Mercedes this morning announced a “multi-year” extension to its deal with Malaysian oil and fuel supplier Petronas, continuing a partnership that started in 2010.
Announcing the new deal, Head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport Toto Wolff said that the team’s dominance so far in 2014 can in no small part be attributed to fuel.
“It’s not just a sponsorship,” he said. “The partnership has been a major part of our on-track performance this year.”
This year’s power unit regulations, which accent efficiency, have led to a quite battle for supremacy among F1’s fuel suppliers, with improvements in the blend of components within fuels, including density, octane index and volatility, leading to significant gains in performance.
In Barcelona, for instance, Red Bull motorsport adviser Helmut Marko admitted that a new fuel from supplier Total was expected to yield a performance gain of two to three tenths of a second per laps. Ferrari, too, experienced a boost from a changed fuel in China, where Fernando Alonso claimed his first podium finish of the year. Lotus have already announced that it will race with a new Total blend here in Monaco.