Lewis Hamilton has his sights set on giving former team-mate Fernando Alonso “hell” on Sunday at the 2023 Canadian Grand Prix, in what looks set to be a scrap for second place.
The Mercedes driver has enjoyed a solid weekend in Montreal at the Circuit de Gilles-Villeneuve, a venue he’s claimed victory at seven times.
Whilst an eighth victory on Sunday looks like too big a challenge, second is definitely on the cards, as a result of the 38-year-old having qualified third.
Hamilton initially finished what was a wet Q3 in fourth; however, a three-place grid drop for Nico Hulkenberg has promoted the Briton to P3.
As well as being a place higher than he was supposed to start, Hamilton will now be starting Sunday’s race from the clean side of the grid, something which could be highly beneficial when the lights go out.
With Max Verstappen on pole for a third consecutive race, Hamilton is expecting the Dutchman to cruise to victory.
Beating Alonso is something Hamilton is targeting though, with the Spaniard starting from P2.
Hamilton is planning on giving Alonso “hell” on Sunday, in what looks set to be an enthralling battle.
“We are ahead of the Ferraris. Max will be gone most likely, But if I can hold onto Alonso and give him hell that’s what I’ll do,” Hamilton insisted, as reported by The Mirror.
Hamilton certainly used all of his experience in Q3 to put his W14 towards the front of the grid, something which will help his chances of a podium finish.
He was lucky to actually make it into Q3 in the first place, after finishing Q2 in 10th.
Had it not rained in the closing minutes of Q2, then Hamilton would’ve likely been eliminated; however, luck was on his side.
Hamilton discussed what the conditions were like after qualifying, and how Mercedes can “move forwards” on Sunday with George Russell starting alongside him.
“I think most people underestimate how hard it was out there for everybody,” Hamilton said.
“It was really hard to keep the car on track and deliver when the time counts. It was very very slippery, it was really difficult to generate temperature in the tyres.
“But, yeah, that’s a great result for George and I as well. Hopefully from there we can move forwards. We should be in a much better position for race pace. Our race pace is often better and I’m hoping it is tomorrow. It’s difficult to gauge yesterday because we did our long run at the beginning of the session when the track was a lot slower.”