Mercedes team boss Ross Brawn has predicted that the 2012 F1 season is shaping up to be classic after pre-season testing drew to close in Spain.
Combined times from the final four days of running in Spain saw the top 17 drivers covered by less than a second, while the three test sessions held over the past month have seen a number of teams lead the way.
Speaking during the final day of testing at Catalunya, Brawn admitted it was difficult to see exactly where each team lies in the pecking order heading to the season opener in Melbourne, with the only certainty being that things have tightened up through the field.
“Form varies form day to day, so there is no definitive ranking,” he said. “What there is, is a group.
“Even with the new package the Red Bull didn't seem to stand out, but they may have been running a huge amount of fuel, we don't know. They're going to be competitive, McLaren look pretty sensible, they look as though they have a good car and I don't think we're too far off. It is difficult to judge, but there are five or six teams that are a much closer grouping than we have seen for a number of years.
“I think we're going to have a really exciting season. It could be one of the best seasons we've seen for a number of years."