Five Things We Learnt From Drive to Survive - Drive to Survive S3 review

With a lot of issues discussed in this season, it gave fans a lot to think about, which will help them build more opinions on what to expect from the 2021 season.

After running a Netflix marathon yesterday morning (which I'm sure most F1 fans did), I am going to give you the five biggest takeaways that we will surely hear more about this year.

1. One of the top reasons why Haas opted for a rookie driver line-up

It is rare to see a Formula One team start a new season with two rookies in their cars, but Haas team principal Guenther Steiner took on the challenge. 

for the 2021 season, Haas will race with Mick Schumacher, the son of seven-time World Champion Michael Schumacher, and Russian rookie Nikita Mazepin.

Dropping French driver Romain Grosjean, who has raced for the American team for five years, and Kevin Magnussen, who filled the seat at Haas for four years, was no easy decision for Steiner. The financial struggles that the team has been experiencing forced him to look at bringing in funds from an outside source and so he was seeking to please sponsors in order to save the F1 team.

Steiner managed to secure a deal with German telecommunications providers 1&1 with the condition that Haas was to put a German driver in the car. With Alfa Romeo putting pressure on the Italian, Haas managed to secure a deal with the 2020 Formula Two Champion. Thanks to that, Haas will not only be securing a good pool of money for 2021 but also got the Schumacher name back in Formula One.

Steiner also managed to pen a deal with Russian Nikita Mazepin, whose father Dmitry Mazepin owns Uralkali, a company that produces and exports potash fertilizer. Offering a sponsorship deal to the American team, Steiner saw an opportunity which he could not miss to keep Haas in Formula One.

Despite these decisions having been based mostly on financial gain, it was sad to see two great drivers leave the F1 paddock, Haas needed to move forward with it because after all Formula One has become a business and they cannot risk their team going into administration.

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2. Slim chance at Red Bull for Pierre Gasly.

Alpha Tauri, who was previously known as Toro Rosso, is mainly in Formula One thanks to the relationship with Red Bull. The sister team prepares young Red Bull academy drivers so that, eventually, they may fill the Red Bull seat.

After being demoted from Red Bull to Toro Rosso in 2019, French driver Pierre Gasly has shown better results bringing home a few podiums and also a win to Alpha Tauri in Monza. Meanwhile, Alex Albon struggled under the Red Bull pressure and lost his seat to Mexican Sergio Perez.

Despite the demotion and the success that he is having with the Alpha Tauri, Gasly still seeks to join one of the biggest names in Formula One, Red Bull. He admitted though, that achieving a win, with a car that is restricted to the mid-table, was a dream that he would not have imagined.

On the other hand, Christian Horner admitted that so far Red Bull has not considered promoting the French driver, in fact, they did not take the chance for 2021. 

So this raises the question, will Pierre Gasly go on to join Red Bull? Or will he maybe join another big name such as Mercedes or Ferrari? Could he potentially stay with Alpha Tauri and give them more to celebrate and take the team to a whole other level.

The jury is still out about what will happen with Gasly and Red Bull, because anyone who has already seen the series knows that there are way too many ongoing talks happening in the paddock, which the fans are not wary of during the season. Trying to discuss such a situation will only create rumors, so I guess we have to wait and see where Gasly will be heading.

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3. Vettel, Perez, and Bottas need more backing up from their teams

It has been evident that Ferrari's 2019 power unit situation affected them drastically in 2020. Despite this situation, any Formula One spectator can admit that Sebastian Vettel is not someone who finishes in P17 in a Qualifying session, no matter how bad the car is.

Seemingly not having a say or not even being considered for another year had hurt Vettel and it can be said that it has left him unmotivated for the 2020 season. On one side you had Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto saying that the team is united and on the other Vettel appeared to be completely alienated.

Anyone can say, that the situation with Vettel could have been handled better, and the same goes for Sergio Perez. The Mexican admitted that he was not even expecting the decision to drop him from Racing Point, especially with the results that he had been giving them. 

This brings out quite a negative side to this sport, as any Formula One fan has a great deal of respect for Sebastian Vettel and Sergio Perez as they are two of the best and most experienced drivers on the grid.

To add to the list, although Valtteri Bottas still remains in his Mercedes seat, he may need more backing going into the 2021 season. It is easy to look down upon the Finn due to his perceived lack of results against his teammate Sir Lewis Hamilton, however, it became clear early on in the series that he may need more support.

It is no secret that he has been told many times to let Hamilton through, even when he had a chance himself of winning the race. The series highlighted Sochi 2018 and compared it to that of 2020, where Bottas acted selfishly in order to get a win which he truly deserved.

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4. Aston Martin is not the team to mess with and they are set to display exciting racing

Aston Martin is back in Formula One as they replace Racing Point's name. In 2020, one of the top controversial points was the RP20, which was nicknamed the 'Pink Mercedes'. 

Mercedes had sold some information regarding some braking ducts and car parts to Racing Point. Renault protested that car was illegal and with them joined McLaren, Ferrari, Haas, and Williams. The FIA Rules state that no team should share information about a list of components and must create their original owner. Racing Point argued that they had contacted Mercedes back in 2019 when the brake ducts were not on the list of non-mentionable components, and so the car was in fact legal.

Although many disagreed with FIA's decision to let Racing Point race with the car, in the end, the car was cleared to race and the team owner Lawrence Stroll was determined to win even more.

This could be one of the reasons why he decided to gain a partnership with Aston Martin. Showing the behind-the-scenes work at Racing Point and the determination and rivalry that they had built with McLaren and Renault, who are now called Alpine.

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5. Despite the rivalry, Formula One is just one big family

Things got heated now and then, but despite the arguments, protesting and competition, Formula One is still a family.

It was clearly shown in the series the great relationship that the teams have between each other, despite the rival banter that they sometimes hit one another with.

I'm sure that I was not the only one happy to see the great relationship that Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff and Christian Horner had with one another. Horner even told Wolff that he was going to report their DAS System to the FIA officials. Normally when someone tries to place an appeal, they do it secretly, but in my opinion, it was an act of respect that Horner let Wolff know.

And let's not forget the small clip where they showed Sergio Perez offering Guenther Steiner a lift in order to help him to travel from America to Europe and other continents. 

Covid-19 is the only thing in the way that is stopping Daniel Ricciardo from taking former Renault team principal Cyril Abiteboul from getting a tattoo, as part of a bet where they agreed that if the Australian gets a podium, the Frenchman would need to get a tattoo.

And when Romain Grosjean suffered that terrible fire accident in Bahrain, without a doubt everyone was worried and put Grosjean's safety first before racing and hunt for the title. 

Although Formula One is a wider political and personal sport, it is also a family, and at the end of the day, everyone supports each other which is something very admirable. A reason which probably everyone holds for loving Formula One, the feeling of belonging.