ferkan wrote:Formula 1 is not staying the same though. Next year, new rules. Completely different aero rules apply, and while PUs stay the same that is no longer differentional factor with Mercedes and Ferrari. Plus, there is no more tokens for next year therefore everything will be pretty open. I actually think Merc will look to completely decimate field as early as possible. Not only because that would be brilliant closing to domination in 2014-2016 Formula 1, but also because as early they get maximum amount of points the earlier they can start to work on next years car.
Your reasoning might have applied last two years, but not now.
I am still yet to hear an even more convincing argument in why you'd want to show more than you have to.
PS: Yes, 2017 will shuffle the order a bit, but there's no guarantee that the 'headstart' that Mercedes has capitalized over since the V6T will not carry over in some form into 2017 and beyond as well. The chances are probably small, but that's precisely why, as the dominant team, you'd want to mask every potential you have.
If you apply that reasoning to the PU for instance; Right now, we have 4 different engine manufacturers pursuing 3-4 different design philosophies that have an impact on cooling, how much power can be achieved and somewhat also influences the aero of the car. Lets assume for a moment that Mercedes did get it right with their approach and that it's the design choice with the most potential. By not showing its true potential and keeping it close, the other manufacturers might be mistaken into believing that their design choices are competitive (or can be), or at least that any difference can be closed by other factors, like aero. Assuming that one design choice is the 'perfect solution' with the most potential, you wouldn't want others to realize that and pursuit the same design choices by copying you. Better to keep them on their design paths while hoping that they will never quite catch up.
The longer it takes them to realize that and catch up, the further and further you can make gains on your product and the bigger the headstart you have.
You are reading to much into it. Does Merc still have something in the tank? Yes, they do, but so do other teams. But they are not running slowly, neither they are purposely sandbagging. They have done their race sim, it was fast and it turned alot heads (like when Rosberg posted 23'0'' time). That was until Ferrari posted similar race pace sim , but since Ferrari appears to be much closer that means Merc has to have much more in hand and that means they are going to push only when Ferrari comes close enough and then make big gap again. I don't buy that.
I think we have seen what Merc has. They still have nice advantage, especially on medium tires, but there is logical reason why Ferrari should be closer, like there was last year at the same time.
IMO you are giving far less credit to people working in F1 then they deserve. There are literally thousands of highly experienced and knowledgeable engineers working at these teams. Merc surely cannot make them all go into opposite direction with simple trick like you describe, I don't find that plausible at all.
Last 2 years of Mercedes domination can be described pretty easily without resorting to some perfect cooling/turbo arrangement. Not only because the same arrangement is used by their customers, that are even further of the pace then some teams with 60-70hp deficit on engine side, but also because current gap is pretty much expected when looking at 2 frontruners.
Mercedes put whole lot of money and time to dominate in V6 era of Formula. They nailed EVERY part of the car. Their aero is, alongside RBR, best in class. And RBR in their heyday had easily half a second over next best only on aero side, so there is no reason for Merc not to have similar gap. Add to that the fact that their engine is class leading and their chassis and suspension have proved to be top as well, then that gap is easily explained with saying that they did damn good job on entire car.
So yea, I don't expect Merc to hold on if they have big advantage. They will want to embarrass everyone if they can, thats who they are and thats what everyone else would do in their place. This is F1, if they have 1 second on the rest of the pack they will show it, put that into commercial and giggle like a school girls. Next year completely new rules, no tokens and there is really no point in playing cat and mouse.