(Mercedes AMG F1 Team)
Formula One returns to Europe for the first time since winter testing in under two weeks time as the Spanish Grand Prix gets underway at the Circuit De Catalunya in Barcelona. The circuit will host the new era of Formula One for the first time as in 2014 preseason testing took place at the Jerez circuit.
The Spanish Grand Prix is traditionally ear marked by the teams as the race that they bring their first major upgrade package to the track and this year there is added importance to the upgrades as a number of teams seems to be struggling with the era of Formula One.
One team who are not struggling however are Mercedes as the Brackley based outfit have taken victory in all of the first four Grand Prix of the season and they head to Barcelona with a sizable points advantage at the top of the Constructors championship and their two driver's Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton are one and two in the Drivers classification.
Last years race was won by Ferrari's Fernando Alonso who finished the race 9.3 seconds ahead of Kimi Raikkonen who was driving for Lotus. Felipe Massa finished the race in third in the second Ferrari while Lewis Hamilton finished in 12th place one lap down. Nico Rosberg, who is currently the championship leader finished last seasons race in 6th place having started the race from pole position.
The Mercedes duo locked out the front row in Barcelona last season and it is likely that with their current advantage the Brackley based outfit may very well repeat this feat. We will just have to wait and see if any of the other team's like Ferrari, Red Bull, McLaren or Williams can challenge the Mercedes duo.
The track temperatures are expected to be very high in Barcelona so as a result teams will have to manage their tyre wear very carefully. The Mercedes driver's seem to be able to cope with tyre wear in particular Lewis Hamilton. It will be interesting to see what they can do.
The race will be extra special for Paddock Eye as I will be attending the race which is my first Grand Prix since the 2010 Italian Grand Prix and with the new era of Formula One having proven to be extremely exciting so far I can not wait to see and indeed hear the new cars up close and indeed to hear the new power units first hand is going to be absolutely fantastic.
I can't wait for the Grand Prix and to share my experience with the fans.
©Ben Johnston 2014