Schumacher won five F1 titles in a row between 2000 and 2004 but Ferrari’s reign ended abruptly when the legendary driver, Ross Brawn and Jean Todt all left – today, the team hasn’t had a drivers’ champion in 15 seasons.
Mercedes reigned similarly with seven drivers’ titles in a row (six for Hamilton) but, after Red Bull’s Max Verstappen won back-to-back championships, Wolff wants to arrest their decline quickly.
“Of course we are talking about it,” Wolff said. “We are analysing: ‘What are the reasons the teams that dominated in the past suddenly lost performance?’
“You can see with Ferrari, they lost the whole top leadership and a key driver. I think that’s something you can trace back.
“With Red Bull, it was a fundamental situation that the power unit regulation changed upside down. So fundamental parameters changed.
“We are looking at that and thinking: ‘We had better be careful’.
“A season has gone by in a heartbeat and we can’t let it happen to look back at the end of next season and the one after, saying: ‘That’s bitter’.”
Wolff wants Mercedes to “avoid the mistakes” and added: “We have the same organisation, the same capability, the same funding. The other pillars are still in place.”
Hamilton did not win a single race in 2022 for the first season in his esteemed career. He is locked on seven titles, joint all-time highest with Schumacher, but aged 37 he must overhaul Verstappen to claim an eighth.
He finished sixth in the F1 standings, his worst-ever result.
“We are 100 per cent sure that this was a year that was necessary for us to re-energise and re-motivate the team,” Wolff said.
“This has again brought us down to the ground, made us appreciate how you win and also understand how difficult it is to recover.
“We’ve started the 100m sprint 10m behind everyone. So we’ve just got to run faster. This organisation has all that is needed to run faster.
“There’s no fear, but we need to be sharp.
“I’m a glass half-empty man. I’m not sure at all we can bounce back to a position where we can fight for championships.
“You need to acknowledge that the competition is strong but we will do everything in our power to set our objectives and try to beat them.”