Lewis Hamilton moans at mystery voice for giving him too much information

Lewis Hamilton’s relationship with his Mercedes engineer Peter Bonnington is one of the most recognisable in Formula 1.

Known as Bono, Bonnington has guided Hamilton to the majority of his F1 race wins and titles, and has regularly been a steadying voice at times of high pressure. Therefore, it was a surprise to hear a new voice talking to Hamilton in practice ahead of this weekend’s Austrian Grand Prix, and it seems the pair need to work on their communication judging by an early exchange during free practice one.

After the engineer issued a list of instructions, Hamilton replied: “That was a lot of information, I didn’t understand what you just said. I didn’t understand what you said, mate. What did you say about the switch?”

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At that point, the engineer repeated the message more clearly. The individual in question is a person well known to Hamilton, his performance engineer Marcus Dudley.

As for Bonnington, he is working this weekend but from the team’s base in Brackley. He will fulfil most of his usual tasks, aside from speaking to his driver over the radio.

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The session, the only one before this afternoon’s qualifying session, was interrupted by two red flags, first when Lando Norris’s McLaren broke down and had to be removed from the side of the track and then when a piece of debris had to be removed from the racing line.

Max Verstappen set the fastest time of the session, 0.255 clear of Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc. George Russell was third ahead of Sergio Perez while Hamilton was 0.607 off Verstappen’s time in fifth. Kevin Magnussen rounded out the top six as Haas made a strong start to the weekend.

As it is a sprint weekend, qualifying will take place later today, with the second and final practice session on Saturday ahead of the Sprint, which will set the grid for Sunday’s race.


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