2019 Season Preview/Predictions & Australian GP | ApexOnlineRacing.com

2019 Season Preview/Predictions & Australian GP


Who will win the race?

  • Hamilton

    Votes: 3 23.1%
  • Vettel

    Votes: 8 61.5%
  • Verstappen

    Votes: 1 7.7%
  • Bottas

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • LeClerc

    Votes: 1 7.7%
  • Gasly

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Other

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    13
  • Poll closed .

Wobbuffet

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May 20, 2016
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I was going to just create this thread and ask what people are predicting for the upcoming season, but with the Australian GP just over a week away I feel its best just to merge the topics.
(Though just to clarify this will be the only race thread I create this season as its someone elses turn this year.:LOL:)

Anyway as for the GP, at the moment only the driver tyre selection preview is available:


Pretty similar across the board from the suspected top 3 teams as for Renault they must be feeling confident about there tyre wear - just the 10 sets of C4 'softs' interesting.
 
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Wobbuffet

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May 20, 2016
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Looking ahead to the season well its a big year for a few drivers, mainly for Seb & Bottas - for different reasons.

Bottas - Well he had a great start to last season and was arguably better then Hamilton over the first 4 races but he didn't get the results his driving deserved, he missed out on winning in China because of the SC and then he suffered the late puncture at Baku which gave the win to Hamilton, after that he was never the same driver for pretty much the rest of season, I think mentally he was gone.

And the pressure is really on him this season, with Wolff pretty much saying Ocon is definitely getting a drive next season with Mercedes the likely planned destination by Wolff, I think realistically if Bottas wants to keep his Merc seat for next season and beyond then he's going to have to win the championship this season, I know some people on here may think that would be and extremely unfair target, but that's the only way Wolff or Merc would be forced to keep Bottas.
I think even if Bottas finished ahead of Hamilton in the championship this season but didn't win it depending on the circumstances that might not be enough either and on the flipside that's the only other scenario that would give Bottas some chance of keeping his seat.

Seb - Its a massive season for Seb as well not only is he probably expected by Ferrari to bring home a WDC, he's got a young very talented teammate and I make no bones about it I fully expect Leclerc to give Seb a good run for his money this season, and any Seb fan that thinks he's going to have it easy is going to be in for shock I think.
The reason why I think that is simple - theres very little pressure on Leclerc and expectation to a degree, its the same sort of scenario Seb faced back in 2014 when Ricciardo became his teammate.

Leclerc has pretty much nothing to lose this season (providing he doesn't crash the car multiple times in races), if he's outqualified and finishes behind Seb regularly, then people will say its expected (depending on the margins not being to big), but if he's outqualifying Seb on occasions and finishing close behind Seb and ahead of him in some races, then people will be making a lot of noise about it.

However I still have faith that Seb can see off Leclerc providing he drives at his best (like last year Seb saw off a resurgent Raikkonen who probably drove at his best level in the last 5 years) but if he doesn't and is ends up behind Leclerc - depending on the circumstances, it won't be just his fans asking questions it'll be the Ferrari board as well - wondering why there paying him so handsomely.
 

Steve Jackson

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Vettel has been paid to deliver, the car is headed in the right direction. To be fair, he cracked and blew it last season and you can't afford that against Hamilton. It's very, very close. Actually I think Leclerc will be the fly in the ointment this season. He will be snapping away at points and positions. Ferrari will call team orders race one.
 

Wobbuffet

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Vettel has been paid to deliver, the car is headed in the right direction. To be fair, he cracked and blew it last season and you can't afford that against Hamilton. It's very, very close. Actually I think Leclerc will be the fly in the ointment this season. He will be snapping away at points and positions. Ferrari will call team orders race one.
I can understand why fans in general feel that Seb threw it away last season, but personally I don't think its as simple as people make out.
Of course Seb should have probably taken it to the last race but I don't think or believe it would be enough to turn around a 88pt difference, France & Germany no argument from me that's a total of around a 40 point swing. (assuming Seb win Hamilton 2nd at Germany, & Seb finishing 2nd/3rd France instead of 5th)

As for the spin from contacts at Italy & Japan those were 50/50, for me Seb had every right to try defend from Hamilton (Italy) & try pass Mad Max (Japan) but for some strange reason it sent Seb spinning despite being on the inside.
With Baku again I had no problem with Seb going for it on the restart after SC, fans pointed that out as an error/mistake yet what's forgotten is, if he actually pulled that move off then Seb would have got the puncture and dnf not Bottas.
You may say he shouldn't have tried to pass Bottas in the first place, but Seb may not have got another chance so he had to go for it, plus theres no way anybody could have known there was a small bit of debris waiting on the normal racing line on the start/finish straight, waiting for the leader to drive over it.

Either way even if Seb didn't have those spins and somehow got the win at Baku, the last 2 races of the season would have made the difference in the end, for me its why Hamilton would have still won last years championship regardless - Seb didn't lose it, Hamilton was always going to win it based on what we know now.

As for Ferrari team orders, I think lets at least wait and see what happens personally I'd be surprised if they did it from the first race, anyway last year Merc were the ones to make Bottas play the support role for Hamilton at the halfway point (basically Silverstone onwards) Ferrari were still playing it fair between Seb & Raikkonen even at Italy.
 

Wobbuffet

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May 20, 2016
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So looking like setting the fastest lap in a race this season will be worth one point to any of the top 10 drivers:
https://www.skysports.com/f1/news/12433/11658696/f1-2019-point-for-fastest-lap-set-to-be-introduced-at-australian-gp

Not a fan of this idea to be honest to much of a gimmick and besides FL's should not potentially make the difference in a championship.
Anyway if this gets the go ahead all that will/should happen (providing the teams are smart enough & theres a similar gap between the top 3 teams and the best of the rest like last year) is the driver in 6th will pit a couple laps from the end bolt on a set of the fastest tyres and take the FL.
 

dejw_d

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So looking like setting the fastest lap in a race this season will be worth one point to any of the top 10 drivers:
https://www.skysports.com/f1/news/12433/11658696/f1-2019-point-for-fastest-lap-set-to-be-introduced-at-australian-gp

Not a fan of this idea to be honest to much of a gimmick and besides FL's should not potentially make the difference in a championship.
Anyway if this gets the go ahead all that will/should happen (providing the teams are smart enough & theres a similar gap between the top 3 teams and the best of the rest like last year) is the driver in 6th will pit a couple laps from the end bolt on a set of the fastest tyres and take the FL.
Yep, automatic 21 points for Bottas right there.
 

Wobbuffet

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May 20, 2016
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Obviously now a very sad GP ahead following the death of Charlie Whiting, expecting there'll be a minute silence before the race for a man who was very much a part of the furniture of F1, I don't envy the person who has to fill his shoes in the future.

So the new season starts tomorrow and we'll finally get some answers as to the competitiveness of the teams, one of the best quotes I've seen this week has to be from Bottas who has said “When I came back I decided that I’m going to beat everyone this year".
:LOL:


To be fair to him at least he's coming out fighting, I wonder if he's copying Rosberg mindset back in 2016, because that's the level you have to go to if your going to have a chance of beating Hamilton as a teammate over a season.

Anyway my prediction for the season realistically expecting a 3 team fight at the front, Seb to have to deal with not just Hamilton & Mad Max but Leclerc as well if he wants to win the championship.

Renault to win best of the rest and Williams last.
 

Wobbuffet

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May 20, 2016
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Quite surprised to see the FP2 results when I looked yesterday, I'm sure it'll be closer in qualy well I at least hope it is but If Merc have anything like an advantage like that, then I think we can safely rule out Hamiltons quote during testing of 'Ferrari being half a second quicker'.

But the only think that looks a cast iron certainty right now is Williams are well and truly in trouble, if they are over a second back from the next team after qualy then its going to be a looooooooooonnnnnnnnng season for them.
 

Wobbuffet

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That gap 'sigh', well just have to hope that this is an anomaly like last season as the gap was pretty much the same, but looks like a certain 1-2 for Merc tomorrow though at least Bottas actually looks like he can keep Hamilton honest.
 

xMinxG

F1 Senna Equivalent
Apr 1, 2016
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Anyone else feel a Hakkinen vibe to Bottas today?
Its like he's transformed or something this year after last year.
Also, Max was a second behind Hamilton....
3 way fight this time around?

Also Fs to Riccardos career. Renault look backwards.

I'm saying this all with one race done...I'm stupid.
 

Wobbuffet

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May 20, 2016
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Well I used this before and I think I'll use it again after the GP I witnessed, I imagine the post race inquest at Ferrari/Marinello will go something like this, just substitute: Bassett for Binotto, Mexicans for Mercedes, Ramirez for Bottas, player of the tournament for driver of the day and England for Ferrari.

As for the race itself I almost literally couldn't believe what I was watching (I'll talk about Ferrari later) very rarely does Hamilton get beat legitimately beaten by his teammate, but margin of victory Bottas had over Hamilton yesterday was borderline outrageous, I've can't honestly remember the last time seeing a teammate of his do that to him.

Now I know it came out afterwards that Hamilton had floor damage which may explain this gap and I suspect it happened after the his pitstop, as Hamilton did seem to have a slow start to his medium stint but I think even before that Bottas was driving at a better level then him as he was pulling out a gap over Hamilton.

I know he said 'I decided that I'm going beat everyone this year' and I think pretty much everyone had a good laugh reading that and thought 'yeah yeah, of course you are'. (as evidenced by no one voting for him in the poll)

I imagine Ocon thought something like that, and while the TV cameras saw him and Wolff smiling as the race ended, I'm sure underneath Ocon was in turmoil he probably thought as friday practice began 'I just have to wait for now - next year that'll be my seat'. (while thinking that with a smile as big as a cheshire cat)

But you can only assume now once he gets back home he'll get a picture of Bottas standing next to the Merc, put it on the back of his bedroom door and throw darts at it and pray that this was a one off, and if Bottas maintains this form the next step Ocon will take will be a voodoo doll of Bottas I imagine.:ROFLMAO:

Anyway after this race for me I'm definitely taking Bottas seriously now, that performance was a statement by him, but his biggest challenge now is to keep to that standard/level, as that is what it'll take if you want to beat/best Hamilton over the season.

As for Ferrari well yes its only one race but to basically be on average 1 second a lap slower then Merc is terrible, I'm not panicking from a Seb perspective (yet) but I find it hard to believe things will change that drastically in Ferrari's favour from Bahrain onwards, if they are legitimately back in the hunt at Bahrain great but if Ferrari aren't within few tenths of Merc & RB then Ferrari & Seb can write this season off by Baku.

With Leclerc catching Seb, I think Seb would have defended quite hard against Leclerc if he had a go, so from a team perspective they probably did the sensible thing as its only 4th and 5th, though if they weren't going to give Leclerc the freedom to have a go then they should have told him to save a fair bit of fuel then pit him with 3/4 laps to go put on his freshest softs and told him to nab the FL for the bonus point, I didn't understand why they at least didn't try it.:unsure:

But either way a very poor start for Ferrari, as for RB they were clearly the 2nd quickest team and I weren't too surprised when Mad Max got by Seb it was good performance by him, though Gasly not only had the ignominy of finishing outside the points but after being passed by Kvyat on the hard tyre, he couldn't get back by him with the soft tyre.o_O

As for the best of the rest battle Haas won it, but once again there's a big gap from the top 3 to the rest and then a chasm to Williams.

Oh yeah I will add hearing over the radio Hamilton, Mad Max & Bottas desperately trying to get the fastest lap point in the final laps gave me a good laugh, its just 1 point guys relax.:ROFLMAO:
 
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iJokeri22

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As for the race itself I almost literally couldn't believe what I was watching (I'll talk about Ferrari later) very rarely does Hamilton get beat legitimately beaten by his teammate, but margin of victory Bottas had over Hamilton yesterday was borderline outrageous, I've can't honestly remember the last time seeing a teammate of his do that to him.
Singapore 2016 would be the last time that happen in a normal race. :)
Russia 2017 as well now I think about it.
 
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