Lewis Hamilton says he’s getting used to life at Mercedes – starting with his steering wheel.
“It is a bit like starting all over again,” he said when speaking to the media in Jerez today. “I remember in 2006, going into 2007, just having to learn all these new controls, all these different procedures that you had to do. It’s all fresh and new again in this car.
“On the steering wheel I think I’ve got at least double the amount of buttons and switches that I had on my previous one. I’ve already got rid of quite a few of the buttons as soon as I got here.
“But I still have way more than I had before. And the engineers and just the way the team works is different to what I’ve experienced so it is like starting from fresh.”
Hamilton got behind the wheel of the car for the first time today and will have his first proper run in testing on Wednesday.
He will get just six days in the car before the first race of the season at Melbourne. “I’ll maximise every second that I have in the car,” he said.
“Even just now I got out of the car and made some notes in a little notepad. Just every second I do get in the car, there’s so much going on and there’s so many things you comment about.
“Whether it be the ride of the car to the pit stop lights or the buttons on the steering wheel. There’s so much to think about. Or just the way they speak to you, the way that they refer to certain things. They keep saying things I’m not familiar with, it’s all new procedures.”
Hamilton admitted it felt strange to arrive at the track and drive past the McLaren motorhome: “It definitely was”.
“I got here last night and as I drove in normally we stop a little bit further up the paddock and, yeah, just driving past my normal motorhome and buses it was very strange to drive past.
“Normally I’m looking out for them and I had no idea where this team was. And, yeah, putting on a different suit… I don’t know, it doesn’t feel a huge difference but of course when we were unveiling the car I really started to realise this is a massive difference to what I revealed before.”
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