Lewis Hamilton says he feels helpless after Russian GP problems

Lewis Hamilton says he feels "almost helpless" after he suffered a Mercedes power unit problem in qualifying for the second successive Formula 1 grand prix

Lewis Hamilton says he feels helpless after Russian GP problems

The reigning world champion failed to take part in Q3 in Russia as Mercedes identified a problem identical to that encountered in China.

It was the latest setback for Hamilton, who has had problems in all three of the opening new races and trails team-mate Nico Rosberg by 36 points.

"I don't know what the word is, I can't really describe what I feel right now - it's not a great feeling," a downbeat Hamilton told reporters on Saturday.

"You're almost helpless at some points, we've worked so hard, with my mechanics and my engineers, to get the car in a great position this weekend.

"We had the great pace once again and this happens to us all unexpectedly.

"I feel helpless for my guys because there's not really much I can do to uplift them and there's not really much they can do to uplift me because it's already happened.

"The goal is moving further and further away in the distance. I'm doing everything I can do. There's nothing else I can do."

Hamilton is hoping to avoid first-lap trouble and then to produce a fightback similar to Rosberg's in 2014, when he came from last to second after an early error.

"I'm just hoping to have a clean first lap and have a car in one piece to fight with people," he said.

"I don't think I've had one race this year with a full car after Turn 1 so that's what I'm hoping for.

"Nico started a way back a while ago, so it obviously is possible.

"I've not really had to do much overtaking here over the last few years so I don't know how difficult it is but I'm not a bad overtaker so it should be alright."

Rosberg had no such problems in qualifying to take his second successive pole.

"The car was balanced perfectly and through the weekend we just progressed so much," he said.

"We hit it in Q2 and from then on it was just going really well.

"That's what I'm really pleased about and I haven't thought too much about Sunday yet.

"Of course starting from pole position will be great.

"It's never easy but the way the grid is does help me out a lot, for sure."

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