We are only 12 races into the 2019 season and Mercedes looks to have already sealed a sixth-straight drivers’ and constructors’ championships.
An almost flawless performance, on-track and off by the team and both drivers has left its competitors in the dust.
An incredible performance that the squad didn’t expect pre-season.
SOUNDBITE (English) TOTO WOLFF,
HEAD OF MOTORSPORT, MERCEDES:
“I think that you can't say that we are aiming for a sixth title [double], because that would be ignoring the fact that there's a massive [aero] change of regulation, the points go back to zero and the five doubles that we have scored make us tremendously proud, but [they] give us no guarantee or no sense of entitlement for this sixth potential title.”
By the time the grid arrived in Germany, Mercedes had achieved a record breaking nine one/two finishes.
The first, Australia, which saw Valtteri Bottas start the new season looking rejuvenated, responding to criticism he endured at the end of 2018.
But other than the Finnish driver’s second win in Azerbaijan - it has been the five-time world champion Hamilton on top with eight race victories to continue his dominance in the championship.
Qualifying has been a much more even game, with Bottas starting higher than the Briton at five of the 12 races.
The only lowlight of the season for Mercedes came at its home event, the German Grand Prix at Hockenheim.
What began as a celebration of 125 years of Mercedes Benz motorsport, and the team’s 200th Grand Prix as a works team, saw Hamilton finish in ninth after an off, a botched pit stop and a new front wing. A mistake from Bottas meant his only DNF of the year so far, before damage limitation in Hungary after contact on the first lap.
The fact that the squad will choose between Esteban Ocon and Bottas for the 2020 seat means the summer break will be stressful for everyone but Hamilton, who is on his way to a sixth driver’s title.