Mark Webber is making a bold call and banking on Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel to take top spoils next Sunday in Melbourne.
Ferrari's pre-season performance in Barcelona has impressed many, but few see the Scuderia keeping the pace going when the lights go green on Sunday.
But Webber says the red squad will keep the momentum going, and Vettel is his favourite.
"Ferrari have been very good at performing when the grandstands are empty in pre-season,' said Aussie Grit.
"Then the season starts, the Italian influence comes into play and they get panicky and do wacky stuff."
"I think Vettel will win. In previous seasons Lewis has been more comfortable with the car than he is this time. The Mercedes has been more dominant at this point previously.
"Ferrari had a great pre-season and are ahead of where we expected them to be. Red Bull are there too so it will be really close. Those top-three teams are going to be on a pretty similar level."
Webber isn't putting many chips on his former team for now, expressing a few doubts about Renault's ability to provide consistent power to the Milton Keynes outfit.
But he is a big fan of 19-year-old Max Verstappen.
"Verstappen's the dark horse. He's phenomenal for his age. He has that win-at-all-costs arrogant streak.
"He is good in all conditions. It's like he can see things in slow motion and has time to react. It's great to watch.
"The jury's out on that Renault engine in the Red Bull lasting the course of the season. That's the only bit I'm worried about for them and it's hard for me to pick between Ferrari and Mercedes.
"It's going to be fascinating."