Four time world champion Lewis Hamilton is delighted with the speed of this year’s Mercedes W09 through the fast corners 11 and 12 on the Albert Park track in Australia where he did not even use the brakes.
The new 2018 F1 carsare even faster than the already-fast 2017 cars thanks to the softer tyres and the natural development of the car. Although drivers and teams have just finished the first two free practices of the new F1 season, Hamilton is full of praise for the performance of the new Mercedes in fast corners 11 and 12.
Hamilton was the fastest at both free practices in Melbourne and thus started his championship defence in a best possible way.
“In the first race you never know what’s waiting for you, you do not know how you will feel physically, how the tyres will react on the track, but today we started on the front foot, we went through everything we needed,” said Hamilton, winner of the Australian GP in 2008 and 2015.
“In the second practice, the gaps have shrunk, but this contributes to excitement. For me, it’s even more challenging to try to squeeze even more out of the car.”
“Tyres definitely did not have the same problems as in Barcelona where they were blistering and everything seemed a lot more normal.”
“The car is much faster than it was last year and it looks better on all parts of the track.”
“Turns 11 and 12 are crazy, we do not even brake into those bends, it’s insane.”
“It’s going to rain tomorrow and on Sunday as far as I’m aware. I’ve not driven in the rain yet on these tyres, so that’ll be interesting.”
Hamilton chases fifth consecutive pole position in Australia and sixth in total after starting from pole in 2008, 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017.