REDESIGNS with quotes from Hamilton
Lewis Hamilton was full of optimism on Friday that he can still win a race this season to maintain a record of at least one Grand Prix success each year since his debut in 2007.
Mercedes endured a rollercoaster campaign with their temperamental 2022 car, but the seven-time world champion came close to picking up a win on the board, most recently at Zandvoort last weekend.
“I think I’m lucky this year, we still have seven races to go, and it’s always a very big goal for us as a team to get back to the front and fight for the lead,” he said. he declared. at Monza ahead of this weekend’s Italian Grand Prix.
The Briton’s checkered flag pursuit in Italy was hampered by a grid penalty for an engine change, his fourth engine of the year.
“My third engine that I had, brand new, at Spa, is still being worked on so I can’t use it at the moment, so I have to get a fourth,” he explained. , referring to the first lap collision with Fernando. Alonso’s Alpine at the Belgian Grand Prix.
“It’s my fault. We still hope to be able to use it later. But I have to recover as best I can at the back,” he added.
With a never-before-achieved eighth world title overtaking him this year as he trails runaway Red Bull series leader Max Verstappen by 152 points, Hamilton’s demeanor suggests he still believes that there is a lot to look forward to at the end of this season.
“I feel as good as it gets,” he said.
“Of course you’ll always feel better if you get a win, but despite everything, we’ve made so much progress as a team, we’ve closed the gap more and more – at least we’re closing it more. and more – weekend after weekend.
“Of course we don’t know how the car will be this weekend, whether or not it will be as good as the last race, we will find out.
Despite his hopes of victory, he made it clear that maintaining the record as the only driver to win a race each season was of no personal importance.
“Honestly, it doesn’t matter to me, so I’m grateful that every year since 2007 we’ve had an opportunity to win,” he said.
“I’m not focused on the record, but of course I’m trying to get this win this year. But the record isn’t that important to me because I don’t really care about records in general,” Hamilton said.
Confirming the engine change, Mercedes tweeted: “Lewis has taken a new power unit for this event – his fourth of the season – and will take a grid penalty for Sunday’s race.”
The rules allow each driver three power units a year – they can make other changes but at a cost in the form of some kind of grid penalty.
“It has not yet been confirmed whether the seven-time champion will be relegated to the back of the grid,” the Formula 1 website reported.
Mick Schumacher is also taking a penalty for Sunday’s race after his Haas team announced a gearbox change for his car.