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F1 2023 Midseason Report Cards: RB19 Gives Red Bull Wings

Verstappen, Red Bull Dominate Thanks to Legendary Vehicle

The 2023 F1 season heads to the summer break with Max Verstappen and Red Bull dominating. The driver and team are in another stratosphere, and the F1 picks and odds have now excluded both in outright betting. You may just wrap up this season as Verstappen will win his third straight drivers’ championship. But how have the rest of the contenders fared? Sterling performances are few and far between.

Driver Grades

  • Max Verstappen: A+
  • Fernando Alonso: A-
  • Oscar Piastri: A-Lando Norris: B+
  • Lewis Hamilton: B+
  • Alexander Albon: B
  • George Russel: B-
  • Charles Leclerc: B-
  • Carlos Sainz Jr: B-
  • Sergio Perez: C+
  • Niko Hulkenberg: C+
  • Esteban Ocon: C
  • Yuki Tsunoda: C
  • Pierre Gasly: C
  • Valtteri Bottas: C-
  • Zhou Guanyu: C-
  • Kevin Magnussen: D+
  • Lance Stroll: D
  • Logan Sargeant: D
  • Nyck de Vries: D-
  • Daniel Ricciardo: INC

Verstappen may be the Sportsman of the Year if he continues this historic run, so he deserves full marks. But his running mate, Sergio “Checo” Perez, gets a C+ despite being second in the standings. Perez’s two wins this season have been overshadowed by his constant struggles in qualifying. Recent F1 news also suggests he may be in his last season with Red Bull given his underwhelming results.

F1 2023 Midseason Report Cards: RB19 Gives Red Bull Wings
Red Bull Racing's Dutch driver Max Verstappen | Kenzo tribouillard / pool / afp

Behind Verstappen are two other drivers also getting As, but for different reasons. Fernando Alonso has wowed everyone with his strong start for Aston Martin. His six podium finishes are tied for second with Perez. And given his teammate Lance Stroll’s subpar performance (he gets a D), you have to give much of the credit to Alonso and not the car.

As for Oscar Piastri, the Australian has impressed as a rookie. He and Lando Norris (B+) had a rough start with McLaren. But they have since turned things around and have looked like the next-best drivers on the course since the British Grand Prix. A bit of a disappointment in Belgium takes a bit of momentum away, but they’ve still been much better than anticipated.

Lewis Hamilton remains a betting online top choice with his steady performances. He gets a solid B+ while his teammate, George Russell, joins the Ferrari duo of Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz in the upper midfield with a B-. They’ve had middling results and battle it out for the fifth and sixth spots in the standings.

One last driver worth noting is Alexander Albon of Williams. He’s had three top-10 finishes this season and is responsible for all of the team’s 11 points. Albon has pushed the constructor’s vehicle to its potential and deserves a B for his efforts.

Constructor Grades

  • Red Bull: A
  • Mercedes: B+
  • McLaren: B-
  • Aston Martin: B-
  • Ferrari: C+
  • Alpine: C
  • Williams-: C
  • Haas: C-
  • Alfa Romeo: C-
  • AlphaTauri: D

For obvious reasons, Red Bull gets an A. It just misses on the A+ partly due to Perez’s issues, which can’t entirely be blamed on him. But most F1 predictions have Red Bull winning every single race this season, which would put it in a tier of its own.

A distant second to Red Bull is Mercedes at B+. The German constructor has been outshined by Aston Martin in the first parts of the season and now by McLaren. But compared to the two, it has been consistent and is the sportsbook’s favorite to finish second in the team standings with a 51-point lead over third-placed Aston Martin.

It has all but regressed for the British constructor despite its strong start. Not even Alonso’s superb driving can carry this team, with just two top-six finishes in the last four races and now in danger of being surpassed by Ferrari (five points behind). But it gets a B- because of what it did in the first eight races.

McLaren gets the same grade for the opposite reason: what it’s doing in the last few races. The constructor was this close to having two double podium finishes in Britain and Hungary. Still, it remains a distant fifth in the standings but has an outside chance to finish third if it can keep up the pace.

Ferrari gets a C+ to round out the top five. The team continues to struggle with its strategy, and its early season car failures place it just behind the other teams. But Ferrari is building momentum and may be worth abet online moving forward.

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