We are just a few hours from the first free practice which will initiate the third round of the Formula 1 World Championship on the Melbourne track in Australia.
It does not need to be said that the hunt will open for the Red Bulls of Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez. They are getting ready to experience a calm season, relegating all their rivals to a secondary role. In the first two rounds they gave proof of an imposing strength to which it will not be easy to find a solution. Their calm and security also show through in the fact that the drivers do not obey the orders received. Ferrari and Mercedes have already stated that starting from Imola they will bring a car with many new developments. It has to be seen if this is enough.
The engineers led by Newey have found something incredible that makes the RB19 perform on all the sectors of the track, as well as making the tyres work very well. I am not a technician but watching it race it can be seen that at some points the rear is very low and in others decidedly higher. They give the impression of having found an infallible technical solution that recalls active suspensions. No other car, up till now, manages to replicate this.
If there is a certain equilibrium in qualifying – we have seen that the grid enclosed within a gap of barely 1”8 – the gap increases enormously in the race. Compared to last season’s cars Red Bull managed to improve by about 7-8 tenths of a second almost nullifying the efforts of the other teams. In a situation such as this it is not surprising to see McLaren still on zero points because it really takes very little to stay out of the points.
And in these hours, with a note released in Melbourne, the Federation has decided to ban the celebrations of the teams on the wall for safety reasons. But that is another story…
Gian Carlo Minardi