The end of the practice sessions at the 2023 F1 Monaco Grand Prix didn’t quite go in the way of Lewis Hamilton as he crashed out in the Mercedes W14 on turn 5, triggering a red flag. Since only a little over five minutes were left in the session, it wasn’t resumed by the stewards.
At the moment of the crash, Hamilton was on a hot lap on soft tires. Nearing turn 5, Alex Albon was blue-flagged and made enough way for the Mercedes that was going downhill.
The Briton meanwhile, turned in, a bit too much, perhaps, since he lost the rear of the car a little bit. To correct the oversteer, he turned to the left quickly, hitting the wall and breaking his suspension.
Lewis Hamilton was perfectly okay after the crash, however, his car, after being picked up by the crane, hung around before being suspended in the sky, going through the buildings of Monaco.
Fans on Twitter took this quite comically, here are some of the best reactions.
“mercedes gives you wings”
“BE CAREFUL with car 44”
“Finally the upgrades worked!”
Are Mercedes’ new upgrades working for Lewis Hamilton?
Mercedes introduced a major new upgrade at Monaco, which is quite a visible change in the design of their sidepod design. The team previously had a ‘zero pod’ design but it seems they’ve gotten over it after the start of this season with the W14.
Although it looked promising, Lewis Hamilton hasn’t quite been near the top of the practice sessions. Toto Wolff, the team principal, mentioned that there has been no negative feedback from the new upgrade, however, not promising a stronger pace at the same time. Motorsport quoted Wolff:
“It’s difficult with Monaco, really difficult to judge. But at least we haven’t seen any behaviour of the car that would have been deemed as really negative.”
It is to be noted that the team was originally going to introduce this new upgrade at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, but since it was called off (because of the flooding situation around the region), they decided to bring it to Monaco.
The two tracks are polar opposites of each other. Monaco is arguably the slowest race on the calendar, and it is apparent why it is hard to notice any changes from the upgrades. Nevertheless, Lewis Hamilton has been in the top 10 during all three practice sessions.