There’s no doubt that 2021 regulation changes favour teams running high-rake concepts, such as Red Bull, while they handicap low-rake concept teams like Mercedes. It’s not a stretch to assume the FIA made the changes to try and stop Mercedes’ seven-year domination of the sport.
Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff says his team will not whine about this, and will instead try to do the best they can with the car they currently have, as it would be impossible to switch to a high-rake concept now.
“Definitely, there is a pattern,” the Austrian said.
“Low-rake cars seem to have lost more [downforce] than high-rake cars. That is the situation.
“If we would say we were just penalised by the regulations then we wouldn’t be racers, we wouldn’t be fighters.
“We just need to get that car in the sweet spot so it can combat with our competitors.”
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Wolff also says it’s not just the rake of the car that is impacting Mercedes’ performance, but also the Bahrain circuit itself.
“I think the car is just not in a happy place and Bahrain was not a particularly happy place last year either.
“This is a track layout and asphalt that Red Bull seems to master better than us but this is not at all an explanation that is acceptable.
“We just need to do what we have done in the last years, understand the car and the tyres, optimise the details and then we will be back in the fight,” concluded Wolff.