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George Russell, Mercedes W13
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Formula 1 Bahrain March Testing
Special feature

What we learned on day one of the second 2022 F1 test

With the second Formula 1 test of 2022 underway in Bahrain, the rivalry between Red Bull and Mercedes has once again been reignited. Matt Kew looks at the latest episode in their fierce fight, this time centring around Mercedes' radical new sidepod design

If there’s a perfect snapshot of the mentality that Red Bull harbours towards Mercedes - and Mercedes possesses regarding Red Bull - then oddly, it’s to be found in the lyrics of a classic show tune. ‘Anything you can do I can do better. I can do anything better than you’. So far in 2022, that involves scrapping for sidepod supremacy.

Wind back 15 days to the first morning of the 2022 Formula 1 pre-season ‘shakedown’ at Barcelona and the artistry of the aerodynamics team led by Adrian Newey was the talk of the town. Even in the context of the new rules unexpectedly paving the way for greater design differentiation between teams, the RB18 looked radically different to its rivals.

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