Mercedes F1 started the triple header of Formula One by releasing their upgraded engine in France, labelled as spec 2.1. The engine upgrade allowed Mercedes to retain their supremacy, with Lewis Hamilton finishing on pole and later taking the victory as well, in order to retake the position at the top of the championship standings.
Now for the Austrian Grand Prix, Mercedes seems to have continued their good work by releasing fresh upgrades for the race. The upgrades are touted as one of the biggest ones released by Mercedes for the season. Among the changes to the W09 are the revised sidepods, including a new implementation of the controversial wing mirrors. There are changes to the rear as well, where Mercedes have taken inspiration from McLaren mimicking there design at the rear end of the car.
Lewis Hamilton was certain these upgrades will help the team maintain supremacy at a track where Mercedes are expected to dominate anyway.
“The development race is always tight,” Hamilton said.
“Up until now we’ve not really had a lot of development parts on the car. I’ve been aware that the guys have been working increasingly harder to try and make sure we bring quality rather than quantity.
“It’s great to see there are some new bits here this weekend and I’m excited to try them on track. It will undoubtedly help us in our battle to fight the other guys.”
The Red Bull ring is identified as a power hungry track and Mercedes have won all four editions of the race since the track has returned to calendar in 2014.
“Undoubtedly it doesn’t really make any difference coming into this weekend because it’s a new year where we are so much closer,” Hamilton said.
“It’s a short circuit and everything is going to be closer than ever before. Everyone has got some sort of upgrades. I anticipate it being one of the closest qualifying sessions that we’ve probably had this season.
“That’s my feeling, although I might be wrong. I hope I am and we qualify one-two with a better gap than that. But I also hope that it is close and it’s about those final tenths of a second.”