Lewis Hamilton’s Seat Issue In Imola Wasn’t “Worse Than It Looked” – Mercedes

Published 11/05/2020, 1:06 AM EST
Formula One F1 – Emilia Romagna Grand Prix – Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari, Imola, Italy – Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton celebrates on the podium after winning the race Pool via Reuters/Miguel Medina


Lewis Hamilton had a superb last race weekend in Imola and helped Mercedes to their seventh constructors’ title. Even though he did get some fortune along the way, Hamilton was largely untroubled after Bottas’ pit stop.

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However, there are small things in the bigger picture of things that do go amiss. Hamilton’s seat had become a bit of a talking point even before the race had begun.

The suspicion, prior to the formation lap in the race, was that something ‘broke’ on Lewis Hamilton’s seat. However, Mercedes have moved to reveal the details of the adjustment that the Briton wanted on the component.

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Lewis Hamilton did not have a major problem with his seat

The team’s track engineer director, Andrew Shovlin, spoke about how Hamilton had had a different seating configuration in practice and qualifying. He explained how it just needed a tweak in the race, so it did not prove to be a hassle later, heading into the race.

Speaking in the post-race debrief, he elaborated on the issue revolving around the seat. “When he got in and pressed the brake pedal, there was bit of movement in the seat.”

“So all that you saw the guys checking on the grid was they just jumped Lewis out, pulled the seat out. And they were checking everything was tight.”

“Not a major problem and certainly worse than it looked, where we had someone running out to the grid with a spare seat. That was just as a precaution in case we couldn’t get this all tightened and back to how it is normally.” concluded Shovlin.

Hamilton picked up his 93rd career race win at Imola

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Although the seat fitting did not trouble him during the race, tires degradation was always a huge risk. Many teams observed the burnout of their compounds. However, Hamilton, out front, managed his tires exceptionally well.

Formula One F1 – Emilia Romagna Grand Prix – Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari, Imola, Italy – Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton in action during the race Pool via Reuters/Luca Bruno

He had stayed out despite Valtteri Bottas pitting one-thirds of the race in, and wanted to build a time gap. Owing to the virtual safety car coming out, the pit stop task played into the hands of the defending champion.

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The racing action will now move to Istanbul, Turkey for the all-important Turkish GP on November 15. For winning this race could very well see Hamilton crowned drivers’ champion for the seventh time in his career.

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Bhargav Gopal

927 articles

Hailing from Bengaluru, Bhargav is an F1 and NASCAR author for EssentiallySports. He is a huge fan of Max Verstappen and Red Bull Racing. Bhargav also has an MBA in Sports Management from the Symbiosis School of Sports Sciences, Pune.

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