The success achieved by Lewis Hamilton at the end of the last one Qatar Grand Prix allowed the Englishman to reduce his disadvantage in the championship standings to 8 points from Max Verstappen, doing so after a race conducted from the first to the last lap. The number 44 of Mercedes, in fact, never lost the leadership after starting from pole position, not only being able to put the signature on the fastest lap of the race, instead, by his direct opponent in the fight for the title. A success, the seventh of the British season, which allowed the reigning champion to assert himself also on the Losail circuit, never before faced by the great majority of the drivers on the track. In addition to the qualities of the driver, the key to this victory also lies in the setup of the German car, explained in detail by the Mercedes Technical Director. Andrew Shovlin.
Once the test in Qatar was over, the English engineer analyzed the greater balance of Hamilton’s car in the fast turns, such as to allow a considerable advantage over direct Austrian rivals: “If you think about it – said Shovlin – lap time is basically obtained thanks to a combination of straights, where the drivers exploit acceleration to the maximum, and cornering performance. On some tracks we tackled recently, we had an advantage over Red Bull on the straight, while in the corners we were on par. In Qatar, on the other hand, exactly the opposite happened: we were at the same level on the straight, but faster in the corners. We can analyze two areas to understand how such a thing could have happened: the first is that inherent to downforce. Our package worked very well in Losail, which allowed us to achieve a good top speed. The second is the balancing of the car, which we fine-tune through mechanical modifications to the front wing, springs and bars. Thanks to these refinements, the drivers were very satisfied with the stability when entering the corners, such as to be able to tackle it at high speed. Try it again – he added – it was also seen in the Hamilton lap which earned him pole position ”.
In conclusion, Shovlin finally focused on the motor, confirming that the one used in Losail was not the same as the one used in Brazil: “In Losail we used one older power unit – He admitted – and being less fresh, it also has less power. We did it because this track had a few straights and a lot of curves, which didn’t allow you to push full throttle for most of the lap. Compared to the two remaining circuits on the calendar, the power obtained here from the engine is much more contained. This means that in Saudi Arabia and Abu Dhabi we will be able to exploit as much power as possible. A fantastic challenge is emerging, and we are feeling fit after these three consecutive appointments. The car’s performance gives us confidence to be able to fight for pole and victory, which is what we need to do. We are excited and eager to be able to take home these two titles “.
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