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Hamilton Revels in Sprint Lead Reignites F1 Passion

Hamilton Revels in Sprint Lead, Reignites F1 Passion

26/04/2024

Lewis Hamilton’s front-runner performance at the Chinese Grand Prix Sprint rekindled his love for Formula 1 and boosted his confidence.

Lewis Hamilton enjoyed being at the front during the Sprint of the Chinese Grand Prix. The Mercedes F1 driver, who led the first half of the brief event, admits that it restored his confidence, even though he acknowledges benefiting from the challenging conditions during the Shootout.

“Whenever you get a good result, it’s always a confidence booster; that’s life,” said Hamilton. “The circumstances were unique with the rain during the Sprint qualifying, but clearly, I had to do my job and complete that lap.”

He enjoyed reclaiming his role as a race leader: “I don’t remember having this view for a long time, or at least it feels like it’s been very long. I’m not sure if we’ve had it over the last two years.”

“Being able to fight for the lead at turn 1 reminded me why I love what I do and what we all do here. I know we need to work very hard to return to a more consistent ranking like this one.”

“I didn’t even fight Max because he was very fast. I knew he was going to pass me and I really wanted to make sure not to lose time compared to the cars further back in order to keep second place.”

A surprising second place in the Sprint

James Allison, Mercedes’ technical director, admits that the second place in the Sprint was unexpected: “To be honest, I didn’t expect us to stay in second position, because I don’t think the car is fast enough to deserve it at the moment.”

“The rain was a problem for everyone during Sprint qualifying. I think we need to tip our hats to Lewis for managing to pull through under incredibly challenging circumstances during this Sprint qualifying, as cars were going off track.”

Allison also acknowledges that the dynamics of the Sprint helped the seven-time world champion secure his second place, but doesn’t detract from his driver’s merit.

“He deserved that spot, that second place on the grid. But in the dry conditions of the sprint race, I felt that we were likely to be overtaken by the two Red Bulls, among others, because we currently have a pace deficit compared to the leading cars, and there’s no denying it.”

“However, things went somewhat our way with how Norris had a poor start. And as Fernando was then leading the faster cars, it took them a while to pass him, which gave us a bit of breathing room. But I don’t want to downplay the achievement because I think Lewis maximized what he had in the car that day.”

“It was good for all of us to place the car in a correct position on the starting grid and to bring it to the flag in that same position. But I think the circumstances of the race helped us a bit, with Fernando acting as a buffer between us and the faster cars.”

Hamilton Revels in Sprint Lead Reignites F1 Passion

Hamilton Revels in Sprint Lead, Reignites F1 Passion. Hamilton Revels in Sprint Lead, Reignites F1 Passion

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