Lewis Hamilton left frustrated as Toto Wolff demands F1 changes

Hamilton opens up on plans to remain in F1 ahead of 2023 season

Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff labelled the Azerbaijan Grand Prix ‘boring’ after Lewis Hamilton and George Russell were both frustrated in Baku. The Silver Arrows pair struggled to overtake their rivals as Sergio Perez sealed a comfortable win to extend Red Bull’s early season dominance.

Hamilton spent the latter stages of the race hunting down Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz in fifth, finishing less than a second behind the Spaniard.

But even despite being within DRS range, the seven-time world champion couldn’t pass Sainz and had to settle for sixth.

Russell endured similar annoyance behind Aston Martin’s Lance Stroll before eventually giving up the chase to pit for soft tyres and set the fastest lap for an extra point.

In the 2023 race in Baku, 100m was removed from the DRS zone, which seemingly led to fewer overtakes than in previous years.

And Wolff has called on F1 to explore ways to improve the entertainment factor of the sport in future.

Sergio Perez wins Azerbaijan GP as Hamilton and Russell struggle[REPORT]

He told reporters: “There was no overtaking, even with a big pace difference. It made it not great entertainment.

“We have to analyse the weekend with the sprint format, whether there’s positives we can take out.

“In the end, it all comes down to racing. It needs the tough battles, and I think the highlight you could see yesterday was George and Max being able to battle it out, and today there was none of that.

“Even if you were within 0.2 seconds, it was very difficult to overtake. It was nearly impossible to overtake unless the other driver made a mistake. We need to really look at it and how we can make it better.

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“Not how we can make it better… We need to look at how we can avoid just a boring race. I’m not sure that 100m more DRS would have made a difference.”

The most entertainment involving a Mercedes driver on race weekend came a day before the Grand Prix when Russell engaged in a verbal spat with Max Verstappen.

The young duo touched on the first lap of Saturday’s sprint race, leaving Verstappen unhappy with Russell before unleashing his fury after they exited their cars.

Hamilton and Russell’s sixth and eighth-place finishes leave Mercedes third in the constructors’ standings behind Red Bull and Aston Martin.

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