Formula 1 was in trouble heading into the 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix, its 900th world championship race.
It was two events into its bold new, environmentally-aware, turbocharged hybrid engine era - and those first two events had been, in the eyes of many, rubbish.
Single-team domination courtesy of Mercedes. Quiet engines that sounded "shit" according to grumpy world champion Sebastian Vettel. Drivers so focused on conserving fuel that they spent races cruising around well off the pace in a display Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo declared "taxi-cab racing".