Mercedes drivers praise Schumacher for Spanish GP sim work

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Lewis Hamilton and George Russell paid credit to Mick Schumacher for the sim work conducted by the young German in Brackley last weekend that helped improve Mercedes' form overnight in Barcelona.

On Friday, Hamilton concluded his opening day of running at the Circuit de Catalunya just outside of the top ten, the Briton admitting to struggling with his car's single-lap pace as well as with tyre degradation.

As is typically the case for Mercedes' European races, the team relied on its reserve driver to virtually fine-tune the set-up of its W14 car after Friday's practice.

Schumacher thus ran through various programmes and configurations, well into the night in Brackley, to help optimize Mercedes' car and feed input to the team's race crews in Spain.

While qualifying was a mixed bag with Hamilton setting the fifth fastest lap and Russell ending his day P12, both drivers powered onto the podium on Sunday.

After Sunday's race, Hamilton praised Schumacher and Mercedes' crews in Brackley for their valuable contribution.

"Friday was a real struggle with the balance, it was way out of the window," Hamilton said. "It was very hard to drive, very unpredictable, and then we did some great work overnight.

"We’ve got a great team, with Mick back in the simulator on Friday night and he did some great work, which helped us get on the right track on Saturday.

"I think we did pretty decent work in trying to understand the different downforce levels. And in the race today the car felt great.

"But honestly I just couldn’t match the times that Max [Verstappen] was doing. And for George to come from 12th to third is just remarkable. So, really awesome result for us as a team."


Russell was equally laudatory of Schumacher's sim work back at the team's base that helped Mercedes' preparations for qualifying and race day.

"It probably felt the best it’s ever felt around Barcelona because of the cooler conditions," Russell said.

"But definitely this season, probably the best it’s felt, the most together it’s felt and as Lewis said, the team’s done a really, really great job.

"The work that Mick and the simulator team are doing overnight, they were there well past midnight to help us with the setup and get it in a good window for the race today.

"So we are making strides in the right direction. We just need to make sure, especially into next year, that we hit the ground running because I think we as a team probably develop faster than anybody else."

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