• Chinese GP - FP2

Hamilton bracing himself for tough weekend

ESPN Staff
April 18, 2014 « No catching Mercedes until second half of season - Button | Long-run pace could be key - Ricciardo »
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Lewis Hamilton is expecting Mercedes to face a tougher challenge at the Chinese Grand Prix than it has at any other track this year.

Despite a problem with his car in the morning session, Hamilton went on to set the quickest time overall in the afternoon but felt it flattered his real pace. Fernando Alonso was just 0.141s off Hamilton's time and after three races of dominating from the front, Hamilton suggested the gap could start to close.

"It doesn't feel spectacular, it's a lot harder here than it has been in other places," he said. "I missed a bit of practice in FP1 and that put me on the back foot a bit. Going into this session I'm not really happy with the car, so I will have to go and look at it. I have some work to do. My time was set later in the session than everyone so it's not really relevant."

Wet weather on Saturday is likely to further muddy the waters in terms of set-up and Hamilton said he will need to rely on a certain amount of "guesswork".

"Tonight we have to do a lot of guesswork and analyse the issues you have on track and try and focus on the points of the track where we can really improve the car. Tomorrow when it rains we have to deal with what we have and hope for the best. When we get to the race it's going to be tricky to drive because we won't have tested the set-up we have tomorrow in the dry."

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