Mercedes pair Lewis Hamilton and George Russell believe they can catch Red Bull in 2024 and regain their constructors crown and top spot in Formula 1.
Since the F1 season’s curtain raiser in Bahrain, Red Bull have won all but one race in 2023, helping them wrap up the Constructors’ Championship at the 2023 Japanese Grand Prix in late September.
Mercedes’ chances of second in the constructors’ race against Ferrari were boosted by Carlos Sainz‘s failure to start the Qatar GP. Ferrari trail Mercedes by 28 points ahead of the United States GP on October 20-22.
“I have 100 percent faith in the team back at the factory,” Hamilton said to the press. “They are working away on [the 2024 car].
“We don’t know where [Red Bull is] progressing, so I think we just have to focus on our job and not necessarily focus on closing that gap. It’s going to be what it is.
“By the time we get to that first race, hopefully, it is closed.”
Confident Mercedes can rectify errors
Although an improvement on its predecessor, the troublesome W13, Mercedes are still yet to win in 2023, and will take an alternative technical direction for 2024, abandoning its ‘no’ sidepods concept.
Mercedes also reshuffled its technical team before April’s Azerbaijan GP, with James Allison returning to his former role as technical director as his then-successor Mike Elliott moved back into his position as chief technical officer.
“I think when we look at our car, we see a number of flaws in it,” admitted Russell. “It’s not like we’re looking at it scratching our head thinking, where can we improve it?
“We think there’s loads of places we can improve it. We’ve made some really good findings recently with regards to the aero of the car and some of the bits, which is looking very promising.
“But we can never promise what we’re going to deliver over the winter in terms of a result because it’s a relative game. We can only focus on ourselves, but I’m extremely confident in my team.
“Very confident in the direction we’re heading. We won’t trip up and make a mistake as we have done [in] these past few seasons.”