Mercedes bested Ferrari in psychological war – Hamilton

Lewis Hamilton believes he and Mercedes can take credit for putting the pressure on Ferrari in the two Formula 1 teams' psychological "war" for the 2018 title.

Mercedes bested Ferrari in psychological war – Hamilton

Hamilton has won the last four grands prix to build a 67-point lead over Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel and can win his fifth championship at the next race in the United States. 

Vettel's challenge has crumbled thanks to mistakes of his own, such as crashing in Germany and spinning in Italy and Japan, as well as strategic blunders by Ferrari. 

Hamilton said: "Together we [he and Mercedes] can claim credit for applying the pressure and ultimately, maybe, that's what happens in a head-to-head battle with top competitors.

"Even though they are still performing great, one of them can't always perform the same.

"It's a psychological battle and war we're in, and I think it's come from everyone. 

"Everyone has put in 100% and everyone has delivered time and time again. 

"I'm grateful to have delivered and that the team delivered."

Hamilton has won six of the last seven races to overturn the small points lead Vettel enjoyed after the first half of the season.

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W09, leads Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes AMG F1 W09 and Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari SF71H

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W09, leads Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes AMG F1 W09 and Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari SF71H

Photo by: Andy Hone / LAT Images

While he has clearly benefitted from Mercedes hitting its stride just as Ferrari has faltered, Hamilton has played a key part in this run. 

He was gifted victory in Russia last weekend thanks to Mercedes' use of team orders but has established himself comfortably ahead of teammate Valtteri Bottas, who has not outscored the Briton since the Canadian Grand Prix. 

Crucially, Hamilton also bested Vettel wheel-to-wheel in Italy and Russia. 

"I just feel very, very proud of our performance, we've stayed on course with our plan and we're continuing to deliver at the strength and pace we have for a while now," said Hamilton. 

"I said to the engineers, 'I hope you guys feel you've performed at your best', because we really are and we should take note of that and step back for a second. 

"Because we're in it, we do the debrief, we run off to the next thing and then we're back to the factory and onto the next race it's difficult to take a second and acknowledge all the great work that individually we're doing, but also collectively. 

"It's almost like it's a marathon, not a sprint, and when you're running and just run out of stamina to keep up with those that have more. 

"We seem to have more stamina this year, which is a good thing."

shares
comments
Honda not allowed to use update tweak in Japanese GP

Previous article

Honda not allowed to use update tweak in Japanese GP

Next article

Horner: Vettel move on Verstappen "optimistic"

Horner: Vettel move on Verstappen "optimistic"
Load comments
The final throes of Brazil's fleetingly successful F1 team Prime

The final throes of Brazil's fleetingly successful F1 team

Emerson Fittipaldi is better remembered for his Formula 1 world championships and Indianapolis 500 successes than for the spell running his eponymous F1 team. Despite a hugely talented roll call of staff, it was a period of internal strife, limited funding and few results - as remembered by Tim Wright.

Why McLaren's expanding agenda will benefit its F1 resurgence Prime

Why McLaren's expanding agenda will benefit its F1 resurgence

In the 1960s and 1970s, McLaren juggled works entries in F1, sportscars and the Indy 500 while building cars for F3 and F2. Now it’s returning to its roots, expanding into IndyCars and Extreme E while continuing its F1 renaissance. There’s talk of Formula E and WEC entries too. But is this all too much, too soon? Stuart Codling talks to the man in charge.

Formula 1
Oct 17, 2021
How Tsunoda plans to achieve his F1 potential Prime

How Tsunoda plans to achieve his F1 potential

Yuki Tsunoda arrived in grand prix racing amid a whirlwind of hype, which only increased after his first race impressed the biggest wigs in Formula 1. His road since has been rocky and crash-filled, and OLEG KARPOV asks why Red Bull maintains faith in a driver who admits he isn’t really that big a fan of F1?

Formula 1
Oct 15, 2021
The danger of reading too much into F1's clickbait radio messages Prime

The danger of reading too much into F1's clickbait radio messages

OPINION: After Lewis Hamilton responded to reports labelling him 'furious' with Mercedes following his heated exchanges over team radio during the Russian Grand Prix, it provided a snapshot on how Formula 1 broadcasting radio snippets can both illuminate and misrepresent the true situation

Formula 1
Oct 14, 2021
How F1’s pole winner approach undermines drivers Prime

How F1’s pole winner approach undermines drivers

OPINION: Valtteri Bottas is credited with pole position for the 2021 Turkish Grand Prix, despite being beaten in qualifying. This is another example of Formula 1 and the FIA scoring an own goal by forgetting what makes motorsport magic, with the Istanbul race winner also a victim of this in the championship’s recent history

Formula 1
Oct 13, 2021
Turkish Grand Prix driver ratings Prime

Turkish Grand Prix driver ratings

On a day that the number two Mercedes enjoyed a rare day in the sun, the Turkish Grand Prix produced several standout drives - not least from a driver who has hit a purple patch of late

Formula 1
Oct 11, 2021
The hidden factors that thwarted Hamilton's bid for Turkey glory Prime

The hidden factors that thwarted Hamilton's bid for Turkey glory

Starting 11th after his engine change grid penalty, Lewis Hamilton faced a tough task to repeat his Turkish Grand Prix heroics of 2020 - despite making strong early progress in the wet. Instead, his Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas broke through for a first win of the year to mitigate Max Verstappen re-taking the points lead

Formula 1
Oct 11, 2021
How pitstops evolved into an F1 art form Prime

How pitstops evolved into an F1 art form

A Formula 1 pitstop is a rapid-fire blend of high technology and human performance. PAT SYMONDS describes how the science of margin gains makes stops so quick

Formula 1
Oct 10, 2021