F1 French Grand Prix
Sunday July 24, 14:00
Sky Sports F1
After weeks of Red Bull dominating and stretching their lead in both championships, Ferrari produced a timely response in the last two races to show that they've not gone away.
Following six consecutive team wins, five of which came courtesy of defending champion Max Verstappen, it looked as though Red Bull may well start to drive away with it. However, wins for Carlos Sainz and Charles Leclerc at Silverstone and in Austria respectively have seen the Scuderia fight back.
Add to the mix four podiums on the bounce for Mercedes with Lewis Hamilton securing three consecutive third-place finishes, the Silver Arrows have joined the party and could add a crucial new dimension to the battle at the front of the grid.
There is still a gap for them to close on Red Bull and Ferrari, but as they've shown in recent weeks they're now able to fight with them and take points off them and that could ultimately make the championship battles even more fascinating and unpredictable.
Verstappen, Leclerc set for another key duel
After weeks of bad luck and frustration, Leclerc will have been both delighted and relieved in equal measure last time out after winning in Austria.
It didn't come without drama though as he desperately scurried around the track in the final laps while reporting issues in the car, and with Sainz having registered a DNF, the Ferrari garage would have been a nervous wreck.
However, the Monegasque driver made the chequered flag to seal a much-needed win, but Verstappen will now be out to produce a response of his own having won here last year, while the Dutchman has been on the podium in seven of the last eight races.
Leclerc will hope he now has some momentum on his side, but Red Bull will no doubt have been plotting away over the past fortnight on how to reclaim the top step on the podium and deny him the chance to further close in on Verstappen.
Meanwhile, with Mercedes showing that they have the pace to move away from the rest of the field and edge closer and scrap with the front-runners, Hamilton and Russell will feel confident about their chances this weekend.
This track draws comparisons to Silverstone given their similar characteristics with high-speed corners and a flat track surface, and that should suit Mercedes as they're poised to enjoy another healthy haul of points here.
Ocon out to score points on home soil
Esteban Ocon arrives on his home track looking to follow up a brilliant fifth-place finish in Austria, and putting the fact that he got caught up in the carnage of the British Grand Prix aside, he's now bagged points finishes in five of the last seven races.
There were some great stories last time out with Mick Schumacher getting a first top-six finish of his F1 career, while Alpine, Haas and McLaren all had double points finishes from their drivers.
With Williams, Alfa Romeo and Aston Martin needing to find ways to improve, AlphaTauri are bringing a major upgrade this weekend with Pierre Gasly another driver looking to shine on home turf.
However, it could open the door for Ocon and Fernando Alonso to get more points on the board here, and that would certainly delight the French fans hoping for a positive return from their home drivers as Ocon is seemingly the man best positioned to deliver.