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Hamilton dismayed by outcome of Barcelona track resurfacing

Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W09
© XPB 

Lewis Hamilton is less than thrilled with the new-look track at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.

Hamilton had only limited running time at the venue this week because of inclement conditions. Even so, he still went on to set the fastest time of the week.

Despite cold conditions and medium compound tyres, Hamilton's best lap of 1:19.333s was less than two tenths off the pole time he set for the 2017 Spanish Grand Prix.

However, Hamilton pointed out that direct comparisons are irrelevant because the track has been resurfaced in the interim.

"In all honesty, this track has got easier," he told reporters on Thursday. "Driving it today has been the easiest it’s been in the whole 10 years I’ve been driving.

He added that "it’s harder, it’s trickier" to drive a circuit when it's older and bumpier in nature.

"I like a track that is a bit more dated in terms of surface," he continued. "You’re going through a corner and the car starts moving a bit more. You have to be a bit more responsive. I like that challenge.

Hamilton said he couldn't understand why drivers' pre-race meetings were always full of complaints about bumps.

"That’s where the character of a circuit is. You flatten it all out and it's got a bunch of corners but it’s missing something.

"You can manoeuvre around bumps and you can brake a bit off line. Or you have to set the car up to deal with it better in terms of ride.

"When you smooth it out, you make it easier," he insisted. "If you smooth the thing out, you lose a lot of the character that a track like Barcelona has."

Hamilton said he would prefer it if venues just left their tracks to age gracefully.

"I’m not quite sure why they do resurface," he commented. "I think it’s a waste of money in general.

"The older the surface, the more character there is in a surface," he said, comparing it to an old house with personality.

"A brand new house has got no character. But if you go and buy an old house, it’ll always have a little bit more history and a little bit more character."

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