Martin Brundle: Mercedes has to unlock an “excellent” car, not wait for the change of rules to solve the problem

Lewis Hamilton suffered from intense back pain during the Azerbaijani GP, while George Russell believes there should be “broader conversations” about porpoises and rebounds; despite the problems, Mercedes picked up points in Baku, with Russell finishing third and Hamilton fourth

Last updated: 13/06/22 23:37

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Martin Brundle is surprised that Mercedes is struggling to unlock the potential of their car and that they continue to have problems

Martin Brundle is surprised that Mercedes is struggling to unlock the potential of their car and that they continue to have problems

Martin Brundle says he is surprised that Mercedes cannot unlock the potential of their “excellent” car and sees little chance of rival teams voting to change the rules in their favor.

Since the introduction of new regulations at the start of the 2022 Formula 1 season, the new Mercedes W13 has been particularly affected by porpoise and rebound problems.

In Azerbaijan, Lewis Hamilton said the race was the most “painful” of his career and that only adrenaline helped him reach the checkered flag, while team-mate George Russell believes there should be more conversations. broad on addressing issues throughout sport.

“The teams that have solved the problem are clearly saying it is a Mercedes problem and not a Formula 1 problem,” said Brundle. Sky Sports News.

“There is no doubt, it seems particularly uncomfortable.

Check out Hamilton's driving experience on the Baku City circuit and the problems he is having

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Check out Hamilton’s driving experience on the Baku City circuit and the problems he is having

Check out Hamilton’s driving experience on the Baku City circuit and the problems he is having

“Of course, [Mercedes] they can fix it by jacking up the car but then they lose a huge amount of performance.

“So, they need to have the car low, stiff on the suspension and stiff on the sidewall of the new tires as well, and they had to sacrifice comfort for performance.

“What’s surprising, really, is that Mercedes can’t understand what looks like, in reality, a pretty excellent car, if only they could unlock it.”

Red Bull leads both the Drivers ‘and Constructors’ Championships and team principal Christian Horner said he would not be willing to vote for a regulation change.

He argued: “If it was something that concerned everyone, then yes, [the regulations should change] for safety reasons, but you can see that some cars are absolutely fine and others are struggling.

“Therefore, I think the emphasis is on the team to solve the problem instead of changing the regulations. It’s something they’re struggling with, it’s not something our riders complain about.

“I think it would be unfair if there was a change just because they missed the target.”

Watch the highlights of the Azerbaijani GP from the Baku Street Circuit

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Watch the highlights of the Azerbaijani GP from the Baku Street Circuit

Watch the highlights of the Azerbaijani GP from the Baku Street Circuit

This weekend it was reported that the teams had voted against a proposal to reduce porpoise before the season starts – and Brundle sees little chance of the teams changing the rules now.

“Generally, we had porpoises in the 1980s. When you have these ground effect cars, it’s always been a problem. It’s still in sports car racing; I was in Les Mans and in the prototypes there they have porpoise and ground effect issues in terms of rebound, it needs to be managed.

Asking other teams to change the rules to help Mercedes is a bit like asking a turkey to vote for Christmas.

“I’m not underestimating what George Russell and Lewis Hamilton are going through, because it looks particularly painful.

“And the Ferrari drivers at the crucial breaking points that seem difficult to me, I don’t know how they manage to enter the corners, frankly.”

Check out Hamilton's driving experience on the Baku City circuit and the problems he is having

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Check out Hamilton’s driving experience on the Baku City circuit and the problems he is having

Check out Hamilton’s driving experience on the Baku City circuit and the problems he is having

After free practice sessions and productive qualifying sessions in Azerbaijan, Ferrari experienced a nightmarish racing day with Carlos Sainz and Charles Leclerc forced to retire due to engine failures.

Leclerc, who led the championship after five races, has now dropped to third in the standings behind both Red Bull drivers and Brundle signals that Ferrari’s variety of reliability issues will derail their drivers’ title hopes.

“We are in the middle of a 22-race season, the races are coming to us inexorably. If you have a big problem, go and solve it, but there are various gremlins that Ferrari is having.

“Charles Leclerc must be beside himself. He could have had four glorious wins; he’s putting the car in pole position, driving beautifully and then that sort of thing. [engine failure] too much is happening to him.

Mattia Binotto talks about Ferrari's demanding race day in Baku and looks to the rest of the season

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Mattia Binotto talks about Ferrari’s demanding race day in Baku and looks to the rest of the season

Mattia Binotto talks about Ferrari’s demanding race day in Baku and looks to the rest of the season

“Reliability is now costing him a lot, a chance to become world champion. The strategy has cost him a chance for a glorious victory in his hometown in Monaco.

“He loves Ferrari and Ferrari loves him, in a way that the last time I saw something like this was between Michael Schumacher and the Ferrari team.

“There’s a lot of love to burn there, but right now Leclerc must be feeling as hurt as Lewis’s back.”

There is little time for the work of the team engineers or for the recovery of the drivers, as the Formula 1 season continues this weekend with the Canadian GP.

The first free practice for the Canadian GP in Montreal will take place on Friday with full coverage of the weekend, live Sky Sport F1. Coverage of the Canadian GP begins at 5:30 PM BST on Sunday night with the lights out at 7:00 PM.

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