By Vlad Roman,
General Manager, Smart Games

We are close to the start of the 2024 Formula 1 world championship season, Sakhir will host the testing session, but until then let’s see who is competing with what…

McLaren retains 2023 drivers Lando Norris (24) and Oscar Piastri (22), the 2024 single-seater named MCL38 slightly inspired by Red Bull Racing’s design in black and orange is expected to make a more good this year especially since McLaren managed to steal two engineers from Red Bull Racing and Ferrari this winter. The front end is shorter and narrower, also in Red Bull style, as are new floor spoilers and a smaller engine cover.

The successor to the legendary Red Bull RB19 will be powered by a Red Bull Powertrains power unit with support from Honda. The driver line-up remains unchanged with Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez and team boss Christian Horner remains. The latter is currently being investigated for alleged misconduct. Horner attended the launch event, and the team seems to continue to support him. Visually, the single-seater for the 2024 season keeps the same already well-known graphics. Instead, we can see some differences in terms of aerodynamics, particularly visible in the sidepods, which have a new shape, as well as in the engine hood.

The new Mercedes car, called the W15 was presented at Silverstone, it replaces the W14 single-seater, the first of the Mercedes team’s hybrid era, but which did not bring any victories in 2023. Following the announcement of Hamilton’s move to Ferrari in 2025, Mercedes team director, Toto Wolff, present at the event with Hamilton, said: “It’s been a busy winter. This will be our last season with Lewis, so we’re keen to bring in a fast car.” Lewis Hamilton arrived at Mercedes in 2013, from the McLaren team, and won 6 of the 7 world titles in his record aboard the “Silver Arrows”, as the German manufacturer’s single-seaters are nicknamed.

Sauber broke the collaboration with Alfa Romeo at the end of 2023 which is why it brought a new color scheme for this season, the new single-seater C44 relies on a combination of green and black. The drivers of the Sauber team (official name Stake F1 Team) for this season are Valtteri Bottas and Zhou Guanyu. The new head of Audi, Gernot Döllner, confirms the plans publicly for the first time – Sauber will become the Audi factory team in 2026. Until then the Swiss team will use the Ferrari engine.

After a 2023 season in which it started on the right foot but fell off in performance towards the end of the year, Aston Martin hopes to impose itself more convincingly in the new 2024 season. Compared to last year’s single-seater, the new Aston Martin AMR24 brings slightly revised graphics, with exposed carbon fiber especially at the top of the sidepods. Like all of the team’s single-seaters since its return in 2021, the new AMR24 will have a Mercedes power unit behind it. This is the penultimate season with these engines, before Aston Martin switches to Honda engines from 2026. The driver line-up remains the same as in 2023, with double world champion Fernando Alonso and Lance Stroll. Also, the head of the team remains Mike Krack.

Alpha Tauri, following the partnership with the main sponsor Visa brought a new color scheme for 2024, but also a new official name for the team: Visa Cash App RB. The confirmed drivers for 2024 remain Daniel Ricciardo and Yuki Tsunoda while Liam Lawson will be the reserve driver for both Red Bull teams, the New Zealander has a strong chance of promotion after impressing in the 3 races he drove as Ricciardo’s replacement.
“We are in a privileged position where we have several great talents from the world of Red Bull at our disposal,” AlphaTauri’s new chief executive Peter Bayer said in a statement.
“Both Daniel and Yuki have not only demonstrated fantastic racing prowess, but are also fantastic global ambassadors for our team and our sport. Liam has thrust himself into the Formula 1 spotlight in just three races and I’m very happy that we can continue to prepare him for his future.”

Alpine has undoubtedly taken a step back, or even two, in terms of its performance. The Ocon-Gasly pairing, as expected, did not work well at all and there was friction on and off the track. All this, combined with a car that did not work on many circuits raised the tension and left the French in sixth place in the championship. A revolution is therefore urgently needed. The new single-seater of the French team is called A524 and relies, as in 2023, on a color scheme made up mainly of blue, pink and black.
“The A524’s approach was aggressive but deliberate in that we were creating a wider scope to add performance to the car,” says Matt Harman, Alpine technical director. “We really focused on learning and reacting to what we learned rather than outcomes. The project was bold, where we focused on making some concepts, which we aim to add to the car. We’ve built a solid platform to add performance when we can, and we’ve set goals to achieve them.”

Williams Racing has digitally unveiled its new Formula 1 car for the 2024 season. The FW46 brings a significant new approach to previous designs, with the car featuring a darker shade of blue that represents the team’s history of success in winning Formula 1 championships to date. Complementing the distinctive new aesthetic, the front of the car wears red and white stripes that reference the Williams team’s iconic brand. At the wheel, the Williams team will once again have Alex Albon, accompanied by the promising Logan Sargeant.

Haas were the first to publish images of the new single-seater called the VF-24. With the live presentation at Silverstone when Nico Hulkenberg took the new VF-24 out on the track, the new chassis and front end featuring a new airflow concept were noticed. In 2024, the drivers remain the same, i.e. Kevin Magnussen and Nico Hulkenberg. The same cannot be said about the head of the team, considering that Guenther Steiner resigned his place to be taken by Ayao Komatsu who stated “we are realistic, we don’t have high expectations, but the presentation of the new car at the opening of the season is an extraordinary moment”.

The Ferrari SF24 is an all-new car with which Ferrari leaves behind the basic concept it has raced with since the new regulations began in 2022. Carlos Sainz and Charles Leclerc will aim to close the huge gap to Red as much as possible Bull. The Austrians have won almost every race in 2023 and are heavy favorites again this year, but Ferrari and Mercedes are promising significant improvements. Until the arrival of Lewis Hamilton in 2025, the team is trying to close the gap with Red Bull in order to have a real shot at the title a year from now. “The SF-24 promises to be less sensitive and easier to handle, and that’s exactly what we pilots need to be able to handle. I expect a step forward in many ways and from what I could understand in the simulator I think we are where we want to be. The aim of this season is to always be at the top: I wish you many good races and to get victories again”, Leclerc said.

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