Hamilton upbeat about new Mercedes despite crash

Lewis Hamilton was not discouraged by his accident on the first day of running in Jerez, noting that the Mercedes had done more running than any of its rivals.

Hamilton crashed at Turn One when his front wing fell off, which ended running for the day.

“For me it’s an incredibly positive start to be the first car out on track and completing a good number of laps,” said Hamilton. “Other teams have been going out for single-lap runs, starting a few hours after we had first hit the track, so to have started running through our test programme was very encouraging. The car feels quite good, especially considering it’s so early in our programme, so overall it’s been a positive day.

“Of course, it’s unfortunate to end the day early when everyone has worked so hard and we had looked like easily completing the most mileage of anyone here today, but we’ll make that track time back and it’s better to have these things happen now than in Melbourne. I’m really proud of the team for what they’ve achieved in getting us here and we’ll keep pushing.”

“To conclude our day’s running with a front wing failure was an unfortunate end to what had, to that point, been a very positive start to our winter,” said technical boss Paddy Lowe. “We were the first team to send a car out on track, on the dot at 0900 this morning, and were gradually extending the length of the runs when the incident occurred. Lewis’ initial feedback was positive once he was able to complete some timed laps, which is a promising indicator for the basic package.

“Concerning the failure itself, we are still analysing its cause, and this process, coupled with the repairs to the car, have brought an end to our running today. The teams at Brackley and Brixworth did a fantastic job to prepare the car for running this morning and tomorrow we hope to start adding to what is already a useful number of laps completed. There is a lot of data for us to analyse overnight and the learning curve this winter will be very steep.”

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