Formula 1 in Qatar - the race, teams and drivers

Formula 1 in Qatar - the race, teams and drivers

By QLSports

The excitement among motorsports fans in Qatar is at an all-time high as the country sets out to host its first-ever Formula 1 race, the FORMULA 1 OOREDOO QATAR GRAND PRIX 2021, this weekend.

Here’s a quick explainer about what the race is all about including a brief description of the teams and drivers.

Formula 1

Formula 1 is a motorsport discipline sanctioned by the FIA (The International Automobile Federation) and owned by the Formula One Group.

After its inaugural season in 1950, a world championship has been contested by drivers every year.

The competition is based on Grands Prix, races involving single-seater cars contested on permanently closed road circuits, but sometimes taking place in a town, such as in Monaco, Singapore, and Baku.

Qatar is hosting it for the first time on November 19-21.


A total of 10 teams take part in the Formula 1 (Mercedes, Red Bull Racing, McLaren, Ferrari, Alpine, AlphaTauri, Aston Martin, Williams, Alfa Romeo Racing and Haas F1 Team)

Number of Drivers: 20

Defending champion: Lewis Hamilton

Constructors' champion: Germany Mercedes

Most valuable Formula 1 team brand: Ferrari

Value of the Ferrari Formula 1 team brand: 1.35bn USD



Drivers: Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas 

The Mercedes Team has defending champion Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas in the drivers' seat. The Briton has scored six of his seven title triumphs with the Silver Arrows while Finland's Bottas is on his fifth season with the team.

Hamilton is currently No.2 in the Driver Standings this season with six wins and 318.5 points ahead of the Formula 1 Ooredoo Qatar Grand Prix while Bottas is third with 203 points and one win.


Drivers: Sergio Perez and Max Verstappen 

Red Bull Racing, competing as Red Bull Racing Honda, also simply known as Red Bull or RBR, is a Formula One racing team, racing a Honda-powered car under an Austrian license and based in the United Kingdom. 

Verstappen is having one of his best seasons ever as he currently leads the standings with nine wins and 332.5 points while his Mexican teammate his fourth with 178 points and one win.

Verstappen is in his fifth full season at the team.


Drivers: Daniel Ricciardo and Lando Norris 

After a storming 2020 season, Daniel Ricciardo moves to McLaren from Renault, joining Lando Norris as the young Briton enters his third season in the sport. This year, McLaren returned to Mercedes power for the first time since 2014.

British Norris is currently No. 5 on the standings with 151 points while Italian-Australian Ricciardo has is currently eight on the table with 105 points.


Drivers: Sebastian Vettel and Lance Stroll 

Aston Martin returned as a works team to Formula 1 for the first time since 1960, with four-time champion Germany's Vettel racing alongside Canadian Stroll at the team formerly known as Racing Point.

Vettel is currently 12th on the standings with 42 points while Stroll is 13th with 26 points.


Drivers: Fernando Alonso and Esteban Ocon 

Renault rebranded to become Alpine for the 2021 season. The squad welcomed back two-time champion Alonso of Spain after two seasons out of the sport – the 40-year-old Spaniard is partnering Frenchman Ocon and they are currently 10th and 11th respectively in the standings. While Alonso has garnered 62 points, his teammate currently has 50.


Drivers: Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz 

Sainz became the newest driver to don the famous Rosso Corsa overalls in 2021, joining Ferrari alongside incumbent driver Leclerc, now in his third season with the Scuderia. 

Ferrari is the most successful F1 engine manufacturer, with 239 wins having achieved a single non-Ferrari victory with Scuderia Toro Rosso at the 2008 Italian Grand Prix, as well as one Ferrari privateer win at the 1961 French Grand Prix.

Leclerc is currently 6th in the standings with 148 points while Sainz is 7th with 139.5 points.


Drivers: Pierre Gasly and Yuki Tsunoda 

Gasly is paired at AlphaTauri with F1 rookie Tsunoda for 2021, the Japanese driver stepping up from Formula 2 to join the Italian team. The team is one of the two Formula One constructors owned by Austrian beverage company Red Bull, the other being Red Bull Racing. 

Frenchman Gasly stands at No. 9 in the current rankings with 92 points while Tsunoda is 14th with 20 points. 


Drivers: Kimi Räikkönen, Antonio Giovinazzi and Robert Kubica. 

Alfa Romeo's Giovinazzi and Raikkonen are now in their third season together at the team based in Hinwil, Switzerland.

The team founded in 1970 by Peter Sauber, who progressed through hillclimbing and the World Sportscar Championship to reach Formula One in 1993, is currently 9th in the Constructor Standings.

Italian Giovinazzi is 18th on the Driver Standings with 1 point. However, his teammate is 16th with 10 points.

Kubica replaced Räikkönen at the Dutch and Italian Grands Prix in 2021, making the AlfaRomeo the only team with three drivers this season. Kubica is 20th in the Driver Standings with zero points and no win nor podium finish.

  1. HAAS

Drivers: Nikita Mazepin and Mick Schumacher 

Haas fielded an all-new, all-rookie line-up for 2021. Formula 2 graduates Nikita Mazepin and Mick Schumacher, son of seven-time champion Michael, are the new drivers for the team.

Haas, racing as Haas Ferrari, are at the bottom of the ladder in the current Constructor Standings.

Germany's Schumacher is currently 19th in the Driver Standings with zero points while his Russian teammate is 21st with zero points as well.


Drivers: Nicholas Latifi and George Russell 

Latifi and Russell are in their second season at the now Dorilton Capital-owned Williams team, with 2021 marking the first season without a member of the Williams family in a senior position at the squad.

The team is eighth on the Constructor Standing and Russell and Latifi are currently 15th and 17th respectively on the Driver Standings. Briton Russell has 16 points and 1 podium finish while Canadian Latifi has 7 points.

Formula 1 Ooredoo Qatar Grand Prix 2021

This will be the first time Qatar hosts a Formula 1 race. The race weekend will take place from November 19-21, 2021 at the iconic 5.38-km Losail Circuit Sports Club (LCSC).

The weekend will begin with two practice sessions on Friday from 13:30-14:30 and 17:00-18:00, followed by a single practice session on Saturday at 14:00-15:00 and qualifying at 17:00-18:00.

The Grand Prix will take place on Sunday, with lights out scheduled for 17:00 local time.

The race will return to Qatar in 2023 under a 10-year agreement until 2032.


Limited tickets are available, however, some zones have sold-out already.

Visit the ticketing page to get your tickets. Ticket prices start from QAR1000.

Food and Beverage

There will be a variety of food and beverage options to accommodate a range of personal preferences.

F1 fanzone

There will be a fanzone located behind the Main Grandstand. This will be accessible to customers who hold tickets for the Main Grandstand: Zone A, Zone B, Zone C, as well as the North Grandstand.  Losail Club and Corner 10 Grandstand will have their own smaller Fanzones with food, beverages and a range of activities.

Proof of a COVID-19 vaccination

Any person who is fully vaccinated, and fourteen days have passed between their final dose of the vaccine and the beginning of the event, may attend. Proof of vaccination will need to be shown when entering the event. This can be done by:

•    Showing the golden frame around the Green QR code on the Ehteraz Application. 

•    Showing an official vaccination certificate from Qatar, or from the country where the vaccination was received. 

•    Children under 12 years old who are not eligible to receive the vaccine in Qatar are required to show a negative Rapid Antigen Test or a negative PCR test result from a MOPH approved health center. This test needs to be taken within 24 hours of entering the event grounds. If you have recovered from COVID-19 within one year of the start of the event, you can also gain access by showing proof of this in the form of an official certificate.

Those visiting from outside of Qatar must also adhere to the country’s entry requirements found on the Ministry of Public Health’s website.

Visit Qatar has also developed a helpful guide for visitors to understand their travel requirements for entry into the State of Qatar.


Free parking will be available, but it will be limited. Ticket holders are encouraged to make use of public transport and to car-pool as much as possible. Arrive early as traffic congestion is expected on the roads surrounding the circuit and in the parking areas.


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Cover Image Credit: Mikhail Kolesnikov
Inline Images Credit: Formula 1
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