'It Can't Get Any Worse Surely, And It Did': Hamilton On His Setup Struggles

Saturday, 20 April 2024 at 13:00
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Lewis Hamilton shared his thoughts on qualifying for the 2024 Chinese Grand Prix, in which he was knocked out of Q1.
The fifth race weekend of the 2024 season at the Shanghai International Circuit shaped up to be positive for the seven-time World Champion, who qualified in P2 for the Sprint race on Saturday.
The 39-year-old then managed to bring the P2 home and score seven points for Mercedes. Hamilton then hoped for at least a decent performance in qualifying and surely didn't expect to be knocked out in Q1.
The Mercedes driver was on a flying lap, which would easily get him through to Q2, but he made a huge mistake as he couldn't slow his car down going into turn number 14.
He went wide, and while he just managed to keep his Mercedes within the track limits, he lost six-tenths of a second, which meant qualifying was over for him.
Speaking to Sky Sports after the end of the qualifying, the British driver suggested his new setup made everything much more challenging for him.

"I made massive changes to qualifying. It wasn't too bad in some places, but I struggled and couldn't really get it to stop in turn 14, so... it is what it is."

"This morning, George and I had very similar cars. But then, this afternoon, we're still trying to experiment with the car. So I went one way, a long way, and he went another way. Just to see if we can find anything. And that's what we need to do at the moment."

The seven-time World Champion confessed with a laugh he didn't expect to qualify worse than he had during the previous rounds.

But, yeah, it didn't work. I'll give it my best shot – eighteenth is pretty bad. When I was making the set-up changes, I was like – 'It can't get any worse, surely!' And it did."