Mercedes suddenly find themselves in a brilliant position in the F1 season, after a torrid start. Hamilton and Bottas take front row at the Spanish GP and the new updates seem to working seamlessly.
Now, Pirelli have gone to introduce ‘thinner’ tyres for this weekend, following the blisters and overheating issues that cars suffered during winter testing.
Rival teams have suggested that the change might have been influenced by Mercedes, who suffered major problems with their tyres in March.
Toto Wolff has absolutely denied those allegations as all teams had suffered heavy blistering.
“Is bollocks a bad word in English?” Wolff said
“Rubbish. All teams had blistering, very heavy blistering at the test in Barcelona.
“Red Bull, Ferrari, ourselves. McLaren have seen it I think also. The tyres wouldn’t have lasted in the race.
“And the ambient, and the track temperatures, were arctic. And for that reason Pirelli changed the thickness of the tyre to prevent blistering, and they’ve been successful at preventing the blistering because we haven’t see it on any car today.
“So I don’t know where suddenly this rumour comes out that we have been influencing Pirelli and the FIA to change any tyres. I have never seen anything working like that, why should they do it?” he added.
Wolff credited the cooler conditions for Mercedes faring well in qualifying yesterday, as Mercedes locked up the front row.
“We seem to be competitive when the ambient is a bit cooler and the track temperature is a bit cooler.
“That is a pattern that we had in the last years also. We’re working on a system to change the climate wherever we go!”
Wolff emphasised on the fact that you can’t expect cars to go 0.5s faster with the new upgrades. The upgrades only bring about minor gains.
“Every team brought upgrades, but in F1 there’s no such thing where you put an upgrade on the car and it goes half a second quicker.
“Somebody says that, he has no clue. It’s about adding marginal gains onto the car and then making them work.
“I don’t think that we’ve made a step change that suddenly the car is transformed. We just had the car and the tyres in the right window today, and we need to replicate that in the next races.
“It’s not about bolting aero parts on the car and then suddenly changing the behaviour.” he concluded.