British driver George Russell is optimistic that Mercedes will perform well at this weekend’s Formula 1 Singapore Grand Prix on an urban track that is perhaps a little better suited to the W13 than the circuits it has visited previously.
In previous years, Mercedes has traditionally struggled at Singapore, namely with switching on Pirelli tyres and keeping the degredation down to a minimum, but unusually for this year, we could see the potential for Mercedes’s first win of 2022.
One of the biggest weaknesses of the Mercedes W13 this season has been the drag it generates on the straights, which has meant that both drivers have been crippled in terms of top speed compared to their rivals. This problem of excessive drag has been exacerbated in recent races at the fast tracks of Spa in Belgium and Monza in Italy.
But this weekend in Singapore, the urban Marina Bay track presents a different challenge for the teams with a series of 23 fairly slow corners, which should suit the characteristics of the Mercedes W13 of George Russell and Lewis Hamilton a little better.
Mercedes first win of 2022?
“We’ll be able to tell you after about three laps tomorrow [this Friday]. I think it’s going to be interesting, because at Zandvoort – probably our most competitive race of the season – Lewis and I knew after a few laps that it was going to be a good weekend for us,” said Russell on Thursday evening in Singapore.
“Here it’s a bit different. The track is bumpy and we haven’t driven on it for three years, so it’s going to be dirty and loose. You’re going to have to evolve with the circuit, and you can have a good Friday, but the track will be different on Saturday and different again on Sunday.”
“There have also always been safety cars here, so you’ll have to adapt the strategy accordingly, so it’s not a simple race. But I think it should be better than what we saw at Monza and Spa.”
Ahead of the Singapore Grand Prix, the Mercedes team is still looking for its first win of the season with only six races remaining.
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