After yet another rocky start to the F1 season, Mercedes has made it back to the top this weekend with George Russell and Lewis Hamilton setting the second and third-fastest lap times behind the rather dominant Red Bull of Max Verstappen in the qualifying session during the 2023 Australian Grand Prix.
The Briton admitted that he was not expecting to see two Mercs at the top of the time sheet at the end of the session, describing the result as a “dream” for the Silver Arrows.
In a post-qualifying media interaction, the seven-time world champion said:
“This is a totally unexpected. Really proud of the team. George did an amazing job there today so for us to be up on the front two rows in honestly a dream for us. We are all working as hard as we can to get right back up to the front so to be this close to Red Bull is incredible.”
Lewis Hamilton added that he intends to do everything in his power to leverage his starting position on the second row of the grid at the Albert Park Circuit to fight for his first F1 race win since the 2021 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix. He said:
“Hopefully tomorrow we can give them a run for their money and we hope the weather is good. I am super grateful for this position and I am just going to work as hard as I can tomorrow. (My goal) is to get to first. I am going to try and see and I will be hoping like my first day here 2007, Turn One. I don’t know if anybody remembers but hopefully we can do that.”
George Russell was the only Mercedes driver to stand on the top step of the podium in the 2022 F1 season with a dramatic win at the Brazillian Grand Prix. With the two compatriots fighting from the front of the grid and chasing an almost unbeatable Red Bull ahead of them, the Australian Grand Prix will certainly be one to watch out for.
Lewis Hamilton says he sees himself “being with Mercedes” till the end of his F1 career
Lewis Hamilton laid all rumors to rest by confirming that he has no intention of racing for another team in F1 as the Briton admitted that he remains to view the Silver Arrows as his “family”.
Speaking to the media ahead of the Australian Grand Prix, Lewis Hamilton said:
“I continue to feel very much at home as a family. I see myself being in Mercedes until my last day, to be honest. If you look at the legends like Sir Stirling Moss, he was with Mercedes until the end of days [sic], so that’s been the dream for me to one day have that, or I have that, so just continue on with them.”
Describing the relationships he has built within the team over his long, admirable F1 career, the Mercedes driver added:
“Continue to build with the brand, I’ve got some amazing allies within the team, we’ve got great relationships here.”
Lewis Hamilton currently stands fifth in the drivers’ standings with 20 points to his name, ahead of his team-mate George Russell.