Lewis Hamilton: “I’ve enjoyed driving here today”


Lewis Hamilton - Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

Lewis Hamilton was happy with his performance on the opening day of the European Grand Prix.

The Mercedes AMG PETRONAS driver had a great start to his weekend after topping the time sheets in Free Practice 1 with a time of 1:46.435 on the Supersoft compound. He finished the session nearly four tenths quicker than team-mate Nico Rosberg, although the session didn’t end too well for the world champion after flat-spotting his tyres during a longer run late on.

For Free Practice 2, Hamilton set a fastest lap time of 1:44.223 to top the time sheets at the Baku City Circuit, improving on his FP1 time by over two seconds as track conditions continued to evolve, with the Briton again outpacing  Rosberg by well over six tenths of a second.

After completing his first practice sessions in Baku, the Briton believes the Grand Prix weekend is going to be tough for everyone.

“A good day for me and a nice way to start the weekend,” said Hamilton. “The track isn’t easy – not because the layout is particularly difficult to learn but because it’s very slippery out there.

“It’s quite Monaco-esque in terms of braking and how close the barriers are – but you’re arriving at much higher speeds. Otherwise it’s like a mixture of Valencia and Sochi with the smooth track surface and the style of the corners themselves.

“It’s a real challenge and I think it’s going to be tough for everyone over the weekend. It takes a lot of focus, which is something I like. I’ve enjoyed driving here today.”