Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes are coming off two ‘strategic losses’ to Ferrari in the first two grand prix of the year, however, Hamilton believes that strategic races is what makes the sport of F1 so much more fun.
The Brit emphasised that all drivers can race fast on a flat-out track but constructing and strategising a race requires a more advanced skill set, something that differentiates the good from the great.
“There are so many drivers here and everyone can drive fast. Obviously there are some drivers who can drive faster, but we can all drive a fast and flat-out race,” Hamilton said.
“But there’s more to it when there are skills that you need to get to the end of the race faster.
“It’s more like a chess game than a rash decision racing. I personally enjoy it and I take great pride in the ability I have to manage my race the way I do. Generally, I like to think I’m able to do it in a better way than other drivers are, but there are lots of tools.
“It’s not just about being a driver, I’m also a strategist when I’m in the car and you have to think a lot. I like that challenge and I guess I’ve grown used to it, but it’s definitely not easy that’s for sure. When they are telling you not to hit a certain time, you don’t have to abide by that fully, you have to feel it out.” he added.
Under the new rules that will be finalised by Liberty Media, more access and control is going to be with the driver as the sport has received criticism regarding the influence that engineers have on the result of the race. Apparently there is going to be shift of control from the engineers to the drivers, the prospect of which is mouth-watering to Hamilton.
“We are in a good period of time in F1 and I am grateful I am are here at this period of time when they are bigger, faster, there’s more downforce and there is more of a challenge globally,” he said.
“It will always be difficult for people that are watching and even the engineers to understand how difficult it is for us [to drive].
“It’s like we have no comprehension for how difficult it is to fly a fighter jet, but you can kind of imagine it must be cool but by no means easy.
“It’s a huge team and I am only one man so finding a percentage is difficult. If a bigger percentage can come from the driver then that is only good for me.” he concluded.