Wolff: Many reasons for poor starts


Following an investigation into Mercedes' recent spate of poor starts, Toto Wolff has revealed that no "one single factor" is responsible.

Although Mercedes have been the team to beat in recent months, the Brackley squad has come under pressure of late most notably because of bad starts.

Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg were swamped off the line by Williams at the British Grand Prix while a race later it was Ferrari who got the jump on them.

A "very concerned" Wolff launched an investigation into the matter with the motorsport boss now revealing that no one single factor was to blame.

"We've conducted that analysis and there is not one single factor you could name and say is the reason why our starts did not go so well," he told Autosport.

"We've seen many various reasons, plus circumstances, why the starts went wrong, and there is no clear pattern. It's just the starts weren't great.

"In Hungary you could see the whole right side of the grid did not move forward at the start, whereas Vettel and Raikkonen, in P3 and P5, made great starts, so that was maybe circumstance.

"Another influence was the aborted start which made us overheat Lewis' clutch, and therefore his start performance.

"I could name you many other reasons why we didn't have the starts we expected, so we need to get on top of those problems."

This weekend at Spa, Mercedes and their rival teams will all have to deal with new start procedures.

In a bid to make the racing more exciting, the FIA has limited the pitwall's influence on starts, instead making the drivers "solely responsible" for getting off the line.

And that, Wolff says, brings with it its own "variables".

He added: "Clearly there will be more variables in the whole starting procedure now.

"We've seen the rules from the FIA, and there is definitely going to be more variability in the race starts.

"I'd rather have more variability because the driver doesn't get it 100 per cent right, rather than the software or an engineer not calibrating it 100 per cent the right way.

"So that's the right way forward, the way it should be, the way it was in the past.

"We are making a tiny step backwards technology wise for the sake of the entertainment and variability, but I am carefully optimistic it is going to add to the show."