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Reviewing the FormulaNerds’ 2023 F1 season predictions

A year ago, I tasked our team of writers with taking some guesses as to what the upcoming F1 season might have in store. Let’s see how we did…

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It’s Christmas Day, and as is becoming tradition around here, it’s time to start turning our attention from the last F1 season to the year ahead.

The start of the 2023 Australian Grand Prix. (Image Credit: Peter Fox via Getty Images)

First, however, we’re going to take a little gander down memory lane to see just how woefully we did with predicting what might occur during the 2023 F1 season.

I’ll jump straight into it, and really, it’s only fair that I offer myself up first. There’s plenty to get through, so check out what he thought we’d have in store in full.


I’m not going to beat around the bush here. I did terribly. What an idiot.

If I’m being charitable (to myself), I’d give myself 0.5/5. I predicted:

  • Drivers’ Champion: Lewis Hamilton
  • Constructors’ Champion: Mercedes
  • Driver of the Year: Esteban Ocon
  • Biggest surprise: Lance Stroll
  • Hot take: Daniel Ricciardo will replace Sergio Perez before the end of the season

Okay, so maybe I could argue that Lance Stroll was surprisingly bad? I’ll take my half-point for predicting that Daniel Ricciardo would replace somebody before the end of the season. Spoiler: that hot take may or may not be rolling over to next season’s predictions.

I won’t even bother addressing the top two predictions because, well, why bother?

Esteban Ocon wasn’t the Driver of the Year – he didn’t even beat his teammate. The worst prediction, though, was that Stroll would at least somewhat take the fight to Alonso.

Tried to be punchy, but ended up punching myself in the face.


You know what? I don’t hate these predictions from Lena:

  • Drivers’ Champion: Max Verstappen
  • Constructors’ Champion: Mercedes
  • Driver of the Year: Lando Norris
  • Biggest surprise: Nyck de Vries
  • Hot take: Nico Hülkenberg will finally, and surprisingly, get his long-awaited podium

Verstappen walked the drivers’ crown and Norris was exceptional – certainly in the Driver of the Year conversation.

De Vries was a surprise. Not quite in the way Lena was expecting but getting axed 10 races into the F1 season was undeniably a shock.

And whilst Hülkenberg didn’t quite manage his long-sought-after podium, he did get awfully close in Australia, and he did outperform Kevin Magnussen.

I’m gonna give Lena 2/5, with half marks picked up for Norris and De Vries. 40% is a Third and therefore a pass at university. I’d be happy with that, to be honest.

James P

I’ve gotta hand it to James here. He went big with predicting a George Russell drivers’ title and therefore has had to go home. Yikes…

Skipping past another ill-advised Mercedes prediction (who knew they’d hold onto the ‘zeropod’ concept till Monaco?!), I’ve actually got a fair amount of time for James’s latter three selections:

  • Drivers’ Champion: George Russell
  • Constructors’ Champion: Mercedes
  • Driver of the Year: Lando Norris
  • Biggest surprise: Alpine
  • Hot take: Max Verstappen will be booed at most races and will become quite unpopular

You already know how I feel about the Norris pick, but crucially, the Alpine choice was based on disappointment rather than surpassing expectations. Ocon and Pierre Gasly didn’t develop tension between them, their F1 season was far too ‘meh’ for that, but predicting an underwhelming year for the French team has to be worth at least half a mark.

Verstappen was booed at some races and remained reasonably unpopular – but that’s only because he was so damn dominant. So, when taken in full, I’m giving James P 1.5/5 (he’s lucky to not lose points for the Russell pick).


From one person fortunate to not be penalised to another, Abby made my favourite incorrect prediction of the year: that Logan Sargeant would outperform Alex Albon. Crikey, that hasn’t aged well.

But truth be told, Abby didn’t actually do too badly:

  • Drivers’ Champion: Max Verstappen
  • Constructors’ Champion: Mercedes
  • Driver of the Year: Lando Norris
  • Biggest surprise: Logan Sargeant
  • Hot take: Oscar Piastri will crack under the pressure and won’t perform as well as expected

Mercedes as constructors’ champs and Norris as Driver of the Year are almost customary picks at this point, so Abby adds another half point to her score for Verstappen.

The Piastri hot take is unlucky. It’s a solid and fundamentally sound prediction – expectations were high. However, switch Sargeant and Piastri round and Abby would have scored higher than 1.5/5.


Like pretty much all of us, Nathan predicted that Mercedes and Ferrari would converge with Red Bull at the top of the order. That didn’t happen, but a couple of Nathan’s picks were pretty interesting:

  • Drivers’ Champion: Lewis Hamilton
  • Constructors’ Champion: Mercedes
  • Driver of the Year: Oscar Piastri
  • Biggest surprise: Sergio Perez & Carlos Sainz
  • Hot take: Aston Martin and Alpine’s pairings will get heated due to a lot of incidents between themselves

Like with Norris, I’m going to award half a point for predicting that Piastri would be Driver of the Year. He had a very strong rookie campaign, so I think that’s fair.

Another half mark for predicting that Perez would fall even further behind Verstappen. Can’t say the same for Sainz, unfortunately.

The points scoring stops there for Nathan, however, as his Hot take didn’t quite land. This was due to ambivalence at Alpine (tension was bubbling beneath the surface, though) and for the simple fact that the Aston Martins weren’t near enough on track to have incidents between themselves. 1/5.


What Morgan got right; she got right. Predicting a closer championship fight than in 2022 wasn’t a great start, but Morgan does get an early point on the board for picking Verstappen as the drivers’ champion:

  • Drivers’ Champion: Max Verstappen
  • Constructors’ Champion: Mercedes
  • Driver of the Year: Charles Leclerc
  • Biggest surprise: Williams
  • Hot take: Yuki Tsunoda will beat Nyck de Vries

Another Mercedes pick isn’t great and I don’t think we can quite say Leclerc was in the conversation for Driver of the Year, but I’ve gotta award a full point for the Williams selection at Biggest surprise.

Morgan predicted that Sargeant would struggle at first and that Williams would finish no lower than P8 in the constructors’ fight.

Turns out Sargeant would pretty much struggle throughout and Williams would finish the season one place better, in P7. So, for that, I think we have enough detail to give the full point.

I can’t say the Hot take is really all that hot. But, then again, hindsight changes things. De Vries did fail to meet expectations and he was beaten by Tsunoda, so that’s got to be another full point there. Morgan just pips Lena to take the lead on 2.5/5.

Can James M better that score in the final prediction review of the piece?

James M

If all else failed, at least James managed to correctly guess the 2023 F1 Constructors’ Champions. The only person to go two for two to open proceedings, the final three categories were key:

  • Drivers’ Champion: Max Verstappen
  • Constructors’ Champion: Red Bull
  • Driver of the Year: Charles Leclerc
  • Biggest surprise: Oscar Piastri
  • Hot take: Fernando Alonso will be outscored by Lance Stroll, albeit with a traditional slice of poor luck as his curse follows him to Aston Martin

I’ve already addressed the Leclerc thing above, but I do feel how Piastri was able to settle into F1 and adapt to his surroundings was a surprise. After the Alpine saga, it was almost a lose-lose situation for him, and he still surpassed expectations. So for that, I’ve got to award a title-clinching third point to James.

His Hot take was abysmal – he can join me in walking back on ill-advising Stroll-based predictions, but it is worth reiterating how he ended his predictions last year:

“Behind the big three, McLaren will reclaim their ‘best of the rest’ tag from Alpine. Alfa Romeo and Haas will fall backwards with Williams moving up at least one position in the Constructors’ Championship.”

If I were to award bonus points, it’s safe to say James would get one for that gem. But I’m not, so he’ll have to get over it – which I’m sure he will with a strong 3/5.

I, on the other hand, will gladly take my wooden spoon. At least I’ll have something to stir up some 2024 F1 season predictions with.

Featured Image Credit: @F1 on X

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