Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff said that the newly crowned constructor’s champions must learn from their failure in qualifying for the Turkish Grand Prix.
The Silver Arrows of Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas could only qualify sixth and ninth, with the team unable to switch on their tyres in the wet and slippery conditions.
Saturday was the first time that Mercedes have not been on pole position this season and the Austrian insisted that they must adapt and improve in these situations going forward.
“I believe we haven’t lost a pole in wet conditions this year,” Wolff said.
“But the conditions were different in that it wasn’t only wet, but it was a brand new circuit that was slippery and cold ambient and track temperatures. We just weren’t able to switch the tyres on, and you can see that, if you’re just not in the right window, you’re just sliding all over the place, and the consequences are massive gaps between teams and cars.
“I think we have to learn from this. It was very different conditions than we have over the average of the season because of the temperatures, track and air, because of the rain and because of the resurfaced tarmac.”
Mercedes sealed the constructor’s championship at Imola in the last race, with Hamilton able to win the driver’s title this weekend, provided Bottas does not gain eight or more points on him on Sunday.
Lance Stroll starts on pole position after a brilliant performance in the tricky conditions, ahead of Max Verstappen in second, Sergio Perez in third, Alex Albon in fourth and Daniel Ricciardo in fifth.