Hamilton won't allow 'weak' title defence fears over Mercedes form

Lewis Hamilton says it would be "weak" of him to doubt Mercedes can win the 2018 Formula 1 title after losing the world championship lead to Sebastian Vettel in Canada

Hamilton won't allow 'weak' title defence fears over Mercedes form

Hamilton could manage only fifth in Montreal last weekend, as Vettel dominated from pole, and was outpaced by Red Bull and Ferrari in Monaco a fortnight earlier.

Asked whether he was starting to worry that the 2018 Mercedes was not good enough for him to successfully defend his title, Hamilton replied: "I don't let that get into my mind, no.

"That would be the first sign of weakness, and my mind is not weak.

"I'm still here to win, I still believe we can win. I have complete confidence in my guys and I'm putting that energy towards them.

"If you think of tennis, or golf, or whatever, in tennis if you look across the net and think 'I might lose this,' you've already lost.

"It doesn't matter where I start on the grid, I don't look at any driver and think, 'I might lose to that person.' I'm like, 'How can I beat them? How can I be better?' And I'm going to keep doing that until I die."

But Hamilton acknowledged that Mercedes can no longer claim to have the best car on the grid. "I think we've got potential in this car," he said.

"When you guys are writing stories, I think last year there was 'Mercedes had the best car' and all those different things - and ultimately we did the better job.

"You probably shouldn't be writing that right now, because we are not always outperforming the others, but also it's very close.

"The Red Bulls are in the mix every now and then, Ferrari have so far been the most consistent, but there's a lot of races to come."

Hamilton temporarily assumed the championship lead with his back-to-back wins in the Azerbaijan and Spanish GPs earlier this year, and is still only one point behind Vettel after Canada.

"It's definitely tough when you feel like you have done everything right and you don't get the result," Hamilton said.

"Every single person within the team feels the pain, but we win and we lose together, so it's just about lifting each other up, pulling together.

"There's still a long, long way to go. There are good days and bad days ahead.

"We can't guess when they are going to be, but all we can do is try to prepare the best we can, try to minimise the bad days, the losses, and capitalise on the big days."

shares
comments
How to get the best Belgian GP fan experience

Previous article

How to get the best Belgian GP fan experience

Next article

Haas Montreal update package its 'best and biggest' - Grosjean

Haas Montreal update package its 'best and biggest' - Grosjean
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Drivers Lewis Hamilton
Teams Mercedes
Author Adam Cooper
Why the demise of F1's hypocritical spending habit is cause for celebration Plus

Why the demise of F1's hypocritical spending habit is cause for celebration

For too long, F1's richest teams have justified being able to spend as much as they want because that's the way they've always conducted their business. STUART CODLING says that's no reason not to kick a bad habit

The double whammy that is defining Vettel’s F1 fate Plus

The double whammy that is defining Vettel’s F1 fate

It's been a tough start to Sebastian Vettel's Aston Martin F1 career, with a lack of pre-season testing mileage followed by an incident-packed Bahrain GP. But two key underlying factors mean a turnaround is no guarantee

The diva that stole a march on F1’s wide-bodied opposition Plus

The diva that stole a march on F1’s wide-bodied opposition

In 2017 new F1 technical regulations were supposed to add drama - and peg Mercedes back. STUART CODLING looks at the car which, while troubled, set the stage for the wide-bodied Formula 1 era

Formula 1
Apr 13, 2021
The themes to watch in F1’s Imola return Plus

The themes to watch in F1’s Imola return

Three weeks is a long time in Formula 1, but in the reshaped start to the 2021 season the teams head to Imola to pick things up after the frenetic Bahrain opener. Here's what to look out for and the developments to follow at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix

Formula 1
Apr 13, 2021
The 'new' F1 drivers who need to improve at Imola Plus

The 'new' F1 drivers who need to improve at Imola

After a pandemic-hit winter of seat-swapping, F1 kicked off its season with several new faces in town, other drivers adapting to new environments, and one making a much-anticipated comeback. BEN ANDERSON looks at who made the most of their opportunity and who needs to try harder…

Formula 1
Apr 12, 2021
The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture Plus

The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture

Aston Martin’s only previous foray into Formula 1 in the late 1950s was a short-lived and unsuccessful affair. But it could have been so different, says NIGEL ROEBUCK

Formula 1
Apr 10, 2021
Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of car-racing titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace Plus

Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of car-racing titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace

Max Verstappen’s star quality in Formula 1 is clear. Now equipped with a Red Bull car that is, right now, the world title favourite and the experience to support his talent, could 2021 be the Dutchman’s year to topple the dominant force of Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes?

Formula 1
Apr 9, 2021
Are we at peak F1 right now? Plus

Are we at peak F1 right now?

For many, many years Formula 1 has strived to do and to be better on all fronts. With close competition, a growing fanbase, a stable political landscape and rules in place to encourage sustainability, 2021 is on course to provide an unexpected peak

Formula 1
Apr 8, 2021