Will Lewis Hamilton win the 8th world title? Mercedes struggled during the pre-season testing, not a good sign of times ahead?
Mercedes has hardly ever shown strong output during the pre-season testing, at least during their reign in all these years, but you won’t expect the Formula 1 powerhouse to struggle like this on the track.
And that is what worrying Mercedes, as they looked out of shape during the pre-season testing over the last weekend. On day one, the gearbox complications forced Valtteri Bottas to be at the last of the pecking order.
Meanwhile, Lewis Hamilton struggled in the sandstorm with multiple slips; the reigning world champion opened day two for Mercedes and ended up slipping into the gravel. Things remained the same on day three when Hamilton once again slipped at the final turn.
Mercedes’ officials held a poker face, showing no emotion of disappointment, indicating that the things are still in hand. But the biggest concern would be Red Bull’s spectacular show.
I enjoy trying to guesstimate a pecking order after testing. Very tricky to do this time with track conditions changing so much between day & night but here we go :
AlphaTauri / Mclaren
Ferrari / Aston Martin
Just a guess! 🤷🏽♂️🤷🏽♂️
— Karun Chandhok (@karunchandhok) March 15, 2021
The Milton-Keynes based team couldn’t have asked for a better weekend in Bahrain, irrespective of how Mercedes performed, as Max Verstappen showed his brilliance and Sergio Perez also looked comfortable, attracting praises by Hamilton over their progress in 2021.
Will Lewis Hamilton win the 8th world title?
Despite an amazing outing by Red Bull, Helmut Marko and Christian Horner are not dismissing Mercedes’ title claim. However, Mercedes concern doesn’t look like a case of sandbagging.
Where they are deliberately trying to hide their innovations and developments, instead, it conspicuously looks like a case of poor rear-end balance as confessed by the Mercedes entourage.
Mercedes’ Andrew Shovlin has also confessed that Red Bull’s pace presently is faster than the Brackley based team. It would be safe to say that even if Mercedes hasn’t yielded its dominance, the gap has been further reduced between the two.
In our opinion, Hamilton still steps in as the favourite for 2021, but it would really heat things if Red Bull wins the Bahrain Grand Prix.