Catharsis and reconstruction of Mercedes in Formula 1 | Sports

What better scenario than the streets of Monte Carlo to carry out a catharsis like the one that Mercedes can undergo this weekend, all based on the impact of the package of updates that will be introduced there to the W14, the car with which Lewis Hamilton and George Russell have only managed to get on the podium once (Hamilton, in Australia) this season. Monaco is the sixth stop on the calendar and, even though the train for this World Cup already seems to have escaped the brand of the star, the revitalization of the Silver Arrows would mean that the latest analysis process of the car is correct, something that has been seriously in question for the last year and a half.

After losing the 2021 World Cup in that surreal last race in Abu Dhabi, Mercedes opted for a different path in the conception of its car with a view to 2022. The prototype is still there, on the couch, while the technicians look for answers they expected find the last weekend, in Imola, before the rainstorm that hit the Emilia Romagna region forced the cancellation of the test. The aggressive crash plan that will come to light as of this Friday should serve as a corrective factor for the team’s misinterpretation of the technical regulations that came on the scene last year, especially with regard to ground effect and its consequences.

Despite the fact that the German manufacturer has decided to use the new parts for the first time on the most particular circuit of all, the characteristics of the layout lead one to think that the conclusions will not be drawn until after the Spanish Grand Prix, next week in Montmeló, a track that, due to its profile, is the perfect thermometer for any element that is under evaluation. Above all, if one takes into account that the validation of these highly relevant components —waiting to be confirmed, everything points to a new floor, side pontoons and front suspension— requires considerable mileage that is difficult to achieve on the slides that wind down the Principality, where traffic is always a nightmare. Regardless of the verdict, the most dominant team in the series’ history, with seven consecutive double wins between 2014 and 2020, is already engaged in a rebuilding process that will affect its entire F1 division. This same week, the Stuttgart manufacturer revealed that the optimization of the structure that has been underway for several years will be taken to another level with the remodeling of its factory in Brackley (United Kingdom). The objective is to turn it into a complex in the style of those that multinationals such as Apple, Google or Meta, among others, have in Silicon Valley (California). “The Brackley campus was built to accommodate a total of 350 people, and at the moment we have reached 1,250 workers,” Totto Wolff, director of Mercedes, argued on Monday in a statement made to Autosport. The idea is that the project is finished by the end of 2025 and allows the entire workforce to benefit from common spaces, such as restaurants and gyms.

The Austrian executive, co-owner of the Mercedes F1 area, stands out, among other skills, for his ability to manage and motivate the work groups that are under his control. “All of this is obviously done for our people. We are not trying to win any kind of architecture award,” adds Wolff. “This is not like what some of our rivals did 20 years ago, which emphasized that architectural part more. Here, functionality rules over form, not the other way around”, points out the businessman, probably referring to the McLaren Technology Centre, designed by Norman Foster and inaugurated in 2004 after an investment of 500 million euros.

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