Formula One drivers and team principals have been making comments ahead of the new season, which is set to begin on March 20 in Bahrain.
Lando Norris, who will be competing for McLaren, emphasized that all drivers in Formula One are there for a reason and face high expectations from themselves and others. He expressed confidence that newcomer Oscar Piastri, who will be joining the sport this year, will be able to live up to those expectations.
Meanwhile, Mercedes driver George Russell criticized the limited amount of testing time ahead of the season, likening it to a tennis player preparing for a major tournament with only a day and a half of training.
Alpine driver Fernando Alonso echoed Russell’s concerns, saying that he will not be fully ready for the first race in Jeddah and possibly even the Australian Grand Prix due to limited training time.
In other news, the relationship between drivers Esteban Ocon and Pierre Gasly appears to have improved, according to Alpine team principal Otmar Szafnauer.
However, Haas team principal Guenther Steiner revealed that his team was unable to afford Daniel Ricciardo’s salary demands, which reportedly included a minimum of ten million dollars.
Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff discussed his ongoing talks with seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton, saying that negotiations have been going smoothly and largely involve small adjustments to contract language.
Finally, retired world champion Jenson Button expressed admiration for Mercedes’ new car, calling it “the most beautiful car” on the grid. Hamilton also praised the car’s strong race pace and reliability as key factors for the team’s success in the upcoming season.