Finishing on the podium in the Canadian Grand Prix was “overwhelming” for Lewis Hamilton after the struggles has faced in recent races.
Hamilton was in pain after the Azerbaijan Grand Prix due to the severity of the bouncing within his Mercedes, and needed acupuncture and massages following the race to help him be fit for Montreal.
After qualifying fourth in the wet, Hamilton had a competitive run to third place for his second podium of the season, and was delighted with the result at the site of his first ever win back in 2007.
“It’s quite overwhelming, honestly, to get this third place,” Hamilton said. “It’s been such a battle this year with the car and as a team. But we continue to stay vigilant and focused and never giving up. And that’s something I’m so proud of and inspired by my crew. So thank you to everyone that’s here and back at the factory.
“They’re [Red Bull and Ferrari] a little bit too quick for us at the moment, but I was giving everything. But we’re getting closer, so we’ve just got to keep pushing, keep pushing and eventually we hopefully will be in a fight with these guys.
“I could just about see them in the end thanks to the safety car, but honestly our pace was quite good particularly in the second phase of the stint, and we did a lot of work back in the simulator but also here to get the set-up right, so honestly I’m ecstatic.
“I didn’t expect this coming into the weekend … So this feels really special, especially here where I got my first grand prix win. I love it here in Montreal.”
The result was particularly surprising given how much Hamilton had struggled in Friday practice in Montreal, with the last time he drove the car in the dry seeing him call it “a disaster” as he tried different set-up options.
“The balance I had on Friday was neutral, super positive, so no rear end. And as soon as you apply one degree of turning, the rear end’s come around.
“So, I was just fighting that constantly and it was very difficult to keep it out the wall. That’s why I didn’t finish my long run, because it was just undriveable in the set-up window that we tried.
“It was just an experiment, to see whether the car would work there, it didn’t. So, then we made the changes, and (the race) was a much, much better balance in terms of I had a little, nice amount of understeer, better traction, not having those snaps.
“It was a night and day difference. We still have bouncing, that’s not going away.”