By Sukhmani Bratch
We begin with the Dutch Grand Prix at Zandvoort! Unsurprisingly, Verstappen absolutely dominated his home racetrack as well as pretty much every other race this season. However, there was an unexpected face on the podium, Pierre Gasly! Considering that Alpine isn’t usually a podium contender, this is an amazing feat, beating the likes of Carlos Sainz and Sergio Pérez. Unfortunately, this weekend Daniel Ricciardo broke his wrist and wasn’t able to race.
Next is the Italian Grand Prix at Autodromo Nationale Monza. This is a particularly important race for Ferrari being as it’s an Italian company. Ferrari never fails to impress with their race suits, especially considering the overflow of memes that generally seem to come with them.
Sadly, Ferrari didn’t get their P1 and P2. However, they did get P3 and P4, which is good when you take into account their various inconsistencies throughout the rest of the season.
The Singapore Grand Prix at the Marina Bay Street Circuit threw Red Bull off their game, as the car wasn’t performing properly. Therefore, this made Carlos Sainz the first driver, who isn’t in a Red Bull to win a race in the 2023 season. Also, neither of the Red Bull drivers made it onto podium unfortunately. The highest position for a Red Bull was Max Verstappen in P5. He was beaten out by Carlos Sainz (P1), Lando Norris (P2), Lewis Hamilton (P3) and Charles Leclerc (P4).
The Japanese Grand Prix at Suzuka expectedly had Max Verstappen winning the race with Norris and Piastri finishing second and third respectively. However, there was some confusion during the virtual safety car (VSC). The reason for the virtual safety car was a crash between Pérez and Magnussen. Lando Norris was cost 10 seconds due to Pérez’s slow-moving car during the VSC as Norris couldn’t risk the overtake costing him a penalty. This resulted them almost crashing at the end of the VSC as Norris was on the outside of Pérez. Charles Leclerc was also confused during the VSC as he thought that Max was leaving the race, which moved Leclerc to P3, when it was actually Pérez due to damage on the car.
Finally, is the Qatar Grand Prix at Losail. There was a lot of controversy surrounding this race. However, before I discuss that there was one DNS (Did Not Start) from Ferrari for Carlos Sainz as roughly one hour before the race there was a fuel issue that was seemingly too large to fix beforehand. Also in the first few laps there was a crash between Hamilton and Russell. This caused Hamilton to DNF (Did Not Finish). Now, on to the controversy surrounding this race. Many drivers reported feeling sick during the race. Alex Albon and Lance Stroll, as well as many other drivers headed straight to the medical wing. Esteban Ocon threw up in his helmet between laps 15-16. Fernando Alonso seat was burning him, and he asked on the radio to have cold water thrown on him and his car, but it wasn’t allowed. Many fans have voiced their concerns over this race being held during these excruciatingly hot months and even though there is a ten year contract with the track, many have said the timing of the race needs to be moved or it needs to be taken off the calendar.