Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff says the team has solved porpoising and will now “pick up the regular development” and start “catching up”.
The word coming out of Mercedes’ garage is that the team has finally made a breakthrough with their car.
“My belief is we have a race car more than a qualifying car,” the Austrian said.
“But we are going to see tomorrow how it went for the other ones [Red Bull and Ferrari].
“Red Bull, they always have the tendency of being very strong in the race, less so the Ferraris. Obviously, that is all glass-ball reading.
“I think we have done a solid step. You try to keep your expectations to a realistic point and where we slotted in today is somehow the best we could have expected.
“I don’t know how much gap, six-tenths to Leclerc? This is miles away in terms of qualifying pace so we will see.”
However the biggest positive news is that Mercedes finally understands what was causing their porpoising issue.
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“Yeah, we understand now,” Toto continued.
“It’s an aerodynamic effect that’s created from the floor swinging and it was difficult to come to that conclusion in a scientific way.
“But the team around [Technical Director] Mike Elliott and [Aerodynamics Director] Jarrod Murphy, they’ve done it, and that’s great.”
With porpoising solved, Wolff says the team is now ready to start catching up to Red Bull and Ferrari.
“The other teams have been able to continue to develop their car, while we have been a little bit in a pause moment to find out about the bouncing.
“So, as soon as we can pick up the regular development, as soon as we understand the tyres better now the bouncing is gone, I think we will be catching up.
“I believe that we have done a solid step in Barcelona. You’re trying to keep your expectations at a realistic point, and I think where we slotted in today is somehow the best we could have expected,” the Austrian concluded.