Earlier than the French Grand Prix, Mercedes had huge plans: The design of the observe, clean asphalt and no bumps ought to go well with the W13 completely and finish the limitless spell.
It appeared otherwise, with the double platform of Lewis Hamilton and George Russell, Mercedes elevated the consequence, however benefited from the issues of Ferrari. The crew from Brackley had nothing to battle on the prime, the hole to Max Verstappen was too huge. Does something just like the outdated Mercedes fashion nonetheless exist or is the title a factor of the previous, just like the reign of the Silver Arrows?
Hamilton and Russell don’t have any probability out of Mercedes’ method
“We carry a package deal of fine updates to Paul Ricard. Moist observe. Then, growth! There isn’t a efficiency there. We can not clarify what’s mistaken,” mentioned Toto Wolff in regards to the nice failure of his certified drivers. . Mercedes’ race tempo was higher, however not ok. “In my ‘glass empty’ view, now we have loads to do!”
Mercedes has at all times adopted a sure aerodynamic philosophy when designing a automotive lately (like Purple Bull). Sure programs within the racing calendar are subsequently extra appropriate for every group on account of its observe traits. On these tracks – reminiscent of Sochi for Mercedes or Monaco for Purple Bull – the automotive in query was at all times stronger. That is how the title Purple Bull or Mercedes observe was born.
France: outdoors or mannequin Mercedes?
Silverstone has all of the hallmarks of a typical Mercedes circuit: very flat, few bumps and lengthy, quick corners. Since 2014, the winner of Nice Britain has been Mercedes (Lewis Hamilton) seven instances. Once more in 2022 the Brit confirmed a quick tempo and was capable of sustain with Ferrari’s instances. Nevertheless, as in Le Castellet, the anticipated race success didn’t materialize. Similar sport at Barcelona: On an excellent day, Mercedes can sustain the tempo on the entrance. Particularly within the race (and after a sure warm-up section at first of the race), the W13 at all times appears to work higher, however much less on the quickest qualifying stage.
Not so in France. Regardless of the favorable observe situations, Hamilton and Russell had been unable to realize the long-awaited victory. Max Verstappen’s profitable margin was smaller on Sunday than on Saturday, however vital. Are you profitable your self? No probability. Earlier than the summer season break, there’ll nonetheless be driving in Hungary, the slender observe, winding and gradual passages don’t go well with Mercedes in any respect when it comes to design. However: “Budapest will probably be actually good for us!” Toto Wolff joked after the race. And it advertises the Hungaroring as a Mercedes observe.
Toto Wolff: Mentally again in Hungary to victory for Mercedes
In concept, issues ought to go properly at Circuit Paul Ricard, however it did not. “Possibly we should always do some sort of pondering again now. Then we could be proper on the mistaken observe!” mentioned the Mercedes crew supervisor, who was enjoying for some time. “However joking apart, to be trustworthy, I do not know. We got here right here anticipating to have the ability to battle for fulfillment.”
“And we did not do this,” defined Toto Wolff. “So we do not actually know what to anticipate in Budapest!” The statistics of earlier years communicate clearly for the Silver Arrows: Lewis Hamilton within the Mercedes has already received 5 instances right here. Final yr, it wasn’t a twisty observe that prevented Mercedes from profitable a sixth race on the Hungaroring, however a poor tire selection. Will Mercedes handle their first win of the season in Hungary like in 2013? As Toto Wolff would say of his new methods of pondering once more: “Budapest fits Mercedes completely!”