Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Circuit de Catalunya, 2019

Hamilton relieved to win after “nightmare” Saturday

2019 Spanish Grand Prix

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Lewis Hamilton said he will renew his efforts to improve his single-lap pace after bouncing back from a “nightmare” Saturday to win the Spanish Grand Prix.

The Mercedes driver was beaten to pole position by team mate Valtteri Bottas for the second race in a row. However he demonstrated strong pace in the race as he clinched his third victory of the season.

“Yesterday was a bit of a nightmare,” said Hamilton after the race. “But race pace has generally been quite good for me. I’ve been really happy and comfortable generally in the races.

“When we went out to do the laps to the grid I wasn’t very happy with the balance still so I had to make some changes, had to alter my driving style a little bit but it worked well in the race scenario.

“I’m going to look into detail why it doesn’t work on a single lap and that may take some time. Normally with tyres I’m pretty good. I think that’s the weak area but it’s not that I can’t do it, I’ve just got to discover it and that’s what I’ll put some effort towards.”

Mercedes pulled further ahead of Ferrari in the championship after scoring its fifth consecutive one-two. Hamilton said he hopes their rivals are more competitive in the upcoming races.

“I prefer when they are in the mix with us,” he said. “I prefer the races where, for example Bahrain, they’re on the front row. I love that. Especially when we’re kind of intertwined where there’s a Mercedes and a Ferrari for example.

“The last couple of years that’s what we’ve had and from a driver’s point of view and a team’s point of view it’s much better when you’re competing with another team.

“When it becomes more internal it’s less exciting I would say, but it’s still massively challenging for the driver. We still have to deliver, it’s not a case of just rocking up and going out we still have to work very hard to extract everything from the car just as every other driver is extracting everything from their car.”

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Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
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 “Hamilton relieved to win after “nightmare” Saturday”

  1. Even Hamilton is feeling let down by Ferrari’s lip wibble of a challenge this season.

    1. @david-br Yes indeed, which speaks volumes.

    2. I think Hamilton is just worried about a repeat of the season where the team’s objective is to beat the other side of the garage rather than a different team.

      1. he doesnt want to win 4 races in a row with bottas right behind him then retire with a broken engine and see bottas winning and all the points advantage he got turn into dust in just one race.

      2. Agreed!

        With no challenge from without, Mercedes are forced into man managment mode.
        Hamilton would sooner a challenge from Ferrari which focused Mercedes around their best driver.

        The question now is which of the Mercedes drivers will bottle under the preassure?

    3. Excellent use of the word “wibble” @david-br

  2. Good way to shut up haters Lewis. He had such amazing race pace that towards the end of the first stint he was almost a second per lap quicker than Bottas who had no answers.
    Both team mates have some advantages at this stage of the season. Bottas has better understanding of the tyres and how to get the best out of them in a single lap. Lewis is ahead when it comes race starts and race pace. Both can improve as they better understand the W10.
    Great race by Max as well. Ferrari are lost and too busy with team orders.

  3. isaac (@invincibleisaac)
    12th May 2019, 21:44

    The race looked like it could potential get away from Hamilton when one camera shot showed he had a bad blister on his right rear. At that time he was losing about 1 second a lap to Bottas. Once Bottas made his second stop it was a no-brainer to pit Hamilton again, but had they left him (or both drivers) out for a 1 stop, would the result have been different? I also wonder if the safety car affected the top 6 result in the end.

    1. The SC probably affected the fastest lap challenged. Usually the top 10 would be strung out, with enough of a gap between them for one of them to pit, get fresh tires, and try for the extra points.

      The SC meant they were all grouped together so the only one with the fresh tire advantage was Hamilton.

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