'Disappointing' To See Hamilton And Russell 'Having Troubled Time' Says Coulthard

Sunday, 12 May 2024 at 14:30
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Former F1 driver David Coulthard suggested it was "disappointing" to see Lewis Hamilton and George Russell struggle so much at the beginning of the 2024 season.
The sixth race weekend at Miami International Autodrome marked the 25% milestone of the 2024 season. With three quarters still to go, Mercedes currently stands in P4 (64 points) in the Championship—two positions lower than where they finished last season.
P4 might not be so bad if it was close, but McLaren in P3 has almost double Mercedes's points (124 points), Ferrari in P2 has nearly three times as many (187 points), and Red Bull in P1 has almost four times as many (239 points).
Mercedes's best result so far was Lewis Hamilton's P2 during the sprint race in China, but if we consider only Grand Prix races, neither of the Silver Arrows was able to finish better than P5. David Coulthard told Channel 4:

"It's disappointing for us all. We want to see George and Lewis in the mix. Quality drivers. One with the seven-time world champion stamp… and we know it could be more…"

"They are having a troubled time. But they are having a troubled time in one of the most competitive eras in Formula 1."

Mercedes introduced the first half of their big upgrade in Miami, and the team's principal, Toto Wolff, suggested the team made some progress.
Silver Arrows will introduce the second half of their upgrade during this week's race weekend at Imola Circuit. This is a crucial point in Mercedes's season because if this upgrade brings more performance, the team might have hope of battling for podiums in the remaining 18 race weekends.
But if it doesn't, it might mean the German team is lost and won't be able to do much more this year, and that also translates to a poor 2025 (last season under current regulations). Coulthard added:

"In China, the spread from pole to last was one-and-a-half percent. The difference between Usain Bolt winning the 100m and the guy in eighth was two percent! So let's keep it in perspective. They are dealing with small margins."

"But that's what Formula 1 is. It represents the very best. They are two great drivers. They need to keep looking at the areas they can improve on that car. But right now? It's troubled times."