F1 Drivers

Engine worry for Hamilton before Italian GP race

Engine worry for Hamilton before Monza race

Engine worry for Hamilton before Monza race

Mercedes is heading into Sunday’s Italian grand prix with concerns about the engine that powered Lewis Hamilton to pole.

The dominant team entered the Monza weekend with a new specification of ‘power unit’ that is the basis of Mercedes’ development direction for 2016.

Making use of the remaining 7 in-season ‘tokens’, boss Toto Wolff had explained: “Because there are no more tests in the year, we have to test in the race.

“We cannot expect an entirely trouble-free weekend,” he admitted.

Indeed, the new unit fitted to Nico Rosberg’s car had to be replaced with an older unit before qualifying, and the German now lines up just fourth.

Rosberg openly blamed the ‘old’ engine for his three tenth gap to Hamilton, but team chairman Niki Lauda disputed that.

Asked to compare the ‘new’ with the ‘old’, he told Bild newspaper: “You cannot express it in horse power because the engine is connected to the electric power.

“The new engine is perhaps a tenth of a second (better),” Lauda added.

But other paddock sources dispute Lauda’s summary, arguing that Mercedes will have turned Hamilton’s engine down for qualifying due to the Rosberg glitch.

At the same time, Ferrari has taken a step forward with its new engine for Monza, as Kimi Raikkonen and Sebastian Vettel nibbled at Hamilton’s heels just over two tenths behind.

Wolff agrees that Ferrari, it seems, now has the ability to “turn up the power” on a Saturday more than in the past.

Rosberg’s unit, however, had been pulled out due to a problem, and Mercedes is now looking into what exactly went wrong.

“If we find an issue with Nico’s engine which would put Lewis’ race at risk we would consider an engine change and a penalty,” said Wolff, “because our car has great pace.” (GMM)

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  1. McSerb

    2015/09/06 at 8:56 am

    They turned down the engine all right. And Ferrari turned theirs up, which explains the small gap. Hamilton will have to change his engine as a measure of precaution and start from the pit.

    So, the suckers (all of the Formula 1 ordinary fans) get a “competitive” race to watch, Ferrari get to win at home (no, not with Kimi, it has to be Sebastian) and Hamilton provides the fun by cutting through the field from last to fourth with a new (old-specification) engine. That way the gap between Hamilton and Rosberg will be reduced instead of going up to about 40 points (now where would the fun in that be) and Ferrari get to win, sort of, making their huge army of fans VEEERY happy (for a while). Better yet, Mercedes could decide to keep the troublesome new spec engine in Hamilton`s car and when he suffers a DNF Rosberg could get much closer on points making the title race alive again.
    Sorry Toto, we read your book a long time ago. Anything new in the pipeline ?

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