The Silver Arrows have had a testing year by their high standards, with the new regulations throwing them slightly off of the ultimate pace.
Indeed, it’s been strange seeing them unable to fight for victory for the duration of the year so far, with Lewis Hamilton yet to stand on the top step this season and George Russell also still searching for that first elusive Grand Prix victory.
Both, though, will feel encouraged enough by the better results we have seen from them in more recent races, with Russell on pole in Hungary and both men on the podium come the chequered flag at the Hungaroring.
Indeed, Alesi has been pleased with the improvement of the W13, telling Give Me Sport:
“It’s easy for me to say but everybody was shocked by [their start.]
“When they presented the car in Bahrain everybody said ‘oh my God, they have made something very special and they’re going to be untouchable.’
“But lap after lap they found out the car was nowhere. And to see Lewis Hamilton driving a car like that was sometimes embarrassing because Lewis is a seven-time world champion.
“But to see his capacity to still improve the car, that was impressive. In Hungary, it was fantastic to see George on pole position and Lewis fighting towards the front.”
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Can they win a Grand Prix before this season is out, though? Alesi isn’t so sure and believes they’ll need help from things like reliability issues for others or the weather to beat Red Bull and Ferrari to P1:
“By experience when a car is born with problems, you’re not able to fix it.
“You can make a compromise but a compromise in Formula 1 doesn’t work, you know. So I don’t really believe they are able to be a winning team winning Grands Prix before the end of the championship under normal circumstances.”
Of course, Mercedes will be striving to achieve that first race win of the season as soon as possible after the summer break, with a triple-header coming up to kick off proceedings.
The 2022 Formula 1 world championship resumes with the Belgian Grand Prix on Aug 26-28.