- United States Grand Prix - Mercedes
New chassis made the difference - Hamilton
Lewis Hamilton said his replacement chassis made a "night-and-day difference" to his performance at the United States Grand Prix on Sunday.
After scoring just 14 points in the last three races, Hamilton started fifth in Austin and finished fourth - his best result since his podium in Belgium. After the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix the team discovered a crack in his chassis back at the factory and replaced it this weekend. Hamilton said the difference in performance was clear.
"I'm very, very happy," he said. "I'm happy for the guys and just happy to have gone forward [in the race]. I'm always talking about staying where I am or going forwards and I'm really happy with that. The car was night-and-day difference to how it was in Abu Dhabi so I'm pretty sure the new tub helped. I've had some really difficult races in the past half of the season, so to finally have a half-decent qualifying and then be able to move forward and utilise the tyres and have some life left in them is a great feeling."
Fernando Alonso closed on Hamilton in the final stages of the race, but the Mercedes driver said he never felt his position was under threat.
"I could see at the end that Fernando was catching, so I was just looking after the tyres and waiting for him to push. He started to push so I reacted a little bit. If he was going to bring a tenth, I was going to bring two. If he was going to bring three, I was going to bring four. I was really happy I could do that today."