Will Spanish drivers live up to expectations during F1 Spain?

by Lorraine Williamson
F1 Barcelona


Expectations were high on Sunday for the two Spaniards who race in Formula 1. Last weekend the race was organised in Spain itself and tens of thousands of fans of the Spaniards Sainz and Alonso hoped for a Spanish tour de force. 

Despite these high expectations, the Dutchman Max Verstappen dominated from the first metres during the training sessions on Friday and Saturday. He set by far the fastest time several times, which eventually also happened on Saturday during qualifying. 

Spanish fans flock to Barcelona’s F1 circuit 

Yet most Spaniards did not come for the invincible Verstappen. Fans of Sainz and Alonso flocked to the event in droves. While it was still fairly quiet in the stands during practice and qualifying, it was packed with fans along the circuit during the race on Sunday. Fans who came, in green for Fernando Alonso who currently races for Ashton Martin, and in red for Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz. 

High expectations of Spanish drivers 

However, much of the hope of winning for Spain was pinned on Alonso. He has been on the podium several times in recent races and since he was allowed to race in his home country, expectations were high. Unfortunately, good results did not materialise for this Spaniard. He seemed to be getting insufficient speed in the car all weekend. This was later also reflected in the result of the qualification. Fernando Alonso unfortunately did not get further than ninth place on Saturday and therefore had to start from midfield on Sunday. 

The other Spaniard proved more successful; Carlos Sainz finished second in qualifying. Despite this great result, Max Verstappen was ahead of him by no less than half a second. At that time it was already clear that it would be difficult for other drivers to trump Verstappen on Sunday. 

Cogesa Expats

Did rain disrupt strategy in Spain? 

The predicted showers for the past weekend hung, sometimes literally, over the drivers’ heads. Beforehand it was therefore interesting to anticipate whether the track would remain dry or whether everyone had to completely adapt the strategy on wet road surfaces. 

On Sunday the race started dry and sunny. After an exciting first few metres, where Carlos Sainz almost came next to Max Verstappen, the Dutchman pulled ahead. He eventually managed to extend his lead by tens of seconds, allowing him to make more than one free pit stop to change his tyres. 

For a moment it seemed to strange when the British George Russell felt rain. However, a few rounds later it turned out to be sweat drops on the inside of his helmet. Something that was widely laughed about after the race. Although dark clouds gathered close to the circuit at the end of the race, ultimately, the track remained dry. 

Where are the Spaniards now in the World Cup standings? 

Due to his own dominance and the fact that the performance of his main competitors, Pérez and Alonso, failed to materialise, Max was able to further extend his lead in the World Cup. In the end, Sainz took fifth place and Alonso managed to finish seventh. 

After Sunday, Verstappen is at the top with 170 points. He is followed by Sergio Pérez with 117 points and Alonso with 99 points. Sainz is currently sixth in the World Cup standings with 58 points. 

You may also like