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How did the teams fare in 2015?

F1 2015 Review Following on from our drivers end of term reports last week, we've taken the time to sit down and analyse how the teams performed during the course of 2015. Instead of following the same format as our report cards, we've given a score out of 50 to each team, based on five different categories. High marks mean the team performed well in the category whereas low marks mean there is serious room for improvement.

  • Reliability  - How often did a car fail to finish a race, marks as also lowered if a car retires from a strong position costing points or a podium.
  • Potential - To what extent did a team reach or exceed their potential?
  • Chassis - Ignoring the engine, how strong was the team's chassis?
  • Strategy - Was the team strategically sound or was there the occasional costly blunder?
  • PR - How well did the team handle relations and problems in the press?
The results of our survey can be found below, and they make some interesting reading! 

Mercedes AMG Petronas F1

  • Reliability – 9.5/10
  • Potential – 10/10
  • Chassis – 9/10
  • Strategy – 8/10
  • PR – 8/10
  • TOTAL – 44.5/50

Mercedes unsurprisingly top the list in virtually every category. Dominant once again in 2015, Mercedes enjoyed a near perfect season bar Hamilton’s strategy blunder in Monaco and the two retirements they suffered. Toto Wolff did well to manage the deteriorating relationship between Hamilton and Rosberg although it would have been nice to see the drivers have a free choice on strategy once both championships had been decided.

Scuderia Ferrari 

  • Reliability – 8/10
  • Potential – 9/10
  • Chassis – 7/10
  • Strategy – 8/10
  • PR – 8/10
  • TOTAL – 40/50

Coming in just 4.5 points behind Mercedes, like their rivals, Ferrari also enjoyed a stellar season. Good strategy calls such as Vettel’s in Malaysia were balanced out by bad ones like in Abu Dhabi but on the whole Ferrari very much achieved their potential in 2015. If they continue their upward curve of improvement over the winter, they will almost certainly be much closer to Mercedes come Melbourne next year.

Sahara Force India

  • Reliability – 7/10
  • Potential – 9.5/10
  • Chassis – 7/10
  • Strategy – 7/10
  • PR – 8/10
  • TOTAL – 38.5/50

Had Force India had their B-Spec chassis up and running in time for the start of the season they could well have been fighting Williams and Red Bull for third place in the constructors table. The soon to be Aston Martin squad enjoyed their best year in F1 to date and coupled with some stunning drives from Perez propelled themselves to fifth place in the constructors table.

Williams Martini Racing 

  • Reliability – 9/10
  • Potential – 8/10
  • Chassis – 7/10
  • Strategy – 6/10
  • PR – 8/10
  • TOTAL – 38/50

Securing consecutive third place finishes in the constructors table represents another successful season of consolidation from Williams, especially coming off the back of a dismal 2013. In Bottas and Massa they have two exceptional drivers capable of driving the team forward and all they require now is one final push to help them challenge for race wins in 2016. Their decision to halt development on their 2015 car early clearly hampered them come the final stages of the season, but will hopefully reap rewards next year. Williams lost marks on the chassis front for it’s inability to match it’s competitors at either tight and twisty circuits or in the rain.

Scuderia Toro Rosso

  • Reliability – 6/10
  • Potential – 7/10
  • Chassis – 8/10
  • Strategy – 7.5/10
  • PR – 8/10
  • TOTAL – 36.5/50

Had it not been for Sainz’s reliability woes and an under powered engine, Toro Rosso may well have found themselves sixth in the championship table at the end of the season. However, an undoubtedly strong chassis, coupled with some smart strategy calls over the course of the season helped Toro Rosso to what was almost certainly one of their best seasons in F1 to date.

Lotus F1 Team

  • Reliability – 6/10
  • Potential – 7/10
  • Chassis – 7/10
  • Strategy – 7/10
  • PR – 8/10
  • TOTAL – 35/50

We’ll be honest here, the majority of positives about Lotus’s (soon to be Renault) season came from the cockpit of Romain Grosjean’s car. With crippling financial problems and high court orders looming over their heads Lotus did a remarkable job just by making it to every race of the season. Their highlight of the season, a podium at Spa came just as the debt collectors were knocking at their door and Renault’s takeover of the Enstone squad once again will ensure the remarkable team of staff at Lotus can head into the winter with their futures secure.

Manor Marussia 

  • Reliability – 7/10
  • Potential 7/10
  • Chassis – 6/10
  • Strategy – 6/10
  • PR – 8/10
  • TOTAL 34/50

In some respects Manor deserve full marks just for making onto the grid this year. Bar their absence in Australia, and in light of their drastic financial troubles towards the tail end of last season, credit must go at everyone at Manor for making it through 2015 relatively unscathed. The tragic loss of Jules Bianchi cast a long cold shadow over the small tight knit squad but they came together to end surely their most difficult year in heart warming style. With much improved prospects for 2016, don’t be surprised to see Manor higher up the grid come the start of next season.

Sauber F1 Team 

  • Reliability – 7/10
  • Potential – 6/10
  • Chassis – 7/10
  • Strategy – 6/10
  • PR – 7/10
  • TOTAL – 33/50

Many of our marks for Sauber represent what was an extremely strong start to the season for them. Nasr’s fifth place at Melbourne highlighted the strength of their chassis and a lack of funds played a part in ensuring the team acheived nowhere near their potential in 2015. Hopes will be high for an improved 2016, but with funding an ever present problem at the lower end of the grid, an improvement will be a major struggle.

Infiniti Red Bull Racing 

  • Reliability – 6/10
  • Potential – 6/10
  • Chassis – 9/10
  • Strategy 7/10
  • PR – 3/10
  • TOTAL – 31/50

The bottom of our list features two fallen giants, the first of which are Red Bull. Hampered by a severely lacking Renault engine Red Bull feature second from bottom largely due to their abysmal PR effort during 2015. The public berating of their long term partners Renault was nothing short of embarrassing for both parties and Red Bull must pray that their decision to take on more in house development next season pays off. Their criticism was a poor way to treat the engine provider who had powered them to eight world titles in four seasons and it took the shine off what was essentially one of the best Chassis on the grid in 2015.  Red Bull must improve in 2016 or face another series of quit threats from the powers that be.

McLaren Honda

  • Reliability – 4/10
  • Potential – 1/10
  • Chassis – 6.5/10
  • Strategy – 6/10
  • PR – 10/10
  • TOTAL – 27.5/50

Ironically McLaren were the only team to receive a 10/10 score apart form Mercedes, however this was down to the admirable efforts of Jenson Button (sometimes Alonso) in their post race interviews, which more often than not, took place during the race. 2015 was a terrible year for McLaren and things can only get better during 2016. We’ve been promised big things for next season, and time is ticking down to the first preseason test, where everyone involved at Woking and in Japan will be hoping for better things.

Image thanks to www.formula1.com

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