A Mercedes had a weekend to forget at the Brazilian GP Formula 1. According to Lewis Hamiltonthe crucial factor in the team’s below-average performance was the floor.
The Brit overtook the Aston Martins of Lance Stroll and Fernando Alonso at the start and occupied third position for a brief period, but after that he fell down the grid, complaining at one point that, even with the DRS open, he was unable to challenge the front car.
Hamilton ended up finishing eighth, while his teammate George Russell performed even worse and retired with a cooling problem.
“My guess is the floor isn’t working,” he said when asked by Motorsport.com about your radio comment about DRS. “The floor isn’t sucking up the water. This caused us to use a higher wing and so it was dragging us a lot on the straights.”
“We were losing a lot of time on the straights, there was nothing I could do and we were sliding around the corners. So we have to see why this happens on this irregular circuit.”
Summing up his afternoon, he said: “The tires were overheating, slow on the straights, no grip on the corners.” Hamilton said that even passing the two Aston Martins at the start didn’t give him much cause for optimism.
“No, I knew we were going to have a tough day,” he said. “Nothing changed in the car from Saturday to Sunday. So I knew it was going to be a difficult day.”
Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images
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“Yesterday I just ate up the tires with an unexpected lack of pace. I think I drove better today in terms of doing my stints, but we were slow.” He added: “I don’t know. I’m sure there’s something in the set-up that we could have done a little better, but whether that would have put us further ahead or not, I can’t say.”
To add to his problems, at one point Hamilton reported that it felt like his left front wheel was turning to the right.
“Yes, it’s very strange,” he said. “The car started to turn to the right while I was going to the left. But in the end everything went fine. I think it must have just been a gust of wind.”
Hamilton did not know whether the problems at Interlagos were specific to the track or a more general setback. “It’s hard to say,” he noted. ‘Ultimately, at the moment it is a setback, but as a team we will come together and try to move forward.’
“There will be a lot of analysis this week after today and I’m sure there will be things that we think, ‘Oh, maybe if we had done that it would have been better’, but I think ultimately the car didn’t work here for some reason , and that’s the way it is.”
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