During the BBC pre-race show before the Belgian Grand Prix, commentator David Coulthard wittily ended a brief exchange withPirelli motorsport director Paul Hembery saying, “Congratulations on the win.”
After last weekend’s Brazilian Grand Prix, Ferrari team principal Maurizio Arrivabene spoke about his outlook for the 2016 Formula One season and his team’s fight with back-to-back champions Mercedes.
Some drivers arrive in Formula One seemingly predestined for success and almost immediately live up to that hype. In recent years, Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel fit that mold. Others clearly have the talent to be in F1, but their career arcs are more gradual climbs. Jenson Button, for example, took his first win in his seventh season and the world championship in his 10th.
Felipe Massa may have been disqualified from Sunday’s Brazilian Grand Prix, but Valtteri Bottas finished fifth and clinched third place in the Formula One Constructors’ Championship for the Williams team. That matches their finish in the overall standings last year—Williams’ best result since a second-place finish in 2003, during their BMW partnership.
Despite declining sponsorship revenue, the loss of the German Grand Prix (at least for this year) and falling television viewing figures, Formula One team budgets remain quite healthy.
Successful Brazilians pepper the history of Formula One racing: from world champions such as Emerson Fittipaldi, Ayrton Senna and Nelson Piquet to grand prix winners like Rubens Barrichello and Felipe Massa.
With the cancellation of the German Grand Prix, the 2015 Formula One calendar contained an unexpected three-week break in July, between the British and Hungarian Grands Prix. The actual summer break, though, with its mandatory two-week team factory shutdown, started after Hungary and wraps up next week when the teams arrive at Spa-Francorchamps for the Belgian Grand Prix.