Mercedes duo admit Ferrari is "looking good"


Though the truth won't be clear until Saturday afternoon in Melbourne, it's fair to say that after five days of testing Ferrari is looking strong.

Monday's 168 laps brought Sebastian Vettel's three-day tally up to 435, while over his two days in the car Kimi Raikkonen managed 201, all without any significant issues.

Whereas Bottas currently heads the timesheets, ahead of Felipe Masa and Daniel Ricciardo, their times were set on ultrasoft, supersoft and ultrasofts respectively, whereas Vettel and Raikkonen - currently fourth and sixth - posted theirs, like Hamilton, on the softs.

While some will point to unknowns like fuel loads, one has to ask why Ferrari would want to play such games when, after all, it would only be fooling itself in the long run.

On the evidence thus far, not only is the Ferrari fast and reliable, it also appears to be working very well with its tyres, as was noticeable yesterday when Vettel was on his longer runs.

Early days, but Bottas and Hamilton both feel that the big threat heading to Melbourne isn't so much Red Bull but the prancing horse.

"I think Ferrari are looking very good," said Bottas at the conclusion of yesterday's action, "they seem to be consistent and fast. We shouldn't underestimate them or Red Bull."

"Ferrari are possibly the favourites," added Hamilton. "We can't take our eyes off them they are doing such a great job.

"And Red Bull look like they're going quite quick today," he admitted. "It is going to be close at the first race for sure."

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Published: 08/03/2017
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