Hamilton downbeat after difficult Friday in Miami

Mercedes struggled for pace during second practice at the Miami GP

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Lewis Hamilton was downbeat following Friday’s practice sessions for the Miami Grand Prix.

Hamilton, who had looked strong in the proceeding Australian and Azerbaijan GP, showed strong pace in FP1, finishing second fastest, but in FP2, Mercedes struggled for pace, putting both cars out of the top six.

“Same as every weekend, we’re a second down,” Hamilton told media after second practice. “It’s a great weekend it’s a great place to be theirs lots of positives it’s just we’re not particularly quick.

“We’re just trying lots of different things. FP1 looked good, and then to come into FP2, and the true pace comesout, it’s a kick in the guts, so it’s a little bit difficult to take sometimes.

“It’s ok, we’ll just keep on working. We’ll regroup tonight and see if we can make some set-up changes [and] get the car in the sweet spot.”

W14 a carbon copy of W13 without porpoising 

The sudden drop in pace between FP1 and FP2, coupled with a new surface at Miami, have made things even trickier for Hamilton, who found little grip during Friday’s running.

With an ill-handling W14 back to its pre-Australia level of performance, Mercedes go into Saturday’s Qualifying session unsure of where they stand in the pecking order.

Melbourne was night and day difference,” explained Hamilton. “Much nicer to drive, Baku felt better than here also,I think maybe [it’s] the heat or the balance we have at the moment.

“So I am going to stay optimistic and hopeful that we can get the car in a better place tomorrow and maybe be a couple of steps up.

“The grip is quite low on this new circuit, particularly for the rear end it’s very high [degrediation] today, so a lot of sliding for a lot of people, including me.

“But it feels like, apart from last year we had the bouncing, it generally feels like we’re racing pretty much the same car and so that’s the difficult thing.”

Ed Spencer
FIA accredited journalist
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