Whilst the new Mercedes teams upgrades look like they have helped improve the car the team have admitted they were worried it could have gone horribly wrong.
So are Mercedes back?
The new Mercedes upgrades look to have solidified the team as the second fastest team on the grid but Toto Wolff and the team were cautious over their "rushed" upgrades. Mercedes admitted right after qualifying at the opening round in Bahrain that the car was not where it was meant to be and promised a much needed change to the car was coming. It was unheard of for a team to say their season was over before lights out at the first race had even happened with the Silver Arrows promising upgrades in Imola but those much needed upgrades would not come there due to the cancellation of the Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix after floods had hit the North Italy region.
Mercedes next chance to bring their new upgrades was the Monaco Grand Prix where all focus of the media was on them during Wednesday as the team unveiled that their car had sidepods, a redesigned floor and new front suspension. The W14 looked completely different since we last saw it at the Miami Grand Prix. The new upgrades are just the start of a resurgence for Mercedes who showed promising pace at the Spanish Grand Prix with both Lewis Hamilton and George Russell finishing on the podium behind Max Verstappen in his dominant Red Bull that seems unbeatable once again this season.
Both Hamilton and Russell seemed happy after their new found pace got them both to the podium but the upgrades did have the Mercedes team worried. When speaking to motorsport.com Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff said, “We just need to continue to grind away because it's not so much about how quick it is, it's about how good our understanding is. We've been rushing things over the last two months, and that worried us because it was a little bit circumventing the process. But so far it has paid off.”
The ultimate goal of Mercedes is for them to be back on top and these upgrades hopefully put them in the right direction to beating the very dominant Red Bull who has won the last grand prix by a staggering 20s plus gap between them and second place. However the teams new found form within its upgrades could be just the start of that fight back and in the next 12 months look to be back on the top step of the podium when 2024 brings them a new chasis and clean slate to properly start their fight back to the front.
Meanwhile Hamilton believes that the new updated Mercedes car still is not faster than the Aston Martin or Ferrari. The three constructors are currently locked in a close fight for second best in the constructors championship as every weekend goes on the three teams seem to be on equal pace or one slightly faster than the other. As the weekends go on Mercedes are looking to understand their car more and more so they know where to target for development to squeeze out every drop of performance possible.
The team itself is hoping to secure its driver line up for the 2024 season and beyond in the coming months too with Lewis Hamilton and Toto Wolff both stating it is just a matter of time before the seven time world champion signs his next contract. During the Monaco Grand Prix weekend it was rumoured that Hamilton could be headed to Ferrari which both parties later denied. Meanwhile George Russell is on a multi-year deal with no one outside of Mercedes knowing how long that contract is.