Netflix has confirmed the second season of the no-holds-barred documentary Formula 1: Drive to Survive will premiere on the streaming service on February 28.
Drive to Survive‘s first season aired on Netflix last March, following the F1 circus around the world during the 2018 season. With all areas access, the show revealed some of the more intense, grittier sides of the sport behind the scenes.
The show featured some startlingly candid interviews with drivers and key figures in the sport, mixed with live action — and reaction — from the pitlane and paddock. It let viewers experience some aspects of F1 they’d never normally see. At times this made for some extraordinarily uncomfortable viewing, as many of the famous faces bickered over incidents, or driver and engine contracts.
Season two promises more of the same, as Netflix and Box to Box Films followed the 2019 F1 calendar, with one pretty major change. The original series made do with two rather significant omissions from the F1 grid, but both Ferrari and Mercedes granted Netflix the same access as everyone else this time round. Unfortunately for Mercedes, Netflix was in the pit garage during its worst weekend of the season by far, at the German Grand Prix, as the team was celebrating its 125th anniversary in motorsport.
Following that woeful weekend at Hockenheim, some media reported that the team and Lewis Hamilton wouldn’t allow the footage to air. We won’t have to wait long to find out how true this is, but it was a very low point in an otherwise successful season as Mercedes secured a sixth consecutive championship — and Hamilton his sixth drivers’ championship.
It will be particularly interesting to see Ferrari’s take on the 2019 season. The renowned Italian team was a strong title contender last season, but suffered too many costly mistakes both as a team and for the drivers themselves. We’re particularly interested in what went down following Sebastian Vettel and Charles Leclerc’s collision during the Brazilian Grand Prix.
There’ll be plenty of other talking points that the show should cover from its unique perspective. Red Bull’s switch to Honda engines, and its decision to demote Pierre Gasly and promote Alexander Albon will likely feature. So should the continuing trials of Haas — and the gloriously frank Gunther Steiner — as Romain Grosjean crashed several times, including in the pit lane exit at Silverstone. One particularly sad note for the season, which should form part of the first episode, was the untimely death of Charlie Whiting, FIA Race Director, shortly before the first race of the year.
While there’s no denying the show’s appeal to existing F1 fans, Drive to Survive exposed the sport to a wider audience. We can’t wait to see what the second season brings from behind the scenes, and it’s a perfect way to whet your appetite leading up to the season-opening Australian Grand Prix on March 15.