Mercedes Formula-1 driver and seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain issued an ominous warning to his rivals, especially Red Bull’s Max Verstappen ahead of the new season, saying his “team don’t make mistakes”.
Verstappen miraculously won the last F1 race of 2021 to deny Hamilton the world title under controversial circumstances but the 37-year-old Brit isn’t short of confidence when it comes to Mercedes’ chances of clinching more silverware in 2022.
While Hamilton missed out on a record eighth drivers’ crown in 2021, which would have broken the tie with German great Michael Schumacher, his team clinched its own record-extending eighth consecutive constructors’ championship.
With 2022 set to witness arguably the biggest rule changes in the sport’s history, Hamilton when asked ahead of the pre-season running in Barcelona whether he feared Mercedes’ crown might slip amid all the modifications in the new season, he gave a firm rebuttal.
“Why would I ever think that? We’ve won eight (titles) in a row. Why would I feel that way?” said Hamilton on Sunday evening.
“My team don’t make mistakes. Of course, there is always a risk, but we don’t make mistakes. There’s a lot of very intelligent people back at the factory and I trust them 100 per cent. Whatever we start with today, whether it’s good or bad, we’ll work through it. We’ve always had a great development plan and workforce,” said Hamilton to formula1.com.
There are reports that the modifications to the car design could give Red Bull the advantage in the new season, but Hamilton said his team will “work through it”.
“Whatever we start with today, whether it’s good or bad, we’ll work through it. I think every year’s exciting, but of course (in) previous years, it was an evolution of the previous year’s car; in this one, it’s completely brand-new.
“Of course, I’ve seen the designs of our car over several months, but now to see everyone’s car out there, you’re trying to get a close eye to see what is different, if there is anything, why certain teams have chosen a certain route in terms of sidepod design, front wing and the floor.
“So I think it’s the most exciting (pre-season), and again, you have absolutely no idea where you stand.”