Niki Lauda says he is not concerned that Mercedes’ utter domination of Formula 1 is turning the sport into a snooze fest.
In Monaco, a strategy blunder showed a potential weakness of the German team, and then Ferrari looked to have closed the horse power gap in Montreal with its upgraded engine.
But world champion Lewis Hamilton then cruised to pole and victory in Canada ahead of his teammate Nico Rosberg.
Boss Toto Wolff said that, after the Monaco blunder and ensuing “massive criticism”, he was relieved to prove Mercedes is not run by “a bunch of idiots”.
The international media, however, was anything but relieved.
“Check mate for Formula 1,” declared Tuttosport. “The German team is too strong. If there are no misunderstandings or surprises, Hamilton wins.”
La Stampa agreed, saying Montreal was a mere “formality” for Mercedes, while Spain’s Diario AS said Hamilton reminded F1 in Canada that “the title belongs to him alone”.
“It was boredom from beginning to end,” said influential La Gazzetta dello Sport.
The Swiss daily Neue Zurcher Zeitung said a marmot running across the track was “one of the most exciting moments, unless you are interested in brakes and fuel-saving”.
Bild added: “Formula one is just like the film Groundhog Day — the same thing repeated again and again. Mercedes wins, and wins, and wins.”
F1 legend Lauda, also Mercedes’ team chairman, is unapologetic, “We are here to win every damn race. That’s our job.”
Boss Wolff, however, insists he remains concerned about the threat posed by Ferrari, “We must not underestimate them.”
“My assumption is that we did not see the best of them. We saw how strong they were in practice and so I’m sure they will be back in Austria,” he added.