The comparison is always with Hamilton though, since Bottas obviously seldom maximizes the car's potential, as Albon didn't with the RB16 and Perez doesn't with the RB16B. Last year at Barcelona, Hamilton controlled the race from start to finish, and eventually finished some 24 seconds ahead of Verstappen. If that isn't a huge advantage, I don't know what is.godlameroso wrote: ↑Mon May 03, 2021 10:03 pm.7, when RBR still had their early season instability, and thus couldn't produce a representative qualifying lap. Look at the race pace, if Mercedes had such a huge advantage why couldn't Bottas keep up with or overtake Verstappen? Speaking of foolish confidence.Juzh wrote: ↑Mon May 03, 2021 9:14 pmMercedes had so much advantage in barcelona last year they didn't even use strat 2 for Q3 and still pulled 0.8s lead in quali. I know this year will be closer but such blind confidence you're exhibiting is foolish, sorry.godlameroso wrote: ↑Mon May 03, 2021 7:53 pm
Last year Hamilton had a .3 second advantage over Verstappen in Barcelona. The gap was closer there than it was in Portimao. If the trend continues and RBR has gained ~.4 on Mercedes it should put them slightly ahead. In any case, overtaking in Barcelona is hard and track position will be important, so qualifying will be key.
Last year Verstappen could sort of hang with Hamilton in the race but Verstappen chewed up his tires quicker than Hamilton. Even if Mercedes is kinder on its tires, Verstappen should have the edge in pace. Bahrain turns 5 6 and 7 showed us that the RBR can carry more speed in the corners, and that trend has not changed in Imola or Portimao.
There are more of those types of corners in Barcelona, and with the reprofiled turn 10, it's less of a sharp hair pin, and more a speed carrying corner.
Last year it was a two stop race, I'm guessing it may be a one stopper this year, or an aggressive two stopper.
That of course doesn't mean it will be the same this year. It's gonna be super close, with a slight advantage for Red Bull on paper at the moment. But what should worry Red Bull is that they brought a pretty big update package to Portimao and still were beaten by Merc, who are yet to introduce their first big package... which could well come this weekend.