Lewis Hamilton has hailed the impact of Mercedes’ upgrades to its 2023 Formula 1 challenger, stating they have offered the team a step forward.
Mercedes arrived at the Monaco Grand Prix with a series of car revisions that were originally scheduled to be introduced at the cancelled round from Imola.
Monaco’s unique narrow layout left the Brackley-based squad largely reserved over its judgement of the new parts, with the next round from Barcelona set to offer a clearer answer.
But Hamilton says that the initial understanding appears to be positive.
“It feels like the car has progressed, it has moved forwards,” he said.
“I think next week we’ll get a much better view, in a place where we can really push, with medium and high speed corners, but I think that, overall, it has been a really positive weekend for us.”
Hamilton ended qualifying in sixth place but progressed forward in the grand prix.
Towards the end of the race, the seven-time World Champion found himself in fourth place and contesting for a podium finish.
“It’s a good result,” he said. “Good improvement, overall, as a team I feel we made a good step forward, to finish fourth and fifth in such a tricky race like this one was today, I think it’s a great result,” he said.
“The team did a really great job today with strategy, and I think to get the leapfrog on the Ferrari is awesome.”
Late rain threatened to upend the order, with a number of drivers going into escape roads or tapping the barrier amid the changing conditions.
Providing his perspective, Hamilton said: “It was very, very bad.
“There’s really no words to describe how difficult it was, and I think that, for my side, I couldn’t get the temperature into the Intermediate tyres, so I was just tiptoeing.
“I think our crossover was good, it’s just that I lost ground to everyone when I had to stop, so we were at a bit of a disadvantage there and it just made it a little bit tricker, but no mistakes, kept it on track.”