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The 2021 French Grand Prix (officially the Formula 1 Emirates Grand Prix de France 2021) was the seventh race of the 2021 FIA Formula One World Championship, held at the Circuit Paul Ricard in Le Castellet, France between June 18 and June 20 2021.

Max Verstappen took pole position and won the race for Red Bull, despite running wide at the first lap allowing Lewis Hamilton into the lead, but retook the lead with two laps remaining on a two-stop strategy. Hamilton came in second while Sergio Pérez passed Valtteri Bottas for third as Mercedes had to deal with tire wear issues.


Background[]

The previous running of the French Grand Prix was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but the race was reinstated into the 2021 calendar[1]. The race was then brought forward a week earlier from its scheduled date, following the cancelation of the Turkish Grand Prix that was supposed to replace the canceled Canadian Grand Prix[2].

Heading into the race weekend, Max Verstappen retained his lead ahead of rival Lewis Hamilton by 4 points, both failing to score from the previous round in Baku. Sergio Perez' win with Mercedes' failure to score extended Red Bull's lead to 26 points.

A major topic discussed were the tire failures that caused Lance Stroll and Verstappen's retirements during the Baku round. Pirelli has launched an investigation and found that they were due to a "circumferential break on the inner sidewall which can be related to the running conditions of the tire". Mercedes also made modifications to the steering following Hamilton's mistake on pressing the "magic button" during the race restart to prevent a repeat.

Ahead of the race weekend, it was announced that Romain Grosjean would be participating in a test session for Mercedes on June 29. The former Haas driver, who was unable to race for the last two races of 2020 following a horrific crash at the 2020 Bahrain Grand Prix, would also be conducting some demonstration laps with the team as well on the race weekend[3]. The rescheduling of the calendar meant that Grosjean would be unable to perform the demonstration laps as it clashes with an IndyCar weekend, but Mercedes have stated that the test would go ahead as planned on the date[4]. The test session was postponed yet again due to travel restrictions.

Ahead of the weekend it was also announced that Esteban Ocon had extended his contract with Alpine for another three years until 2024. Hamilton's team mate Valtteri Bottas has again rubbished rumors that he would be replaced mid-season. McLaren meanwhile ran tributes on their cars to honor longtime shareholder Mansour Ojjeh, who passed away the morning of the previous round.

Entry List[]

The full entry list for the 2021 French Grand Prix is outlined below:

No. Driver Entrant Constructor Chassis Engine Model Tyre
3 Australia Daniel Ricciardo United Kingdom McLaren F1 Team McLaren MCL35M Mercedes F1 M12 1.6 V6t P
4 United Kingdom Lando Norris United Kingdom McLaren F1 Team McLaren MCL35M Mercedes F1 M12 1.6 V6t P
5 Germany Sebastian Vettel United Kingdom Aston Martin Cognizant F1 Team Aston Martin AMR21 Mercedes F1 M12 1.6 V6t P
6 Canada Nicholas Latifi United Kingdom Williams Racing Williams FW43B Mercedes F1 M12 1.6 V6t P
7 Finland Kimi Räikkönen Switzerland Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN Alfa Romeo C41 Ferrari 065/6 1.6 V6t P
9 Russian Automobile Federation Nikita Mazepin United States Uralkali Haas F1 Team Haas VF-21 Ferrari 065/6 1.6 V6t P
10 France Pierre Gasly Italy Scuderia AlphaTauri Honda AlphaTauri AT02 Honda RA621H 1.6 V6t P
11 Mexico Sergio Pérez Austria Red Bull Racing Red Bull RB16B Honda RA621H 1.6 V6t P
14 Spain Fernando Alonso France Alpine F1 Team Alpine A521 Renault E-Tech 20B 1.6 V6t P
16 Monaco Charles Leclerc Italy Scuderia Ferrari Ferrari SF21 Ferrari 065/6 1.6 V6t P
18 Canada Lance Stroll United Kingdom Aston Martin Cognizant F1 Team Aston Martin AMR21 Mercedes F1 M12 1.6 V6t P
22 Japan Yuki Tsunoda Italy Scuderia AlphaTauri Honda AlphaTauri AT02 Honda RA621H 1.6 V6t P
31 France Esteban Ocon France Alpine F1 Team Alpine A521 Renault E-Tech 20B 1.6 V6t P
33 Netherlands Max Verstappen Austria Red Bull Racing Red Bull RB16B Honda RA621H 1.6 V6t P
44 United Kingdom Lewis Hamilton Germany Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team Mercedes F1 W12 Mercedes F1 M12 1.6 V6t P
47 Germany Mick Schumacher United States Uralkali Haas F1 Team Haas VF-21 Ferrari 065/6 1.6 V6t P
55 Spain Carlos Sainz, Jr. Italy Scuderia Ferrari Ferrari SF21 Ferrari 065/6 1.6 V6t P
63 United Kingdom George Russell United Kingdom Williams Racing Williams FW43B Mercedes F1 M12 1.6 V6t P
77 Finland Valtteri Bottas Germany Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team Mercedes F1 W12 Mercedes F1 M12 1.6 V6t P
99 Italy Antonio Giovinazzi Switzerland Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN Alfa Romeo C41 Ferrari 065/6 1.6 V6t P
Test Drivers for Practice Sessions Only
45 Israel Roy Nissany United Kingdom Williams Racing Williams FW43B Mercedes F1 M12 1.6 V6t P
Source:[5]

Practice Overview[]

Qualifying[]

Q1[]

Tsunoda spun and crashed into the wall in Turn 1, stopping the session just minutes after it started. The session ended early with Schumacher, who had managed to qualify into Q2 for the first time in his career, spun and collided with the barriers at Turn 6. Tsunoda thus joined Latifi, Raikkonen, Mazepin and Stroll out of Q1, with Stroll failing to set a lap time due to Schumacher's crash, having his earlier run deleted for track limits violations.

Q2[]

Bottas ended the session fastest. Out in Q2 were Ocon, Vettel, Giovinazzi, Russell and Schumacher, who set no time due to his accident earlier.

Q3[]

Verstappen took his fifth career pole, with Hamilton and Bottas splitting him and Red Bull team-mate Perez.

Qualifying Results[]

The full qualifying results for the 2021 French Grand Prix are outlined below:

Pos. No. Driver Team Q1 Q2 Q3 Grid
Pos. Time Pos. Time Pos. Time
1 33 Netherlands Max Verstappen Austria Red Bull-Honda 1 1:31.001 4 1:31.080 1 1:29.990 1
2 44 United Kingdom Lewis Hamilton Germany Mercedes 2 1:31.237 2 1:30.788 2 1:30.248 2
3 77 Finland Valtteri Bottas Germany Mercedes 4 1:31.669 1 1:30.735 3 1:30.376 3
4 11 Mexico Sergio Pérez Austria Red Bull-Honda 3 1:31.560 3 1:30.971 4 1:30.445 4
5 55 Spain Carlos Sainz, Jr. Italy Ferrari 7 1:32.079 5 1:31.146 5 1:30.840 5
6 10 France Pierre Gasly Italy AlphaTauri-Honda 6 1:31.898 6 1:31.353 6 1:30.868 6
7 16 Monaco Charles Leclerc Italy Ferrari 12 1:32.209 9 1:31.567 7 1:30.987 7
8 4 United Kingdom Lando Norris United Kingdom McLaren-Mercedes 5 1:31.733 7 1:31.542 8 1:31.252 8
9 14 Spain Fernando Alonso France Alpine-Renault 10 1:32.158 8 1:31.549 9 1:31.340 9
10 3 Australia Daniel Ricciardo United Kingdom McLaren-Mercedes 11 1:32.181 10 1:31.615 10 1:31.382 10
11 31 France Esteban Ocon France Alpine-Renault 9 1:32.139 11 1:31.736 11
12 5 Germany Sebastian Vettel United Kingdom Aston Martin-Mercedes 8 1:32.132 12 1:31.767 12
13 99 Italy Antonio Giovinazzi Switzerland Alfa Romeo-Ferrari 13 1:32.722 13 1:31.813 13
14 63 United Kingdom George Russell United Kingdom Williams-Mercedes 15 1:33.060 14 1:32.065 14
15 47 Germany Mick Schumacher United States Haas-Ferrari 14 1:32.942 NC —* 15
16 6 Canada Nicholas Latifi United Kingdom Williams-Mercedes 16 1:33.062 16
17 7 Finland Kimi Räikkönen Switzerland Alfa Romeo-Ferrari 17 1:33.354 17
18 9 Russian Automobile Federation Nikita Mazepin United States Haas-Ferrari 18 1:33.554 18
107% time: 1:37.371
NC 18 Canada Lance Stroll United Kingdom Aston Martin-Mercedes NC 2:12.584 19
NC 22 Japan Yuki Tsunoda Italy AlphaTauri-Honda NC PL
Source:[6]
  • Bold indicates the fastest driver's time in each session.
  • * Schumacher did not set a lap time in Q2, following car damage after a collision at the end of Q1.
  • Stroll's initial lap time was deleted for track limits violations. He then failed to improve his lap time due to Schumacher's accident at the end of the session.
  • Tsunoda did not set a lap time after crashing his car before setting a lap time. He started the race from the pit lane after making a gearbox change.

Grid[]

Race[]

Report[]

Results[]

The full results for the 2021 French Grand Prix are outlined below:

Pos. No. Driver Constructor Laps Time/Retired Grid Points
1 33 Netherlands Max Verstappen Austria Red Bull-Honda 53 1:27:25.770 1 25
2 44 United Kingdom Lewis Hamilton Germany Mercedes 53 +2.904 2 18
3 11 Mexico Sergio Pérez Austria Red Bull-Honda 53 +8.811 4 15
4 77 Finland Valtteri Bottas Germany Mercedes 53 +14.618 3 12
5 4 United Kingdom Lando Norris United Kingdom McLaren-Mercedes 53 +1:04.032 8 10
6 3 Australia Daniel Ricciardo United Kingdom McLaren-Mercedes 53 +1:15.857 10 8
7 10 France Pierre Gasly Italy AlphaTauri-Honda 53 +1:16.596 6 6
8 14 Spain Fernando Alonso France Alpine-Renault 53 +1:17.695 9 4
9 5 Germany Sebastian Vettel United Kingdom Aston Martin-Mercedes 53 +1:19.666 12 2
10 18 Canada Lance Stroll United Kingdom Aston Martin-Mercedes 53 +1:31.946 19 1
11 55 Spain Carlos Sainz, Jr. Italy Ferrari 53 +1:39.337 5
12 63 United Kingdom George Russell United Kingdom Williams-Mercedes 52 +1 lap 14
13 22 Japan Yuki Tsunoda Italy AlphaTauri-Honda 52 +1 lap PL
14 31 France Esteban Ocon France Alpine-Renault 52 +1 lap 11
15 99 Italy Antonio Giovinazzi Switzerland Alfa Romeo-Ferrari 52 +1 lap 13
16 16 Monaco Charles Leclerc Italy Ferrari 52 +1 lap 7
17 7 Finland Kimi Räikkönen Switzerland Alfa Romeo-Ferrari 52 +1 lap 17
18 6 Canada Nicholas Latifi United Kingdom Williams-Mercedes 52 +1 lap 16
19 47 Germany Mick Schumacher United States Haas-Ferrari 52 +1 lap 15
20 9 Russian Automobile Federation Nikita Mazepin United States Haas-Ferrari 52 +1 lap 18
Source:

Milestones[]

  • Fifth career pole position, 13th career win and first hat trick for Max Verstappen.
  • 250th pole for a car running on Pirelli tires.

Standings[]

Verstappen extended his lead ahead of Hamilton to 12 points, with both title rivals having tied with the same amount of wins they had so far in the season. While Red Bull extended the constructors' championship lead from Mercedes by 11 points from the double podium, both Ferraris failed to score, hence McLaren retook third in the constructors' standings, while Bottas got back ahead of Leclerc.

Drivers' World Championship
Pos. Driver Pts +/-
1 Netherlands Max Verstappen 131
2 United Kingdom Lewis Hamilton 119
3 Mexico Sergio Pérez 84
4 United Kingdom Lando Norris 76
5 Finland Valtteri Bottas 59 ▲1
6 Monaco Charles Leclerc 52 ▼1
7 Spain Carlos Sainz, Jr. 42
8 France Pierre Gasly 37
9 Australia Daniel Ricciardo 34 ▲1
10 Germany Sebastian Vettel 30 ▼1
11 Spain Fernando Alonso 17
12 France Esteban Ocon 12
13 Canada Lance Stroll 10
14 Japan Yuki Tsunoda 8
15 Finland Kimi Räikkönen 1
16 Italy Antonio Giovinazzi 1
Constructors' World Championship
Pos. Team Pts +/-
1 Austria Red Bull-Honda 215
2 Germany Mercedes 178
3 United Kingdom McLaren-Mercedes 110 ▲1
4 Italy Ferrari 94 ▼1
5 Italy AlphaTauri-Honda 45
6 United Kingdom Aston Martin-Mercedes 40
7 France Alpine-Renault 29
8 Switzerland Alfa Romeo-Ferrari 2

Only point scoring drivers and constructors are shown.

References[]

Images and Videos:

References:

  1. F1.com: Formula 1 announces provisional 23-race calendar for 2021
  2. F1.com: 2021 F1 calendar reshuffled, as Turkey drops off and extra Austria race added
  3. F1.com: Romain Grosjean to make fairy-tale return to F1 with special one-off Mercedes test
  4. Motorsport.com: Grosjean's F1 test to go ahead despite French GP date change
  5. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named EL
  6. ' ', formula1.com, (Formula One World Championship Limited, 2020), , (Accessed 05/07/2020)
V T E 2021 FIA Formula One World Championship
Teams Alfa RomeoAlphaTauriAlpineAston MartinFerrariHaasMcLarenMercedesRed BullWilliams
Engines FerrariHondaMercedesRenault
Drivers alphabetically AlonsoBottasGaslyGiovinazziHamiltonKubicaLatifiLeclercMazepinNorrisOconPérezRäikkönenRicciardoRussellSainzSchumacherStrollTsunodaVerstappenVettel
Drivers by number 3 Ricciardo • 4 Norris • 5 Vettel • 6 Latifi • 7 Räikkönen • 9 Mazepin • 10 Gasly • 11 Pérez • 14 Alonso • 16 Leclerc • 18 Stroll • 22 Tsunoda • 31 Ocon • 33 Verstappen • 44 Hamilton • 47 Schumacher • 55 Sainz • 63 Russell • 77 Bottas • 88 Kubica • 99 Giovinazzi
Other Drivers AitkenAlbonde Vriesdi RestaFittipaldiHülkenbergIlottKvyatNissanyVandoorneZhou
Cars Alfa Romeo C41AlphaTauri AT02Alpine A521Aston Martin AMR21Ferrari SF21Haas VF-21McLaren MCL35MMercedes W12Red Bull RB16BWilliams FW43B
Tyres Pirelli
Races BahrainImolaPortugalSpainMonacoAzerbaijanFranceStyriaAustriaBritainHungaryBelgiumNetherlandsItalyRussiaTurkeyUnited StatesMexicoSão Paulo • TBA • Saudi ArabiaAbu Dhabi
Postponed/Canceled Races ChinaCanadaSingaporeJapanAustralia
Tests Bahrain
See also 2020 Formula One Season2022 Formula One SeasonCategory
V T E France French Grand Prix
Circuits Reims (1950–1951, 1953–1954, 1956, 1958–1961, 1963, 1966)
Rouen-Les-Essarts (1952, 1957, 1962, 1964, 1968)
Charade Circuit (1965, 1969–1970, 1972)
Bugatti Circuit (1967)
Circuit Paul Ricard (1971, 1973, 1975–1976, 1978, 1980, 1982–1983, 1985–1990, 2018–2019)
Dijon-Prenois (1974, 1977, 1979, 1981, 1984)
Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours (1991–2008)
PR Screen Shot 2017-03-23 at 12.15.31 AM.png
Races 195019511952195319541955195619571958195919601961196219631964196519661967196819691970197119721973197419751976197719781979198019811982198319841985198619871988198919901991199219931994199519961997199819992000200120022003200420052006200720082009–20172018201920202021
European Championship Races 193119321933–193719381939
Non-Championship Races 1906190719081909–19111912191319141915–192019211922192319241925192619271928192919301931–1932193319341935193619371938–1946194719481949
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