Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Circuit de Catalunya, 2018

Hamilton: Emphatic Spain win could be a “turning point”

2018 Spanish Grand Prix

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Lewis Hamilton believes his emphatic win in the Spanish Grand Prix could be a turning point for his season.

The Mercedes driver seldom looked threatened as he converted pole position into victory in Spain, taking the chequered flag 20 seconds ahead of team mate Valtteri Bottas.

“I think it’s obviously a little bit early to say but I would like to hope that it could be part of a turning point,” said Hamilton.

“Race by race we’re understanding the tyres more, which is a big battle for everyone. We could just as easily go to the next race and struggle getting our tyres working and be nowhere. So, it’s a little bit early to say.”

Before the weekend began Hamilton felt the team were further behind with their car than they had been at the same track 12 months ago. But their strong weekend has given him extra confidence.

“We do, after the five races, now have a much, much better understanding of the car [and] of what we need to do to get the car to be working.

“But we still have learning to do, improvements to be made. We still need to add performance to the car throughout the year, so that’s what we’re going to be continuing to be working on.”

Mercedes scored their first one=two of the season in Spain. Valtteri Bottas was running third behind Sebastian Vettel when the Ferrari driver lost the position by making a second pit stop.

However Bottas believes he was quick enough to beat Vettel in a straight fight. “It felt like I had a lot more pace all through the race,” he said.

“As everyone knows it’s extremely difficult to overtake here and I could always put pressure on him when we needed – but you need such a big gap between the pace to get through.

“We were waiting for the next opportunity as we missed the first opportunity during the first pit stop, waiting for the second pit stop if we could have done anything. I think there would have been a chance and I think with the strong car we had today, there would have been opportunities later.”

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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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  • 8 comments on “Hamilton: Emphatic Spain win could be a “turning point””

    1. Regardless of whether you think Ferrari are ahead or Mercedes, it seems that this season the deciding factor more than last will be …..tyres…

      There will be mind games back and forth and countless discussions on here about which car is fastest, who is pretending they are behind. But, in reality, which ever of those cars gets the tyres to work, regardless of the minor improvements with aero, will be in the literal driving seat.

      It seems that the tyres have once again become super sensitive, random operating window race makers…or race destroyers…..

      1. Mate, you hit the nail there. Whoever can get the tyres in the opersting window will win this.

      2. @krichelle @mach1 Still though the winners have only been the strategy group (iirc) Big 3 (if I just jinxed it leading to a different winner next time around that’ll be welcome though)

    2. I love Brundle and Crofty as a commentary team, but my God I wish they’d lay off the Hamilton fanboyism!!

      Brundle said during the race that it’s a Happy Lewis day where he is unbeatable. My God! But to some extent I guess he’s right – cause Hamilton is only happy when he has far superior machinery, and today he clearly had that!

      1. Brundle said during the race that it’s a Happy Lewis day where he is unbeatable

        @nick101 I wouldn’t call that fanboyism since I don’t think fanboys would accept the idea of their hero-of-sorts having imperfect days.

    3. Reliability! It is very worrisome that Kimi went thru TWO power units this weekend. Yes, I know that Ferrari may be able to reuse some of the components without penalty, but they must be very worried as well. Did they push for more power a little too hard?

      1. …or was the engine failures the results of Ferrari having to modify their ‘oil burners’?

        We have still not had an official word on this situation. All we hear is how Ferrari will take their toys and leave if they don’t have things their own way.

        1. That’s a point. Wasn’t it from this race that the revised restrictions came into play. The various engine issues Ferrari suffered during the trio of asian races in the second half of last year were potentially a result of them having to ‘tune up’ the engines -and thus increase wear- to make up for the oil burning restrictions that came in last year just before Monza.

          If it is related to that, then Ferrari may be set for a few engine penalties come the second half of the year. Maybe sooner. Kimi is only one engine change away. Vettel two?

          I watched the race live, but skipped most of the build up. Were the Ferrari’s still coming out of the garages in a thick cloud of smoke?

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