Lewis Hamilton says there is some concern over Mercedes’ reliability after he was forced to stop on Thursday with an engine issue, just one of a number of breakdowns for Mercedes-powered cars.
Whilst Racing Point has enjoyed strong reliability, Mercedes and Williams have been beset by problems during the second week of testing, with the latter on its third power unit already.
Meanwhile the factory team completed just 14 laps during Thursday’s afternoon session after Hamilton was forced to shutdown his engine and spent the remainder of the day in the garage.
Over the winter Mercedes revealed that it had pushed the performance of its engine and encountered some issues during dyno testing, but was confident it had resolved them.
Speaking on Friday, Hamilton described the second week as “not perfect”, but is confident it will be OK for the season-opening race in Australia.
“It’s a concern yeah for sure. Normally in this pre-season testing we’re much more confident in the reliability so it’s not been perfect for us.
“I think we’re on our second engine already. It’s definitely not an easy or relaxed scenario for us but I have every confidence in the guys back in the factory that they will analyse and do the best they can in the next two weeks to make sure we start off on the right foot.”
Nonetheless, Hamilton is at least confident in the performance and speed of the car.
“It’s better than last year’s car, which is the same for everybody. It’s an evolution of last year’s car. So we all should generally have more downforce and it just feels like a continuation of what I drove last year.
“I have no idea where we stand compared to others, the team will probably have a better idea than that. I don’t know where everybody else is, I think I understand the car well so I’m comfortable and confident in terms of getting in the car for Melbourne and knowing that I’ll be able to attack and extract the most from it but whether that’s going to be enough to be ahead of others, we’ll find out.”