With the 2018 F1 season season well and truly alight and alive, Formula 1 moves to Canada. Montreal is the host city for this round and it will be the setting for what promises to be a titanic battle for outright F1 leadership.
Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo will be on a high. Fresh from his scintillating win on the streets of Monte Carlo, and with his race track presence on a high, Ricciardo sits third on the championship ladder. With post race confirmation that it was yet another mechanical related failure to contend with, the Montreal race could prove to be the catalyst for him to make the decision of which path to take for 2019.
It’s a situation Red Bull want, nay, need sorted, before they can have the Perth born driver’s signature on an extension to his Red Bull contract. With the current Renault supplied package proving more unreliable than Ricciardo and Red Bull are remotely satisfied with, Christian Horner says: “The reality is it’s finding a solution to conclude a deal with Daniel in the next couple of months. The first thing is to get the engine sorted and then very much follow on from there with the driver.”
However, to put his position into perspective, should he win and current first and second place sitters Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel fail to finish, as highly unlikely as that is, he would still finish over ten points shy of Hamilton’s current 110 point status. He’d also finish just one point ahead of Vettel who is on 96 before Montreal’s round.
Hamilton’s view is that Ferrari is still the greatest threat, saying: “I still feel they’re the strongest and Sebastian has been doing the strongest job.”
What all of the drivers have to contend with is a circuit that’s relatively corner free.Relatively in that turn ten is a 180 degree hairpin, and the six/seven complex will easily catch out a driver that blinks. With a 4.361 kilometre total length, and a fastest race lap time of just 1:13.6, the longish straights and mostly otherwise easy to navigate corners may see Rubens Barrichello’s 2004 race record lowered thanks to the hypersoft tires introduced this year.
Monaco showed that this new rubber can offer some super quick times. Monaco showed that the tires can also quickly degrade on a tight circuit. Montreal’s circuit is a little different in that the teams will have to deal with a relatively sudden drop and regain of height from turn 3. Although track direction is a right left right from three into four then five, they’re not tight so braking will be height, not turn related.
Round 7 of the 2018 Formula 1 season gives up a potentially season changing race. Quebec’s capital offers not only, in 2018, plenty of sights to see, but also world renowned dining and night life venues that mesh with the F1 lifestyle. Checkout our Destination Guide for where to stay, dine and play in Montreal.
Formula 1 Grand Prix Heineken Du Canada 2018 starts with the first practice session on Friday, June 8, at 10:00 local time, with the race scheduled for a 14:10 local time start on Sunday June 10.