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2024 Formula 1: Who are the drivers and team principal for Mercedes F1?

Mercedes lost F1 dominance to Red Bull in the last decade. Toto Wolff and his drivers, Hamilton and Russell, will aim to reclaim the title in 2024.

British Formula One driver George Russell of Mercedes-AMG Petronas steers his car during the pre-season testing for the 2024 Formula One season at the Bahrain International Circuit.

The year 2023 was a difficult season for Mercedes as they had to take a back seat to Red Bull after having dominated the Formula 1 circuit for the past decade. The team struggled with their performance, and despite Hamilton looking closer to his best, George Russell struggled more. Mercedes admitted their faults immediately during the first race weekend, but they were no closer to Red Bull. For the first time since 2011, there wasn’t a victory for Mercedes.

A season to forget

Mercedes had won eight consecutive constructors’ championships from 2014 to 2021 before dropping to third and second place in the last two seasons - disappointing finishes for the once-unbeatable team.

The seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton finished the year in third place, his poorest showing since he started racing in Formula 1. His teammate George Russell finished the year in eighth place, a second-season syndrome year for him. However, the lessons Russell learned will hold him well in the future. Russell ended the season on a high note with a second podium of the year in Abu Dhabi. This is something he can build on in an otherwise disappointing season. Hamilton scored 234 points and placed third, while Russell scored 175 points and placed eighth.

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With the setbacks and design issues of 2023 behind them, Mercedes looks forward to a better-performing car and a more successful campaign this year. The 2024 F1 season will begin this weekend in Bahrain, and after pre-season testing, the team hopes the new W15 will give them the results they need to reclaim their place at the top of the table.

Toto Wolff

Team principal Toto Wolff has been with the Mercedes organization for eleven years, moving from the Williams Formula One Team in 2013. The former race car driver is the Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team’s CEO and owns a third of it. The team has thrived under his leadership, winning 5% of the races they’ve joined since he took over.

Wolff has expressed his cautious optimism regarding Mercedes’ prospects for the 2024 season, emphasizing that success in the sport cannot be achieved without hard work. Last week, the Silver Arrows revealed their new car, the W15, following an eventful off-season that included Lewis Hamilton’s announcement of his departure from the team at the end of the year to join Ferrari.

Lewis Hamilton

The 2023 F1 season was a roller coaster ride for the seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton. Although his Mercedes car struggled to keep up with the pace of the front runners, Red Bull, Hamilton showcased his driving talent. He took the W14 to the edge of its capability, and his driving remained as sharp as ever, reflecting his relentless determination to fight at the front of the pack.

Despite Hamilton’s drought in race wins, he continued to put on a fantastic show for the second season in a row and fought right up to P3 in the championship. At times, he nearly beat out Red Bull’s Sergio Perez for P2.

George Russell

Russell scored 175 points over the season, which was 100 points fewer than his score from last year. He finished in P8 in the drivers’ championship, four places lower than the previous year and five places behind Hamilton. Russell achieved two podium finishes in Spain and Abu Dhabi, six less than his performance in the last season.

The British driver joined Mercedes in 2022 as a replacement for Valtteri Bottas. Russell displayed an impressive performance despite the team’s struggles with the new car. However, he referred to his 2023 Formula One campaign as a “disaster” due to the missed chances he faced. Nonetheless, Mercedes has shown faith in him by extending his contract until the end of the 2025 season.