Hamilton, Russell, Wolff and Shovlin comment on the Emilia Romagna GP

© Steve Etherington for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd.

Lewis Hamilton, George Russell, Toto Wolff and Trackside Engineering Director Andrew Shovlin give their comments on the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.

Double points and fastest lap on Sunday at Imola

  • Lewis Hamilton finished P6 with George Russell P7 in Sunday’s Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.
  • Both drivers started on the Medium compound tyre, George lining up P6 with Lewis P8.
  • Lewis made immediate progress passing Tsunoda for P7, with our duo running line astern and with similar pace to the cars ahead for the opening 20 laps.
  • George began to see his Medium tyres dropping off and was the first of the top-10 to stop, switching to the Hard tyre on lap 21.
  • Lewis meanwhile extended his opening stint and, after stopping for the Hard tyre on lap 27, was able to run a one-stop race to the end.
  • Having pitted earlier than others, the team had some concerns over George’s Hard tyres making it to the end. He therefore made a precautionary stop for the used Medium tyre, dropping behind his team-mate, but then utilised it to take the fastest lap of the race point.

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Lewis Hamilton

My race was generally good. I had one moment which cost me about five seconds, but my race pace was generally strong so I’m happy with how it went. I made a good start and that was important to get past Tsunoda. From there, I was able to extend my opening stint and that helped me make the one-stop strategy work.

We’ve taken a small step forward this weekend and we have improved. Unfortunately, that is slightly masked by the step forward others such as McLaren and Ferrari have taken. We will keep pushing to bring more updates that can add performance. Until then, we will make sure we are scoring as many points as we can.

George Russell

We had some concerns over the Hard tyre being able to go to the end so made a second pit stop. Of course that means I lost a position to Lewis, but we were able to score one extra point as a team. It was quite a lonely race for us. We’ve slightly closed the gap to Red Bull and extended our advantage over the midfield. However, McLaren and Ferrari have also found similar gains so we are aiming to bring more performance and bigger steps as soon as we can. We’re never going to be satisfied with P6 and P7, but this is where we are at the moment.

Everyone is super motivated and it’s very inspiring to see. Everyone at Brackley and Brixworth are working so hard to bring improvements and it’s great to see. We’ve got to keep on pushing. This weekend we maximised the package we had, and we will continue to aim to do that moving forward.

Toto Wolff

It’s not possible to see it in terms of the result, but we have taken a small step forward this weekend. Our closest competitors have also done so recently, but we have closed the gap to the front a little. We still have a lot of work to do and of course, we are all frustrated finishing P6 and P7. There is more to come though, and it is all about making incremental gains. These are what we need to keep delivering if we are to get ourselves in the fight with the three teams ahead of us.

With George’s second stop, our wear forecasts showed that he may struggle to make it last to the end of the race on the Hard tyre. We had the opportunity to pit and get out ahead of Perez, and therefore opted to stop him. That also enabled us to go for the fastest lap point. It cost George a place to Lewis but ultimately the team was able to score an additional point.

Andrew Shovlin

It’s clear we have made progress this weekend, but our nearest competitors are also pushing hard. The race today confirmed that we need to continue to make these gains to be in the fight with the top-three teams. We are continuing to work on that, with the factory flat out on development. We will look to continue to bring updates to subsequent races.

Today, the Grand Prix didn’t throw us any opportunities. There were no Virtual Safety Cars or Safety Cars, so as much as P6 and P7 is frustrating, it is what our pace deserved. We’re not lacking any determination or effort to improve, and over the last few weeks it has been encouraging to see the efforts that every team member has put into the drive to get back to the front.

Source: Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team

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