Who should watch Drive to Survive Season 5?
I remember the very first Drive to Survive was more informative of what drivers really go through, their hard work, their struggles but all the other seasons have been about controversy, many have their doubts about many things that happen during the season, are they stage or not? like that cover, the Alonso, Piastri, Richardo drama, you wouldnt expect an F1 team make such PR mistakes, my point is Drive to Survive Season 5 is for people who follow the Sunday races and was not paying attention to the things that happen on practice or in between races so they catch up before the 2023 season start, if you didn't then most things wont make sense.
Is Season 5 any good?
I think this time they took the drama out and focus on the performance of the teams, been Ferrari for some a top contender last season and for others not so much because of all their failures, the bs was put asside and this is probably the one season focus on the teams and not the drama considering the huge controversy of drivers contracts Alonso, Piastri, Richardo, Checo, so I would say its not the best one nor its bad since the Drivers Championship was one sided for the most part after the summer brake, there was no real contender with Max wining in Japan and if I'm not mistaken one of the largest advantage in points.
This post most likely will sound like a season review but thats exactly what Drive to Survive is, its just that Netflix came in and saw the potential to make it a Tv Show with all the drama, there is a difference between a show and a series, as F1 was trying to get more impact in USA I guess their PR department thought it would be a great idea to get Formula 1 on Netflix until they got a large amount of angry F1 fans criticizing some of the seasons. I will do my best to cover the important things.
Mattia Binotto fired from Ferrari
One of the biggest injustice of 2022, Mattia Binotto was taken out of the team after achieving second place in the Drivers Championship, this guy is the reason why Ferrari is up there, he took the team on 2019, consider Ferrari last Driver Championship was 2008 with Kimi Räikkönen. I know F1 is a sport that moves very fast in terms of development and teams invest billions into their cars, drivers, mechanics and the rest of the team, for almost 10 years Ferrari was not as dominant as they were on 2022, I know Mattia made some bad calls but at least they should have given him season 2023, give direct instructions, take necessary measures to avoid last season mistakes and move forward.
Ferrari had the fastest car on the grid, this was the car to beat, from the very first race we say how Charles was battling in the front with Max one to one, but in Formula having the fastest car is not enough, clear proof of this was last year race in Monaco, Charles took pole and was doing good but due to bad decisions from the team they lost the race, taking him to the pits to change tires when the still had Carlos Sainz on the pits, another proof of this was Spain when Carlos car had an engine failure and end up on fire. Ferrari had many engine reliability failures to a point that in Mexico they didnt turn up the power in fear that due to the lack of oxygen the engine could suffer some damage.
It was a very unfortunate season for Ferrari, despite having the fastest car on the grid. Ferrari also suffer from purposing but not ad bad as Mercedes, dont get me wrong, the car was not perfect but it was the fastest, thats one of the reasons why Charles was able to take so many poles.
On the drivers department for me Carlos is a better driver he has the skills and has the nerves, is the more realistic from the two drivers so "Stop Inventing...." , hopefully this season will be better for him, Im not saying Charles is a bad driver, as a fact Charles may have more skills but he loose his cool many times last season in and out of track and that leads you to make bad calls during the race, loose concentration, eventually loose confidence in his driving.
Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team
Mercedes performance issues
As you can tell by the images, yes Mercedes had sidepods at first. Mercedes 2022 season was a nightmare or probably the continuation of a nightmare after how they lost 2021 Drivers Championship.
Their cars were reliable, they didn't have to retire too many times, not too many penalties for replacing core components of the car but the performance was not there, many say the problem is the side pods design although they confirm many times was not the issue. For Lewis it was riding a wild horse at times to the point that he start having back pain because of bouncing around the entire race, the lowest the car is to the floor the more purposing and the cart at some times start to bottom out causing this wild movement going up and down bouncing like a spring.
Mercedes did very well with George Russell, at first when he was coming from Williams I thought he wouldn't perform as he did, lets be honest driving a silver arrow is not same as driving a Williams, besides that been on Mercedes everyone is expecting you to perform and be the best if possible. Different than other years Lewis Hamilton was not a main feature of the show for obvious reasons, he was not even close to his prime times, its probably the first time that the second driver ends the season with more points, its a first time for Lewis too to perform so bad, for some reason George was able to understand more the car than him.
It is true that Mercedes end up between the first six on the grid with George taking fourth place and Lewis sixth but the way the team achieve this results is the problem, the rest of the grid is just not there with the top three teams, the one that ran closer was Alpine with Alonso.
Red Bull Racing
Red Bull F1 2022 was probably one of the best seasons for them, almost everything was perfect except for the first three races and that Checo couldnt get the second place, what Max did was very selfish but at the same time thats just life, life is not fair and at high level competition like F1 sooner or latter all big drivers end up on a similar situation.
The Red Bull car was the most balance of the grid, it was not necessary the fastest of a straight line but with Max and Checo skills this team was unbeatable with Max ending the championship with 454 points, 146 points over the second place, plus they won the Constructors Championship and Checo did third place, total domination from Red Bull in 2022.
As anything else in life, success brings rivalry, after Daniel, Gasly, Albon finally Max had a partner that could challenge him, Checo got into Red Bull team on 2021 after one of the best race comeback I have seen, from last to first in Abu Dhabi 2020, his contract ended and Red Bull was looking for a driver, at first in 2021 he was not performing so well but thats usually ok since drivers need to adapt to the car and get it setup to fit his style of driving if possible, it was not until Monaco 2021 where Checo got Red Bull offer a contract extension after wining Monaco and thats when all problems between him and Max started.
Regarding the show this was the type of things I was expecting them to get into details but there was not even minutes about this crash and not only this crash.
Zhou from Alfa Romeo crash
On the previous link I show some images from the Zhou crash on Silverstone and they only cover it for less than 5 minutes, just look at all this images from the crash, have any idea all the data and behind the scenes of even after the crash what happen, how Zhou felt, this guys are lack a lot of imagination when trying to cover an F1 season in 10 episodes.
As Formula 1 fan I'm very disappointed on this show, I was expecting more behind the scenes of things that happen during the season, things that we usually don't see during races, but they didn't, they just recap the season and that's it, even though Red Bull was very dominant there were other stories to cover like Vettel retirement, why Lewis was not performing, the Zhou crash more details about it. Drive to Survive is an ok show for those who don't follow Formula 1 race by race, I watch all practice, qualification and race days during the entire year but if that's their target then I get it, I have to give it a 7 / 10 to season 5.