Mercedes-Benz Head of Motorsport Toto Wolff admits that it will take time for the marque’s fortunes in the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters to improve, saying that “any hope of significant improvement in Oschersleben is a pipe dream”.
Mercedes endured a disastrous season-opener at the Hockenheimring, where none of its seven cars finished inside the top ten for the first time in the series’ history.
In the wake of the difficult start to the season, Mercedes parted company with technical director Gerhard Ungar as part of the shake-up intended to reinvigorate its performances.
Since the season opener, Wolff says the team have been working tirelessly to try to improve the marque’s AMG C-Coupés ahead of this weekend’s race in Oschersleben.
“In the days since the season’s opening race at Hockenheim, our team has worked unstintingly to go through this year’s first race weekend with a fine toothcomb,” explained Wolff. “The goal of these efforts is to significantly improve our performance for the second race at Oschersleben.
“We know that every single one of our drivers has what it takes to achieve top results and victories in the DTM. Now, we must give them the right tools for the job, so that they can do what is necessary out on the track.”
Wolff has ruled out any quick-fix to the current problems, stating that the manufacturer is aiming only for a slight improvement on the season-opener this weekend.
“We know that we are well down on the competition at the moment, but that deficit can only be reduced bit by bit, so any hope of a significant improvement in Oschersleben is a pipe dream,” cautioned Wolff. “The Oschersleben circuit is situated in an area where enthusiasm for motor sports has always been quite palpable. That makes us even more determined to produce a better result for the fans than two weeks ago at Hockenheim and show some appreciation for their terrific support.”
Paul di Resta, who returned to the DTM this year following a three-year stint in Formula One, says that he is looking for small, progressive improvements this weekend.
“I’ve often driven in the DTM at Oschersleben and even won my last race there from pole position back in 2010. I hope that’s a good omen for the second race of my comeback season,” said di Resta. “Unfortunately, Hockenheim didn’t go well for me, but now we want to set about changing things bit by bit, using our experience from the first race weekend of the season. We must stay focused and continue to work hard.”