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Lauda's Absence Felt as Mercedes Struggles Continue

Lauda’s Absence Felt as Mercedes Struggles Continue

19/05/2024

Mathias Lauda believes his father would have relentlessly pursued solutions to Mercedes F1’s current struggles, highlighting the importance of detailed optimization in modern F1.

Niki Lauda might have already ended three years of declining performance at Mercedes F1.

Mathias Lauda  Niki Lauda

This is the viewpoint of Mathias Lauda, son of the former co-owner and non-executive chairman, as the once-dominant team continues to struggle to regain podiums and victories in the current ground effect rules era.

Lauda believes the problem lies clearly with the chassis.

“The most important element in Formula 1 right now is the chassis. The more downforce, the better.”

“McLaren has a much better package because the engine is the same in both cases. Mercedes simply can’t get out of the crisis.”

Niki Lauda passed away at the age of 70 in mid-2019, when Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton were still dominating the previous era of regulations that ended in 2021.

Although in a Non-Executive Role, Lauda Was Known in His Later Years as a Close Advisor and Confidant to Toto Wolff

Mathias Lauda believes Wolff sorely misses this contribution.

“My father would have harassed his guys until they figured out why the car wasn’t working! He simply wouldn’t have let go and would have dug into every detail.”

Former Mercedes F1 Executive Director Paddy Lowe, however, reveals the extent of the team’s current slump.

Former Mercedes F1 Executive Director Paddy Lowe

“Modern F1 is mainly about optimizing details. It’s generally difficult to implement major changes. With budget caps, it’s very hard to catch up.”

“If, for some reason, you lose three, four, or six months, you’re behind for a long time, even if you improve. That’s the situation Mercedes is currently in.”

“And it’s uncertain if the connection can be restored. The situation could even worsen.”

The fifth anniversary of Niki Lauda’s death is approaching.

“My father is still here,” Mathias continues. “Whether I hear a song that reminds me of him or think about how he approached life.”

“I’m getting older too and I see a lot of his traits coming out in me.”

Lauda's Absence Felt as Mercedes Struggles Continue

Lauda’s Absence Felt as Mercedes Struggles Continue. Lauda’s Absence Felt as Mercedes Struggles Continue

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