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2023 Azerbaijan Thoughts

THE BIG PICTURE: The new format sure made for a hectic weekend, even for fans. There was no rest for the weary. We liked it, but we admit the jury is still out.

EVENT: The marketing concept behind being awarded a sprint format is to reward the successful venues to help them attract even more fans on Saturday and Sunday and/or help a venue to build a crowd. Neither of which have ever been the case with Baku, with or without a sprint format.

TRACK: The Baku track used to produce some thrilling races, but as time has gone by, they have become more and more boring. Even with new rules to prevent just that.

QUALIFYING: Three Baku poles in a row for Leclerc, a solid effort by Tsunoda, Mercedes is disappointing magnified by inadvertently giving a competitor a Q2 slipstream, and Sargeant makes it to Q2, and Q1 takes nearly as long as the usual overall qualifying proceedings.

SPRINT SHOOTOUT: Once again, Lecerc grabs a pole despite crashing, Sargeant ends his day, and McLaren messes up which driver they should have concentrated on.

SPRINT: A preview of the main event in abbreviated format.

SPRINT START: Surprisingly clean, Leclerc sails away, and Russell muscles his way past Verstappen.

RACE: We've seen this street circuit script before. Ferrari gets pole, Red Bull easily passes them within two laps, Perez eventually gets the lead and holds on. Rinse, lather, repeat.

START: Extremely clean upfront as Leclerc maintains his spot, Stroll and Russell both jump two spots, Magnussen rear ends Bottas, and there's a bit of bumping in the second turn.

PEREZ: There is no truth to the rumor that Sergio, his family, and the entire country of Mexico are lobbying Liberty Media to create an all street circuit schedule. We think...

VERSTAPPEN: Max went from a petulant whining sore loser to a calm matter of fact "oh, well" loser in just 24 hours.

RED BULL: Thank goodness they will take the same tact as Mercedes did during their domination -- let their drivers race. Looking forward to some sort of championship battle this year.

LECLERC: At least Charles got a podium this time.

SAINZ: Once again, second amongst the Spaniards.

FERRARI: Same old, same old -- great qualifying speed with no race speed.

ALONSO: The Aston Martin wasn't supposed to be all that quick at Baku. Yet, Fernando was still able to get fourth place, beating a Ferrari and both Mercedes. He's going to win a race this year. Mark it down.

HAMILTON: Fairly sanguine after the race.

RUSSELL: It wasn't on purpose, but he sure got under Verstappen's skin. And George won't back down, so this could be fun to watch.

NORRIS: The topsy-turvy results of Lando in F1.

PIASTRI: A fine run, especially considering he was ill all weekend.

TSUNODA: Good weekend? Bad weekend? Tough call, but when it was right, Yuki had speed.

ALPINE: Arguably, they brought the most upgrades to Baku. Not arguably, they had the least number of opportunities to try it out. Just a wretched, wretched weekend.

GASLY: Is it possible for Pierre to have a worst weekend?

OCON: You know it's a terrible weekend when you have to try a Hail Mary strategy. And then nearly bowl over photographers in the pit lane.

SARGEANT: Rookies make mistakes. We get that. But his propensity to crash in the junior series is carrying over to the major series.

DE VRIES: Is Nyck's ride in danger?

FIA: Everyone is focusing on the fact that all should have known Ocon had to pit on the last lap. Forget that. Anyone could have to come into the pits on the last lap in any race for any reason. Allowing people on pit lane for that last lap has always been asinine. It doesn't take a near tragedy to have known that. Oh, wait, we're talking about the FIA...

F2: Seventeen-year-old Brit Oliver Bearman won the Sprint (after going from fifth to first in the last three laps on a restart, thanks to avoiding a massive pileup in front of him) and the Feature from pole.

WORD OF THE WEEKEND: Street King.

STAT OF THE WEEKEND: 5 -- A lot is being made of Perez only being six points behind Verstappen after four races. But last year after four races, Perez trailed his teammate by just five points. And look how well that turned out for Sergio...

TWEET OF THE WEEKEND: From @RobLMyers concerning the Stewards report on the last lap pit lane fiasco, "We’ve had a very stern word with ourselves and agreed that we need to do better in future."

QUOTE OF THE WEEKEND: Sergio Perez on his chances to win the championship this year, "With three kids at home I wouldn’t be travelling around the world if I didn’t think I could be world champion."

QUOTE OF THE WEEKEND RUNNERUP: Damon Hill ripping into Max Verstappen after the Sprint, "The default mindset of someone like Max is that they're always right. Same with Michael, same with Ayrton. It is basically they have to be the guys who don't make mistakes, other people make mistakes."

SCHEDULE: Now the races come rapid fire -- five in six weeks. Miami, with their fake (but real this year?) lagoon is up next.

Copyright © 2023 by Deep Throttle. All Rights Reserved.



RACE RESULTS
  Driver Laps
1. Perez 51
2. Verstappen 51
3. Leclerc 51
4. Alonso 51
5. Sainz 51
6. Hamilton 51
7. Stroll 51
8. Russell 51
9. Norris 51
10. Tsunoda 51
11. Piastri(R) 51
12. Albon 51
13. Magnussen 51
14. Gasly 51
15. Ocon 51
16. Sargeant(R) 51
17. Hulkenberg 50
18. Bottas 50
NC Zhou 36
NC De Vries(R) 9

Time of Race
1:32:42.436

Margin of Victory
2.137 secs.

Safety Car
1 for 3 laps

Lead Changes
2 among 3 drivers

Lap Leaders
Sergio Perez, Max Verstappen, Charles Leclerc

Fastest Race Lap
George Russell

Pole Position
Charles Leclerc

CURRENT STANDINGS
  Driver Pts.
1. Verstappen 93
2. Perez 87
3. Alonso 60
4. Hamilton 48
5. Sainz 34
6. Leclerc 28
  Russell 28
8. Stroll 27
9. Norris 10
10. Hulkenberg 6
11. Piastri(R) 4
  Bottas 4
  Ocon 4
  Gasly 4
15. Zhou 2
  Tsunoda 2
17. Magnussen 1
  Albon 1

  Team Pts.
1. Red Bull 180
2. Aston Martin 87
3. Mercedes 76
4. Ferrari 62
5. McLaren 14
6. Alpine 8
7. Haas 7
8. Alfa Romeo 6
9. AlphaTauri 2
10. Williams 1
 
 

2023 Thoughts
Bahrain Saudi Arabia Australia Azerbaijan
Miami Emilia Romagna Monaco Spain
Canada Austria Great Britain Hungary
Belgium Holland Italy Singapore
Japan Qatar United States Mexico City
Sao Paulo Las Vegas Abu Dhabi

2022 Thoughts
Bahrain Saudi Arabia Australia Emilia Romagna
Miami Spain Monaco Azerbaijan
Canada Great Britain Austria France
Hungary Belgium Holland Italy
Singapore Japan United States
Mexico City Sao Paulo Abu Dhabi

2021 Thoughts
Bahrain Emilia Romagna Portugal Spain Monaco
Azerbaijan France Steiermark Austria Great Britain
Hungary Belgium Holland Italy
Russia Turkey United States Mexico City
Sao Paulo Qatar Saudi Arabia Abu Dhabi

2020 Thoughts
Austria Steiermark Hungary Great Britain Anniversary
Spain Belgium Italy Tuscany
Russia Eifel Portugal Emilia Romagna
Turkey Bahrain Sakhir Abu Dhabi

2019 Thoughts
Australia Bahrain China Azerbaijan Spain
Monaco Canada France Austria
Great Britain Germany Hungary Belgium
Italy Singapore Russia Japan
Mexico United States Brazil Abu Dhabi

2018 Thoughts
Australia Bahrain China Azerbaijan Spain
Monaco Canada France Austria
Great Britain Germany Hungary Belgium
Italy Singapore Russia Japan
United States Mexico Brazil Abu Dhabi

2017 Thoughts
Australia China Bahrain Russia
Spain Monaco Canada Azerbaijan
Austria Great Britain Hungary Belgium
Italy Singapore Malaysia Japan
United States Mexico Brazil Abu Dhabi

2016 Thoughts
Australia Bahrain China Russia Spain
Monaco Canada Europe Austria
Great Britain Hungary Germany Belgium
Italy Singapore Malaysia Japan
United States Mexico Brazil Abu Dhabi

2015 Thoughts
Australia Malaysia China Bahrain
Spain Monaco Canada Austria
Great Britain Hungary Belgium Italy
Singapore Japan Russia United States
Mexico Brazil Abu Dhabi

2014 Thoughts
Australia Malaysia Bahrain China
Spain Monaco Canada Austria
Great Britain Germany Hungary Belgium
Italy Singapore Japan Russia
United States Brazil Abu Dhabi

2013 Thoughts
Australia Malaysia China Bahrain
Spain Monaco Canada Great Britain
Germany Hungary Belgium Italy
Singapore South Korea Japan India
Abu Dhabi United States Brazil

2012 Thoughts
Australia Malaysia China Bahrain
Spain Monaco Canada Europe
Great Britain Germany Hungary Belgium
Italy Singapore Japan South Korea
India Abu Dhabi United States Brazil

2011 Thoughts
Australia Malaysia China Turkey
Spain Monaco Canada Europe
Great Britain Germany Hungary Belgium
Italy Singapore Japan South Korea
India Abu Dhabi Brazil

2010 Thoughts
Bahrain Australia Malaysia China
Spain Monaco Turkey Canada
Europe Great Britain Germany Hungary
Belgium Italy Singapore Japan
South Korea Brazil Abu Dhabi

2009 Thoughts
Australia Malaysia China Bahrain
Spain Monaco Turkey Great Britain
Germany Hungary Europe
Belgium Italy Singapore
Japan Brazil Abu Dhabi


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