Hamilton surprised by Mercedes performance deficit

Mercedes endured a difficult weekend in Spielberg as they slipped behind the McLaren of Lando Norris.

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Lewis Hamilton has attributed Mercedes’ underwhelming performance at the Austrian Grand Prix purely to a shortfall in his own performance.

Hamilton fell two places from fifth on the grid to seventh during the race, as he was surpassed by McLaren’s Lando Norris and Aston Martin’s Fernando Alonso finishing just above teammate George Russell.

Mercedes’ showing was less than impressive, particularly after the team had demonstrated promising improvement in the recent races, owing to a significant upgrade introduced in Monaco.

“McLaren and Lando did a great job today, McLaren were super quick,” Hamilton told media.

“Wasn’t expecting them to be as fast as they were but we weren’t expecting to be as slow as we were either.

“This track just highlighted some areas for us to work on. Not the greatest of days.

“The way the car felt doesn’t surprise me.” 

‘Step backwards’

Russell said after the race that Mercedes’ performance regressed at the Austrian GP, where their two drivers ended the race in the seventh and eighth.

Throughout the weekend, the team had grappled with setup challenges and car-related problems, which resulted in a pace that fell short of posing a serious challenge to front-runners Red Bull and Mercedes.

“The pace was really not what we expected it to be. We have a lot to understand, because we took a big step backwards. And Lando and McLaren were a big surprise for us, so they cleary got it right” Russell told media after the race.

“We have a fast car in certain circumstances. And we just need to understand why we didn’t this weekend.”

Where is the next F1 2023 race?

With the F1 circus finished in Austria, we move on to the 2023 British Grand Prix which will be held at Silverstone in Northamptonshire, England over the weekend of July 7-9.

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