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F1 rivals unconvinced by Mercedes' 'little lies'

Niki Lauda and co believe that Mercedes GP is better prepared than the team is letting on – and that Michael Schumacher and Nico Rosberg will both be on the pace next weekend in Bahrain for the F1 2010 season opener.
Niki Lauda has dismissed claims that Mercedes Grand Prix won't be quite as competitive as it needs to be heading to Bahrain for the F1 2010 season opener.

Team boss Ross Brawn said recently that 'his' team is not as well-prepared as he would like and that the Brackley-based outfit hasn't got the car working consistently [see separate story - click here].

However, Lauda reckons that Michael Schumacher and Nico Rosberg will both be on the pace next weekend: "The claim that Mercedes is struggling and will not be able to drive for victory is an understatement in my opinion," Lauda told espnf1.com.

That view is echoed by McLaren's Jenson Button, who said he does 'not completely believe him [Brawn]' and Button's team-mate, Lewis Hamilton.

"I could complain as well and say little lies as they do," Hamilton added in an interview with La Stampa. "The truth is that there are five or six competitive teams with similar performance at the moment, which is a situation that I have never before seen in F1."

Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo meanwhile, just like those at Mercedes, is also playing down expectations that Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa will be the pace setters in the new Ferrari F10.

"We are not the best," Montezemolo told Sky Sports. "We are among the best [with the likes of Red Bull Racing, McLaren and Mercedes]. Last year we finished well behind the others and we are still recovering."

Related Pictures

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Niki Lauda (GER), German F1 Grand Prix, Nurburgring, 10-12th, July 2009

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March 05, 2010 7:52 PM

People in the limelight are held to different standards. The reason they are happy to keep bringing it up is that it showed a chink in Lewis's armor. They were happy to find a flaw. But in the end he should have known better. I think he learned a big lesson so all was not lost. Forget and forgive. It's the F1 way.

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