James Vowles, Mercedes Cheif Strategist, fears the struggles of porpoising ruining the 2022 season for the team. The start of the season for the Silver Arrows is not what they hoped and left in Abu Dhabi 2021.
The new pair, Lewis Hamilton and George Russell is going through a ‘painful’ jumping of the car on the straight. This is because of the downforce effect that causes a vacuum under the car forces car to get up and again the aero pushes it down, making it seems like it’s bouncing, or else called porpoising.
This has been the worst start of the season for the Brit team since 2014. The defending champions are trying their level best to find the perfect set-up that would reduce the ground effect as much as possible.
They successfully managed to bring that up on Miami Friday. Russell was the fastest in FP2, making it clear that the work put into W13 seems to bring the result they wanted. However, over the weekend they lost the gained paced but still managed to finish P5 and P6.
The team is still figuring out the reason behind the pace loss they suffered. So do agree with Vowles, he mentioned in a podcast with F1-nation, that the pace Russell had wasn’t just a fluke but he was genuinely fast and is still no explanation for what happened later on.
What are James Vowles and Mercedes planning over the season?
Mercedes after still struggling with the correct setup but have their best shot for the weekend in Spain. At the moment the team isn’t looking for further development of the car but is now finding the direct solution for its pace loss.
During the winter testing in Barcelona, they had an overall new setup which was later on changed to the present W13. But as the next race happens to be in Spain they now can figure out the difference caused over the season and the upgrades they brought with what they had before the season started, says vowels himself.
“A small correction. We have not been to Barcelona with this car yet. We were in Barcelona with the old specification.”
He also said, “That’s the interesting learning point; we can draw a line in the sand and compare it with the aerodynamic solutions we had then.”
Mercedes arent still working to compete this season, the only thing affecting them are the puzzles they hope to solve as fast as possible.