The highlight of this month’s sporting fixtures has to be the beginning of the 2019 Formula 1 season. There’s been plenty of surprise team changes, as only 10 drivers remain with the team they raced with last season. With plenty of exciting new faces joining the line-up alongside old favourites, this season is set to be a thriller. The season will begin on March 17th in Melbourne with the Australian Grand Prix, and the Bahrain Grand Prix also scheduled for March 31st – we here at Wincomparator can’t wait! Check out the bookmakers that offer the best odds on this season’s F1 Championship at the Wincomparator site.
Drivers and Teams
The 2019 starting grid will have a whole new look following a massive shake up in the Drivers/Teams line up. There’s definitely plenty of exciting new driver pairings to anticipate – will rivalries develop between new teammate pairings such as the one we saw between Daniel Riccairdo and Max Verstappen at Red Bull next year?
Here’s the line-up of teams and drivers for the 2019 F1 season:
|Kimi Räikkönen||7||Alfa Romeo Racing||Alfa Romeo Racing-Ferrari|
|Antonio Giovanazzi||99||Alfa Romeo Racing||Alfa Romeo Racing-Ferrari|
|Sebastian Vettel||5||Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow||Ferrari|
|Charles Leclerc||16||Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow||Ferrari|
|Romain Grosjean||8||Rich Energy Haas F1 Team||Haas-Ferrari|
|Kevin Magnussen||20||Rich Energy Haas F1 Team||Haas-Ferrari|
|Lewis Hamilton||44||Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport||Mercedes|
|Valterri Bottas||77||Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport||Mercedes|
|Lando Norris||4||McLaren F1 Team||McLaren-Renault|
|Carlos Sainz Jr.||55||McLaren F1 Team||McLaren-Renault|
|Sergio Perez||11||SportPesa Racing Point F1 Team||Racing-Point Mercedes|
|Lance Stroll||18||SportPesa Racing Point F1 Team||Racing-Point Mercedes|
|Pierre Gasly||3||Aston Martin Red Bull Racing||Red Bull Racing-Honda|
|Max Verstappen||27||Aston Martin Red Bull Racing||Red Bull Racing-Honda|
|Daniel Ricciardo||3||Renault F1 Team||Renault|
|Nico Hulkenberg||27||Renault F1 Team||Renault|
|Alexander Albon||23||Red Bull Torro Rosso Honda||Scuderia Torro Rosso-Honda|
|Daniil Kvyat||26||Red Bull Torro Rosso Honda||Scuderia Torro Rosso-Honda|
|George Russell||63||ROKiT Williams Racing||Williams-Mercedes|
|Robert Kubica||88||ROKiT Williams Racing||Williams-Mercedes|
Drivers to Watch
A horde of new faces have joined the fan-favourites in this year’s F1 line-up, so we’ve broken down the grid to give you an idea of the old favourites to win the Drivers Championship, and the young competition they’ll need to watch out for.
Drivers Championship Favourites
Fresh off the back of his 5th world title – his 4th in 5 years – Lewis Hamilton has been the star of the F1 grid in recent years. The British national scored a record-breaking 408 points to claim the Drivers Championship title last year, a points tally higher than any other driver in an F1 season. Will this season see Lewis and Mercedes dominate the F1 standings, or will his dreams of a 6th F1 world title be challenged?
It’s been a while since Sebastian Vettel last won the Drivers Championship, as he it was in 2013 that he won his 4th and most recent world title. Now entering his third season with Ferrari, Vettel will be hoping to cause an upset to Hamilton’s recent dominance, and claim his 5th world title. The 31 year-old also has the chance to become the driver with the most podiums won in different F1 Grand Prix, alongside his old Maranello teammate Kimi Raikkonen, with a win in France and Azerbaijan – he has won all other 24 out of 26 podiums.
Formula 1 veteran Kimi Raikkonen is entering his 16th Formula 1 Season with a return to Alfa Romeo (formerly known as Sauber). The Iceman is still a fan favourite, and has showed that he still has what it takes to compete for a world title after finishing third in the Championship standings last year behind Hamilton and Vettel. The 39 year old will be hoping to again challenge for the title this year after going back to his roots with a return to the team he started his F1 career with in 2001.
Since Verstappen became the youngest driver to compete in F1 with Toro Rosso in 2015 – aged only 17 – the Dutch national has quickly risen through the rankings to become one of the top contenders for the drivers Championship title. The 21-year old finished 4th last season, his third with Red Bull. Following the departure of his previous teammate Daniel Ricciardo, with whom Verstappen had a contentious relationship on the track, he will undoubtedly be Red Bull’s best option for contention of the 2019 F1 title.
As you have undoubtedly seen in the press, Charles Leclerc has been coined as the next big thing to happen to Formula 1. The Monégasque began his Formula 1 career last season with Sauber, and turned heads with his impressive rookie performance. The 21 year old has joined Sebastian Vettel at Ferrari this season, and while it is doubtful that he will be a real contender for the title, he will surely turn some heads in his second F1 season.
21 year old George Russell has joined Williams for his first season in the World Driving Championship. The British national will certainly be an exciting prospect for the future, as he has seen plenty of success in the F2 and F3 Championships, joining F1 after claiming last year’s F2 title – for the seasons to come he’s definitely one to watch!
2019 Constructors Championship Contenders
With 6 back-to-back Constructors Championship titles to thier name between 2014 and 2018, a title this season would see Mercedes equal Ferrari’s record of the most consecutive titles (6). The Northampton-based team have been the ones to beat for the past five years, although they have seen some design issues following the implementation of this season’s new aerodynamic rules requiring a wider front wing. The question for 2019 is: can this Anglo-German team keep Ferrari at bay?
Ferrari looked like a new team during this season’s first week of testing in Barcelona. With a strong driver pair in Sebastian Vettel and new-signing Charles Leclerc, this could be the season that Ferrari cause and major upset to Mercedes dominance. Under new team principal Mattia Binotto, the mood is looking positive heading into the beginning of the 2019 season in mid-March. The Italians have not won the Constructors Championship since 2008, and so will be hoping to return to their winning ways in 2019.
Red Bull have youth on their side with driver pair Max Verstappen and Pierre Gasly – the future looks bright for the Austrians. Red Bull have not won a Constructors Championship since their run of 4 back-to-back titles ended in 2013, and finished last season at 3rd place, behind Mercedes and Ferrari in the Championship standings. Like Mercedes, the outlook on the effect of the new regulations to the Red Bull car has not been overly positive, but they have tested well at the Circuit de Catalunya. Could the move to their new partnership with Honda be the difference for Red Bull this season?
Formula 1 2019 Calendar
|1||Australian||Melbourne Grand Prix Circuit||17 March|
|2||Bahrain||Bahrain International Circuit||31 March|
|3||Chinese||Shanghai International Circuit||14 April|
|4||Azerbaijan||Baku City Circuit||28 April|
|5||Spanish||Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya||12 May|
|6||Monaco||Circuit de Monaco||26 May|
|7||Canadian||Circuit Gilles Villeneuve||9 June|
|8||French||Circuit Paul Ricard||23 June|
|9||Austrian||Red Bull Ring||30 June|
|10||British||Silverstone Circuit||14 July|
|13||Belgian||Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps||1 September|
|14||Italian||Autodromo Nazionale Monza||8 September|
|15||Singapore||Marina Bay Street Circuit||22 September|
|16||Russian||Sochi Autodrom||29 September|
|17||Japanese||Suzuka International Racing Course||13 October|
|18||Mexican||Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez||27 October|
|19||United States||Circuit of the Americas||3 November|
|20||Brazilian||Autódromo José Carlos Pace||17 November|
|21||Abu Dhabi||Yas Marina Circuit||1 December|