“Louis was the fastest guy”

(Motorsport-Total.com) – Once again, Lewis Hamilton has to concede defeat to teammate George Russell in a qualifying duel (here’s an overview): While Russell qualified sixth in Monaco on Saturday, Hamilton did not move beyond eighth. Just under half a second separated the Mercedes duo.

Lewis Hamilton couldn’t finish the last qualifying lap

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However, team boss Toto Wolff says on “Sky”: “Lewis was the quickest guy and then he stopped the lap because we told him: If you get the impression the tires aren’t ready in return, you stop. He did that and then ran towards the red flag.”

With this, Q3 was called off a few minutes before the end of the session after Sergio Perez (Red Bull) crashed into the last corner before the tunnel and then was hit by Carlos Sainz (Ferrari). That’s why Hamilton couldn’t finish the fast lap – unlike Russell.

Hamilton: ‘Worse than expected’

“I think it wasn’t too bad before that,” Hamilton talks about at his pace before demolition, but doesn’t grieve: “Something like that could happen, it is.”

Overall, the Briton continued, the car felt better. “But it looks like we’re slower. I don’t know exactly why. I felt like we’d improved the car in terms of rebound, but we were slower.”

The team was already anticipating that Mercedes would have a tough time in Monaco. But Hamilton admits: “I think it’s worse than we expected because of the bumps. For us, it’s very bumpy all around, whether it’s low, medium or high speed, so it’s a challenge.”

Team boss Wolff also says: “That’s the truth, that’s what it looks like. Monaco in particular hasn’t been easy for us in the past, but we have to accept that.” The distance is the same as in the qualifiers in Barcelona. “So it’s realistic where we ended up. The car is good for fifth and sixth. Norris was faster than us, but we shouldn’t have expected miracles here anyway.”


Crash: This is how Leclerc conquered the Pole in Monaco

Charles Leclerc (Ferrari) is in pole position, just as in 2021, and just as in 2021, a crash prevented other drivers from being able to improve. For example, Max Verstappen (Red Bull), who, according to Helmut Marko, would have directed the storm to P1. But we also analyze the crucial collision at the entrance to the tunnel, where Ayrton Senna had a legendary accident in 1988. As usual, we look at the Germans on the field, Sebastian Vettel (Aston Martin) and Mick Schumacher (Haas). More Formula 1 videos

Although the same aerodynamic forces are at work in Monaco as in, say, Barcelona, ​​car bounce turned out to be a problem for Mercedes this time around as well. But Wolff does not want to talk about “porn fishing,” which has been discussed a lot this season.

He explains the problem in Monaco: “The car still jumps, just differently, and this plane doesn’t jump anymore, it’s just very stiff.” “We have that on the front axle in particular. That makes it relatively uncontrollable for the driver. Of course you need confidence there and we don’t have that.”

Racing speed is good, starting position is bad

This is exactly what Chief Engineer Andrew Shovlin confirms. In short: “It was a difficult day for the team and the drivers.” “It was not easy to work with the car here and the ride height issues we had made it difficult for George and Lewis to build confidence in the car.”

“We tried most things with the tyres,” the Briton reveals about work on Saturday. “In the end we managed to get it in the window just right, sector one being our best sector. However, we fell a little bit halfway through.”

On the other hand, it was due to overheating, which Hamilton complained about on the radio in Q2. On the other hand, it was due to the fact that ground clearance problems cost more time in the latter two sectors.

Sixth and eighth are not good starting positions, and while the race pace looked good on Friday, it’s hard to take advantage of when you’re stuck in traffic,” says Shovlin. It is a known fact that overtaking opportunities are few and far between on the narrow street circuit in Monaco.


Photos: Mercedes, F1: Monaco Grand Prix 2022


But Mercedes is speculating about accidents: “The racing is rarely live here, however, there could be some chances in terms of strategy and it looks like the weather forecast there could be a bit of rain, which makes us very happy given our starting positions will be.”

Wolff and Hamilton hope so, too. “Well, I hope it rains and gets really strong. Then of course the podium will be a goal that we strive to achieve,” says the team leader. “I’m not going to do a rain dance,” Hamilton adds, “but I want it to rain so it’s a little better than driving eighth in a dry place.”

“You can’t overtake here,” the Mercedes driver asserts. “So I hope the weather will cooperate and there will be opportunities and people may use different strategies. It would be good to have a little luck.”

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