Max Verstappen took a jab at Mercedes after he effortlessly lapped Lewis Hamilton during the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix on Sunday, 24 April.
Verstappen and Hamilton went toe-to-toe last season. However, when asked about lapping his former rival on Friday, Verstappen remarked about the team’s pace this season.
When asked by a reporter whether it was “a nice moment passing the Mercedes to lap it?”, Verstappen said: “They’ve been slow all year, so for me it’s nothing exciting.”
Watch: Max Verstappen’s interview
Verstappen won the race ahead of Red Bull team-mate Sergio Perez to trim Charles Leclerc’s lead in the title race to 27 points, with Lando Norris finishing third for McLaren.
Russell, 24, competing in the same difficult ‘porpoising’ and under-performing Mercedes car as the 37-year-old seven-time champion, has now beaten Hamilton in each of the last three races.
W13 concept ‘simply doesn’t work’
The manufacturer’s battles continued this weekend at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix. In Fact, Toto Wolff said the car build for the 2022 season “simply doesn’t work”.
While other teams made enormous leaps – most notably Ferarri’s F1-75 – Mercedes have fallen behind its competition this year.
The W13 model has been beset by porpoising issues – a phenomenon when a vehicle bounces up and down on its suspension before reaching top speeds.
The blame seems to be placed on Mercedes’ unconventional ‘zero-pods’ design.
Mercedes unveiled the radical new sidepod-less W13 back in February 2022, ahead of the second pre-season tests in Bahrain.