Mercedes and their drivers hail positive Monaco weekend

Mercedes and their drivers hail positive Monaco weekend

Mercedes and their drivers hail positive Monaco weekend

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff as well as drivers Lewis Hamilton and George Russell, hailed the positive Monaco Grand Prix Formula 1 weekend.

Such is the current state of affairs at Mercedes that a race, where Russell and Hamilton qualified and finished fifth and seventh respectively, is considered positive, after the team brought the second part of a car upgrade that started in Miami.

Russell went even further saying that his race “was the best race” of the season after managing to fend off the attacks of Max Verstappen on fresher tyres towards the end of the 78-lap procession.

In Mercedes’ team report, Russell added: “We had good pace and were able to show that near the end, despite being on 70-lap old Medium tyres.

“We were closing on the top four at the end and only finished a handful of seconds off P1. There are plenty of positives to take from the weekend as a whole.

“We spent a lot of time this morning [Sunday morning] going through all the strategy options,” he revealed. “When we lined up on the grid, and everyone ahead was on the Medium compound, I was very happy. That looked even better when Carlos (Sainz) stopped on the opening lap.

“The red flag came out though and made our lives more difficult! I spent the first 30 laps taking it easy and in the end, I was able to keep the tyres in a good place and get to the end.

“Max (Verstappen) put me under a bit of pressure at the end but it was all pretty controlled,” Russell concluded.

Hamilton: The race was non-eventful

Indeed as Russell mentioned, his team was on the radio all the time urging him to slow down and save his tyres to go all the way.

That was the case up and down the grid with only a few drivers pitting later in the race, but that did not spice up the show, Hamilton commented: “The race today [Sunday] was non-eventful.

“Everyone was managing their pace after the red flag and ultimately, whatever tyre you were on, you could make it to the end. That took away our options of making forward progress which was frustrating,” he lamented.

As for Mercedes’ form, the seven-time F1 Champion added: “There have been plenty of encouraging signs from our performance this weekend.

“The team has worked so hard to bring updates to the car and we’ve got more to come across the next few races. We have taken a step forward with the car and, if we can continue to make a few more, then we can hopefully get ourselves into the fight with the three teams ahead of us,” he explained.

Wolff: We were much closer than we have been in Qualifying

Mercedes Team Principal Toto Wolff summed up his team’s weekend in Monaco, he said: “Overall, we’ve had a positive weekend.

“We were much closer than we have been in Qualifying so far this year and showed good pace throughout the race. That was despite the first lap red flag which took away many of our strategy options.

“We opted to switch to the Medium compound tyres under that red flag and both George and Lewis did a good job to manage them throughout. Lewis didn’t need to make a stop, but we were able to box him and secure the point for fastest lap,” the Austrian explained.

“The trajectory is going in the right direction,” Wolff insisted. “We’ve understood where we need to improve the balance car and we’re bringing updates to enhance that.

“We know there will be ups and downs depending on the circuits we go to but overall, I am happy with the development direction. Let’s see how we perform in Canada,” he concluded.

Mercedes leave Monaco still fourth in the 2024 F1 Constructors’ Championship, 88 points behind McLaren in third.

Russell is seventh in the Drivers’ Standings, 12 points ahead of Hamilton in eighth.