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Thread: FORMULA 1: REVOLUTION

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    FORMULA 1: REVOLUTION



    The Formula One 2018 season sees the world's most watched motor-sport get a massive overhaul. Changes to the sport include:

    - the grid expanding from 20 cars to 28

    - Practice sessions taking place on a Thursday, Qualifying on a Friday, a new session "Sprint" on a Saturday and the traditional full race on the Sunday. Further details of these sessions will be explained in future posts

    - a more even distribution of finances among all of the teams in the sport

    - a total of 25 Grand Prix throughout the calendar year

    - stronger links created between Formula One and the junior formulas.



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    Preseason Day 1


    After eleven seasons in Formula One Toro Rosso confirmed that it will not be taking part in the 2018 season. Red Bull adviser Helmut Marko explained that the program was no longer need due to the changes that Formula One was currently experiencing. Marko would make it clear though that the 'Toro Rosso' brand wasn't finished, but rather that it was simply taking on a new challenge. (there was no confirmation, but it is rumored that Toro Rosso will look to enter the 2019 Formula-E competition). This news means that five new constructors will be joining the F1 grid.



    Renault Sport were the first of the fourteen teams to make an announcement regarding the 2018 season. The team would confirm that they had retained Nico Hulkenberg as their first driver. It would be revealed that Jolyon Palmer had been dropped from the team in favour of Sebastien Buemi. Buemi returns to F1 after three successful seasons in Formula-E and the move can only be seen as a promotion due to the fact that Buemi had previously been racing for the Renalut e.dams team.


    Williams Martini Racing would also confirm their racing line-up for the new season. Williams would stay true to their word at the close of the 2017 by confirming that Massa would be retiring for the second time and be replaced by Paul Di Resta, whilst Lance Stroll would retain his seat for another year. The team would be unwilling to confirm who the first driver of the team was, but would make it clear that they would make their decision fairly early on in the season. Williams would also confirm that they would be using Mercedes engines for another year.



    Audi Sport confirmed themselves as one of the five new teams that will be competing in the 2018 season. Audi will compete as a works team supplying themselves with their own engine. The team announced that double world champion Fernando Alonso will be the First Driver and that he will be joined by the unbreakable man Robert Kubica. Although the performance of the team is unknown, it is seen that by the pedigree of talent that Audi have signed that they are showing real intent ahead of their maiden season in the sport.




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    Preseason Day 2



    Monster Energy Racing revealed themselves as the second of the new five teams in F1 this season. This announcement would also see the return of the Toyota power-unit (the first time since 2009). The driver line-up for the team comprises of Pascal Wehrlein and Formula 2 Champion Charles Leclerc. Monster made it clear that they had no expectations of winning any titles in their first season, but hoped to be competitive among the other new arrivals.


    The 2017 constructor champions Ferrari announced that 2017 world Champion Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen will remain with the team for the 2018 season. Maurizio Arrivabene would not shy away from commenting that he felt the changes made to the sport were unnecessary and only been put in place to 'aid' the smaller teams and focus on quantity over quality.




    McLaren Honda are already without Alonso (after the Spaniard left for Audi Sport). The team retained Stoffel Vandoorne as they second driver, although with funds clearly being freed up after the loss of the double world champion the Honda powered team pushed the boat out and signed Danica Patrick bringing an end to her racing career in America. The introduction of Danica means that a woman will be on the F1 grid for the first time since 1992.





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    Preseason Day 3



    Mercedes AMG Petronas confirmed that Lewis Hamilton would retain his position as the team's first driver. However, Mercedes wouldn't renew Valterri Bottas' contract and instead decided to offer the second seat to their test driver and up and coming British talent George Russell. Some pundits would say that putting Russell in such a high profile seat to start his F1 career could just as easily break him as make him.



    Haas F1 would show loyalty to both their drivers with Roman Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen retaining their seat for the 2018 season. Haas would also confirm that it would continue to use the Ferrari power-unit for the foreseeable future.



    The Sauber team would reveal to have ended its deal with Mercedes and instead reforging a previous partnership with BMW, thus the team once again being known as the BMW Sauber F1 Team. BMW Sauber would decide to promote reserve driver Giovinazzi as well as signing former Toro Rosso driver Carlos Sainz.



    Ford Racing unveiled their entry into the sport as the second active works team in Formula One. The team unveiled the their line-up as former Williams and Mercedes driver Valtteri Bottas and American Alexander Rossi. The team's principle would make it clear that their primary goal was to outperform Haas F1 and be the top team in the States.


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    Preseason Day 4

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    Preseason Day 4



    Perez and Ocon both resigned with the Sahara Force India Team, who also announced their continued relationship with Mercedes.



    Red Bull Racing would seem to copy Force India's example by not rushing into announcing that they too would be retaining the services of Daniel Ricciardo and and Max Verstappen. Team Principle Christian Horner would make it clear that Red Bull Racing would continue its partnership with Renault, although it was actively seeking a new engine supplier for the 2019 season.


    Jaguar returns to the sport for the first time since 2004 in partnership with Panasonic. The team sees a Brazilian double pairing of Felipe Nasr (last with Sauber in 2016) and Lucas Di Grassi (the 2017 Formula-E world champion, who had one season in F1 with the Virgin Racing team). The pair made it clear that they saw Jaguar's entry as their redemption in the sport.




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    Preseason Day 5


    Citreon Formula One Team launched as the final team that will be entering the sport in the 2018 season (and it was noted that Citreon have a direct partnership with DS Virgin Racing in Formula E) which links in to Sam Bird being unveiled as the team First Team Driver. The second driver for the team is a fellow Brit and experienced racer Jolyon Palmer. With now twenty-eight drivers announced to take part in the season this bring all the team announcements to a finish.
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    ROUND ONE: AUSTRALIA - PRACTICE SESSION


    Practice Session Update
    The practice session of the season acted as a clear indicator as to what the expected order for the season might be. Sitting at the top of the order was Mercedes with Lewis Hamilton looking like the strongest of the pack and it must be noted that rookie driver George Russell looked very comfortable in the car and was posting some very impressive lap times. Ferrari (both Vettel & Raikkonen), Red Bull Racing (Verstappen & Ricciardo) and Audi Sport (Kubica & Alonso) being not that much further behind. Audi's impressive times would suggest that the combination of a strong driver line-up as well as potentially title challenging power unit could bring the team success in their first season in the sport.

    The midfield would be be led by McLaren Honda and Force India, with the likes of Haas Racing, Williams, Monster Energy Racing and Renault Sport doing their best to bridge the gap.

    Ford Racing
    (Bottas & Rossi) would start the session well, although it would be noted that they would struggle with their straight line speed, whilst BMW Sauber (Sainz & Giovinazzi) would have good first sectors but the car would seem to struggle in sector three.

    Citroen would have a terrible session with Sam Bird crashing out and damaging the car, whilst Jolyon Palmer would have an engine failure on his out-lap.

    Felipe Nasr and Lucas Di Grassi would really suffer in the session as the Jaguar Racing's cars would never even leave the garage, if the team citing the problem as an electronic errors.


    Top Five
    1. Lewis Hamilton
    2. George Russell
    3. Sebastian Vettel
    4. Daniel Ricciardo
    5. Fernando Alosno





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