Mercedes tip McLaren to join battle for F1 supremacy in 2020

Toto Wolff believes McLaren could inch towards the fight for race wins, and possibly even championships, in the 2020 Formula 1 season.

A settled set of regulations next year is expected to see Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull continue to come closer together in terms of performances, indeed the margins between their cars has shrunk dramatically over the course of the 2019 season.

McLaren have made huge strides across 2019, securing fourth place in the constructors’ championship, with Carlos Sainz taking the team’s first podium in more than five years at the Brazilian GP – something that has caught Wolff’s eye.

He said: “We have always defended the standpoint that by letting the regulations alone, performance convergence would happen – at least there’s a high probability that convergence happens rather than throwing the dice and introducing something new and I think we have seen that.

“It’s fair to say that there are three teams capable of winning races today and probably winning championships if things are being put together.

“McLaren has massively caught up, probably the steepest performance slope of all teams and will be there or thereabouts, in my opinion.

“So, yeah, I see this very much as being a much tougher season. I don’t think we are going to see the kind of 10 race wins or 12 race wins per team for next year any more – but obviously we will be trying everything to optimise our weaknesses and continue to perform well.”