It was a fabulous weekend from beginning to end and gave us the sort of drama, intrigue and excitement that only F1 can deliver. It’s a sport of technology and of gladiatorial battles between drivers. We had everything this weekend.
The crowd at Interlagos were sensational. Lewis is a disciple of Ayrton Senna and that touched the crowd in Brazil. They have made him one of their own, a hero for them to cheer. It was inspiring to see them share their passion and it created an incredible atmosphere.
Mercedes had a stunning car this weekend and when you get someone of Lewis’ calibre with a car like that, he’s unstoppable. I’ve seen Lewis do that several times. And it’s impressive each time.
He had a moment with Max, which everyone will have a different perspective on. There were no dramatic risks. He dealt with the setbacks of an engine change and his disqualification from qualifying clinically and it was by far the performance of the weekend.
Racing drivers are brought up dealing with these challenges. From the beginning they get in a car, they know the way it works, they know the way the rules are. They must get used to the setbacks not all under their control. They can turn negatives into positives – and Lewis did just that this weekend.
Saturday’s F1 Sprint was, in my view, the best one of the three. It had plenty of action, with loads of battles – including Lewis carving his way through the field. It was a great Saturday afternoon of entertainment, an appetiser for the main course on Sunday.
We had a fabulous Friday, too, with a dramatic qualifying session. It can never be underestimated how much of an impact the Sprint has on a Friday.
With only one hour of practice, it creates some jeopardy heading into the rest of the weekend, as the teams are not as prepared as they can be.
We think the foundations are very strong for the Sprint and will be presenting more details of our plans for six events in 2022 in the coming weeks in discussions with the FIA and the teams.
There are things we need to tweak but Brazil showed the Sprint is a great addition to the weekend and has made Friday, Saturday and Sunday big moments that are exciting for all of us.
We’re seeing a titanic battle for this year’s two championships, and the race in Brazil was just another twist in an engrossing tale.
Mercedes had the edge this weekend, but it could swing back into Red Bull’s favour next time. It’s been fantastic. No one knows what will happen next.
We’ve got two new venues to visit in Qatar and Saudi Arabia, before heading to the finale in Abu Dhabi where the circuit has had a series of modifications. The stage is set.
Congratulations to Guanyu Zhou on securing a seat with Alfa Romeo in 2022. He’s shown potential in Formula 2 and remains in contention for the title with two races to go. It’s also great news that Alpine have promoted his title rival Oscar Piastri to the role of F1 reserve driver next season.
Like Zhou, he’s an exciting talent and one step closer to racing in F1. I’d like to thank Antonio Giovinazzi for his efforts over the last three years, flying the flag for Italy in F1 and I wish him all the best for the future.
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