Lewis Hamilton says Mercedes are “anxious” to put the W14, their new car for the upcoming Formula 1 season, on track for the first time to “see how it behaves”.
The team launched their 2023 car this morning and will conduct a shakedown test with Hamilton and his team mate George Russell at Silverstone today.
Mercedes are aiming to bounce back from a difficult 2022 season where, after eight consecutive seasons of being world champions they fell to third in the constructors’ standings and Russell was their highest place driver in the standings in fourth place.
“This is the most exciting part of the year,” Hamilton said at the W14 launch. “Being at the factory this past week, seeing from the tub to all these small elements coming together come out of different parts of the factory and you see it come together and everything fits so beautifully.
“You just stand in awe of just seeing how amazing the designers are, the engineers, how much detail they go into when you look into where the engine compartment is, how it all fits in perfectly, the uprights, the wing. Everything.”
Mercedes discovered the ‘porpoising’ problem which plagued the team throughout 2022 during the roll-out of its last new car. This prompted speculation the team would pursue a different design philosophy this year and ditch the radical slim sidepod design of the W13.
However the W14 presented today retains the same narrow configuration of its predecessor. Hamilton admitted he’s keen to see the problem that led to his first win-less season last year has been addressed.
“We’re all anxious to get out there and see how it behaves,” he said. “And also to see where everybody else is.
“The other day I kind of freaked myself out,” he added. “There’s almost eight billion people in the world, and there’s only 20 of us that get to do this, and there’s only two of us that get to drive for this team. So we are so privileged beyond measure.
“This is the most exciting time, for sure, especially with all the difficulties we had last year.”
2023 F1 season
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