LONDON, United Kingdom (UOL-FOLHAPRESS) – Mercedes has never come close to winning any of the championship’s first eight races, with the car often running a second per lap slower than Red Bull, which leads the table by a margin. Leads. , or Ferrari. But there is an expectation within the Brackley team that the story may be different this weekend at the British GP. So different, that even if the rivals suffer, they believe in fighting for victory.
Unlike in previous races, where they managed to light up the podium when Red Bull and Ferrari drivers suffered from crashes and accidents, Silverstone Mercedes believe it can get close and take advantage, even if it doesn’t. Don’t just retire rivals.
It’s quite a gamble, if we remember that, after a safety car period at the end of the last GP on lap 16, in Canada, Lewis Hamilton, who was third, took 12 with respect to the leader, despite Max Verstappen. Lost. Carlos was defending from Sainz and thus was turning slower than he was walking.
But Mercedes’ confidence comes from the positive signs they last carried in mid-May in Spain in a permanent F1 circuit with fast corners and smooth asphalt. In that GP, Russell was 33 seconds behind winner Max Verstappen after 66 laps.
Since then, Mercedes has not only better understood the floor that started in Barcelona and what was crucial to that leap, but also has time to prepare for the second part of the update, which started at Silverstone. Furthermore, they know Red Bull is expected to have difficulties on the British track and that Ferrari is not having a good time, having lost the last six races in a row.
“Our factory people dare not say, but we are cautiously optimistic that we will have a more competitive weekend than the previous ones. I think some of the characteristics of the circuit match our car well, but our They don’t have the equipment, the team’s technical boss James Allison explained to British TV Sky Sports.
Will the jump continue?
In fact, Allison himself admits that Mercedes has already been so puzzled by the car this season that it is unclear how it will perform on a significant portion of the Silverstone track in sharp corners of maggots and beckets. To do well on the British circuit, it’s important to keep the car balanced and move around at a lot of speed in those corners. “And maybe if Red Bull stumbles, who knows, but I hope we can have a better weekend.”
That doubt from Alison was what Hamilton had after the podium in Canada, his second of the year. “I think we’re better at high and medium speed corners than low speed corners, but we have jumps, so I don’t know how it will be in sharp corners like cops and such. It will be for us. Interesting.”
The progress Mercedes showed in Barcelona was in the sense of being able to control porpoising, floor jumping movements of aerodynamic origin. So they were able to set the car closer to the ground, in a more competitive way. The problem is that the suspension, especially the one the team used in the Azerbaijan GP, caused the car to rebound, now suffering from another impact, bouncing.
Hamilton’s question is whether Mercedes will have to ride low enough to perform well enough to return bouncing. This is something the team will try to avoid with the new additions making its debut at Silverstone. “The data shows that our solutions are quite appropriate not only for the next race but also for the future,” said team principal Toto Wolff. “In a normal race, I think it would be difficult. We have to be honest with ourselves and say that at the moment we are a little behind Ferrari and Red Bull,” said technical director Mike Elliott.
Caution in Red Bull
On the side of the championship leaders, Christian Horner is cautious about two of the next three stages. “I see no reason why Mercedes shouldn’t be strong at Silverstone and Paul Ricard as well. I think Ferrari will be strong at Silverstone as well. It may be a more difficult track for us because of the nature of the track.”
Red Bull doesn’t promise any major new features for the car in these four races before the August break, which marks the middle of the season. According to Horner, the team will bring in new components with improvements only as replacements for parts that have reached the end of their useful lives rather than as major upgrades.
Who promises news Ferrari, which also introduced the rear wing set for Silverstone at the previous race in Canada, in Leclerc’s car.