It’s fair to say Lewis Hamilton hasn’t had the dream start to the 2016 season, a second place finish in Melbourne followed by a third in Bahrain isn’t exactly what he would have wished for before the season start. But what exactly has gone wrong for the three-time World Champion? No victories in five, and potentially showing signs of frustration by claiming Nico Rosberg’s winning streak spanning over 2 seasons “doesn’t count.”
Hamilton will have been frustrated with his start to the season, his teammate Nico Rosberg has defeated him not only in the opening two races of this season, but also the last three races at the back end of last season (so be it Hamilton was already World Champion at this point.) But has anything changed since his last victory in Austin back in October last year. Hamilton will certainly not be enjoying Rosberg’s success despite them sharing the same car, as the two teammates cracked relationship is for all to see. From ‘deliberate’ collisions to throwing caps at each other, Hamilton will certainly be eager to overcome Rosberg in China this weekend.
No one can definitely say what has gone wrong for Hamilton other than himself, however the Brit’s press conferences have suggested evident signs of frustration with his below par start to the season. Hamilton described his teammate’s victories to Sky Sports as “not counting.”
TOTAL LAPS LED AFTER TWO RACES:
— Formula 1 (@F1) April 7, 2016
“You win consecutively in a season – that’s something. Five over two seasons, that doesn’t mean anything physiologically to me.”
The two opening races have had effects on Hamilton however, turn 1 in Bahrain saw Valtteri Bottas clip the Mercedes driver putting him down the grid early on, after the red flag disrupted his race strategy in Melbourne. The Brit’s misfortunes will have no effect on Rosberg as he has stormed to victory on both occasions this season, which raises the question has the German simply just got the pace this year to beat Lewis Hamilton? Although the race times do not tell the full story, 8 seconds ahead in Melbourne and 30 seconds ahead in Bahrain will please Nico Rosberg, and certainly fill him with confidence going into China looking to complete three wins out of three this season.
The threat of Ferrari may still not be enough to worry Mercedes just yet, however Hamilton has expressed his excitement of the advancements they’re making, and how close they could come this year. Sebastian Vettel looked promising in Melbourne until the red flag, and with more reliability with the engines, they will certainly be a force to compete with Mercedes.
If these issues improve this season for Ferrari, certainly this adds more pressure on Lewis Hamilton as he is the one everyone on the grid wants to beat – the reigning World Champion. Obviously, Ferrari have a long way to come if they are consistently to challenge Mercedes, however there have been signs Ferrari are back to compete for them pole positions and podium finishes, which physiologically may have affected Hamilton contributing to his disappointing start this season.