29 July 2022
The Mercedes car has been slower than Red Bull and Ferrari this season; Mercedes was planning to do well at last weekend’s French Grand Prix held at the Circuit Paul Ricard with its flat track surface and high-speed corners.
And do well they did; Lewis Hamilton, in his 300th F1 race, finished second behind Max Verstappen in French GP, with George Russell third despite Mercedes’ pace deficit.
Max Verstappen extends his title lead to 63 points after Charles Leclerc threw away his chances with a dramatic race-ending crash.
There is still criticism around the Silver Arrows skinny sidepod design after they all but removed them ahead of the second pre-season test. The problem will involve changing the concept and learning the car all over again, especially as it has taken so long to resolve their ‘porpoising’ complications.
Toto Wolff has acknowledged that Mercedes are still weaker compared to their rivals on a one-lap pace and early on in races and is still working on a short-term solution.
The decision is that they will continue with what they have this year, but they are researching options for the 2023 season when the car could look very different.
An interesting fact; Aviation accounts for more than 25% of Mercedes’s carbon footprint. Mercedes are aiming to be net zero by 2030, and as a start, they plan to use Sustainable Aviation Fuel, which is renewable or waste-derived aviation fuel.