After setting the pace during both Friday practice sessions, Lewis Hamilton had a positive reaction to the unique street circuit and requested that drivers stop complaining about the new track’s characteristics.
The circuit’s narrow layout means that like Monaco, there’s very little room for error, a feature that appeals to Hamilton which is why the World Champion is growing tired of regularly hearing drivers complain about circuits.
“One thing for sure is that these drivers moan so much about so many things,” said Hamilton.
“It is really bumpy down the main straight and you can’t see Turn 1 really well, but that is part of racing,” he said. “These guys wants it to be smoother than ever with no vibrations and no bumps and take all the character out of these tracks.
“I’m glad this has bumps but l guarantee there will be people saying those things.”
The field’s most experienced driver, Jenson Button, was vocal about the limited run-off areas yesterday before any car had completed a lap.
“We have worked so hard on safety, improving circuits all the time, and then we come here and corners like turn three, turn seven, turn 14 don’t have any run-off at all,” Button said.
Hamilton’s teammate Nico Rosberg was also at unease at the lack of run-off areas, calling it “a bit of a concern”.
Although Hamilton isn’t the only one who is enjoying the challenge of the tight street circuit, Red Bull Racing’s Daniel Ricciardo was also positive after a session and a half of running.
“The track feels as tight as it looks,” Ricciardo said.
“It’s cool to have some of these high-speed corners that are on the edge and of course you then have a long straight so you get a bit of a chance to breathe but pretty much all the corners keep you busy and keep you occupied.
“There are no real easy corners on the track which is good in terms of the challenge, definitely.”
Image via XPB Images