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2021 Formula 1 team******
by F1 correspondent Michael Butterworth
BEIJING, Dec. 20 (Xinhua) -- A year full of intrigue, suspense, drama and controversy that went all the way to the last lap of the last race, Formula 1's 2021 season will go down in history as one of the sport's very best, with Max Verstappen snatching the title from Lewis Hamilton in hotly contested circumstances in Abu Dhabi.
As F1 now looks forward to a new era in 2022, with a different set of technical regulations for designers and engineers to abide by, Xinhua takes a look back at a truly classic year.
Red Bull Racing
After years of playing second fiddle to the dominant Mercedes, Red Bull finally gave Max Verstappen a car capable of challenging for the title, and the Dutchman duly delivered the goods in the most dramatic of circumstances in Abu Dhabi. Verstappen's aggressive driving style may polarise opinion, and there were times in 2021 where the Dutchman's approach to wheel-to-wheel combat with Hamilton overstepped the mark, but there can be no doubting his sheer speed or the worthiness of his first world title.
Settling in at Red Bull after years in mediocre machinery, Sergio Perez generally struggled to match his mercurial teammate, but inherited a win in Baku and showed his willingness to play the team game and support Verstappen's title charge, particularly at Abu Dhabi. The Mexican's experience deficit will be wiped out by next year's new regulations, and Perez will hope to close the gap to the new world champion.
A record eighth world championship snatched away at the death in the cruelest and most controversial manner. Lewis Hamilton would have been just as deserving of the 2021 title as Verstappen, with the two frequently operating on a different level from the other 18 drivers. F1's most statistically successful driver of all time knows better than anyone how to win races and titles, and will surely be fighting at the front again next year along with new teammate George Russell.
Valtteri Bottas's final year with Mercedes largely followed the pattern of his previous seasons with the Silver Arrows, with the Finn capable of beating Hamilton on occasion but lacking the consistency to challenge regularly, and his weakness in passing traffic became increasingly evident as the season wore on. Bottas will be reacquainting himself with the bottom half of the grid in 2022, as the Finn moves onto a new challenge with Alfa Romeo.
Another winless season for the Prancing Horse, but a definite step forward from the nadir of 2020. The Scuderia scored points in every race bar one, with Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz occasionally gate-crashing the top three when the usual suspects hit trouble. A strong end to the season helped the Maranello concern seal third in the constructors' standings ahead of McLaren, and Sainz notably impressed in his first year at Ferrari by finishing ahead of his much-vaunted teammate.
Ferrari's legions of fans are unlikely to be content with the storied marque scrapping for occasional podiums, however, and there is considerable pressure for the Prancing Horse to remain upwardly mobile and return to the winners' dais in 2022 and beyond.
A close-season switch to Mercedes power represented the latest step in McLaren's return to form after a barren few years. Lando Norris cemented his status as a star of the future with a series of impressive drives and was desperately unlucky not to win at Sochi when a late rain shower caught him out.
Settling down into his third new team in four seasons, Daniel Ricciardo spent much of the year in the shadow of his less-experienced teammate, but it was the Australian who delivered the Woking squad's first win since 2012 with a faultless drive at Monza. Team boss Zak Brown has engendered a real sense of positivity around McLaren, who will doubtless be hoping they can leave the midfield behind as F1's new era begins next year.
The newly-named Alpine squad plateaued somewhat in 2021, remaining fifth in the standings but falling away from the teams above them. Nonetheless, Esteban Ocon had his day of days in Hungary, taking advantage of first-lap chaos to score a fairytale maiden win, with the Frenchman also signing a three-year contract extension with Alpine.
Reacclimatising to F1 after two years away, Fernando Alonso showed that his hiatus from the sport had not blunted his legendary guile and racecraft, and the Spaniard's defensive masterclass against Lewis Hamilton was instrumental in securing Ocon's Budapest win. Alpine could do with a great leap forward in 2022, but is the team's leadership structure too muddled to make important decisions effectively?
AlphaTauri will tell you that 2021 was the team's most successful year ever in terms of points finishes, but there is a lingering whiff of underachievement about the Faenza squad's season. The AT02 was frequently best of the rest behind Mercedes and Red Bull in qualifying but often slipped back on race day, leaving the team only sixth in the constructors' standings.
Fully rehabilitated after his chastening demotion from Red Bull in mid-2019, Pierre Gasly scored regular points and clearly enjoyed mixing it with the big boys at the front of the field. Rookie Yuki Tsunoda showed a good turn of speed on occasion but proved frustratingly inconsistent and accident-prone. With Tsunoda's long-time backers Honda pulling out of Formula 1, the Japanese needs to impress next year to appease Red Bull's notoriously trigger-happy management.
The much-heralded return to F1 of the Aston Martin brand ended in disappointment, with the car falling back from where its Racing Point predecessor had finished in 2020. Sebastian Vettel may have lost an ounce of pace from his Red Bull pomp, but the four-time champion's cunning and experience saw him pick up valuable points, including a fine second at Baku.
Whilst not completely out of his depth, teammate Lance Stroll has done little to suggest he will be anything other than an F1 journeyman, and his continued employment owes much to his father's ownership of the team. Lawrence Stroll is not a man accustomed to failure, and with an ambitious recruitment program underway and a new factory being constructed, few would bet against Aston Martin rising up the grid in the coming years.
Another step in the right direction for the once-proud Williams team, who scored their first points in two years at the Hungarian Grand Prix, and rose from tenth to eighth in the standings by season's end. George Russell again transcended the limits of his car, frequently placing it above quicker rivals, and his second place in Spa's non-race was just reward for his heroics in qualifying. The Briton finally gets his long-awaited move to Mercedes next year, where he will finally have a car worthy of his undoubted talent.
The affable Nicholas Latifi chipped in with a couple of points finishes and continues at Williams next year, though his place continues to owe much to the financial backing he brings to the team.
A disappointing campaign for Alfa Romeo, who finished behind Williams despite often being the quicker car of the two. Veteran Kimi Raikkonen often had the air of a man who would rather be elsewhere, and the 42-year-old's retirement from F1 at the end of 2021 surprised few.
Antonio Giovinazzi frequently showed a good turn of pace in qualifying before slipping back in races. After three years with the team, the Italian has been moved aside as Alfa ring the changes for 2022, hiring Valtteri Bottas to lead the team into F1's new era alongside Chinese rookie Zhou Guanyu.
A season that began with little in the way of fanfare or expectation played out exactly as many predicted, with the American team pointless and propping up the standings. Rookie duo Mick Schumacher and Nikita Mazepin plodded gamely on with a VF-21 that saw little to no in-season development, with Schumacher usually the quicker of the two.
Both drivers will at least have the benefit of continuity as they remain on board for 2022 and F1's hard reset. Whether this will drastically alter Haas's fortunes appears unlikely, with team boss Gene Haas seemingly losing interest in his F1 venture. Enditem
4月16日至21日，世界最顶级的赛事之一的FACEIT全球巅峰赛在伦敦举行。 邀请了来自全世界最强的24支队伍参与，代表中国大陆的四支电竞战队4AM 、OMG、17、CL来到伦敦参加比赛，与来自世界各地的其他20支战队比拼“吃鸡”。
华闻君是在 位于伦敦中国城的网鱼网咖采访的韦神， 网鱼网咖伦敦店是本次中国军团四支战队的伦敦官方训练室。
由于《绝地求生》的游戏设定，该局里获得胜利的玩家，其获胜的庆祝画面会显示“winner winner，chicken dinner”这句话，翻译成中文就是“大吉大利，今晚吃鸡”。 因此，获得胜利就等于是成功“吃鸡”，“吃鸡”这个梗就是这么来的。
韦神： 蛮满意的。 等另外一组比赛打完了，可能是第四、第五名（华闻君采访时小组赛还没有结束，昨天小组赛结束后，4AM名列第六，直接进入了总决赛），也会以前8名的成绩提前进入总决赛里面。
韦神： 我们没打好的话，会在打完之后，做一个大概的总结。 回去时再去看复盘，再做一次认真彻底的总结。 不会去怀疑自己，还是很确信自己的打法是没有问题的。
韦神： 我的队友发挥得都蛮不错的。 如果大家打不好的话，是拿不到这个成绩的。 其他队伍还是有点紧张。 17 Gaming打得不错，其他两个队可能有点紧张。 希望他们能趁早放开自己。 打出自己的正常状态。
韦神： （让自己）进步最快的方法就是不断地比赛。 这是我们（战队）第二场（世界级）比赛，联赛打得好就会进世界赛。 世界赛结束之后又会有个联赛，就会一个个循环，一年会循环三至四次比赛。
韦神： 我打这个（游戏）只有两三年。 但我打职业很久了，就是靠自己不断地练习。 天赋是敲门砖。 达标了之后就会试训，他跟你一起打，你就会直接了解这人的水平如何。
华闻TV： 有了很多粉丝后，反而没法安心打比赛。 你是如何调整自己的心态的？
韦神： 这个靠自己（去调节），（我）其实（觉得）真的没什么变化。 我们也不去想这些东西，主要还是比赛，你出名是打比赛，不出名也是打比赛，没什么区别，只是支持（你）的人多和少而已。 你不可能因为支持你的人少，你就不打比赛，所以不会太影响。
韦神： 在集体训练中，如果我觉得很烦躁的话，我会继续打 ，打到我不烦为止。 我打游戏的烦恼来自于我打不过别人，我就打到打得过别人为止。
华闻君 几小时前把现场采访视频发布在 @华闻周刊 的新浪微博之后，一大波电竞迷们纷纷在下面留言，为韦神、4AM以及其他中国战队加油打气。
（文 林卉卉 陈甲妮、采访 陈甲妮 、摄像/剪辑 冯依雯 、摄影 陈甲妮、部分图片来自受访者 ）
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