Lewis Hamilton praised Mercedes’ power unit department after regaining the lead in the drivers’ championship with victory in the French Grand Prix.
Mercedes delayed the introduction of its updated power unit in Canada two weeks ago, citing a “quality issue,” and Hamilton struggled to fifth place as Sebastian Vettel took a comfortable victory. With the an even more advanced upgrade delivered in time for this weekend’s race at Paul Ricard, Hamilton was able to secure pole position and take the 65th victory of his career, something he says Mercedes High Performance Powertrains played a big role in.
“A fresh engine is always a good thing so after seven races an engine can never be, with the amount that we have to push the engines nowadays with the mileage, there is no way the engine can have the same power as a day one brand new engine,” Hamilton said. “One has 5,000km on it.
“It was great to have a fresh engine as it really put us back in line with everyone else who has fresher engines. It definitely was a positive and the guys did a great job on the engine side of things and the development part.
“If you could see what happens back at the factory at Brixworth, the machine shop and design meeting rooms, it is a team within itself and an incredible machine there that is working to create all these engines for several teams here and to create the best engine in the sport for many years now.”
Hamilton added that the work ethic from his whole team has been a strength this year, having called for improvements in the face of a stern challenge from both Ferrari and Red Bull.
“Every race is a team effort but I think that when you are constructive and criticize yourself, then you take a step back and you approach it with new methods and new determination.
“When you come up with the result this is definitely a great feeling and the whole team will be feeling great after today — they should do, and if they don’t then they need to question themselves as to why. That won’t be the case — everyone will be really happy. There is a long way to go and we need to keep approaching it as we have today.”