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Lewis Hamilton

Mercedes must 'accept' reality after Miami exit - Hamilton

The seven-time world champion was only 12th fastest in sprint qualifying in Miami.

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Lewis Hamilton believes Mercedes "have to accept" its performance in Miami Grand Prix sprint qualifying, after failing to make SQ3.

Hamilton made a minor mistake on his second push lap in the second segment, tapping the wall at Turn 16, and fell in 12th place, as team-mate George Russell also failed to navigate to the final part of the session, taking 11th.

Both cars were within 0.050s of Nico Hulkenberg in 10th place, but Mercedes failed to get one car into SQ3 for the first time since the 2023 Austrian Grand Prix sprint.

Hamilton has often tried to use differing experiments in the set-up in 2024 to try and eke performance from the W15, but he denied that this was the case on this occasion.

"There have been no more experiments, it's just been trying to make the car work," Hamilton explained.

"I feel like we extracted everything from the car, and that is just the pace.

"We just have to accept it that for the moment, it was seven-tenths off."

With the top eight earning points in the sprint, Hamilton was not optimistic of adding to his tally of 19 points from the five grands prix and one sprint held to date in 2024, citing the difficulty in overtaking.

"I felt really good in FP1, and then in [sprint qualifying], it didn't feel terrible, it is just that we are seven-tenths off," he added.

"That's just the pace of our car.

"I think the sprint race is going to be tough, I mean we are in 12th, so I don't expect a huge amount from there to be honest - it is not an easy circuit to overtake on or follow, so we will just try to step into the points if we can."


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RESULTS 2024 F1 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix - Qualifying