November 29, 2022

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F1 news LIVE: Title already ‘out of reach’ for Lewis Hamilton as Red Bull criticised for ‘cheap shot’

6 min read
<p>Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes have struggled for pace this season </p>

Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes have struggled for pace this season

(Getty Images)

Mercedes have been told that the car problems they have suffered early in this F1 season mean the title is already out of reach for their drivers Lewis Hamilton and George Russell.

Seven-time world champion Hamilton has struggled badly in the opening four races of the season, facing significant difficulties with the new Mercedes W13 car and declaring that there was “no question” that his title hopes are over after Sunday’s Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.

Meanwhile, Red Bull have been criticised for taking a “cheap shot” at the lacklustre early-season performances of their rivals as Formula 1 begins to gear up for the first edition of the Miami Grand Prix.

Helmut Marko, a long-time adviser at Red Bull and head of the team’s driver development program, joked after the race in Imola that Hamilton shoud retire after being lapped by winner Max Verstappen. Marko’s comments have been criticised by former F1 driver Johnny Herbert, who labelled the remark a “cheap shot” and said that Red Bull would still want Hamilton as one of their drivers even after a below-par start to the season.

Follow all the latest F1 news and updates, below:


Carlos Sainz urged to stay calm to avoid ‘psychological difficulties’ after struggles

Carlos Sainz will eventually deliver “excellent results” for Ferrari but must first “stay calm” in order to get through his tough start to the season, according to Formula 1 CEO Stefano Domenicali.

Sainz has failed to finish the past two races after he was bumped off the track by Daniel Ricciardo at last week’s Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.

Sainz, who received an apology from Ricciardo after the race, has slipped 48 points behind team-mate and championship leader Charles Leclerc in the standings, despite the drivers appearing to be on level footing before the start of the season.

The Spaniard also retired from the Australian Grand Prix after finishing on the podium in each of the first two races of the season, although still behind Leclerc.

Domenicali has urged Sainz, who signed a new contract extension with Ferrari before the Imola race last week, to not get down after the past two races and avoid getting into “psychological difficulties”.

Luke Baker29 April 2022 20:45


Ferrari boss has no regrets despite Charles Leclerc crash at Imola

The Monegasque driver was urged to push on and try to hunt down Sergio Perez towards the end of the Imola race as he eyed second place behind runaway winner Max Verstappen.

But while trying to close the gap to the Red Bull, Leclerc spun in the wet/dry conditions with just nine laps remaining. He was then forced to pit after damaging his front wing in the collision with the wall, a move which pushed him back to ninth.

And while Leclerc managed to recover three positions in the final stages of the race, it remained a frustrating weekend for him and Ferrari – with teammate Carlos Sainz crashing out on the first lap.

Yet despite the decision to urge Leclerc to chase down Perez ending in disaster, Binotto does not see it as a mistake.

Luke Baker29 April 2022 20:32


Other Formula 1 teams ‘playing games’ around car weight limit, fumes Alfa Romeo boss

Alfa Romeo team principal Frederic Vasseur believes other Formula 1 teams have been ‘playing games’ when it comes to the weight of their cars this season.

Due to the increase in tyre size and a number of other heavy additions, the minimum weight of a car plus driver was increased from 792 kilograms to 795kg for 2022.

But after the pre-season testing some teams voiced their concerns to the FIA that the minimum weight was still too low. It was subsequently readjusted to 798kg.

The only team perfectly on 798kg at present is said to be Alfa Romeo, with Vasseur suggesting some teams wanted to raise the minimum weight to disadvantage his team who had got it precisely on the minimum limit.

Luke Baker29 April 2022 20:20


Lewis Hamilton doesn’t want F1 to axe ‘crown jewel’ Monaco Grand Prix

And with the Monaco race’s contract set to expire at the end of this season, there are fears it could be ousted from the schedule in the near future.

But Hamilton, who has won the Monaco race three times, feels it is important to keep the most prestigious tracks on the calendar.

Luke Baker29 April 2022 20:06


When and where is the next Formula One race?

The Formula One season is in full swing as the drivers prepare for the fifth race of the most extensive calendar in the sport’s history.

So far, Charles Leclerc and Max Verstappen have shared two wins apiece, but the Ferrari man still holds a 27-point advantage over the reigning world champion due to the Red Bull man’s two DNFs in Bahrain and Melbourne.

It looks set to be a battle between Ferrari and Red Bull for both the drivers’ and constructors’ championships.

And then there are narratives further down the field involving the likes of Mercedes, McLaren, Alpine, Aston Martin.

Here is everything you need to know.

Luke Baker29 April 2022 19:55


Lewis Hamilton’s ‘psychological strength’ called into question amid Mercedes struggles

Former NASCAR and IndyCar driver Danica Patrick has questioned Lewis Hamilton’s “psychological strength” amid his struggles with Mercedes this season.

Hamilton has been on one podium this campaign, coming third in Bahrain, but has failed to hit top gear, so to speak. He is currently seventh in the drivers’ standings after his latest disappointment – coming 13th at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.

“I’m really curious, I’m curious as to where the speed is,” Patrick told Sky Sports. “[Hamilton’s teammate] George Russell’s having a pretty decent season, he had a good day. I don’t know, are they trying different things with Lewis?”

Luke Baker29 April 2022 19:41


Lewis Hamilton urged to admit George Russell is ‘better driver right now’

Russell has been more consistent this season, finishing in the top five of each race, but Hamilton has struggled in the team’s car. ‘Porpoising‘ has been as issue Mercedes are dealing with and Hamilton could not get ahead of the midfield pack after only qualifying 14th at the Emilia Romana Grand Prix.

It meant the seven-time world champion finished 13th – while Russell finished fourth after being able to get ahead of several drivers on the opening lap.

Luke Baker29 April 2022 19:29


Toto Wolff senses Mercedes improvement in Miami to unlock ‘quite some lap time’

The team have struggled this season, particularly with ‘porpoising’, which has seen them bag only two podiums and no wins. The reality of the situation has led driver Lewis Hamilton to concede his title chances this campaign.

But Wolff says their season could turn around in Miami.

“We very much believe that the science we are putting in at the moment will help us to, in effect, run the car lower,” he said, as per “It is where we believe we have all the aerodynamic goodness, but we haven’t been able to unlock it because of the bottoming of the car.”

Luke Baker29 April 2022 19:16


FIA accused of ‘greed’ as row over F1 sprint races escalates

The FIA has been accused of “greed” after it stalled over approving plans to double the number of sprint races in Formula One from 2023, amid warnings such a move could create a split at the top of the sport.

Formula One and its team have given its unanimous backing to increasing the number of sprint races from three to six from next season, following a successful trial last year, but the FIA said it was “still evaluating” the proposal following discussions on Tuesday.

The FIA are reportedly concerned about the additional costs involved in hosting an additional three sprint races, which replaces one of the practice sessions and acts as qualifying for Sunday’s grand prix as a shortened race on Saturday.

Luke Baker29 April 2022 19:04


Max Verstappen’s dad enjoyed watching son lap Lewis Hamilton at Imola

The Red Bull driver secured his second victory of the season with a dominant performance at Imola, winning from pole after also taking victory in Saturday’s sprint race.

Hamilton has been off-the-pace amid considerable difficulty for Mercedes early in the 2022 season, and endured a tough weekend in Imola.

Luke Baker29 April 2022 18:52