Seven-time Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton says that he has struggled with his Mercedes car all weekend in Mexica. The Englishman will start Sunday’s race from sixth place and speaking following qualifying he commented saying:
I’ve been struggling all weekend with the car and it has been a bit of a nightmare to drive. We’ve had to try and put the performance together piece by piece, and we made good changes going into qualifying so that I was much happier with the car. Q1 and Q2 weren’t looking too bad – especially the second run in Q2. But the car is just really peaky – sometimes it’s in the window, sometimes not. And I couldn’t squeeze anything more out of it on that final lap. The race is definitely going to be a challenge: we will be overheating the tyres and the brakes, so it won’t be easy to battle the cars around us. I don’t really know what kind of race to expect but it’s going to be on a knife edge.
Geroge Russell set the eighth fastest time in qualifying with a 01:17,674s and speaking following the action he commented saying:
It was a bit of a shame to end up P8 because we showed signs of strong pace at points, but we didn’t deliver when it counted. We lacked consistency today – some runs we were strong, others not, so it was a confusing picture. On the final run, we had one set of new tyres and tried something different on the out lap, and it didn’t work and the tyres weren’t in the window. As for tomorrow, it will be hard from P8 – the brakes will need managing and PU temperatures are always a challenge, too. We came here expecting to be competitive and I hope we can make progress in the race, but it won’t be easy.
Toto Wolff, Team Principal and CEO of the Mercedes AMG PETRONAS F! Team commented:
P6 and P8 are less than we had hoped for from qualifying today. We made some good steps with the car today, but we couldn’t put the lap times together when it really counted. Ferrari made a massive jump from Q2 to Q3, and you could see all the way through the session that it was all about fine margins – two or three seconds of out lap pace, and getting the tyres perfectly in the window, or just slipping out of it. On our final new tyre, it looks like we were a bit too slow and the tyres a bit too cool – but it’s just tricky to find that sweet spot. We are less than three tenths off pole, but it feels like a lot more given our starting positions. We showed some decent race pace yesterday – but we don’t know if that will translate tomorrow, after the set-up changes we made. But the only goal will be to move forward from where we start.