Formula One is back on track for the second week in a row, this time taking on the Zandvoort circuit for the first time since 1985.

It’s been 36 years since Formula 1 cars raced at Zandvoort. The last time a field of F1 cars raced here for the Dutch Grand Prix, names like Prost, Senna and Mansell took part, and Martin Brundle was in a race car rather than a broadcast booth.

F1 is back to the Dutch Grand Prix this weekend, hoping to put forth an exciting race after a disappointing Belgian Grand Prix. The race at Spa Francorchamps was effectively cancelled due to heavy rain, though the decision was made to run the minimum number of laps required behind a safety car to have the Belgian event classified as a race.

The Zandvoort circuit was updated in 2019 to accommodate F1’s return in 2020. The 2020 race was cancelled, but this year the updated circuit includes the dramatic banking of the Arie Luyendijk corner. The corner was understood to be sufficiently banked to allow DRS, though the decision has since been made to not allow DRS through this corner.

Max Verstappen took pole and the win at Spa Francorchamps, with George Russell and Lewis Hamilton claiming the other two podium spots. The controversial points awarded for the Belgian Grand Prix narrowed the drivers' championship to just three points.

A win at his home race would put Verstappen back in the lead of the drivers' standings, and Dutch fans will be out in huge numbers to cheer on that result. His teammate Sergio Perez will be looking to return to form after an accident at Spa happened before he could even get to his grid spot left him out of the points. Thankfully Valtteri Bottas also finished outside of the points at Spa, so the constructors’ championship is still a tight battle with Mercedes holding a seven point lead.

The layout of the Zandvoort circuit likely won’t allow for much overtaking, and the weather is predicted to be mainly sunny for the weekend, so the pole sitter will be a heavy favourite to maintain his lead until the end of the race.

Image credits from our good friends and RD community members from F1 RaceReporter

Give us your prediction for the 2021 Dutch Grand Prix in the comments below. Who do you think will take victory here, or who could surprise us with their result?
About author
Mike Smith
I have been obsessed with sim racing and racing games since the 1980's. My first taste of live auto racing was in 1988, and I couldn't get enough ever since. Lead writer for RaceDepartment, and owner of SimRacing604 and its YouTube channel. Favourite sims include Assetto Corsa Competizione, Assetto Corsa, rFactor 2, Automobilista 2, DiRT Rally 2 - On Twitter as @simracing604

Comments

I'm curious to see how this race will turn out. I expect a rather dull affair... It's a twisty, narrow track with few overtaking opportunities and one short straight. It looks like the Hungaroring all over again. However, sometimes we anticipate a boring race and we get something completely different. Fingers crossed.
 
Charlie Lockwood
Premium
There would be something fitting about the Netherlands getting its first home winner on the return of the Dutch Grand Prix.

I back Max to win and take the championship lead, too much positive momentum in his favour in my opinion.

12 races into the season and he's the only driver to always finish top 2 excluding mechanical failures and accidents caused by other drivers.

I know a lot of people are expecting a procession, but with short run off zones and gravel aplenty I wouldn't be surprised to see safety cars and mixed strategies.
 
Sooooo only Max fans ?!! ..... Probably the only thing interesting this weekend :roflmao:


Joke aside I think we are all curious about this :coffee: The new paved sections look awesome !! They should have repaved everything from the start IMO :laugh:
 
Hope its not wet like last weekend's F1 (What a Disappointing Race That Was)
 
Slapped
Premium
So, who's in the picture then?

Normally I expect to see an F1 car as the headline picture of an F1 news thread, but this time we've got a random group of guys in the spectator stands, whom I suspect is part of the Dutch contingent of this forum. Am I right?
 
So, who's in the picture then?

Normally I expect to see an F1 car as the headline picture of an F1 news thread, but this time we've got a random group of guys in the spectator stands, whom I suspect is part of the Dutch contingent of this forum. Am I right?
At first glance, I thought the guy on the left was Niels.
 
Bram Hengeveld
Staff
Premium
Thanks. I thought one of the guys might be you.

Ahh well, there goes my identity theft project for this evening.



Just kidding - really just kidding ;)
That's the funny thing mr. Kojak. I have been to literally almost any form of motorsport in my life but never to Formula 1. :)
 
Slapped
Premium
That's the funny thing mr. Kojak. I have been to literally almost any form of motorsport in my life but never to Formula 1. :)
And the funny thing is, Mr RD, is that the only motorsport event I ever attended was a stock car event at Gt Yarmouth back when I was a low milage teenager. I went to Snetterton once, but it was market day, so no racing.
 
Bram Hengeveld
Staff
Premium
Maybe you can join us this year at the Simracing Expo @Slapped where the Historic 24 Hours race of the Nurburgring takes place at the same time :)
 
Really looking forward to this Zandvoort GP weekend. All new also to the racers and their teams. All preparations based on digital models. but how will the cars and especially the tires perform in real life. E.g. What about the dune sand blowing on the track in combination with the tires? Red hot and slippery! Battle time.

Hopefully all goes well both on track and for the thousands and thousands coming to Zandvoort. Make it a party we will all enjoy and remember. BTW if you're looking for me I wear an orange shirt :p
 

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