A jam-packed global run-in, racing on the streets of Las Vegas, unique pieces of history on the line, and the final calls in the driver market; Watch the first race after the summer break this weekend on Sky Sports F1, with Sunday's Dutch GP starting at 2pm
By James Galloway
Last Updated: 21/08/23 1:05pm
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The Formula 1 season is back for more drama at the Dutch Grand Prix on Sunday 27th August.
What races are left?
Ten races in 14 weeks.
That's the busy schedule that will take Formula 1's stars and cars through the final three months of the 2023 season when action resumes for the first time in nearly four weeks at Zandvoort on Friday.
With the closing weeks of the European season and the return of the longer-haul flyaways, the back-end of a Formula 1 season offers plenty of intrigue and the run-in to the end of this particular campaign is especially busy.
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The headlines for the remaining events include:
- Races on four continents and in nine different countries
- The first-ever Las Vegas Grand Prix
- Three double-headers and one triple-header
- Two street tracks
- Three sprint weekends
- Early-morning and primetime evening UK race starts
So when is the Las Vegas GP?
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Lewis Hamilton, Sergio Perez and George Russell put on a dazzling demonstration run for the Las Vegas Grand Prix launch party
Ah yes, Vegas.
Possibly the most-anticipated new event of all-time in the sport will see F1's stars and cars taking to the world-famous Las Vegas Strip on November 17-19.
On a 14-corner track specially designed to run past such famous landmarks such as Caesars Palace and the Bellagio, the race will run under floodlights on Saturday evening in the States - with the action live at 6am on the Sunday morning for UK viewers on Sky Sports F1.
F1 has raced in Las Vegas before, back in 1981-82, but this is an altogether bigger deal with the sport's increased popularity in the States underlined by what's likely to be an incredibly glitzy and star-studded occasion in one of the most famous places on Earth.
The races left live on Sky Sports F1 in 2023
|Date||Grand Prix||UK race start time|
|August 25-27||Dutch GP||2pm|
|September 1-3||Italian GP||2pm|
|September 15-17||Singapore GP||1pm|
|September 22-24||Japanese GP||6am|
|October 6-8||Qatar GP*||6pm|
|October 20-22||United States GP*||8pm|
|October 27-29||Mexico City GP||8pm|
|November 3-5||Sao Paulo GP*||5pm|
|November 17-19||Las Vegas GP||6am|
|November 24-26||Abu Dhabi GP||1pm|
How soon could Verstappen clinch the title?
An astonishing 125 points clear of second place in the world championship as the season resumes and on a run of eight consecutive race victories, there's surely no doubting already where this year's crown is headed - Max Verstappen, for the third year running.
His monster points advantage is the equivalent of five race wins (and you can make that six over the first non-Red Bull driver in the championship).
The more realistic question then perhaps is just how soon could the Dutchman mathematically wrap up his third title?
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Naturally, it depends on the points head-to-heads against team-mate Sergio Perez, and the other remaining mathematical chasers, in the forthcoming rounds but an earlier coronation than even last year (four rounds to go) appears achievable.
The earliest Verstappen could wrap up the crown would theoretically be at the Japanese GP in four races' time on September 24. But that would require him to hold an advantage of at least 180 points over the pack, which is probably pushing it barring a string of difficult point-less weekends for all of his nearest challengers in the next races (Zandvoort, Monza and Singapore).
It's therefore more conceivable that Verstappen will clinch the crown at the following round in Qatar on October 6-8, a sprint weekend where he'd need to hold an advantage of 146 points by the end of the Sunday to retain his title.
Can any rival, or anything, stop Red Bull from going unbeaten?
Red Bull's 12/12 Sunday scorecard to this point of the season has raised the spectre of them achieving an invincible campaign of race wins, a feat never achieved in F1's 64-year history.
It was McLaren who famously got closest in 1988, during their golden Ayrton Senna-Alain Prost era. They only missed out by one victory thanks to that year's Italian GP at Monza, when race leader Senna and backmarker Jean-Louis Schlesser collided.
There were only 16 races on the calendar back then, so the Red Bull team of 2023 would have to navigate six further rounds still unbeaten were they to set a unique record at the end of the Abu Dhabi GP on November 26.
The relentless form of Verstappen in particular - he has won every race since the start of May and 10 in total - has certainly added strength to the growing 'will they, won't they' debate.
Who has gone closest to a perfect season?
|Team||Year||Win ratio (wins/races)|
In addition to the car's speed and track-to-track versatility is its reliability record: Verstappen is on a finishing streak of 31 races stretching back to April 2022.
But 10 races remains a long way to navigate without fault, even for dominant F1 cars and drivers, and so Red Bull understandably remain wary about talk of this record.
To preserve the run they may well also need Sergio Perez to also rediscover more consistent form. Although taking two fine early wins himself, Perez has only finished second to Verstappen on three of the 10 occasions the Dutchman has won this season. That's only one more second place than Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton - which does offer at least a window of hope for the chasing pack if Verstappen or his RB19 were to stumble.
All teams will be turning, or have already turned, off their car development on 2023 but there will still be packages of updates through the grid for the next races, which could narrow the gap at the front.
With Aston Martin, Ferrari, Mercedes and McLaren all having their moments this season, we'll also start to find out whether one single consistent challenger to Red Bull emerges over the closing rounds heading towards 2024.
When will Hamilton's contract be signed?
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Despite being 38, Mercedes boss Toto Wolff believes Lewis Hamilton could be in the sport for at least another four years
There doesn't seem any doubt that Lewis Hamilton will still be on the grid beyond this season at Mercedes, but the wait remains for their latest deal to be finally signed, sealed and announced.
Back at the start of July, Mercedes boss Toto Wolff said that "we're not talking anything anymore about duration, money, all of that, it's other topics", suggesting that it was only minor points left to iron out.
While holidays would have taken up time for the respective parties and representatives over the past month, the pause in the racing may still have allowed some of those final i's to be dotted and t's crossed.
And what about the rest of the '24 market?
Six other seats remain open on next season's grid, although it appears unlikely there will be much movement there either.
Haas and AlphaTauri have neither of their respective drivers confirmed for 2024, although the incumbents at each (Nico Hulkenberg/Kevin Magnussen and Yuki Tsunoda/Daniel Ricciardo) are certainly the likely ones to fill them. AlphaTauri of course only recently made a change with Nyck de Vries dropped in favour of Ricciardo for at least the remainder of this season.
Alfa Romeo look set to hand a new deal to Zhou Guanyu, while Williams have a decision to make about a second season for Logan Sargeant.
Will there be more cost-cap controversy?
It was the story that dominated much of the second half of last season, so what chance of more rumblings and rows once the FIA reveals teams' certified cost-cap submissions for the 2022 season?
The first round of rumours about the latest set of reports surfaced from the German and Italian press recently, but the FIA was quick to stamp down on that speculation by labelling any claims at this stage "factually wrong" with the auditing process not complete.
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There is no timeframe on when that process will be concluded, but that's unlikely to stop any further speculation over forthcoming weeks. For reference, the report for 2021 was published last October, when Red Bull were found in 'minor' breach and later handed a $7m fine and restrictions on car development time.
Formula 1 returns after the summer break with the Dutch GP and all sessions will be live on Sky Sports F1 from this Friday. Stream F1 on Sky Sports with NOW for just £26 a month for 12 months. Cancel anytime
These changes include floor edges being raised by 15mm, the diffuser throat height being raised, and edge stiffness increased, and the addition of a sensor to monitor porpoising.What happened at Dutch Grand Prix? ›
Max Verstappen converted pole position into victory at the Dutch Grand Prix for the third year in a row, navigating an action-packed, rain-hit encounter to take the chequered flag ahead of Fernando Alonso and Pierre Gasly and draw level with Sebastian Vettel on nine successive F1 wins.Where is Formula 1 2023 schedule? ›
- Bahrain. 5 Mar 2023.
- Saudi Arabian. 19 Mar 2023.
- Australian. 1 Apr 2023.
- Azerbaijan. 30 Apr 2023.
- Miami. 7 May 2023.
- Monaco. 28 May 2023.
- Spanish. 4 Jun 2023.
- Canadian. 18 Jun 2023.
Hamilton, who started in 13th, was one of the last drivers to switch to intermediates early in the race and was down in 18th. However, he came through the field, together with Lando Norris, and eventually finished in sixth amid the rain chaos.Who is not returning to F1 2023? ›
We've said goodbye to Sebastian Vettel, Mick Schumacher and Daniel Ricciardo, but welcome Logan Sargeant and Oscar Piastri as rookies and Nico Hülkenberg returns after two seasons away.Which F1 races are dropped for 2023? ›
2023 Chinese Grand Prix cancelled
Updated 13:35 2nd December: For the third year running Formula 1 has had to ammend its calendar due to Covid-19 restrictions, after the series confirmed that the 2023 Chinese Grand Prix, scheduled to take place in April, will no longer take place.
Verstappen is the -400 favorite (bet $400 to win $100) in the 2023 Dutch Grand Prix odds followed by Perez at +900.Why did Dutch Grand Prix stop? ›
The Dutch Grand Prix was halted on Lap 64 after heavy rain fell at Zandvoort to leave racing impossible in the conditions, with Zhou Guanyu having crashed on the wet track and chaos in the pits as the drivers stopped for wet tyres.What happened to Lewis at Zandvoort? ›
Hamilton finished sixth at Zandvoort despite dropping to last place in the opening laps of the race when his Mercedes pit wall were slow to initiate a switch to wet weather tyres.What happened to Lewis Hamilton in Zandvoort? ›
Asked in an interview with Sky Sports what happened on his final run, Hamilton said: “I did two fast laps at the end and the tyres overheated, so I couldn't improve on the last lap.”
Hamilton's qualifying session ended on a disappointing note as he secured P13, having executed his final flying lap a single lap too early, which prevented him from advancing into Q3 on a drying track.What is different about 2023 F1 cars? ›
Alpine is the team that has changed the most in terms of mechanical design with its new pushrod rear suspension layout. There's also a completely revised layout in the wishbones compared to 2022. Alfa Romeo has moved the pushrod strut forward of the wishbones, a solution that copies what was seen on the RB18 last year.What is the DRS rule change in F1 2023? ›
The revised rule states the difference drivers may use DRS: 22.1 (c) (i) after he has completed one lap after the start or following a Safety Car period during each sprint session, ii) after he has completed two laps after the start or following a safety car period during each race.What we know about F1 2023? ›
This year was set to feature a record 24 races, but the cancellation of the Chinese Grand Prix and the decision not to replace it has lowered that to 23, which remains a record number for one season. Between the first race in Bahrain and final race on Nov. 26 there are just 15 weekends without a grand prix.Is F1 2023 better than 2022? ›
F1 23 is a much more driveable and enjoyable experience on the track, with plenty of players finally able to remove the traction control assist as there is more linear and predictable peaks of wheelspin now. What is this? The experience on controller has also been greatly improved.