In the round-up: Mercedes say that they are working “urgently” to improve the performance of their W14 car after a disappointing start to the 2023 season in Bahrain
Mercedes “working urgently and calmly” after Bahrain “hurt”
In an open letter to its fans, Mercedes said their performance in the opening race in Bahrain “hurt” after Lewis Hamilton and George Russell finished fifth and seventh, respectively, beaten comfortably by the winning Red Bulls.
“First, we won’t panic or make knee-jerk reactions,” Mercedes said. “We have been open and searingly honest about where we find ourselves. And we are working urgently and calmly to build our recovery plan, focusing on what needs to happen short term, medium term, and long term to win.
“We already have developments in the pipeline for the next races – and there will be more to come. But this won’t be the work of a moment; there are no silver bullets in F1.”
Ferrari put in 2,000 practice pitstops over winter – Vasseur
Ferrari team principal Frederic Vasseur says that his team put in over 2,000 practice pit stops during the off season to improve their pit lane performance over last year.
The team earned criticism from pundits and fans due to errors made in strategy and in the pit lane in 2022, including Carlos Sainz Jnr having to wait in the pit box during the Dutch Grand Prix as the team did not have all his tyres ready. Vasseur said the team did extensive work on pit stops over the winter.
“I think they need something like 2,000 pit stops,” Vasseur said. “It went pretty well. You won’t win the race with a pit stop. You can lose a race with a pit stop, but you can’t win a race with a pit stop. So we have other areas to focus on.”
AlphaTauri needs “more grip or less drag”
Yuki Tsunoda says AlphaTauri need to either improve mid-corner grip or reduce drag after he was unable to pass Alexander Albon for the final point in last weekend’s Bahrain Grand Prix despite pressuring him for multiple laps.
“Currently our total ‘kph’ is slower than Williams, so that’s quite a lot – without DRS,” Tsunoda told media including RaceFans.
“Too much drag and at the same time, we don’t have much grip to regain that kind of drag. So we just need either grip or less drag.”
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On this day in motorsport
- 40 years ago today defending world champion Keke Rosberg beat the turbos to put his normally-aspirated Williams on pole for the season-opening race at Jacarepagua