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F1 2024 Prediction: Race Winners - Which Drivers will Win a Grand Prix this Season?

Written by Owen Bradley, Ria Ann Sam, Meghana Sree, Jacob Awcock

The new Formula One season is right around the corner and with Pre-Season testing at Bahrain now completed, we have a better understanding of some drivers who could take a Grand Prix victory this year. Our writers predict which drivers can take at least one victory in 2024.

"It only takes a few things to change a race" -Owen Bradley

Credit: Beata Zawrzel

It only takes a few drivers to have some luck fall their way, be in the right place at the right time and they can become Formula One Grand Prix winners. Thinking back to 2020's Italian GP at Monza where Pierre Gasly took a shock victory, with Carlos Sainz and Lance Stroll in hot pursuit. All it took for Gasly, was a few things to come his way - Hamilton's pit stop with a blocked pit lane led to a penalty which put him further behind the rest of the field because a Safety Car had come out, with only a handful of laps remaining.

With this being said, I think it's easy to see that Max Verstappen will likely win the majority of races as he did in both 2023 and 2022, and I could see him even winning every race of the season, provided he doesn't get complacent. From a spectator's perspective though, we don't want to watch the same person winning all the time.

If a few things in a couple of races can fall his way, I do believe Fernando Alonso will finally be able to take another victory as we are now over a decade since he last set foot on the top step of the podium. Lewis Hamilton is another one who, now in his final year with Mercedes, will be looking to leave his beloved team with a massive high note.

You can never count the Ferrari's of Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz out, and with Sainz holding the fastest time in Pre-Season, perhaps the Ferrari will be the quickest car over one lap pace, and have to battle with both Red Bull cars during the Grand Prix, which could lead to some crashes or accidents from both of them. Sainz particularly, was the only person to interrupt the Red Bull 2023 dominance, so surely with Leclerc leading the team beyond 2024, and Sainz fighting for his career, we are about to see the Ferrari's risk it all to win.

And somebody who I desperately hope will win this year, is Oscar Piastri. Having caught up with the Australian at the Goodwood Festival of Speed in 2023, Piastri told me that he hopes to be in a winning position with McLaren very soon, and whilst he did go on to win the Qatar Sprint race, it is possible that Piastri could take victory in the main Grand Prix at some stage this year, and just imagine the beautiful scenes if he was to win at Melbourne in front of his adoring home crowd, doing what Mark Webber and (so far) Daniel Ricciardo have unfortunately failed to do. A competitive season is what the fans want, and Red Bull aside it looks as though we are in for one of the greatest seasons of all time. A thrilling season, certainly lays upon us.

Climbing the steps - Ria Ann Sam

Credit: Jakub Porzycki

I’m sure it won’t be a surprise to anyone to see Max Verstappen’s name on this list because it's inevitable that he will win - a matter of when rather than if. But who else will stand on the top step of the podium?

I believe Sergio Perez will get at least one win - after all, he is nicknamed the King of the Streets for a reason, not to mention he will be driving in one of the most dominant cars on the grid. 

I also believe that both of the Ferrari drivers will win, though that may be the optimism in me talking. In another article, I predicted that Leclerc would be the 2024 champion and to be the champion, he would need to win at least one race. I also think that Carlos Sainz will get a win this year as his last hurrah at Ferrari. Additionally, being the only non-Red Bull driver to win in the 2023 season makes me hopeful that he will win at least one race this season. I am also predicting that either one of the Ferrari drivers will finish first in both Imola and Monza.

The other drivers that I'm going to predict might only be one-time race winners but I do expect to see them on the top step.

Starting with a driver I predicted would win last year…and the year before that: Lando Norris, and I do truly have faith that he will win. What gives me the confidence to predict this so boldly? Delusion and hope. Lando is an incredibly talented driver and he was one of the only drivers to challenge Verstappen last season. He has also come close to winning several times so for this reason I’m predicting a Lando Norris win.

I can also see seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton winning at least one race this season. Leaving his home team of Mercedes and moving to Ferrari for 2025 is an upsetting move for many in the Mercedes garage and fans alike - what better way to end a chapter than by winning a race?

Finally, I can see Fernando Alonso potentially winning a race this season. Fernando had a stellar season in 2023, finishing on the podium many times. If the Aston Martin has upgraded well enough, there’s nothing to say that Alonso can’t win.

Regarding sprint winners, I can see Oscar Piastri winning another sprint race, and perhaps George Russell

“Anything can happen in Formula One…” - Meghana Sree

Credit: Emmanuele Ciancaglini

Let’s start with the obvious, shall we? Of course, we know the Red Bull team has built a beast of a car, and with a driver like Max Verstappen leading the pack, it would be preposterous to discount the champion who won 19 of the 22 races in 2023. 

The two Ferrari drivers are also highly likely to win a handful of races this year seeing as their car has hugely improved driveability, and both Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz described a smoother test drive this year, compared to 2023. 

Reports also suggest that the SF-24’s setup leans more towards Leclerc’s style of driving, with more oversteer, so one can certainly expect a sixth F1 win for the Monégasque. Sainz will definitely be close to Leclerc’s level of performance, and could very well deliver an emotional win for the Scuderia, with whom it is his last season. 

With Red Bull and Ferrari being the two fastest teams thus far, the positions of other teams are not written in stone. Between Mercedes, McLaren, and Aston Martin, all is to play for. Any of these teams could challenge the top two for wins, and a strong case can be made for Lewis Hamilton from Mercedes and Aston Martin’s Fernando Alonso. 

As with Sainz, an emotional last win with his team is not out of the question for Hamilton, who will be replacing the Spaniard in Ferrari next year. Although Mercedes seems significantly slower than Ferrari, different tracks bring out different characteristics of each car, and on a track that suits the W15, Hamilton’s final win for the Silver Arrows is certainly on the cards. 

Aston Martin and McLaren made headlines in 2023 for how both teams managed to completely turn their seasons around, with McLaren’s twist of fate being successful and Aston’s being sorrowful. However, Aston Martin have seemingly learnt from their mistakes and have understood where they went wrong in 2023. With these positive signs coupled with Alonso’s experience and racecraft, if the situation presents itself, it’s safe to say Alonso will eagerly grab his 33rd F1 win. 

While it was McLaren who finished last year on a high, during 2024’s Pre-Season Testing, they had not made huge leaps in performance. Although they can certainly compete for Sprint wins and podiums, Grand Prix wins are doubtful at this stage. Unless they can once again manage to shoot up to the top of the field mid-season, it can be predicted that Lando Norris might just break the unwanted record of most podiums without a win, currently tied with Nick Heidfeld at 13 podiums.

So yes, while Verstappen is the clear favourite to win a majority of the races once more this year, the fact remains that the other teams have tried to close the gap to Red Bull, throwing in plenty more opportunities for drivers like Leclerc, Sainz, Hamilton, and Alonso to win a Grand Prix. If Red Bull ever slip up, rest assured that any team will be more than ready to pounce upon the opportunity for a win, just like Singapore 2023.

As the legendary Murray Walker proclaimed, “Anything can happen in Formula One, and it usually does.”

“The Bull sees red”  - Jacob Awcock

Credit: Tayfun Coskun

It seems far-fetched to believe that anyone will get close to Red Bull this season; a radical design by Adrian Newey that looks set to pay dividends and a formidable driver line up will be an impressive achievement if any team can come close to, let alone beat, the Red Bull.

Inevitably, Max Verstappen will win a large proportion of the races this season yet I believe this season will be Sergio Perez’s season of success and he will claim not the most, but enough wins to secure him the world championship come Abu Dhabi. However, it will not be plain sailing for him and Max Verstappen will challenge him the whole way through and will claim more Grand Prix wins, but Perez will come out on top based on consistency and experience. 

But, Perez will have another challenge other than his teammate in the form of the Scuderia and this will prove to be a concern in the first few races. With testing highlighting some reliability concerns for Red Bull, alongside the disruption that the Christian Horner allegations will have caused, they will be on the back foot in Bahrain and Saudi and Ferrari will pounce on this with both drivers claiming a win at one circuit each. 

I apologise to McLaren fans and Mercedes fans but their cars are just not up to the standard needed to win a race. McLaren have a strong chance at some sprint race wins as well as podiums but I find it hard to see the papaya being on the top step due to Red Bull’s dominant and consistent pace. Likewise with Mercedes, they will be strong contenders for a podium and will be prominent in the midfield battle but the aerodynamic blunder of the ‘zero sidepod theory’ will still haunt them this season due to the ground lost in the development race.

The Opening race of the 2024 season is just a few days away, and at the end of the year our predictions will have been answered. Who do you think will win a Grand Prix in 2024? let us know in the comments below!


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