Hamilton: We can compete with the top cars

Lewis Hamilton is happy with the fifth place he secured at the 2013 F1 season opener in Melbourne.

“I always like to go forwards rather than backwards, but overall it is a really good step for the team,” Hamilton commented. “It was great. I’m really happy, way better than we ever expected for the first grand prix, so it’s a good place to start.

“We’ve a good platform to work from. The car felt good and I enjoyed every moment. The only thing is we’re going to have to figure out where we lost time to other people.

“I don’t know how they managed to pull away from us so quickly at the start, but we’ll keep pushing and we’ll get there eventually.

“We’ve a good chance to close up because we’ve some good things in the pipeline. I really feel we can compete with those guys.”

However Hamilton is won’t be drawn on whether he thinks the Mercedes is a winning car.

“Only time will tell,” he said. “If we look back maybe some of the guys will feel a bit frustrated we didn’t finish where we started from, or even further forward. But that’s a good feeling to have because we came here not knowing what would happen.”

Commenting on next week’s race in Malaysia Hamilton said, “It’s going to be tough, but hopefully we can have a better race there and get a better result.”