Lewis Hamilton didn’t have the best day to begin his fight back against the two recent results, which went against him.
Despite claiming repeatedly that Monaco was behind him in answer to the barrage of questions in yesterday’s driver press conference, Lewis doesn’t appear quite at ease with himself.
Hamilton tweeted on Thursday
This had the hall marks of a pithy response from Lewis to whoever he feels is ‘hating’ him, and was typical of Hamilton’s heart on the sleeve approach to life.
Yet Lewis today appeared to be struggling on track at times. Of course he was quickest in both practice sessions, which bodes well for the one lap shootout tomorrow. But he made a number of uncharacteristic errors.
At the hairpin in FP1, Hamilton had a seemingly innocuous spin. Indeed, the track was green and others made the same mistake too.
Then in FP2 when catching a Lotus, he out braked himself into the final chicane and had to weave his way through the new route marked by Charlie Whiting before returning to the circuit.
A few laps later, Lewis violently launched his car across the left hand curb of the same chicane, landing his car awkwardly on two wheels before bouncing the floor fully on the sausage curb.
The rains came and Mercedes sent their drivers out on intermediate tyres. Nico Hulkenberg commented, “it probably wasn’t a good idea”, because by the time Lewis reached the hairpin when braking, he aquaplaned straight on. Almost in almost in slow motion, Hamilton’s W06 thudded into the tyre barrier.
The loss of a front wing is no big deal to Mercedes, though as the recovery vehicle pulled the embedded car from the tyre barrier, it appeared to damage the rear wing.
Lewis has experienced difficult Friday’s at many Grand Prix weekends and then returned in top form the following day.
Tomorrow is when it matters, and of Mercedes have turned their engine down by about a second a lap before qualifying – as has been their want, then the apparently resurgent Ferrari’s and Nico Rosberg will have their hands full containing Hamilton on the circuit where he took his first win.