Written by Matthew Molver for @Hollywoodbets.
March is upon us and it seems to be flying by, I'm not complaining about this, however, because the time is nearly upon us for the 2016 Formula One season. Soon the pleasant, but boring, relaxation of a Sunday afternoon will be shattered by the roaring of V6 Hybrid engines roaring around tracks all over the world. This year's season promises to be an absolute doozy as teams have been rebranded and there is some new blood on the circuit. The cars are looking absolutely stunning and I cannot wait till the 20th of March when it all kicks off in Melbourne.
Bellow we'll take a look at who's likely to battle it out for mid-table honours this season.
To Win The Constructors Championship Outright
Force India 500/1 | Toro Roso 750/1 | Renault 750/1
FORCE INDIA MERCEDES
Perez and Nico Hulkenberg showed us what they could do by helping the team move up to fifth place on the constructors standings instead of finishing in their usual sixth position, last term. Their new car the VJM09 has shown promise during the Barcelona tests that took place in January, with Perez believing the baseline of the car has a lot of potential.
Can they do it again this year? With competitors like Red Bull and Williams, the task is definitely a difficult one, but they are showing a lot of optimism for the upcoming season.
I think there improved showing last term will have given them a massive confidence boost for this season. While they're unlikely to challenge the likes of Ferrari and McLaren, they will give the Red Bulls and Williams' a run for their money.
Toro Rosso is a team known for nurturing young drivers, readying them for the bigger teams. With alumni such as Sebastian Vettel, they certainly have delivered on this. The Red Bull academy has continued on in that vein promoting young drivers Max Verstappen and Carlos Sainz in 2015. The duo showed massive potential and are likely to get a few more top-six finishes under their belts this season
Unfortunately, for the young guns, performance issues with their Renault power unit proved to be their downfall last season.
This year's Barcelona tests showed off their new car the STR11. The car performed well in the four days of testing, getting a lot of mileage and there were no serious issues to deal with. Their power unit has proved to be reliable as the drivers completed 447 laps during the four days. If their car continues to behave, Toro Rosso could be on to improve on last year's points tally.
With the papers being signed in late 2015 what was previously known as Lotus has been bought out by Renault. Hoping to improve on Lotus' dismal performance in 2015, Renault has brought on British Driver Jolyon Palmer as one of their drivers for the 2016 F1 season.
The team were handed a shock in January when their other driver, Pastor Maldonado, declared he was going to leave the team. Given his performances in 2015, this may actually be a blessing in disguise.
Preliminary testing in Barcelona has been rocky for Renault which does not bode well for their change from a Mercedes performance unit to a Renault. They were plagued with software issues on day one and a failed turbo on day two. However Kevin Magnussen enjoyed better reliability driving in the latter half of the testing period, clocking a respectable 153 laps on the fourth day.
The drivers have commented on how well the car drives and the team believes that they have a solid foundation to work off.
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