Hakkinen analyses Red Bull: 'Then it becomes difficult to keep focus'


mika Hakkinen considers mercedes and analyses red bull

Mika Hakkinen is expecting a strong performance from Mercedes in Saudi Arabia. At the first Bahrain Grand Prix, the difference between Max Verstappen and George Russell was almost 50 seconds but on the fast street circuit, the German team should be closer with the W15. At least, that is what Hakkinen suspects.

"We will see a stronger race performance in Jeddah from Mercedes," said the two-time world champion, directly explaining why the difference with Red Bull was tens of seconds last week. "They lost a lot of lap time in Bahrain because they had to increase the cooling on their cars, something which also affected to two Mercedes-powered Williams."

It is notable, however, that it is currently warmer in Saudi Arabia than in Bahrain, so Mercedes will have to devise a solution to avoid a repeat. As in Bahrain, most sessions take place in the evening under artificial lights.

"Lewis Hamilton took pole position and won the first Saudi Arabian Grand Prix back in 2021. While we fully expect Red Bull to remain at the front, watch out for Mercedes as they unlock more race speed and take the fight to Ferrari. The great news for Lewis and team mate George Russell is that their new car is much more predictable to drive, a good step forward after the disappointments of the last two years," Hakkinen said on Unibet.

Horner case

Hakkinen also briefly mentioned Red Bull Racing. Who is staying, who is leaving? These are all rumours currently circulating. The 55-year-old Finn cannot say much about it because he simply does not know the ins and outs of the Austrian racing stable either.

"What I do know is that stability and harmony are essential in any team wanting to keep its position at the top of Formula 1. You need good, strong leadership and fantastic team work, everyone pulling together, solving problems, beating the competition.  The moment the leadership, drivers or team becomes distracted, the focus becomes more difficult to sustain."