F1 2020 Season Preview - 10 Things To Look Out For
Posted on March 3, 2020
The start of the 2020 F1 Season is nearly upon us. Fittingly 20 F1 cars will be on the grid for the 2020 season. The 2020 F1 Season will be the 71st season of the Formula 1 World Championship.
1) A new Grand Prix in Hanoi, Vietnam
Vietnam hosts a Grand Prix for the first time ever. Held in April on the streets of Hanoi, it will be the 3rd Grand Prix of the season. Subsequently, the Hanoi Street Circuit is the first-ever track that Formula 1 has designed. It is designed to be a ‘proper driver’s track’ and it has been based on the best bit of other tracks. Featuring a 1.5km straight, it will set pulses racing.
2) The Longest Season in the History of the Sport and a return to Zandvoort
The season is scheduled to run from March 13th until November 29th, the longest ever. It will start in Australia and conclude in Abu Dhabi.
Despite Germany’s Grand Prix dropping off, there will be a record 22 races. It includes Vietnam as mentioned above, plus the first Dutch Grand Prix for 35 years. The Zandvoort track has been updated significantly since Niki Lauda last won the Dutch Grand Prix in 1985.
3) Is Lewis Hamilton set to break more Records?
The reigning champion will break more records this season. He is on course to match Michael Schumacher’s seven championship wins if he retains the title he won last year. Schumacher holds the record at 91 Grand Prix wins. Hamilton is currently on 84 Grand Prix wins so needs 7 more to beat Schumacher’s record. The earliest he can do this is in Azerbaijan in June, the 7th race of the season.
4) 18 Drivers Remain at the Same Team
Following major upheaval’s in the driver market last season, there remains some stability for 2020. Of the 20 drivers, 18 will start the new season in the same driver seats. The exceptions are Renault who recruited Esteban Ocon, and Williams who signed up Nichola Latifi.
5) Reinstatement of the Traditional End-of-Race Chequered Flag
F1 are planning major rule changes in 2021 so only minor rule changes have been introduced this season. They include the prevention of drivers using their clutches to make faster starts and storing large amounts of excess fuel outside their fuel tanks, penalties for missing the weight bridge, and the chequered flag being used again as the official finish signal.
6) Get Ready for a Driver-Focused Championship
It is expected for 2021 that the most proactive Championship team that gets on top of the major rule changes will come out on top. This means that the lucky driver who competes for that team will most likely win the Driver’s Championship. Again, only minor changes are expected this season, meaning there will be a bunch of genuine contenders with more focus on driver skill, rather than enhanced car technology.
7) The Final Season of F1 2017-2020 Generation Cars
Following on from the previous two points and the major rule changes expected in 2021. It will the last season of the F1 cars as we have known in the previous seasons. The current V6 hybrid turbo 1600c engines Mk 1 will be replaced with an engine facelift, making them a Mk II. It will be the final season of the 13-inch F1 wheel rims. They will be replaced with a mandatory 18-inch wheel rim in 2021.
8) Kimi Raikkonen is set to become the most experienced F1 Driver of all time
The current record is set by Rubens Barrichello with 322 Grand Prix starts. Raikkonen is currently on 313 Grand Prix starts. Assuming he starts the first ten Grand Prix’s of 2020 he will beat Barrichello’s record at the Austrian Grand Prix in July. An amazing achievement for one of the sport’s greatest servants.
9) The Year of The Rookies
The 2019 super-rookies performed extremely well in 2019. George Russell, Lando Norris and Alex Albon all made it into the ‘top 10 best drivers of the year’ list last year. We expect each of the drivers to build upon their successes of last season. Albon will benefit from Red Bull’s advanced machinery and technology.
10) Fun and games at Ferrari
There is no love lost between the drivers at Ferrari. Sebastian Vettel and Charles Leclerc’s volatile relationship is expected to bubble again this season. Tempers flared at the Brazilian Grand Prix last season when Leclerc took himself and Vettel out of the race. Leclerc is signed up to Ferrari until 2024 whilst Vettel is soon to be out of contact.
The season is due to start at Albert Park in Melbourne on March 13th. We’re looking forward to yet another exciting season. For any Signed F1 Sporting Memorabilia be sure to check out Firma Stella’s extensive collection.