SportF1F1 - Hamilton laments Mercedes' lack of straightline speed

F1 – Hamilton laments Mercedes' lack of straightline speed

The seven-time world champion arrived at the 2022 Formula 1 Japanese Grand Prix eager to erase with a stroke of the pen the bad feelings he left behind in a wet Singapore Grand Prix, in which he made several mistakes that almost left him out of points.

After a rainy Friday day in which Mercedes closed the day with a double, led by his teammate, George Russell, the veteran British driver acknowledged being “lost”, but believed he had options to fight against Red Bull and Ferrari for the pole position and victory.

However, that has not been the case, at least on Saturday. During the qualifying session, Lewis Hamilton was never able to get close to the times of the favorites and, to further disappointment, in the last and final Q3, the distance from pole increased to over nine tenths, even bordering on second ( 0.957s).

As soon as he got out of his car and after having checked the differences between his best lap and the best laps of Red Bull and Ferrari, the #44, although he said he was quite happy with the session in general and with the sensations of the W13, he regretted the lack top speed of your car.

We just weren’t quick on the straights , that’s where we lose most of our time. Other than that, the car felt really good today.”

“Honestly, I didn’t expect to be that far in qualifying. I was a bit surprised that from three tenths in Q2 we went to nine tenths in Q3. I don’t understand where that time comes from, although I know that three quarters is just due to the straight”.

“Today we made some changes to the set-up and the car felt really good. Overall I’m really happy with how qualifying went. the positives.”

Analyzing what could happen in the race, in which Hamilton will start from sixth position, ahead of Fernando Alonso’s Alpine and behind Esteban Ocon’s other Gallic car, he admitted that the presence of rain could perhaps benefit Mercedes.

“It’s not going to be amazing to race with our car and without DRS! Also, I think Red Bull is still faster without DRS on the straight than we are with DRS open. But we are quick in the corners.”

“I think rain always opens up more opportunities . I think if it’s dry it might not be the most exciting race, especially for us,” concluded the veteran British Mercedes driver.

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes W13

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