Rivals on Mercedes’ FP pace: “No one ever looks at the GPS very well”

© LAT Images for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd

Christian Horner, Sergio Perez, Lando Norris and Charles Leclerc give their comments on Mercedes’ improved pace during the Miami Grand Prix free practice sessions.

After four races of not being able to challenge the top runners, at the Miami Grand Prix free practice sessions, Mercedes’ car seemed to perform much better.

After George Russell managed to top FP2, several of the team’s rivals were asked to give their comments on this obvious improvement.

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner said it was not really a big surprise to him.

“I’ve been saying since pre-season that it’s only a matter of time before they sort themselves out and that’s starting to happen,” the Briton told Sky Sports F1.

“The characteristic of this circuit helps as well but you can see they’re starting to get on top of their issues.

“They’re looking competitive,” Horner concluded.


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His driver Sergio Perez said he never dismissed Mercedes.

“They’ve been quick in some places, they only needed small tweak to be up here,” the Mexican said.

“Nice to have them here, hopefully have a good race with anther team,” he concluded.

When McLaren’s Lando Norris was asked if he was surprised, he said there were indications all season that Mercedes is not as bad as it perhaps seemed to some.

“Not at all,” Norris said.

“They were what, P4/P5 in Bahrain? They’ve been strong all year. Just because they have some bouncing, everyone expects them to be terrible.



“They’re extremely strong in slow-speed corners. Mercedes have probably been one of the best cars in slow speed corners all season, just no one ever looks at the GPS very well and picks it up.

“So not a surprise in any way, it just makes us want to work even harder and try to get past them again,” the Briton concluded.

However, championship leader Charles Leclerc admitted he was surprised.

“The surprise is Mercedes for now,” he said.

“They seem to be very strong, and also on the high-fuel pace they were very strong. So they might be the surprise this weekend.

“And it would be nice if they could join the battle,” Leclerc concluded.

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