Seven times World Champion Lewis Hamilton is still hopeful that Mercedes can secure a race win in 2022, in spite of Red Bull's evident dominance,highlighted by their 12 seasonal wins so far.
However, the British driver reckons that the incredible superiority shown so far by the Austrian team will make it extremely difficult to achieve the desired result.
Hamilton, whose record of winning at least a race in every year he has competed in Formula 1 is at risk, warned after the Italian GP that the full extent of championship leader Max Verstappen's car performance hasn't been displayed so far:
"We have to be realistic, that Red Bull is almost unbeatable. It's going to take some real doing to beat that car. Performance-wise they are fully ahead of everyone."
The British duo driving for Mercedes has improved a lot during the 2022 season, with Russell always in the Top 5 and several double podiums, but in order to reach P1, he added, it'll take not only a step in performance, but luck as well:
"We have not caught them, we don't have upgrades coming to overtake them. And so it's going to take some fortune going our way."
“And not impossible, because we could have potentially beaten them in Budapest. But he [Verstappen] is generally chilled at the front, so you never know their true pace. So we'll see."
Mercedes's Team Principal Toto Wolff shares Hamilton's belief that the W13 has the potential to win a race before the end of the season:"I think it would be awesome if we could win a race on merit, without any grid penalties."
"I think if you would have asked us after Spa I would have said impossible, then after Zandvoort, we nearly won that one. And here it was not good," said the Austrian after Monza's double top 5 finish.
Wolff remarked the importance that getting a win in such a difficult year for the German team would hold as a morale boost for everyone:
"I think that must be the target. We don't want to end up the season with no race win, even if the sails are absolutely set for 2023. It would be quite a nice thing in a difficult season for all our people."