Red Bull advisor Marko Helmut believes Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton is largely responsible for the disappointing start that the Silver Arrows have endured this season.

Although Mercedes stands P2 in the constructors’ standings, they have encountered problems throughout pre-season testing and the first two rounds.

Seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton has been in dominant form for a number of years in F1.

He was happy to pick up a lucky podium finish in the season-opener held in Bahrain, but was brought back to reality with a P10 finish in Jeddah.

George Russell, who has joined him at the team this year, has fared far more consistently, putting in two top-5 finishes.

Although Russell seems far more comfortable than Hamilton at the moment, Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko believes it is too early to say whether this trend will continue throughout the season.

Marko criticised Hamilton for a “grave mistake” in Bahrain and claimed that this has derailed Hamilton’s championship run.

“No, Russell is not at Hamilton’s level yet. Lewis completely screwed up in Bahrain, and since then he’s been struggling with the set-up and getting the tyres into the right temperature window,” Marko told Österreich.

What changes does Hamilton need to incorporate?

Lewis Hamilton. Credit: autoweek.com

Marko was uncertain about exactly what Hamilton needs to change in his setup and said it depends on a number of factors.

“Many things play a role, such as tyre pressure, wear and so on. Of course, the feeling of the drivers is also important. And we know what we have in Max. He is expensive, but he is worth every cent,” Marko said.

Knowing Hamilton and Mercedes’ competitive spirit, one can argue it is only a matter of time before he receives the required upgrade to give him a much-needed boost.

It will be disconcerting, though, for Mercedes to ensure that this happens. The Silver Arrows did, of course, lose more than 50 engineers to Red Bull recently and this too seems to have caused a bit of a problem in the paddock.

However, with 21 races still to go in the season, the sample size so far is far too small to rule Mercedes and Hamilton out at this stage.

Do you think Hamilton will challenge for the 2022 world championship? Let us know in the comments.

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