Gear Up - Formula 1 - 2017
Ten teams will contest the 2017 Formula 1 World Championship with Mercedes looking to retain its 2016 World Constructors title against fierce competition from the likes of Red Bull, Ferrari, McLaren and Williams.
With pre-season testing now underway in Barcelona, 2017 brings some notable changes to the technical regulations. Among these, fewer restrictions on aerodynamic design. This means bodywork and tyres will be wider, boosting downforce and grip. Making the cars more physically demanding to drive, it is also likely to result in faster times. Maybe as much as 3 to 5 seconds per lap.
With 20 Grand Prix on the calendar, the season will open on 26 March in Australia; concluding in Abu Dhabi on 26 November. The British Grand Prix will take place at Silverstone on 16 July.
Among the driver changes, there are two notable absences. Nico Rosberg retired at the end of last season and Jenson Button, missing from the grid for the first time in 17 years.
All the ingredients for a thrilling season and who knows, it may just re-shuffle the field.