Hamilton lauds Mercedes courage to change

Lewis Hamilton says Mercedes has shown courage not to remain stuck in its ways and to make change

Lewis Hamilton says Mercedes has shown courage not to remain stuck in its ways and to make change

Lewis Hamilton claims he is being inspired by the open-mindedness of Mercedes to change and not remain set in its ways as it attempts to find a route back to the top in F1.

From an apparent position of despair for the season ahead prior to the first grand prix in Bahrain, Mercedes swiftly recognised what was required to turn the W14 into a competitive car to potentially challenge Red Bull’s current dominance.

The understanding is there will be significant developments on the car from the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix onwards, with the race at Imola taking place on May 21.

How quickly Mercedes can deliver a car Hamilton thoroughly enjoys driving again remains to be seen, but at least after being left disappointed by the team’s initial reluctance to listen to his opinions, he can now see light at the end of the tunnel.

“We are still a world championship-winning team,” said Hamilton. “We have amazing people who have been with us on that journey.

“We always have to hold ourselves accountable, every one of us, and we all need to look at how we go about things and how we can do it better.

“There’s not a single person in the team that thinks they have done everything right and that they couldn’t do things better.

“If you have a group of people who are stuck in their ways and don’t change, that’s where you stay in the area of being non-competitive.

“But these guys and women are very open-minded and that’s inspiring for me to see the courage they have and I know we will get there.”

Hamilton demands stronger Mercedes rear end

Mercedes certainly showed signs of improvement in the last race in Australia, with George Russell and Hamilton qualifying second and third behind Red Bull’s Max Verstappen.

Despite superb starts from both British drivers that allowed them to run one-two for the opening few laps, Verstappen still went on to control the race and take the chequered flag ahead of Hamilton.

Hamilton has already expressed that the major concern for him regarding the W14 is its lack of rear end, allied to the fact the cockpit is closer to the front wheels compared to those of Mercedes’ rivals, especially Red Bull.

At least compared to the W13 of last year, Hamilton and Russell are not suffering bone-jarring rides.

“We had bouncing until the very last lap of the last race (of last year),” added Hamilton. “The race where we had the least amount of bouncing was probably Brazil (where Russell spearheaded a Mercedes one-two).

“The balance was pretty much the same through the whole year. It was a massively front-ended car, very little rear end, very pointy from the moment you turned in. Very unpredictable. Massively unpredictable.

“In this year’s car, we don’t have the bouncing. There are small remnants of it every now and then. We still have, generally, a very strong front and not as good a rear as we hoped to have.

“If you look at Red Bull and the places they can get on the power earlier and the speed they can carry through corners, it’s got to have a much stronger rear end.

“But this year’s car is slightly more predictable and nicer to drive, particularly because we don’t have the bouncing.”

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