Paul and I discussed the comments made from Toto Wolff this weekend with regards to not upgrading their car for the balance of the 2021 season. It was a bit odd that a team as awesome as Mercedes would stop developing their car in the middle of a championship battle to focus solely on the 2022 car despite how critical that may be.
It wasn’t fooling Christian Horner at Red Bull either as he found the statement a bit off the mark of what one would expect. Both Paul and I thought it was odd and most likely a throw-away statement.
It now seems that it may not be completely on the mark as revealed by James Allison.
James Allison was on the F1 Nation Podcast and he said: “We have a reasonable number of things that are going to make our car faster in the coming races, and let’s hope they prove sufficient.”
Clearly you could see where that may not comport with what Mercedes boss Toto Wolff said this weekend in Austria but James said: “I don’t think those two things are at odds with each other. And I don’t think Toto has said precisely that.
“What Toto points out is that next year’s rules are a big and hairy affair, and that they demand a huge amount of our attention. So most of the focus of our factory has switched over to next year, the performance discovery for next year.
“But that doesn’t mean that there aren’t things still in the food-chain from prior to that focus switch. And furthermore, it isn’t all of the factory. And furthermore, we’re only one of two factories, there’s also the PU factory and there is a little bit more to come also from the PU.
“So there’s some more aerodynamic change in the offing. A little bit on the PU, we hope, on the delivery side, and just a few things that are not quite as tidy as we would wish, that we still have got the opportunity to put right while this season is still very much alive and hot.”
That would suggest that Paul and I were correct. They will upgrade the car with most of the focus on the 2022 season. Imagine a team the size of Mercedes only spending 20% of its resources to this year’s car…that’s larger than some team in total.