- Lewis Hamilton has spoken following a disappointing season-opener race
- He finished the Bahrain Grand Prix in fifth position
- Hamilton said the Mercedes W14 isn’t the best car to drive
Lewis Hamilton has spoken following a disappointing season opener race, Bahrain Grand Prix where he finished fifth and admitted that the new W14 isn’t the best car.
Hamilton managed to finish fifth after overtaking fellow teammate George Russell and taking Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc’s place after his exit.
Still, he failed to advance past Fernando Alonso of Aston Martin who finished third. The British Mercedes driver said that he is his team’s biggest motivation and he keeps his face high up even when the odds seem stuck against him.
He said that Mercedes isn’t where it should be yet because the W14 is not the car they want but he has to remain optimistic for the sake of his team
“We know we are not where we need to be, and we know that this isn’t the right car. It is a difficult one. But I’ve just got to try and stay positive, keep my head up and keep pushing the guys. Keep trying to be a positive light for them and get the best points I can,” Motorsports reports.
At Bahrain, Mercedes struggled with tyre degradation which isn’t comforting at all for the first race of the year.
The seven-time Mercedes driver said that racing in Bahrain felt like 2022 and he told his team boss and engineers
He said that Mercedes engineers must add downforce to the car on the front to give it a proper thrust which is what they are after.
If done correctly, Hamilton will be in a position to compete with Max Verstappen of Red Bull who clinched his first grand prix victory for the year in Bahrain.
Meanwhile, Russell had earlier raised a design flaw with the W14 saying its mid-corner not being balanced isn’t much of a problem.
Russell feels that this design problem in the Mercedes W14 2022 challenger is not as serious as the purporising issues the W13 had in 2023.
The team engineers, according to Russell, have taken note of this problem and are optimistic that they will find a solution to it.
“I think it’s no secret when you’re watching the onboard videos that we are struggling a little bit with the balance, struggling a lot in the mid-corner. But I think it’s a balance that is probably easier to solve than what we had last year. So even though there’s still a limitation, let’s say it’s a good problem to have,” he told Motorsports.
In the 2022 pre-season testing held in Barcelona, the W13 was plagued by porpoising which was the case throughout the entire season.
Meanwhile, Hamilton disclosed that he hated driving the W13 in 2022. He says that he was sick and tired of the porpoising problems he experienced, particularly in the first half of the season. The engineering issues with this car denied him a championship title for the second year in a row.
Red Bull’s Max Verstappen sped to his second consecutive title and set the record for most victories in a season. Hamilton finished at a distant sixth after Carlos Sainz, George Russell, Sergio Perez, and Charles Leclerc.
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