French GP: Mercedes can compete with Crimson Bull and Ferrari, says Anthony Davidson

Anthony Davidson

Professional analyst

The French Grand Prix could also be Mercedes’ greatest probability of successful this season; watch this weekend’s French GP with all classes stay on Sky Sports activities F1; full schedule on the backside of the article – qualifying on Saturday at 15:00, competitors on Sunday at 14:00

Final up to date: 20/07/22 13:08


Anthony Davidson believes Mercedes ought to have the tempo to problem Crimson Bull and Ferrari for victory at this weekend’s French GP.

After a vastly disappointing begin to the season following the introduction of recent design guidelines for the 2022 marketing campaign, the eight-time reigning constructors’ champions have lastly begun to shut the hole on their rivals.

The Silver Arrows managed simply three podiums within the first seven races of the season however have now secured 4 in a row, with seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton third in every of the final three rounds.

In solely a kind of three races, the British GP, did Hamilton have the tempo to problem for victory, and with Marseille’s Circuit Paul Ricard having related traits to Silverstone, there may be optimism that Mercedes may have the primary probability. win this season.

Former F1 driver Davidson spoke Sky Sports activities Information: “It is definitely a great distance off, however I believe if there was any circuit to decide on this season, it might be Silverstone and Paul Ricard, the place Mercedes would have the possibility to combine it up with the highest two groups – Crimson Bull and Ferrari – at an actual tempo.

Charles Leclerc, the best of the epic Austrian Grand Prix action, took the win.

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Charles Leclerc, one of the best of the epic Austrian Grand Prix motion, took the win.

Charles Leclerc, one of the best of the epic Austrian Grand Prix motion, took the win.

“Coming from the again of Austria the place that they had a very good stable race – sadly qualifying did not fairly go effectively with each vehicles crashing out – however the tempo felt fairly good. Not on the identical degree as Crimson Bull and Ferrari, however historically it has been a reasonably weak spherical for them .

“For those who take a look at what we noticed at Silverstone, there was actually robust race tempo, Paul Ricard – a pleasant clean circuit that ought to go well with the automobile, good grip as effectively, nice tire breakdown, all these components that come collectively for Mercedes ought to imply below rights that the automobile ought to be in its joyful place.”

“Hamilton finds his stride”

Hamilton’s three consecutive podiums have seen him shut the factors hole with team-mate George Russell, who has made a really spectacular begin to his debut marketing campaign with Mercedes.

Russell completed forward of Hamilton in seven of the primary eight races, however the hole between them has narrowed to 19 factors going into spherical 12 of the championship.

Lewis Hamilton was proud of Mercedes' efforts to finish third in Austria after a difficult start to the weekend.

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Lewis Hamilton was happy with Mercedes’ efforts to complete third in Austria after a tough begin to the weekend.

Lewis Hamilton was happy with Mercedes’ efforts to complete third in Austria after a tough begin to the weekend.

Davidson has been impressed with Russell’s performances however believes an enhancing Mercedes will deliver out one of the best in Hamilton.

“George is having an excellent season to date, only a few hiccups however that is what you anticipate in your first season within the high workforce,” Davidson stated. “There’s lots of strain on George and he is studying from a grasp, is not he? What a privileged place for George.

“I anticipated him to have uncooked tempo immediately. We noticed him all the time shine at Williams, particularly in qualifying. He was labeled as Mr. Saturday for some time, I believe that label is gone now as a result of he’ll show himself in time. Race days.

George Russell was left frustrated after a first-lap collision with Sergio Perez resulted in a five-second time penalty and damage to his car at the Austrian GP.

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George Russell was left annoyed after a first-lap collision with Sergio Perez resulted in a five-second time penalty and injury to his automobile on the Austrian GP.

George Russell was left annoyed after a first-lap collision with Sergio Perez resulted in a five-second time penalty and injury to his automobile on the Austrian GP.

“I believe it is positively raised an eyebrow on Lewis’ half, seeing George’s method to this season and the way he is tailored so effectively to those new vehicles. However now that the automobile has turn into extra aware of the automobile that Lewis drove final yr and the yr earlier than drove in, I really feel prefer it’s beginning to run a bit extra now they usually’re not attempting as many drastic modifications to the automobile.

“I really feel like now they’re narrowing down the place they must be and never going out of the setup window as a lot. I really feel like Lewis is beginning to hit his stride extra now and he is beginning within the final couple of races to essentially present that. His high quality once more .

De Vries replaces Hamilton in FP1

Hamilton has one much less session to fine-tune his efficiency at Le Castellet after it was confirmed that Nyck de Vries will sit out Friday’s opening observe session.

The 27-year-old Dutch driver will make his second FP1 outing of the season, taking the wheel of Alex Alboni’s Williams on the Spanish GP in Might.

Mercedes stated Hamilton selected this weekend to finish considered one of its two youth driver classes, which all groups should maintain in the course of the season.

Mercedes workforce principal Toto Wolff stated: “Nyck will substitute Lewis within the first observe classes this weekend, as a part of the coaching put aside for the younger drivers this yr. So we’re wanting ahead to seeing how he goes.”

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