Sep.28 (GMM) Mercedes is struggling at the scene of the Russian GP at Sochi.
The Finnish broadcaster C More says Toto Wolff cancelled a scheduled interview after Friday practice in order to sit in on a crisis meeting about the team’s performance.
“We saw that we were behind in practice, but there are always meetings,” Valtteri Bottas told the broadcaster.
“Sometimes it’s happier, sometimes it’s a little darker.”
What is alarming Mercedes is that, after three defeats to Ferrari on the trot, it was Red Bull as well as the Italian team clearly faster on Friday.
“At the moment it’s a big question mark,” said championship leader Lewis Hamilton.
“The balance of the car is fine.”
Boss Wolff agrees: “We are too slow and we do not know why. If we are honest, we are only the third team here in Sochi.
“It looks like we have maybe not pushed the development forward as much as the others.”
He admitted that, in the short term, he is hoping forecasts of abysmal weather including heavy rain showers prove accurate.
“Anything that can turn the current order upside down is good for us,” said Wolff.
The faces at Red Bull are much brighter, after Dr Helmut Marko blamed a simulator error prior to Singapore for a weak performance.
“Sochi is our new Singapore,” beamed team boss Christian Horner.
The only issue is that if Max Verstappen continues to dominate and puts his Red Bull on pole, he will line up just sixth after taking a new Honda engine.
“We have the penalty but I’m not too worried,” Dutchman Verstappen said.
“If I had known how difficult Singapore would be, I would have preferred to have it there. But it’s only five places and you can overtake here.”
Horner agrees: “Our Honda engine now has the power of Mercedes and Renault. Only Ferrari stands out.”
Also happy in Russia is Ferrari boss Mattia Binotto, who said practice indicated that the team’s three-race winning form is no flash in the pan.
“We have now shown on a second track that our upgrade works,” he said. “(It works) on a lap and in the race, even if in general we are a bit stronger in qualifying.”
Grand Prix Tours is once again heading to Silverstone Circuit and the British Grand Prix. Guest of Grand Prix Tours are treated to an incredible series of events including a visit to the British Motor Museum and to a private tour of not one but two Formula 1 team factories. Follow the link above to learn more about our trip to the British Grand Prix.
Grand Prix Tours has once again orchestrated the perfect race weekend for the 2020 Belgian Grand Prix. Located just outside of the Belgian city of Spa is the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps home to the Belgian Grand Prix. Known as one of the most popular races on the Formula 1 calendar because of its scenic setting, racing heritage and famously challenging turns this race is a favorite of drivers and fans alike. Follow the link above to learn more about our trip to the Belgian Grand Prix.
Join Grand Prix Tours as we head to beautiful northern Italy and the Autodromo Nazionale Monza for the 2020 Italian Grand Prix. With a racing lineage that dates back more than 95 years, unpredictable weather patterns and the ravenous Ferrari fans makes this race and post-race celebration a spectacle like no other in professional motorsports. Follow the link above to learn more about our trip to the Italian Grand Prix.
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