Mercedes ready to take advantage of Red Bull penalty

Mercedes have had a torrid year, currently without a race win going into the final two rounds of the 2022 season.

It has not been the year that Mercedes would have wanted coming into the new era of Formula 1, with the Silver Arrows on course to finish the season winless, spending the first half of the year battling with the rest of the midfield rather than their rivals Red Bull and Ferrari.

The team struggled with porpoising early on in the year and lost time in the development battle trying to fix this problem, while Red Bull went from strength to strength on the road to the constructors’ championship.

Toto Wolff has fired a warning shot at Mercedes rivals now, claiming that the team know exactly what they got wrong this year and have the capability to be back to their best next year, as Wolff would say, next year everybody has a target on their backs.

“There is no team that is winning every single world championship over its lifetime, and that has happened,” he said.

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“And it has happened because we got the physics wrong. There is nothing mystical about it suddenly.

“We have great people, equipment, infrastructure, financial resources, and what we got wrong was just how the car works.”

The Brackley based team have come on leaps and bounds since the season begun, challenging for pole positions and wins over the previous two race weekends, showing that Mercedes have not disappeared, they just stepped into the shadows for a while.

If it was not for an unsuccessful strategy in Mexico, Lewis Hamilton could have secured his first win of the season, and this will come as reassurance for the team that they can produce a car capable of challenging Red Bull.

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Wolff has agreed that Red Bull will have a head start going into 2023 off the back of their 2022 dominance, but suggests that a legacy isn’t formed over one year, and that his team will be doing all they can to better them next year.

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“We may have lost eight to ten months in that development battle because we couldn’t figure out what was wrong. So there’s definitely a challenge ahead of us.

“But we’re playing the long winded game. Everyone here. We don’t judge the team by one year or one weekend, but by how we have been able to win multiple world titles in the long run.”

Red Bull will have to deal with a 10% reduction in their aerodynamic testing time next year, and should Mercedes get their physics right and use the testing advantage they’ll have, Red Bull might feel the effects of their punishment.