Toto Wolff: Mercedes not pushing for ‘miracle update’ in approach to W15 improvements

Michelle Foster
Lewis Hamilton puts in the laps at the Imola circuit

Lewis Hamilton was Mercedes' best-placed diver in P6

Updating the W15 over two weekends, Toto Wolff says Mercedes are not chasing “miracles” but rather “incremental gains” with the team having found a clear direction forward.

Formula 1’s development war is in full swing with every one of the ten teams updating their cars either in Miami or Imola, or like Mercedes, a few new parts at both races.

‘We are on a trajectory where we’re making the car better’

Additional reporting by Thomas Maher

It’s yielded, the drivers say, a notable improvement.

While George Russell declared his W15 at Imola was the “best” it has been all season, Lewis Hamilton said they’d taken “small steps” forward although they were still “lacking two or three-tenths”.

And small steps are exactly what Wolff and Mercedes are chasing.

“What we are seeing now on the car is that those incremental gains that we’re bringing, rather than a miracle update, are getting the car a better balance window and making the car have more performance,” the team principal told the media including

“It is a thing where you gain a tenth or a tenth-and-a-half but at the same time, the other teams are making progress.

“We are on a trajectory where we’re making the car better, and we can see that. It’s never like a share price going up, we’re doing it so as long as the direction is correct, I feel more confident now.”

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‘Where we are now this direction is correct’

Having contended with a W15 that bounced between being good in high-speed corners and then swapping to being good in the low-speed ones in the early rounds, the Austrian says the team now has a “clear” direction to create a more balanced car.

“I think we never had such clear indications like we’ve had in the last few races where we really saw that the car was either going fast in the high speed or in the low speed, but never both of them together,” he said.

“That’s something that we are able now to slowly dial out.”

All in all it meant a much better result for Hamilton and Russell at Imola than two years ago when they failed to score a single point. This Sunday they were sixth and seventh at the chequered flag.

“If we look at two years ago it was horrendous how Imola went for us,” he said.

“I’m not particularly proud and happy of the time from back in the day to today, we could have done things differently and better and spotted things earlier and optimised in the organisation. We didn’t.

“So where we are now this direction is correct.”

Mercedes, sitting P4 in the Constructors’ Championship, are 189 points behind leaders Red Bull.

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