Rivalry between Red Bull & Mercedes could bring Ferrari small advantage this year

27-01-2021 17:23 | Updated: 27-01-2021 20:03
by GPblog.com
F1 News
Rivalry between Red Bull & Mercedes could bring Ferrari small advantage this year

Mercedes have been unbeaten since the start of the hybrid era in 2014, but there is a chance of a change in the rankings when the new rules are introduced. The next major changes are in early 2022 when the cars are simplified. In 2026, the engine regulations will be thoroughly overhauled and this will provide opportunities. Still, the advantage Mercedes had back then will not happen again.

Started well on time

This is what Mattia Binotto says when asked in an interview with Motorsport-Total.com. The advantage Mercedes had back then was that they started developing the engine well in advance. In fact, they were dependent on the new regulations, but that is not the case this time, as there are restrictions on developments for 2022.

"Mercedes was clever enough back then to develop the new power unit well before anyone else," says the team boss. For Ferrari, change cannot come soon enough, given they are competing in the midfield and that is not where they belong. The problem, however, is that this time they were not allowed to start well in advance. Only since 1 January this year have they been allowed to work on the 2022 car, so the run-up is the same for every team.

Full focus on 2022

Putting the full focus this year on next year's car might help, but even so, a direct comparison with then is not possible. The "biggest difference" from then, is "if anything, it is a big rule change. The timing, however, is very different." That timing is of course in the more limited time in terms of development. Nevertheless, Ferrari does have an advantage.

They can't fight for the lead anyway, so it makes more sense for them to focus on 2022. Red Bull Racing, however, is still pushing hard to beat Mercedes this year and the two sides are naturally reacting to each other. This could distract from the development for 2022, where Ferrari does not have that rivalry. So this could give Ferrari a slight edge.

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