Toto Wolff says Mercedes need to look at Aston Martin after abysmal Bahrain GP

In terms of race pace, Aston Martin appear to be the second fastest team in the paddock so far this year.

Coming into the 2023 season, many fans expected Mercedes to take a massive leap forward and return to race winning contention following their disappointing 2022.

This was not the case however, as the Silver Arrows actually took a step backwards in Bahrain to become the fourth fastest team on the grid.

The team were never expected to be on the level of Ferrari and Red Bull from the very start but it was a massive surprise to see the team beaten by Aston Martin, a team to whom they supply their engines.

Aston Martin finished in seventh place in the constructors’ championship last season but so far this year the team look they could be genuine podium contenders all season.

READ: Jeremy Clarkson ‘fizzing’ at Bahrain GP after being ‘infuriated’

The team have signed Fernando Alonso to drive for them and poached a number of important staff members from the top teams in recent seasons, signing which have all helped the team on their journey to the top.

Mercedes will need to complete a similar journey to Aston Martin if they wish to compete at the top of the timing screens once again, such is the gap between the Silver Arrows and the likes of Red Bull.

With this in mind, Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff has said that his team should be inspired by Aston Martin’s recent progression.

“What Aston Martin were able to achieve is a good inspiration, because they came back from two seconds off the pace to being [the] second quickest team, probably, on the road,” said the Austrian.

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“With us, everything’s bad. Maybe the single-lap pace was still good.

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“But in the race, we saw the consequences and, to put it bluntly, we were lacking downforce. When you’re lacking downforce it’s sliding the tyres, [so] the tyres are going backwards.”

George Russell and Lewis Hamilton did their best to hold off the charging Fernando Alonso during the Bahrain Grand Prix but were powerless to prevent the Spaniard from achieving his 99th podium in Formula 1.

Mercedes will hope to improve the W14 quickly to allow them to battle with Ferrari and Aston Martin for second place in the constructors’ championship.