F1: Bruised Hamilton says new Mercedes W08 is ‘more physical to drive’ after second day of 2017 Barcelona pre-season test

PUBLISHED: 10:08 01 March 2017 | UPDATED: 16:30 03 March 2017

Lewis Hamilton in Barcelona on day two of the first pre-season test [Picture: Wolfgang Wilhelm]

Lewis Hamilton in Barcelona on day two of the first pre-season test [Picture: Wolfgang Wilhelm]

Daimler AG

Three-time Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton says his new Mercedes W08 car is “much faster” through corners after the second day of pre-season testing in Spain.

Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport completed 168 laps of the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya on Tuesday, as 2017 pre-season testing continued in Spain with Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas taking turns at the wheel of the F1 W08 EQ Power+.

Stevenage-born Hamilton emerged for his first run as the track opened at 9am, completing 66 laps before the hour-long lunch break at 1pm.

Hamilton said: “I’m finding the car is much more physical to drive than in the past. It’s so much faster in the corners.

“The force you feel on your body and on your neck is much higher.

“I’ve got bruises and bumps where I’ve never really had them before.

“Physically I feel fine though, as it’s only half a day of testing. I’ve trained enough over the winter to be ready for more.”

The 32-year-old from Hertfordshire kicked off the Silver Arrows’ programme with aero data collection and vibration logging, moving on to analysis of the softer tyre compounds and set-up work

Afterwards Hamilton said: “Today’s been a really positive day. It was an easier morning and we started off on the right foot.

“Yesterday [Monday], there was an element of brushing off the cobwebs, it being the first day in the car, so it took a little longer than normal to really acclimatise in the car and to find exactly where to exploit the its ability.

“I didn’t do a huge amount of laps today [Tuesday] but I got a really good feel for the car.

“I think we’ve made some steps forward in development. My quick lap felt fast and tidy.

“We’ve not really exploited the potential of the car, so it’s all good foundation building at this stage.

“These new tyres seem to be lasting a lot better than they did previously, so I think you can push them more and fight harder, lap after lap, so that’s a good step in the right direction.”

Hamilton’s new Mercedes team-mate Bottas took over in the cockpit for the afternoon session, completing 102 laps before the pit lane closed at 6pm.

In the afternoon session, Valtteri completed a race simulation before rounding off the day with further aero tests.

Bottas said: “I think it was another good test day for the team. We did so many laps again and completed all the runs that we had planned to do.

“I worked on race simulations in the afternoon. It was quite tricky with the windy conditions but I’m sure that we can learn a lot from the data.

“I had a small off but it wasn’t anything serious. I lost the rear end with a gust of tail wind that was quite sudden. This is testing – you need to find the limits.”

Bottas added: “It’s interesting to learn more about the new car – not just for me personally, but for us as a team.

“All the set-up work we’ve done has been very valuable.”

Bottas is behind the wheel of the W08 this morning (Wednesday), with Hamilton returning to the track in the afternoon on the third day of pre-season testing in Barcelona.

• 2017 Pre-Season Test 1, Day 2 Times

1 Kimi Räikkönen (7) Ferrari – 1:20.960

2 Lewis Hamilton (44) Mercedes – 1:20.983

3 Max Verstappen (33) Red Bull – 1:22.200

4 Kevin Magnussen (20) Haas – 1:22.204

5 Esteban Ocon (31) Force India – 1:22.509

6 Daniil Kvyat (26) Toro Rosso – 1:22.956

7 Valtteri Bottas (77) Mercedes – 1:22.986

8 Jolyon Palmer (30) Renault – 1:24.139

9 Antonio Giovinazzi (36) Sauber – 1:24.617

10 Stoffel Vandoorne (2) McLaren – 1:25.600

11 Lance Stroll (18) Williams – 1:26.040.

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