Subscribe

Sign up for free

  • Get quick access to your favorite articles

  • Manage alerts on breaking news and favorite drivers

  • Make your voice heard with article commenting.

Autosport Plus

Discover premium content
Subscribe

Lewis Hamilton doubts kerb caused his Australian GP floor damage

Lewis Hamilton has downplayed his Mercedes Formula 1 team's suggestion that his Australian Grand Prix floor damage was caused by kerbs, and still suspects that debris was the reason

In a Mercedes video released last week strategist James Vowles indicated that the damage was sustained "during the course of the race while riding over some of the kerbs".

But Hamilton does not believe that that was the case.

"We saw the drop in performance from lap four," he said. "There was an assumption made that it was by kerbs, but I didn't ride any more kerbs than I had done in the past, so it most likely was debris, some debris from other cars losing parts of their cars.

"It could have been that, but it's all a guessing game. I didn't make any mistakes or run wide anywhere to cause the incident. But it was a big loss in performance."

Hamilton also denied suggestions that he was deliberately holding Sebastian Vettel up in Australia, which in turn made the Ferrari driver vulnerable to attack from Max Verstappen.

"I never ever plan to hold anybody up. I was just doing my own race," said Hamilton.

"I naturally wanted to keep him behind, but I knew that I had a long, long way to go.

"He stopped a lap before me so I knew that we'd both be in a similar boat towards the end.

I was thinking a bit more long term so that I could defend to up and coming cars towards the end of the race - which I'm not sure he really thought of, because his tyres went off quite drastically at the end."

The world champion even suggested that his own engineers had not fully appreciated the tactics that he was using when he was pacing himself. He finished 20 seconds behind race winning team-mate Valtteri Bottas.

"They thought that I was off the pace, which I'm sure a lot of the public thought," said Hamilton.

"But I was saving tyres, saving fuel, making sure that I had enough to push to the end, which was all that I needed to do to finish where I was.

"I couldn't do any more to get further ahead and I didn't need to do any less."

Be part of the Autosport community

Join the conversation
Previous article Mercedes F1's Lewis Hamilton: Racism won't change for a long time
Next article Sebastian Vettel: Ferrari could've lost straightline speed edge

Top Comments

Sign up for free

  • Get quick access to your favorite articles

  • Manage alerts on breaking news and favorite drivers

  • Make your voice heard with article commenting.

Autosport Plus

Discover premium content
Subscribe