With the opening round of the 2017 F1 Season a few days away, Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull Racing are busy trading the ‘favourite’ tag with each other. All this while Honda are making claims that they could get over their issues by Australia. Let’s hope that Honda walk the talk, finally, or in F1 terms, race the talk because pace is clearly lacking.
Despite their lack of pace and reliability, given the sheer humour generated around the Mclaren-Honda team, they could be the fan favourite for 2017. Add to this Fernando Alonso’s humour driven criticism and hope that a Mercedes seat could be his in 2018. For that to happen, we’re not sure if Lewis Hamilton has to agree or the much-powerful Toto Wolff?
For the opening round, there are a few million dollar questions. Will Mclaren-Honda manage to complete the full race distance? In pre-season testing, they could only manage 11 laps at a stretch – lesser than the duration of a local karting series. In this week’s episode of the Inside Line F1 Podcast, the hosts wonder who pays Mclaren-Honda’s growing towing van charges, Mclaren or Honda? Finally, will Mercedes unleash more pace and leave the unexpectedly fast Ferrari behind?
We’re hoping Red Bull Racing, who’ve been surprisingly quiet and yet to show pace, unveil a car that befits an Adrian Newey car. Let’s hope they’ve got pace enough to allow Max Verstappen use his new party trick on the podium and give Daniel Ricciardo a chance to win at home. By the way, if you’re at the Albert Park Circuit this weekend, do check out the Daniel Ricciardo stand and merchandise.
Lastly, can Mclaren switch power unit suppliers mid-season? How can they and what will the impact be? Why did Bernie Ecclestone jump off the Liberty Media bandwagon? Is Lance Stroll mended has Pastor Maldonado ways? And with an F2, F3 and F2.5, Liberty Media will need to resort to numerology as they go about re-branding the juniour series. Tune in!
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