Mercedes will have a “difficult” time catching up to Red Bull, according to Lewis Hamilton, but they could achieve it.
Hamilton came in second at the Australian Grand Prix behind the quick Red Bull of Max Verstappen. The double world champion was initially overtaken by both Mercedes cars, but George Russell’s pit stop just before the first caution put Hamilton in the lead.
At the initial restart, Hamilton was in first place, but Verstappen quickly overtook him in a car that, in comparison to the Mercedes, appeared to be more like a jet plane.
The seven time world champion was very pleased by his second-place result in light of the Red Bulls’ quick pace and the problems Mercedes has been facing with the W14.
“That meant today we had a shot at, you know, trying to at least overtake Max for a second,” Hamilton said. “And so, we both got ahead, which was amazing.”
“To have a Mercedes one-two for a second. And obviously, he came sailing by at one stage, but it was a really entertaining race, and I had a really good battle with Fernando, which was awesome.”
Hamilton had acknowledged that he experienced severe discomfort in the W14, a problem he continued to experience in Australia. For the Mercedes driver, at least, one of the problems with the car is that the cockpit is too close to the front for his unique driving style.
“Yeah, I still feel uncomfortable in the car, though,” he said after the Australian Grand Prix. “The car… I still don’t feel connected to it.”
“So I’m driving as best I can with that disconnect. And I’m working as hard as I can to try and create that connect.”
“But I think it’s a long project… But still, considering we’ve been down on performance, we’re clearly down on end-of-straight pace compared to the Red Bulls, for us to be up here fighting with Aston is just amazing at this point in the season.”
“And we’ve just got to keep on fighting.”
“Big, big thank you to all the people back to the factory… Let’s keep pushing… We can close that gap. It’s going to be tough, but not impossible.”