- What time is the Dutch GP? And what time is qualifying?
- What’s the weather going to be like?
- Where is the Dutch GP taking place?
- How many laps is the Dutch GP?
- Who are the favourites for the Dutch GP?
- How can I watch the Dutch GP?
- What’s the Top Gear view on the Dutch GP?
F1 visits the home of world champion Max Verstappen this weekend. Expect much orange
The Dutch Grand Prix takes place at Zandvoort this weekend, where championship leader and home favourite Max Verstappen will likely be greeted by a sea of raucous, orange-clad fans.
It’ll be a sight to behold for sure, and if you don’t believe us you only need to look at the pictures from last year, when Verstappen took the chequered flag for Red Bull in the first edition of the Dutch GP since 1985. Cue smoke and flares.
Returning as world champion, Max enjoys a huge 93-point lead over teammate Max Verstappen, while the title challenge of Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc has all but evaporated a further five points further back. There are eight races left this season and it’s now a case of when, not if, Verstappen claims his second crown.
World championship battle aside, there’s still lots to talk about in the world of F1: we should find out soon which of Alpine or McLaren has succeeded in their contractual claims to the services of Oscar Piastri for 2023. Remember, the Alpine reserve driver dramatically took to social media last month to deny that he’d be driving for the French brand next year. Awkward.
Then there’s the future of Daniel Ricciairdo – departing McLaren after two tough seasons – and a handful of other race seats to sort out. Where will Mick Schumacher, Guanyu Zhou and Nicholas Latifi end up?
Opinion: Verstappen and Red Bull stand above everyone in F1
And don’t forget to keep an eye on the constructors’ standings too: this is what dictates the prize money at the end of the year, and a strong finish to the campaign will be vital to those outside the top three.
Bring it on.
What time is the Dutch GP? And what time is qualifying?
If you’re watching from the UK, the first practice session gets underway at 11.30 on Friday 2 September, with a second session following afterwards at 3pm. The final practice session begins at 11am on Saturday 3 September, followed by qualifying at 2pm sharp.
The Dutch GP itself will be held on Sunday 4 September, with lights out at 2pm. So make sure you’ve had lunch and been to the loo before then.
What’s the weather going to be like?
Good question. We had hoped for a bit of rain to make the twisty, challenging Zandvoort track that little bit harder, but by all accounts it’ll be a dry weekend throughout practice, quali and the grand prix. Highs of 24 degrees celsius are forecast on race day.
Where is the Dutch GP taking place?
The Dutch Grand Prix will be held at Zandvoort, a circuit on the coast of the Netherlands barely 20km from the centre of Amsterdam. Zandvoort used to be a mainstay of the F1 calendar in the Sixties and Seventies, but it dropped off the schedule in 1985 and didn’t return until major upgrades and investment made a return viable last season. You can bet your bottom Euro that demand to see a Dutchman winning in F1 played a big part in that return, too.
How many laps is the Dutch GP?
The Dutch GP is 72 laps long. Sounds like a lot, but then you have to consider that the track is one of the shortest on the 2022 calendar at 4.259km (2.646mi). A standard grand prix distance is 300km, so if you do the maths… it all checks out. Trust us.
Max Verstappen qualified on pole last year with a time of 1:08.885, although Lewis Hamilton grabbed the bonus point for setting the fastest lap of the race with a 1:11.097. The total race time 12 months ago was almost 90 minutes exactly, so expect something similar on Sunday.
Who are the favourites for the Dutch GP?
Depends what you mean. If you mean ‘Who is the favourite with the fans?’, it’s Max Verstappen. But if you mean ‘Who is the favourite for victory?’, then it’s… Max Verstappen. The Dutchman has won nine of the 14 races so far in 2022 despite occasional stiff competition from Ferrari and Charles Leclerc, who has managed three wins. The only other drivers to have won grands prix in 2022 are their teammates, Sergio Perez and Carlos Sainz.
We’d love to say that this is the weekend that Mercedes finally catch up, and although the team reckons this 14-corner circuit will be better suited to its car than Spa was last weekend, the fact is the reigning constructors’ champions have only shown flashes of pace all year. The safe money says Lewis Hamilton and George Russell might grab a podium if others are unfortunate on race day.
How can I watch the Dutch GP?
British fans have two options: watch the Dutch Grand Prix on Sky Sports live, or subscribe to Now TV and stream Sky’s dedicated F1 channel that way. Failing that, Channel 4 will broadcast free-to-air highlights over the weekend: qualifying highlights start at 6.30pm on Saturday, and race highlights begin at the same time on Sunday.
If you’re not fussed about visual stimulation, you could always tune in on the airwaves instead. BBC Radio 5 Live Sports Extra will have commentary from 2pm on race day.
What’s the Top Gear view on the Dutch GP?
Upon the return of the Dutch GP last year, we feared that the twisty circuit – which features two incredible banked corners – would be brilliant to watch in qualifying but dull as dishwater in the race with not much room for overtaking. However, it transpired that the main straight is just about long enough to complete overtakes, and this year’s new generation of racier cars should mean there are more opportunities for wheel-to-wheel moves than before.
And as an event as a whole, the Dutch fans are incredibly passionate and the atmosphere last year was incredible. F1 needs more races like that.