Toto Wolff: “We misinterpreted some of the regulations”

© Sebastian Kawka for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix ltd.

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff explains what happened with Mercedes’ car in 2022 and admits the team “got the physics wrong”.

After eight extremely successful season, in 2022 Mercedes’ unprecedented run at the top of Formula 1 ended.

The main issue the team faced was their troubled car, which was plagued by a myriad of issues, the biggest of which was its incessant bouncing.

In a new interview with The Times, Toto gave a simple explanation of what went wrong.

“We got the physics wrong,” the Austrian said.

“It’s no myth. We misinterpreted some of the regulations. We put too much emphasis on seeking performance in a car that was supposed to run on the ground, very low.

“But you can’t run it so low, because it was hitting the ground. So we had to lift it up, which changed things again. It sounds like a trivial explanation, but this is the reality.”

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Asked if he wished he was more involved in the development of the W13, Toto said his role is not to “meddle in technical decisions”, which he leaves to the experts within the team.

“We’ve been lucky to win eight constructors’ titles in a row, which is unprecedented. And that is due to the fact that we empower the staff here.

“If I started to meddle in technical decisions after such a winning streak that would be odd. So at that stage, I am in observer mode. I try to guide from a human perspective: ‘Is there anything we need in additional resources?’

“Having said that, I am responsible as the CEO and co-owner, and we as a team got it wrong,” Wolff concluded.

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