Lewis Hamilton pleased with the podium finish in F1 Bahrain GP despite the lowly start with him and Toto Wolff playing down ‘karma’ factor.

Mercedes’ Hamilton was relieved to secure a podium finish in F1 Bahrain GP after a tough first weekend for the German manufacturer to start the 2022 season. He qualified fifth and stuck to his position all-race to eventually benefit from Red Bull’s misery.

He was happy to see Ferrari up there too with a 1-2 finish. While Charles Leclerc and Max Verstappen were out of reach for him, he felt maybe he could get Carlos Sainz at one point at the start when Sergio Perez bogged down the order helping Hamilton to be fourth.

“Firstly, it’s great to see Ferrari up here,” started Hamilton. “It’s a lot of red. But really happy to see these guys shine and be back up there. With the national anthem, also just the team and the energy that they always bring. It’s nice to see. I know they had a difficult year last year but they kept pushing, so it’s great to see them back. But I hope that we can get in the battle with them at some stage.

“I had a moment where I thought for a second that I was going to have a little bit of a battle with Carlos but it was only for five laps and then after that they were gone. I definitely didn’t expect to be up here. Of course I woke up in the morning and I was hopeful and we did everything we could, praying as hard as we could to get the best results.

“But ultimately it came down to just really hard work from the whole team both here and back at the factory. We have a lot of work to do. We have quite a big deficit in performance but this is a great start still,” summed up Hamilton, who stressed on the importance of the result especially knowing that they are down on pace at the moment.

“I think incredibly motivating probably for the whole team,” said Hamilton. “Given that we have been faced with these challenges which we were not expecting, and but just no one’s been down during this phase where we’ve been struggling through practice. Everyone’s stayed positive, everyone’s just kept their head down and kept working.

“No one’s moaned. And that’s great to see. And so whilst we don’t have the performance of these other guys, I think, in terms of our processes, in terms of squeezing absolutely everything out of the car, I think that’s what we did today and for both drivers, and I think that’s a true showing of strength within,” summed up Hamilton.

From Mercedes’ boss point of view, Wolff was happy to finish third and fourth on the road with the realistic finish being fifth and sixth for them considering their pace. They could experiment a bit being in that position, with the likes of Haas and Alfa Romeo a bit behind them in the pack. He termed it as being in a ‘no man’s land’.

“Fifth and sixth in the race would have been the reflection of where we are, I think we were competitive in the first few laps on the soft tyres, able to hold on if not pass some of the guys,” said Wolff to written media. “But we had more degradation, nevertheless it was good useful test for us.

“We tried the hard tyre which obviously wasn’t great as we lost a second a lap, also on the medium we weren’t really able to extract performance. There is some really good learning, and there is so many areas we need to improve in order to climb back to race with the guys at the front. In a way it was a new situation for all of us because we are somewhere in a no man’s land between P3/P4 and P6.

“Therefore you can experiment more, and I think the experiment with the hard tyres was worth it. Very different to all the other strategies of the front runners and obviously didn’t work at all. So more mileage, more laps, more learning,” summed up Wolff, who also responded to the ‘karma’ chatter doing rounds in social media.

After the double disaster for Red Bull, some of the fans have taken onto the social media to dub it as ‘karma’ for the F1 outfit after the happenings in 2021 Abu Dhabi GP. “The importance of the race in Abu Dhabi was greater than the importance of third in opener of the 2022 season,” said Wolff.

“I don’t wish anybody bad [luck], and [it was] certainly a brutal race for them.” Meanwhile, Hamilton added: “I don’t have a response to it. I just focused on our job. Obviously it was unfortunate for them today but, yeah, I just focus on positives.”

Here’s what happened to Sergio Perez which helped Lewis Hamilton to be P3: https://www.formula1.com/en/latest/video.2022-bahrain-grand-prix-perez-loses-p3-to-hamilton-after-late-spin.1727839537044785884.html

Here’s what happened with Red Bull

Here’s how the F1 Bahrain GP panned out