Now though, each episode features on one particular driver or team’s experience through the season.
This does make the narrative of the 2019 season somewhat what difficult to follow, particularly for the broader parts of the market that the series is looking to reach.
However, whilst zipping back and forth in the championship from episode to episode, we do gradually amble our way through to the end of the season, with reasonable clarity.
So, is Drive to Survive still worth watching? Whether you’re an avid race fan or a casual observer, the answer is yes.
True, anyone with a basic knowledge of grand prix racing will have to endure explanations of how F1 works every five minutes, but the level of detail and behind-the-scenes footage still makes it highly viewable.
For those new to F1, the drama, excitement and at times comedy of the series is certainly enough to make the series appeal to a wide market.
In short, there’s something for everyone.
Netflix Formula 1: Drive to Survive Season 2 synopsis – episode summary
Episode 1 “Lights Out”
This slow start to the series takes us through an introduction to the sport and its various teams and drivers. It particularly focuses on the main teams followed throughout the series, Haas, Renault and Red Bull.
Daniel Ricciardo is taken round the Renault factory, meeting and joking with his new team. However, the dream start turns sour when he drives over a concrete block on the first lap of 2019.
Episode 2 “Boiling Point”
Haas launches their car, as a new backer flies in via helicopter. The season quickly falls apart after it emerges the car particularly enjoys eating its own tyres. The American outfit is left surprised when William Storey, the highly eccentric entrepreneur selling a drink no-one has ever seen, pulls his backing mid-season.
The drivers then proceed to crash into each other, leaving all levels of management and team very sweary.
Episode 3 “Dogfight”
Latino heartthrob Carlos Sainz takes his charms to Woking, driving for McLaren. After a slow start, Sainz vamoses his way up the championship rankings, even finding time to spear some tropical fish.
Ep 4 Dark Days
Mercedes deals with the loss of Niki Lauda. The episode features German team’s atrocious German Grand Prix performance, where Lewis Hamilton’s flu seems to spread into a team-wide meltdown. Principal Toto Wolff gets very tetchy with reporters and Hamilton looks very sad after not winning an 86th GP.
Ep 5 “Great Expectations”
We see Christian Horner at home with Geri Halliwell, where his children express their love for every driver that doesn’t drive for Red Bull. Pierre Gasly immediately starts to feel the pressure as Daniel Ricciardo’s replacement. Famously empathetic boss Horner tries to give some encouragement.
Episode 6 “Raging Bulls”
We find out Pierre Gasly’s replacement Alexander Albon is a buddhist, that his mother was jailed for fraud and the family put their faith in religion to help him through the trials and tribulations of a junior racing career.
F2 driver Anthoine Hubert tragically loses his life in the support race at Spa-Francorchamps, with the collision witnessed by friends Pierre Gasly and Alex Albon.
Episode 7 “Seeing Red”
Sebastian Vettel and Charles Leclerc explain “what it means” to drive for Ferrari. Leclerc sends the tifosi into raptures by winning at Italian GP, Monza.
The US GP goes less well, with Vettel’s wheel falling off, as his Ferrari’s attempts a Reliant Robin impression. Vettel then disobeys teams orders twice and does some more crashing, leaving both drivers and team looking a bit moody.
Ep 8 “Musical Chairs”
Nico Hülkenberg is under pressure to keep his Renault seat. It emerges he has a performance clause in place to secure a contract extension.
Daniel Ricciardo does his best to put Hülkenberg off in a publicity session by saying his team-mate’s name in various comedy accents.
Then, during the race, the German successfully torpedoes all chance of this by burying his Renault in the wall at Hockenheim. Ricciardo does not take the blame.
Episode 9 “Blood, Sweat, Tears”
Williams is in a mess before the new season starts. It emerges that they don’t even have wheel nuts.
Technical director Paddy Lowe shuffles round the factory looking very sheepish and is then almost turned to stone by team boss Claire Williams when the team arrive at pre-season testing having neglected to bring an F1 car.
Ep 10 “Checkered Flag”
The teams arrive in Interlagos for the season finale. Albon is punted out whilst in second place. His mum looks very upset.
Gasly reaches the podium and shouts a lot, having gone fast in the slow car after he went slow in the fast car. Sainz drives from 20th to 3rd, giving McLaren its first podium in ages.
Hamilton celebrates with his team after having “crushed” the opposition through successful “war planning” (Toto’s words). Hamilton instructed not to spend too long thanking team for tireless work in case he’s late for lunch.