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Hamilton: Everyone will be rusty when racing returns

  • Published on 19 May 2020 12:56
  • comments 0
  • By: Fergal Walsh

Lewis Hamilton believes everyone in the Formula 1 paddock will be rusty when the 2020 season starts after such a lengthy delay.

The coronavirus pandemic has seen the opening ten races of the year called off, with the last grand prix occurring almost half a year ago in Abu Dhabi, which concluded the 2019 campaign.

F1 is aiming to return in Austria at the beginning of July, kicking off a revised calendar that has not yet been confirmed. Although drivers were able to gain experience in their new cars at pre-season testing in February, Hamilton believes that it will take time to regain rhythm.

“I do hope to come back better,” Hamilton said in an interview with Mercedes. “We’re going to get in the car, we’re going to have Friday practice and we will all be rusty as hell. So it will be interesting to see how we hit the ground running.”

Earlier this month, Red Bull team principal Christian Horner shared a similar thought, stating he expects there to be a number of incidents when racing resumes this year.

Hamilton added that in order to make sure he is as honed in as possible, he has been speaking to senior engineers at Mercedes in order to make sure they turn up at the Red Bull Ring as the large gap from the last event doesn't exist. 

“But I’ve been on the phone with my team, speaking to Bono (Peter Bonnington), speaking to James [Vowles] and trying to discuss a plan with them. I think we all need to arrive utilising the tools we have.

“Race simulations, I probably will get in the simulator which I don’t always love, but utilising those tools to make sure when we come to that first race we hit the ground running and we’re ready, as if we’ve not missed any races.

“How can we arrive ni Austria, if it is Austria, like we’ve already done eight races? That’s going to be a challenge. I don’t know if we’re going to be able to do it but it's a good goal to have.”

Hamilton is aiming for a seventh world championship in 2020, which will pull him level on the all-time leaderboard with Michael Schumacher.

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AT Grand Prix of Austria

Local time 

  • Friday weather-image

    Saturday weather-image

    Sunday weather-image

  • Free practice 1

    11:00 - 12:30

    Free practice 3

    12:00 - 13:00

    Race

    15:10 - 17:10

  • Free practice 2

    15:00 - 16:30

    Qualifying

    15:00 - 16:00

    Fastest lap

     

AT Grand Prix of Austria

Local time 

  • Fridayweather-image

  • Free practice 1

    11:00 - 12:30

    Free practice 2

    15:00 - 16:30

  • Saturdayweather-image

  • Free practice 3

    12:00 - 13:00

    Qualifying

    15:00 - 16:00

  • Sunday weather-image

  • Race

    15:10 - 17:10

    Fastest lap

    15:10 - 17:10

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Formula 1 Calendar - 2020

Date
Grand Prix
Circuit
-
Spain
-
Spain
13 - Mar 15
Australia
20 - Mar 22
Bahrain
3 - Apr 5
Viet Nam
17 - Apr 19
China
1 - May 3
Netherlands
8 - May 10
Spain
21 - May 24
Monaco
5 - Jun 7
Azerbaijan
12 - Jun 14
Canada
26 - Jun 28
France
3 - Jul 5
Austria
17 - Jul 19
United Kingdom
31 - Aug 2
Hungary
28 - Aug 30
Belgium
4 - Sep 6
Italy
18 - Sep 20
Singapore
25 - Sep 27
Russian
9 - Oct 11
Japan
23 - Oct 25
United States of America
30 - Nov 1
Mexico
13 - Nov 15
Brazil
27 - Nov 29
United Arab Emirates
See full schedule

Formula 1 Calendar - 2020

Date
Grand Prix & Circuit
13 - Mar 15
Australia Albert Park
20 - Mar 22
3 - Apr 5
Viet Nam Hanoi Circuit
17 - Apr 19
1 - May 3
Netherlands Circuit Zandvoort
8 - May 10
21 - May 24
Monaco Monte Carlo
5 - Jun 7
Azerbaijan Baku City Circuit
12 - Jun 14
26 - Jun 28
France Paul Ricard
3 - Jul 5
Austria Red Bull Ring
17 - Jul 19
United Kingdom Silverstone
31 - Aug 2
Hungary Hungaroring
28 - Aug 30
4 - Sep 6
Italy Monza
18 - Sep 20
25 - Sep 27
Russian Sochi Autodrom
9 - Oct 11
23 - Oct 25
United States of America Circuit of the Americas
30 - Nov 1
13 - Nov 15
Brazil Interlagos
27 - Nov 29
United Arab Emirates Yas Marina Circuit
See full schedule
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