‘I think it’s no secret’: George Russell admits Mercedes concern

Mercedes have been struggling with oversteer on the exit of corners during pre-season testing in Bahrain.

The 2022 season left Mercedes with a lot of work to do to return to winning ways this season, with multiple major issues needing to be solved before the team could become competitive.

The major changes in regulations appeared to catch the team off guard, as the struggled to a third-place finish in the constructors’ championship with only a single race win to their name.

The Silver Arrows were forced to spend the first half of last season solving a major porpoising issue, putting the rest of their performance-based development pathways on hold.

The team also had to work out what design path worked best under the new regulations, leaving the team with a lot of work to do to finally be capable of achieving that win in Brazil.

READ: 2023 Australian Grand Prix organiser makes big claim

During the ongoing pre-season tests in Bahrain, Mercedes have experienced only a couple of issues, with general reliability and pace not seeming to be an issue.

The W14 has been seen oversteering out of corners on multiple occasions, something with team principal Toto Wolff has blamed on the set up and the hot weather.

George Russell has now had two sessions in the W14 and while he admits that the team do have a balance problem, he claims it is a much nicer issues to have than what the team experienced last year.

“The entry phase has been improved. I think it’s no secret when you’re watching onboard videos that we are struggling a little bit with the balance, struggling a lot in the mid-corner,” he told Motorsport.com.

Article continues below

“But I think it’s a balance that is probably easier to solve than what we had last year. So even though there’s still a limitation, let’s say it’s a good problem to have.

“Definitely in terms of feeling, it feels a step in the right direction. Compared to this time 12 months ago, things are running a lot smoother.

READ: Haas show off VF-23 at Bahrain pre-season testing

“When we were here last year, there were a lot of alarm bells ringing with porpoising, We weren’t sure how to solve it, we were a bit lost.”

Having tasted victory in F1 for the first time last season, Russell will be hoping to challenge for regular race wins and even the title this season.

Russell’s ambitions are matched by his team, with Toto Wolff claiming that despite Mercedes’ pre-season struggles, the W14 is a car more than capable of winning races.