Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes team unveil new vehicle

Mercedes

Heading into the 2020 season, Hamilton has the chance to make history on several fronts - but the biggest record on offer is the chance to tie Michael Schumacher's record of seven World Championships.

Lewis Hamilton enjoyed a trouble-free shakedown run at the wheel of Mercedes' 2020 auto at Silverstone, reporting that the new contender felt just as good as the vehicle he raced in Abu Dhabi at the end of past year.

"The guys have worked so hard to put the vehicle together and there are only two of us, Valtteri (Bottas) and I, who get to drive it".

Hamilton's Finnish team-mate Valtteri Bottas will drive the auto in the morning before the Briton, 35, takes over in the afternoon.

"In the top teams, there isn't going to be a lot of movement", he said, after taking his latest Mercedes vehicle, the W11, for its first laps during a private session at Silverstone. "It is a real privilege to have that position".

According to Hamilton's boss, Mercedes chief Toto Wolff, the Englishman is relishing the challenge from "generation next" with Leclerc and Verstappen both just 22 years old.

"They couldn't be more excited, more enthusiastic, or more driven".

The W11 is the successor to six successive double title winners, with last year's W10 winning 15 of the season's 21 races.

Lewis Hamilton has hit back at criticism from Max Verstappen, calling the Dutchman's comments "a sign of weakness". "Maybe God is with him, but he is not God".

Speaking at the Silverstone launch of the Silver Arrows" 2020 machine yesterday, Hamilton said: "I find it amusing. "Often I tend to see that (talk) as a sign of weakness".

"Success is taking each step a day at a time", added Wolff. "Today, success would be we have a good shakedown, clock the mileage, get the filming done and then go to Barcelona, get the work done, collect the data and go in good shape to Melbourne [for the season's opening grand prix]".

The rear bodywork is noticeably more tightly packaged for better airflow, and there is the usual complexity of airflow shapers behind the front wheels.

Hamilton also poured cold water on Verstappen's title hopes and named team-mate Valtteri Bottas as his main rival.

"We have worked on a huge array of projects, and when summed together they will hopefully help propel the auto around the track quicker and give the aerodynamics team more opportunities to improve as well".

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