Toto Wolff has told his team to set realistic expectations despite an improved performance in Canada as “there is still a mountain to climb.”
The Mercedes car showed glimpses of the performances its predecessors would regularly put in last time out in Montreal as Lewis Hamilton finished on the podium for just the second time this season while George Russell was one place back in P4.
But this result did come with the caveat that Charles Leclerc started from the back of the grid after taking a new power unit and Red Bull’s Sergio Perez DNFed with a gearbox issue.
Looking ahead to Silverstone, which is a home race for both Mercedes drivers, Wolff warned that there was “still a mountain to climb” in terms of producing consistently quick performances.
“Canada was our fifth podium of the season, and we were happy to collect solid points,” Wolff said. “While we can be pleased with the flashes of speed that the W13 showed, there’s still a mountain to climb.
“A lot of work is needed to get to the front, but we have a clearer direction now. We’re focused on finding more and more performance as the season progresses.”
Not only is it a home race for the drivers but also for the team itself with their Brackley and Brixworth bases not far away from the circuit. Wolff said this gives team members a chance to see their work up close.
Torquing Point: Mercedes looking to build on Canada form
After a podium finish last time out in Canada, Mercedes will be hoping to keep that momentum heading into the British Grand Prix weekend.
“Silverstone is next, and it’s always a highlight of the year. The fans are so passionate and knowledgeable. It’s also our local event, with Brackley and Brixworth close by.
“Our team members will be trackside on Friday watching from the stands and seeing the results of their hard work in action, which is incredibly exciting!”
While a title challenge looks an increasingly unlikely prospect, the aim for Mercedes and Wolff is to close the gap to themselves and Red Bull and Ferrari as much as possible. Wolff said the two frontrunners have a “considerable advantage” but they were hoping “to take another step forward” this weekend.
“We know the top two teams have a considerable advantage. Our challenge is to close that gap. Silverstone has been good to us in the past; we have some improvements coming; and it’s a smoother track. We’re aiming to take another step forward.”
Mercedes are currently third in the Constructors’ Championship, 40 points behind Ferrari while Russell is fourth and Hamilton sixth in the Drivers’ Standings.