Mercedes: Lewis Hamilton hails fantastic start

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton 2014 testing

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Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton has described this week’s testing in Jerez as a “really fantastic start” after they completed 309 laps while rivals Red Bull, among others, struggled.

Red Bull have dominated the past four seasons in F1, but the 2014 season promises to spring a surprise or two with the Milton Keynes-based team struggling after the first three days of testing.

The world champions only completed 21 laps in the RB10 as they struggled with overheating, with Mercedes having no such trouble, even managing to swap their driver schedule on the final day.

Due to the changes in regulations for the upcoming season, teams were perhaps feeling their way a little bit but Hamilton is clearly buoyed by his team’s positive start.

“It has been an amazing week,” Hamilton said. “To get the amount of mileage we have has been very encouraging. The biggest positive we can take from here is that the car is reliable.

“We aren’t focused on anyone else, we’re just focused on ourselves and trying to improve. We want as much data as we can and as much miles as we can.

“We’re just taking one step at a time. It’s been fantastic, really fantastic.”

Mercedes and the rest of the paddock will now head to Bahrain for the second stage of testing, but the early stages do not look good for Red Bull and Sebastian Vettel.

The German is currently 2.660 to win the World Championship in 2014, with the rest of the field at odds of 1.480.

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