Lewis Hamilton has criticised F1 drivers, claiming they “moan so much” and “want to take all the character and life out of these tracks” after the opening day in Baku.
A number of drivers – including Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg and Jenson Button – voiced their concerns over the lack of run-off areas in certain sections of the new Baku City Circuit. Asked what would be discussed in the drivers’ briefing and if he was happy with the safety of the circuit following Friday’s two practice sessions, Hamilton replied: “I’m well happy.
“One thing for sure, these drivers they moan so much, so much, about so many things. I guarantee you… it’s really bumpy down the main straight and you can’t really see Turn 1 that well when the car’s vibrating so it’s really hard but that’s a part of racing. But these guys want it to be smooth, like smoother than ever and have no vibrations and no bumps and they want to take all the character and life out of these tracks.
“I’m glad that this has bumps but I guarantee you today there’s going to be some people that say those things and I’ll just sit there and smile!”
Having topped both sessions on Friday, Hamilton believes the Baku City Circuit rewards drivers with confidence and bravery.
“I think every track drivers make a difference. Configuration-wise this is not massively challenging but this is a big ball track where you really need your balls with you through here.
“Just like in Monaco, where you’re coming down at 200mph and once you commit to the corner… Turn 1 you can dive out and go straight on but Turn 3 you commit to the corner and if you don’t make it you’re in the wall, just like in Monaco. So that’s what I’m saying, you really need your confidence and you need to have your bits together.”
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