This could yet be another close fought contest between Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso. The Spaniard is clearly the best driver on the grid and has been almost since his entry into the sport. Still, Vettel will probably have the superior car again and look for him to secure his fourth world title on the way to surpassing his compatriot Michael Schumacher as the most successful driver in the sport’s history.
Prediction: 1. Sebastian Vettel 2. Fernando Alonso 3. Kimi Raikonnen
I think it may be a little closer than before. Massa will probably hold Ferrari back but I think Lotus will be able to push Red Bull all the way as long as Romain Grosjean doesn’t crash out on too many opening laps. However, Red Bull have far and away the best combined driving power as well as the best car. Mercedes could also be a factor with Hamilton and Rosberg reaching their prime soon.
Prediction: 1. Red Bull 2. Lotus 3. Ferrari
The Best Driver
As I have mentioned before, I believe Alonso to be the most talented and consistent driver in Formula 1. Lewis Hamilton is extremely competitive and is masterful when overtaking or protecting his position. Both Hamilton and Vettel are the best qualifiers whilst Kimi Raikonnen is probably the second best all-round driver after Alonso.
My prediction for best performance over the upcoming season by the driver (getting the best out of the car): 1. Fernando Alonso 2. Kimi Raikonnen 3. Lewis Hamilton
The Surprise Driver
I think this could be a big year for German drivers not named Sebastian Vettel as both Adrien Sutil and Nico Rosberg face huge pressure from their teams. Sutil has been at Force India for a while now and has been relatively successful but Paul Di Resta has shown glimpses of what he can do. This will hopefully spur Sutil on to be even better than his last few years have shown. Meanwhile, at Mercedes, Rosberg will in no doubt be happy that his friend Lewis Hamilton has joined his team. This will attract sponsors as well as better engineers, thus giving him a better car to play with. I think he is a very talented driver but will have to show more consistency if he wants to remain with the team once it starts its push to be elite.
Prediction for the biggest surprise driver of the season: 1. Nico Rosberg 2. Adrien Sutil 3. Daniel Ricciardo
The Let Down
Whilst Sergio Perez is an extremely talented individual who reminds me a lot of Felipe Massa when he first came up onto the scene, he looks as though he may have been moved to one of the elite teams just a smidgen too early. Unfortunately this can have catastrophic consequences for your future career so I do hope that this does not happen.
Prediction for biggest let down: 1. Sergio Perez 2. Jean-Eric Vergne 3. Pastor Maldonado
Red Bull are always great at qualifying but I fear that they may have met their match with the Lotus team. Since Renault have altered their name, their future has been looking up. After nabbing the best available driver they have moved from strength to strength and look like contenders. Mercedes could do well in this too but that would probably be down to Hamilton’s skill at the flying lap.
Prediction: 1. Lotus 2. Red Bull 3. Mercedes
Best Tyre Management
This has to be the most important part of F1 strategy nowadays and Red Bull are formidable in this department. Adrian Newey helps design the cars to have maximum efficiency whilst Horner and company devise the best strategy for the day. However, last year I thought that Lotus had a massive edge in this department and should retain this advantage coming into this year.
Prediction: 1. Lotus 2. Red Bull 3. Ferrari
Best Race Pace
There is only one contender for this title and it has to be Red Bull. They’ve won the last three Constructors’ and Drivers’ Championships! The team to be beaten, Horner will make sure that Red Bull are right up there challenging for glory once more.
Prediction: 1. Red Bull 2. Ferrari 3. Mercedes