Toto Wolff comments on ‘giving up’ 2023 season amid Lewis Hamilton talks

Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff has accepted the team needs to make “lots of changes” if they are to challenge Red Bull.

Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff is standing strong in his mission to improve their 2023 challenger.

Lewis Hamilton showed the potential the Silver Arrows have in Hungary, as he secured his first pole position of the season since 2021.

However, the car failed to have strong enough race pace to compete against its rivals, dropping from P1 at the start to P4 by the chequered flag, almost 40 seconds behind race winner Max Verstappen.

Aware of the competition others present, including the surging McLaren, Mercedes is looking at ways to adapt their current model to close the gap to the current title leaders.

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Even after narrowly missing out on victory in Hungary, Wolff emphasises that Mercedes is far from conceding the season. 

He draws inspiration from McLaren’s recent progress, showcasing how mid-season developments can genuinely impact a team’s performance. 

With this determination, Mercedes aims to maintain their competitive edge and strive for success in the ongoing championship battle.

Wolff stated, “I wouldn’t want to give up any season… 

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“Whatever it was, they gained a second probably and leapfrogged Aston Martin, Ferrari, and moved in as really strong contenders at the beginning of the season are now nowhere. 

“We just need to continue working, chipping away at our understanding and unlocking potential in the car…

“We won’t give up.”

Mercedes is far behind Red Bull, with the two split by 229 points. 

However, they can take comfort in their now 39 point lead over Aston Martin. 

When asked if Mercedes’ current philosophy had the potential to catch Red Bull in 2024, Wolff acknowledged the need for significant changes.

He admitted, “I think we need a lot of changes in 2024. 

“The direction our team is developing is really quite interesting, and we see opportunities, and we are not shying away from leaving no stone unturned, looking at every single concept.”

Despite the daunting gap to Red Bull, Mercedes remains committed to pushing forward in the current season while also planning for a stronger future. 

Wolff’s dedication to continuous development and improvement reflects the team’s determination to remain a formidable force in the competitive world of Formula 1. 

As Mercedes analyses and strategises, fans can anticipate an exciting battle in the races ahead.

Hamilton’s impressive pole position at the Hungaroring brought a glimmer of hope for Mercedes, indicating that the team’s performance was not entirely lost in the shadow of Red Bull’s dominance. 

However, the race exposed the challenges they still face in translating strong qualifying performances into race wins.

While Verstappen’s victory further cemented Red Bull’s position at the top, Hamilton’s struggle to maintain pace throughout the race highlighted areas where Mercedes must improve. 

The Australian Grand Prix provided crucial insights into their car’s weaknesses and where they need to make changes to compete at Red Bull’s level.

Mercedes’ determination to remain competitive extends beyond the current season. 

Wolff emphasised that the team is already looking ahead to 2024 and planning significant alterations to their approach. 

The team recognises that they must keep evolving to bridge the gap with Red Bull and secure their position as a leading contender in Formula 1.

Although Mercedes is attempting to reel in Red Bull, the reigning Constructors’ Champions have been impressively consistent this year, securing every race victory on the calendar so far.

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In a bid to crack that win streak, Mercedes has been diligently analysing data, seeking a deeper understanding of their car’s potential, and continuously refines their strategies. 

“We are unwavering in our determination to keep pushing forward, unlocking the full potential of our car,” emphasised Wolff. 

“Giving up is not an option.”