Hamilton boosted by “one of the most positive days” for Mercedes

Lewis Hamilton called the penultimate day of testing in Barcelona a “positive day” for Mercedes after the team made progress on tyre management and understanding the W10.

Hamilton boosted by “one of the most positive days” for Mercedes

While again there was no attempt to explore the limits on Pirelli’s softest compounds – that is on the schedule for Friday – the new car ran many miles, with Hamilton completing 85 laps in the morning, and Valtteri Bottas 96 in the afternoon. The Brackley team was also able to address the graining issues which proved problematic earlier in the week.

“Today has been a good day,” said Hamilton. “Lots of mileage, which is great for us. It has probably been one of the most positive days for us. We’ve really learned quite a lot.

“We’ve been able to apply our learnings from the morning to the afternoon, so I’m looking forward to seeing how Valtteri felt, but the car looked like it was in a better place. Our understanding of the W10 is continuously growing, so it was definitely a positive day.”

Bottas, who was critical of the car’s handling in week one, said progress had been made, but that it was impossible to judge where the team was in the competitive order in relation to its title rivals.

“We got a lot of laps in today which is always good,” said Bottas. “I did a race simulation which was interrupted by the red flag, but it confirmed the progress we’ve made since last week.

“We're getting more and more prepared for Melbourne, but there’s room for improvement and still a few question marks on where we stand compared to the competition.”

Bottas added: “We need to maximise the last day of testing as it will be our final chance to try out a few things ahead of Melbourne.”

Technical director James Allison, who yesterday made clear his frustration about the graining, said the tyres were not an issue today.

“Today was a very productive day,” he said. “Either side of a trouble-free race distance we did a lot of good investigative work and in the race simulation itself, unlike yesterday where we failed to make the tyres live, we had good tyre behaviour across all three stints.

“We look forward to tomorrow where we will be investigating the range of tyre compounds and focusing more on single-lap pace.”

Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes-AMG F1 W10

Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes-AMG F1 W10
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Photo by: Steven Tee / Motorsport Images

Charles Leclerc, Ferrari SF90 leads Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG F1 W10

Charles Leclerc, Ferrari SF90 leads Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG F1 W10
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Photo by: Jerry Andre / Motorsport Images

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG F1 W10

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG F1 W10
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Photo by: Jerry Andre / Motorsport Images

Toto Wolff, Mercedes AMG F1 Director of Motorsport watches Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG F1 W10

Toto Wolff, Mercedes AMG F1 Director of Motorsport watches Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG F1 W10
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Photo by: Jerry Andre / Motorsport Images

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG F1 W10

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG F1 W10
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Photo by: Jerry Andre / Motorsport Images

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1
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Photo by: Jerry Andre / Motorsport Images

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG F1 W10

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG F1 W10
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Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG F1 W10

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG F1 W10
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Photo by: Glenn Dunbar / Motorsport Images

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG F1 W10

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG F1 W10
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Photo by: Zak Mauger / Motorsport Images

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG F1 W10

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG F1 W10
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Photo by: Andy Hone / Motorsport Images

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