Mercedes introduced the newest iteration of its ground design to final weekend’s United States Grand Prix in Austin because it continues to chase enhancements that won’t solely yield lap time throughout 2023’s last races however may also stand it in good stead for subsequent 12 months’s automobile design.
Like its predecessor, the W14 has been a difficult beast to tame for Hamilton and team-mate George Russell, who’ve each battled via varied levels of missing confidence within the automobile via high-speed corners.
Austin appeared to mark a step ahead for Hamilton as he completed an in depth second behind Crimson Bull’s Max Verstappen, even when he was later disqualified for extreme ground plank put on.
“Yeah, positively I feel the step that we have been in a position to take this weekend has given me just a little bit extra confidence within the automobile, to throw it into the corners,” Hamilton stated earlier than his disqualification.
“I actually loved driving round this monitor. There are nonetheless a number of the basic points that we’re having with the automobile, which will not change till subsequent 12 months.
“However it was actually Positive to really feel that the steps that we’re taking.”
Photograph by: Steve Etherington / Motorsport Images
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG, on the grid
Hamilton defined that the Austin ground improve was price at the least as a lot lap time from the driving facet because it delivered from the elevated rear downforce itself.
“Perhaps it was [worth] solely a tenth [as an] improve, for instance, however there was at the least a tenth of confidence that it gave me,” the seven-time world champion added.
“So, it is fairly fascinating what you see whenever you do have these, it is like a double knock-on impact.”
Workforce principal Toto Wolff referred to as the ground improve an “fascinating experiment” within the Brackley squad’s strategy of placing collectively subsequent 12 months’s machine.
“It was directionally an fascinating experiment, whether or not it might work,” he added.
“It offers us extra indications; have been we on the precise path for subsequent 12 months’s automobile?
“The replace directionally functioned from the get-go. Lewis stated he feels the rear finish. George by no means type of acquired to the purpose the place he stated the automobile was good. We have to study that, that’s such an element.
When requested if Hamilton’s love for Austin’s Circuit of the Americas additionally contributed to a standout efficiency, Wolff replied: “Lewis was at all times very sturdy in Austin. And when he is on a roll he is unstoppable.
“However I would not suppose that we’d have such a efficiency, simply because it is one among Lewis’s good tracks.”
Further reporting by Jon Noble