Lewis Hamilton's Mercedes team fear repeat of their Monaco nightmare

Adjust Comment Print

With the exception of the seasonopening Melbourne race, the 33-year-old had so far this season appeared ill at ease in his Mercedes, fighting to impose his will on a capricious vehicle.

"It has been a rejuvenating experience", he said.

Hamilton's victory at the Circuit de Catalunya means the Brit now has a 17-point lead over Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel at the top of the F1 drivers' standings.

It was the first one-two of the season for Mercedes, which had struggled to keep pace with the Ferraris.

"Today, the vehicle and myself, I felt that synergy today, which I hadn't been feeling for the whole year", he said immediately after pulling up in parc ferme. "It's a good feeling".

Coming off four straight titles in both the constructors' and drivers' championships, Mercedes had started the season by showing good pace in Australia, although it let victory escape thanks in part to an ill-timed safety auto that helped Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel earn the win in Melbourne. To think that it is my 64th career win, but it still feels like my first, is special and unique in its own way.

"I remember like it was yesterday sitting at home playing this computer game as Michael", Hamilton said.

Let me know where your favorite driver finished and if you think they can do better in the next round. "It's hard to beat all of these records that he has".

This is especially because in Spain, Hamilton set a record of scoring points in thirty consecutive F1 races, something that marks his driver-and-team combination as the single most consistent in the history of Formula One.

"We've definitely got ourselves on to the right path". "I would like to hope it could be part of the turning point".

Pressure had been building on the Silver Arrows following a tricky start to the season - a miscalculation by the team cost Hamilton dear in Australia and he had to settle for third and fourth-place finishes in Bahrain and China respectively.

Ricciardo was fifth in Barcelona, ahead of Kevin Magnussen of Haas and the Spanish duo of Carlos Sainz of Renault and Fernando Alonso of McLaren. Sergio Perez finished in ninth place ahead of the Sauber of Charles Leclerc.

Hamilton managed to put a gap of 6.5 seconds between himself and second placed Vettel. Ferrari brought in Vettel for a tyre change. He lost time in the pits and came back onto the track behind Verstappen, and was unable to make up the difference despite the newer tyres.

"Lewis was able to control the race and whilst we could have gone longer on that first stint, the front tyre was quite worn and we made a decision to stop as a precaution as there was no real threat from behind", he said. "This put Lewis behind [Max] Verstappen but we knew he had to stop so there was no urgency to pass".