The 2018 Formula 1 (F1) season is just a few months away. With all the seats now formally taken, let’s review who’s driving for which team this year.
Mercedes-AMG F1 is entering the 2018 season with a bit of a dilemma as both of their driver’s contracts expire this year. Defending champion Lewis Hamilton, who hopes to claim his fifth title this year, is expected to re-sign with the team.
Driving alongside Hamilton will be his teammate Valtteri Bottas. The Finn managed to compete consistently with his teammate and their rivals throughout the season to finish third overall. Despite that success, there are rumors that he could be replaced come the 2019 season.
Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen will again spearhead Ferrari’s conquest of reclaiming its former glory this year. Vettel, who signed a three-year contract extension in 2017, aims to complete the mission this time around after coming a few points short of winning the title in the previous season.
Raikkonen, on the other hand, has been given the gauntlet. If the Finn fails to impress, the Scuderia might have to start looking for a hungrier driver down the grid AKA Charles Leclerc or Daniil Kvyat.
Aston Martin Red Bull Racing
Red Bull Racing’s 2017 season was plagued with mechanical failures and bad luck (if you believe in it). With their new title sponsor Aston Martin, the duo of Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen look to turn things around and challenge the front row this season.
Force India Mercedes
Esteban Ocon and Sergio Perez were good drivers last year, well, when they weren’t crashing into each other. Even with these incidents, the boys in pink still managed to snag fourth in the constructors championship for the second time in a row. Will they be able to improve this season?
After much anticipation, the line-up for Williams Mercedes has been finally confirmed. Second year driver Lance Stroll will be race alongside the Russian Sergey Sirotkin, who served as test driver for Renault last year. Stroll snagged a career-high 3rd place finish at Azerbaijan and finished twelfth in the standings. Meanwhile, Sirotkin had success in GP2 (now known as Formula 2) after claiming third place overall for RAPAX and ART Grand Prix in consecutive seasons.
Renault was able to beat their rivals Toro Rosso last year thanks to a complicated engine-driver deal between the 2. This saw Carlos Sainz move to Renault late in the season, replacing the enigmatic Jolyon Palmer. He will be driving in the company of the ever consistent Nico Hulkenburg.
Toro Rosso made big changes in the latter stages of 2017 season. This saw Daniil Kvyat getting the boot and Sainz moving to Renault. Currently, the team has Pierre Gasly and Brendon Hartley competing for them for the whole year.
Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen will again suit up Haas F1. The American team cites continuity as the reason for retaining the duo. But with just 29 points scored for each of the past two years, will we see new drivers if they fail to score equal or more this year?
Fernando Alonso and Stoffel Vandoorne return with high hopes for McLaren after a horrific season with former engine supplier Honda. Will the new engine provided by Renault spark improved performance this season? If the new power unit achieves its potential, then this duo is a team to be reckoned with.
Alfa Romeo Sauber F1
Sauber chose to retain Marcus Ericsson despite not scoring a single point in 2017 over the talented Pascal Wehrlein. Ericsson will be accompanied by hot shot and 2017 FIA Formula 2 champion Charles Leclerc.