‘Back in the game’ – Toto Wolff sees Mercedes’ ‘several steps forward’ confirmed in Spain

Henry Valantine
Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton sprays champagne on the podium

Lewis Hamilton scored his first podium of the season in Spain.

Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff said “it feels good to be back in the game” after seeing the team’s pace “confirmed” at the Spanish Grand Prix.

Lewis Hamilton earned his first Grand Prix podium in 13 races in Barcelona and George Russell followed him home in fourth place, reversing the same result from last time out in Canada as Mercedes’ recent improvements have appeared to have been backed up.

Toto Wolff: Mercedes appear ‘back in the game’ with recent improvements

Russell had led in the early stages after a daring move around the outside of both Lando Norris and Max Verstappen at the start, while Hamilton earned plaudits from his team boss for his overtake on Carlos Sainz after the first round of pit stops, having been undercut by the Ferrari driver initially.

Having made continual improvements to the W15 of late that technical director James Allison explained was partly a result of a ‘how could we been so dumb?’ moment rather than a ‘eureka’ moment from the team – changing their approach to sort an underlying issue that had previously “bedevilled” their car.

With the W15 now very much on an upward trajectory relative to their rivals, Wolff explained that, while Mercedes are not quite on the level of the top teams just yet, they are heading in the right direction – with this latest positive result a sign of their progress.

“We can take a lot of positives away from today,” Wolff said after the race.

“We have taken several steps forward in the previous few races and it is good to see these confirmed here in Spain.

Catch up with what happened at the Spanish Grand Prix

👉 Spanish GP: Max Verstappen withstands Lando Norris charge as Lewis Hamilton ends long podium drought

👉 2024 Spanish Grand Prix (Barcelona) – race results and latest F1 standings

“We are not quite there yet, and we have to more to do to catch those ahead.

“Nevertheless, we are on a positive development trajectory, and it feels good to be back in the game.

“It was also fantastic to pull off two of the best overtakes I’ve seen in a long time.

“George made a mega start and braked late to take the lead. Lewis’s overtake on Sainz meanwhile was great racing and an important moment for his race.

“It’s been a while since we’ve been able to enjoy a Grand Prix podium with Lewis, so it was fantastic to see him up there.

“We’re now looking forward to the next two races in the triple-header and building on the momentum we are establishing.”

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