Mike Elliott, the proponent of Mercedes‘ vertical sidepod design, has been let go by the F1 crew.
Whereas not a headline-grabbing departure, it’s a important transfer with solely three races remaining within the 2023 Components 1 season.
Elliott‘s departure marks the tip of a chapter in Mercedes‘ Components 1 journey, throughout which he performed a pivotal function in each the crew’s success and its latest struggles.
Elliott joined the Mercedes crew in 2012 and initially served because the director of aerodynamics.
He was instrumental within the crew’s success through the hybrid period, contributing to seven consecutive drivers’ championships (from 2014 to 2020) and eight consecutive constructors’ championships.
A failed idea at Mercedes
Nevertheless, their dominance was disrupted in 2021 when Max Verstappen clinched the championship in an exciting finale in Abu Dhabi.
The downfall for Elliott got here with the introduction of latest technical laws. The crew adopted a problematic idea involving sidepods with zero spacing.
When the W13 automotive utilizing this design idea underperformed, it raised questions on why the crew continued with the identical method for the W14.
This resolution was reportedly influenced by Elliott. The consequence was clear, as Mercedes struggled, whereas Crimson Bull and Verstappen soared forward, resulting in a notable lack of victories.
Two years of struggles
Over the past two years, Mercedes managed to safe only one race win.
In Brazil, the place George Russell gained final season, the crew initiated a change, returning to conventional sidepods that allowed for improved efficiency.
The announcement of Elliott‘s departure coincided with the transformation of his function.
He was reassigned to the event technique division, whereas James Allison was reinstated in his earlier place.
The shift represented a demotion, marking the crew’s willpower to handle the problems that had arisen beneath Elliott‘s management.
Elliott‘s legacy shall be a blended one. Whereas he performed a vital function in Mercedes‘ earlier success, his persistence with the ill-fated sidepod idea, regardless of clear underperformance, left a mark on the crew’s latest struggles.
The choice to half methods with Elliott was inevitable, as Mercedes aimed to reclaim its aggressive edge and keep away from any additional downturn in efficiency.
Farewell assertion from Elliott
In his farewell assertion, Elliott expressed his satisfaction in contributing to Mercedes‘ journey from a gaggle of people aiming to win races to a crew attaining a number of constructors’ championships.
“It has been one of many nice privileges of my profession to be a part of this Mercedes crew,” he famous.
“Throughout my time, I’ve seen it develop from a gaggle of individuals pulling collectively to win races, then a primary championship, to successful a report eight consecutive constructors’ championships – and I’m proud to have made my contribution to that journey.”