George Russell talks about how Mercedes started from zero again

George Russell Mercedes

Mercedes endured its worst season ever since the start of the turbo hybrid era in 2014 as George Russell managed to snatch the only win of the team.

The 2022 season was the one to forget for Mercedes. The Brackley-based squad came in the season with an innovative zero sidepods design. However, the design backfired for the team. The porpoising phenomenon seemed to affect the Mercedes challenger much more than the other cars. Soon it was clear that the W13 was nowhere near a title-challenging car – something Mercedes was used to now having won eight constructors’ titles in a row.

George Russell said in an interview after the 2022 season concluded:

“As Toto [Wolff] said, we spent months and months trying to solve porpoising.”

“To be honest, it probably cost us eight months because of all the development we did before the season.

“It kind of went back in the bin and we started from zero again.”

Even after a struggling start, Silver Arrows showcased an all-around development throughout the season. George Russell went on to secure his maiden win in the Brazilian GP as Mercedes moved closer to the leaders.

Russell added:

 “Our main focus is on Red Bull because they are the team to beat.

“It’s probably not a comparison that people draw often, but if you look at the start of the year, we were actually qualifying and finishing behind Haas and Alfa Romeo.

“At some races, Alfa Romeo was faster than us, like at Imola. Valtteri [Bottas] was chasing me down, back in P9.

“Haas was out-qualifying us, and obviously, they don’t have quite the development that we probably do.”

“Obviously, Ferrari and Red Bull probably develop at a similar rate to us but we closed that gap substantially, and that’s the exciting thing [for 2023].”

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