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2020 Formula 1 Preview & Predictions

Preseason testing is fully underway and the Formula 1 season is just around the bend, kicking off on March 13th at the Australian Grand Prix.

Let’s look at potential outcomes and preview the 2020 F1 season and make a few predictions as well.

No Sheer Driver’s Championship Domination

Lewis Hamilton is looking for his seventh Formula 1 title and last year, with a few races to go, it was all but in the bag. That will change this season. Ferrari made some massive mistakes last season and it cost them. I expect Team Ferrari to right many of their wrongs and give Mercedes and Hamilton a run for their money. Redbull and Mad Verstappen will be right in the mix as well. He’s improving and harry both the Mercedes and Ferrari drivers.

Sure, Lewis Hamilton may win his seventh driver’s championship, but in 2020 it will come down to the final race. Hamilton, LeClerc, and Verstappen will all be in the hunt right up until the end of the season. There is a strong possibility that the battle for the best driver in the sport could be between five men. Bottas and Vettel could also end up right in the middle of it, at least while there are still few races to go in the season.

The Return of McLaren

McLaren has been pretty stale for the last six or seven years. But 2019 marked a turning point for the British team. It was their best season since 2013 and they have two drivers that are on the up. Carlos Sainz is in his best form and 20-year-old Lando Norris is growing into his own.

What does this mean for Team McLaren and us as spectators? It means that we will see McLaren on the podium periodically in 2020 and they will move away from the mid-packers and begin the hunt for the constructors’ championship anew.

A Replacement for Vettel

We very well could see Sebastian Vettel retire by the end of the season. But this depends on how well LeClerc drives. If LeClerc continues to dominate, are quite likely to see Vettel bow out.

But who will replace the racing legend if he does, in fact, retire?

My money would be on Daniel Ricciardo. To be honest, it isn’t going to be Antonio Giovinazzi because he’s just not good enough. The same goes for Mick Schumacher. Kevin Magnussen is an option but there might be serious team dynamic issues created by putting he and LeClerc together. We could see them try to pull Valterri Bottas or even Carlos Sainz. But I think it will be the Italian, Ricciardo. He placed 9th overall and frequently finishes in the top-5. So, he would add a measure of consistency to back up LeClerc.

Alexander Albon Gets First Podium Appearance

We saw both Pierre Gasly and Carlos Sainz get their first-ever podiums in 2019 and we are likely to see a couple more new faces to F1 podium club. Namely, Alexander Albon. The Rookie of the Year winner has the guts and the skills to run up front with the big boys. So, we should see him standing on the podium at some point in 2020.

Lando Norris could get his first podium and help to push McLaren up the ranks further. He had a great rookie season and you could see that there is a ton of potential in this young driver. I wouldn’t be surprised if he podiums in 2020 as well.

Everyone talking About Haas

This team will no longer be a Haas-been, but build on a terrible showing in 2019. The American team started earlier than the rest when it came to getting their car ready for the 2020 season and they still have Kevin Magnussen and Romain Grosjean. So, we should see a bit more cohesiveness out of noir cars. They won’t lay an avocado of a season like they did last time around and we’ll see Haas pull away from the middle of the field more often. It’s hard to say how far away that will be, but I’m going big and bold and calling a return to the Top 6 or 7 in 2020.

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