Aston Martin ‘one step ahead’ of Mercedes in Canadian GP

Lewis Hamilton has explained where Mercedes struggled at Formula 1’s 2023 Canadian Grand Prix and reckons the upgrades have taken rival Aston Martin “a little bit further”.

Completing the podium behind seven-time world champion Fernando Alonso and dominant race winner Max Verstappen, he claimed Red Bull’s 100th championship win in 9.57 seconds.

Hamilton enjoyed a strong launch and initially pounced on front-row starter Alonso in the first corner.

He then progressed through the first round of pitstops – notably escaping any penalty for an unsafe release that forced the Aston Martin driver to hit the brakes.

Alonso continued to chase and was able to regain second place with the help of TRS at the last chicane on lap 22 of 70.

Hamilton managed to close to within two seconds during the final, with Alonso reducing his lap time to secure second place.

With the low-speed corners that dominated the Montreal lap, Hamilton reckoned Mercedes lost the AMR23, which sported new sidepod bodywork and a revised platform this weekend.

He said: “Unfortunately, we didn’t have the pace today. This weekend, we know it’s not our strongest round, especially in the low-speed corners where we struggle.

“That’s where I lost to Fernando and Max, on the drag of Turn 2, all the corners.

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG, 3rd, celebrates with his team at Parc Ferme

Photo: Glenn Dunbar / Motorsport films

“But we still have a lot of work to do to add more rear downforce to the car and add a bit more performance.

“But like I said we’re moving away and I’m sure we’ll get there at some point.

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“Max was a little bit off. But I think our pace was a little bit closer today. So, we’re going in the right direction.”

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Seven-time F1 champion Hamilton said it was an “honour” to share the podium with fellow world champion Alonso and Verstappen, who said the Aston Martin was “a little step ahead” of his Mercedes team throughout the Canadian. Round.

He continued: “Honestly, it’s been a great weekend for us. I think we’re slowly pulling away. I think Astons made a little bit of progress this weekend when they added improvements.

“But we’re working on bringing some more forward.”

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