Lewis Hamilton has insisted he and Mercedes will not change their battle plan this season despite seeing their competitive advantage in Formula 1 eliminated by Red Bull.
Hamilton has lost his title favourite tag to Max Verstappen, and Mercedes appears to be behind its rivals for the first time in years following changes to the regulations that have benefitted its rivals.
The seven-time champion sees no point in making radical alterations. He said: “Nothing changes for us. We approach every weekend exactly the same - if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
“We’ve had lots of battles with Ferrari [in the past], and I think we just keep our heads down and contribute to do what we do. It’s exciting for all of us that we have such a challenge and it’s one not to shy away from.”
Hamilton said the result at the first race in Bahrain has enabled him to remain “positive” about the season but conceded his rivals have the upper hand at this point in time.
The desert race was run in high temperatures and high winds and could be an anomaly when compared to many of the other tracks on this season’s bumper 23-race calendar.
That has the potential to send the title battle either way and only through the coming races will we see a full picture of the comparative performance between the two teams currently shaping up for a title battle.
Hamilton, for one, is hoping the promise of a fight turns into reality. He added: “I hope it’s all it’s cracked up to be, particularly in a time when we need the best entertainment possible for the fans.
“We’re only into the second race, so I really can’t assume or guess what’s up ahead of us. For me, I just want to be fighting with the best drivers and as close as possible.
“I think [Bahrain] was a very difficult weekend for us. It’s clear that Red Bull has started off really well with a great package and Max is driving really well, so it’s set up for a good season ahead.
“Of course, we don’t know what to expect with the races going forward with different races, different temperatures, different track surfaces. I hope it’s exciting."
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