October 21, 2020, 2:31

Lewis Hamilton to get his ‘head down’ for Eifel GP victory attempt

Lewis Hamilton to get his ‘head down’ for Eifel GP victory attempt

That is set to remain the case on Sunday when, in one crucial consequence of the forced shortened schedule, teams and drivers will go into the race without their usual banks of data from practice on tyre performance during heavier-fuel runs.

Hamilton told Sky F1: “It’s going to be a challenge if it’s this cold or even colder tomorrow potentially.

“Usually the colder the track goes it moves more to wear at the front end of the car more than the rear. When it gets hot it’s the rear end that struggles most. So, it will be interesting to see how far we go tomorrow.”

1:58 Sky F1’s Karun Chandhok analyses Mercedes duo Valtteri Bottas’ and Lewis Hamilton’s qualifying laps at the Eifel GP

What about that Schumacher record?

Sunday’s race gives Hamilton a second chance to equal Michael Schumacher’s all-time wins record in F1.

His first shot at achieving victory 91 was scuppered a fortnight ago in Russia when time penalties for incorrect practice starts dropped the Mercedes driver to third place behind Bottas and Max Verstappen.

But while history this time looms at the circuit considered Schumacher’s home venue in F1 and where the German great won five times, Hamilton says he maintains his focus on the wider picture.

“I’ve got my work cut-out tomorrow,” he said in response to questions about the record.

“It’s not something I particularly think about. If and when it happens, it’ll be great – but right now these two [Bottas and Verstappen] are making it pretty hard for me.

“I’m enjoying this battle I’m having with these guys.”

1:16 Lewis Hamilton qualified second at the Eifel GP behind Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas

Hamilton’s praise for Mercedes stand-ins

Mercedes locked out the front row for the 72nd time in F1 on a weekend when they have had to reshuffle some of their operations after two team members tested positive for coronavirus ahead of the weekend.

In the wake of the first positive test confirmed on Thursday, the whole team were tested again with one further person recording a positive result, while another was inconclusive and awaiting a retest.

Four further team members, who all tested negative, were then isolated in line with F1’s stringent protocols. Six replacements were flown in from the team’s UK base to fill the roles at the Nurburgring.

Hamilton said that those called up had done a “fantastic job” on Saturday and praised their professionalism.

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff had said on Friday Hamilton and Bottas each “almost need to live like a hermit” with the team limiting interaction between the drivers and the wider team.

Sourse: skysports.com

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