Toto Wolff thinks that Mercedes will not be in the contention for the Bahrain Grand Prix victory.
The Silver Arrows are far from their best form at the start of the race weekend as they lack pace and have to deal with porpoising. Wolff states that they are unlikely to fight for the win on Sunday.
“As it stands, when we make our assumptions based on the free practice sessions, no,” the Mercedes team principal said.
“I think Red Bull are in a league of their own, and then there’s a bunch of teams that are in the corridor of fuel weight and engine modes.
“But it’s great to see the teams like [Alfa Romeo] and [Alpine] are right there the free practice sessions, and this is what I’ve said – the regulations were made in order to bunch the field up, and that’s what’s going to happen.”
At the same time, Wolff believes that Mercedes will be able to fix the issues and join in the title battle.
“Again, purely based on assumptions, that we’ve seen in terms of pace, I don’t think that we can match the leaders’ performance at the moment.
“I personally believe there are simple solutions to get the performance back, that start to crystallize, and [the season has] 23 races. Even if you lose a race or two, and you end up outside of the podium, nobody’s protected against DNFs or crashes, and we’ve seen last year they played a big role.
“We will give it whatever we can, bring updates as quickly as we can, understand the car more, and try to find performance.”