Mercedes Slithers Past Recent FIA Changes With Latest F1 Update

Published 06/17/2022, 5:00 PM EDT
Formula One F1 – Azerbaijan Grand Prix – Baku City Circuit, Baku, Azerbaijan – June 10, 2022 General view of the Mercedes logo on the front nose of a Mercedes car before practice REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger

Ahead of the Canadian Grand Prix, a new technical directive from the FIA is set to hurt Mercedes. With TD 39, mainly dealing with the complaints of the drivers after Baku.

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Complaints mainly related to the back were considered to be a serious issue by the FIA; which ultimately led to intervention in Montreal. And while drivers welcome this move by the Federation, the same cannot be said for the teams.

With concerns that it could affect the performance of the cars, teams definitely have a lot of work ahead. Meanwhile, Mercedes is tipped to be the biggest loser of the new directive. 

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What has Mercedes brought to Canada in order to combat the rule changes?

As reported by AMuS, Mercedes had anticipated such a rule post-Baku and have brought upgrades to Canada. With a limit on the number of vertical oscillations that the car can experience, it seems difficult for Mercedes to dial in the car at the moment. “Mercedes has a package of measures in store for Montreal that is intended to reduce the hopping of the car,” says the article. 

Mercedes has stiffened the bottom floor and added slits on the edges. It has also been reported that the FIA’s offer to attach a second support strut has been accepted by the team. Amid a drop in performance from last year, Mercedes have been trying to get back to the front of the field. Being miles behind the dueling pair of Red Bull and Ferrari, it seems like a three-way battle seems very unlikely. The bigger question is whether the Canada update will be enough to negate the consequences of the new directive. 

Formula One F1 – Azerbaijan Grand Prix – Baku City Circuit, Baku, Azerbaijan – June 10, 2022 Mercedes’ George Russell during practice REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed
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With the possibility of losing out on performance, Mercedes will have no choice but to raise the height of the car. In Baku, the eight-time constructors were seen to be running the car very close to the ground. However, there seems to be further complexity because Mercedes can only increase the height of the W13, which is limited by the geometry of the rear suspension. As someone from the team notes, “At some point, we can’t go any higher.”

George Russell makes major admission about Silver Arrows

Even though Mercedes have been behind the leaders but best of the mid-field, its podiums have been at the expense of other teams. Bahrain podium was due to double Red Bull retirement, Australia due to another Red Bull retirement and a Ferrari’s misfortune in Barcelona and Baku has helped them. However, George Russell thinks otherwise. 

Formula One F1 – Azerbaijan Grand Prix – Baku City Circuit, Baku, Azerbaijan – June 10, 2022 Mercedes’ George Russell before practice REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger

“This is a championship where you’ve got the chance to score every single race,” Russell began saying. “And it doesn’t matter how fast your car is, if you’re not scoring those points, then your tally is not going to increase.” 

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The four-time podium sitter praised the employees back at Brackley but believes that Mercedes can’t rely on others’ misfortune for podiums.   

WATCH THE STORYWhen F1 Drivers Had a Blast on Top Gear Featuring Hamilton, Vettel & Ricciardo

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The Briton currently sits 37 points clear of his teammate Lewis Hamilton. With Russell producing more consistent performances this year, it’s only a matter of time before he takes his win. 

 

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Vaibhav Aatreya

137 articles

Vaibhav Aatreya is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. His ever-growing passion for the sport, combined with his willingness to learn the inside workings of Formula 1, led him to pursue his graduation in Mechanical Engineering. Having been following the world of motorsports for many years now, Vaibhav loves to pen down his thoughts, giving his take on the ongoings in the sport.

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