First look at Mercedes W15 on-track as Lewis Hamilton and George Russell in action

Jamie Woodhouse
Mercedes have unveiled the W15.

Mercedes have unveiled the W15.

Lewis Hamilton and George Russell enjoyed stints at the wheel of Mercedes’ F1 2024 challenger, the W15, on a soggy day at Silverstone.

F1 2024 launch season rolled on as Wednesday, February 14 came around, with both McLaren and Mercedes taking the covers off their new creations, the MCL38 and W15 respectively.

And after that it was time for the challengers to be put through their paces at Silverstone, home of the British Grand Prix.

Lewis Hamilton gets first taste of final Mercedes challenger

Mercedes went back to the drawing board for the W15 after a winless 2023 campaign, in the hope that this will be the challenger to fire them back into the title conversation.

And it was Russell who got the 200km W15 filming day underway, rolling out of the garage onto a wet and cold Silverstone track.

Russell heads into F1 2024 targeting an improved campaign, after failing to build on a superb start to life in Brackley which saw him outscore Hamilton across the 2022 campaign, as well as pick up their most recent victory at the 2022 Brazilian Grand Prix.

The Brit also knows that a huge opportunity awaits to establish himself as the lead Mercedes driver looking beyond F1 2024, with seven-time World Champion Hamilton gearing up for his last season with the team before joining forces with Ferrari.

And after Russell had sampled the W15, then it was over to Hamilton to get an early read on his final dose of Mercedes machinery. recommends

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Speaking at the launch of the W15, Hamilton admitted that it was “very emotional and surreal” to witness the unveiling of Mercedes’ F1 2024 challenger, knowing Ferrari launches are what awaits in his future.

“It’s obviously been emotional,” he said.

“It’s very surreal to be here, given that I came here in 2013 – 11 years with the team, starting my 12th.

“The focus through the whole of winter training is getting the team back to where we once were.

“We’ve had this difficult couple of years which I think has been really grounding for us. It’s helped us regroup.

“We’ve had to relook [sic] at things and it’s now just going through the important process – being really diligent with our work, understanding the data, understanding the car, maximising for practice.

“Even just the one lap we might get in the rain today might give George and I a bit of a feeling of what’s to come.”

Hamilton will very much hope to conclude his Mercedes era on a high, having not tasted victory since the 2021 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix. A record-breaking eighth World Championship triumph would serve as the perfect closing chapter.

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