The 2022 Mercedes-powered F1s took a hard hit at the start of the season, as the last six Bahrain-class drivers boarded a star-branded engine. Only Lewis Hamilton and George Russell were higher in the standings.
However, the Mercedes, Aston Martin, McLaren and Williams drivers refuse to blame the engine, as it seems that the Mercedes customer cars are not performing enough. Russell thinks the same for Mercedes F1.
“I think there is always room for improvement” said Russell. “But I believe the Williams, with a Mercedes rear engine, was the fastest car on the straights in Bahrain, or one of the fastest cars on the straights.”
“So I think there are, there are a number of reasons why we struggled. I think we had more wing downforce compared to the Red Bull and the Ferrari, and porpoises don’t help either.”
“Because we’re crashing into the ground, instead of skating on a surface. So we’ll have to wait and see, but I don’t think it’s just the power source.”
Lance Stroll agrees with Russell that the engine isn’t the only cause, and hopes to get some answers in Jeddah: “Yes, I think we will discover a lot more this weekend. Just because of the nature of this track. Yes, we will have a much better idea.”
Alex Albon, Williams driver, agrees with his two colleagues. According to him, his team’s delay is not only due to a lack of speed, but also problems with the chassis.
“I think what George said applies to us too” explains the Thai. “I mean, we have to focus on ourselves first, I think that’s really the number one priority.”
“We are clearly behind, but we are also behind in the corners. We will see what happens during the season, but for now we just have to look closely and see what we can do better.”
Lando Norris had a disastrous Bahrain Grand Prix with McLaren. According to him, the Mercedes F1 team is proof that the German powerplant can still work, as the two drivers have battled for the podium after two retirements.
“George and Mercedes are our main points of comparison from a Mercedes point of view, and they are very far from us” notes the British. “So before we start complaining about the engine or anything else, we need a much better car.”