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Hamilton's Struggle in China Setup Woes Continue

Hamilton’s Struggle in China: Setup Woes Continue

20/04/2024

Lewis Hamilton grapples with further setup changes at the Chinese GP, finishing 2nd in the Sprint but failing to advance in Q1.

Lewis Hamilton finished 2nd in the F1 Sprint this morning… but failed to get past Q1 for tomorrow’s Chinese Grand Prix qualifications!

We’re getting to know the Mercedes F1 driver and it’s yet another “massive” setup change that he highlighted to explain this performance, even though he believes that without his braking error at the hairpin, he would have made it to at least Q2.

Hamilton will start 18th.

“I was telling myself ‘it can’t be worse, surely’… and it happened. I’m struggling.”

“I made massive changes to the setup for the qualifications. It wasn’t too bad in some places. I couldn’t stop in turn 14. That’s how it is. Otherwise, I think I would have easily advanced.”

“This morning, George [Russell] and I had very similar cars, but this afternoon, we are still trying to experiment with the car, so I went one way and he went the other just to see if we could find something.”

“That’s what we have to do for now, but it didn’t work. I’ll do my best… 18th, that’s pretty bad. When I make setup changes, I always tell myself it gets worse afterwards but this time I’m not sure. We’ll see tomorrow. Now I’m praying for rain but I doubt it.”

For his teammate, George Russell, things went better with Q3 but only an 8th place.

“We didn’t have our best day today. With the strong wind, it was very tough. Conditions also changed since Friday, so we had to adapt. We chose the soft tire for the Sprint and the gamble really paid off. It went well and gave us good insights for tomorrow. Ultimately, we did well and scored a point.”

“Qualifications were also tricky. My first lap in Q2 was looking very good but the red flag forced us to abort it. We had to use another set of new tires to make it to Q3. Without that, we would have had two new sets for the last part of qualifications and it might have been a different result but who knows. We’re in this fight between 3rd and 8th place and, unfortunately, we ended up at the back of the pack in the last qualifications. Small differences can have a major impact.”

“It’s hard to predict what will happen tomorrow. Everything is still to play for with the cars around us, so I hope we’ll have the pace needed to move up.”

Hamilton's Struggle in China Setup Woes Continue

Hamilton’s Struggle in China: Setup Woes Continue. Hamilton’s Struggle in China: Setup Woes Continue

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