Lewis Hamilton believes his emphatic win in the Spanish Grand Prix could be a turning point for his season.

The Mercedes driver seldom looked threatened as he converted pole position into victory in Spain, taking the chequered flag 20 seconds ahead of team mate Valtteri Bottas.

“I think it’s obviously a little bit early to say but I would like to hope that it could be part of a turning point,” said Hamilton.

“Race by race we’re understanding the tyres more, which is a big battle for everyone. We could just as easily go to the next race and struggle getting our tyres working and be nowhere. So, it’s a little bit early to say.”

Before the weekend began Hamilton felt the team were further behind with their car than they had been at the same track 12 months ago. But their strong weekend has given him extra confidence.

“We do, after the five races, now have a much, much better understanding of the car [and] of what we need to do to get the car to be working.

“But we still have learning to do, improvements to be made. We still need to add performance to the car throughout the year, so that’s what we’re going to be continuing to be working on.”

Mercedes scored their first one=two of the season in Spain. Valtteri Bottas was running third behind Sebastian Vettel when the Ferrari driver lost the position by making a second pit stop.

However Bottas believes he was quick enough to beat Vettel in a straight fight. “It felt like I had a lot more pace all through the race,” he said.

“As everyone knows it’s extremely difficult to overtake here and I could always put pressure on him when we needed – but you need such a big gap between the pace to get through.

“We were waiting for the next opportunity as we missed the first opportunity during the first pit stop, waiting for the second pit stop if we could have done anything. I think there would have been a chance and I think with the strong car we had today, there would have been opportunities later.”

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2018 F1 season

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