Lewis Hamilton Despondent After Miami GP


- Grant Whittington

Seven-time Formula 1 world champion Lewis Hamilton emerged a despondent figure from the weekend’s Miami Grand Prix after a disappointing sixth-place place on the grid.

Speaking after the race, Hamilton said there been no “going forward” with the car. Team principal Toto Wolff, too, admitted that the car remains heavily off pace and is a difficult piece of equipment to handle and understand.

At present, the expectation is that the new concept car will be dropped by the Silver Arrows ahead of next season.

Verstappen A Dominating Force

Red Bull driver Max Verstappen won the race after he passed Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc on the 9th lap before delivering a paced spring to the checkered flag.

Verstappen’s dominant pace left Leclerc unable to keep up with the Red Bull ace. His victory saw him close in on Leclerc up to a 19-points trail.

For Mercedes, the hope had been that Miami would see them draw much for from the car than in previous races, but unfortunately, this did not realise. The car continues to be a problem with violent porpoising happening on the straights.

While Hamilton improved his recent performances by finishing 6th, and with teammate George Russell in 5th, the pair remained one second per lap off the leaders.

Hamilton said the unfortunate thing about Miami was that the team raced no quicker than in the first event of the season. While there’s been no improvement in all of five races, the Brit said he remained hopeful that things would improve and plans on continuing to work hard at it.

For Hamilton, the 2022 season has been a battle of man vs. the machine. Accustomed to winning races and titles, his car is this year only the third-fastest on the grid.

Mastering A “Dark Art”

Even though Mercedes has said they continue to believe in the potential of the new car, Hamilton has all but buried his hopes of a record 8th world title.

According to Wolff, the car remains a “dark art” and certainly the cause of much frustration for the entire team.

Wolff said it isn’t as if the car doesn’t have the potential to perform, but that Mercedes has not yet figured out how to unlock that potential.

Wolff also singled out the upcoming race in Barcelona as a key and significant moment. He said the team won’t be switching to a new concept car until such time as they’ve figured out the issues with the current one.

He said Barcelona will be the tell-all in terms of the strategy going forward.

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