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Lewis Hamilton

Hamilton offers thoughts on Mercedes progression

With Mercedes seeming to close the gap on Ferrari and Red Bull in recent races, Lewis Hamilton hopes to be able to fight for wins before the season is out.

Hamilton Austria
To news overview © RN365/Michael Potts

Lewis Hamilton admits he is hoping to see his Mercedes team in contention for race wins this year.

After seven years of almost unbroken success with the Silver Arrows, Hamilton endured an uncharacteristically tough start to 2022, with his W13 struggling badly with porpoising and bouncing.

In recent races, however, there have been signs that Mercedes have closed the gap to the pace-setting Red Bulls and Ferraris, with Hamilton finishing third in the last three races and leading several laps of the British Grand Prix.

With Mercedes having won two of the last three French Grands Prix, Hamilton said he was hopeful of a good showing at Paul Ricard this weekend.

"Every weekend we are hoping to improve for sure," Hamilton told media, including RacingNews365.com.

"We're constantly making changes to the car, so I'm hoping that we discover something this weekend that helps us creep a little bit further forward.

"But in general, this has been a decent race for us, so I hope it's the same this weekend."

Hamilton: "We're constantly adding performance"

Though Mercedes are yet to win a race so far in 2022, Hamilton added that he was pleased with the recent developments to the W13 that have seen the Silver Arrows narrow the gap to the leading teams.

"It's been really positive to have some consistency come back in, as I was saying earlier, and bit by bit you're getting a little bit more comfortable in the car," he explained.

"We're constantly adding performance, we're constantly progressing forwards and there's a lot to come in the next races, so I'm excited about that.

"In [Austria] we were only a few tenths off the lead guys in qualifying, so I think slowly we're getting closer.

"The gap may be bigger in some tracks, but I hope that I get to be a bit more in the battle [for the lead] sometime soon."

			© XPB
	© XPB

Hamilton to make 300th Grand Prix start

The French Grand Prix also represents a personal landmark for Hamilton, who is set to become only the sixth driver in F1 history to start 300 Grands Prix.

The Briton will join Kimi Raikkonen [350], Fernando Alonso [345], Rubens Barrichello [322], Michael Schumacher and Jenson Button [both 306] in making a triple century of Grand Prix starts at Paul Ricard, though the seven-time World Champion initially claimed he was unaware of the milestone.

"I didn't even know that," Hamilton said when told of his impending 300th race.

"It doesn't make any difference. I feel great."

Asked what advice he would give to a younger version of himself during his debut F1 season in 2007, Hamilton replied: "Just make the most of time. Time is so precious.

"When you're a little bit younger, you feel like you're going to live forever and that you've got all the time in the world.

"And I would just say time is precious, so just maximise every moment you get with family with friends, create memories, that’s the most important thing."

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