United States GP: Toto Wolff reveals expectations for final aero upgrade

Mercedes sit 67 points behind Ferrari in the battle for second in the Constructors' Championship, with four rounds of 2022 remaining.

Mercedes have just four races remaining to somewhat save something from their disastrous season, with many tipping this weekend’s United States Grand Prix as the Silver Arrow’s final chance to win this year.

Given their sheer dominance since 2014, it seems wrong to say that the Germans haven’t won a race yet this year with just four events remaining; however, that is the situation Mercedes currently find themselves in.

The side are looking set to finish third in the Constructors’ Championship after falling further behind Ferrari at the recent Asia double-header, where the side failed to claim a single podium.

Ferrari, on the other hand, claimed a double podium at Singapore and a sole rostrum at Japan, highlighting their superiority over the Brackley-based team.

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Mercedes are hoping their “final update package” of the season will help close the gap to Ferrari and runaway leaders Red Bull this weekend, although, Mercedes boss Toto Wolff has disregarded any optimism, after admitting that it “won’t drastically change” anything.

“The double-header in Singapore and Japan was a frustrating one for the team, as we didn’t put ourselves in the clean air we needed to maximise the race pace of the car,” said Wolff.

“We want to end this season strongly and the results of the last two races only make us more determined to do so.

“We need to use the limited track time available to make strides forward for this season and generate as much learning as we can in the development race for 2023, those two aims are one and the same.

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“Our final update package of the year will be brought to Austin. It won’t drastically change our fortunes but we’re hopeful it will bring us a step forward and closer to the front runners.

“Austin is a great city that we all love visiting. The Circuit of the Americas is a challenging track that often produces great racing, so we’re excited to be back this year and hopefully put on a great show for the fans.”

This weekend’s upgrade for the Circuit of the Americas, which Lewis Hamilton has claimed victory at five times and Mercedes four, is specifically an “aero development” as revealed by the team’s head of trackside engineering Andrew Shovlin.

Shovlin revealed that the target of the upgrade is to “carry” what they’ve learnt into next season, with the W13 also set to be much lighter than usual.

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“It’s our final step of aero development and that will hopefully give us a bit more performance,” said Shovlin in a Mercedes video.

“But importantly with every step, we are learning more and more and that learning we can carry into next year.

“Also, we have taken some weight out of components that will hopefully get the car closer to the weight limit.”