12 races down, 12 to go. The Formula 1 season is in full flow, and while the 2023 championship already feels like it is secured in Max Verstappen's quickly growing trophy cabinet, what is happening behind the Dutch star's car is quickly growing into the main attraction for British Formula 1 fans.
As the conclusion of the British Grand Prix at Silverstone brought in the halfway point, we felt it appropriate to take stock of two current headlines which grabbed our attention.
Before we dive into what is going on behind Verstappen's leading car, we wanted to sit back and appreciate what a season Mad Max is having: eight wins, seven pole positions and five fastest laps are the current stats. In his current form, he looks set to beat two records he set last year – most wins in a season (15) and most points in a season (454), and his current 99 point lead over Sergio Perez means he could even break Sebastian Vettel's biggest championship winning margin set in 2013 (155 points).
All three records are impressive in themselves, but there is one which we are sure Max has his eyes set on: the most consecutive races leading the championship, which is currently at 37 races and was set by Formula 1 legend, Michael Schumacher.
Set between the 2000 US Grand Prix and the 2022 Japanese Grand Prix, the record is one which demonstrates the German racer's dominance over the Formula 1 field at the time, and helped cement Schumacher as one of the greatest racers of all time. Verstappen has to hold the lead until the Brazilian Grand Prix to take the record for his own and put his name up there with the greats.
Some have argued that the dominance of Verstappen in Team Red Bull's exceptionally quick and well balanced car is making for a dull contest, but we feel it is worth just sitting back and taking in the feat for what it is – a masterpiece in racing and engineering. The dominance won't last forever, such is the way these things work in racing, but we are sure it will feel like that for all those trying to catch him up!
Did Sunday's British Grand Prix signal a changing of the guard for British race fans? That is a question we were asking following Lando Norris' stunning second place finish at Silverstone in what was a hotly contested ending to the race at Silverstone.
Norris' behaviour on and off the track is quickly endearing himself to the public and it was his ability to fend off his experienced compatriot, Lewis Hamilton, which could have been the moment a new fan favourite was truly born.
It is not just the fact that he demonstrated composure behind the wheel to keep a fast Lewis Hamilton, who used the safety car to his own advantage to set up a close finale to the race, at bay, but it was also his humility and grace during the post race interviews.
He joked about how he grew up watching Hamilton battle it out with Alonso back in 2007 during the now seven time World Champion's first season, in a moment which Hamilton must have found sobering in understanding that he is quickly entering the twilight of his own career.
Quick to praise his fellow Brit for battling hard and fair during the interview, Hamilton was also glowing in his appraisal for Norris' racing during the warmdown lap, describing his pace through the corners as "insane". You could also see Norris' inner child beaming when receiving the compliments from a racer he has looked up to for so long.
The result for Norris is also a far cry from the fortunes Team McLaren had to endure during the opening races of the season. The car struggled to show any pace out on the track and left Lando frustrated for long tracks of time, but following the Austrian Grand Prix, and the upgrade which was installed in Norris' car, it now seems to be a lot more competitive and is allowing Norris to show us all the potential he has to be in our hearts for a long time in the future.
If the British Grand Prix has got you wondering what it is like to get behind the wheel of a single seater race car, check out our Formula 1 Driving Experiences page to see what opportunities await you at UK wide venues through dates on our regularly updated Events Calendar or purchase of one of our open Gift Vouchers.