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Mercedes planning next big upgrade for Silverstone

Mercedes is hopeful it can continue to close the gap to championship leader Red Bull over the next four races, with two upgrades planned ahead of Formula One’s summer break.

The team introduced a major upgrade at the Monaco Grand Prix with the aim of opening up a new, more fruitful development direction.

Podium finishes at the last two races in Spain and Canada have boosted confidence at Mercedes and team boss Toto Wolff stated another step is planned in two races’ time at the British Grand Prix in early July.

“We are bringing a larger one to Silverstone and we should have another one before [summer] shutdown,” Wolff said. “It’s just that the learnings have accelerated a lot since we changed some of the conceptual architecture [in Monaco].

“There should be decent steps coming in the next four races.”

Wolff said the team has continued to unlock performance since introducing its last big upgrade at Monaco last month.

“I think we are understanding better the simulations and they now correlate what we are seeing on track, and that is better because it has been a problem for the last one and half years,” he added.

“We are seeing good performance gains that are coming in the tunnel. We are seeing a better understanding of what the car needs in order to go fast, what the setup needs to look like, so in general the steps are getting bigger now. We are making good in-roads.”

Mercedes has pinpointed a lack of rear grip in slow-speed corners as one of its main weaknesses compared to rival teams.

“That was the problem of the car all along, since we started last year,” Wolff said. “We have a strong front, but the rear is still trailing and it’s still not good enough.

“We’ve seen that in Canada, particularly out of the low-speed corners we lack traction and stability.”

Mercedes is currently second in the constructors’ championship, 154 points behind Red Bull and 13 points clear of Aston Martin in third.

Steve Carr

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