Can Mercedes win the 2013 F1 Constructors Title?

July 6, 2013 4:56 pm0 comments by:

Mercedes F1 LogoMercedes did not have a quick car throughout the 2012 F1 season. They struggled to have both cars qualify in the top ten. It was difficult for the cars to finish the race in the podium and earn high points. In the first 9 races of the 2012 Grand prix, both drivers finished twice in the points standings. They experienced car failures and retirement in majority of the Grand Prix. The team admitted during the season, that most of focus had been shifted to building a quick 2013 F1 season car.

In November 2012, Lewis Hamilton was recruited to the driver line up. He replaced Michael Schumacher, who announced his retirement during the season and left Mercedes Formula 1 team
In January 2013, Wolff joined the team from Williams, buying a stake in the Mercedes Formula One team and taking over the responsibilities previously held by Norbert Haug. Having invested in the team, he said failure is not an option.
According to the Formula one’s official website, he said “I am not afraid to make changes to ensure the Formula 1 team is successful.”If it is not going in the direction I want, I will implement the structure that I think will work,”

Mercedes had a competitive car at the beginning of 2013 F1 season. They have young experienced drivers, who have started well .The overall result after 9 races were better compared to last season.

This weekend, F1 is at Nurburgring, Germany for the 9th Grand Prix of the season. Mercedes sits in second place in the Constructors Table. For the drivers, Lewis Hamilton is in 4th position, with Nico Rosberg two places behind in 6th position. They team have won 2 races at Monaco and Silverstone GP. The early changes to management and driver set up proving good moves. Mercedes Engineers are challenged to succeed by Lewis’s determination to win another F1 title. Nico Rosberg is motivated to win more Grand Prix.

Both drivers have finished in the top ten places, apart from the Spanish Grand prix.
Nico Rosberg has won 2 races or finished in the point’s standings. Lewis Hamilton has not won a race so far but has been on the podium finish on two occasions.

They have struggled in destinations with high tyre wear. However, at the last race held in Silverstone Britain, renowned for high speed corners and tyre degradation. Nico won and Lewis finished 4th despite concerns from the team, about tyre wear. Based on this outcome, you will expect the consistency will continue at Nurburgring, with low tyre degradation. This should help Mercedes on the race day, as they continue to work on any car problems.

The competitors should be getting worried as Mercedes continue to improve with each GP race. At Silverstone, Lewis Hamilton qualified on the top and kept his position. This was with Sebastian Vettel in the quick Red Bull car in second position, until the tyre incident. His rear tyre got ripped apart and needed replacement. In the last 6 laps of the race, Mark Webber was chasing Nico Rosberg. The difference in lap times was insignificant as Mercedes car was matching the Red bull car.

There will be further proof of the title credentials of the Mercedes, if they continue to transfer the quick qualifying pace to actual races. The problem might rise with the modification of the tyre and recent addition to the management structure

The 2013 tyre set up has been changed for safety reasons. It has been modified for the German Grand Prix on 5-7 July 2013 due to time constraints. Then, it will be replaced to the 2012 tyre model for the following race( Hungarian Grand Prix) scheduled for 25th to 27th July 2013. This is after the tyre testing on 17th July 2013, following incidents at the British Grand Prix.

The tyre change might affect Mercedes, who will not have envisaged sudden change in the trye, this season. Especially, as Pirelli were lauded last season for improving the entertainment factor. It also requires safety concerns and approval from all teams. Some of the teams were having better results with the new tyre design and would be against change

The future of the Team Principal Ross Brawn may affect the team performance. Last month, Paddy Lowe, former Mclaren Technical Director was recruited to join the team. The Team believed having power vested to one person in F1 team is outdated. New management recruit Paddy Lowe, has said there is no animosity with Ross Brawn. However, it is rumored Paddy Lowe will replace him next season.

Nevertheless, it is becoming difficult for rivals to ignore Mercedes Constructors Team, as title contenders. The 2 drivers continue to qualify on top in most of the qualifying races and finishing in the top 5 places. This helps the team to keep their current second place in the constructor’s standings.

Furthermore, the ongoing argument about lack of a quick race pace is falling on deaf hears. The 2 drivers of Mercedes continue to finish the races tomorrow’s German Grand Prix with strong points. This will prove the team has a competitive car to finish in top 3 Constructors Table. They might even challenge Red Bull and Ferrari for the top.
Lewis Hamilton is on  pole position in German Qualifying race.

Obioma Aguocha
Self Publisher:The Guide to being the Best (Paperback) 2007 & Sporting Success Simplified (E-book) 2012

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