Jun.6 (GMM/Inautonews.com) Lewis Hamilton came to Canada wanting to put the Monaco blunder behind him.
It wasn’t to be.
F1’s official website on Friday published a full radio recording and transcript of what transpired in the ill-fated dying laps of the street race.
“Guys, that’s not good,” Hamilton told his engineer when informed that he would not be stopping during the safety car period.
Later, after Mercedes did decide to pit him, Hamilton added: “I’ve lost this race, haven’t I?”
Then on Friday in Montreal, as hard rain fell down on the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in second practice, Mercedes decided to send Hamilton out on track — on intermediate tyres.
“Aquaplaned!” Hamilton radioed after hitting the wall.
He told reporters it “wasn’t my call” to go out on track in the wet conditions, so the Daily Mail newspaper surmised it was yet “another Mercedes blunder”.
Other correspondents, however, are wondering if Monaco may have been a turning point for Hamilton as he loses focus on winning his third title.
Bild newspaper claims his new girlfriend is 19-year-old Kendall Jenner, the high-profile American daughter of Bruce (now Caitlyn) Jenner and half-sister of Kim Kardashian West.
In contrast, the newspaper claims the grounded Sebastian Vettel’s partner Hanna is pregnant with their second child.
“The fact is that Hamilton strung together a series of mistakes on the first day of practice (in Canada) that is not normal for a top driver,” said Alberto Sabbatini, editor-in-chief of the Italian magazine Autosprint.
British television Sky, meanwhile, claimed one of its cameramen was pushed by a bad-tempered Hamilton as he returned to the pits following his Friday crash.
“I wouldn’t read that much into it,” team boss Toto Wolff insisted.
Mercedes is probably much more concerned about Ferrari’s pace, as the Italian team debuts an updated engine in Canada that some believe carries 30 more horse power.
Germany’s Auto Motor und Sport published an analysis of the ‘long run’ pace from Friday practice that showed Kimi Raikkonen and Sebastian Vettel clearly ahead of Mercedes.
Wolff agrees: “Ferrari is much faster than us in the race simulation. We have to analyse that now, because we had no real setup issues or anything.”
Ferrari technical boss James Allison said he is happy with the engine upgrade, but warned that Mercedes may be “hiding their light under a bushel”.