F1: 2019 Australian Grand Prix Preview

F1: 2019 Australian Grand Prix Preview

F1: 2019 Australian Grand Prix Preview

"I'm confident the vehicle will be better here [than in testing], but if it's enough, we'll find out".

The German had appeared firmly in the title fight but his season seemed to take a downturn after failing to win the German Grand Prix, crashing out at the end having led the race.

The 34-year-old, who was dominant in 2018, is gunning to go one better than legendary five-time champion Juan Manuel Fangio and close in on Michael Schumacher's all-time record seven Formula One crowns. "Fun is to win a lot of races and then ultimately you are fighting for the championship", said the 31-year-old, who won four successive world championships at Red Bull from 2010-2013.

Mercedes stars Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas came on stage with team chief Toto Wolf, with the British driver snapped taking pictures of the supporters gathered in Melbourne. "We've been trying to plan with the team all my sponsor events a bit more in advance so I can plan my calendar a bit more around it, all the details in terms of travel, logistics, hotels, everything to help my wellbeing and performance, same thing with the training we try again to improve from previous year".

"That's obviously what we want but at this point it is very far away".

For the past two seasons Hamilton has clinched pole position in Melbourne but has seen fierce rival Sebastian Vettel clinch victory on the Sunday, he will be hoping for different fortunes this weekend.

"I don't think it's hard to read it, I think it's quite clear", the Briton said on Thursday.

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The new season boasts a host of driver changes throughout the grid and only two of the ten teams have relied upon last seasons drivers to deliver the goods.

Red Bull will be entering their new Honda era with Dutch hopeful Max Verstappen and Frenchman Pierre Gasly at the helm.

Three drivers make their race debuts in Australia - Lando Norris (McLaren), Alexander Albon (Toro Rosso) and George Russell (Williams).

Formula One is changing its scoring system to award a point to the driver who sets the fastest race lap.

It will also be an emotional weekend for Pole Robert Kubica, who reboots his F1 career with the struggling Williams team eight years after being seriously injured in a rally vehicle accident. A victor now gets 25 points with 18, 15, 12, 10, 8, 6, 4, 2 and one for the subsequent places.

'For sure it's a new challenge, ' said Vettel.

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