By Aidan Lomas – Editor-in-Chief
Continuing to ride the F1 DRS-train I’ve been enjoying this year, I thought it was only fitting that I repeat the efforts of my first ever article for this newspaper and review the most recent livery launches for the 2022 F1 Season. Before we begin, however, I should warn some fellow F1 fans not to get too excited; this season may finally see our sport implement the long-awaited overhaul of regulations, but the artistic side of motor-racing appears to have stuck within its tried-and-tested comfort zone. That is, so far…
F1 Fans were shocked earlier this month with the surprise news of Haas’s 2022 Livery Launch; having expected Red Bull to be the first, it was a welcome present from the American team. Meanwhile, the livery itself isn’t all that interesting.
Once again bringing an ironic ‘Russian flair’ to the American team on 2022’s grid, – something rumoured to be changed in light of recent Eastern European tensions between NATO and the Russian Federation – the Haas VF-22 is a copy and paste job like no other – by this, I of course mean like no other…other than Haas’s 2021 model. Despite the team confirming this release comes during the development process of their 2022 machine, it’s disappointing to see that the first livery launch is a perfect recreation of their previous artistic endeavours. Nevertheless, F1 fans around the world were ecstatic to finally see what the next era of Formula One will look like.
Now, I should, in all fairness, be unreserved in saying the same of Red Bull as I have of Haas. However, there’s a key difference between the two teams’ approaches to livery launches. Whilst Haas snuck their release in early, Red Bull have yet to actually reveal their 2022 car. It’s not unsurprising, given their position as a podium and championship fighting team, that Red Bull want to hide as much as possible about their 2022 beast for as long as possible. For this reason, the 2022 Red Bull livery launch is in fact a 2022 ‘There’s a strong chance our car will look something like this’ Event. Nevertheless, fans will get to enjoy the RB18 when it takes to track in Bahrain later this year.
But who cares? When it comes to tried-and-tested comfort zones, Red Bull’s livery designers are in prime position to sit back and relax. The iconic deep blue base matched with the hints of yellow, and of course the infamous Red Bull logo, is a winning combination. When it comes to moments where “the sequel is worse than the original”, we F1 fans can rest assured knowing we’ll never have to see a sequel – the original has been and will remain perfection.
Having only joined the grid in 2021, the 2022 Aston Martin livery being remarkably similar to that of their return season is something I for one can forgive. Whilst I have to admit I often find myself missing the pink streaks of their former Racing Point selves in the midfield, there’s no denying the iconic British Racing Green – an homage to the Irish people whose streets hosted the earliest motor-races in the UK back in the 1903 Gordon Bennett Cup – is welcome to stay for as long as the team stays in the sport; the satisfying luminescent yellow stripe is a nice addition too.
One important difference between the Aston Martin launch and their American and Austrian counterparts is the fact that, for the first time this year, we’ve been able to actually see what the future of F1 looks like. The AMR22 is the first completed car under the new regulations to be publicly shown; whilst I’m sure there’s still some changes to come along the way in the run up to both pre-season testing’s conclusion and the first race of the 2022 season this time in March, there’s certainly a lot to enjoy about the 2022 Aston Martin racing livery.
Naturally, considering F1 and Sir Lewis’s presence in the Lomas household arose largely in the late 2000s, I proudly confess I am a grossly biased McLaren Fan; with the honesty-policy out of the way, let’s look at the 2022 McLaren livery…easily the best on the grid so far.
Whilst the Papaya Orange of Bruce McLaren remains front and centre, – the old Vodafone livery with its iconic chrome body work and red patterning remaining eternally at the front of my mind- the combination with the refreshingly light tones of blue and the grounding strips of black makes the 2022 McLaren MCL36 a pioneering piece of art and machinery coming together. Whilst video footage of the car is yet to be created, with a shooting day set for Barcelona later this month, the images emerging of the car demonstrate the key to McLaren’s 2021 and, perhaps, 2022 success: youth. McLaren boasts the immense talents of Lando Norris. The twitch streamer who races on weekends has brought millions of fresh young minds’ attentions to the racetrack of supreme engineering, and the youthful livery of the MCL36 reflects this to a tee.
With the remaining grid set to release their 2022 liveries later this month, there’s certainly a lot for F1 fans to be excited about as we prepare ourselves for what could be the closest F1 season for many years – and I’m including 2021 in that list. The launch dates for the rest of the grid can be found below:
- AlphaTauri: 14th of February
- Williams: 15th of February
- Ferrari: 17th of February
- Mercedes AMG-Petronas: 18th of February
- Alpine: 21st of February
- Alfa Romeo: 27th of February