F1: Ferrari’s (NYSE:RACE) Vettel Believes MercedesAMG has Pace Advantage
Thursday, speaking on ahead of this weekend’s Bahrain Grand Prix, Ferrari (NYSE:RACE) driver Sebastian Vettel claimed MercedesAMG had a pace advantage of up to 0.4 secs at the start of the season.
MercedesAMG believes its F 1 engine now holds no advantage over that of its rival Ferrari, according to Lewis Hamilton.
MercedesAMG has been F1’s dominant force in the V6 turbo-hybrid era that start in Y 2014, but Mr. Hamilton said his team had now been caught by Ferrari in terms of engine power.
Asked about the advantage Mr. Vettel estimated MercedesAMG had, Mr. Hamilton replied: “I do not have a figure, the team has not mentioned a figure to me.
“They said in qualifying we think that we are power-wise equal to them. They made a really big improvement. And [the team said] that in the race we might have a slight edge on them.
“It’s hard to say from one race, they had a different run profile particularly in the race they were doing something different fuelling wise.
“You’ll get a much better idea over the coming races.”
Ferrari is understood to have made a 10bhp gain with its Y 2018 F1 engine having originally set a minimum target of matching its Y 2017 power.
Its car was quicker than MercedesAMG on the straights in Australia.
Mr. Hamilton still enjoyed an advantage of more than 0.6s in qualifying and was comfortably quicker in the race as well until a mid-race safety car handed Mr. Vettel the Chequered Flag.
“I am still happy with it,” Hamilton said. “But I guess it’s that I started first and finished second. You never ever want to move backwards.
“That is difficult for us all but everyone in the team felt the same pain. After the race we all got together and sat and had a drink.
“I come here really strong and positive and good direction about how to move forward.”
The Hot Shoes
Sebastian Vettel: The 4X world champion had a great display in testing with his SF71H, setting the fastest time overall with a lap at 1:17.182. After winning the season opener for Scuderia Ferrari, Mr. Vettel is already ahead of his rivals in points and that gives him a great boost for this race under the lights
Last year in Bahrain, Mr. Vettel ended a run of dominance by MercedesAMG that stretched back to Y 2014 by beating Mr. Hamilton to the Chequered Flag.
Bahrain, the night race in the desert.
The evening in Sakhir will be the 2nd race of 21 races on the 2018 F1 schedule.
The weekend runs from Friday, 6 April to Sunday, 8 April with free practice one staring at 14:00 local time Friday.
|NYSE:RACE||121.34||5 April 2018||0.90||120.92||121.8||120.54||343,609|
|HeffX-LTN Analysis for RACE:||Overall||Short||Intermediate||Long|
|Neutral (-0.20)||Bearish (-0.27)||Neutral (-0.17)||Neutral (-0.15)|