Formula One’s new set of technical regulations will take some getting used to for all the teams in the paddock, but former World Champion Lewis Hamilton believes his Mercedes team can handle the dramatic changes and come out firing in 2014.
In comments to British F1 broadcaster Sky Sports, Hamilton conceded that there will likely be some equipment problems for everybody but feels that Mercedes, the runner-up in this past season’s constructors’ championship, will be able to get through those.
“I feel confident with what the guys are doing; you just never know what’s going to happen,” Hamilton said to Sky. “The engine’s going to be difficult for people. There’s going to be blow-ups next year I’m sure all around and how we manage that [is going to be key]. But I feel that I have the best group of people to be able to do that.”
Sebastian Vettel and Red Bull may have covered all the bases in 2013, but it was still a good year for the Brackley squad as it was able to establish itself as a legitimate World Championship contender with Hamilton and Nico Rosberg leading the charge.
Hamilton remains ever critical of himself, and to be fair, there were a couple of low points in an otherwise solid year for him. However, he tells Sky that he’s been able to shake off rough outings more quickly.
“…Whilst in the moment – while you’re right in front of the camera – it looks like I am really hard on myself,” he said. “I am naturally and I’m really thinking about it days after but I’m over it and want to get to the next race. ‘How can I do it differently? What can I do differently with the car?'”
That ability may prove necessary at some point while Mercedes and the other teams come to grips with the new V6 turbo engines and energy recovery systems on the 2014 cars.
But it’s worth remembering that Mercedes was no slouch in terms of V8 engine power, and if it can bring that power as well as reliability over to its V6, then Hamilton’s faith in his crew could be rewarded.