Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes verdict explains why he’s refusing to sign new contract

Lewis Hamilton has claimed six victories at the Spanish Grand Prix since 2014, but he will likely struggle for a podium this weekend.

Ahead of this weekend’s Spanish Grand Prix, Lewis Hamilton has admitted that Mercedes’ new concept isn’t “the step forward” they were “hoping” for, with it instead just being a small “step in the right direction”.

The Silver Arrows introduced their new concept last weekend at the Monaco Grand Prix, as a result of the cancellation of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.

Whilst Hamilton revealed that he did feel a “little bit more confident” in the W14 at the Circuit de Monaco, he shared that the improvements made weren’t as good as the team “dreamed of”.

With Monaco being so unique though, the Brackley-based team will likely discover just how good their concept is this weekend at the more conventional Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, where pre-season testing has often been held.

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Hamilton hopes the car will “flow” better in Barcelona, to further prove that the team are now on the “right track” to catching Red Bull.

“Well, it’s not the step forward that we were hoping for, the true step forward we’re hoping for is, there’s been around a one-second delta [to Red Bull] in race trim, for example,” Hamilton said ahead of the Spanish GP.

“We haven’t covered that with this step, but it is a step in the right direction.

“What I felt last weekend was I felt a little bit more confident in the car, more ability to be able to commit to the corner.

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“So, I’m hoping that at this track, that’s the same, but hopefully better.

“There’s a lot of medium and high-speed corners. I’m hoping the flow of the car is better [here]. Maybe in following, we can follow closer.

“There’s a huge amount of work that’s gone into this and we’re hoping that it puts us on the right track.

“We’re changing train tracks. But putting us on the track that can lead to that second.

“When you bring upgrades, naturally you should be progressing forwards and the fact is it is an improvement, it’s just not the improvement that we had dreamed of.

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“But it’s one step at a time. I don’t feel any negativity towards it. I’m grateful we have it. Partly, it’s because I understand how much work has gone into making these parts.

“The rush that has gone on, the amount of work, everyone is hugely flat out and really hungry to move the car in the right direction.

“So, I would say that I’m just hopeful that it puts us on a better track that can progress from here on.”