hamilton needs time to adjust to mercedes car

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Lewis Hamilton cannot wait until he finally feels at one with his Mercedes, a moment that is likely to make the rest of the Formula 1 world sit up and take notice.

Five months on from the day Hamilton first stepped into the car on the opening day of testing in Jerez in early February, he is still struggling to get to grips with the W04.

That may sound surprising when you consider the 28-year-old’s pole lap at Silverstone on Saturday ahead of the British Grand Prix when he blew away the rest of the field by four tenths of a second.

For a driver not at home with his car, it was an extraordinary feat, and suggests there is so much more to come from Hamilton once he has resolved his issues.

“It was a nice lap, but I don’t know if I’m going to get that for a while. I really don’t know,” said Hamilton, after setting the eighth quickest time in practice ahead of tomorrow’s German Grand Prix. “I’ve not been feeling 100 per cent in this car for some reason. It’s the first year in my life I’ve not felt 100 per cent in a car.

“When you drive a Formula 1 car you really need to feel connected to it to be able to throw it in to places that other people can’t. That’s how you gain the advantage.

“It is an incredible car, just not as easy as what I’ve experienced before (at McLaren) because I drove a car for a long period of time so every year it evolved – the brake set-up, seat position, control systems – to how I liked to use it.

“I’ve just arrived in a car that’s been developed for Nico and for Michael (Schumacher), so it’s taking some time to adapt it to how I like to drive. But considering the results I’ve had so far with that feeling, I’m excited for the rest of the year.

“It is definitely a positive. When I do feel 100 per cent in this car, I am looking forward to that moment. I’m working very hard to overcome the problems and to extract the most from the car, so when I do I’m looking forward to seeing the results.”

Asked if he could take the title, with the Briton currently 43 points adrift of three-times champion Sebastian Vettel, Hamilton said: “I don’t think that at the moment. But this team has the potential to win the championship. Whether it’s this year or next year, we’ll see.”