F1 Fantasy 2022: Spanish GP

Formula One is back this weekend and so too is Stephen Clibbon's F1 Fantasy preview! Our resident F1 fanatic looks ahead to the sixth race of the season - the Spanish Grand Prix - and shares his top tips for the weekend.

Stephen Clibbon

Hola, es la semana de la carrera. Yes, it’s race week and this week we are heading to Barcelona for the Spanish GP.

Round six of the 2022 F1 season will see drivers take on the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya in a slightly changed format compared to the one we saw last season.

The main change comes to turn 10 in a hope of increasing overtaking opportunities, which fans will be sitting with fingers crossed for this weekend.

The track is a good mix of high and low speed corners which will really be a challenge for teams; many of whom are still struggling to find the right set-up for their cars to reach maximum performance.

The Spanish GP has been flagged by many teams as their first chance to bring their first major upgrades packages to their cars. So this means the question on everyone lips is, does anyone have a killer upgrade package to blow the field away this weekend?

Alpine will be fitting more upgrades to their car after in recent weeks they had introduced a revised floor, while Mike Krack, the team principle at Aston Martin has previously stated that the team will introduce upgrades to their car around the Spanish Grand Prix.

Daniel Ricciardo has also come out this week and said, “we are bringing some upgrades to the car for the weekend…” With both McLaren drivers seeing improvements in the car in recent races, despite a poor result for the team in Miami, they will be hoping these upgrades can push them to the top of the midfield pack.

With this weekend’s trip to Spain, it will mean the first return to the track since the first pre-season test of the season.

This will give Mercedes their first chance to compare data since their radical ‘zero’ sidepods design upgrade that was seen for Bahrain testing.

They will be hoping that this weekend can shed more light on their porpoising problems which have affected them since the change. Could we even seen them contemplate a ‘downgrade’ back to the original specification if their data from this weekend is not as expected?

Could this weekend see the return of a Spanish driver taking the top step in Spain?

Carlos Sainz will be hoping for just that this weekend. It would really be something of a fairy tale should he be able to pick up his first ever win in F1.

He would not only be managing to win his home grand prix, but he would be doing it in a Ferrari, the same car Fernando Alonso last won on home soil.

After a poor couple of race weekends for Sainz, he managed to get himself back on the podium in Miami giving him the confidence boost just in time. The big question is though, would you pick him in your F1 Fantasy to beat Max Verstappen and Charles Leclerc?

Lewis Hamilton

So, who should you be looking to have in your F1 Fantasy team for the Spanish GP?

If you went on pervious race form for the Spanish GP then you’d have to look no further than Lewis Hamilton.

He’s managed to win the past five races in Catalunya, but I think he would be relying on Mercedes brining an out of this world upgrade this weekend to stand any chance of making it six in a row.

Charles Leclerc did manage to finish in 4th last season, beating Sergio Perez in a Ferrari that was much less impressive than it is this season and Max Verstappen managed to finish second behind Hamilton but also took the fastest lap of the race and only just missed out on pole by 0.036 seconds.

These two are must haves in your Fantasy team still this season as I see them locked into a battle that will continue to go into the following rounds.

Fernando Alonso is another Spanish driver who will be looking to have a great weekend and could be a pick to get in for a bit cheaper than he was.

He has had a terrible season and is still the lowest scoring driver in F1 Fantasy this season, but he will be looking to show what the Alpine car can do and with them receiving upgrades for this weekend, if the reliability of the car is improved, a top 6 could well be on the cards for him this weekend.

Bonus streak points alert! There’s only one driver that can manage adding bonus streak points this weekend and that is Perez on a race streak. A driver race streak will mean an extra 10 bonus points should that driver manage to finish in the top 10.

In terms of constructors streak points, Ferrari have the chance for their team to earn bonus streak points for qualifying whereas owners of Red Bull could earn bonus streak points for Qualifying and the race.

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