The last weekend that featured F1 cars on any race-track was the last one in July. The race which took place in Hungary was not only won by Lewis Hamilton but marked the end of the first half of the 2018 F1 season.
To an extent, there’s been a month’s break between that race and the first race of the second half of the year, the Belgian Grand Prix. This long break could mean that events in Belgium this weekend could go either way, with some of the players yet to hit top form.
That being said, let’s take a look at some of the names that are strong contenders to win the first race of the second half of the season.
Hamilton could be said to have started his season slowly. Although he managed a podium finish in two of his first three races this season, he failed to win any until the Azerbaijan Grand Prix came along.
Since that win, the British driver has added four more race wins, with most of those wins coming in different European countries, with the latest being the Hungarian GP win.
The first three races that Hamilton failed to win were races “outside Europe.” Since the European F1 season kicked off, Lewis Hamilton has managed at least a podium finish. But when the Canadian GP appeared in between, Lewis Hamilton finished the race fifth.
So will he be good enough to win this race and finish above Sebastian Vettel?
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The German is second on the drivers’ standings with 189 points. There’s a good 24-point gap between him and the top, occupied by Hamilton. And if Vettel has any hope of winning the title this year, he has to start the second half with a win.
Vettel has only won four races – out of the 12 that we’ve seen this season. That’s one short of Hamilton’s five race wins. This second half is literally a season in which Vettel will be chasing Hamilton.
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- Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen
Both drivers appear as one on the list because apart from being part of the chasing pack, they’re the only other drivers who have won at least a race this season. Ricciardo has managed two race wins while Verstappen got one for himself.
Despite these wins, both drivers are currently 5th and 6th on the standings. Obviously breaking the Hamilton-Vettel duopoly will require more race wins.
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- Kimi Raikkonen and Valtteri Bottas
Asides both drivers hailing from Finland, both drivers are the closest to Hamilton and Vettel on the standings. Kimi has 146 points already while Valtteri has 132. Winning the title may be a long shot for these two. But you can’t completely rule them out of the running for at least one race win before the end of the season.
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Who will be the fastest in Belgium this weekend? Leave us a comment and share your thoughts with us.