Lewis Hamilton has repeatedly had an edge over Sebastian Vettel but Mercedes now seem to have a gap to close on Ferrari
Car W10 Engine Mercedes Principal Toto Wolff Debut France 1954 GPs 189 Titles 5 2018 1st
Attempting to take a record sixth consecutive drivers and constructors championship doubles, it appears Mercedes have work to do to match Ferrari. Yet there is no doubt they have the strength in depth, experience and clinical team efficiency to catch their rivals. Have stuck with their tried and tested low-rake car that can be expected to come up to pace in short order.
No 44 Debut Australia 2007 Wins 73 Poles 83 Titles 5 Last season 1st Odds 5-4
Still highly motivated, Hamilton is simply driving better than ever. He has repeatedly proven he has the edge over Sebastian Vettel and will be confident he can do so again. Still extracts the best from his car, will be relentless in his pursuit of a sixth title and is likely to be spurred to even greater heights if starting on the back foot.
No 77 Debut Australia 2013 Wins 3 Poles 6 Best finish 3rd Last season 5th Odds 25-1
A below-par 2018 marred by bad luck has put Bottas under pressure to keep his seat. Needs a strong start to build the confidence that took a battering last season but was buoyant in pre-season so expect a feisty Finn out of the blocks.
Car SF90 Engine Ferrari Principal Mattia Binotto Debut Monaco 1950 GPs 969 Titles 16 2018 2nd
The Scuderia have the car to beat, quick and beautifully balanced it is forgiving of error and allows the drivers to attack the corners. Binotto has brought apparent harmony and they have every chance but must make the most of any early advantage over Mercedes and be relentlessly successful in development.
No 5 Debut USA 2007 Wins 52 Poles 55 Titles 4 Last season 2nd Odds 15-8
Errors cost the German last season and he cannot afford a repeat if he is to beat Hamilton. At his best when out front and dictating the race and full of confidence, starting the season strongly and then piling on the pressure may be key.
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