Lewis Hamilton expects Mercedes will be more competitive in this weekend’s Italian Grand Prix following Ferrari’s dominant performance at Spa.
The team believes a combination of Ferrari’s superior engine performance and its weakness in slow-speed corners compromised its race weekend in Belgium. Hamilton said this suggests Monza won’t be as tough for them.
Mercedes’ poor traction in the slower corners at Spa was their biggest weakness, said Hamilton.
“The last two corners and turn one are where we lose a lot of time, and I think most of our time to be honest. But also today [Sebastian Vettel] didn’t have to do any management. He was just flat-chat, no problem with the tyres. Hopefully that element’s not a problem in the next race.”
Team principal Toto Wolff agreed Mercedes’ struggles at Spa were not unexpected given recent and historical form.
“The last [race] where we have been quickest was Silverstone. We were really good in [Paul] Ricard and Austria. And since then Ferrari has been quicker in Hockenheim, you can say Budapest was no surprise, Spa was always a bit of a tricky one for us in the past as well.
“Monza was a good one so I’m very curious to see how it’s going to go in Monza. Last year we were very much in control of the whole weekend, Ferrari had their worst weekend of the season performance-wise.”
Wolff added he’s “not worried” about their position in the championship fight. “I think we should still address the opportunities that exist within our car where we need to optimise and only that will make us win the championship.”
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2018 F1 season
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- McLaren Racing losses rise after Honda split
- Ricciardo: Baku “s***show” was Red Bull’s fault
- “Drive to Survive Episode 1: All to Play For” reviewed
- F1’s television and social media audiences rose last year