There was little to separate Mercedes and Ferrari for most of the 2017 F1 season, but their design philosophies were substantially diverse. Which elements did each team master best, and what hints of 2018 directions can be seen?
After three years of dominance, the big question was whether Mercedes could stay on top in 2017 through the major aerodynamic rule changes. As for Ferrari, was this a chance to recover from a poor previous season and get back into the game?
The answer to both questions was yes, with both teams fighting for the championship until Ferrari and Sebastian Vettel lost momentum, thanks to the start crash in Singapore and then failures in Malaysia and Japan.
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Formula 1 overtaking slumped by half in 2017
Speeds up but overtakes down: Pirelli analyses the F1 2017 season