Five reasons to get excited about the new F1 season

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Formula One fans around the world are eagerly anticipating the new season, and we reckon there are plenty of reasons to be excited for the year ahead.

Starting this weekend in Australia, 20 drivers will contest 20 races over the next eight months.

Mercedes have dominated the last three seasons, but things could be about to change.

Here’s why we reckon the 2017 season can live up to the hype.

Faster cars

This year the cars will look drastically different to years gone by.

New rules mean the cars are wider, faster and all out cooler.

They’ll be up to five seconds a lap quicker, and we should see a real premium placed this year on driving quality – and that can only be a good thing.

An Italian renaissance

Ferrari were mighty impressive in pre-season testing last month. And anyone who wants to see a competitive season should have their fingers crossed that the Scuderia’s pace is the real deal.

If it is, and we will find out very shortly, then a Ferrari v Mercedes battle will be just the tonic the sport needs.

After a difficult few years, both Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen will relish being in a race-winning car. Expect fireworks.

Driver changes

Only one team has maintained their driver line-up from the start of last season – Ferrari. In a busy winter, seven teams have signed new drivers, so we should see plenty of exciting plotlines developing up and down the grid.

Has Nico Hulkenberg finally landed on his feet with his long-awaited big move to Renault? How will Kevin Magnussen get on at Haas? And just what can we expect from Valtteri Bottas at Mercedes?

Williams resurgence

After finishing third in the Constructor’s championships in 2014, Williams have slipped down the pecking order in the last two years. But the popular Oxfordshire outfit could be set to stem the tide – and in style too.

The team posted very impressive times in Barcelona testing, and it’s been reported that Felipe Massa is loving the new generation of racers.

And if Canadian sensation Lance Stroll can come good on the hype, then we can expect a big season ahead for the former champions.

Red Bull battles

After making the step up from Toro Rosso last season, Max Verstappen now has a full winter programme under his belt as a Red Bull driver.

That should only make the exceptional Dutchman an ever greater prospect this season, while Daniel Ricciardo upped his game to incredible levels last year.

If the Milton Keynes-based squad can mix it with Ferrari and Mercedes this season, fireworks could be a regular occurrence between these two hard chargers in what is arguably the strongest – and most competitive – driver pairing on the grid.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing

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