Toto Wolff says even Adrian Newey would have trouble with Mercedes’ issues

© Jiri Krenek for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd.

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff says Adrian Newey is “an incredible engineer”, but “at the moment, even the greatest magician would probably have a hard time solving our problems”.

After Mercedes qualified for the Miami Grand Prix in P7 and P8, Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff explained that the team did not understand why in one run they are very competitive, then immediately afterwards they are not.

“Hamilton puts out a lap that is a tenth away from everyone else at the same time in Q3. And then in the next run, nothing worked,” the Austrian to Sky Deutschland.

“That’s the science we don’t understand at the moment with tyres. That’s no excuse, but everyone else understands it better.”

Wolff admits the W15 is “just not good enough” at the moment.

“If you have a really fast car, [small mistakes] are lost. If a tenth of a second distinguishes between respectable and not respectable, then of course it makes everything worse.

“Our pit stops are very good. Nobody talks about that anymore. We changed the car but the performance is still not good enough. The others always take these steps forward and for us it’s incredibly slow and unsatisfactory.

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“It’s hair-tearing. You just have to admit and it’s annoying that we keep falling back into situations where the same problem keeps occurring, and that is that we overheat the tyres in the back.

“No explanations, no excuses. It’s just not good enough. Just keep arguing, keep developing and hopefully get on the right track like McLaren did last year.”

Three years into Formula 1’s ground-effect aerodynamic era, Mercedes have just one win on the board with George Russell P1 at the 2022 Brazilian Grand Prix. Red Bull have 42.

In the end, Toto said that Red Bull’s departing Chief Technical Officer Adrian Newey, one of the greatest designers in Formula 1 history, would find it difficult to get to the bottom of Mercedes’ issues.

“He is an incredible engineer, but at the moment even the greatest magician would probably have a hard time solving our problems,” he concluded.

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