In the latest episode of the ‘Cut to the Race’ podcast, Oli was joined by Matt, Dan, and the newly appointed writer for the nerds, Alex Mclachlan, for an unfiltered reaction and panel discussion to a thrilling season opener in Bahrain.
To kick things off, the panel had a recap of the build-up to the new F1 season, discussing their thoughts on new driver line-ups and testing. The nerds discussed which of the three rookies they were most (and least) looking forward to seeing take to the track.
Following this, the nerds shared their thoughts on what they all agreed was a thrilling qualifying and picked out their stand-out moments. Tsunoda’s impressively quick P2 lap in Q1 was unsurprisingly mentioned whilst Ferrari’s surprise 1-2 in Q2 was a highlight of Matt’s. Moving onto the race reaction, the panel decided to work their way up through the constructor’s championship to discuss the performance of each team. Kicking things off with Haas. The nerds all agreed that Haas’ performance, and that of car number nine, was certainly one to forget. Alex mentioned how he feels Haas is already suffering from putting two rookie drivers in their seats and wonders if number nine, in particular, can even handle racing an F1 car on the limit.
As the panel’s discussion climbed up the leaderboard, to Matt’s dismay there was no avoiding the discussion around Sebastian Vettel’s dismal debut for Aston Martin. Even as a Seb fan, Matt admitted that he was running out of excuses for the costly mistakes the German makes out on track. Interestingly, the nerds also discussed how underwhelmed they were about Daniel Ricciardo’s first race for McLaren, with a general feeling that he hasn’t fully settled into the car. Dan’s opinion was that once Ricciardo has had enough time to settle in, he’ll be able to be more aggressive in the car and thinks McLaren could do very well this year with their driver line-up.
The podcast reached its climax when the nerds began to discuss the fight at the top. An interesting debate was raised around track limits following Max Verstappen having to concede his lead to race-winner Lewis Hamilton after the stewards deemed his move illegal. Whilst all nerds agreed that the decision to penalize Verstappen was correct, Matt argued that Hamilton hadn’t been penalized for exceeding those same limits 29 times throughout the race. Oli also suggested that the FIA had been inconsistent with their rules and argued that this had once again let the fans down.
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