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Mercedes AMG F1 Team Thread (drivers, management, rumours and gossip!)


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#5101 beachdrifter

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Posted 14 August 2019 - 21:56

How about Ric replacing Bot?

 

They didn't want him last season. Why would they want him now that Bottas supposedly improved? 



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#5102 beachdrifter

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Posted 14 August 2019 - 22:00

But I don't agree it's as easy as you make out and I think there has to be some acknowledgement that one of the reasons Gasly is looking so poor is because Max is making him look so.  

 

I don't think he needs any help with that.

 

"Gasly has problems in traffic, he loses places and he can't overtake.

"So we had to react and give Albon a chance until the end of the season.

 



#5103 Nathan

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Posted 14 August 2019 - 23:53

How about Ric replacing Bot?

He is on a solid 2-year deal and I see no reason why Renault would let him go.  Cyril is a prick.



#5104 gillesfan76

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 00:01

.I think it's no easier for Max to impress against Gasly than it is for Lewis to impress against Bottas.


LOL you’re really serious aren’t you, that Gasly is as good as Bottas?

#5105 gillesfan76

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 00:08

How about Ric replacing Bot?


This. I think they would make a good pairing, However I think that, like almost all other drivers, he’ll come up short over a season against Lewis. But it would be a good change, also to see how he measures up against a reference.

#5106 w1Y

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 07:54

I think Max is the next elite driver after Lewis and I absolutely hate that as the changing of the guard comes one driver has to all of a sudden be classed as worse or better at different times of their careers. Its disrespectful. You can clearly see Max and Lewis both have a lot of respectfor each other in terms of on track speed

Thats why I want Lewis to get to 7 and hopefully 8. The media are going to have a hard time talking the most successful F1 driver ever down.

Lewis is an all time Great. Max not yet but yes he deifnately has the talent to do it and maybe surpass all records. But I really hope Norris, Russel, Albon and all the other young drivers that come through will be in a position to test him so we have a great future of racing.

I liked seeing his maturity in defeat in Hungary but it was clear it hit the verstappen camp hard. They were so quick to make sure the narrative was merc were faster (It may have been) but I also think it was a small dent into their unstoppable Max opinion they have painted on Max. He still drive an amazing race and he will win battles in the future but it was nice for lewis and merc to give them some humility. Ive deifnately warmed to Max since his early days.

Back to Merc. Hoping they both come back in prime condition and can take it to Ferrari and hold off Red Bull in Spa.

#5107 Sennasational

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 09:51

what's in it for Renault to agree?

 

They'd kill for some Mercedes engines. 



#5108 shure

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 11:16

LOL you’re really serious aren’t you, that Gasly is as good as Bottas?

It would help if you read the rest of the post.  Once they have proven themselves better than the other driver the rest is irrelevant.  They will both always be better than the other driver so will always look good against them



#5109 Hela

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 11:28

It would help if you read the rest of the post.  Once they have proven themselves better than the other driver the rest is irrelevant.  They will both always be better than the other driver so will always look good against them

 

I think he meant to what degree of "impression" is what was being referred to. 

Max outracing Gasly in 10 races & and outqualifying  him by an average of 7 tenths can be compared to Lewis doing the same with Gasly (if it so happens) but cannot be compared in isolation with Lewis and Bottas where the margin is closer.

 

You can't simply say that lewis being better than Bottas is the only comparison as most forumers look at the gap between them and how often they challenge or beat their team mate. With Bottas and Lewis the chances are higher simply because Bottas looks a better and faster driver than Gasly. 

 

Hope that makes sense


Edited by Hela, 15 August 2019 - 12:35.


#5110 onemoresolo

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 11:30

what's in it for Renault to agree?

 

It's reported he has a clause in his Renault contract allowing him to leave for Ferrari or Merc if they come knocking.

 

But I can't see why Mercedes would. As others said, he was available last year and they didn't choose him.



#5111 shure

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 12:35

I think he meant to what degree of "impression" is what was being referred to. 

Max outracing Gasly in 10 races & and outqualifying  him by an average of 7 tenths can be compared to Lewis doing the same with Gasly (if it so happens) but cannot be compared with in isolation with Lewis and Bottas where the margin is closer.

 

You can't simply say that lewis being better than Bottas is the only comparison as most forumers look at the gap between them and how often they challenge or beat their team mate. With Bottas and Lewis the chances are higher simply because Bottas looks a better and faster driver than Gasly. 

 

Hope that makes sense

It does, yes thanks

 

Agreed that making absolute comparisons is all but impossible, but the central point was that overall if Driver A is better than Driver B then it's relatively easy for him to shine.  As long as he stays ahead, then he'll look good. And if he's naturally better anyway is that such a hard thing to do?



#5112 beachdrifter

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 16:01

Wolff preparing us for the inevitable: 
 

Wolff highlights Bottas’ results in qualifying as a barometer for his improvement from last year, and thinks he is getting better and better even though his last race win was some months ago.

“His qualifying performance are great and he has raised the deficits he had against Lewis. I think we are seeing a stronger Valtteri from race to race,” the Austrian added.


https://www.gpfans.c...s-a-gift-wolff/

In reality though, the 4 points scored in the last 2 races were the lowest total in consecutive races since he joined the team in 2017. Race pace is problematic as ever, from what I can tell. Race craft is what it is. We'll see again in Spa and Monza what that means for the team, with other drivers in the mix at the front.

Edited by beachdrifter, 15 August 2019 - 16:02.


#5113 Viryfan

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 16:36

Wolff preparing us for the inevitable: 
 

https://www.gpfans.c...s-a-gift-wolff/

In reality though, the 4 points scored in the last 2 races were the lowest total in consecutive races since he joined the team in 2017. Race pace is problematic as ever, from what I can tell. Race craft is what it is. We'll see again in Spa and Monza what that means for the team, with other drivers in the mix at the front.

 

The interview was done before Hockenheim (in the Mercedes museum) where he said also that Bottas renewal was a formality.

 

The most recent interview from Wolff is here.

 

https://www.gazzetta...694122462.shtml

 

 

Basically saying that Lewis thinks that both Bottas and Ocon deserve the seat.

 

The choice is difficult and that they may delay the decision.


Edited by Viryfan, 15 August 2019 - 16:37.


#5114 beachdrifter

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 16:49

The interview was done before Hockenheim (in the Mercedes museum) where he said also that Bottas renewal was a formality.


Thanks! Is there a reference that I overlooked?

I haven't watched that interview anyway.

I also recall Wolff saying that the last 2 races (after they didn't go Bottas' way) don't really change a thing. So it should still be a formality then, at least from Wolff's perspective.

Edited by beachdrifter, 15 August 2019 - 16:50.


#5115 Viryfan

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 16:55

Thanks! Is there a reference that I overlooked?

I haven't watched that interview anyway.

I also recall Wolff saying that the last 2 races (after they didn't go Bottas' way) don't really change a thing. So it should still be a formality then, at least from Wolff's perspective.

 

 

That was not in the interview you put.

 

https://www.motorspo...msache-19072514

 

I guess that they will wait to see Ocon sign a contract elsewhere before they confirm Bottas in order to not be caught off guard like last year.



#5116 beachdrifter

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 17:00

The most recent interview from Wolff is here.

 

https://www.gazzetta...694122462.shtml

 

 

Radio paddock is convinced that the choice has already been taken in favor of the renewal

 

What I've been thinking all along.



#5117 Viryfan

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 17:03

Radio paddock is convinced that the choice has already been taken in favor of the renewal

 

What I've been thinking all along.

 

They are waiting in order not to weaken their negotiation position for Ocon.

 

Question is: will the other teams bite into that?

 

My take is no unless mercedes accept to loose money on Ocon....

 

Mercedes does not really have a strong hand in the case of Ocon.

 

They either choose to put his career in the bin or loose money.


Edited by Viryfan, 15 August 2019 - 17:04.


#5118 beachdrifter

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 17:08

They either choose to put his career in the bin or loose money.

 

What do you mean? They lose money when they do what? 



#5119 Viryfan

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 17:12

What do you mean? They lose money when they do what? 

 

 

F1 teams won't take him on loan anymore, so if Ocon is going to be on the grid it will be without Mercedes links.

 

Mercedes has invested roughly 20 millions euros on him, so they either choose to kill his f1 prospects or they burn that money invested as it will benefit to the competition.



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#5120 w1Y

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 17:29

One question as always is what confidential technology/engineering information does Ocon have. I mean he must have picked up quite a lot.

#5121 beachdrifter

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 17:31

F1 teams won't take him on loan anymore, so if Ocon is going to be on the grid it will be without Mercedes links.

 

Mercedes has invested roughly 20 millions euros on him, so they either choose to kill his f1 prospects or they burn that money invested as it will benefit to the competition.

 

Wolff has already stated that that (standing in the way of another team signing him) won't happen, so it's not really an option that's on the table. 

 

He has also mentioned they can bring him back later. They are however - from my perspective - burning money by yet again signing Bottas instead of Ocon. A big chunk of that development cost could be recouped just by giving Ocon the seat for a year. But they obviously don't want to do that, so for Wolff it's probably about getting Ocon a contract before the Bottas renewal is made public. It would just look a lot better from a PR standpoint (especially for Toto) than simply confirming Bottas right away for yet another year, with Ocon's future still up in the air.


Edited by beachdrifter, 15 August 2019 - 17:35.


#5122 SonGoku

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 17:38

Wolff needs to show some balls and make a decision now. Otherwise it will be too late for Ocon or Bottas to find another seat.

#5123 anyeis

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 17:52

Wolff is probably thinking if the is going to start bidding war for Verstappen more than anything else. If he does that Ocon dosent make sense there. If Verstappen signs to Merc before Hamilton its getting intresting


Edited by anyeis, 15 August 2019 - 17:54.


#5124 Piif

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 06:15

I think all the signs point to Mercs real target being Verstappen for '21. If this is the case, I don't see why anyone would need to make a big deal of letting Ocon go for a couple of years. Mercedes are in a position where they can get anyone thay want if they're willing to invest. It's not like they'd loose Ocon (or anyone) for good if they go to another team.

#5125 Marklar

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 06:35

There is actually a possible scenario of them being left with a weak line-up if Hamilton decides to retire and Max (wants to win with RB and the Honds project just started), Leclerc and Vettel (both want to win with Ferrari) are staying put, which isnt even that unlikely if their teams are competitive next year. Not to mention that we'll have rule changes in 2021 which could temper drivers to just wait for that and then move (like it happened in 2014-15)

The thing is just Ocon appears to be more on Bottas' level, so securing him wouldnt even save them from that scenario, unless he somehow turns out to be a elite driver. And even if so, the only top cockpit available to him would be Mercedes anyway, so he would just end up returning.

I'm also not sure if they really target Max primarly for 2021. As long as he is on that level they probably would like to keep Hamilton and having both seems pretty explosive to me. They can always pre-sign him for when Hamilton retires, which I think is also in both drivers interest, if he even wants. It could of course end up like Ferrari in 2006 again though. Then there is also Russell, who seems to have the talent for this, but how will he build up to this? 2021 alongside Hamilton, then continue as a team leader? Would they trust him on that or would they hire Max alongside him to be safe?

#5126 Baddoer

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 07:07

If Mercedes does not want problems with Hamilton they should keep Bottas. He does the job, Mercedes leading WCC, so the replacement is not neccessary.

Obviously they can't keep Ocon (and Russel) baking forever, but here is always Formula E available.



#5127 Viryfan

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 07:36


The thing is just Ocon appears to be more on Bottas' level, so securing him wouldnt even save them from that scenario, unless he somehow turns out to be a elite driver. And even if so, the only top cockpit available to him would be Mercedes anyway, so he would just end up returning.

 

 

No team will accept any kind of re-call clause for Ocon.



#5128 Piif

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 08:43

Ocon won't get a more than 2-year deal anywhere so it doesn't really matter. In '21, there are so many options and variables that anything can happen with any driver. To think further ahead is pointless:

 

- If Hamilton quits/moves to Ferrari, just pick Vettel, Russel, Ricciardo or _whoever you want_ because Merc can do that. If he doesn't, then continue with him.

- If Verstappen is available, do anything to sign him as Hamilton won't be there for much longer in any case. Max will be 23 in '21 so he still has some 15 years in him at that point.

- If Verstappen isn't available, look to Ocon/Russel and see how they've progressed. Pick whoever you want, because again, you have the money and the car to have anyone you want in the team.

- If Ocon/Russel don't seem good enough for '21, pick anyone you want.

- And have a look at all the newcomers that will have made it to the grid meanwhile.

 

The whole discussion is absurd. Mercedes are in a position where they don't need to play the long game with drivers, they can pick out whoever they want. So they should maximize their results one season at a time imo.



#5129 Retrofly

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 08:52

Have Mercedes committed to staying in F1 for a certain amount of time, I always get the feeling that Merc will pull out of the sport when they stop winning.



#5130 Marklar

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 08:59

No team will accept any kind of re-call clause for Ocon.

It's not even needed though?

He can just sign somewhere for two years, then he is available again for 2022, no? If Hamilton doesnt retire before that or if they pre-sign Verstappen I dont really see the problem. The only scenario where it would backfire is if no elite driver want to sign for them and Hamilton retires and Russell doesnt turn out to be good, which is possible as mentioned, but that all things happen seems unlikely (plus I even forgot Ricciardo who is somewhere between elite and top driver level too and probably would sign for Mercedes even if they would drop in the competitive order). And this entire scenario is even running under the assumption that Ocon is that good, which is also questionable.



#5131 baddog

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 09:10

I have a gut feeling Merc are going to bite the bullet and put him in next year. 



#5132 SonGoku

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 09:32

If Wolff really wants Verstappen, Ocon has probably one year to convince Wolff. Hamilton already confirmed he will continue after this contract.

#5133 doc83

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 10:07

Have Mercedes committed to staying in F1 for a certain amount of time, I always get the feeling that Merc will pull out of the sport when they stop winning.

 

I've got a feeling they will pull out after next year. 



#5134 balage06

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 10:41

I've got a feeling they will pull out after next year. 

 

Not sure about that...

https://www.grandpri...-at-least-2025/



#5135 w1Y

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 11:21

I think long term they will be looking to replace lewis with Max.He is the best bet for a long term championship material. Unless of course lewis commits for the longer term. If not then the timings are a bit of a problem. It also hits one of their main competitors quite hard by taking max.

One thing is almost certain. Max will become one of, if not the most well paid driver of all time in the future. He is in a very strong position.

#5136 alframsey

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 11:24

Just please put Ocon in or sign someone who will take the fight to Lewis, as much as I am a fan of his he is best when being pushed by a teammate or rival. It is so boring watching him stroke home the victories. Bottas just doesn't have it and if the field were closer we'd be seeing Merc lose points to others in the WCC. I don't believe that Ocon necessarily has the talent to beat Lewis to a WDC but I do believe he is hungry enough and talented enough to push him closer than Bottas is. Afterall it takes a certain type of driver to not be crushed by Lewis, does Ocon have that ability and mental toughness? Tbh though I'd much rather they get Alonso into that other Merc and let them have at each other, I know not gonna happen.



#5137 alframsey

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 11:27

I think long term they will be looking to replace lewis with Max.He is the best bet for a long term championship material. Unless of course lewis commits for the longer term. If not then the timings are a bit of a problem. It also hits one of their main competitors quite hard by taking max.

One thing is almost certain. Max will become one of, if not the most well paid driver of all time in the future. He is in a very strong position.

Do you think they would take Max in 2021 over Lewis if they could sign either of them? Long term it would make sense to get Max tied to a contract with the team but also Lewis is Merc now I feel, would be weird should they not renew if he is still performing at this level.



#5138 Retrofly

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 11:50

Do you think they would take Max in 2021 over Lewis if they could sign either of them? Long term it would make sense to get Max tied to a contract with the team but also Lewis is Merc now I feel, would be weird should they not renew if he is still performing at this level.

They would have Max + Lewis in the car if Lewis didn't want to leave and they really wanted Max.

I dont think Merc will ever turn down a contract from Hamilton.



#5139 AnR

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 12:05

They would have Max + Lewis in the car if Lewis didn't want to leave and they really wanted Max.

I dont think Merc will ever turn down a contract from Hamilton.

 

Don't think any team would spend that amount of money that it would it cost to have both, off course a 21 year old Max is attractive before a 35 year old Lewis if Merc intend to stay in F1.

They have shown intentions but not commited beyond 2021?


Edited by AnR, 16 August 2019 - 12:06.


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#5140 doc83

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 12:12

 

Thanks for the link. Haven't seen it before. I thought the new CEO will be more pessimistic. Guess I was wrong.



#5141 Piif

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 12:41

If Wolff really wants Verstappen, Ocon has probably one year to convince Wolff. Hamilton already confirmed he will continue after this contract.

 

But not that he's continuing with Mercedes...



#5142 Sunnny

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 12:53

 

The whole discussion is absurd. Mercedes are in a position where they don't need to play the long game with drivers, they can pick out whoever they want. So they should maximize their results one season at a time imo.

 

You have said what I have been saying all along. This is Merc not a team like McLaren/Renault who have to fight hard to get or retain a quality driver. Last time Merc fought to get one was 2012. Since then drivers have been begging to be part of them. If Lewis quits tomorrow 90% of the drivers will be ringing up Toto and their lawyers to check their get out clauses. Merc are going to remain and elite team for as long as they are in F1. When you are that big not just in F1 but general life,  it's people that come to you not the other way round. I'd say right now drivers are more likely to shun Ferrari for Merc. That's how big they are.  



#5143 SonGoku

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 12:56

Wolff confirmed he asked Lewis' opinion about both drivers, Wolff said he did it because Lewis is now "part of the organization".

#5144 noikeee

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 13:30

Wolff confirmed he asked Lewis' opinion about both drivers, Wolff said he did it because Lewis is now "part of the organization".


🤣

Wolff's full of ****. Yes he's part of the organisation, as the number 1 driver.

#5145 Garndell

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 14:20

I would like Ocon for 2020 just because Bottas has had 3 years and hasn't pushed on, he's had his shot and missed the target too often.  I'd also not have Toto or Lewis involved, both have a potential or existing bias.  As far as Max for 2020/21 or whatever, him & his team have shown time and again he doesn't want a driver in the other car who can challenge him.

 

Of course if Alonso was an option then he'd be my choice for the other seat :lol:



#5146 Retrofly

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 14:57


Wolff's full of ****. Yes he's part of the organisation, as the number 1 driver.

Why not, he can have as much influence and participation as Merc want to give him, he's a person like anyone else at the organization.



#5147 MKSixer

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 15:25

Why not, he can have as much influence and participation as Merc want to give him, he's a person like anyone else at the organization.

I agree and would like to amplify with this:  Lewis is, arguably, the person most affected by this decision.  Any sane management team would listen very carefully to the input he has with regard to this decision.  Anything less would be insanity and Mercedes isn't insane.  Not at all. 



#5148 Marklar

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 15:34

Hamilton actually mentioned in 2016 that Mercedes is contractually obligated to show him a shortlist of potential team mates before they hire one lol

Edit:

“Contractually what they have to do, basically, once they have dwindled it down to five drivers, or whatever it is, the shortlist, contractually they have to discuss with me. But I don’t have a say [in] who it is.”


Or in Toto's words this week

I state that we make this type of choice solely on the basis of the interest of the team but Lewis has been with us for a long time, so, yes, I submitted our narrow list to him, asking for his opinion: well he thinks exactly like us, both of them deserve to be his teammate for him


:p

Edited by Marklar, 16 August 2019 - 15:41.


#5149 beachdrifter

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 19:29

Or in Toto's words this week

:p

 

Toto submitted a narrow list to Lewis with the following candidates: 

 

  1. Bottas
  2. Valtteri
  3. Valtteri Bottas
  4. V. B. 

... and let him pick one.


Edited by beachdrifter, 16 August 2019 - 19:36.


#5150 beachdrifter

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 19:37

Thanks for the link. Haven't seen it before. I thought the new CEO will be more pessimistic. Guess I was wrong.

 

They are the most committed team in F1 these days.