F1 2023 season review — Part 1

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Max Verstappen and Red Bull further underlined their status as the package to beat in Formula One in 2023, sealing both Drivers' and Constructors' World Championship titles with record points tallies and win totals.

But for several teams further down the order, 2023 was an altogether more trying year. Starting with those ranked sixth to tenth, Xinhua takes a look at how each team fared in 2023.

Haas — 10th, 12 points

(Nico Hulkenberg — 16th, 9 points; Kevin Magnussen — 19th, 3 points)

Falling back from a promising 2022, Haas propped up the Constructors' standings after a dismal 2023, with the VF-23 gaining a reputation for cooking its rear tyres.

On the driving strength, the experienced duo of Nico Hulkenberg and Kevin Magnussen plodded gamely on with little prospect of points, with Hulkenberg generally the quicker of the two and showing particularly well in qualifying. Magnussen never seemed to fully get to grips with the tricky VF-23, and both will be hoping for a more competitive mount in 2024.

Alfa Romeo — 9th, 16 points

(Valtteri Bottas — 15th, 10 points; Zhou Guanyu — 18th, 6 points)

A season of disappointment for Alfa Romeo in 2023, as the team fell from sixth to ninth in the standings as others got a better handle on F1's technical regulations. The C43 lacked pace from the outset, relegating Valtteri Bottas and Zhou Guanyu to scrapping for lower points positions when circumstances allowed. The team's gradual metamorphosis into the Audi works outfit in 2026 seems to have been a background distraction, but the highly-rated James Key should prove a valuable addition to the technical department from 2024 onwards, as the team looks forward to increased investment from the Four Rings.

Despite limited prospects of success, Bottas appears to be enjoying his team leader status at Alfa after years in Lewis Hamilton's shadow at Mercedes, and seems to have accepted that he is unlikely to add to his tally of ten Grand Prix wins. In the other car, Zhou was closer to Bottas than he had been in 2022, and the Chinese keeps his seat for a third season in 2024, though it remains to be seen whether he will rise above the massed ranks of F1's journeymen.

AlphaTauri — 8th, 25 points

(Yuki Tsunoda — 14th, 17 points; Daniel Ricciardo — 17th, 6 points; Liam Lawson — 20th, 2 points; Nyck de Vries — 22nd, 0 points)

A poor season for AlphaTauri, with just three points from the first 14 races. Yuki Tsunoda at least showed well in a difficult car, proving that he has grown as a driver since an error-strewn rookie year in 2021.

In the other car, rookie Nyck de Vries never seemed truly at home at AlphaTauri, who ditched him before the summer break in order to bring Daniel Ricciardo back to F1. However, the Australian's comeback was interrupted by injury just three races in, leading to an unexpected call-up for rising star Liam Lawson. The New Zealander generally impressed in his five outings, and though AlphaTauri are sticking with Tsunoda and Ricciardo for 2024, Lawson seems certain to graduate to a full-time F1 ride sooner or later.

AlphaTauri will be known by a new name in 2024, and with long-serving Team Principal Franz Tost retiring, to be replaced by ex-Ferrari man Laurent Mekies in his first senior managerial role, the winds of change are set to sweep through the corridors at Faenza.

Williams — 7th, 28 points

(Alex Albon — 13th, 27 points; Logan Sargeant — 21st, 1 point)

At a Williams team now headed by the highly-rated James Vowles, Alex Albon was one of the stars of the season, frequently transcending the limits of his FW45 to place it above quicker rivals and in the points, almost singlehandedly securing Williams a valuable seventh place in the Constructors' standings. The Grove squad may struggle to keep hold of Albon if he maintains his upward trajectory into 2024, with the Anglo-Thai driver's reputation now fully restored after a chastening demotion from Red Bull earlier in the decade.

Albon's heroics frequently made Logan Sargeant look somewhat ordinary in the sister car, and the American rookie did himself no favors with a slew of off-track excursions that saw the team rack up a large repair bill. Despite suggestions that he may lose his drive, Sargeant is set to continue with Williams into 2024, but will need to up his game to remain in F1 beyond then.

Alpine — 6th, 120 points

(Pierre Gasly — 11th, 62 points; Esteban Ocon — 12th, 58 points)

A season of mid-table mediocrity for Alpine, who were well clear of the bottom four teams but never consistently above any of the top five. Esteban Ocon and Pierre Gasly ran each other closely and shone on occasion, with both scoring a podium finish each, but neither showed enough consistency to suggest that they should be at a more illustrious team.

Alpine's reputation for off-track turmoil and political machination drew on apace in 2023, with Team Principal Otmar Szafnauer shown the door following August's Belgian Grand Prix after less than two years in charge. Four months on, no permanent replacement has yet been appointed, and a lack of direction from above no doubt affected the team's on-track performance. The Renault power unit also seemed to be among the weaker engines on the grid, and there remains uncertainty over the team's prospects and potential into 2024.

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  •  Review

Source: www.dailyfinland.fi

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