Miami chicane ‘like a B&Q car park’, says Hamilton

In the round-up: Lewis Hamilton has likened the turn 14 and 15 chicane at the new Miami circuit to driving a kart around a supermarket car park.

In brief

Miami chicane ‘like a B&Q car park’, says Hamilton

Hamilton has likened the turn 14 and 15 chicane at the new Miami circuit to drive a kart around a supermarket car park.

The tight and twisty section in the second sector caused many challenges for drivers across Friday’s two practice sessions. Hamilton says that the circuit is characterised by bumps and questions the need for the chicane at turns 14 and 15.

“It’s kind of crazy when you think people in this day and age should be able to make a flat road relatively easy,” Hamilton said, “but there’s big, big bumps in so many places where the track joins up somewhere else. So I don’t know if they’ll be able to grind that at night or improve it.

“Otherwise the track’s quite nice to drive, except for the chicane. It’s so tight. It reminds me of being in a B&Q car park when I was seven years old in a go kart going between cars. Maybe in future they can remove that one and it’ll improve the track.”

Miami Grand Prix CEO Richard Cregan told RaceFans on Friday they do not intend to change the corner.

Norris not surprised by Mercedes pace in practice

Lando Norris says he is “not at all” surprised by Mercedes’ pace across the opening day of practice for the Miami Grand Prix.

George Russell went fastest of all on Friday, setting a 1’29.938 that was a tenth quicker than championship leader Charles Leclerc. Asked if he was surprised to see Mercedes so high up the timing screens, Norris replied “not at all”.

“They were P4, P5 in Bahrain,” Norris said. “They’ve been strong all year. Just because they have some bouncing, everyone expects them to be terrible. So no, not at all.

“They’re extremely strong in slow-speed corners. Mercedes has been probably one of the best cars in the slow speed all season, just no one ever looks at the GPS very well and picks it up. So not surprised in any way. It just makes us want to work even harder and try and get past them again.”

Ocon reprimanded for Russell pit lane near-miss

Esteban Ocon has been handed his first non-driving reprimand of the 2022 season after he almost drove into George Russell while leaving his garage at the start of first practice.

Mercedes released Russell from the garage on the green flag, with Ocon being released from his garage by his team. On seeing Russell approaching, an Alpine mechanic tried to signal to Ocon to stop, however he continued out onto the pit lane, forcing Russell to come to a stop.

After investigating the incident, the stewards handed Ocon a non-driving reprimand, his first of the season. The stewards cited Carlos Sainz Jnr receiving a non-driving reprimand for a similar incident at the Bahrain Grand Prix as for why Ocon was given an identical penalty.

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