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Toto Wolff

Wolff challenges Mercedes: 'I don't want to wait until 2026 to catch Red Bull'

The team is facing a huge task to catch and pass Red Bull - with Toto Wolff keen to ensure it does not take until the rules reset in 2026.

Red Bull Mercedes
To news overview © XPBimages

Toto Wolff has challenged Mercedes to ensure it does not take until the Formula 1 rules reset in 2026 to be able to challenge Red Bull.

In 2023, Red Bull won 21 of 22 races, scoring 860 points in the championship as Mercedes went winless for the first time since 2011, scoring just 409 points as it finished second.

The team had doubled down with its zero sidepod concept, but abandoned this for a more conventional design, which will be used as a base for the 2024 W15 machine.

Mercedes is one of a clutch of teams including Ferrari, McLaren and Aston Martin who have hopes of carving into Red Bull's advantage, with the Team Principal keen to ensure 2024 and 2025 are not effective write-offs.

Wolff on catching Red Bull

"The numbers that we are seeing are strong, Wolff told media including RacingNews365 when asked if F1 could 'survive' a second straight season of the dominance Red Bull showed in 2023.

"We are growing on social media, we see that races are packed and sold out, but as a matter of fact, it is all around the spectacle, and if the spectacle is not good, our fans are going to follow us less.

"What I always say is that I like the honesty in that the spectacle always follows the sport, and the sport is a meritocracy.

"Whoever is doing the best job wins, and if somebody is doing a much better job, then they win [21] races, and you can't stop that.

"Us, Ferrari and all the other teams have to do a better job to compete with Red Bull and if we can't change anything, then people are going to say [before the race]: 'Well I know the result.'

"It happened to us with Lewis many years ago, but you've just got to do a better job. I don't want to wait until 2026."

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