F1: Mercedes reveal plan for Canadian Grand Prix upgrades as they look to build on Monaco ‘momentum’ | F1 News

Mercedes have revealed they will bring further upgrades to the Canadian Grand Prix as they look to build on their “momentum” from recent F1 events.

Team principal Toto Wolff says while “the progress is not yet showing in terms of positions” they “know it will in due course” if they maintain their recent rate of development amid a general tightening of the field at the front of F1.

Mercedes’ best result in a Grand Prix so far in 2024 remains fifth but the team were encouraged by the performance of a new front wing introduced on George Russell’s car at the last race in Monaco.

Speaking in the team’s post-Monaco debrief video, after a race in which Russell and Lewis Hamilton finished fifth and seventh respectively either side of Red Bull’s Max Verstappen, trackside engineering director Andrew Shovlin said of their hopes for Montreal: “We are certainly hoping to build on the momentum that we have had recently, closing that gap to the front.

“We have got some smaller updates. We are certainly going to have front wing two on both cars. That is something that we have been working on and we will make sure we can deliver that.”

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A look back at the drivers who have fallen victim to the infamous ‘Wall of Champions’ over the years at the Canadian Grand Prix

Assessing how the upgrade brought to Monaco’s unique street track performed, Shovlin said: “There is a reason teams do not normally bring update kits to Monaco, which is the very low-speed nature of the circuit. The fact it is so busy, the short straights, it is very hard to actually evaluate anything.

“All the data we have seen though, says that it was delivering performance, it was bringing a benefit in terms of how the car was feeling.

“George was happy with that, and he could feel that it was a step in the right direction. We are happy with what we have seen to date, but we will learn more in Montreal and then particularly when you get to a track like Barcelona with a wider corner speed range, you can really start to learn about it there.”

Wolff, in Mercedes’ Montreal preview, added: “We continue to make solid progress with our car, improving its overall balance and taking a step closer to those ahead.

“Both drivers will have the new front wing, and there will be some other development items for this event. The new front wing offered a small lap-time gain around the tight streets of the principality, and should offer greater benefit on upcoming circuits.

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Lewis Hamilton says there are encouraging signs for Mercedes as upgrades keep coming after a positive result in Monaco

“The front of the field is incredibly competitive. It has compressed and we are under no illusions that others will continue to improve,” he said.

“We have to continue to work hard to get ourselves into the mix.”

Hamilton suggested Russell used new front wing first

Shovlin, meanwhile, revealed that it was Hamilton who suggested that Russell ran the then-sole new front wing that Mercedes had available for Monaco.

The Mercedes engineer explained that while they traditionally prefer to have “race quantities” of the new parts available – one for each of their two cars and then a spare – before introducing them into a race weekend, their current performance predicament had led to a change of approach at the behest of the drivers, with the first opportunity to adopt it coming with the front wing in Monaco.

“A while ago, the drivers asked why we always wait until we have got a full set? Why not just let one of us run it?” explained Shovlin.

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Speaking on the Sky Sports F1 Podcast, Simon Lazenby says he’s surprised that Red Bull’s rivals appear to have narrowed the gap this season

“We agreed with them that given the situation with the team in terms of performance, we need to improve, and we need to learn. It is quite good to have different specs on the car to do that.

“We did agree with the drivers that where we are now, we will be happy to bring one to the track and they were both happy with that.

“The difficult question was how do we decide who was going to run it? But Lewis said, if we are going to start doing this where we have not got enough parts, let George run it in Monaco, there will be races in the future where we have a single update and of course we just alternate from here on in.

“But Lewis made that decision quite simple for us.”

Sky Sports F1’s live Canadian GP schedule

Thursday June 6
7.30pm: Drivers’ Press Conference

Friday June 7
6pm: Canadian GP Practice One (session starts at 6.30pm)
8pm: The F1 Show
9.45pm: Canadian GP Practice Two (session starts at 10pm)

Montreal hosts the ninth round of the 2024 F1 season with the Canadian Grand Prix

Saturday June 8
5.15pm: Canadian GP Practice Three (session starts at 5.30pm)
8pm: Canadian GP Qualifying build-up
9pm: Canadian GP Qualifying
11pm: Ted’s Qualifying Notebook

Sunday June 9
5.30pm: Grand Prix Sunday – Canadian GP build-up
7pm: THE CANADIAN GRAND PRIX
9pm: Chequered Flag – Canadian GP reaction
10pm: Ted’s Notebook

Formula 1 leaves Europe for the final time before the summer break as the championship moves on to Montreal for the Canadian Grand Prix. Watch every session at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve this weekend live on Sky Sports F1, with Sunday’s race at 7pm. Stream every F1 race and more with a NOW Sports Month Membership – No contract, cancel anytime

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