As the sun set on winter testing, Mercedes AMG Petronas left Barcelona feeling good about their form. they should feel positive as their drivers topped the time sheets the last two days of testing. As anyone in Formula One will tell you, testing is hard to read or make predictions from but Red Bull’s Christian Horner feels that the hype around MErcedes may not be unfounded. Horner told Reuters:
“Their car looks quick, and with Lewis joining the team they will naturally take a step forward. He is worth lap time, which is why they signed him.
“I’m sure they’re going to be a factor this season. Their challenge will be sustaining it over the whole season as they’ve been quick the last couple of years at the beginning – winning the third race in China last year.”
One of the reasons Horner feels Mercedes may have come on song is their new driver Lewis Hamilton. Lewis can make a bad car look good in the worst of situations thus is his mad skills behind the wheel. Horner feels Lewis may add a whole new dimension to the teams hopes:
“Lewis, as we all know, is a world-class driver, and he is going to raise their level, and they will be a factor this year,” said Horner.
There is no doubt Hamilton will place the Mercedes in the best possible finishing position but is that enough? If it were just Hamilton, maybe not but his teammate Nico Rosberg set the fastest time ont eh final day in Barcelona and has done very well in testing. If Mercedes has clawed serious performance from 2013 chassis, then both drivers could be in for a points haul.
The key, as Horner points out, is year-long development. That war is continually raging and if Mercedes can keep on pace with developing the car while the rest of the team is working on the 2014 chassis, then they could stand a chance of winning and competing.
Where do you reckon Mercedes will finish this year? Too much hype or will Lewis and Nico launch Mercedes into a championship contender?