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2017 F1

Something is fundamentally wrong at Mercedes W08 – Hamilton

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Formula 1 world champion Lewis Hamilton has claimed that there is something “fundamentally wrong” with his Mercedes W08, despite winning the Drivers’ Championship by an easy 46 points.

Lewis overtook Michael Schumacher’s F1 pole position record with the Mercedes W08, and beat Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel with two races to spare to clinch his fourth career world title. But he trailed main rival Vettel for most of the championship as Mercedes struggled to unlock the car’s potential consistently.

It took Hamilton some time to find the right balance and he admitted he felt that he was driving “on a knife edge” for majority of the campaign.

“This (car) is the toughest one,” Hamilton told Motorsport.com. Some of the issues we’ve had have been with us for years and we are only just realising we need to really do something.

“New car, being on a wider scale magnifies the issue, I think. A different tyre dynamic, it has been the hardest in that respect.

“2008 [was] a difficult one too. 2009 was horrible. This is a great car, but it has been tricky getting it to work. Often to get that extra potential you have to overdrive a little bit, but it’s a fine balance of getting into that region.

“This year people have talked about us having the best car, and for sure it’s been good, but there are some fundamental issues with the car that I’m fighting to overcome.”

However, the Brit does believe that his experience in the sport has aided the team as he is able to bring the best out of the difficult vehicle.

“I feel like in those moments, I’ve been able to extract more than it was willing to do and that’s been positive,” Hamilton added.

“Often if you go the wrong [set-up] direction you don’t even get to the car’s potential – the car just won’t allow you to squeeze out the extra bit.

“Understanding the car has really allowed me to get the potential, and a little bit more, so even in the races where we’ve struggled we’ve come out with more than we’d hoped.”

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