Lewis Hamilton ‘very proud’ of Mercedes’ 2023 F1 season as they chase second-place

Lewis Hamilton is 33 points behind Red Bull's Sergio Perez in the F1 drivers' championship.

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Lewis Hamilton insisted he’s very proud of Mercedes‘ 2023 F1 season despite the team reduced to battling for second in the drivers’ and constructors’ championship behind the dominance of Max Verstappen and Red Bull.

Mercedes are 20 points ahead of Ferrari ahead of the 2023 Qatar Grand Prix while Hamilton trails second-place Sergio Perez by 33 points, despite the Mexican taking two wins in the sublime RB19.

It’s after Mercedes abandoned their ‘no-sidepods’ concept at the start of 2023 having predicted they’d be in the championship fight after pre-season testing.

“We’re definitely not comfortably second, Ferrari are putting up a really strong fight,” Hamilton told the press. “They’ve done an amazing job in the last couple of races so it’s gonna be real good battle.

“I’m really excited about this last back half of the season, to see if we can really squeeze more juice out of this car and try and finish ahead of them.

“That’s going to take a real team effort, I’m really proud of where we are considering where we started at the beginning of the year.”

Hamilton: Perez should easily be P2

Lewis Hamilton and Sergio Perez on the podium at the 2022 British GP | Clive Mason/Getty Images

Hamilton also threw some shade on the embattled Perez, who he said should’ve easily locked down second-place in the drivers’ championship with six rounds to go.

Perez won two of the opening five races in 2023 but his form dropped off a cliff from there, and he even endured a run of five grand prix where he failed to reach Q3.

However, Hamilton is still within range of Perez having finally caught and passed Fernando Alonso for third.

“Ultimately it’s dependent on Checo, and Checo‘s performances moving forwards,” Hamilton added. “He should easily have second as, but I’m really proud of where we are and where I’ve managed to get to.

“I’ve been really proud of the race performances so far, of course I want to try and do better and do more. And if we were able to get second that would be amazing, but the main focus is really trying to get second for the team.”

Adam Dickinson
Adam Dickinson
An international multi-award-winning journalist, Adam Dickinson has written for Total-Motorsport.com since June 2022 and also contributes to TNT Sports, Eurosport and the Rugby Paper. He's also had articles published in the Daily Telegraph and several local newspapers, and previously worked for Last-Lap.co.uk and FeederSeries.net in motorsport and graduated with a First-Class Journalism Degree from the University of Sheffield having also studied in Oklahoma. Adam started watching F1 by accident in 2007, catching the last race in Indianapolis, and attended his first race as a journalist at the 2023 British Grand Prix.
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