomez.  

As the season continues to unfold fans will continue to root for their teams but also some fans will continue to look towards F1 and the Fédération International de L’Automobile (FIA)who are the governing body of motorsport racing events, including F1 for their responses and actions to the Horner allegations and better responses from the drivers that have not commented yet. 

With the F1 season under way, many fans were delighted to see their favorite teams and racers back on the track and as the season progresses fans are excited to see how the F1 Academy continues to develop and diversify the sport and organization. 

Ximena Cordero is a staff reporter and may be reached at [email protected].

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About the Contributor
Ximena Cordero
Ximena Cordero, Staff Reporter
Ximena Cordero is a freshman at The University of Texas at El Paso. She is a staff reporter at The Prospector. She is majoring in communications and deciding between a minor in creative writing or English literature. After graduating, she would like to pursue a master's degree, work as a journalist or communication specialist, and maybe even write her own books. She wants a career that will allow her to explore the world and see new perspectives and cultures.
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