British Grand Prix: Hamilton unhappy with big events clash

Mercedes F1 driver Lewis Hamilton
Lewis Hamilton has won the British Grand Prix at Silverstone five times

Lewis Hamilton has criticised the decision to hold the British Grand Prix on the same day as the Cricket World Cup and men's Wimbledon finals.

The Mercedes driver said he "didn't understand why they put the race on the same day as all these big events".

"It [the British GP] is such a special event and it needs all the attention," he said. "A lot of people will be switching between channels on Sunday.

"We all try to do the country proud and I am just going to try to do my bit."

Hamilton is bidding for a record sixth British Grand Prix victory, to move him clear of the mark he currently holds with Jim Clark and Alain Prost.

The five-time world champion has won the race four times in the past five years and starts the weekend as strong favourite on a track that is expected to suit his Mercedes car.

Mercedes have won eight of the first nine races, losing out in the last race in Austria because the hot conditions exposed the car's cooling limitations.

But Hamilton, who has won six races this season and leads the championship by 31 points from team-mate Valtteri Bottas, said he expected Mercedes to be stronger at Silverstone than they were at the Red Bull Ring.

"We are fully aware the Ferrari and Red Bull have taken a step forward but if we did not have the issues we have, we would have been in the fight [in Austria]," Hamilton said.

"This weekend it will be closer. Ferrari were quick here last year. Red Bull were a bit off but now they have a new engine I expect them to be better. It is definitely not going to be an easy weekend."

Hamilton said that the British Grand Prix meant "excitement, pressure, adrenalin".

"It's the most special because you have your family around supporting you. I've been really privileged to have some spectacular races here.

"Last weekend was a bit difficult for us. I think it will be close here but hopefully we will have a better shot."

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