Hamilton ‘lost quite a bit of time’ with engine oscillation problem in qualifying

2022 Mexican Grand Prix

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Lewis Hamilton says the engine problem which struck in qualifying cost him “quite a bit of time”, after qualifying three-tenths of a second off pole position.

Having been quickest in Q1 and Q2, Hamilton fell to third in Q3 after his first lap time in the final session was deleted for exceeding track limits. Hamilton isn’t convinced he left the track. “I think we need to look deep into it because I don’t believe it’s the case,” he said, “but we’ll see.”

That left Hamilton at risk of starting last if he failed to complete a clean lap with his final run. “I think losing that first lap definitely made the last one very, very difficult,” said Hamilton. “I had to be very reserved on that last lap just to make sure that it was clean, because I was tenth up until that point. So unfortunately not able to push as hard as I’d have liked.”

He was also experiencing a problem with power delivery, telling race engineer Peter Bonnington “Got a drive-ability issue, man, exit of the last corner,” at the end of Q2.

“It started to appear in Q2,” Hamilton explained afterwards. “Then it was just every every run in Q3. So basically dropping out of power on exits of a corner.

“So I definitely think we were losing quite a bit of time I think out of the last corner and basically out most of the corners. I’m not really sure what happened. It felt like an ignition issue, but I’ll find out from the team.”

Although Hamilton believes there was “definitely a bit of performance left on the table” due to his engine problem, he believes the team are well set for Sunday’s race. “This is a great result, to be second and third. It’s not a bad position to start for tomorrow, and I hope that we can fix the engine problem for tomorrow.”

Hamilton’s Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff said his power unit developed “an oscillation” during qualifying. “Obviously that badly affects drive-ability and once you have it a second time it comes again, so it’s definitely affected his lap.”

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2022 Mexican 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...
Claire Cottingham
Claire has worked in motorsport for much of her career, covering a broad mix of championships including Formula One, Formula E, the BTCC, British...

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11 comments on “Hamilton ‘lost quite a bit of time’ with engine oscillation problem in qualifying”

  1. Always some excuse with this guy.

    1. Andy (@andyfromsandy)
      30th October 2022, 14:04

      Yeah. Most people would say it is a reason why something didn’t work out but this guy can only come up with excuses!

      1. When something goes well for SLH it must be the car, if something goes wrong it must SLH. If somebody says something positive about SLH than that person must be British and therefore biased.

        If Hamiltons engine is oscillating it must be an excuse, I can’t ever ever be anything besides an excuse.

        I love people, but sometimes people can make you want burn everything and restart the whole human project thing .

        1. Andy (@andyfromsandy)
          30th October 2022, 16:31


    2. Why would he lie about it? He said it on the radio. The bias against Hamilton is childish.

  2. I know how much it affected him, he’d be ahead of Russell.

  3. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
    30th October 2022, 14:06

    Hopefully it won’t affect the race today.

    1. Andy (@andyfromsandy)
      30th October 2022, 14:11

      Charles will also hope his engine problem gets fixed.

  4. It seems to me Mercedes have turned up the engine, kind of like what they did last year for those last 3 race. Here its an unknown quantity. They also will have their slim pod cooling solution to contend with if they have turned up the engine, then their water cooler’s ability to match the extra demands would be an unknown quantity. What a way to find out.

    It’s all or nothing. They’ll either get the victory or DNF. At the very least they’ll gather data for their last chance at a win in Brazil.
    It seems to me Hamilton is still in that mode as chief test driver.

    1. Can’t imagine their slim pod is going to cause Merc harm. It worked like a charm all year, and of course the cooling circumstances are more difficult in Mexico, but Merc should know how much they can be on the limit after all these races.

  5. That left Hamilton at risk of starting last if he failed to complete a clean lap with his final run

    Or 10th, because it was Q3 …

Comments are closed.