Mercedes, the German carmaker, is optimistic due to the advancements achieved through the substantial upgrade initially unveiled at the Monaco Grand Prix.
The updated floor design, newly introduced sidepods, and altered front suspension have resulted in Lewis Hamilton securing podium positions in the last two races, most recently competing fiercely with Fernando Alonso in Canada to ultimately claim third place.
However, despite the improvements, Mercedes is well aware that it needs to step up its game to rival Red Bull, which is why they are prepared to roll out a series of upgrades before the summer recess.
Team lead Toto Wolff announced that the British GP next month would be one of two races targeted for the introduction of new components.
“We’re set to bring a more extensive upgrade to Silverstone,” he stated. “We should have another one in place before the shutdown.
“The knowledge gains have substantially increased since we modified some of the conceptual architecture. We should see significant improvements in the next four races.”
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes F1 W14
Photo by: Glenn Dunbar / F1 Flow Images
Mercedes has been satisfied with the development direction initiated by its Monaco upgrade. According to Wolff, the speed of their progress has noticeably surged.
“We seem to have a better grasp of the simulations, which aligns with what we observe on the track,” he elaborated.
“That has been a challenge over the past eighteen months. We are witnessing substantial performance improvements in the tunnel. We’re gaining a clearer understanding of the car’s requirements to increase speed and the necessary setup configurations.
“In general, our strides are becoming more substantial. I believe we are making significant progress.”
Mercedes ‘Heartened’ by Narrowing Gap with Red Bull
Even though Mercedes has made considerable strides with its updated car, Wolff is conscious that there’s still a long way to go before they can pose a substantial challenge to Red Bull.
Max Verstappen’s winning margin in Canada last weekend was less than in previous races this year, raising optimism that the lead battle could be tightening.
However, Wolff remains measured about his team’s potential, despite Montreal being a less favourable track for their car.
“Given our car’s current performance, largely in high-speed corners, we didn’t anticipate performing well in Canada,” he admitted.
“It’s promising to see we’re not far behind. But it’s crucial to remember that Max is comfortably leading. Although I wouldn’t say he’s entirely relaxed, he certainly has an easier time up front. We still have a significant gap to close.”
When questioned whether he thought the previous weekend was the first time Red Bull seemed to feel pressure on a standard track this year, Wolff responded, “No, not at all. I think the gap is still too large to truly believe Max is under any pressure. I’m unsure of the exact advantage in this race, was it two tenths? Regardless, it was still considerable.”
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