Tuesday, August 18, 2015

1 Racing Mind 2015 Formula 1 Mid-season Report Card: Mercedes AMG

Photo Credit: Mercedes AMG

Mercedes AMG

Team Score: A-

Lewis Hamilton: A
Nico Rosberg: A-

For the most part in the case of Mercedes AMG, it seems like reposting the 2014 midseason report would have sufficed. The team's pace in qualifying and under race conditions has largely been unmatched by other teams during the 2015 Formula 1 race season. Defending drivers’ champion Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg have combined to win eight races. Qualifying for the first ten grand prix races reflects pure dominance for the Mercedes AMG team as the F1 W06 Hybrid race car has sat on pole for every event.

Again this season, much of the team’s focus appears to be around Lewis Hamilton. Hamilton has won five races and nine of the ten poles for Mercedes AMG for 2015. Also just last year, Nico Rosberg has rallied to win twice. After the Hungarian Grand Prix, the German driver is only 21 points behind his reigning champion teammate. As is often the case in Formula 1 organizations with two strong drivers competing for the championship, the relationship between Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton has appeared tense on the track on occasions.

In the latest two races, some cracks have shown up in the nearly bulletproof armour Mercedes AMG wore. Poor starts by both Hamilton and Rosberg in the British Grand Prix and the Hungarian Grand Prix have actually cost them their familiar leading positions. While the effort was able to overcome the Williams Martini Racing, Mercedes AMG’s performance in Hungary was among the team’s worst in a long time. For the first time since the 2013 season, the poor start and a series of mistakes during the course of the event resulted in neither one of the Silver Arrows placing on the podium for a Formula 1 race. While Mercedes-Benz fans would celebrate the continuation of the brand’s modern dynasty in the sport, many others are eager to see an opening of a more competitive 2015 Formula 1 season.

Ingredients for Second-Half of 2015:

As apparent by the British Grand Prix and Hungarian Grand Prix races, the Mercedes AMG team cannot afford to get complacent on successes earlier in the season. Approaching the Belgian Grand Prix, it will also mark an anniversary where we saw the inter-team rivalry between Hamilton and Rosberg reach critical mass last year. Head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport Toto Wolff will once again have a struggle on his hands if the championship battle comes down to his two team drivers.

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