Preview of the 2014 F1 Championship Season

The 2014 season of Formula One is about to begin with different rules and regulations and some great milestones that could be broken. FIA has shown more concern towards drivers and therefore come up with regulation that will ensure better safety for the drivers.

The drastic changes in rules and regulations

Firstly the engine has undergone a drastic change with world and industry moving towards smaller engines, the cars in F1 will also come with smaller 1.6 litre V6 turbocharged “powertrains” instead of 2.4 litre V8 “engines”. With this new power train being fitted in the cars, the output will be increased to around 840 bhp from 780 bhp last year.

Next are the changes in the gearbox rules wherein now each driver will have to use only one gearbox for at least 6 continuous races and failure to do so will attract penalty. Also teams can now use eight gears (last year it was seven) but once selected, can’t be changed for entire season.

On one side where we see that the output has increased, will it really result in faster cars is doubtful as the weights of the cars have also been increased to 691 kg from 642 kg last year. There is a limit of 100 kg of fuel and a 100kg/ph flow rate now which is almost half of what was allowed previous year and this would require teams to make some new strategies for the season.

In terms of external features of the car, there will be smaller nose in the front with ground clearance of no more than 185 mm which is significantly lower as compared to 550 mm allowed in 2012 and a width of 1800 mm compared to 1650 mm earlier. The car will also feature a narrower rear wing resulting in lower downforce by around 15 percent and resulting in higher fuel efficiency and aero dynamism of the car. These changes have been done mainly taking into consideration the safety of the drivers.

About the 2014 F1 Season

This season is the 65th season of the Formula One World Championship with eleven teams and twenty two drivers participating. There will be in all 19 races that will take place during the year starting from Australian Grand Prix on March 16 and last race at Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on November 23. This season will evidence some changes in the calendar as well wherein the Russian Grand Prix will be held for the first time in a century at the Sochi International Street Circuit and we would also witness revival of Austrian Grand Prix, with race at the Red Bull Ring in Spielberg.

The Indian Grand Prix will be discontinued for this year (on account of elections primarily) before returning to the schedule next year while there will be no race that will take place at the Korean Grand Prix this year.

The 2014 F1 Calendar will be as follows:

Round

Date

Grand Prix

Circuit

1

16-Mar

Australian Grand Prix

Melbourne Grand Prix Circuit, Melbourne

2

30-Mar

Malaysian Grand Prix

Sepang International Circuit, Kuala Lumpur

3

06-Apr

Bahrain Grand Prix

Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir

4

20-Apr

Chinese Grand Prix

Shanghai International Circuit, Shanghai

5

11-May

Spanish Grand Prix

Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, Barcelona

6

25-May

Monaco Grand Prix

Circuit de Monaco, Monte Carlo

7

08-Jun

Canadian Grand Prix

Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, Montreal

8

22-Jun

Austrian Grand Prix

Red Bull Ring, Spielberg

9

06-Jul

British Grand Prix

Silverstone Circuit, Silverstone

10

20-Jul

German Grand Prix

Hockenheimring, Hockenheim

11

27-Jul

Hungarian Grand Prix

Hungaroring, Budapest

12

24-Aug

Belgian Grand Prix

Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps, Francorchamps

13

07-Sep

Italian Grand Prix

Autodromo Nazionale Monza, Monza

14

21-Sep

Singapore Grand Prix

Marina Bay Street Circuit, Marina Bay

15

05-Oct

Japanese Grand Prix

Suzuka Circuit, Suzuka

16

12-Oct

Russian Grand Prix

Sochi International Street Circuit, Adlersky City

17

02-Nov

United States Grand Prix

Circuit of the Americas, Austin

18

09-Nov

Brazilian Grand Prix

Autódromo José Carlos Pace, São Paulo

19

23-Nov

Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi

Teams and Drivers

Sebastian Vettel from Red Bull will start the season as the defending Drivers’ Champion (team being defending Constructors’ Champions) as he won the last season which was his fourth consecutive title. He would be looking forward to equal the record of all-time great Michael Schumacher who has won five titles in his career. The other driver of Red Bull is Daniel Ricciardo and the team would be looking forward to its young driver to deliver when required.

The biggest change we can say of the season is the return of 2007 World Champion Kimi Räikkönen to Ferrari, the team he raced for from 2007 to 2009 after being with Lotus F1 till last year. The other driver of the Ferrari is another world champion Fernando Alonso and the notable part of this partnership is that this would be the first time that Ferrari has contested a season with two World Drivers’ Champions in the team. So we can expect Ferrari to give a tough fight to Red Bull and it would be interesting to see which racer gets which opportunities.

Another notable change this year is retirement of Mark Webber from Red Bull after twelve seasons as he moves on to participate in FIA World Endurance Championship and will be driving for Porsche AG.

The list of teams and their drivers is as per below:

Team

Constructor

Drivers

Caterham F1 Team

Caterham–Renault

Marcus Ericsson

Kamui Kobayashi

Scuderia Ferrari

Ferrari

Kimi Räikkönen

Fernando Alonso

Sahara Force India F1 Team

Force India–Mercedes

Sergio Pérez

Nico Hülkenberg

Lotus F1 Team

Lotus–Renault

Romain Grosjean

Pastor Maldonado

Marussia F1 Team

Marussia–Ferrari

Max Chilton

Jules Bianchi

McLaren Mercedes

McLaren–Mercedes

Kevin Magnussen

Jenson Button

Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team

Mercedes

Nico Rosberg

Lewis Hamilton

Infiniti Red Bull Racing

Red Bull–Renault

Sebastian Vettel

Daniel Ricciardo

Sauber F1 Team

Sauber–Ferrari

Esteban Gutiérrez

Adrian Sutil

Scuderia Toro Rosso

Toro Rosso–Renault

Jean-Éric Vergne

Daniil Kvyat

Williams F1 Team

Williams–Mercedes

Felipe Massa

Valtteri Bottas

Our predictions of the 2014 F1 Championship

Surely this season is going to be a terrific season as we already said with so many changes to the cars and rules for drivers, etc. The strategies of the teams will be worth watching and we can also expect records to be broken and experience things never seen before.

Talking about teams, tough fight between Red Bull, Mercedes and Ferrari with champions’ part of their lineup and it will be great to see which team finally manages to win though our favorite would be Mercedes for this season as well.

For drivers, clearly Sebastian Vettel is the favorite for now and there is nothing which looks like stopping him from winning his fifth title of his career. However Kimi Räikkönen and Alonso along with Lewis Hamilton are not going to give up and there is going to be a steaming competition that we can experience.

Winners of the season

Constructors Championship:

Mercedes – 1.91

Red Bull – 4.33

Ferrari – 4.50

Drivers Championship:

Lewis Hamilton – 3.50

Sebastian Vettel – 4.00

Fernando Alonso – 6.50

(Odds found at William Hill)