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Lewis Hamilton now ‘truly believes’ Mercedes can win this year as he targets Austrian GP progress

Lewis Hamilton says he now “truly believes” Mercedes can
win a race this season – and is not ruling out a surprise at
this weekend’s Austrian GP.
Mercedes, a distant third in the championship, have
struggled for form so far this season but had their most
competitive weekend of 2022 at the British GP, where
Hamilton came close to his first victory.While Hamilton eventually had to settle for a podium, the
pace seems to have completely changed the seven-time
world champion’s mindset.
Hamilton, speaking to media ahead of the Austrian GP –
which is all live on Sky Sports F1 this weekend – admitted
he “definitely wasn’t sure that we’d get a win in this car”, but
now is more positive about his team’s chances.”That’s definitely not the way we like to think but it was feeling like, jeez, there’s a long, long way to catch everyone
up knowing the progress everyone makes,” Hamilton said.

“But definitely hugely encouraging.”For a long, long time, we would make changes and not see
it do what it says it was going to do and improve the car.
“It was a good step in Barcelona, but then we had several
difficult races following it. Then we just had these last two
races which were quite strong and that’s really encouraged
us that we’re moving in in the right direction and that there
really is potential in the car.
“With a little bit more digging and a little more hard work,
hopefully we can get closer to having a chance to win a
race.

“So I truly believe we can win a race win this year.”Hamilton is bidding to extend an F1 record for winning a
race in every season, having done so since 2007.
He continued that there was “definitely potential” to win in
Silverstone but Mercedes’ current performance is “not exactly
the same level as the two teams ahead”, Red Bull and
Ferrari.
“We needed everything to align,” he admitted.
Even in their dominant title-winning seasons, Mercedes have
found it tough at Austria’s Red Bull Ring, where the 11th
round of the season takes place this weekend – with an
added Sprint race on Saturday.Mercedes have only won one of the last five races at Red
Bull’s circuit.

“Coming here, we’ve struggled in Austria,” added
Hamilton. “So it’s going to be hard to win here knowing the
combination of corners. But not impossible.
“I’m hoping that we’re pleasantly surprised [on Friday] – but I
might be wrong. I’ll find out, but I’m staying hopeful and the
best thing you do Lewis Hamilton now ‘truly
believes’ Mercedes can win
this year as he targets to arrive hopeful and positive and
navigate from there.

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