@DennisvandenBos: I don't think so. Mercedes still can't decide how many tokens Renault and Ferrari spend - which influences how many Honda gets. Their main reason for doing so was that it wants to start the season with the best power unit possible. Plus, any upgrades you make later in the season only apply to unsued engines, meaning if you need an "old" engine at any stage of the season due to reliability issues you'll have to switch back to an un-upgraded one.
@McNeilNtandoMdluli: Belgium 2008. Great race. Lewis had it stripped from him afterwards by the FIA, however.
@mfbull: But do you have Venezuelan oil money?
@Khalid@dxb: I have no idea what the record is for that but McLaren hasn't caused THAT many red flags. Usually it's just ended the day with a whimper in the garage.
@mfbull: It was a hallmark of Senna as well.
@Vinayak: There are still a lot of contractual issues to overcome but it makes sense that Bernie still wants there to be a race there.
@Efranov: Ricciardo stopped at the end of the pit lane earlier this morning with an ERS problem. We haven't seen them since.
The circuit's official Twitter account is stepping on my groove. Bottas improves again and the benchmark is... well, 1:23.859 as you can see.
Bottas is out on the super-soft tyre.
@mfbull: You can see where he's coming from. It's a tough job to just jump into a car without much of a reference point.
@AbhishekChoudhury: Seems so. I wonder which game they're playing?
Bottas' first super-soft run is a 1:23.063. Two tenths quicker than Massa did yesterday. Seems Bottas made a mistake in the first sector, too, so maybe he has more in the pocket.
That super-soft tyre from Williams is still slower than Mercedes' best ... on softs. Rosberg set a 1:22.782 on Friday.
@Fritz: Not by a long shot. I think Lotus went into the season last year with under 100 laps.
Perez and Versteppen's times were set on softs.
Looking at Bottas' time is pretty mind-blowing. If fuel loads are all the same, and that was a full qualifying simulation from Williams, then Mercedes may well have another second in its pocket. We haven't seen its super-soft run yet (and we may not, if reports are to be believed).
It's hard to compare as the track temperature is far from ideal but the clear conclusion from this test is Mercedes is damn quick. The rest may be fighting for scraps again, at least at the start of the season. Sorry Ferrari fans - you were all so happy a week ago.
@Polo_24: Last we heard the team was in the garage so it could run system checks.