The grid for the 2023 F1 Dutch GP is set after a spectacular qualifying session. Even though the races have not been as stunning, the qualifying sessions have certainly had a level of competitiveness to them. The one in Zandvoort was no different in that case.
Max Verstappen will start the race on pole position with Lando Norris right alongside him. Having said that, what can we really expect from the race on Sunday? Let’s find out as we take a look at the predictions for the 2023 F1 Dutch GP.
#1. Max Verstappen win the 2023 F1 Dutch GP
If only the McLaren boys had been able to find a laptime good enough to challenge Max Verstappen and even beat him. If they had done that, then the race could have looked a bit different. The long runs between Verstappen and the rest were not separated by much.
If Lando Norris/Oscar Piastri had out-qualified Verstappen, then we would have been looking at a race where strategy plays a major role and the Dutch driver would have been forced to do the bulk of the work on track. Well, that has not happened, Verstappen is starting the race in pole position and it’s going to take a brave man to bet against him for the 2023 F1 Dutch GP.
#2. The race is going to feature a few stoppages
What has become quite clear about the track surface in Zandvoort is that the excessive rain has led to slippery conditions. The track is unforgiving in nature and this is exactly what has led to multiple crashes over the weekend. Even though rain is expected during the 2023 F1 Dutch GP on Sunday, expect a few stoppages to spice things up during the race.
#3. Alex Albon will drop down the order in the race
Alex Albon’s qualifying deserves a lot of credit and while the Williams driver has certainly made critics eat their words a few times this weekend, it’s hard to see him defend his very high grid position in the 2023 F1 Dutch GP. The driver starts the race on the second row of the grid and he is going to prove to be a thorn in the side of many that are making their way through the field.
This was an impressive qualifying performance from Albon but it will be hard to replicate the same result in the main race.
#4. Neither Lewis Hamilton nor Charles Leclerc make it to the top 5
Charles Leclerc will be starting the race in P9 while Lewis Hamilton had a disappointing qualifying session and will be starting the race outside of the top 10. With Ferrari‘s faltering long-run pace compared to its competition and the track’s narrow nature making it hard to pull off overtakes, the 2023 F1 Dutch GP is going to be a tough one for both of these drivers.
In all likelihood, a top 5 finish looks out of reach as there are far too many fast cars starting the race in better positions.
#5. No podium finish for Sergio Perez at the 2023 F1 Dutch GP
Sergio Perez will start the race outside of the top 5 after another disappointing qualifying session. In all of this, while the questions continue to grow, it’s hard to see the driver finding himself in a position where he can challenge for the podium.
He’s starting too far behind and when that happens on a track like Zandvoot, unless your strategy is spot on and you’re very lucky, you’re not finishing on the podium. This is where Perez finds himself at the 2023 F1 Dutch GP, a podium looks unlikely for the Mexican as pressure continues to mount.