Wolff looks to Red Bull: 'Verstappen can follow in Hamilton's footsteps'

03-03-2021 10:43 | Updated: 03-03-2021 11:26
by GPblog.com
F1 News
Wolff looks to Red Bull: 'Verstappen can follow in Hamilton's footsteps'

With seven world titles in a row and regulations remaining pretty much the same, Mercedes is obviously the big favourite again for 2021. However, Toto Wolff also looks to Red Bull Racing, who he believes could be a major threat.

Since the hybrid era, Mercedes has been unbeatable in Formula 1. In 2014, this was mainly due to the engine, but in recent years the chassis has also proved to be miles ahead of the competition. Yet every year Wolff tries to shift the spotlight and refuses to assume the role of favourite.

Mercedes casts off favourites role

''We have respect for everyone. In recent years we have seen that Red Bull and Ferrari can compete for the title. In the last year with Honda, Red Bull will want to do very well, but you must not exclude teams like McLaren, Aston Martin and Renault either. They have big ambitions. If not for this year, then for 2022,'' Wolff told Sky Germany.

The Austrian also points to the improvement at Red Bull Racing with the arrival of Sergio Perez. ''He has a lot of experience with the Mercedes engine and will certainly bring that input to Honda. He won't be able to do much about the current performance of the engine because of the moment he entered the team, but that information will be very interesting for Honda.''

Red Bull the biggest competitor

Toto mentions a lot of other teams, but will know himself that there is one big challenger in 2021: Red Bull Racing. Max Verstappen's team was already hot on Mercedes' heels in 2020 and is entering the final year of its partnership with Honda. Together, they are pushing hard to close the partnership successfully, and that is putting pressure on Mercedes.

''They are clearly the number one competitor. They have the same resources at their disposal and with Max they have a driver who can follow in Hamilton's footsteps, and with Perez someone who can constantly score points. So I see Red Bull as the biggest competitor, although I don't want to write off the other contenders,'' concludes the Mercedes team boss.

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