Wolff stresses importance of Chinese GP: 'That's why we need to be here'

F1 News

toto wolff looks ahead to the grand prix of china
16 April at 10:00

Toto Wolff is not to be envied at the moment. The Mercedes team principal had hoped to be a serious contender for Grand Prix wins again in '24, but in reality, reaching the top five every race is already a hefty challenge. However, ahead of the Chinese Grand Prix, the Austrian stresses that progress is indeed being made.

Perhaps there are opportunities for Mercedes in Shanghai, where the team grabbed a one-two with Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas in '19 - the last time it raced there. That Formula 1 will return to the Asian country is something Wolff considers "an important moment for the sport". "As the world's largest automotive market and second biggest economy, China is crucial to the sport's global footprint," he stated.

"The growth of F1 in recent years has been positive and China is a key market in which to continue this progress. We are looking forward to racing in Shanghai for the first time in five years and bringing F1 back to the Chinese fans. With a sell-out crowd expected, I am sure it will be a fantastic event," Wolff added

Wolff sees many unknown factors in China

According to Wolff, moreover, an interesting weekend awaits. "With new cars, new tyres, and changes to the track surface since we last raced in China, there will be plenty of unknowns. We have the first Sprint weekend of the year too and that brings its own challenges. The changes to the format, including a second parc fermé, will be an improvement to the rhythm of the weekend - and the single hour of practice still puts pressure on to make correct decisions with imperfect information. We are looking forward to that test, though."

The team boss also pointed out that Mercedes are making strides: "The headline results didn't necessarily show it, but we made solid progress with our car in Japan. We are looking forward to building on that this weekend.."