Formula 1

Mercedes’ Toto Wolff Jests Post-Mexico GP: Scrutineering Suspense After Hamilton’s P2 Finish

In a humorous yet pointed remark following the Mexico Grand Prix, Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff quipped about the team not passing scrutineering yet, referencing Lewis Hamilton’s recent disqualification. This comment came after Hamilton secured a P2 finish, mirroring his performance in the United States Grand Prix where he was disqualified.

Key Takeaways:

  • Toto Wolff, Mercedes’ team principal, made a light-hearted comment about scrutineering after Lewis Hamilton finished second in the Mexico Grand Prix. This was a nod to Hamilton’s disqualification in the United States GP for excessive skid block wear, which also resulted in a P2 finish.
  • Hamilton’s performance in Mexico was a significant recovery from the setback in Austin, with him finishing just over two seconds behind Max Verstappen and setting the race’s fastest lap. Wolff expressed his satisfaction with the car’s performance and Hamilton’s brilliant drive, despite ongoing challenges.
  • Wolff was uncertain if Hamilton had the pace to challenge Verstappen throughout the race. He acknowledged the need for better qualifying and the unpredictable performance of their W14 F1 car, noting a rare positive comment from Hamilton regarding the car’s handling.

In the wake of the recent Mexico Grand Prix, Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff expressed a mixture of humor and caution. His comment, “Well, we haven’t passed scrutineering yet. So let’s not praise the day before the evening,” highlighted the team’s apprehension following Hamilton’s earlier disqualification in the United States GP. This disqualification came after Hamilton, who had originally finished P2, was penalized due to excessive skid block wear on his car, a fate that also befell Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc.

The Mexican GP, expected to be dominated by Ferrari based on their qualifying results, turned out to be a moment of redemption for Hamilton. He not only secured P2 but also recorded the fastest lap of the race, a significant comeback from the disappointment in Austin. Wolff, while pleased with the team’s performance, remained cautiously optimistic, acknowledging the ongoing struggles with the W14 F1 car and the need for better qualifying to fully challenge race leader Max Verstappen.

Hamilton’s consistent issues with his car have been a recurring theme this season. However, Wolff noted a rare moment of positivity from Hamilton regarding the car’s performance during the race. He humorously remarked, “It’s been 12 years now that we have been discussing during the race, ‘They’re [the tires] not going to last’, but today I think it was the first [time] he said the car is actually good! It was a brilliant, brilliant drive and we have these oscillations in performance, we don’t really know, sometimes the tyres stick, sometimes not.”

Wolff’s comments underscore the complexities and uncertainties in Formula 1 racing, where even a strong performance like Hamilton’s in Mexico does not guarantee a smooth path forward. The team’s cautious optimism reflects the high stakes and intense scrutiny that comes with competing at the top level of motor racing.

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