Mercedes has been struggling since the introduction of the cost cap era. On the other hand, their rival, Red Bull, has been experiencing steady growth since 2021. The Milton Keynes team has won 24 out of the last 25 races. They are on their way to win the back-to-back constructor titles. Red Bull is still unbeaten in the ongoing season after 14 races. Max Verstappen has won 12 out of these races, with Sergio Perez winning a couple of Grands Prix at the start of the 2023 season. However, Mercedes is still looking for their first victory this season. It has been a kind of experimental journey with the W14 car this year for the Silver Arrows.
They have changed the car constantly since the Monaco Grand Prix. First of all, the W14 car did not have any side pods. Later, in Monte Carlo, Mercedes presented the B-spec version of the W14 car with new side pods along with front and floor suspension. Moreover, in the British Grand Prix, Mercedes introduced a new front wing to help the car gain speed across the slow-speed corners. However, after 14 races, Toto Wolff suggests the W14 is still a “Surprise Box” for his team.
Toto Wolff Claims They Don’t Yet Have The Precise Idea Of The Car’s Strength Or Weakness
Moreover, Mercedes had a very inconsistent campaign this season with the car. Recently, in an interview, Toto Wolff mentioned, “I wish we would have a better understanding of the car after 14 races, but sadly enough, it is still a surprise box for us.” Moreover, Toto Wolff believes no team on the grid is working on the current cars anymore. Everybody must be working on the next year’s car. However, Mercedes would hope for a better race in Singapore than in Monza.
But Toto Wolff said there are a lot of nuances in these races. Hence, he would not bring up the fact that Mercedes has performed better on high downforce tracks than in low downforce tracks like in Monza and Spa. Moreover, Toto Wolff says that it is always a fight every time they get to these races, even from the get-go. Hence, he can’t predict if they will do well in the Marina Bay track.
Mercedes Struggling Deeply With The Car’s Fluctuating Performances In 2023
However, the best result for the Mercedes team so far came in the Spanish Grand Prix this season. It has been their only double podium finish this season so far. However, Red Bull’s Max Verstappen won that race too. But Lewis Hamilton finished at P2, and George Russell finished at P3. A few races later, in the Hungarian Grand Prix, Lewis Hamilton was faster than Max Verstappen to earn pole position. However, it did not help the Mercedes driver on the final race day of the Hungarian Grand Prix.
As Max Verstappen won yet again. Sergio Perez finished third in Hungary. Hamilton could not even get a podium finish on his lucky Hungaroring track. However, the last race in Monza was just terrible for Mercedes as Ferrari drivers and, of course, the Red Bull drivers finished higher up the table. In the Italian Grand Prix, it was Red Bull in P1 and P2. On the other hand, Ferrari took the P3 and P4 spots. But the Mercedes drivers managed to finish at P5 and P6.