Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Suzuka, 2017

Mercedes are “back to normal” at Suzuka – Hamilton

2017 Japanese Grand Prix

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Lewis Hamilton says Mercedes are in good shape after the first day of running at Suzuka having been off the pace in the previous two rounds.

“The car feels back to normal so I’m ready to race,” said the world championship leader. Hamilton was quickest in the wet second practice session and two-tenths off Vettel on a dry track in the morning session.

Pierre Gasly, Toro Rosso, Suzuka, 2017
Japanese GP practice in pictures
“It’s been an interesting day,” he said, “the car is feeling much better than it was in Malaysia.”

“I’m glad that we had the dry session for FP1. In FP2, there was a lot of rain, but it felt really important to go out and assess the track and see how the car was feeling as the car was not good in the wet in Malaysia.”

“The fans are pretty special here,” Hamilton added. “To be out there in the rain, waiting for us to go out through the whole of FP2. That’s also another reason I wanted to go out and at least give them a little bit of a show. So hopefully at least they got to see something as not many cars went out.”

Team mate Valtteri Bottas said the W08 “definitely feels better than a week ago.”

“My run with the soft tyres was good, but with the super-soft, I didn’t really gain any grip. So the main thing for me is to understand the super-soft performance. The long runs actually weren’t too bad, and hopefully we’ll see better weather tomorrow.”

2017 Japanese Grand Prix

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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  • 11 comments on “Mercedes are “back to normal” at Suzuka – Hamilton”

    1. Was that duck faster than Lewis in FP2? :P

      1. @krichelle What duck, LOL?

      2. No, the duck missed the chicane so it doesn’t count

        1. Duck: What Vettel should have yelled at Stroll.

    2. “The car feels back to normal so I’m ready to race,” said the world championship leader. Hamilton was quickest in the wet second practice session and two-tenths off Vettel on a dry track in the morning session”

      2 tenths but in cool morning temps. The real test will be in race i suppose.

    3. More bad news for VET. Man, this VET guy can’t get a break at all even now when he lost the champ…

      1. What are you moaning about he was 1st in the morning session?

      2. Why is it more bad news for Vet ? @mg1982

        He was fastest this morning on the harder tyre. Just because Hamilton feels better in the Mercedes doesn’t make it the quickest car this weekend. I still think Ferrari have the pace to win this weekend and possibly get pole.

        Just hearing Bottas has a 5 place grid drop too. That can only help Vettel as if the Mercedes does turn out to be much faster this weekend Vettel will already start in front of one.

        1. HAM not having any issues with the car and feeling comfortable means he will be confident enough to push when it matters. This wasn’t the case for the past 2 races so just compounds the Ferrari missed opportunities. VET needs a strong performance this weekend to let HAM know he’s still in the running.

          1. HAM did not feel comfortable in the car in the last 2 races?! I thought it was that Ferrari was the better car… at least this is what Mercedes/HAM fans told us.

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