Max Verstappen won the Formula 1 season this year and this time it was fair and square. Without triggering the unresolvable debate of how controversial his coronation as champion was in 2021, let's just admit that he has been indisputably quick this season.

Verstappen and his team, Red Bull, have managed to put a considerable amount of daylight between them and their close competitions from previous years - Mercedes and Ferrari. Remarkably, in the very early stages of the season this year, Verstappen had managed to win just one out of the three races, with two ending with a 'did not finish' (DNF) result for him.

Ferrari seemed surprisingly fast in those races with Charles Leclerc winning the remaining two. It seemed like the Ferraris were going to be a real threat to the reigning champion and his team. That turned out to be just a minor wrinkle for Red Bull to straighten out, once Verstappen managed to find his groove in his mighty RB18.

With three races still remaining on the calendar, Verstappen has flashed past everyone who thought the driver won by fluke in 2021. After a shaky start to the season in those first three races, Verstappen managed 14 podium finishes in the next 16 races, winning 12 of them.

A look back at this year's Formula 1 season, where the winner has already been decided, despite three races still remaining in the calendar, and what's to come next year

What a season his teammate, Sergio Perez has also had this year - perfectly complimenting the glory of his champion partner. He managed to win himself two of his own Grand Prix.

Meanwhile, it was a rather exasperating season for the Scuderia Ferrari, impacted by a laundry list of technical difficulties and blunders with their race strategies. As with Red Bull, Ferrari's season can be very distinctly split into two phases, performance-wise. The Scuderia were in contention with their closest rivals, the two Red Bulls, until the French Grand Prix in July.

During the early part of the season in Bahrain, Australia, Spain, Monaco, Azerbaijan and even at Red Bull's home Grand Prix in Austria, Ferrari was often quicker and it felt like this would be a close battle for the top this year. It eventually turned out quite the opposite. Ferrari had colossal reliability issues, with their gorgeous F1-75 contributing majorly to the ever-so-painful DNFs on race Sundays.

In 19 races this season, Leclerc failed to finish three while Carlos Sainz suffered with a piece of much tougher luck...

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