Mercedes reveal F1 2023 testing plans for Lewis Hamilton and George Russell

Sam Cooper
Mercedes W14 shaken down at Silverstone. February 2023

All-black Mercedes W14 shaken down at Silverstone. February 2023

Mercedes have unveiled their testing plans for the Bahrain runout with both drivers in action on all three days.

The official pre-season testing event gets underway on Thursday as teams take to the Bahrain International Circuit for three days of practice ahead of the season start the following weekend.

As such, teams have begun to reveal how the three-day running time will be split up between their drivers and Mercedes have become the latest to do so.

In contrast to Red Bull who are giving both Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez a full day each, Mercedes have opted to split all three days so that both drivers will be in the W14 every day.

George Russell will have the honour of being the first one to drive the W14 in an official F1 session as he takes to the wheel on Thursday morning while his team-mate Lewis Hamilton will pick up the reins for the afternoon sessions.

That order is reversed for the Friday with Hamilton taking the morning session and Russell driving in the afternoon.

Then on Saturday, the final day of testing, Russell is in the car first before Hamilton closes out of the running.

The whole Mercedes team will be hoping the W14 causes far fewer problems than its predecessor the W13 with the first signs of trouble coming during testing last year.

Hamilton has been looking back at the W13 and while it was undoubtedly the worst car of his Mercedes career, he has highlighted two elements he hoped would be carried across to the 2023 car.

“The only thing that we would want to keep would be that our long run pace was very strong last year,” Hamilton told media including PlanetF1.com.

“I think that was our race pace was always stronger, so I would say that’s probably the only element that we really want to carry on into this season – and also reliability.

“So those two, those two are the things I think that we definitely want to hold on to. But all the other stuff, we want to really reinvent, redesign and hopefully [we will] see a more efficient car.”