Since it became clear exactly how dominant Mercedes is in 2014, the Monaco Grand Prix weekend has been marked with a big asterisk in the calendar by the chasing pack.
Thursday practice on the streets of the Principality suggests that Red Bull potentially has the pace to push the Silver Arrows harder than in the first five races of the season, with Daniel Ricciardo again the most convincing of its drivers.
With the afternoon's wet conditions - which only allowed drivers to set times on slick rubber in the final 10 minutes - rendering any tentative long-run data even more irrelevant than it would be even once the near-impossibility of overtaking is factored in, a clear picture did not emerge.
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