Mercedes still unsure about 2020 F1 car's form in hotter conditions

Mercedes Formula 1 technical director James Allison has cautioned that there are still concerns in the camp about racing in hotter temperatures with the W11

Mercedes still unsure about 2020 F1 car's form in hotter conditions

The Styrian and Hungarian Grand Prix weekends were both cooler than expected, and Allison says the team doesn't know if its tyre management will be as effective when the track temperature goes up.

Helped by the DAS (dual-axis steering) system the Mercedes W11 has proved very effective on its tyres thus far, with Valtteri Bottas and Lewis Hamilton winning all races so far.

"I'd note that we've had two quite cool tracks," said Allison.

"So far it was warmish in the first race of the year. But that was also the race where we were least convincing.

"So we would like to find out just how swift we can be when the track is roasting hot, and whether or not we can still show the sort of tyre management and pace under those conditions that we've been lucky enough to show in the opening races of the year."

Allison warned that reliability issues still hang over the team, despite a 100% finishing record.

He also noted that the decision to switch to development to the 2022 car will also play a role in how the form book looks until the end of 2021.

"I think anyone who had sat with us through the first weekend of the year wouldn't have entertained the idea of a Mercedes procession at that stage," he added.

"They would have seen us all desperately worried about the car, and its ability to finish a single race.

"Every car on the grid has a sword of Damocles hanging over it pretty much every lap, because they are all experimental vehicles with any number of ways that they can catch you out, or actually, you disappoint yourself for not having seen it coming.

"We're only too well aware of the billion frailties that are there, even in a product that is pretty strong, like our car and driver combo that we've got this year.

"I think too that everyone will have a different view about how long to develop for, we're heading into some fairly big rule changes, both technically and financially.

"And what you decide to do in this year will definitely set the tone for what comes the year after.

"And precisely what decisions we make internally will affect our fate in the second half of this championship, and maybe others will decide differently."

shares
comments
F1 Spanish GP unaffected by new COVID restrictions in Catalonia
Previous article

F1 Spanish GP unaffected by new COVID restrictions in Catalonia

Next article

Ribbs: F1 "lightyears ahead" of US motorsport in improving diversity

Ribbs: F1 "lightyears ahead" of US motorsport in improving diversity
Load comments
Why newly-retired Raikkonen won't miss F1 Plus

Why newly-retired Raikkonen won't miss F1

After 349 grand prix starts, 46 fastest laps, 21 wins and one world championship, Kimi Raikkonen has finally called time on his F1 career. In an exclusive interview with Autosport on the eve of his final race, he explains his loathing of paddock politics and reflects on how motorsport has changed over the past two decades

Unpacking the technical changes behind F1 2022's rules shakeup Plus

Unpacking the technical changes behind F1 2022's rules shakeup

Formula 1 cars will look very different this year as the long-awaited fresh rules finally arrive with the stated aim of improving its quality of racing. Autosport breaks down what the return of 'ground effect' aerodynamics - and a flurry of other changes besides - means for the teams, and what fans can expect

Formula 1
Jan 21, 2022
Why new era F1 is still dogged by its old world problems Plus

Why new era F1 is still dogged by its old world problems

OPINION: The 2022 Formula 1 season is just weeks away from getting underway. But instead of focusing on what is to come, the attention still remains on what has been – not least the Abu Dhabi title decider controversy. That, plus other key talking points, must be resolved to allow the series to warmly welcome in its new era

Formula 1
Jan 20, 2022
The Schumacher trait that will give Haas hope in F1 2022 Plus

The Schumacher trait that will give Haas hope in F1 2022

Mick Schumacher’s knack of improving during his second season in a championship was a trademark of his junior formula career, so his progress during his rookie Formula 1 campaign with Haas was encouraging. His target now will be to turn that improvement into results as the team hopes to reap the rewards of sacrificing development in 2021

Formula 1
Jan 19, 2022
The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push Plus

The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push

As the driver of Formula 1’s medical car, Alan van der Merwe’s job is to wait – and hope his skills aren’t needed. JAMES NEWBOLD hears from F1’s lesser-known stalwarts

Formula 1
Jan 15, 2022
When BMW added F1 'rocket fuel' to ignite Brabham's 1983 title push Plus

When BMW added F1 'rocket fuel' to ignite Brabham's 1983 title push

There was an ace up the sleeve during the 1983 F1 title-winning season of Nelson Piquet and Brabham. It made a frontrunning car invincible for the last three races to see off Renault's Alain Prost and secure the combination's second world title in three years

Formula 1
Jan 13, 2022
How “abysmal” reliability blunted Brabham’s first winner Plus

How “abysmal” reliability blunted Brabham’s first winner

Brabham’s first world championship race-winning car was held back by unreliable Climax engines – or so its creators believed, as STUART CODLING explains

Formula 1
Jan 10, 2022
The steps Norris took to reach a new level in F1 2021 Plus

The steps Norris took to reach a new level in F1 2021

Lando Norris came of age as a grand prix driver in 2021. McLaren’s young ace is no longer an apprentice or a quietly capable number two – he’s proved himself a potential winner in the top flight and, as STUART CODLING finds out, he’s ready to stake his claim to greatness…

Formula 1
Jan 9, 2022