After having such a torrid first day of testing at the Bahrain International Circuit, Lewis Hamilton will be relieved to have got some laps under his belt, albeit less than they would’ve hoped for at the start of the day. The third and final day of pre-season testing, will be crucial for the team based in Brackley if they are to maintain their advantage ahead of the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix.
Hamilton felt that the day was pretty good, especially compared to the first day of the test. The British driver felt that the track didn’t have much grip, with Hamilton spinning into the gravel at one point during the test. The balance was still better but there is lots to work to do ahead of the final day of the test.
“It was OK, better than yesterday – not so much sand. The track doesn’t have a huge amount of grip and long runs aren’t the easiest but at least the sun was out! The balance was slightly improved compared to yesterday but we’re still working through certain things.”
With the wind shifting to a different side of the track, driving around the track felt very different allowing the British driver to explore areas of the track he wasn’t able to yesterday. As with his team-mate Valtteri Bottas, Hamilton feels that the rear-end was particularly loose with the change in regulation for 2021 most likely being the cause of this.
“For today the wind did a 180° shift so the track was very different, and you could push in certain places where you couldn’t yesterday. It was very gusty as I found out at turn 13 and the rear doesn’t feel particularly great with this new regulation change but we’re still trying to find the sweet spot.”
Having managed to only complete 58 laps, Hamilton has had a lot less time in the car compared to previous years pre-season tests, but he’s trying to make the most of the limited time available to him and doesn’t feel the need to worry ahead of the fastly approaching season start.
“I’ve done 60-odd laps today and Valtteri missed a lot of track time yesterday so it’s not a lot compared to other tests we’ve had but we’re trying to be as effective as we can. We have less mileage than some of the others like Red Bull but we’re just trying to stick to our programme and manage the laps to try to be efficient. We’re just focusing on understanding the car, there’s no point in getting worried.”