Lewis Hamilton’s ‘irritation’ set to continue despite Monaco upgrades

Toto Wolff has accepted that Mercedes can only make minimal changes to try and appease Lewis Hamilton’s complaints.

Lewis Hamilton has been vocal about his challenges with handling the W14 this season, even accusing the engineers of refusing to listen to him during the winter break.

Continuing with their ‘zero sidepod’ concept, Mercedes have still found themselves far off the pace of their rivals this year.

The Silver Arrows might have found a way to move ahead of Ferrari but they have fallen behind the rising Aston Martin team, which has secured four podiums in five races.

From its poor cornering speed to failures on the straightline, the W14 has a raft of issues that have irked both Hamilton and his teammate George Russell.

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In particular, Hamilton has blamed the poor performance on the driving position, feeling like he is sitting on the front wheels, far further forward than other drivers.

“I don’t know if people know,” Hamilton told reporters in Australia.

“We sit closer to the front wheels than all the other drivers. Our cockpit is too close to the front.

“When you’re driving, you feel like you’re sitting on the front wheels which is one of the worst feelings to feel when you’re driving a car.

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“If you were driving your car at home, and you put the wheels right underneath your legs, you would not be happy when you’re approaching the roundabout!

“So, what that does is it just really changes the attitude of the car and how you perceive its movement. And it makes it harder to predict, compared to when you’re further back and you’re sitting closer, more centre.”

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Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff has addressed these concerns, accepting that Hamilton has made his position clear and the team are listening.

However, due to the constraints of the budget cap, only a mild change can be made, moving the cockpit position five-15 centimetres, which might not fix Hamilton’s issues.

“We’re a little further up and that’s what irritates Lewis, and has irritated him for the past year. We don’t know how much of an impact it has, but you have to take the feedback from the drivers seriously,” Wolff explained.