Schumacher: Mercedes may struggle on long Canadian straights, but will work hard regardless

Michael Schumacher is expecting a respectable performance from Mercedes GP in next weekend’s Canadian Grand Prix, but is wary that the circuit’s long straights may hamper the team’s outright pace.

So far this season the W01 has struggled to match the front runners in terms of straight line speed. Consequently, the layout of the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, with its long straights and hard braking areas, may hinder the Brackley-based team.

Despite this, Schumacher is looking forward to returning to Montreal – a race which he has won a record seven times.

“Canada is definitely one of the places on the Formula One calendar which everyone is keen to visit, myself included of course.” Schumacher said in his team’s Canadian Grand Prix preview. “I have always had nice weekends in Montreal and enjoyed flying over to North America.”

“I will combine this trip with some days off and I am sure that once I enter the paddock, I will very much be looking forward to starting the race weekend.

However, team-mate Nico Rosberg believes that Mercedes will be a force to be reckoned with in Canada – despite team principal Ross Brawn admitting that the team had to yet to master its F-duct system.

“The Circuit Gilles Villeneuve is all about top speed so we have worked very hard on this, especially as we know that we are not right at the top in that area.” he said. “However I am convinced that we will be able to get the best out of our package.”

“Montreal is a great race venue and I always like to get there a few days early to get used to the time difference and have the chance to relax. The city really comes alive for the Grand Prix weekend and the atmosphere is fantastic so I’m pleased that we’re heading back there again this season.

“The circuit is technically challenging and fun to drive with the very long straight combined with short and slow corners. Our Mercedes-Benz engine will certainly be a big help on the main straight.

“We will have some further upgrades for the race weekend and the fact that the circuit characteristics are quite different from Istanbul Park makes me go there with high hopes. I think we might just put in a great result.”