Forgot Password

 

Register

 

Create your Connect ID

This will allow you to login to all DStv websites & applications




or
Login using
x

Email Reset

 




Loading...
Loading Live Scoring...
*All times CAT (GMT+2)

Motorsport | Formula 1

Lewis Hamilton © Gallo Images

Hamilton sees Mercedes progress in the long run



Lewis Hamilton is confident his Mercedes can be more competitive at the Malaysian Grand Prix than it was at last week's season-opener in Melbourne after an encouraging first day of free practice on Friday.

Hamilton qualified third but finished fifth in the first competitive outing for his new team at Albert Park and despite not being able to match the one-lap speed of his rivals at Sepang, the Briton was buoyed by his day's work.

"It felt quick and better than it did in the last race and fingers crossed it will be," the 2008 world champion told reporters, despite lapping more than a second slower than Melbourne winner Kimi Raikkonen's Lotus.

"We have taken a step forward on long-run pace but the others look pretty quick as well, so it's difficult to judge where we are.

"The Lotus looks really quick and it's not until after I analyse the laps that I can judge how good ours was," said Hamilton, who was ninth in both sessions at Sepang.

Managing tyres appears to be the main dilemma facing most teams this season and after rapid degradation cost Hamilton a chance of a podium in Australia, the Briton feels his team are learning how to get the most out of the Pirellis.

"In the first session, we did chew up the tyres a bit but that was mostly due to the set up of the car, which had a lot of oversteer," he added.

"I think we are stronger race-pace wise. When we did the long-run, it felt pretty strong."

Mercedes team principal Ross Brawn hinted that Hamilton and teammate Nico Rosberg were carrying heavier fuel loads than normal to get a better gauge of how the tyres reacted in race conditions.

Brawn's comments indicate the team would be more competitive in qualifying on Saturday but Rosberg was quick to downplay the raw speed of the Mercedes compared to the front runners.

"We have been concentrating on the long-run performance because that was a little bit our problem in Melbourne and we're doing better there," the German said.

"On the short run, it wasn't looking that great so maybe we're a little bit behind."

Shop

Lewis Hamilton: My story
Lewis Hamilton’s explosive arrival on the Formula 1 scene has made front-page headlines
R112.64
Psychology of motorsport success
Motorsport is a highly addictive and extremely exciting activity
R369.89


Comments

More expert analysis and opinion from Sport24
The opinions expressed by Sport24 experts and bloggers are theirs alone, and do not necessarily represent those of SuperSport

Latest Video Highlights

Sports Talk



Guest Column
Fit as an F1 driver
Nico Rosberg turns around with a grin during a slight uphill section, shouting "Hey, what's the...

Reuters on Motorsport
Team prospects for the 2013 F1 season
Team-by-team prospects for the Formula One season starting in Melbourne, Australia, on March.