Lewis Hamilton wants Mercedes to have everything in place for the W13 to be competitive in time for the British Grand Prix later this month, and that may well test Toto Wolff’s previous remarks. It’s been a frustrating season so far for perennial winners Mercedes with both Ferrari and Red Bull way out in front.
Mercedes have made small steps in recent races to move further ahead of the midfield pack. But they’re still someway short from battling for race wins after seven races with the Azerbaijan Grand Prix up next.
That will quickly be followed by the race at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Canada a week later before F1 returns to Europe for the British Grand Prix. Hamilton has had unprecedented success in both Canada and Silverstone and has made it clear he wants to be competing for a race win at the latter race.
“I hope by the time we get to the British Grand Prix at Silverstone we will have the car as we want it – to be able to fight with Ferrari and Red Bull,” said Hamilton. “It would be nice if we can give them a run for their money at our home race.
“I know that work is going on tirelessly in the factory to make progress with the car. And I have no doubt we will get it right sooner or later.”
Mercedes raised eyebrows in pre-season testing when they unveiled their eye-catching new design on the W13. Reports at the time indicated that the sidepod-less design was producing impressive results in the simulator.
That has failed to translate on the track so far, but Wolff has been consistent in his belief that they’re heading in the right direction with their design. Wolff said last month: “We have committed ourselves to the current concept and we have to.
If you don’t believe in it and you also give the other concept a 50 per cent chance, you should switch immediately.”
But Hamilton has now given Mercedes a deadline to turn things around, testing the team on their current concept. Both Red Bull and Ferrari have a similar design on their cars and are reaping the benefits so far.
Hamilton is already 75 points adrift of the championship leaders and has conceded that he won’t be battling for the title this year. However, the 37-year-old will still want to keep up his record of winning an F1 race in every year he’s been in the sport so far.
It took until the 10th race of the season back in 2013 during Hamilton’s first season at Mercedes to pick up his one and only race that year. The British Grand Prix will be the 10th race this season and Hamilton is clearly hoping to mark that milestone with his 104th F1 victory.