“While the Cats are Away”: Hill Suspects Red Bull are Deceiving Mercedes With 2022 F1 Plans

Published 06/15/2021, 4:10 AM EDT
Formula One F1 – Spanish Grand Prix – Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, Barcelona, Spain Red Bull’s Max Verstappen and Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton in action during the race REUTERS/Nacho Doce


With the new regulations coming in 2022, teams may look to spend their time and resources for next year’s championship. However, this means they might have to sacrifice this year’s championship to be ready for next year. Damon Hill, a former F1 driver feels that Red Bull will focus on 2021 as they are leading the title race, while rivals Mercedes will focus on 2022.

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The Milton-Keynes outfit are leading the race for the title for the first time, ever since Mercedes became the most dominating team on the grid. And with the Silver Arrows having their attention on 2022, the Raging Bull will see this as their opportunity to claim the title.

Hill expects Red Bull to seize this opportunity while Mercedes is distracted

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In an episode of the podcast, F1 Nation, Hill said, “It’s incredible looking at the constructor’s championship. There is this other team (Red Bull) leading the constructor’s championship, some Red Bull team.” Hill jokingly said. “It is such a long time since we have seen that. It makes you have a double-take.”

“You know when we talked about last time, and we talked about how I was worried that Mercedes have moved their resources on a little bit too soon. I wonder that’s why they were struggling a bit. They were focusing on the new regulations.”

SOCHI, RUSSIA: Valtteri Bottas of Finland driving the (77) Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team Mercedes W11 on track during the F1 Grand Prix of Russia at Sochi Autodrom in Sochi, Russia. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)

And I was perusing an old copy of Motorsport magazine, and I found this quote from James Allison (Technical director of Mercedes), where he said, the changes are so large, the car is so different, that we are going to have to spend a large part of our technical resources during the 2021 season, in order to make sure we are ready.”

Asked if Red Bull will do the same, Hill added, “I am not sure, that’s my point. I think Red Bull would like to slip in there. While the cats are away, mice are playing.” Hill implying that with the Silver Arrows having their attention on 2022, this Red Bull’s window to grab the title.

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How are the two rivals doing this season?

It is a known fact that Mercedes are arch-rivals with Red Bull. Both are having an intense fight this season, as the Brackley-based squad won three out of the six races, while their rivals won the other three.

As it stands, the Milton-Keynes-based outfit holds the lead in the constructor’s championship with 178 points to their name. While the Brackley-based outfit has 148 points to the name so far this season.

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Formula One F1 – Spanish Grand Prix – Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, Barcelona, Spain – May 9, 2021 Red Bull’s Max Verstappen leads Mercedes’Lewis Hamilton at the start of the race REUTERS/Albert Gea

The seventh round of the championship takes us to Paul Ricard for the French GP.  The Silver Arrows will be hoping to bounce back and bridge the 26 point gap to their rivals.

Do you think the Silver Arrows will find their winning Formula One once again and bring their A-Game to France? We will just have to wait and find out.

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Arpit Gomes

664 articles

Arpit Gomes is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. Currently pursuing his Journalism degree from Xavier’s Institute, he is a big fan of McLaren and their driver Lando Norris and Daniel Ricciardo. Arpit always looks forward to the paddock moving to Spa and drivers dealing with the exciting Eau Rouge corner as well the straight at Monza.

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