Mercedes Lewis Hamilton is the man to beat, but how does the Brit seemingly always manage to come out on top even when things look so dire?
A multiple-world championship winning driver doesn’t come up out of nowhere, despite what the tall tales may lead you to believe. No, a consecutive world champion winner is the culmination of years of dedication, hard work, and continual learning. Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton is currently the best example of such a champion that the sport has ever had – including Michael Schumacher.
Lewis and his team embody everything that a successful Formula One team aims to be: driven, directed, and working as a well-oiled machine. The awe in their feats lies not in having a perfect record in the sport – which they don’t – but rather in the sheer resilience at which they work to pull themselves out of the slumps they might find themselves in, whether anticipated or not.
Their start to the 2017 season was heavily overshadowed by the prowess that Ferrari demonstrated right out of the gate. Despite this, the team and driver went back to the data to hit the problems head on, and have managed to keep a struggling Hamilton in second place behind Vettel – only 12 points short of catching the leader. This isn’t the first time that this has happened to Hamilton and Co., but it does highlight a significantly more ready-to-react team than Lewis has ever been sighted with before.
For Hamilton, the key comes down to diligence. An invaluable asset that will see teams who employ it succeed with consistent results, and those that don’t flounder with spotty performances at best. Hamilton has personally hailed the team’s understanding and know-how as the boon he believes will bear them the greatest fruit at the end of the 2017 season:
“This time, the teamwork, the engineering, was so much better. We really understood where we went wrong, we really understood where the car was wrong, why we couldn’t activate the tires.
We came here actually with real knowledge rather than an idea of what potentially might have been the case, and ‘we’ll try a couple of them’. We actually came here with a real know-how of how to fix it.
If we acquire the same diligence that we did in the past two weeks after every single race, even when we win, I’m pretty sure that we can continue to fight, and maybe not make the rollercoaster ride so up and down.”
– Lewis Hamilton
Only time will tell if Hamilton and his boys in teal will be able to supersede the fiery Ferrari squad from Maranello – as they are not likely to go down without a fight – but with them doing everything they possibly can to sift through the mountains of data, they truly do prove the words of Mercedes boss Toto Wolff true: “This is not a sport of intuition, but one of science.”