Lewis Hamilton will have his work cut out for him this Sunday for the Bahrain Grand Prix as the 4-time champion faces a 5-place grid penalty for a gearbox change after Friday’s free practice sessions.
His teammate, Valtteri Bottas, also fitted a new gearbox but as he took a penalty in Australia for a gearbox change, he will suffer no penalty. According to Autosport, the inspection, under FIA supervision in Bahrain, discovered a hydraulic leak in Australia had damaged the gearbox.
Mercedes technical director, James Allison, said:
“It wasn’t our best day from a performance point of view,” he said.
“We’ve got more to do overnight and in the session tomorrow to give us a car that will allow us to have a good fight in qualifying and on Sunday.
“The base is OK but we have not yet found the sort of edge that we had in Melbourne.”
It will be a steep curve for Lewis and if Friday’s practice session was anything to go by, Ferrari may be in the pound seats for Sunday’s race. Anything can happen, of course, and with only three engines for the entire season, one could assume Ferrari will face a moment in the season where they too will need an extra gearbox or engine component.
Hat Tip: Autosport