Mercedes fans across the globe have been waiting to see the Silver Arrows bounce back to their well-known strengths on track after the last two rounds of the 2021 season.
After Monaco and Azerbaijan, the team’s frustrations are being aired as they struggle to nail the perfect setup with the W12.
Sunday was a particular shock to the system for the championship-winning team, coming away with 0 points.
Valtteri Bottas took off from P10 on Sunday after a difficult qualifying session, however, Lewis Hamilton managed to claw some performance out of the Mercedes contender and landed in P2.
Bottas struggled for much of the race and failed to make any major moves up the field – ultimately ending the day worse off in P12.
Hamilton was in P3 at the race restart with two laps to finish, but after accidentally switching the balance in his brakes, the British champion had to exit the track on the run-off area and ended up crossing the line behind both Haas drivers in P15.
A furious Toto Wolff said they have underlying issues with the car that they will hope to overcome ahead of round 7.
“In Monaco and here we didn’t have a car that was competitive full stop”, he said.
“We have underlying issues – we are not getting the car in a happy window for the tyres.
“We know the deficit and we know we have gaps which we simply have to overcome but I have no doubt, this a team which is so strong and so angry, and we are going to turn that anger into positive form and come back.”
Meanwhile, Mercedes‘ trackside engineering director, Andrew Shovlin said the team knows the level you need to be at to win the championship but says they’re simply not there right now.
“An extremely disappointing end to the weekend but that’s just how luck pans out sometimes; Max’s misfortune put us in that position in the first place.
“The bigger issue that we have to deal with is that in the last two races we haven’t been good enough.
“Not fast enough, we’ve made mistakes, we struggle to switch the tyres on and we’ve been on the back-foot through free practice.
“We know the level it takes to win championships and we’re not at that level right now so we need to re-group and come back performing the way we know that we can.
“We have the team, the car, and the drivers to win this but we need to be tough and honest with ourselves over the next few days.
“We’ve had days like this before and each time we’ve come back strong and we’ll look do that in France.”