Mercedes Won’t Compete To Win With Other Cars
Mercedes Won’t Compete To Win With Other Cars – Known to downplay their chances of success during testing. Despite having won the last eight constructors’ titles in a row. But Lewis Hamilton seemed genuinely concerned at the end of the 2022 preseason that the Silver Arrows wouldn’t be competing for the win earlier this year.
Mercedes unveiled their radically revised W13 challenger on the first morning of the Bahrain Official Pre-Season Test. Shows off drastically lowered machine sidepods and reshaped floors. But the difficulty is with porpoising, where a car bounces as it loses and regains downforce. And the overall balance at W13 conspires to worry seven-times champion Hamilton ahead of the season opener for the Bahrain Grand Prix on March 20.
“Right now, I don’t think we’re going to compete for the win,” Hamilton said on Saturday afternoon. Obviously next week we will show our pace, which is much better. But I think others may be surprised. People keep talking about us looking down on ourselves, but this year is a little different. “We are not the fastest at the moment,” he added. I think Ferrari looks to be the fastest. Maybe Red Bull and then maybe us or McLaren, I don’t know. But at the moment we are not at the top.
From the outside, the situation looked similar to last year, when the Mercedes W12 looked difficult to control in the Bahrain test, only for Hamilton to beat Max Verstappen to take victory in the opening race at the same venue. But Hamilton said the scenario was different this year – adding that, despite his doubts, he still believed Mercedes cars had potential.
It’s Hard To Find The Rhythm Of The Speed
It feels very different [until 2021],” Hamilton said. “It’s not going to look as good as last year, with the difficult sessions we had… and then moving on to racing. I think we have a much bigger challenge this time and a turnaround that will take longer. From what I’m told, we have a lot of speed to find.
But there’s potential in our car to get us there,” he added. “We’ve just learned to extract it and fix some issues, which we’re working on. Everyone is doing an amazing job at the factory, working as hard as they can, but we have several hurdles to overcome.
Despite Hamilton’s lack of confidence, Mercedes did at least run reliably throughout the Official Bahrain Pre-Season Test, recording 385 leading laps in the final three days. The Bahrain Grand Prix season opens next weekend on 18-20 March.