Reporting the news since 1914

The Blue & Gold

Reporting the news since 1914

The Blue & Gold

Reporting the news since 1914

The Blue & Gold

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Why I follow Formula 1, and Why You Should, Too

Learn about the behind–the–scenes action of the up–and–coming popular motorsport
Photographer: Creative Commons 2.0

Formula One, more commonly known as F1, is a motorsport where there are ten teams, each with two drivers and one or more reserve drivers.

Formula 1 takes you all over the globe, from the United Kingdom and Brazil to Singapore. Some of the most famous tracks are Silverstone in England, Monza in Italy, Monte Carlo in Monaco, and Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium.

Up front, you see high-speed races with drivers going as fast as 200 mph. Behind the scenes, you get all the drama from driver contracts, FIA penalties, the constructor’s championship, car launches, and much more.

I got into Formula 1 thanks to the Netflix show Drive to Survive. The show is a documentary series that follows the Formula 1 season. The show started in 2019, and season 6 is set to premiere on February 23, 2024.

The Formula 1 season starts around late February and goes to late November with a spring and summer break worked into the schedule. During the winter off-season, teams work on building new “liveries” for the upcoming season.

Formula 1 is one of the most interesting sports I have ever watched, and I think it gets overlooked because it is not a generic sport in the US. Formula 1 is so much more than racing. The drama that unfolds during the season and during the off season is so exciting to follow.

A typical Formula 1 weekend, excluding the Sprint Race weekends, consists of two one-hour practice sessions called Free Practice 1 and Free Practice 2. Then, on Saturday, there is one more hour-long practice called Free Practice 3.

Finally, there is a qualifying session in the afternoon. Sunday is the big race, and most races happen during the day, but there are a couple of night races.

For example, a very well-known driver, Lewis Hamilton, announced a couple of weeks ago that he will be leaving the Mercedes at the end of the 2024 season. Hamilton has been a part of the Mercedes team for over ten years, but he now plans to drive for Ferrari.

Another exciting factor of Formula 1 racing is the Sprint Races that happen throughout the season.

During the 2023 season, there were 6 Sprint races, and to qualify for each race the drivers competed in a Spring Shootout. A Sprint Race is a 100 km race that lasts around 30 minutes, and the top eight drivers score points.

The FIA Formula 1 World Championship had its first race in 1950, and it was hosted at the Silverstone track in the United Kingdom.

Since the start of Formula 1, there have been 58 drivers from the United States. Only two Americans, Mario Andretti and Phill Hill, have won the World Drivers’ Championship. There is currently a single American driver on the grid, Logan Sargent.

About the Contributor
Maggie Foster
Maggie Foster, Staff Writer
Maggie joined the newspaper staff during her junior year because of her love for writing and journalism. Maggie is a varsity football team manager and is a member of the Share the Journey club. Outside of school, Maggie is part of a Youth Arts council that works on planning events and camps for kids. She also volunteers as a camp counselor, spends time with friends, reads, travels, and loves watching TV. In the future, Maggie hopes to become a formula one journalist.