I used to not give a damn about auto racing. I didn't even consider it a sport. That is until I began to fall in love with the sport (and science) that is Formula 1. The best drivers in the world, in the best racing machines in the world, on the toughest tracks in the world. That alone makes for incredible drama and theatre. Then when you remember that these cars in Formula 1 can reach speeds of over 200 miles per hour, it becomes even more insane. The thought of going that fast makes me queasy. These 20 drivers do it time and again, multiple times a weekend and don't blink an eye.
This season has been an absolute masterclass between two drivers. In the Mercedes, Lewis Hamilton, the 7 time world champion looking to become the first 8 time winner and cement his legacy as the best ever. And in the Red Bull Honda, Max Verstappen, the 24 year old phenom with more wins than his rival this season, chasing that elusive first world championship.
Both enter the final race weekend of the season tied on 369.5 points setting up a 'best result takes the crown' scenario in Abu Dhabi on Sunday.
Both drivers have been going back and forth in the standings, with 5 lead changes for 1st place in the championship. Most recently, Verstappen had opportunities to seal the title, but Hamilton, with his back against the wall, has rolled to three straight wins to tie it up before the 21st and final race of 2021.
While I'm aware that Formula 1 has not yet reached peak interest in the United States, it's grown exponentially over the last 5 years. So much so, that a second US race will be added starting in 2022. The Miami Gran Prix will launch next year at a new venue around Hard Rock Stadium, the home of the Miami Dolphins. The United States Gran Prix has been held at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas since 2012. Two races in the country is a big deal and a sign that Formula 1 sees real growth from a business perspective in the States.
If you haven't been watching this season, check it out this weekend. Friday practice sessions are followed by qualifying on Saturday, and the Abu Dhabi Gran Prix begins Sunday at 8 am ET on this side of the world.
Watch the drama unfold before you, as Hamilton and Verstappen fight and claw for milliseconds in search of a world championship.