Melbourne Grand Prix

Ahead of the Melbourne Grand Prix 2022: key outlines we look forward to

Finally back! Formula 1 returns to Australia after a two-year absence. Upgraded with a new track layout and, however, with better racing in mind, Albert Park opens the doors for fans. Excited! Emotions are boiling up at the moment as new leadership and own stories in Formula 1 have formed ahead of the Melbourne Grand Prix 2022.

F1 Australia: from the rushed 2020 season to the sustainable 2022.

Today it’s difficult to imagine, but the last Australian Grand Prix was like one vague action. The world was a different place in 2020, as the Covid-19 pandemic was just unfolding. F1 teams and drivers reached Albert Park. The paddock was ready to start Melbourne Grand Prix. There was already done the green light for the Formula 1 practice sessions and.. Chase Carey appeared to the crowds of press to declare that Australian Grand Prix canceled.

Till the last moment no one knew whether to prepare to start, people were sitting on suitcases and F1 fans indignant, as someone had three days tickets. Formula 1 management chooses the people’s safety, and that was the right choice. The entire world turned into the nationwide lockdowns’ course of trying to slow the spread of the virus. Sametime no one could imagine, it was the start of the end. The cancellation of Australian GP triggered a delay of nearly four months!

For F1 Australia, it was two steps back to make ten steps forward in the future. And the future is coming. The Melbourne Grand Prix 2022 should be one of the most interesting races in the season, as there is no other way for Albert Park to catch up in the past. The Australian Grand Prix will take place over 58 laps at Melbourne’s 5.303-kilometer Circuit at Albert Park.

Upgraded track at Albert Park.

Albert Park circuit has always been a thrilling challenge for drivers. The stumbling block of the Australian circuit is that it is one of the tougher venues to overtake on. As for the results, the strategy of qualifying positions is crucial in the Australian Grand Prix. 

However, race organizers have made the task harder and Australian track has changed. Thus, there are minor changes to Turn 1, Turn 6, and the penultimate corner, where the track has been widened. Also, apex speed has been increased because of a radius change. The biggest change has been the removal of the chicane at Turn 9 and Turn 10. As a result, we got a much longer flat-out run to the high-speed chicane that was previously Turn 11 and Turn 12.

That means drivers will arrive at the upgraded Turn 11 (formerly Turn 13 at the end of the lap) at a faster speed. To ensure safety, they have created a larger braking zone.

We will see the Melbourne Grand Prix 2022 with lap times some five seconds quicker than in the past. As a result, overtaking will become more common in Albert Park. In terms of brand-new F1 cars 2022, it will be twice as exciting.  

Sebastian Vettel starts F1 Season at Melbourne Grand Prix.

Yes, this is not a joke, and there is no place for jokes in this case at all. Aston Martin’s driver Sebastian Vettel tested positive for covid-19 right before the start of the Bahrain GP 2022. Thus, Nico Hulkenberg replaced Sebastien in Aston Martin. It’s difficult to describe Hulkenberg’s debut at the wheel of Aston Martin F1 car 2022 as fantastic. Hulkenberg desperately deserved this chance, and, in fact, he deserved more than just one chance. 

We were hoping to see Sebastian Vettel in the second round – the most thorough challenge at the 2022 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, but alas. Sebastian Vettel didn’t join the F1 driver line-up because of Covid-19. Nico Hülkenberg got a second chance at Aston Martin. However, now it’s time to get back behind the wheel, because all F1 fans have missed the five-time F1 world champion so much!

Aston Martin stated last week that Vettel had fully healed and would be back in the car to start the Melbourne Grand Prix. But today Sebastian Vettel, after minimal pre-season testing, has a lot of catching up to do! The case is about brand new, sometimes difficult to drive, sometimes absolutely unpredictable Formula 1 2022 cars. Meanwhile, his opponents on the grid, including his teammate Lance Stroll, are having two races under their belts by now.

How will Sebastian Vettel start the 2022 F1 season? Will the absence of racing time impact on his results in Australia, or will the German driver perform like “Vini Vidi Vici” as they say? 

Another driver, Mick Schumacher, returns to racing. Haas F1 driver missed the race in Jeddah because of the massive crash he suffered in qualifying. The incredible safety systems ensured Schumacher was uninjured, but it was the right decision to withdraw him from the race prior to receiving the results of Schumacher’s precautionary scans.

Mercedes F1 team set to fight back at Melbourne Grand Prix.

Too bold? However, let’s dare to assume that Mercedes is ready to compete for positions at the Australian GP. 

The team’s last statements show their intentions are serious. It also reveals the fact that the races in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia failed. Mercedes has struggled for pace in the first two races of the season. Lewis Hamilton’s Q1 exit in Saudi Arabia highlighted the problem with the new car is real. No, it’s not that sanding bagging that people predicted. Both drivers found porpoising–or bouncing at high speed–a big difficulty with the car in that shape.

The Silver Arrows simply have no choice but to improve at Albert Park. As team principal Toto Wolff said, Mercedes’s current position is “unacceptable”. Trackside Engineering Director Andrew Shovlin also believes they have some positives Mercedes can take into the next few races. 

Mercedes has won all eight constructors championships since the hybrid era began in 2014. But with the team lacking performance, extending this record-breaking run to nine already seems to be a challenging assignment.

Today, both Mercedes-AMG drivers Lewis Hamilton and George Russell do not pretend to be record breakers; rather, they aim to close the gap. As an award-winning team, Silver Arrows has the potential to make it fast, but how fast? How much of a gap will Mercedes close on the Melbourne Grand Prix 2022? 

Charles Leclerc or Max Verstappen, Sergio Perez or Carlos Sainz? 

Another, however, is the multi intrigue, as Scuderia Ferrari is prancing with their leading Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz.  

At the Bahrain Grand Prix, Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz finished one-two for Scuderia Ferrari, rejoicing tifosi. Old lessons learned to Red Bull primary star Max Verstappen make him a difficult driver to overtake. Thus, the Saudi Arabian GP changed the dominance picture with Max Verstappen won the race at Jeddah. The genuine evidence is that Scuderia Ferrari has paced, the real pace, like a space rocket.

Another battle is between Red Bull driver Sergio Perez and Scuderia Ferrari driver Carlos Sainz. Regarding Ferrari’s contract extension, the Spaniard is closer to agreeing, but a lot depends on his performance. Thus, the Australian Grand Prix is another challenge test for Sainz. 

Perez has a positive reputation in the team, but overtaking Sainz would delight Red Bull fans and show Perez’s capabilities. At the Melbourne Grand Prix, the upgraded track layout means one more opportunity to turn the pedal to metal. By intuition, the results of qualifying sessions will also be significant. 

Melbourne Grand Prix 2022 schedule

FIAF1 Car Presentation11:30 – 12:30
Formula 1Team Pit Stop Practice10:05 – 10:25
Formula 1Teams Press Conference10:30 – 11:30
Formula 1Press Conference17:00 – 18:00
Formula 1Drivers’ Parade13:00 – 13:30
Formula 1National Anthem14:44 – 14:46
FORMULA 1GRAND PRIX (58 LAPS OR 120 MINS)15:00 – 17:00
Note: the time is local; Melbourne is 10 hours ahead of UTC; timetable may have the changes.

Besides Mercedes, McLaren drivers faced huge difficulties. For Lando Norris and Daniel Ricciardo, the start to the 2022 F1 season was a total failure. Therefore, we do not place high hopes on them, but we keep our fingers crossed.

Also, there are a couple of gentlemen to whom the press pays special attention. So Alfa Romeo, represented by a former Mercedes driver, Valtteri Bottas, has pace and may well fight for top places. Another surprise for fans is Kevin Magnussen. Although Kevin hasn’t driven in F1 over the past two years, neither can the current deals prevent him from getting behind the wheel of a Haas. And not just by driving, but also by showing the results as he finished in the top 5 in Bahrain! Everyone thought it was a fluke, but he almost repeated it in the Saudi Arabian GP, finishing in the top 10! Golden hands! 

There are already surprises planned for the Melbourne Grand Prix 2022 on April 10.