Martin Brundle reckons that, even though Mercedes have won every single race so far in the 2019 Formula 1 season, they still can be even faster, and believes they are ultimately ‘playing’ with Ferrari, who are desperately trying to compete.
The Silver Arrows have been completely dominant this campaign, and have secured the win in every GP from the opener in Australia to France at the weekend.
Brundle thinks that Mercedes, ominously, could arguably be quicker.
“One of the more remarkable yet most annoying facts was that on lap 53 Lewis Hamilton on twenty-nine lap old tyres delivered a time of 1:32.764. On the same lap, on fresh tyres, Sebastian Vettel determinedly stole the fastest lap world championship point with a 1.32.740,” Brundle wrote in his Sky Sports column.
“Hamilton and Mercedes are just playing with the opposition like a cat with a ball of wool. I'm not saying it's easy, because F1 is not, but they have reserves of speed yet and we are not seeing-flat out racing.
“Which makes it even more painful that Ferrari took many of their updated aero parts off the car because they weren't better.
“They didn't close the gap to a cruising Mercedes around Paul Ricard. Vettel and Charles Leclerc drove fine races, the latter almost catching Valtteri Bottas on the final lap after the Virtual Safety Car was deployed due to an errant bollard. Which rather sums up the race.”
Hamilton’s nearest challenger is team-mate, Bottas, and Brundle has urged the Finn to find his early season form again.
“Bottas needs to urgently find that guy with wild eyes who I interviewed as the winner at the end of the Australian Grand Prix, and invite him back into the cockpit,” he continued.
“Lewis has the clear upper hand and he hasn't even reached the summer break yet, after which he tends to get really fast.”
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