Traditionally, fans miss F1 pre-season testing which is a big shame. This is a chance for you to get insight on your team’s chances and at least enjoy its livery for the first time. Well, thank God for cable and the internet because you can still get tidbits from Jerez and Barcelona to form an opinion before Australian GP sets things rolling.
The 2015 preseason testing has again lived to its billing as another silly season where gossip flies in and about. So, what did you learn from this year’s preseason testing? Here are some thoughts:
1. Williams FW37 is a Revelation
Say what you will but you will have to give credit to Massa and Bottas for pushing the Mercedes-powered engine to the top of preseason testing. Yes, pundits will say that preseason testing doesn’t count for much, but you have to concur that the consistency of this car is impressive. If there is a team you can bet on to chase after Mercedes, Williams has to be top on your list.
2. McLaren-Honda MP4-30 Stuttering and Alonso’s Hazy Crash
The partnership between the two teams in making the McLaren-Honda MP4-30 was being hailed as a precursor to glory days. No lesser person than Ron Dennis the boss said this, but even before preseason testing the Hybrid engine was already developing complications.
In pretesting, things got from bad to worse when Alonso was involved in an accident which no one seems to have details about. Picture this; Vettel was behind Alonso and commented that the accident looked strange as the car was still facing forward. The speed at which Alonso was rushed to hospital is also baffling and the contradictory updates from the team add more fire to speculation.
3. Untouchable Mercedes W06
2014 was Mercedes PETRONAS’s year, but if testing is anything to go by, you can bet this is still the car to beat. Hamilton and Rosberg are competitive drivers and they pushed the new car to the limit to gain the most laps. The drivers were able to overcome illness to give impressive mileage and this is one team going to Albert Park oozing confidence.
4. Ferrari SF-15T Amazing Package
When a 4 time championship title winner praises a car then you know there is something good in it. Vettel was all smiles, despite minor hiccups, and with decent testing times, you can bet Scuderias will be up there with Williams behind Mercedes.
5. Carmen Jorda a Lotus Development Driver, Really?
You might not have heard about Carmen and you are right because there is nothing to know about her really. So, why did Lotus sign her up? It is all about the check which in turn gives F1 a bad reputation. Gone are the days when raw talent was valued. Simple statistics; in 3 years of GP3 racing, Carmen never made it to the points even once.
6. Marussia is Back for Australia GP
Well, the team might not have tested their car, but the news is just good for F1. Their interim car built to comply with FIA rules will be used initially and a new design will be introduced later.
Whether it is the new long, pointy nose or the confidence of Verstappen and Carlo Sainz Jr. in the new car, there is no denying Toro Rosso is a delight to watch. Well, the car made for an impressive show in Jerez and Barcelona, and you can only hope these rookie drivers can prove the old geezers that talent can also deliver some points.
So much happens in preseason testing period that you can’t just afford to miss it. As you wait for the Australian GP, why not take a glimpse of more intrigues from this exciting pre-season period?