Toto Wolff watched his Mercedes-AMG Motorsport team claim their fifth consecutive one-two finish in the Spanish Grand Prix on Sunday, and he is proud to see the rewards of everyone pushing hard to be the benchmark team in Formula 1.
Lewis Hamilton jumped into the lead at the start ahead of Valtteri Bottas, and despite first corner pressure from Scuderia Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel, it turned out to be a relatively straightforward result for the team, with Hamilton claiming his third win of 2019 by just over four seconds.
“We are trying to push the benchmark every single year and seeing this all come together after the struggles we had in winter testing is fantastic for the team,” said Wolff.
“We saw a strong Lewis today and he was quick from the very beginning. Valtteri lost the lead at the start; he reported something strange with his clutch at the start and we need to investigate this. After the first corner it was a relatively straightforward race.”
After the race, Dr. Dieter Zetsche accepted the Constructors’ trophy on the podium as it was the Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG & Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars final race weekend before retiring.
Wolff lauded the outgoing Zetsche, saying Mercedes would not be the team they are today without him as he laid the foundation for the success by pushing for the team to return to the sport.
“This was Dr. Zetsche’s last race as CEO of Daimler,” said Wolff. “Not many CEOs have empowered a group of people like he has done; he has trusted us to represent this fantastic brand and we do it with great pride.
“Dieter went through a storm in the first few years when we returned to the sport, but he stuck with F1. It was great to see him up there on the podium today, he completely deserves it as he laid the foundation for all of this.”
The team will go for six in a row next time out in Monaco, but Wolff is expecting a much bigger challenge to present itself, and he says everyone will be working flat out to prepare for the legendary street circuit.
“We know the next race will be a tremendous challenge for us,” said Wolff. “We need to take this season one step at a time and everybody is working flat-out ahead of Monaco.”