Hamilton laments Q2 exit after qualifying P13: “We need to be better with our timing”

Spread the love

Lewis Hamilton was among the drivers that had a difficult qualifying session in Miami.

Photo credit: Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team

Both of the Mercedes drivers appeared to struggle for pace throughout Q1 and Q2. Although George Russell ultimately managed to make it into Q3, Hamilton failed to put a clean representative lap together, and later found himself caught out by poor timing on the team’s part.

“We left that way too late, guys,” he told his race engineer over the radio after being eliminated in Q2. He will line up thirteenth on the grid for the race.

Hamilton went into more detail in his post-qualifying interview: “It was a difficult session. We’re not that quick, so we really needed perfect laps. It was difficult to get into a rhythm for us (…)”

“There was a couple of decent moments in there where I thought the car was good. Q1, end of the run, the time was not too bad. We were at the back end of the top ten, of course.”

“And then, just in that last run, I was at the back of the queue and tried to get the temperatures into the tyres. Everyone slowed into the last corner, so I lost all temperature in the tyres and couldn’t do the lap.”

Hamilton believes Mercedes need to change their approach and be more proactive in qualifying as their current car lacks the performance to guarantee a Q3 appearance.

“When you’re fast you can be more relaxed, you can go at the last minute and take your time. You know it’s likely you’re going to make it easily into Q3, for example,” he said.

“We know it was very hard and there was a 50:50 chance we could get into Q3 so I just think we need to be better with our timing.”

“I’ll try and get my head down [on Sunday] and see what I can do. Thirteenth to God knows where.”

The Brit admitted that wet conditions could shake things up and create opportunities for recovery in the race.

“Hoping that the Florida heavens are going to open and we’re going to have some rain,” he said. “I don’t know how lucky I’ll be, but the rain would make it exciting. They’ve shortened the DRS so the overtaking might be worse tomorrow, like it was in the last race, but I think I’ve set the car up in a pretty decent place.”

“It’s not going to be easy to overtake the cars ahead of me but maybe on strategy I can progress, try and get in the top 10 and get some points.”

“I don’t think any of us have driven in the rain here so we’d have two laps to the grid and we’d have to learn as we go, which is exciting. Ultimately we’re not where we want to be. I wish we had a car that was able to contend for wins and so it’s tough for us but we just keep our heads down and pushing.”