Lewis Hamilton: Mercedes driver still motivated to continue success with team

Max Verstappen is among Lewis Hamilton's challengers for the world championship

Max Verstappen is among Lewis Hamilton's challengers for the world championship

Bottas was first to drive the new vehicle on Friday before Hamilton took the wheel in the afternoon, and although 2020 could deliver a record-equaling seventh drivers' championship for the Briton, he says it does not have a major bearing on this stage of the season.

"I find it amusing seeing that", Hamilton replied. However, Mercedes have acknowledged that there were weaker areas in the car's design - particularly cooling - and Allison says regulation stability has not meant they can only search for small improvements.

The vehicle will hit the track for the first time at SIlverstone today with Hamilton and teammate Valtteri Bottas sharing 100km of running as part of a filming day. "I tend to see that as a sign of weakness".

"In the top teams, there isn't going to be a lot of movement", he said, after taking his latest Mercedes vehicle, the W11, for its first laps during a private session at Silverstone.

Heading into the 2020 season, Hamilton has the chance to make history on several fronts - but the biggest record on offer is the chance to tie Michael Schumacher's record of seven World Championships.

The team principal, Toto Wolff, believes his driver is relishing the forthcoming fight.

Ineos chairman Jim Ratcliffe and Toto Wolff reveal Mercedes' new livery for the 2020 season
Ineos chairman Jim Ratcliffe and Toto Wolff reveal Mercedes' new livery for the 2020 season

"I perceive that he feels that he is at the peak of his abilities", Wolff said. "The tougher the challenge, the happier he is".

The "same group" is Bottas, who was second last season, as well as Red Bull's Verstappen and the Ferrari drivers, Leclerc and Sebastian Vettel. When the W11 hit the track for the first time, however, he maintained there was no room for complacency.

'Every year I am trying to improve, take a step up, refine the game and the mental approach. I learnt a lot from this man and it's always an exciting moment - it's a real privilege that they want me to stay and be part of a great team, that's a great feeling.

"With a shorter winter testing programme, that last ticking everything off at the shakedown is proportionally more important so we are determined to squeeze every drop of goodness from it that we can".

"Every month you start later than your competitors will make it more hard to catch up".

As last year's vehicle struggled with cooling, the team have developed a new cooling package for this year. Hamilton and Bottas won 15 of the 21 races in 2019 to complete a remarkable record of six consecutive drivers' and constructors' championships. "This has been our mindset from the beginning".

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