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Mercedes: We have upgrades in the pipeline

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Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton can expect some performance upgrades to his car this season despite Mercedes boss Toto Wolff saying at the weekend that development had stopped.

Technical head James Allison told Formula One’s ‘F1 Nation’ podcast there were still a few things working their way along the pipeline.

“We have a reasonable number of things that are going to make our car faster in the coming races,” he said. “Let’s hope they prove sufficient.”

Mercedes, who are the winners of every title for the past seven seasons, are 40 points behind Red Bull in the constructors’ championship after eight races.

Red Bull have won the last four races and Max Verstappen is 18 points clear of seven times champion Hamilton, the sport’s most successful driver of all time.

Asked about Wolff’s comments at last weekend’s Styrian Grand Prix, when he said “we have stopped developing for this year because we believe next year is so important to get right,” Allison denied there was a contradiction.

“What Toto points out is that next year’s rules are a big and hairy affair and they demand a huge amount of our attention, so most of the focus of our factory has switched over to the performance discovery for next year,” he said.

“But that doesn’t mean that there aren’t things still in the food chain from prior to that focus switch.”

Allison said there was more to come on the power unit side and also some aerodynamic changes.

“And just a few things that are not quite as tidy as we would wish that we still have an opportunity to put right while this season is still very much alive and hot,” he added.

That will come as good news for Hamilton, who said on Sunday that he would love to have upgrades and improvements to make his car quicker.

The next race is the Austrian Grand Prix this weekend at the same Red Bull Ring.

Allison said Hamilton was also playing a huge role at the factory.

“He’s absolutely brilliant for us in these circumstances because he’s so focused on winning and on championships that his response to a situation like this is just to redouble his own contribution,” he said.


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