Article

Hamilton happy with Mercedes car

9 February 2013 06:08

Lewis Hamilton declared Mercedes have met all his expectations to date following Formula One testing at Jerez on Friday.

Hamilton, who joined Mercedes from McLaren for the 2013 season, completed a total of 145 laps on Friday after being limited to just 15 laps following a crash on Wednesday.

The 2008 world champion set the 10th fastest lap of the week at Jerez with a time of one minute 18.905 seconds - more than a second behind Ferrari pacesetter Felipe Massa.

"Overall, I think we are probably at the level we would have hoped to be," Hamilton said.

"The team has done a great job to add downforce to the car over the winter and they now need (team-mate) Nico (Rosberg) and me to tell them where we can improve and the direction we need to go.

"Today we managed the kind of mileage that the car is capable of and I think we have a good platform to start working from.

"Everybody has been incredibly supportive and I am really building a good bond with the team; they feel energised, ready to go and everybody is working flat out to move us forward."

Mercedes boss Ross Brawn said the team were in good spirits ahead of next month's season-opening Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne.

"After a difficult first half of the test, the last two days have really been as good as we could have hoped for," he said.

"Lewis had a very constructive day today as he settled in to the car; he has been very straightforward in telling us what he thinks, is interested in everything about the car and has a very good eye for detail.

"Overall, the step we have to make from where we were at the end of last year is substantial and it is also, of course, a moving target.

"But looking at the team as a whole, I can see very encouraging signs of progress."

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