Only five months ago Lewis Hamilton was battling out on track with Max Verstappen in a race for the world championship that went on until the very last lap of the closing round of the season in Abu Dhabi, two weeks ago he left Imola with no points after being lapped by the Red Bull.
Despite Russell’s P4 finish, the Emilia Romagna GP highlighted the poor form in which the German team has been in since the start of the season. The main struggle so far for Mercedes has been the excessive bouncing the W13 is experiencing while running on track, which has forced the team to run the car higher than it was supposed to, causing a significative loss of performance.
“It was a very difficult weekend for us in Imola. George did a great job to finish P4 from an unpromising starting position but with Lewis, we didn’t give him the tools or track position to show his true pace,” commented Toto Wolff.
A tough weekend that could mark a turning point, as the Team Principal explained that they will be testing out some updates in the upcoming Miami GP that, he is hopeful, will be the start of a developing journey in the right direction.
“Since we returned from Italy, we’ve learned as much from the weekend as we can and, in parallel, our learning has continued in the wind tunnel and simulations,” he explained.
“We have found several directions for improving the car, and we will be conducting experiments in Miami to correlate those simulations, and hopefully confirm the development path for the coming races.”
“Both drivers have been working in the simulator ahead of Miami and the factories have been busy producing updates for the next races.”
This is the first time in several years that Mercedes has to face such a difficult challenge after an undiscussed dominance over the turbo-hybrid era, but the team is facing this tough times with determination maximising the efforts to climb back up.
“The saying ‘smooth seas do not make good sailors’ comes to mind. This team has shown its resilience over many years and the difficult start to this season has lit a fire within every team member, determined to put it right.”