Hamilton says he feels “a million times better” than he did in 2016

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The last time Lewis Hamilton had to fight for the title in the season finale was back in 2016 against team-mate Nico Rosberg. The Briton says he feels “a million times better” now.

Back in 2016 Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton were in year three of their fierce championship rivalry. Although Lewis managed to win the title in 2014 and 2015, in 2016 he lost the championship in the last race of the season.

Lewis was asked to compare how he feels now as he approaches the title-deciding Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, versus how he felt back then.

“A million times different,” the Briton said.

“It’s a much, much different scenario. Completely different and a million times better I feel now than I did then. I feel good.”

He said that he doesn’t “particularly want to go into” why he is feeling better now, but he says he is “just in a different place in life than in 2016”.

“[I’m] facing different resistance in life and this time I’m just in a different and much happier place.”

Asked if he is a better driver now, Lewis said:

“Yes. And teammate.”

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Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff also described how the whole experience differs from the one in 2016.

“It’s very different,” the Austrian said at the Friday press conference.

“I would say that the intensity of the situation was maybe more in 2016 because if you have a rivalry and a fight within the team.

“Trying to manage the two sides of the garage and obviously not being one-sided but keeping everything transparent was very, very difficult.

“Also, for me, I was still very much in my junior year, so I don’t want to go back to the difficulties of that relationship or that situation there.

“There are many things I would do differently today and this one is just a fierce fight between teams and drivers that have done a really great job.

“Sometimes in the races the two or three drivers in the lead, we were 45 seconds up the road, like being almost the whole field, and this shouldn’t sound arrogant in any way, but it shows the push all of us have done in order to win this.

“It’s probably a level that certainly in my years at Mercedes is unprecedented,” concluded Wolff.

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