Lewis Hamilton claims P3 was the best finish his team could have possibly gotten at the end of the 2022 Bahrain Grand Prix. The Briton managed to secure a podium finish at the season opener despite being off the pace when compared to Red Bull and Ferrari.
The 2022 season opener has exceeded all expectations. What seemed to be an easy second place for Max Verstappen soon turned into horror as his Red Bull Powertrain car developed issues as the race went on. After a late safety car effectively closed the gap between all drivers, the Dutchman’s car developed issues and had to be retired on the penultimate lap.
Seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton managed to put his Mercedes in P3 after Sergio Perez’s engine shut down unexpectedly heading into turn 1. Upon achieving yet another podium, the Briton claimed the result was unexpected and that P3 was the best his team could have placed, given their current pace. In the post-race interview with Martin Brundle, he said:
“It was really such a difficult race. We struggled through practice. This was really the best result we could have got, and of course it was unfortunate for the other two drivers. But we did the best we could and we are grateful for these points.”
Lewis Hamilton “hoping” new parts will help Mercedes match Ferrari’s pace
With Ferrari looking like the team to beat this season, Hamilton is hoping that the new parts likely to come in can help fix the intense porpoising problem the team has been plagued with all the way from pre-season testing. When asked about his hopes for the future, Lewis Hamilton told Brundle:
“Haha, I am hoping. I know the guys are working really hard back at the factory. I know it is not going to be a really quick turn-around but we all know as a team…We’ve been the best unified team for so long and I know that they will just keep their head down and keep working. There’s a long-long way to go.”
Lewis Hamilton is right in that there is a long way to go for the season to end, with the 2022 edition of the sport set to feature 23 races – more than ever before.
Meanwhile, Ferrari dominated from lights-out, as Charles Leclerc instantly demonstrated his true race pace over Max Verstappen’s Red Bull. Carlos Sainz passed Verstappen during the closing stages of the race to give Ferrari their first 1-2 finish since 2019, and coincidentally also their first race win since then.
With the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix set to return next weekend, fans of Ferrari and Mercedes can hold their heads high in confidence, hoping that their favorite team will get ahead of the other.