Following on from last weekend’s Japanese Grand Prix, Mercedes have stated that a story which circulated is fake, regarding a QR code outside their hospitality suite.
During last weekend’s action at Suzuka, Lewis Hamilton was interviewed outside the team’s hospitality, where a QR code was visible.
This QR code in particular was to order drinks at the team’s bar, something several fans reportedly attempted after the code was seen on TV.
According to quotes from an insider, thousands of cans of Red Bull were ordered through the QR code for Hamilton, George Russell and team principal Toto Wolff, to the point where they ran out.
However, the comical story has since been quashed by the Silver Arrows, who have revealed there isn’t any truth in what’s been said.
Whilst Mercedes have acknowledged that the QR code in question was visible during an interview, it was only functional for those in the hospitality suite and not for fans sitting at home.
The Brackley-based team have also stated that the quotes which came out afterwards from a supposed insider, weren’t from a “Mercedes team source”.
“Whilst the QR code was visible during that interview, it was not functional for those not on-site (therefore people watching at home),” a Mercedes spokesperson told American site Jalopnik
“Therefore, there was no overwhelmed hospitality team and the quotes are not from a Mercedes team source.”
The potential Red Bull can incident aside, the Japanese GP was a disappointing one for Mercedes.
They saw their advantage over Ferrari in the Constructors’ Championship cut to just 20 points, after Hamilton finished fifth and Russell claimed seventh.
Mercedes simply didn’t have the pace to really challenge Red Bull, McLaren or Ferrari, with Hamilton having only finished ahead of Carlos Sainz thanks to a better strategy.
Significant work is needed by Mercedes to ensure that they beat Ferrari to second in the Constructors’ Championship, a battle which looks set to go all the way to Abu Dhabi.
One of the team’s biggest issues in Japan was that Hamilton and Russell spent more time fighting one another than Mercedes’ competitors, costing them valuable seconds.