Formula One - The Best Drivers?

Dear Topspeed,
Are Formula One drivers the best drivers in the world?

Tim W. from Los Angeles, California

Hi Tim,

The drivers of Formula One are only some of the best drivers in the world. There are many racing drivers not in Formula One that are just as good. Unfortunately, due to the limited availability of seats with F1 racing teams, few racing drivers will ever get the chance to compete in a Formula One Grand Prix race. Currently, there are eleven teams with two racing drivers each. In years past, there have been F1 racing seasons with fewer teams and even fewer available seats. Many teams also retain the same drivers year after year, including their test drivers. This makes it very difficult for other drivers to break into F1.

Talent, skill, popularity, sponsorship and being in the right place at the right time are some of the elements that determine who gets to race in Formula One. The sad truth is that many deserving race car drivers will never race in Formula One due to factors beyond their control. Formula One is widely regarded as the pinnacle of racing achievement. Even so, there have been many drivers throughout F1 history that weren't so great and never won a single F1 race. In general though, Formula One drivers are more skilled than most racing drivers and in my opinion, the driver that wins the Formula One Championship is the single best driver in the world.

 
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