The Spanish GP 2019

The Spanish GP 2019 at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya is over and we have a 5th straight 1-2 finish for Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 racing team, with Lewis taking the win followed by Valtteri in second. This is a major achievement and unique record set by this team, one which no other F1 team was able to achieve since inception. This is a remarkable achievement and a feat very difficult to achieve for sure. Many F1 experts and pundits expected this year to be a runaway success for Ferrari after the winter testing. But, Mercedes have turned things around drastically and once again they are the team to beat this season.

Lewis Hamilton was able to pip his teammate and fast approaching Sebastian Vettel to take the lead of the 1st corner and never looked back. Valtteri took second and Max Verstappen was able to secure the final podium place. Ferrari have no answer to the pace shown by the Mercedes in Spain. We did expect a safety car this year with betting odds of 1.90, and as predicted, we did get the safety car for the 4th successive year. The collision between Lance Stroll and Lando Norris brought the safety car.

Mercedes and Verstappen were the standout performers, along with Haas and Carlos Sainz who has managed to maintain his good run of form at his home GP. Ferrari did not have answers to the pace shown by the two Mercedes drivers and Verstappen. Sebastian and Charles finished 4th and 5th respectively. Haas did find their drivers touch each other at turn 2, which might have got their team principal Guenther Steiner a bit edgy as usual, but the duo did not end up damaging their cars. On the contrary, they got the first double point finish for the team, which is a great sign for a team that was struggling in the past few races.

Toto Rosso on the other hand was the only team that did not bring any major upgrade to Barcelona, but they were still running up the field during practice and had a decent Qualifying with both drivers finishing 9th and 12th. The race pace was also real strong for both drivers but the pitstop double stack blunder cost them the race and they were not able to achieve a double point finish, which at one stage was on the cards. RedBull are fighting it out with Ferrari for the second spot in the constructors and as team principal Christian Horner suggests, they are the second quickest car in race trim behind Mercedes.

Daniel Ricciardo was really frustrated with his team’s strategy calls that allowed Carlos Sainz to finish 8th even after Daniel overtook him on the track. The pit stop strategy call to put Daniel on the hard compound and Carlos on the medium changed things around drastically. As stated by Daniel, the team had pace to finish much higher than 12th. His teammate Nico finished just 3 seconds behind Daniel in 13th after starting from pit lane. Similarly, the two Alfa Romeo drivers Kimi and Antonio finished 14th and 16th respectively and this is the first race this season that the team has not finished in points. This is the worst race finish for Kimi at this track as well. Williams’ struggle continue with the last two race finishes at 17th and 18th. As predicted in the inter team battle, Kimi, Verstappen, Sergio and Russel all finished ahead of their teammates. This accumulator betting odd was 2.60. With the second and final in-season testing scheduled at Barcelona for 2 days, teams have got valuable track time in-season to understand what went wrong and how to change things around to beat their competitors.