Hamilton encouraged by the pace of his Mercedes W04
The Brit held second place for most of the race despite dropping back from eventual winner Sebastian Vettel by quite some margin. He was eventually pipped to second after a late overtake by Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso.
Despite dropping down the order, Hamilton felt happy with his performance. Speaking in a team statement he said: “The car felt fantastic today and I had good grip for the low-speed corners but we just weren’t quite on the pace of Seb and Fernando. I was on the maximum that I could possibly drive and we got absolutely everything out of the car today.”
Whilst he admitted that it “would have been nice” to have kept second, he was still “very pleased” with the result and added: “We’ve taken a step up in the Constructors’ Championship which is great for the team and gives us a nice boost going into Silverstone.”
His team-mate Nico Rosberg suffered higher tyre wear and subsequently had to switch from his originally planned two stop strategy. After three trips to the pit lane, Rosberg eventually crossed the line some way behind Hamilton in fifth place. Reacting to the result he said: “I think fifth place was probably my optimum today and, even if my race had gone perfectly, I wasn’t able to match the pace of the guys in front. I scored some good points and we know that there are areas where we can still improve our performance. But looking back to where we were a month ago, we have made some good steps forward, and it was great for Lewis to be on the podium again.”
Concluding, the Monaco race winner added: “We are heading in the right direction and looking forward to the next race at Silverstone, in front of our team-mates from Brackley and Brixworth.” Team Principal Ross Brawn admitted that it was a good race by both drivers, saying: “The car performed reasonably well but we still had some anxiety about the tyre performance in the high temperatures, so we were managing the situation carefully. Nico had a reasonably quiet race after a strong first stint and we will have to analyse if we could have made more of the car’s performance today with him.”
Brawn also admitted that Rosberg’s final stop was a precaution after he heavily flat spotted the tyre: “We called him in for a third stop as a precaution, because he had flat-spotted badly the right-front tyre badly and we had nothing to gain or lose in terms of track position.”
Image courtesy of Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team
Jack Leslie is a freelance motorsport journalist. He has been part of the Richland F1 team since the very start and made his debut in the F1 paddock for the website at the 2014 Austrian Grand Prix. Jack also writes for Car Throttle and RumbleStripNews, as well as running a popular blog.