Mercedes look to have a new challenger as the Monaco Grand Prix gets set for qualifying as Red Bull’s renaissance continues.
The Grand Prix that is set to coincide with the Cannes Film Festival could well see yet another thickening of the plot this weekend.
Championship leader Nico Rosberg hinted Red Bull were faster, and Daniel Ricciardo’s dominance on Thursday afternoon confirmed this as he went six tenths of a second quicker than the Silver Arrows.
Ricciardo has Reanult’s new engine, which they believe will give them half a second per lap. If that’s true, Mercedes will be very worried for the rest of the season despite Ferrari’s challenge looking to be fading.
That said, Sebastian Vettel was the fastest man on Saturday morning – by just two hundredths of a second – as Lewis Hamilton, Ricciardo, Rosberg and Max Verstappen all struggled to get a clear lap in.
Each time Ferrari have been top of the final practice session twice before this season in Bahrain and in China and on both occasions have been off the front row the following qualifying session.
Mercedes is already a tense garage these days.
The hangover from that clash at the Spanish Grand Prix, where Hamilton and Rosberg took each other out from the lead on the very first lap remains.
Monaco has been the scene of controversy between the two before, when the German, who won the first four races of 2016, parked his car at Mirabeau to ensure pole position.
Qualifying for the Monaco Grand Prix could upset Formula One’s apple cart for the second weekend in a row.