Red Bull and Ferrari have been the two strongest teams over the course of the opening two race weekends in the 2022 Formula 1 season, with Mercedes lagging behind, yet Red Bull don’t consider Mercedes to be dead as a title challenger this year.
There has been a clear lack of pace and control from the Mercedes car this term, caused mainly by a porpoising issue that has made the vehicle incredibly difficult to control.
Yet, Red Bull know first-hand just how innovative the Mercedes mechanics and designers can be, and it isn’t expected to be a problem that hinders both Sir Lewis Hamilton and George Russell for too long.
“Mercedes can no longer click and suddenly it’s a party for them,” Red Bull chief Helmut Marko confirmed in an interview with Formel1.de.
“The team are very well positioned and also have some really important people in the chassis area. I’m completely convinced that they will come back if they control the porpoising, I don’t think it’s the end [of Mercedes’ era of dominance].”
New F1 regulations impacting every team
Marko was eager to point towards the differences between the new regulations of 2022 and those which began after 2013, where Mercedes had a huge power advantage.
“The post-2013 era coincided with the new engine rules and Mercedes had incredible dominance at that stage, they were up to two seconds ahead of everyone, but logically they didn’t show it,” Marko added.
“Now, with the change of chassis and engine, the differences aren’t so big.”
The 2022 season has begun with new power units that were required to use 10 percent ethanol in the fuel mixture, which is a five percent increase from previous seasons, something which Marko believes could be problematic for teams.
“I don’t know exactly why Mercedes have been left behind,” Marko continued.
“Surely it must have something to do with the increase in synthetic fuel, which went from five percent to 10 percent. Logic points to an explanation being related to fuel.”