Mercedes Formula 1 boss Toto Wolff says his squad is viewing this weekend’s Hungarian Grand Prix as a “chance to redeem ourselves” following a disappointing home race in Germany.

The German manufacturer endured a nightmare 200th grand prix at Hockenheim as Valtteri Bottas crashed out and Lewis Hamilton could only finish ninth in a chaotic, rain-affected race.

Mercedes admitted its decision-making amid difficult circumstances in Germany had not been good enough, but team principal Wolff is pleased to return to the race track immediately so the reigning world champion outfit can make up for its worst result of the year.

“We had a painful Sunday in Hockenheim. We made mistakes, took the wrong decisions and left Germany with only two points,” Wolff said.

“But we love Formula 1 for the challenges it throws at us as they present an opportunity to improve. On Sunday, we were united in our pain; on Monday, we were united in our determination to turn our weaknesses into strengths.

“We had a number of very open discussions about what went wrong and what steps we need to take to improve,” he added.

“I believe that one of the core strengths of our team is the way we handle defeat. We accept responsibility for mistakes so that we can learn and improve - and we will come back stronger from this.

“The positive is that the next race is only a few days away and that we have the chance to redeem ourselves in Budapest this weekend.”

The twisty nature of the Hungaroring had previously meant it was one of Mercedes’ weaker circuits, but a change in design philosophy with the team’s 2019 W10 challenger has seen it address its former slow-speed weakness, prompting optimism from Wolff.

“In recent years, the Hungaroring has been a challenging circuit for us - but we managed to win there last year and there are a number of reasons to believe our car could be more competitive there this year than in recent seasons,” he explained.

“Looking at our competition, Ferrari have been very strong on short circuits this year and we expect them to be competitive again in Budapest; Red Bull, too, have won two of the past three races with Max.

“But we haven't lost sight of the fact that we have come out on top in nine of the 11 races so far this year. And we are determined to fight tooth and nail this weekend to achieve another strong result.”

 

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