The F1 2023 Season is set to be an incredible one. We come into this season with high hopes after the winter break and the car reveals. Since this year is the 2nd year in this new era of F1, the teams have used their data and knowledge from last year to come up with new innovations for this year. And one of the common themes with all of the teams is the major reduction in the amount of paint they’re using on their cars. All of the teams are moving towards having more parts of the car in black paint or carbon fibre in order to reduce the weight of the car. Paint typically makes up around 6kg of the weight of the car, which is why the teams are reducing the amount of paint they use.
Along with the paint, there are innovations related to the car body and aerodynamic features themselves. The Mercedes W14 had a noticeably aggressive engine cover, along with a similar “sidepod-less” design that they used last year. And like we saw last year, we’ve seen more new sidepod designs. One sidepod I noticed was the Aston Martin – it discreetly creates a tunnel through the sidepod.
In this post, we’ll see the Top 5 races to look forward to in the F1 2023 Season. Along with technical innovation, calendar changes make for some very exciting races in 2023. We’re going to see 6 sprint races, 23 races in total, and 2 new races. Our Top 5 List comes from races that proved to be exciting last year, along with races that have the potential to be exciting this year. Let’s dive into the analysis of why we think these races will be fan favorites!
2023 Bahrain Grand Prix
This one is an obvious one. First of all it’s the season opener of the F1 2023 Season, so everyone’s looking forward to it anyways. It’s the first time we’re going to see the cars this year, and it’s the first racing action we’re going to see since the 2022 season. However, I think the Bahrain GP is going to be a fantastic race by its own merit. Many saw the 2022 Bahrain GP as one of the best races of the year. We got to witness loads of drama and action.
First of all, Ferrari were back on track after their hiatus from winning ways. We got to see Ferrari battling for the race win for the first time since 2019. That came along with some fantastic on-track battles between Charles Leclerc and Max Verstappen. Leclerc was leading the race, and Verstappen repeatedly tried to overtake Leclerc, with Leclerc playing it smarter and using DRS down the 2nd straight to re-overtake Verstappen and secure his lead. The race was spiced up heavily by the dramatic failure of both of the Red Bull engines extremely late in the race. It was shocking, and it resulted in a Ferrari 1-2 and a Mercedes podium, leaving many fans happy, but all the Red Bull fans in pain.
The late drama and the battles for the lead weren’t where it stopped however. Some outstanding performances happened at the Bahrain GP. Zhou Guanyu scored points on his debut race, finishing in P10. Valtteri Bottas had a surprisingly good race in the other Alfa Romeo with a P6 finish. And of course, the Viking Comeback of Kevin Magnussen. On his return to F1, he finished in P5. It was spectacular. The race was a thrilling one, and I certainly believe that the 2023 Bahrain GP will be the same, if not better.
2023 Las Vegas Grand Prix
The 2023 Las Vegas Grand Prix will undoubtedly be one if, of not the most heavily-awaited races of the F1 2023 Season. Formula 1 has shown a huge interest in moving towards a seemingly untapped fanbase in the United States. That’s why we’ve got 3 races in the US in 2023. The US GP will take place at COTA as usual. The Miami GP will take place after being introduced in 2022. And now we’ve got the Last Vegas GP. The Las Vegas GP is like a pot of money waiting for F1. The ticket prices will be through the roof, and the entire purpose of the event is glamour and hitting viewership targets. With Vegas being a playground for the rich, F1 will be expecting to make plenty of money from the event.
Undoubtedly there will be a ton of celebrities and wealthy people attending the race, which could see F1 selling incredibly expensive tickets, along with getting more exposure and expanding their American fanbase. Apart from the fact that the circuit literally goes down the Las Vegas Strip, the fact that the race starts at Saturday night at 10pm local time shows that this race is all about standing out and being the biggest haul of income for F1 in 2023. I am very interested in this race not only to see how it is going to be special, but to see if the racing will actually be entertaining.
With most of the circuit being at full throttle and a gargantuan 1.9km straight down the Las Vegas Strip, I can’t help but worry that the race itself will be a flop and won’t be worth watching on TV. While this is a huge opportunity for F1 to attract new fans, will the race turn out to be unpopular among the existing and? Will the fans that watch F1 for the true racing face disappointment and experience a boring race Comment below how you think the Las Vegas GP will turn out!
2023 British Grand Prix
The British Grand Prix is a race that I can’t wait to see this year. The 2022 British Grand Prix was incredible. The fans voted it as the best race of the year, and it’s clear to see why. There are multiple reasons why the British GP has improved its status despite already being a fan favorite. First of all, in recent years, the British Grand Prix has been one of the most exciting races. In 2020, Lewis Hamilton limped across the finish line with a punctured tire to win his home race. In 2021, the championship contenders had a dramatic entangle, with Verstappen facing a major crash. And despite the 10-second penalty, Hamilton beat Charles Leclerc to the race win. Since 2022 continued the string of strong British GPs, I’m hoping for another blockbuster one this season.
Secondly, Zhou Guanyu’s crash. The major crash was all over the news for days since it was one of the largest crashes in recent F1 history. While it’s hugely concerning and dangerous, it is the biggest form of drama in F1, and it attracts fans to the sport. Thankfully, it’s not every day that you see a car barrel-rolling over a tire barrier and into the fence. It’s unbelievable. Thirdly, Carlos Sainz’s win. The Tifosi and the Spanish F1 fans would’ve been delighted by the win. Sainz clinched his first-ever race win at the British GP, which will surely see the Tifosi looking forward to the 2023 British GP.
And of course, the racing action was fantastic! As you can see in the image above, there was a moment where 4 cars went into one corner. There were battles in the midfield as the midfield cars jostled for position. Different strategy games were at play. Verstappen faced an issue with his car that saw him bogging down the order. And then there is THAT overtake. Lewis Hamilton making that slick move up the inside to clinch 2 positions out of the Vale chicane was incredible. It’s iconic, and will forever be regarded as one of the best moments of the 2022 F1 Season. It was most certainly a highlight.
This season, because of how the British GP consistently entertains fans, and how the 2022 British GP was exceptionally exciting, the 2023 British GP is certainly one to watch.
2023 Spanish Grand Prix
The Spanish Grand Prix is generally known to be a boring race. The Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya has features that made it known for ruining the racing action. First of all, the final sector chicane was notorious. It would ruin a car’s chances to follow the car ahead and successfully battle in the last sector leading to the main straight. And then, in the middle sector, the dirty air from a car ahead would result in the car behind struggling to keep up and challenge for a position.
However, I am very excited to see the F1 2023 Spanish GP. First of all, the Circuit’s socials recently announced that, much to the fans’ delight, they changed the layout of the final sector. The cars would take the fast right-hander as the penultimate corner once again. That was the layout before the introduction of the chicane, and the fans have been asking for that change to be made FOR YEARS.
Secondly, last year’s Spanish GP was a great one. Much to the surprise of the fans, we saw some great racing action. For the first time in his career, George Russell was a genuine contender for the race win. He put up a hugely strong defense against the Red Bulls, but eventually lost out to the faster cars. Sergio Perez was on track to taking a race win, but Red Bull once again used their team order to give Verstappen the advantage and the race win. Despite leading the race, Charles Leclerc faced a shocking engine failure, handing that 1st place trophy to his rivals. Hopefully, the racing action is even better this year, and the Spanish Grand Prix can be part of a fantastic F1 2023 season.
2023 Qatar Grand Prix
The 2023 Qatar Grand Prix is most definitely a race to look forward to. In 2021, Formula 1 raced in Qatar for the first time. The race acted as a replacement for the cancelled Australian GP and brought a lot of speculation. The cars raced on the Lusail Circuit. The MotoGP World is familiar with the circuit, since it’s been on the MotoGP calendar. However, is the circuit fit for Formula 1?
The circuit seems like a great track for qualifying – with a range of twists and turns and high-speed corners, I’m quite excited to race cars on that circuit in the F1 game. But these smooth curves are not designed for F1. They’re a much better fit for a MotoGP race, and provide overtaking opportunities in MotoGP. In F1, these curves are not sharp enough. The circuit doesn’t have any significant straights apart from the main straight. Even Turn 1 is a fairly long and smooth hairpin. These corners aren’t the perfect fit for Formula 1 racing. And that raises concerns as to whether there can be proper racing action.
The 2021 Qatar GP was a fairly good race. There was an interesting strategic battle afoot, with an intense ending as Perez tried to catch Alonso for the podium. Turn 1 seemed to be the hotspot for overtaking – but unfortunately it was the only spot. The rest of the circuit simply didn’t have places where you could realistically challenge for positions. DRS was too strong down the main straight, which took away from the racing action.
But in 2023, I have hope that the race will be even better than before. With the new era of cars being able to follow closely, battles should extend beyond Turn 1 and through the twists and turns of the circuit. That could prove to the fans that F1 has made the right decision to put this race on the calendar for 10 years. Hopefully, DRS isn’t as OP (although realistically it will probably still be). And lastly, Qatar is one of the sprint race weekends. That could be positive in terms of the race’s reputation and popularity. With some exciting races on the calendar, the F1 2023 season will be a fantastic one. Thanks for reading, enjoy F1ntastic, and enjoy the Bahrain GP!