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So what free seats are there for Nico next year?
To be honest I don't think Merc will be too upset with Nico's current form. He can't get near Hamilton, but he's still easily good enough to bring the car home 2nd. So they can still get comfortable 1-2's when they've got the best car, but without the drama and tension of last season. Win win from a team view. 

That's makes it only once in the last 10 races that Rosberg has beaten Hamilton now though. I remember a while ago (around Russia last season) someone on here saying the radio ban had negatively influenced Nico more so than Lewis. At the time I said it was too soon to say, but in hindsight now you've got to say since the rule came in to place, Lewis has endured his most dominant spell over Rosberg since they've been teammates. I may be adding 2 and 2 together and coming to 5, but I don't see the same Nico who gave Lewis the race of his life at places like Bahrain and Catalunya last season and the way see it something has to have provoked that change. Plus Nico is normally one of the drivers more regularly asking for driving tips, although we obviously don't hear all the team radios. 

He's entering a crucial time of the season now, and the way I see it he has two options:

Option 1 is he needs to completley overhaul his mindset and his driving and almost act like he's starting again in this championship. He needs to start beating Lewis in practice and qualifying before all else - to displace the mentality that Lewis has got him beat before he even steps in the car in the race, and at least put some slight doubt in his head. Then slowly translate that to races. 

Option 2 is a lot simpler. He takes a heel turn and becomes Mr Nasty again, just like he did last season by pulling a Monaco/Spa style stunt. Fans may not condone it, but if it's the only way he can get in to the championship and in to Lewis' head, then that's what needs to be done. He's started this season as Mr Nice Guy just like he did last season, and it gives Lewis the oppurtunity to walk all over him when his head is clear.
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Problem is, even if he qualifies ahead of Lewis, chances are Lewis will get him in the race. He always finds a way past.
As for the Mr Nasty-bit, that won't work another time. I'm sure Lewis has learned a lot from Monaco last year and if you look back at what happened after Spa, Hamilton was the one coming stronger out of that dogfight. Plus, Mercedes won't tolerate dirty driving (I mean in a cheating way).
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I've just discovered a really funny stat. Maldonado has only finished in the points 8 times in his career!
Even better, he's finished in the points once all season three times in four years and retired from the first two races four times in the last five!
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Very interesting stuff as always from Craig Scarborough, always cool to see those little illustrations too, but I always wonder when I see this sort of thing (similar to Giorgio Piola), how do they know that the engine looks like that?

Piola especially has produced ridiculously detailed drawings of the cars over the years and I think, how has he managed to do these, getting right into the depths of the car or engine? Has he somehow got photos from there, some inside knowledge, or is it just an educated guess?

I'm not saying they're wrong as they're obviously experts and that's what they do, it's just always made me think.
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