Hamilton encouraged by long-run progress

Hamilton encouraged by long-run progress

18 April 2017 – Lewis Hamilton believes that Mercedes made significant progress with its long-run performance throughout the first day of in-season testing at the Bahrain International Circuit.

Mercedes locked out the front row of the grid for Sunday's Grand Prix, but was beaten to victory by main rival Ferrari, which displayed impressive race pace through the weekend.

Despite a morning stoppage, due to a suspected electrical glitch, Hamilton completed 97 laps during Tuesday's running at Sakhir, also posting the fastest time of the day (a 1:31.358).

Reflecting on the day of running, the three-time World Champion commented: "It was tricky with it being so hot and very gusty but we still managed to get through plenty of work.

"Our focus was on advancing our understanding of the tyres and also the rear of the car so that we can improve our long runs – particularly during the race and on the Super Soft compound.

"We came here with a specific goal, so it was positive to get on top of that with the team."

Hamilton also expects the Russian Grand Prix to be more favourable to Mercedes.

"Sochi is a smoother track and less abrasive on the tyres, so they can go quite a long way," he said.

"Hopefully we can rely on the pace of our car there rather than our use of the tyres."

Bottas will take over for the second and final day of running on Wednesday.

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