Drive To Survive Season 4: Why I’m Not Looking Forward To It

Drive To Survive Season 4

Drive To Survive Season 4 will hit our screens in March and for the first time since the series began, I’m really not looking forward to it. 

Now before you mash the keys with ‘you’re just a bitter Lewis fanboy’ comments let me assure you that as a proud Tifosi of some 30-odd years, it mattered little to me if it was Max Verstappen or Lewis Hamilton who won, as we didn’t have a prancing horse in the title race in 2021. 

No, the reason I’m not looking forward to Drive To Survive Season 4 is two-fold… 

  1. It really felt like the end of the race in Abu Dhabi was contrived specifically for Netflix

And

  1. The reaction after the race on social media (and in the days and weeks after) was the most toxic I’ve ever seen in F1, and I fear a repeat when the series drops. 

Let’s examine these two points in further detail… 

Did Michael Masi break any rules?

Everyone knows what happened at the end of the race in Abu Dhabi, there is no need to go over old ground here, but a lot of people have been asking, did Michael Masi break any rules?

It’s important to note that while Masi’s decisions around the Safety Car and the late restart were controversial, they actually didn’t break the wording of the Sporting Regulations per se. 

It is more the way Masi handled the situation, with his ‘Toto, it’s called a motor race ok, we went car racing’ that has rubbed many people up the wrong way as it gives the impression of decisions being made on the fly – ie to suit a television audience.

Now it’s no secret that F1 is trying to conquer the US market and attract more viewers to the sport from across America, and as our own analytics tells us readers of our Beginners Guide To Formula 1 increase every race weekend with most of that traffic coming from the US.

So to finish the race and indeed the championship behind a safety car would have made F1 a laughing stock on every channel across the country. 

Fans who have grown accustomed to big events that crown a champion like the Super Bowl would have laughed, turned off, and probably never come back. 

With the finish we had, the Netflix episode can ratchet up the tension and the drama, so people who are seeing it for the first time will be captivated and feel compelled to start watching the 2022 F1 season live, because as we know, once the F1 bug bites, you’re hooked!

So while I can appreciate that I’m not the target demographic of the F1 marketing team, it doesn’t mean I have to like it, which brings me to Point 2… 

Why is F1 social media toxic?

I’m old enough to remember a time when you would watch a race (or any sport) and it would end, you would watch the podium presentation, switch it off, and go back to living your life. 

Now it seems every detail of every action needs to be broken down in minutia and argued about on the internet by people who a) have no idea what they’re talking about and b) have no intention of listening to another point of view anyway. 

After the race in Abu Dhabi you couldn’t go on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, or Reddit without some Big Time Charlie explaining why their favourite driver deserved to be World Champion and why everyone else was wrong, followed by hundreds of comments arguing the point. 

And the thing is, this didn’t only happen after Abu Dhabi. 

F1 Twitter, in particular, has always been a bit of an acquired taste, but in 2021 it became so toxic that I stopped participating, as did many other long-term followers of the sport that I know. 

Maybe it’s because we’re getting old, but I just do not have the patience or energy to have my eyes and mind filled with such hate all day every day. 

Knowing it will all kick off again when Drive To Survive Season 4 is released has me pre-emptively exhausted 😭

Will I watch Drive to Survive Season 4? 

Yes, of course, because it is F1 content and I still love the sport. 

Am I looking forward to it? 

Sadly, no. 

While it will be great to relive some of the incredible moments such as the Max v Lewis battles, Seb on the podium, and McLaren’s 1-2 at Monza, I know I’ll have that nagging feeling as we get closer to the final episode that the big (for me) anti-climax is coming…

When is the Drive to Survive Season 4 coming out? 

The early rumours suggest Drive to Survive Season 4 will kick off on 11 March 2022 which would be impeccable timing, as it is during the Bahrain test and exactly a week before the first race of the season, the Bahrain Grand Prix.

New fans would be hooked in, and would only have a few days to wait for the start of the season, meaning they’re more likely to act on impulse and sign up for a service such as F1TV so they can watch the races. 

How can I watch Drive to Survive Season 4? 

There is only one way to watch Drive to Survive Season 4 – get Netflix.

Depending on your location, you can also stream Netflix through a service like Amazon Fire TV, Google Chromecast, or Apple TV. 

Will Max Verstappen be in Drive to Survive Season 4? 

Sadly for fans of the current World Champion, Max Verstappen will not feature in the new series of Drive to Survive, having told the Associated Press “I understand that it needs to be done to boost the popularity in America. But from my side as a driver, I don’t like being part of it.”

“They faked a few rivalries which they don’t really exist. So I decided to not be a part of it and did not give any more interviews after that because then there is nothing you can show.”

“I am not really a dramatic show kind of person, I just want facts and real things to happen.”

What can we expect in Drive to Survive Season 4? 

Well as always we can expect drama, tension, and a bit of poetic licence to help build the drama and tension, but what race moments should we look out for? 

As the Grid Talk crew talked about on ‘The Best Drives Of 2021’ podcast, Max at COTA, Lewis in Brazil, and Daniel Ricciardo at Monza should all get their fair share of air time in the new series. 

It was an incredible season of so many highlights, so it would also be great to see some of the behind the scenes footage from Alpine’s first win with Esteban Ocon, as well as the growing divide between Mich Schumacher and Nikita Mazepin at Haas. 

So there should be plenty of good moments in the series, but at the moment, it still all feels a bit too ‘meh’ for my liking.

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