São Paulo Grand Prix 2023: Race Predictions

São Paulo Grand Prix 2023: Race Predictions

November 3, 2023

The final race of the 2023 F1 season’s final triple header sees us head to Brazil for the São Paulo Grand Prix. This will also be the final Sprint event of the season. 

In this article, we take a look at a couple of predictions ahead of the 2023 São Paulo Grand Prix.

Home advantage

Mercedes’ upward trajectory has been nothing but extraordinary. Such has been their comeback that, from being fourth in the Constructors’ Championship at one point, the Silver Arrows are now second and slowly getting out of Ferrari’s hands. 

Heading to Brazil, especially the Interlagos circuit, it will be advantage Mercedes; more specifically, advantage Lewis Hamilton. A three-time Brazilian Grand Prix winner, Hamilton won his first-ever World Title here back in 2008, and his last win in 2021 also was a classic Hamilton drive that saw him charge through the field for the win. Brazil is even more special for Hamilton, as the locals have adopted him as one of their own; two years ago, he was awarded honorary citizenship of Brazil.

Hamilton heads to the Brazil race having finished second in the last two races (albeit his P2 finish in Texas was disqualified post-race). While Mercedes might not have had as strong a season as Red Bull have had, with a solid race car that has strong long-run pace and an in-form Hamilton, the Brazil race might be their best chance to take their first win of the 2023 season.

One to watch out for: Lewis Hamilton

White noise

One has to be living under a rock to avoid hearing about all the talk of driver changes this past week. Following the Mexico race, it’s being suggested that Aston Martin’s Fernando Alonso could replace Sergio Pérez at Red Bull, with the Mexican long rumoured to lose his seat due to his poor performances this season. Alonso, though, have called the rumours rubbish, and Red Bull themselves have been very particular about their stance on the topic — that Pérez has a contract with them until next year.

All this noise is bound to affect Pérez, though, who was also previously rumoured to lose his seat to former Red Bull driver Daniel Ricciardo, who made his comeback earlier in the year as he replaced Nyck de Vries mid-season.

Pérez’ recent run has been horrendous, him having not finished on the podium in the last five races despite having the fastest machine on the grid. He didn’t even make it past one corner at his home race last weekend. The Brazil race is likely to be another tough one for him, and he’s bound to feel even more pressure and heat. 

Records meant to be broken

It was Michael Schumacher in 2004 and Sebastian Vettel in 2013 who held the record for most number of wins in a single F1 season before Max Verstappen broke it last year with 15. 

The reigning World Champion has already surpassed his last year’s tally following the 2023 Mexican GP win, and it looks increasingly likely that he will end up adding more wins before the season ends.

It has been a record-breaking season from the Dutchman, and it shouldn’t come as a surprise if he is standing on the top step of the podium once more come Sunday. 

Pole Prediction: Max Verstappen

Win Prediction: Red Bull

Race details

Circuit: Autódromo de Interlagos
Venue: São Paulo, Brazil
Practice Session 1 time: 20:00, November 3
Qualifying time: 23:30, November 3
Sprint Shootout time: 19:30, November 4
Sprint time: 00:00, November 5
Main race time: 22:30, November 5
Where to watch: F1 TV Pro

(All timings IST)

Aditya Chaudhuri

Hailing from the City of Joy, the things that bring me joy are cricket, a good non-tilt CS:GO session, F1 and movies.

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