2022 Brazil GP: Toto Wolff delivers bad news for Lewis Hamilton fans

Toto Wolff expects Mercedes to be in for a difficult race at Interlagos.

Interlagos is a fan favourite on the Formula 1 calendar, with the banked corners and Senna S section making it one of the most iconic tracks of the year.

Lewis Hamilton won his first ever world championship in Sao Paulo back in 2008, and has since won the Grand Prix three times, in 2016, 2018 and 2021, the third most victories at the circuit, tied with Sebastian Vettel.

The seven-time world champion will be looking to get his fourth win in Brazil, and first win of the season, at the race on Sunday, but Mercedes boss Toto Wolff has played down the team’s chances.

“We’re proud to be coming back to Brazil, with Lewis having been made an honorary citizen this week and having had such good memories there in the past,” he said.

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“On paper, it shouldn’t be quite as strong a circuit for us as Mexico, but regardless, we want to keep up our momentum from recent races, so we will keep working hard to hopefully be in the mix once again.”

Mercedes have had a year to forget, struggling heavily with porpoising early on in the season and losing a lot of time in the development race to Red Bull and Ferrari while trying to solve the problem.

In recent weeks the team have begun to look more like themselves, with Lewis Hamilton and George Russell both qualifying well in Austin and Mexico, with Hamilton in particular going on to challenge Max Verstappen on race day, coming up short both times.

While the wait for the first win of the season for the Silver Arrows goes on, Wolff says he is proud of his team regardless for turning around what started as a disastrous year for the team.

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“We didn’t optimise every opportunity in Mexico, but we still managed to score good points with Lewis’s great drive to the podium and George’s P4 finish,” he explained.

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“It was encouraging to be in the fight for the win, showing how far we’ve come since the start of the year.

“While we’re always aiming for top spot, we should be proud of that progress and we’re aiming to keep it going through the end of the year and into 2023.”

Having recently been made an honorary citizen of Brazil, Hamilton will hope that a small sense of home advantage can will him on to a win on Sunday, to end his winless streak.