Lewis Hamilton vows Mercedes’ poor form ‘won’t stop us in our tracks’

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Lewis Hamilton believes that a tough start to the season has brought Mercedes closer together  (AP)
Lewis Hamilton believes that a tough start to the season has brought Mercedes closer together (AP)

Lewis Hamilton has said he has “no doubts” that Mercedes will soon again be successful, vowing that a tough start to the season “will not stop us in our tracks”.

The German team have been off-the-pace at the first five races of the 2022 Formula 1 season, struggling with ‘porpoising’ and wider performance issues and yet to truly contend for race victory.

While George Russell, who joined Mercedes to partner Hamilton ahead of 2022, has finished in the top five at every grand prix so far, Ferrari and Red Bull have established clear superiority over the rest of the grid.

Mercedes have won the Constructors’ Championship every year since 2014 as part of a run of dominance that has included six world titles for Hamilton.

And while the 37-year-old languishes in sixth in the early Drivers’ Championship standings, Hamilton is certain that the togetherness at Mercedes will enable them to return to success.

“I love working with this team,” Hamilton said. “Being in a team is such a privilege and working with so many people towards a common goal.

“And everyone lifted each other up. Incredible how supportive everyone has been through the difficult times, and then we’ve had the most incredible times together.

“So, you know, a couple of bad races is not going to stop us in our tracks.

“This is where we unite: this is where we learn more about ourselves as individuals; this is where we, we grow the most. And it makes that eventual success – which I have no doubts we will eventually get to – taste even better.”

There were signs during practice at the Miami Grand Prix that Mercedes may have been moving closer to solving some of their issues after several design tweaks, but any optimism was tempered by a disappointing qualifying performance.

Russell qualified outside of the top ten, though battled up the field on race day to record another fifth-placed finish, one spot ahead of his senior teammate.

The former Williams driver has been praised for the manner in which he has managed a problematic car, with the 24-year-old believing his experience racing for a less competitive manufacturer has been beneficial.

For Hamilton, conversely, this is the first time in recent memory that the seven-time world champion has not been driving a a truly competitive vehicle.

The British driver is trying to block out the negativity around his performance to search for inspiration, drawing on a wide range of people to keep him “pushing” forward.

“I wouldn’t say there was one individual during this time that I am focussed on,” Hamilton explained.

“I think I look all around me, and I see I tried to ignore the negative that I see. I’m not really watching the news a lot, but there’s so many inspiring characters out there.

“And I think just continuously proving that you never give up, you keep pushing.”

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