Hamilton encouraged by Mercedes pace advantage

By on Friday, October 3, 2014
Mercedes AMG Petronas

Mercedes AMG Petronas

Lewis Hamilton says he is encouraged by Mercedes's pace advantage following Friday's practice sessions for the Japanese Grand Prix at Suzuka.

Hamilton topped the second session ahead of team-mate Nico Rosberg, with Brit over a second faster than third-placed driver Valtteri Bottas.

"The gap changes from track to track between us and other cars but it looks pretty good so far this weekend," he said. "To come here at one of the most demanding tracks for downforce and to be that competitive is fantastic.

"The pace looks good but it's a track that's very hard on tyres, especially the rears; one minute you have the one lap pace and one minute you have the long run pace, so it's a very fine line.

"Qualifying is going to be very important as it's quite difficult to overtake here. We don't know what's going to happen with the weather this weekend; it's such a challenging circuit but we always come to the weekend prepared for everything. I just want to race."

Rosberg was also upbeat over Mercedes's prospects.

"We are very quick on one lap and also on high fuel levels," he said.

"My long run was very good this afternoon, so I'm quite confident for a good race here."

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