Toto Wolff outlines Austrian GP target for Lewis Hamilton and George Russell

Lewis Hamilton has scored two consecutive podiums amid Mercedes bringing upgrades to the W14.

Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff is cautious but optimistic about his team’s chances at the upcoming Austrian Grand Prix, expecting the Red Bull Ring to be a more favourable battleground for the improved W14 compared to the previous race in Canada. 

As Mercedes seeks to close the gap to Red Bull, Wolff believes that further progress can be made at his home race.

Reflecting on the Canadian Grand Prix, where Lewis Hamilton secured a podium finish, albeit dropping a position from his result in Spain, Wolff acknowledged the positive aspects of their performance. 

“Although we didn’t get both cars to the chequered flag, a podium was a solid result and we saw encouraging signs from our updated package,” he stated.

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With Austria being a special weekend for Wolff, who hails from the country, the team boss expressed his personal connection to the Red Bull Ring. 

“It’s my home race, and I have good memories from the track; both with the team but also from my early years racing there and teaching as an instructor,” he shared. 

Additionally, the Austrian Grand Prix marks the second sprint of the season, adding intrigue to the weekend.

Describing the challenges of the Spielberg circuit, Wolff highlighted its seemingly straightforward layout on paper but emphasised the difficulty of piecing together a perfect lap. 

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“It’s a short lap in Spielberg and looks straightforward on paper; several long straights broken up by a range of slow, medium-speed, and fast corners. But it’s a challenging one to put together and get right,” he explained.

Building on the momentum gained over the past two races, Mercedes aims to continue its positive trajectory with the W14. 

While the team anticipates better performance at the Red Bull Ring compared to Canada, Wolff stressed that they would not take anything for granted. 

The focus remains on maximizing performance and delivering strong results. 

“As always, we will be working hard to maximize our performance and deliver strong results,” Wolff affirmed.

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Currently sitting in second place in the Constructors’ Championship, Mercedes faces an uphill battle, trailing Red Bull by a significant margin of 154 points. 

Red Bull’s dominant performance has seen them win all eight grand prix races in the 2023 F1 season thus far. 

Despite the considerable gap, Mercedes remain determined to challenge their rivals and close the points deficit.