Mercedes: What’s gone wrong at the F1 and can they recover?
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Lewis Hamilton and George Russell will not suffer from porpoising issues at the British Grand Prix as their surface is smooth, according to Silverstone CEO Stuart Pringle. The boss claimed their circuit was as “smooth as a baby’s bottom” and said any porpoising at the weekend was not down to the track.
This could play into the hands of Hamilton and Russell who have appeared better on traditional layouts than bumpy street tracks. The pair seemed closer to the pace in Barcelona but struggled in Azerbaijan and Canada which had bumpy surfaces.
Speaking to Express Sport, Pringle said: “Our circuit is really smooth. There will be no bumping. If [there is] porpoising, it isn’t because our track is bumpy. It’s as smooth as a baby’s bottom.
“You wait, I think Mercedes aero is going to come into its own in this one which will be great because we’ve got George and Lewis at the front for the British fans.”
Mercedes boss Toto Wolff noticed the car was slightly quicker at the hairpin in Canada which had been newly resurfaced. Silverstone was last resurfaced in 2019 just months after F1 visited the venue.
This prompted him to raise expectations for the team’s chances at the British Grand Prix. He explained: “You can see at the hairpin where they put new asphalt in there, that’s where we suffer less from the stiffness of the car, which is the main problem.”
When asked if the team could compete at Silverstone, Wolff replied: “I would hope so.” He added: “Silverstone was good to us in the past and the circuit is smoother than the last three ones but it’s not Barcelona.
“So now we should manage our own expectations and just really grind away, look at the data and come up with some sensible solutions, not only for Silverstone but going forward as well. If we are able to run the car low then we can be competitive.”
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Mercedes has confirmed they will be bringing upgrades to Silverstone in a bid to close the gap to Ferrari and Red Bull. The team’s technical director Mike Elliott said: “One thing you can be sure of is we will push as hard as we can.
“We will be bringing new bits to Silverstone, we will be trying to push the car forward, trying to get some pace from the car we’ve got or from the package we’ve got as well as the new bits we are going to add to it.”
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