Mercedes still eyeing Ferrari chase but would prefer 2022 F1 win

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Mercedes isn't giving up on beating Ferrari to second in the Constructors' Championship but a win would be more significant.

After starting the 2022 Formula 1 season fighting in the midfield, the Brackley-based outfit has emerged as the second-best team to Red Bull as the year draws to a close.

In fact, Lewis Hamilton could well have won the past two races, particularly in Mexico where a conservative strategy cost him versus Max Verstappen.

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But Mercedes has outscored Ferrari by 27 points over that period, reducing the gap to 40 points with two races plus a Sprint to come.

And asked what was the bigger wish between P2 and a race win, team boss Toto Wolff was clear.

“A win!” he stated, "that would be proof that our car is back in the fight whereas P2 could also be because others dropped the ball and you are scoring more points.

"P2 would definitely be a consolation because Ferrari had the fastest car at the beginning of the season, so finishing in front of them would be great.

“But like I said, that’s not our main priority. The main priority is to understand the car and have a fast car out there.”


But after the team's strong performance in Mexico, chief strategist James Vowles is cautious about setting expectations for Brazil this weekend.

“It’s really hard to tell before we go to an event but I don’t think we will quite enjoy the same level of competitiveness,” he said.

“It won’t be much different but it might be a slight step backwards and I certainly expect Ferrari to be closer than they were in Mexico.

"Yes, it’s a higher altitude than normal, I think it’s around 700 metres above sea level but it’s also a factor of what the track layout is and what downforce level people are at.

“As I mentioned previously we really function well on these high downforce circuits and that’s not what we have coming up in Brazil.”