Hamilton predicts harder F1 battle

Published: Saturday 21st February 2015 by The News Editor

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World champion Lewis Hamilton expects to face a greater challenge for the title this year as he believes Ferrari and Red Bull will provide more competition.

The Englishman was third-quickest on the third day of the second test in Barcelona with Pastor Maldonado, in the Lotus, setting the pace just ahead of Toro Rosso’s Max Verstappen.

Hamilton, who won the title by 67 points last year, claims he has not been paying attention to what his rivals are doing but he is expecting to find it more difficult this time around.

“I’ve not been looking at the others. Maldonado was quick today but I’m sure everyone was on different tyres, different fuel loads,” he told reporters.

“I anticipate Ferrari look quite strong, similar to Red Bull, but I don’t really know where we are amongst those.

“I think we’ll maybe have a little bit of a better understanding next week.

“It’s like juggling blind, but that’s what I love about this sport; I don’t really know what’s to come.

“I anticipate a harder fight this year, that’s what I’m anticipating.”

McLaren-Honda had further problems with a recurrence of an issue with a faulty seal on the MGU-K, one of the energy recovery systems, which first appeared on Thursday.

A revised part was fitted on Saturday but that did not perform as expected and McLaren ended up running with reduced power.

“After the morning session, the car fed back MGU-K issues similar to what we experienced on Thursday, so we brought it back to the garage,” said a McLaren statement.

“After a thorough check, we have decided to resume testing with limited power to the MGU-K.

“A new and re-engineered seal is scheduled to arrive and will be applied later this evening.”

Published: Saturday 21st February 2015 by The News Editor

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