After winning 10 of the first 12 races of 2019, Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport will be aiming to come out of the summer break the same way they started the year.
“Summer shutdown was a welcome break after some very busy weeks in July and early August, but now we’re excited to go racing again,” Team Principal Toto Wolff said. “While the majority of our colleagues in Brackley had the chance to recharge their batteries for the second half of the season, other team members were carrying the baton over the past weeks. Our team members in Brixworth worked straight through the F1 summer break to improve the performance and reliability of our Power Unit; in Brackley, we used the relatively quiet days to do some work on our factory. It’s great to come back from the summer break knowing that part of the team was still pushing flat out and we are grateful to our colleagues who kept the ball rolling while we were out of office.”
Mercedes holds a 150-point lead atop the constructors’ championship, while Lewis Hamilton’s thrilling win last time out in Hungary increased his advantage in the drivers’ standings to 62 points over Valtteri Bottas.
“We’re leading in both championships, but it doesn’t feel that way,” Wolff said. “In the last few years, we saw teams perform very strongly after summer shutdown, so we know we need to keep pushing. In that respect, we’re approaching the start to the second half of 2019 more like the start to a completely new season – once again we need to make sure that we leave no room for error and keep raising the bar.”
The bar Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport set to start 2019 is high after the team began the season with five straight 1-2 finishes and notched double-digit victories through the first 12 events.
Now the challenge will be to continue securing strong results as rivals attempt to close the gap. And that starts at Spa-Francorchamps, where Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport have won three of the last four Belgian Grands Prix and have been on pole six years running.
“We’re very excited for the upcoming months with historic races like Belgium and Italy followed by the Singapore night race and many other fantastic events,” Wolff added. “The next stop takes us to Spa, one of the most iconic circuits on the calendar. Finding the right set-up is tricky because the track has a challenging mix of long straights, a wide range of corner speeds and also considerable elevation changes. The weather can also be somewhat unpredictable in the Ardennes which can make the sessions very interesting. We’re looking forward to the fight.”