Lewis is a 'machine', says Mercedes' James Allison

James Allison (Mercedes) with Lewis Hamilton, Australian Grand Prix
© XPB 

Mercedes technical director James Allison says that Lewis Hamilton is a vital component in the team's push for a fifth consecutive world championship in 2018.

"Lewis turns into a machine at this time of year," said Allison in Singapore after the British driver romped to victory at a track normally seen as a 'bogey' circuit for Mercedes.

"He lifts his performance to a level that’s superb to watch," acknowledged Allison on Sunday.

Hamilton's performance in Singapore has certainly silenced critics of his busy globetrotting lifestyle. He had stunned fans and rivals alike with his pole position lap the previous day.

"I think from Lewis's side, it was stardust," team boss Toto Wolff had said after qualifying. "We knew what kind of split times that car was able to do and sector one and sector two when the purple times kept popping up it was surreal.

"That was his driving," he added. "The most epic lap I've ever seen from him."

Hamilton then didn't put a foot wrong in the race itself, even when harried by Max Verstappen behind lapped traffic. Even so, the Mercedes pit wall remained anxious throughout.

“It was a very nervous race for us," Allison insisted. "All the way through, a safety car could have snatched a well-earned lead from us at any point.

“Lewis got the job done," he continued. "But we’ve given him the car to do that, and that’s a huge source of pride for us.

"More importantly, we have put right the weaknesses that have plagued us at this circuit for a number of seasons and validated a lot of the theories and analysis of why we have suffered previously.

“There’s been a slow improvement of our performance in that regard," he continued, looking back at the progress the team had made in recent races compared to last season.

"In the last sector at Budapest, we were strong. Last year, we were dreadful in that sector. We’ve been chipping away at it over the past 12 months.”

Hamilton's victory on Sunday extends his lead in the drivers championship, and boosts Mercedes' advantage over Ferrari in the constructors standings. It certainly gave a huge boost to everyone at Brackley.

"A wonderful feeling of contentment washes through the whole team from the knowledge that we've done a good job here and increased our lead in both championships," said Allison.

"But this feeling, too, will last for about 10 more minutes before we begin fretting about Sochi," he added. "Our competition is desperately strong and the remaining races cover a very wide range of challenges."

"We are all aware that we need to keep having weekends like this one if we are to finally achieve the results that we so crave."

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