After the strong form Red Bull has shown in the first part of the season winning 6 of the 11 races we had this season so far, Mercedes thought they would use its maximum downforce car configuration at the Hungarian GP as the circuit on paper looked to benefit the RB16B.
Andrew Shovlin, Mercedes' Trackside engineering director, said:
“We thought this is a circuit that should suit them [Red Bull].”
“The other thing that always worries us when we come to a max downforce circuit is that we’re frequently running around on our max downforce wing and then they bring it out for the Monacos and for this place.”
“But maybe they couldn’t balance that. They went away from it on Saturday and for us it seems odd that you would ever run anything other than your biggest rear wing here.”
“We don’t profess to know why they’re taking decisions on that car, but it could be that they were just struggling to get enough front end in it, on the big wing, and they dropped down onto the smaller one.”
Mercedes lost the championship lead to Red Bull at the Monaco GP in May and regained it due to the results at Silverstone and Hungarian GP. The german team now has the lead in the Constructors' Championship by 12 points, while Hamilton is leading the Drivers' Championship by 8 points.
“It’s something we need to look at over the next few days.”
“We’re down to sort of pretty small developments now to be honest.
“We did have the update kit in Silverstone and that does look like it’s given us some useful performance. But then the car was working well in terms of where it was maintaining its tyre temperatures and we had quite a nice balance with it.”
“But to be honest, we’re surprised by it ourselves. I mean it's a pleasant surprise, but we were surprised to have had that margin to pole for instance.”