• Mercedes

    Mercedes Mercedes W08

    The F1 benchmark once again starts the season as favourite, but the new challenges of 2017, and pre-season testing, suggest it may not be quite as easy for the Silver Arrows as the team chases a fourth straight crown

    Mercedes F1 W08
    Starts148
    First GPFrance 1954
    Wins64
    Poles73
    Fastest Laps47
    20161st

    When you’ve won all but eight races during a three-year period, there are very good reasons for that – so there’s no doubt Mercedes is favourite going into this season. It has the budget, a three-time world champion driver, a strong power-unit package and technical strength in all areas. But no team is perfect, and the car I saw in testing appeared to have a slight understeer problem and may not have the kind of advantage that Mercedes has been used to.

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    More on Mercedes:
    44 Lewis Hamilton

    Lewis Hamilton

    Last year's position 2nd
    Age 32
    Starts 188
    First GP Australia 2007
    Best Finish 1st (53 wins)
    Best Qualifying 1st (61 poles)
    Fastest laps 31
    77 Valtteri Bottas

    Valtteri Bottas

    Last year's position 8th
    Age 27
    Starts 77
    First GP Australia 2013
    Best Finish 2nd
    Best Qualifying 2nd
    Fastest laps 1
  • Red Bull

    Red Bull Red Bull RB13

    Red Bull ended last year on form, and the new regulations for 2017 seemed perfect for the title-winning team to move back to the front. But initial signs have been underwhelming – is there more to come?

    Red Bull RB13
    Starts224
    First GPAustralia 2005
    Wins52
    Poles58
    Fastest Laps52
    20162nd

    The worry is that it could be the same old story this year for Red Bull – a good car let down by a Renault engine that isn’t quite up to the mark. I’m still expecting to see more aerodynamic developments on the car for the Australian Grand Prix, but even then it looks like Red Bull isn’t going to be in as strong a position as everyone had hoped over the winter.

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    More on Red Bull:
    3 Daniel Ricciardo

    Daniel Ricciardo

    Last year's position 3rd
    Age 27
    Starts 109
    First GP Great Britain 2011
    Best Finish 1st (4 wins)
    Best Qualifying 1st (1 pole)
    Fastest laps 8
    33 Max Verstappen

    Max Verstappen

    Last year's position 5th
    Age 19
    Starts 40
    First GP Australia 2015
    Best Finish 1st (1 win)
    Best Qualifying 2nd
    Fastest laps 1
  • Ferrari

    Ferrari Ferrari SF70H

    After being one of the biggest disappointments of 2016, Ferrari was one of the success stories of pre-season testing. Now it’s time to prove it can do more than just win the 'winter world championship'

    Ferrari SF70H
    Starts928
    First GPMonaco 1950
    Wins224
    Poles208
    Fastest Laps237
    20163rd

    What we saw from Ferrari during testing was very encouraging. The car looked superb on track, good under braking, on turn-in, mid-corner, and there were no obvious traction problems on corner exit. There’s no doubt that, after a very difficult 2016, a good step has been made. The question is: is it enough?

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    More on Red Bull:
    5 Sebastian Vettel

    Sebastian Vettel

    Last year's position 4th
    Age 29
    Starts 178
    First GP USA 2007
    Best Finish 1st (42 wins)
    Best Qualifying 1st (46 poles)
    Fastest laps 28
    7 Kimi Raikkonen

    Kimi Raikkonen

    Last year's position 6th
    Age 37
    Starts 251
    First GP Australia 2001
    Best Finish 1st (20 wins)
    Best Qualifying 1st (16 poles)
    Fastest laps 43
  • Force India

    Force India Force India VJM10

    This efficient squad has its work cut out to maintain its giant-killing level of performance, but there’s no reason to think it can’t once again be near the front of the battle behind Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull

    Force India VJM10
    Starts171
    First GPAustralia 2008
    Best finish2nd
    Poles1
    Fastest Laps4
    20164th

    After climbing to fourth in the championship last year, the team’s hopes should be to keep moving forward, but the reality is that Force India isn’t going to be in a position to challenge the big three this time.

    It’s in the thick of the battle for fourth place and if it can hold on to that, and perhaps even close the big points gap to the top three, then that will be a very good return for a team operating on limited resources. But judging from testing that won’t be easy, with so many teams in that midfield battle.

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    More on Force India:
    11 Sergio Perez

    Sergio Perez

    Last year's position 7th
    Age 27
    Starts 114
    First GP Australia 2011
    Best Finish 2nd
    Best Qualifying 4th
    Fastest laps 3
    31 Esteban Ocon

    Esteban Ocon

    Last year's position 23rd
    Age 20
    Starts 9
    First GP Belgium 2016
    Best Finish 12th
    Best Qualifying 17th
    Fastest laps 0
  • Williams

    Williams Williams FW40

    The famous team appears to have built a solid performer for the new regulations, but is the driver line-up strong enough given how close the midfield battle for points is likely to be this season?

    Williams FW40
    Starts646
    First GPSpain 1977
    Wins114
    Poles127
    Fastest Laps131
    20165th

    After making a great step forward last time the rules changed in 2014, Williams has slowly slid back from sometimes giving Mercedes something to think about to being in the midfield. This rule change is not as big, but getting the best from these bigger Pirelli tyres will be no easy feat. While it’s clearly not up there with the big three, Williams is still looking strong in the battle for fourth.

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    More on Williams:
    18 Lance Stroll

    Lance Stroll

    Last year's position N/A
    Age 18
    Starts 0
    First GP N/A
    Best Finish N/A
    Best Qualifying N/A
    Fastest laps N/A
    19 Felipe Massa

    Felipe Massa

    Last year's position 11th
    Age 35
    Starts 250
    First GP Australia 2002
    Best Finish 1st (11 wins)
    Best Qualifying 1st (16 poles)
    Fastest laps 15
  • McLaren

    McLaren McLaren MCL32

    Hopes that the McLaren-Honda partnership was gradually moving towards the front appear to have been dashed by poor pace and reliability in testing. And it seems the engine isn’t the only problem

    McLaren MCL32
    Starts801
    First GPMonaco 1966
    Wins182
    Poles155
    Fastest Laps153
    20166th

    McLaren hasn’t always been delighted by my criticism of its progress, but all I can say is look at the performance of the car in testing. The fastest lap was 2.714 seconds off the quickest, there were too many technical problems and on track it didn’t look like a good car with a bad engine – it looked like it wasn’t very good all-round. So there are clearly problems on McLaren’s side as well as Honda’s.

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    More on McLaren:
    2 Stoffel Vandoorne

    Stoffel Vandoorne

    Last year's position 20th
    Age 24
    Starts 1
    First GP Bahrain 2016
    Best Finish 10th
    Best Qualifying 12th
    Fastest laps 0
    14 Fernando Alonso

    Fernando Alonso

    Last year's position 10th
    Age 35
    Starts 272
    First GP Australia 2001
    Best Finish 1st (32 wins)
    Best Qualifying 1st (22 poles)
    Fastest laps 22
  • Toro Rosso

    Toro Rosso Toro Rosso STR12

    Red Bull’s ‘other’ team has switched back to Renault power for 2017 and produced arguably the best-looking car for the new rules as it strives to move forward again after a difficult end to last year

    Toro Rosso STR12
    Starts206
    First GPBahrain 2006
    Wins1
    Poles1
    Fastest Laps1
    20167th

    Red Bull’s second team has been doing a good job in recent years on limited resources, and its major weakness from last season – using a year-old engine – has been eliminated. That said, the move from Ferrari to Renault power may bring its own problems.

    Read more team-by-team analysis from Gary Anderson
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    More on Toro Rosso:
    26 Daniil Kvyat

    Daniil Kvyat

    Last year's position 14th
    Age 22
    Starts 57
    First GP Australia 2014
    Best Finish 2nd
    Best Qualifying 4th
    Fastest laps 1
    55 Carlos Sainz

    Carlos Sainz

    Last year's position 12th
    Age 22
    Starts 40
    First GP Australia 2015
    Best Finish 6th
    Best Qualifying 5th
    Fastest laps 0
  • Haas

    Haas Haas VF-17

    That tricky first season was dealt with very well by the new American team last year. Now things get really tough, but the signs are that Haas will be in the mix of the intense midfield battle

    Haas VF-17
    Starts21
    First GPAustralia 2016
    Best finish5th
    Best qualifying7th
    Fastest Laps0
    20168th

    Doing well in your first season, when you’ve been able to focus completely on your car in the build-up to coming into F1, is one thing. But being able to deliver a good car in the second year, on which you have to do all the work while trying to get the best out of your existing machine, is a far bigger challenge.

    Read more team-by-team analysis from Gary Anderson
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    More on Haas:
    8 Romain Grosjean

    Romain Grosjean

    Last year's position 13th
    Age 30
    Starts 102
    First GP Europe 2009
    Best Finish 2nd
    Best Qualifying 2nd
    Fastest laps 1
    20 Kevin Magnussen

    Kevin Magnussen

    Last year's position 16th
    Age 24
    Starts 40
    First GP Australia 2014
    Best Finish 2nd
    Best Qualifying 4th
    Fastest laps 0
  • Renault

    Renault Renault RS17

    The first year of Renault’s return as a constructor was always going to be tough and the expectation is for a big improvement this season. Early signs are encouraging and Nico Hulkenberg should be a real asset

    Renault RS17
    Starts321
    First GPGreat Britain 1977
    Wins35
    Poles51
    Fastest Laps31
    20169th

    Last year was a strange one for Renault, with the late takeover meaning that it was never going to be a strong season. It made sense to just let 2016 go and focus on ’17 as the real first campaign for this ‘new’ Renault team. It’s on this year that we can judge the effectiveness of the work done in ’16.

    Read more team-by-team analysis from Gary Anderson
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    More on Renault:
    27 Nico Hulkenberg

    Nico Hulkenberg

    Last year's position 9th
    Age 29
    Starts 115
    First GP Bahrain 2010
    Best Finish 4th
    Best Qualifying 1st (1 pole)
    Fastest laps 2
    30 Jolyon Palmer

    Jolyon Palmer

    Last year's position 18th
    Age 26
    Starts 20
    First GP Australia 2016
    Best Finish 10th
    Best Qualifying 13th
    Fastest laps 0
  • Sauber

    Sauber Sauber C36

    New investment saved Sauber last season and now the rebuilding process begins. Initial indications are that its new challenger is solid but unspectacular, which could leave it at the back

    Sauber C36
    Starts421
    First GPSouth Africa 1993
    Wins1
    Poles1
    Fastest Laps5
    201610th

    On the one hand, Sauber is a team that’s rebuilding after some difficult years now it has new investment from Longbow Finance, so you have to make some allowances. On the other, it’s made questionable choices.

    Read more team-by-team analysis from Gary Anderson
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    More on Renault:
    9 Marcus Ericsson

    Marcus Ericsson

    Last year's position 22nd
    Age 26
    Starts 55
    First GP Australia 2014
    Best Finish 8th
    Best Qualifying 9th
    Fastest laps 0
    94 Pascal Wehrlein

    Pascal Wehrlein

    Last year's position 19th
    Age 22
    Starts 21
    First GP Australia 2016
    Best Finish 10th
    Best Qualifying 12th
    Fastest laps 0
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