Horner expecting a competitive Mercedes at French Grand Prix
Red Bulls F1 boss Christian Horner believes Mercedes is now on par in the hunt at the upcoming French Grand Prix after constant strong results in recent races.
After struggling in the first half of the 2022 season with excessive porpoising and bouncing affecting performance to compete, Mercedes has had stable growth in recent races.
Lewis Hamilton scored his third consecutive podium in the Austrian GP on a circuit that was thought to be harsh on Mercedes cars less than Silverstone. His teammate George Russell followed him home for fourth, after being eliminated during a start crash in Britain.
Both Hamilton and Russell were set for a strong qualifying result in Austria as well, until they both crashed in Q3.
Red Bull chief Christian Horner acknowledged that Mercedes will continue to be a threat at next week's French Grand Prix as it appears to have fixed its bouncing issues.
"We'll expect them to be quick in [Paul] Ricard," Horner said.
"They're showing flashes of being there or thereabouts. The last two races have been pretty decent for them and there's been no sign I think of any porpoising at all, so they seem to be slowly bringing themselves back into the game."
But Mercedes may have lost too much ground in the first part of 2022 already, for a serious title challenge, trailing leading Red Bull by 122 points. But at 237 points the British team is not miles away from Ferrari in second, trailing them by 66 points.
"I think they'll be a contender," he reckoned.
"They keep consistently scoring points. I'm not sure how far off they are in the constructors' or drivers' [championships] at the moment, but you know, sometimes having more cars in play is a good thing. Sometimes it might be a bad thing.
"But I think for the fans it is great to have six cars, competing for victories."
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