With a little over a week to go before the latest Formula One season commences, the sport has seen serious transformations from last year. Overall, it looks like it will be a faster, more exciting, competitive year for a sport that has seen two years of a single team dominating, and, as a result, taking away significantly from the excitement of the sport.
What should you look forward to from this season? Here's a lowdown:
For hunters – of pole positions, race wins and championship titles, that is! 2014 and 2015 were Mercedes’ years through and through, with each of their competitors acknowledging that the German constructors had an engine far superior to any other on the track.
Most notably, Ferrari principal Maurizio Arrivabene said ahead of the 2015 Italian Grand Prix that he thought Mercedes were 'miles ahead' in terms of development. Towards the end of the year, with both Mercedes and primary driver Lewis Hamilton having already firmly established a grip on the title, principal and team both vowed to come back stronger in the new season.
If testing is any indication, this season will not be nearly as one-sided as the past two, with both Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen setting the highest paces of the session, both on soft variants.
Mercedes still look strong, with reigning double champion Lewis Hamilton topping the charts in terms of mileage. Mercedes appear not to have gone for speed during the test, instead focusing on durability and racking up miles - which they have been very successful at. While that is in itself a strong indication that Mercedes will still be near the top, the fact that both Ferrari and Williams have set strong paces, with Force India and McLaren also in the fray, means fans will be treated to some proper racing this year.