Christian Horner fires Mercedes jab at Toto Wolff as W15 ‘sum does not add up’ – F1 news round-up

Jamie Woodhouse
Toto Wolff and Christian Horner side-by-side.

Toto Wolff and Christian Horner side-by-side.

Hot off the heels of the Chinese Grand Prix, we have a fresh batch of key Formula 1 talking points to send your way.

After Lewis Hamilton provided fresh hope, Mercedes were soon back to scratching their heads over the struggling W15 challenger, with Red Bull team principal Christian Horner unable to resist the opportunity to hurl a dig over the fence. All this and more, so let us dive into the action.

Christian Horner lands Mercedes ‘customer team’ dig

While Red Bull continues to blitz the competition as F1’s dominant force, Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff has not gone silent on his ambitions to lure away Red Bull’s prized asset Max Verstappen, much to the frustration of Horner.

And said frustration began to boil over as Horner addressed the media after a fresh Verstappen masterclass in China, Horner advising Wolff to focus on the bigger priority of addressing the fact that they are not currently the fastest team powered by a Mercedes engine.

Read more – Christian Horner fires ‘Mercedes behind their customers’ jab at Toto Wolff amidst Max speculation

‘Sum does not add up somewhere’ with the Mercedes W15

Mercedes’ latest creation has shown flashes of performance, a fresh one coming in China as Hamilton secured P2 on the Sprint grid and led the first-half of the mini race, but that performance and momentum evaporated on Grand Prix Sunday.

And Wolff admits Mercedes are lacking understanding on how to achieve the kind of success which Red Bull has in F1’s ground-effect era.

Read more – ‘The sum does not add up somewhere for us’ – Toto Wolff’s blunt Mercedes W15 assessment

Ted Kravitz renews ‘built for Max Verstappen’ debate

During his F1 paddock wander in China as part of his ‘Ted’s Notebook’ programme, Sky F1 pit-lane reporter Ted Kravitz spotted Red Bull driver Sergio Perez in conversation with senior advisor Helmut Marko, following his P3 finish in China.

Kravitz speculated that Marko may have been wanting an explanation for why Perez was not able to challenge McLaren’s Lando Norris for P2, but with his reasoning that the RB20 “is built around Max Verstappen”, Kravitz re-opened that can of worms when it comes to the respective performances of the Red Bull drivers.

Read more – Ted Kravitz renews ‘built for Max Verstappen’ debate with Sergio Perez off the pace in China

Aston Martin told to ‘sack’ Lance Stroll here and now

While the Chinese GP was a typically faultless display from Verstappen, one driver who did not have such a positive experience was Lance Stroll, who drew the ire of Daniel Ricciardo after smashing into the back of his RB and lifting it off the ground ahead of a Safety Car restart. Stroll would refuse to take responsibility.

And in the opinion of Danish racer turned F1 pundit Jason Watt, Aston Martin should be giving Stroll his marching orders “immediately”.

Read more – ‘Sack him immediately’ – Fresh Lance Stroll criticism emerges after Chinese GP controversy

Fernando Alonso threatens to skip Miami Sprint

The pressure has been building on Stroll over his struggles to contend with his Aston Martin team-mate, two-time World Champion Fernando Alonso, who also went through a frustrating ordeal in China as he received three super licence points after a collision with Carlos Sainz in the Sprint.

And with this race weekend format in use again next time out in Miami, Alonso questioned whether it is even worth him taking part in the Sprint?

Read more – Fernando Alonso threatens to skip Miami Sprint with ‘not worth it’ claim after penalty