2015 F1

Mercedes F1 W06 not designed for Singapore says Lowe


Mercedes F1 W06 not designed for Singapore says Lowe

Mercedes F1 W06 not designed for Singapore says Lowe

Mercedes sounded a little wiser on Thursday about its mysterious performance slump of Singapore.

Although just a few days of head-scratching and analysis have passed since arguably the team’s worst performance of the ‘power unit’ era, technical chief Paddy Lowe sounded sure Singapore was the culmination of a multitude of small factors.

Firstly, he told Germany’s Auto Motor und Sport that the W06 is not designed for street tracks like Singapore.

“The aero characteristics of our car is for efficiency,” Lowe said, “so that’s maximum downforce with as little drag as possible. That is why we are so strong on circuits like Suzuka and Spa.

“And that’s why we find tracks where only maximum downforce is required more difficult,” he added, explaining that because Red Bull for instance is down on power, they have a completely different approach to car design.

Lowe said Mercedes’ designers divide the 19 current circuits into 3 categories: street tracks Monaco and Singapore, high-speed tracks Spa and Monza, and ‘the rest’.

“We have optimised our car for the rest,” he revealed, adding that the second priority is the fastest tracks.

“Since wind tunnel time is limited, you have to decide where you put your priorities,” said Lowe, who thinks Mercedes also made setup mistakes in Singapore.

“Singapore was also our weakest circuit last year,” he recalled.

And finally, he thinks top teams Ferrari and Red Bull brought specific upgrade packages to Singapore, while Mercedes did not.

At Suzuka, however, the silver-clad team has new front and rear wings and engine cover.

Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel, who won in Singapore, said on Thursday that Mercedes’ struggle last weekend was a surprise.

“It was a big surprise to see Mercedes struggling, which I don’t expect to be the case here,” he said at Suzuka. “Again, it would be a big surprise.” (GMM)

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2 Comments
  • Jerry Holloway

    More like a case of hindsight being 20/20.

  • Patrick Chapman

    Surely they knew this before the Singapore GP? Why didn’t they say before the GP that they expect the Singapore GP to be their weakest race as the car is not designed for this type of track. And if they knew this then why the big surprise and puzzlement afterwards? Sounds Like an extremely poor attempt at a cover up of something. Once again and as per usual, the F1 fans are being treated like idiots.

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