F1 returns to Imola for the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix after 14 years as drivers are set to face an outstanding old-fashioned challenge in Italy. Giulio Magliano previews this race at a historic track and provides his predictions for the race on Sunday.
Emilia Romagna Grand Prix
Imola is in the centre of Emilia Romagna, southeast of Bologna and close by the Ferrari HQ in Maranello.
Saturday – Practice 9:00 GMT – Qualifying 13:00 GMT
Sunday – Race 12:10 BST
The current standings for the F1 Drivers
Current Standings for the F1 Construction Teams
- Red Bull
- Racing Point
- Alfa Romeo
Where can I watch the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix?
Sky Sports F1 HD
Relevant News – Emilia Romagna Grand Prix
Dark History of Imola
We previously knew the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix as the San Marino Grand Prix in 1994, where we saw Roland’s accident in the second qualifying session. Then on race day came Ayrton’s crash on the seventh lap and was rushed away by helicopter.
A two-day weekend
The return of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix will be the first time a two-day race weekend is planned where teams are limited to just one 90 minute practice session on Saturday morning. That’s a reduction of two-and-a-half-hours for every team, so they will need to condense their racing plans and therefore having less data with which to prepare, leading to more unpredictability.
The future of Albon and Perez
Red Bull wanted to make their decision soon for their 2021 line up and Alex Albon remains the team’s preferred candidate to partner with Verstappen next year, but they still find it challenging to make the decision following his recent performances. It displayed both Portimao and Imola as key race weekends for Albon, but he secured a 12th position in Portugal, so he will have to exceed his previous performances this week to prove he belongs to the top.
The same situation is occurring with Sergio Perez regarding his potential future at the end of this year. Talks about a switch in 2021 between Sergio Perez and George Russell are in the air, but there is no concrete deal in place.
Race for third place
The third position in the constructors’ championship could be anyone’s guess now, with new contenders emerging week by week. Racing Point are currently holding that position, but Mclaren and Renault are incrementally closing the gap where any of the three can realistically end the weekend in third place.
Ferrari has shown that they cannot be counted out yet. Leclerc’s performances recently have been very impressive, especially when he was comfortably fourth at Portimao. Ferrari are 33 points off third place, but with five races to go, anything can come with the red team.
Giovinazzi and Raikkonen Stay in 2021
Antonio Giovinazzi and Kimi Raikkonen will stay with Alfa Romeo for the 3rd consecutive year. It was just a matter of finalising the contract with Raikkonen and he also has a great relationship with his teammate and works very well with the team.
However, one seat in Alfa Romeo is assigned to Ferrari because of their close relationship with Scuderia. Now that Giovinazzi, who was a runner-up for that seat, signed another year with Alfa Romeo, Ferrari has to consider what they want to do with Mick Schumacher. The young talent has exceeded in Formula 2 and has a great following because of his dad being a legendary F1 driver. However, it looks like Ferrari has still not decided about the young German.
Giulio’s Predictions for the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix
Lewis Hamilton is undoubtedly the favourite for Imola after his record-breaking performance in Portimao. He secured his 92nd win, making him the most successful driver of all time. His team mate Bottas has been steadily improving.
Weather forecast predictions
This weekend the Imola Circuit hosts their first race in over a decade and currently, the weather will be sunny with 18 degrees celcius with very few clouds and very light wind.
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