In the latest F1 Gossip, Mercedes keeps a close eye on Ferrari’s pace at pre-season testing, Renault prepares for a new engine design from 2021 and former world champion Jenson Button calls on Charles Leclerc to put up a title fight against Lewis Hamilton this year.

- Mercedes believes Ferrari is hiding its true pace and performance following the first pre-season test. The Italian manufacturer was well down the F1 timesheet relative to its expected performance, something the team says was a deliberate move having revised its testing programme as it looks to build base settings before targeting performance. (Reuters)

- Renault is set to ‘freeze’ its current engine specification for the 2020 season and deliver minor upgrades throughout the campaign as it shifts focus to a new power unit design in 2021. This year marks its final season in partnership with McLaren ahead of the Woking-based team’s switch to Mercedes power, leaving the French manufacturer with only its works outfit to supply. (

- Former F1 world champion Jenson Button says Charles Leclerc must fight Lewis Hamilton for the world title in 2020 after his honeymoon period at Ferrari. (Daily Mail)

- Mercedes is confident its 2020 F1 car, the W11, is much faster than its world championship-winning predecessor following analysis after the opening pre-season test. (BBC Sport)

- While the reigning world champions also explain its ‘adventurous’ W11 design, including its DAS system, came as a response to its F1 title rivals. (Sky Sports)

- Daniel Ricciardo opens up on his Kobe Bryant tribute helmet which he debuted at F1 pre-season testing last week. The Renault driver says he was a huge admirer of the basketball legend who tragically died in a helicopter crash last month along with his 13-year-old daughter Gianaa, six friends and the pilot. (

- Ex-F1 driver Nico Hulkenberg heads to Rio de Janeiro for Carnival in his first year outside of the sport.


The calm before the Storm!  #riodejaneiro #carnevale #samba

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