Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton is “unhappy” with his difficult car after Friday Practice for 2022 Canadian Grand Prix.
Having struggled with back pain throughout last weekend’s Azerbaijan Grand Prix, Hamilton endured a tough start to the Canadian GP weekend as he finished eighth in FP1 then 13th in FP2, of which he was 1.294 seconds off the pace in the latter session.
Hamilton however isn’t too fussed by the disappointing results as he explained: “It was pretty much like every Friday, experimenting with lots of things. We tried a new floor on my car this morning which didn’t really work and it seems a lot of things we try on this car struggle to work.”
The Brit proceeded to add that he and his teammate – George Russell had “experimented with very different set ups” on their cars in FP2, in order to discover which set-up works yet he feels that any attempt to make improvements makes the W13 “unhappy” to drive.
Kerbs also proved a challenge for Hamilton because the “stiff” set-up necessitated riding the kerbs yet his Mercedes car goes flying upon even a slight touch of the kerbs.
Hamilton though is a seven-time Canadian GP winner but he is dissatisfied with the car more this year than on any other visit, as he said: “It’s not the Montreal that I’m used to and that I’ve driven throughout my career, it’s the worst I’ve felt any car here so I’m hoping we make some solid progress overnight.”
Russell however is only driving in Canada for the second time in his F1 career and described Circuit Gilles Villeneuve as a “fun” and “old-school” to drive amidst its various challenges, especially when “bumping over the kerbs.”
Unlike Hamilton, Russell finished sixth and seventh across both sessions respectively but he feels that Mercedes remain “quite a way off the pace to the front two teams”, whilst acknowledging that Alpine’s Fernando Alonso and Aston Martin’s Sebastian Vettel are also threats.
Russell however agreed with Hamilton in that their W13 cars are stiff on a “very bumpy” track surface as he further described the car’s stiffness as “pretty brutal.”
FP2 saw a split in set-up experimentation between both drivers but Russell believes that their decision to explore different set-ups will enable the team “to find a happy medium between the two overnight.”