Hamilton admits Mercedes upgrade package is not magic cure

Lewis Hamilton admits Mercedes’ long-awaited upgrade package is ‘definitely not the step forward we were hoping for’ and insists bid to close the gap on rampant Red Bull will be a ‘long process’

  • Lewis Hamilton previously said he was ‘counting down the days’ to the upgrades 
  • However, he has diluted his enthusiasm and says the changes are not a magic fix 
  • Hamilton finished sixth in Monaco qualifying and fourth during Sunday’s race 

Lewis Hamilton has admitted Mercedes’ long-awaited upgrade package is not a magic cure for his struggling car.

The 37-year-old was speaking ahead of this weekend’s Spanish Grand Prix, the second outing for the revamped machine. It carried him to sixth in qualifying in Monaco a week ago and fourth in the rain-affected race. George Russell qualified eight and finished fifth.

Hamilton had previously said he was ‘counting down the days’ to the upgrade’s arrival, but has now diluted his enthusiasm, conceding: ‘It is definitely not the step forward we were hoping for.

‘We wanted a one-second improvement in race trim (over Red Bull), and we have not covered that.

‘I felt a little bit more confident in the car at the last race, and more ability to commit to the corners, so I am hoping at this track it will be the same but better.

Lewis Hamilton has insisted Mercedes’ long-awaited upgrade package is not a magic fix

Hamilton finished fourth at the Monaco Grand Prix, comfortably adrift of Max Verstappen

‘We have taken account of where we have gone wrong. Now we are slowly chipping away and navigating our way back to the front, but it is just a long process unfortunately.’

Hamilton’s honest assessment came as Red Bull’s dominant world champion Max Verstappen claimed it was possible the team could win every race of the season. They have won the first six and, remarkably, 16 of the last 17.

‘Well, I would say at the moment I think we can, but that’s very unlikely to happen,’ said the Dutchman. ‘There are always things that go wrong, a retirement or whatever. But purely on pace at the moment, yes, it’s possible.

‘About the dominance, we’ve always seen this in Formula One over the years, there’s nothing new. The longer you leave the regulations the same, the closer people will get.’

Red Bull’s Verstappen claimed it is possible the domineering team wins every race of the year

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