What did we say goodbye to in 2021?

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The new Formula 1 season will start in Bahrain in just over two months. The much discussed regulations will apply in the new season and a number of things will change. GPFans is looking at a number of parts that we will not see again in 2022.

From next season we will have to deal with new Formula 1 cars. These should ensure that there is a more competitive starting field, but also that cars can follow each other better. By choosing the new car, we also say goodbye to the Formula 1 cars that were introduced in 2017.

2017 cars

The Formula 1 car as we know it today was introduced in 2017. The philosophy was to increase downforce and grip and the cars grew in size. An adverse side effect was the ‘dirty-air’ of the cars. As a result, the drivers can’t follow each other well and they lose almost 46 percent of the downforce the moment they drive 10 meters behind a competitor. The bigger cars with more grip provided the fastest lap times ever in qualifying. At the end of 2021 we said goodbye to the cars, which were very fast but difficult to race.

Williams FW40

Farewell Raikkönen

We will not see Kimi Räikkönen again next season. The stoic Finn has been racing around in the sport for about twenty years and even managed to take the world title in 2007. After 349 race starts, the single world champion thought it was a good time and hung up his helmet. For the past three seasons, Räikkönen drove around Alfa Romeo, where he could fight for points in midfield. Last year, teammate Antonio Giovinazzi also came closer to the level of the Finn and with the departure of Räikkönen, the sport says goodbye to one of the most popular drivers.

Formula E Adventure Giovinazzi

Alfa Romeo will not only see leader Räikkönen leave, Giovinazzi will no longer drive for the team. Halfway through the season, it was announced that Guanyu has signed Zhou for years to come. It means a huge opportunity for Formula 1 to get a foothold in China. Giovinazzi was not so happy to lose his seat. He felt that big money had become too important in sports. He was referring to the fact that Zhou may have been mainly brought in to grow Alfa Romeo in China. For the Italian himself, a Formula E adventure lies ahead. With the team of Dragon Penske he will show what he can do. He will also be part of the test driver for the Ferrari team next season, along with Mick Schumacher.

Rubber

Not only will the cars look different next season, the tires will also change. The current 13-inch versions are making way for the 18-inch tires. Pirelli held a few more test days after the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix to obtain as much data as possible on the behavior of the rubber. The 18-inch tires will also feature larger rims, which will significantly change the look of the rubber.

Lando Norris, 18-inch tires

Honda

The departure of Honda is also officially a fact next season. The Japanese had a turbulent return to Formula 1. Honda became the engine supplier to McLaren in 2015. However, it was not a happy marriage. After three years of muddling through with the team, it was time for a change and Honda teamed up with Toro Rosso. That cooperation went a lot better and the engine manufacturer got the performance, but also the reliability in order. That development ensured that Red Bull Racing was also provided with Honda power sources. That marriage culminated in the world title for Max Verstappen in 2021.

Max Verstappen Abu Dhabi

It would be Honda’s last achievement in Formula 1 for the time being. The Japanese brand wants to focus on the electric car market and, according to the car manufacturer, Formula 1 does not fit in with that. It is not the first time Honda has said goodbye to Formula 1 and in 2026, when the new engine regulations come into effect, it would not surprise anyone if the Japanese make a comeback.

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