F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone is hoping that Ferrari can take the fight to Mercedes this year, after finishing runner-up to their German rival last year.
After a winless 2014 season, a resurgent Ferrari squad turned around the tables last year, scoring three victories en-route to second place in the championship.
Mercedes, by comparison, has dominated Formula 1 since the advent of the V6 turbo era in 2014, sealing back-to-back titles with relative ease.
Ecclestone believes a closer battle between the two manufacturers will bring back much needed excitement to the sport.
"The bottom line is a simple one. I'm hoping upon hope that Ferrari get back to where Ferrari should be, which would be challenging for the world championship, and the same with Red Bull,’’ Ecclestone was quoted in the Australian Grand Prix podcast.
"It depends an awful lot on how Ferrari perform. If they don't show they can win the championship, unfortunately -- or fortunately depending on where you are -- we're going to have a Mercedes dominating again,’’ he said.
The 85-year old also expects Nico Rosberg to pose a sterner challenge to teammate Lewis Hamilton, having ended last year on a high note with three wins on trot..
"Having said that, maybe Nico, after three wins last year, he's going to be in form. Maybe he has suddenly got a bit more confidence in himself, so let's see. If those two [Hamilton and Rosberg] are challenging each other, it will be good,'' he added.
by Rachit Thukral