2022 Miami Thoughts
THE BIG PICTURE: Everyone kept saying this is a long season. And already we are seeing a shift from Ferrari/Leclerc to Red Bull/Verstappen. Nineteen points seems puny now. It is indeed a long season.
EVENT: The most "memorable" part of the weekend was the complete social media meltdown over Martin Brundle's grid walk. But this event was always about the rich and famous. Not the average racing fans.
TRACK: Jeddah. Miami. This is the new age of street circuits which are in reality purpose built race tracks masquerading as a street circuit. Though that tight, narrow combination is the worst aspect of real street circuits.
QUALIFYING: Leclerc is surprised by his own pole position, Bottas is loving the scenery behind him, Mercedes losses their Friday speed, and Schumacher impresses over Magnussen.
RACE: The safety car helped spruce up the race to give us multiple mighty battles throughout the field. But even before that, the attack Verstappen put on Leclerc for the lead was memorable.
START: Verstappen spanks Sainz, Hamilton drops and Alonso rockets through the field due to both of them touching, and shockingly the whole field gets through clean.
VERSTAPPEN: To get only five laps in on Friday to learn a brand new track and then still be able to nearly grab pole if not for a mistake and dominate the race shows just how good Max is.
LECLERC: Charles is going to be begging his team for more speed.
SAINZ: Carlos completed more than one lap!
PEREZ: Held back by an underperforming engine.
FERRARI: Interesting season long strategy to save their upgrades till later in the year when others will be slowing their development as they reach their budget cap.
RUSSELL: Five for top fives now for George.
HAMILTON: Before everyone gets bent out of shape that Lewis was once again beaten by his teammate, keep in mind once again Hamilton was caught out by the timing of the safety car and Russell had better tires.
MERCEDES: This is just strange. Their outright lap times on Friday were better than Saturday when the track was much more rubbered in. A massive company wide head scratcher.
BOTTAS: Continues to get his giggles in as he outqualifies the Mercedes team. And almost beat them in the race until he goofed up.
ALBON: The brighter his red hair, the more points Alex collects. That correlation makes perfect sense to us...
NORRIS: Probably should have moved over a bit more to the left. But...
GASLY: ...if your car is damaged and it's quite obvious you can't continue, don't stay out for another lap. Sorry, Pierre, this one is on you.
SCHUMACHER: Mick, Mick, Mick. Crashing out the driver who has taken you under his wing to mentor you with a terrible move is the definition of awkward.
VETTEL: We want to be a fly on the wall when Sebastian talks to Mick.
DRIVERS: We don't get it, other than being obstinate for obstinance sake. After watching Romain Grosjean nearly get turned into a crispy critter two years ago, don't the drivers realize the dangers of fire and what happens if they have metal or non fire proof underwear? Seriously!
FIA: Having said that, we thought the FIA was all about safety. But instead they ignore the drivers' pleas to put a Tecpro barrier up after not one but two cars smack the cement wall in the same spot with great ferocity.
WORD OF THE WEEKEND: Celebrities.
STAT OF THE WEEKEND: 100 -- The percent of races Max Verstappen has won this year when he finishes.
HISTORICAL STAT OF THE WEEKEND: Sebring, of course, was the first Florida location to host the USGP, the very first one in 1959. It then went to Riverside in 1960. It was supposed to return to Sebring for 1961. However, money problems caused a very late decision to award the USGP to Watkins Glen, who said they were capable of hosting. The USGP stayed at The Glen for 20 years.
TWEET OF THE WEEKEND: Any tweet going apoplectic over Martin Brundle's grid walk.
QUOTE OF THE WEEKEND: Any question Martin Brundle asked during the grid walk.
QUOTE OF THE WEEKEND RUNNERUP: Most likely said by many of the attending celebrities, "There is a race going on here?"
SCHEDULE: Back to some tradition. Barcelona and then Monaco.
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