On the eve of the 2021 F1 season finale as Hamilton and Verstappen prepare to go head-to-head with 369.5 points each, some eager fans are already looking ahead to the 2022 season, when the sport returns with new team line-ups in the all-new regulation cars.
The current Constructor’s Championship holders, Mercedes AMG will see the arrival of British star-in-waiting, George Russell to replace the outgoing Valtteri Bottas, as the Finn moves to Alfa Romeo, following his four-year stint at the German team since joining in 2018.
Bottas will look to add to his 10 career race wins at Alfa Romeo and will be joined by the first ever Chinese F1 driver in Guanyu Zhou, as the 22-year-old replaces Antonio Giovinazzi to usher in a new era for the team.
Departing Alfa Romeo, the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix will also bring down the curtain on Kimi Raikkonen’s storied career, with the Finn retiring from the sport after a total of 352 F1 race starts.
Following George Russell’s switch to Mercedes, Williams have signed Alex Albon to partner the returning Nicholas Latifi, as the team aims to rebuild in the new season with an all-new car.
For Team Alpine, two-time world champion Fernando Alonso returns to the side along with French racer Esteban Ocon to ensure some consistency going into 2022.
Elsewhere, Red Bull will line-up again with current championship leader, Max Verstappen and his running mate Sergio Perez, as the team look to continue their rise in fortunes to challenge at the very top of the sport. AlphaTauri will also hold on to their duo, Pierre Gasly and Yuki Tsunoda for next season.
Ferrari will maintain their strong line-up with Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz following their impressive performances in 2021, while McLaren will see their star pairing in Daniel Riccardo and Lando Norris continue in 2022.
Aston Martin will go into the 2022 season with a strong desire to compete at the top of the championship, with four-time world champion, Sebastian Vettel set to return to the team alongside Lance Stroll, hoping to improve on this season.
Team Haas will see one of F1’s favourite sons, Mick Schumacher return for the 2022 season alongside Nikita Mazepin as the new line-ups providing exciting discussions in the off-season for the season opener in Bahrain next March.
Fans can witness history at this year’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix at Yas Marina Circuit this weekend, with tickets still available at www.yasmarinacircuit.com.