There may be six more Grands Prix in the next two months, but it is almost a foregone conclusion that Max Verstappen will win the 2022 Formula 1 World Championship.
Verstappen can win his second title in Singapore next week. When he does, he will join the growing number of top single-seater championships already crowned this year.
Stoffel Vandoorne won the Formula E title in August. IndyCar also already has a champion, Will Power claimed his second title earlier this month, while Linus Lundqvist took the Lights crown.
On the F1 support bill there isn’t much to fight for either as the Formula 3 season ended at Monza with Alpine junior Victor Martins being crowned and new Aston Martin junior Felipe Drugovich also wrapping up his Formula 2 title early that weekend.
The W Series returns to action next month at the Singapore Grand Prix. But it has its own Verstappen-like scenario, with it looking unlikely that anyone will stop Jamie Chadwick from winning the title for a third consecutive season.
Even in Super Formula, Japan’s top-level open-wheel series, there is an unusual level of dominance that means Tomoki Nojiri could become a two-time champion with one race to spare.
So where in the world can you find a proper title fight right now if you’re a single-seat fan?
The good news is that while Super Formula may have become somewhat predictable, its F3-level feeder series SF Lights has shed its reputation for single-driver dominance. The title battle between Toyota-backed Kazuto Kotaka and Honda junior Kakunoshin Ohta will be decided in Okayama this weekend.
Kotaka has seven race wins to Ohta’s two, but the less experienced Ohta has won more poles. He is 13 points behind, with 35 to play for in the season finale.
Japanese Formula 4 also has a hotly contested battle at the front between Honda juniors Yusuke Mitsui and Syun Koide and Toyota junior Rin Arakawa almost still in contention with two rounds to go. They could continue their rivalry in SF Lights next year, or Honda could decide to send its top two drivers over to Europe, as it did with Red Bull juniors Yuki Tsunoda and Ayumu Iwasa.
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With a premium F3 test on the line, the battle for the GB3 title between 2020 British F4 champion Luke Browning and 2020 Formula Nordic champion Joel Granfors is definitely one to watch. They are separated by 16.5 points with just one round to go at Donington Park next month.
On their support bill is GB4, Britain’s second F4 series. This boasts a five-way battle heading into Donington, but current points leader Nikolas Taylor and Max Marzorati are the most realistic title contenders. Regardless of who wins, this series is destined to produce very close racing.
Germany’s ADAC F4 series has a runaway leader in Mercedes junior Andrea Kimi Antonelli, but he is unlikely to contest the final round at the Nürburgring next month. That gives former Nico Rosberg protégé Taylor Barnard a chance to overtake him in the points table.
In US F4, there are enough races left to run to provide a long list of candidates, while Danish F4 is another series where the title fight will depend on the top two in the standings, who both face the final round.
Hugh Barter has been left in the French F4 title race as he was ineligible to score points at two events due to previous circuit experience. But his form suggests he can overturn his 32-point deficit to Alessandro Giusti, likely to set up a final showdown for the crown at Paul Ricard next month.
Finally, one of the most exciting series hasn’t even started yet. Australia’s S5000 Tasman series uses cars based on a Formula Regional specification chassis, like the W series, but fitted with a 560 hp Ford Coyote V8 engine. It has revived the Tasman name used in the sixties for a winter series which many F1 drivers contested.
More professional racing drivers, as well as rising talent from the junior single-seater and southern hemisphere stock car scene, are likely to take part as the three-round series visits three iconic tracks. Former IndyCar street venue Surfers Paradise kicks off the action with races on the streets of the Queensland coast in late October, with the fearsome Mount Panorama circuit hosting round two in November.
Finally, the S5000 will support Australian supercars on the streets of Adelaide, which previously hosted F1, in December. If its five-round series earlier this year is anything to go by, expect plenty of action.
Over to you
Which of these series do you want to be seen? And are there any title fights outside of the single seater world that you have your eye on?
Tell us in the comments.
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