Double-world champion Mika Hakkinen is banking on a tighter fight at the front between Mercedes, Red Bull and Ferrari in the second part of the 2019 season.
The Silver Arrows squad’s supremacy was finally undermined in the last few races, courtesy of Red Bull and Max Verstappen’s two wins.
Hakkinen sees Ferrari also coming to the fore after the summer break, at power circuits Spa and Monza.
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“They should be back in contention in Spa and Monza, where their straight-line speed will matter, but it is clear that their car is just not competitive from race to race,” Hakkinen wrote in his Unibet column last week.
“Not only have they been unable to beat Mercedes they are now behind the Red Bull Honda package in terms of competitiveness.”
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Hakkinen is expecting the fight up front between F1’s usual suspects to take on a different complexion, with Mercedes no longer the de facto favourite at each race.
“The second part of this year’s World Championship should be quite different from the first,” added the former McLaren charger.
“I expect Ferrari to be pushing really hard for a win in Spa and Monza, but Red Bull and Honda will also be continuing to develop their car and Mercedes cannot take their domination for granted any longer.
“We have just had four really exciting Formula 1 races and I fully expect we have many more to look forward to before Championship ends in Abu Dhabi on December 1st.”
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