2022 AM Wings_Mono Negative

8 TikToks you will sacrifice sleep for from the Azerbaijan GP

It was Formula One not as we've experienced before. How best to digest the all-new Sprint format? Via the medium of TikTok, of course.

Azerbaijan TikToks

More bang for your buck. That's the theory underpinning the reboot of F1's Sprint format. Four of the five sessions over the weekend have something tangible at stake, whether that's grid positions or points, and by decoupling the Sprint from the race, teams can go all-in, rather than taking a conservative approach.

Although Sunday's race didn't quite deliver the drama, the rest of the weekend certainly had its moments, with the usual Baku City Circuit blizzard of red flags and crashes. And while, for the first time, we came away from a race in 2023 without a trophy, a very solid weekend saw us increase our gap back to P3 in the Constructors' Championship. Not the worst way to return to the track after nearly a month away…

1 | Start your engines

A month-long gap between Grands Prix was common during Aston Martin's first foray into F1 more than 60 years ago, but it's become very unusual in the modern era. With 26 days between the chequered flag in Melbourne and first practice in Baku, teams would have liked to ease into the weekend gently – but with just the one practice session before qualifying, it was flat-out from the moment the pitlane opened. It's a little bit of a shock to the system – but nice to be back.

2 | Downtime

…though, admittedly, it doesn't always look like a hive of industry when the cars are on track, as @sarahhasanli8 illustrated during practice. On a hectic weekend, at the beginning of a long-haul back-to-back, the only moments of respite for the mechanics are when the drivers are out doing their thing. At this point, like everyone else, they're just watching the broadcast footage.

3 | The next generation

F1 has become a lot more youthful in its appeal over the last few years – so this perhaps takes things to their logical conclusion. The dog, however, seems less impressed with qualifying. Maybe more of a GT fan.

4 | Weights and measures

When does a race end? For fans, it finishes at the chequered flag. For the teams it isn't over until the cars have passed scrutineering and the final classification is released – usually a couple of hours after the grandstands have emptied.

There's a bit more hustle when you're doing it on Saturday evening with another race on Sunday, so while the drivers are still doing their TV spots, the AMR23 is pushed onto the weighbridge in the FIA garage, the scrutineers are accommodated with whatever battery of checks they wish to perform off the randomised list, and then the car is back down on the deck and heading to our garage for assessment, (hopefully) minor repair and an awful lot of polishing, ready to do it all over again on Sunday.

5 | Teamwork makes the dream work

Do you ever wonder if that polishing does any good? You saw the perfect example in qualifying, with Lance setting the exact same time as Oscar Piastri to the thousandth of a second and starting ahead by virtue of setting the time first. A thousandth of a second… that's the difference between cleaning the engine cover or not.

There are, however, ways for the team to find even more time – such as Fernando staying on track after his run to give Lance a tow up the main straight in the Sprint Shootout, relaying optimal brake balance settings to Lance over team radio, or Lance holding formation with Fernando rather than attacking and costing the pair time and tyre life as they waited for the opportune moment to try to pass Lewis Hamilton ahead. As @formula_shanna identifies here, Lance and Fernando are the team-mates you really want in your garage.

6 & 7 | Meanwhile, in São Paulo…

F1 is playing to packed grandstands everywhere we go and frankly, demand is outstripping supply. We can't add in countless more races but, together with our partner XP, we're doing the next best thing and bringing F1 to our fans, taking a replica AMF1 Team Grand Prix car the length and breadth of Brazil in a shopping mall grand tour running until November.

In addition to the car, the stand also demonstrates a range of F1 equipment and kit, plus a couple of very high-end simulators. It's free to visit and everyone is welcome, and you never know, we might just discover the next generation of Brazilian superstar…

8 | Onwards, ever onwards

If Baku has whetted your appetite for the sight of F1 cars screaming through narrow city streets and hitting incredible speeds along a sea-front promenade, then you won't have to wait long to be sated. Though the Vantage F1 Edition appears to have jumped the gun a little bit: before we head for Monaco, there's the small matter of a visit to Imola, and, this weekend, the fabulous Miami Grand Prix…

Follow @AstonMartinF1 and co-create our story by sharing your videos on TikTok throughout the season as we continue our journey.


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