Mercedes “losing a little bit” with engine derating issue at Bahrain GP

Mercedes has revealed that its deficit to Red Bull at the Bahrain Grand Prix is not being helped by engine derating issues around the Sakhir track.

Mercedes “losing a little bit” with engine derating issue at Bahrain GP

While the team is well aware that its chassis is not performing as it would like against its main Formula 1 rival, it is also facing headaches in getting on top of its energy recovery systems for the season opener.

Team boss Toto Wolff reckoned that Mercedes was losing out to Honda in terms of its derating – which is when the engine boost that comes from its energy recovery systems runs out at the end of the straights.

Speaking about where Mercedes was losing time to Red Bull, Wolff said: “I think we're losing on the high speed [corners]. We can clearly see there's a deficit.

“We're losing a little bit on the engine side in terms of derate. We are not yet in a happy place with our energy recovery, but it's not one thing we point to where we can say this is the big gap.”

Toto Wolff, Team Principal and CEO, Mercedes AMG, and James Allison, Technical Director, Mercedes AMG

Toto Wolff, Team Principal and CEO, Mercedes AMG, and James Allison, Technical Director, Mercedes AMG

Photo by: Steve Etherington / Motorsport Images

The strong form of both Red Bull and AlphaTauri in Bahrain this weekend indicates that its engine supplier Honda has made good gains with its new 2021 power unit.

Wolff said he was confident, however, that Mercedes would get on top of its power unit issues.

“Honda has done a great job,” he said. “They delivered the power unit which is extremely competitive. Look at where AlphaTauri is. And we just have to take it as sportsmen.

“You just have to say when they've done a really good job, full stop. There's just no one-off solution then to recover. And I believe that on the derates that you see, it is something that we have to get on top of. That is not easy, but we'll get there.”

Asked if was surprised that Honda had put such an effort in to a new engine for its final season in F1, Wolff said: “Am I surprised? No I'm actually not at all surprised.

“I think Honda is a very proud company and I was convinced that they would give all the power to have a great power unit in the final year as a works team.

“I think they left no stone unturned, and no resource unutilised to finish the job properly. So it's good motivation for us and I'm happy for them.”

shares
comments

Related video

New aero regulations cost low-rake cars 1s per lap - Aston Martin

Previous article

New aero regulations cost low-rake cars 1s per lap - Aston Martin

Next article

"Strange" feeling on medium tyres cost Tsunoda Q3 place in Bahrain

"Strange" feeling on medium tyres cost Tsunoda Q3 place in Bahrain
Load comments
How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum Plus

How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum

With two sprint races under its belt, Formula 1 must now consider its options for them going forward. While they've helped deliver exciting racing on Sundays, the sprints themselves have been somewhat lacking - creating yet another conundrum for F1 to solve...

Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season? Plus

Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season?

OPINION: With Valtteri Bottas already signed up for 2022, all eyes are on the race for the second seat at Alfa Romeo next year. Antonio Giovinazzi is the current incumbent, but faces a tough competition from appealing short and long-term prospects

Formula 1
Sep 15, 2021
The "forced break" that was key to Ricciardo's Monza excellence Plus

The "forced break" that was key to Ricciardo's Monza excellence

OPINION: Daniel Ricciardo has long been considered one of Formula 1’s elite drivers. But his struggles at McLaren since switching from Renault for 2021 have been painful to watch at times. Yet he’s recovered to banish those memories with a famous Monza win – built on a critically important foundation

Formula 1
Sep 14, 2021
How Verstappen is ruining his F1 title battle with Hamilton Plus

How Verstappen is ruining his F1 title battle with Hamilton

OPINION: The Italian GP clash between Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen followed a running theme in the 2021 Formula 1 title fight. Their close-quarters battles have often resulted in contact - and although Hamilton has shown a willingness to back off, Verstappen must learn to temper his aggression

Formula 1
Sep 14, 2021
Italian Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Italian Grand Prix Driver Ratings

Two drivers produced maximum-score performances as, for the second year in a row, Monza threw up an unpredictable result that left several others ruing what might have been

Formula 1
Sep 13, 2021
Why Ricciardo was set for Monza F1 triumph even without Verstappen/Hamilton crash Plus

Why Ricciardo was set for Monza F1 triumph even without Verstappen/Hamilton crash

The clash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton was the major flashpoint the 2021 Italian Grand Prix will be remembered for. Yet by this point, race leader Daniel Ricciardo had already done the hard work that would put him in position to end his and McLaren's lengthy win droughts, on a memorable afternoon in Monza

Formula 1
Sep 13, 2021
Why Italian GP success is on for McLaren even if Verstappen dominates Plus

Why Italian GP success is on for McLaren even if Verstappen dominates

For the second time in 2021, McLaren will line up for the start of a grand prix from the first row. It knows it has the chance of “glory” if things go well for Daniel Ricciardo and Lando Norris at the start of the 2021 Italian Grand Prix, but even if they just maintain their grid positions, signs from the rest of the Monza weekend suggest success is very possible for Formula 1’s other orange army

Formula 1
Sep 12, 2021
The F1 media favourite who lifted a broken Lotus Plus

The F1 media favourite who lifted a broken Lotus

Graham Hill was nearly 30 when he made his Formula 1 debut. NIGEL ROEBUCK examines the life of a gifted racer whose talismanic personality defined an era

Formula 1
Sep 11, 2021