Toto Wolff has admitted the relentless schedule of the 2020 F1 season has become a “struggle”.
Three consecutive triple-headers, with only one weekend off between each, are forming what is expected to be the first half of the campaign which did not get under way until July because of the global health pandemic.
After that, eight more races are expected but they are set to be much more spread out, potentially going through until mid-December in Abu Dhabi when the final calendar – with 17 events anticipated – is confirmed.
This is clearly the most intense spell of racing F1 has ever experienced and Mercedes team principal Wolff admits that even for the World Champions, who are dominating the 2020 season, it is proving to be especially gruelling.
“Having said that, it’s not easy for anybody. But for the racing team it’s particularly difficult because you can’t go home – you need to stay out, you’re not seeing your family for in excess of three weeks and that has happened two times in a row now.
“For once, the senior management and the engineers that were able to commute back home (at Silverstone), there wasn’t a single day when they didn’t work.
“I can tell you Monday morning we were all in the office and that three race weekends in a row, it takes its toll. I feel it in myself that you start to struggle.”
“I think for the moment it’s fine,” said the Dutchman, who is second in the World Championship standings. “We had a long break before (the season began).
“I don’t see this happening, well, hopefully, next year, where you keep doing triple-headers. I think that’s a bit too much. If you can make sure that… two weekends in a row, I think that’s okay. Having a week’s break in between is fine.
“But of course we have to accept that at the moment, we need to get the races in. So we just try to do the best we can. I think we have three triple-headers in a row. That’s pretty much, I think, the limit.”