Weekend in Review: 19 – 20 March
This weekend saw the exciting return of the FIA Formula 1 World Championship, and action-packed races in the Formula 2 and Formula 3 Championships.
FIA Formula 1 – Sakhir, Bahrain
This weekend saw the exciting return of the FIA Formula 1 World Championship with the 2022 Bahrain Grand Prix. The new regulations have already proven to cause exciting, close racing during the first event of the season.
Sunday’s ‘Driver of the day,’ Charles Leclerc obtained pole position during qualifying, providing an exciting start to Ferrari’s season after a few years of disappointment, with Max Verstappen qualifying second and Carlos Sainz in third.
Verstappen and Leclerc battled it out throughout the race with Max throwing his car down the inside of turn one and overtaking Charles on two occasions. Leclerc put the fight right back at Verstappen as he regained first place on both occasions. Verstappen attempted one last time, however his tyres started to weaken, and he was not able to achieve the overtake, but did manage to hang on to the second-place position for most of the race.
The Red Bull powertrain was cause for concern with Pierre Gasly, Sergio Perez and Max Verstappen’s first race of the season ending with a DNF. This worked in favour of Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and George Russell; despite the concern for their 2022 contender, they managed to rake in third and fourth, respectively. Leclerc led Ferrari to victory with Carlos Sainz following closely behind in second to give the Scuderia their first 1-2 since 2019. Kevin Magnussen returned to Formula 1 with a triumphant result of P5 for the Haas driver, proving that there have been a lot of improvements made to their 2022 contender.
The Bahrain Grand Prix was a bad day in the office for McLaren who were unable to obtain any points and were well off the pace, with Daniel Ricciardo finishing in P14 and Lando Norris close behind in P15.
There is not much time for fans to wait for the next race with the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix taking place on the 27th March.
FIA Formula 2 – Sakhir, Bahrain
The first Formula 2 feature race of the season was won by ART Grand Prix’s Theo Pourchaire, ahead of Carlin’s Liam Lawson. Pole sitter Jack Doohan had his position snatched away from him during a scuffle with Pourchaire as he exited the pits and gained damage to his front wing; Pourchaire managed to evade damage and took first place from the Australian.
Hitech’s Marcus Armstrong made impressive progress during the feature race, starting 13th and eventually finishing P5. Jack Doohan managed to recover well from earlier disappointment, given his extra pit stop and ended up claiming 10th place. Van Armersfoort Racing driver Jake Hughes finished 9th and Olli Caldwell finished 17th.
The FIA Formula 2 Championship will be joining Formula 1 in Saudi Arabia.
FIA Formula 3 – Sakhir, Bahrain
ART Grand Prix driver Victor Martins took home the first feature race win of the FIA Formula 3 season, patiently waiting to gain pole position after starting the race in P3. Arthur Leclerc produced a solid drive finishing in second after starting the race in 13th. Franco Colapinto crossed the line in third place, however a track limits violation landed him with a five second time penalty meaning that Gregoire Saucy claimed third place, leaving Colapinto in fifth.
Jonny Edgar just missed out on the points finishing in 11th, with 17th, 18th and 19th being awarded to Reece Ushjima, Zak O’Sullivan, and Ayrton Simmons, respectively. Oliver Bearman had a solid end to the feature race, finishing sixth.
Round two of the FIA Formula 3 Championship will be in Imola on 22nd-24th April.