Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and George Russell yet again failed to live up to expectations this season. They just can’t get a break, it seems, in 2023. The W14 car has been really weak in low downforce tracks, and it caused a lot of trouble for Mercedes. On the other hand, in high downforce tracks, such as in Marina Bay, Mercedes drivers did relatively well. However, it seems they can’t maintain consistency in terms of the performance of the car.
It seems like the team has not yet figured out the strengths and limitations of the car. But Mercedes is looking to get all the data available to increase their chances of building a strong car for the next season. However, all eyes were on the Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and George Russell during the final laps of the Suzuka race. Apparently, the Brackley team was trying to do what Carlos Sainz did in Singapore.
Lewis Hamilton Slams The Mercedes Strategy In The Japanese Grand Prix
Like Sainz let Lando Norris take DRS advantage in Singapore to block Mercedes, Toto Wolff’s team attempted to use the same method in Japan. Later, Lewis Hamilton told Racing News 365’s Fergal Walsh that it made no sense to give his teammate the DRS advantage. As it turns out, this strategy later cost Mercedes the Japanese Grand Prix. Moreover, Lewis Hamilton was not very subtle while talking about it in the post-race interview either. The seven-time champion added he knew instantly that Mercedes was trying to copy Carlos’s trick from the last race.
But Lewis Hamilton thought it was not a good idea. Moreover, Carlos Sainz noticed the strategy of Mercedes in the Japanese Grand Prix. Later, the Singapore GP winner of 2023 easily got past George Russell in Suzuka and reached right at the tail of Lewis Hamilton. Hence, the Mercedes star does not think it was an ideal strategy. Moreover, Lewis Hamilton thinks the strategy made it a lot harder for him in the last few laps of the Japanese Grand Prix. Hence, Hamilton believes his team should be grateful for the fifth and seventh-place finishes. It sure is better than sixth and seventh-place finishes.
Mercedes Mistakes Let McLaren Get Double Podium In Suzuka
Moreover, due to the flaws of the strategy, McLaren was able to get a double podium in Japan. It might affect them in the standings of the constructor’s championship. Red Bull may have confirmed their victory, but the second place is still up for grabs. Hence, if Mercedes makes more strategical mistakes like this in the remaining races, they can actually give away chances to McLaren or even Ferrari.
Only time will tell how costly such mistakes can be for Mercedes. Nobody knows when the Silver Arrows can end their win drought this season. But as usual, Red Bull had another strong weekend in Japan. As Max Verstappen ensured his team won the current constructor’s championship. The Dutchman goes even nearer to win the Driver’s World Championship three times in a row.