The Mercedes F1 team hasn’t exactly had the best of campaigns this season, despite finishing second in the Constructors’ Championship.
The Silver Arrows currently have 305 points, 318 behind Red Bull, who have already won the title after six races this season. Despite Mercedes’ lackluster performance compared to Red Bull, McLaren team principal Andrea Stella believes it is the Silver Arrows, not the Milton Keynes outfit, that they fear most ahead of the 2024 season.
Red Bull has been in a world of dominance this season, winning 15 out of 16 races. Max Verstappen won 13, while Sergio Perez won the other two. Meanwhile, Mercedes has yet to win a single race this season and is battling Ferrari for second place in the championship. Silver Arrow currently has a 20-point advantage over third-placed Ferrari.
Meanwhile, McLaren, who are hoping for a marked improvement on Mercedes in 2024, are currently fifth in the championship with just 172 points. Stella fears that Mercedes will significantly develop its car in 2024 McLaren team principal Andrea Stella explained in a recent interview how there are encouraging signs for his side about next year’s car. However, he believes a move to 2024 is likely to be a win-win for all teams, with both sides having more clarity after assessing their struggles this season. Of all the teams, he named Mercedes the most.
We don’t know if we will improve faster than Red Bull. Let’s not forget Mercedes, who I think they have understood what they have to work on. I suspect they will put up with enough resistance. There are no facts to say now, that it is the order of the beak that we will see next year. Things can evolve,” he explained (quoted by soymotor.com). The Italian then finished his speech by explaining how the Woking outfit are currently ahead of expectations this season.
The 52-year-old believes that the way his team started the 2023 season, they have done a remarkable job to be where they are today. McLaren has shown amazing success this season Considering how McLaren started the 2023 season, they have improved significantly this season.
At the beginning of the campaign, the team fought incredibly hard just to get points. However, in the second half of the season, the team constantly fought for podium places. The Woking outfit have collected 57 points from the last two races and are back in fourth place in the Constructors’ Championship.
Although fourth-placed Aston Martin currently trail them by a further 49 points, given McLaren’s improvement, they could be in contention with the Silverstone-based outfit.