F1: Mercedes on a roll but Ferrari, Red Bull unimpressive
Zee Media Bureau/Rajdeep Saha
New Delhi: Mercedes have set 2014 on fire and are at the moment looking to pocket the constructor`s championship. They also see one of their two drivers being a world champion. Nico Rosberg leads the points tally and his teammate Lewis Hamilton is on second place. With the latter taking the pole position at the Spanish GP, the Briton looks to pip Rosberg and gain supremacy at the top.
Lewis Hamilton won three races in a row after Rosberg`s victory at the season opening Australian GP. Such has been the dominance of the Mercedes duo, that apart from having the best car on the track they have driven smartly to gain an unassailable lead. It has been a fairytale start to the season and that has compelled Hamilton to acknowledged his team for giving him the fastest car thus helping him dominate all sessions from Friday to Sunday in the four races so far.
There is hardly anything that separates the Mercedes duo. The third place on the podium has seen different drivers in all four races. Surprisingly Red Bull`s Sebastian Vettel and Daniel Ricciardo have finished third on one occasion each. Ferrari`s Fernando Alonso was on the podium in China and apart from that both teams have failed to live up to expectations.
With Kimi Raikkonen`s move from Lotus to Ferrari this season, the red brigade was touted to be the strongest and was seen as favourites to win the championship but Raikkonen`s performance has been below par even as compared to his Lotus days.
Red Bull too have disappointed and have faced too many difficulties with their car. With Renault searching for answers to provide a superior engine to Red Bull, Vettel has looked awful with his car. Electrical and gear-box issues have summed up his time in Spain so far over two days and he starts on 10th position on Sunday. Lotus who finished third last season are yet to get off the mark.
There have been some positives as well during the course of this season. Daniel Ricciardo has repaid the faith shown in him by Red Bull after Mark Webber`s retirement from F1. Ricciardo has been better than Vettel and this will be a major boost to the youngster. Force India and Williams have hit the target where Lotus and McLaren have failed. Nico Hulkenberg`s reunion with Force India and Sergio Perez`s switch has seen the team on third in the table and most importantly above Ferrari.
With Mercedes looking to complete a fifth one-two atop, Ferrari and Red Bull will hope to fill a place on the podium and occupy four places within the top 10.