According to Toto Wolff, Mercedes is currently the third fastest team in the starting field and this is also reflected in the performance of the Germans so far. With 95 points, the team is currently number three in the constructors’ championship, but is already well behind Red Bull (151) and Ferrari (157). During practice in Miami on Friday, the W13 showed occasional glimpses of progress and this data has been extensively analyzed at Mercedes headquarters over the past few days. The Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya is not unfamiliar territory for any team, making it the perfect track to see if F1 cars have improved since winter testing.
“Hopefully we can convert this data into improvements,” opens the Austrian team boss, who then concentrates on the Spanish Grand Prix weekend. “We drove a lot here during the winter tests, but with a car that has evolved a lot since then. It’s the perfect place to correlate the data. We hope to take another step forward.” The Spanish circuit is a good all-rounder with technical sections and long straights. “So that puts every aspect of the car to the test,” Wolff continues. “However, it has never been a good track for overtaking. It will be interesting to see how much of a spectacle the current F1 cars will create.”
Before the race in Miami, Wolff said Mercedes sees every weekend as an experiment. The W13 is a radical design by the gentlemen and ladies of Brackley. The zero pod concept caused quite a stir when it was unveiled in Bahrain, but Mercedes now faces an important and difficult decision. In fact, the British racing team doubts its potential. At F1 testing in Barcelona earlier this season, the stable came with regular sidepods, so this track is an appropriate place to compare both concepts.