Bottas due to gearbox failure, and Hamilton due to seat problems and sandstorms, remained at the back on Friday in terms of the number of laps done. The Mercedes team did not do well on the first day of pre-season testing in Bahrain.
During the morning program, a gearbox malfunction forced Valtteri Bottas to wait several hours in the garage and he did only six laps in the end, and it wasn’t much better for Lewis Hamilton either, who was driving in the afternoon part of the program.
The current champion failed to connect a number of laps. In the end, he was only 42, so Mercedes was at the very bottom of the list in terms of the number of laps completed. Hamilton's fastest lap was 1: 32,912. Enough only for the tenth position.
"Such things were sent to us to tempt us. I don’t think we definitely had one of our good days today. Everyone worked extremely hard to be here with that car, but obviously, we had an accident in the morning. It's really unfortunate for Valtteri to lose so much time on the track.
" “It definitely didn’t go without challenges, but we are here to look for solutions to the problems we are facing. We have to do a meeting and analysis and continue working, to extract the positive from every day."
"I don't think anyone sank because of this today," Hamilton said.
He also explained what his problems were in the car, partly related to the new seat. “I made some pretty big changes to the ergonomics of my seat to try something different and at first it felt good.
I felt like it was a good idea when we set everything up in the factory, but the ride was awful, so I immediately got out of the car and we put everything back the way it was before. ” "I've never seen a sandstorm like this here, I haven't seen anything like sand rain in all the years we've been coming.
It was definitely not good. Having sand on the tires is not good for longer stints, in regard to that it was a disaster, ”added Lewis. On Saturday, Mercedes drivers will again share the time behind the wheel of the W12 car. Hamilton opens in the morning, while Bottas will hope for better performance in the afternoon.