Formula 1

Mercedes’ Toto Wolff: “We hope we can maintain the momentum”

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Credit: LAT Images

Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team CEO and Team Principal Toto Wolff was elated that Lewis Hamilton was able to match Michael Schumacher’s ninety-one race wins record.

Although that’s a massive positive for the team, things couldn’t have gone worse for Valtteri Bottas. Starting on pole position, the race looked his to win however his car came into a power issue and he was slowly falling down the pack. Eventually, the team had to retire his car.

“Seeing Lewis cross the line in Germany and take his 91st victory was a very special moment,” said Wolff. “Valtteri’s race, however, could not have gone much worse, going from pole position to a DNF and a significant points loss for him in the Drivers’ Championship.

It was undoubtedly a tough blow at this stage of the season. We have identified a failed electrical component in the Control Electronics as the cause of the problem and the evidence suggests that swift action in retiring the car prevented mechanical damage to his Power Unit.”
 
Wolff believes that Bottas will bounce back after his retirement from the previous race at the Portuguese Grand Prix this weekend. Portimão is the third track so far this year to added to the calendar after the cancellation of multiple races due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Going into a race weekend with a new track has the sense of the unknown but the team has prepared for that going into the upcoming races.

“A DNF is always tough for a driver, but one of Valtteri’s biggest strengths is his resilience and his ability to bounce back, so I’m sure he’ll be eager to hit the track in Portugal,” said Wolff. “Portimão is the second completely new circuit of the season, which adds some variability to the potential performance picture.

We had an exciting race at Mugello, the first new venue this year, and since then we have focused on preparing in the best way possible for the other new circuits and maximising the rate of learning when we go to a new track – something that will be especially important during the two-day weekend in Imola next week. 
 
“The car’s performance was good in the last few events both in Qualifying and in the race and we hope that we can maintain the momentum.”

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