Lewis Hamilton says Mercedes are making massive improvements to how they operate as a team as they strive to get on terms with their dominant rivals Red Bull.
“You’re always digging as far as you can without depleting yourself, naturally, and I think everyone in the team is giving absolutely everything too,” said Hamilton in response to a question from RaceFans. “That’s time away from their families, there’s times where these guys are working seven days a week. These guys are flat out so I’m trying to make sure that I’m matching their excellence.”
“But also I’m just being mindful of – I think in the past it was more about the destination rather than the journey. And I’m trying to enjoy the journey as we go, the struggles that we’re having, the ups and downs that we have, and just the day-to-day parts of life and being a racing driver.
“Each weekend you’re still trying to take risks and trying to get that car to do something that it doesn’t want to and that’s something I enjoy doing. If and when the car is willing to go further, I’m willing to go further. I’m willing to go as far as it needs in order for us to win.”
Mercedes have only won a single race since the start of last season. Prior to that they won eight consecutive constructors championship titles. However Hamilton pointed out this isn’t the first time in his career he hasn’t had a car capable of challenging for the championship.
“People forget that and just seem to remember the seven years or eight years that we were competitive,” he said. They forget the years before that where I had pretty interesting cars at McLaren.
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“So I’ve had years like last year and this year. Of course, when you’re faced with adversity, when you’re faced with a challenge like we have, collectively as a team, you learn more than you do than when it’s smooth sailing at the front.”
Hamilton, who was recently committed to spend another two years driving for Mercedes, said he and the team are constantly finding ways to improve how they can perform. He described the discussions he has with race engineer Peter Bonnington and trackside operations director Andrew Shovlin.
“Year on year you just learn to be more efficient with your time and with your energy. At the end of the year we’ll – Bono and I, and Shov – we’ll go through a list of things that worked and which didn’t work and just be honest. Like: ‘we keep doing this, this does not benefit my weekend at all’. Take that off and it gives you more time to focus on other areas or you add more things in which can benefit the team as a whole.
“I think the communication has improved massively in this past year and I think it’s been a really interesting process for people to be able to sit down and say ‘you know what, we made the wrong decisions, can you work with us to help rectify it and move forwards?’ And that’s what we’ve done this past two years.
“I think it has been a growing experience within the infrastructure. I have to probably try to commit even more time just through sheer will and wanting to get there. I think everyone has. But I don’t mind this because we don’t like to lose and we love the job that we do. So I’m enjoying it.”
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