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Mercedes Closes Red Bull Gap

Mercedes Aims to Close Gap with Red Bull in 2024

13/02/2024

Toto Wolff is set on reducing Red Bull’s lead, enhancing Mercedes’ W15 performance, amid plans to part with Lewis Hamilton by 2025.

Toto Wolff is focused on narrowing the gap with Red Bull. “We’ve sped up a bit and unlocked more performance.” The start of the year for Mercedes F1 was marked by a shocking announcement for the team and staff: by 2025, they will have to move on without their star, Lewis Hamilton.

There’s still a full year of collaboration ahead, but the outcome remains uncertain as Mercedes has opted for a completely different direction with its W15, following the relatively unsuccessful W13 and W14, judging solely by their inability to compete for world titles or victories in most races.

Toto Wolff, the team principal, admits he’s uncertain about what 2024 holds for his team.

“One way or another, closing the gap to Red Bull is the goal. However, it’s clear that with stable regulations, catching up is always challenging.”

“It’s evident they’ve been in a league of their own, and even though we finished second last year in the World Championship, with Ferrari and McLaren breathing down our necks, we were still too far behind.”

Mercedes’ Push for Performance and Titles

“We’ve managed to speed up a bit and find more performance, more lap time, with our end-of-season testing for the W15. It’s promising, but I’m well aware it doesn’t guarantee anything. So, I’m focusing on the short to medium term: the start of the year and this car’s potential for the next two seasons.”

“We have a full year left with Lewis, so we want to give it our all now for him to secure his 8th title this year. Or at least the chance to compete for it.”

“Of course, on one hand, we want to succeed this year with both drivers, but then we must look towards 2026, and that will weigh on our minds.”

Indeed, Wolff acknowledges that 2025 will inevitably be sacrificed to prepare for 2026, as is the case for most teams. Does this explain Lewis Hamilton’s decision when told his driver has made a wise choice?

“I understand a driver’s concerns. We all share them. What might not have been so visible, even to him, is the team’s dynamics, the determination to move forward to do better. The mindset is: if we fall, we get back up.”

“I have no idea how many times we’ll fall. I do know we’ll always get back up. We’re behind Red Bull, and the others are not sleeping either.”

“But progress is always happening at Mercedes. And when we look back in ten or twenty years, there will be many more titles. Of course, this is a long-term perspective, not concerning Lewis.”

Mercedes Closes Red Bull Gap. Mercedes Closes Red Bull Gap

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