Lewis Hamilton says he found it “amusing” that Red Bull was actively pushing the FIA to ban the use of qualifying engine modes in Formula 1.

From this weekend’s Italian Grand Prix at Monza, teams will be restricted to using a single engine setting for the entire race weekend following a technical directive issued by the FIA.

Teams will no longer be able to change the power modes on their engines between qualifying and the race in a move that was expected to rein in some of Mercedes’ advantage.

But Mercedes and its rivals actually anticipate it will ultimately make the reigning world championship-winning squad even more competitive on Sundays.

“I find it kind of amusing,” Hamilton said. “Because the FIA said that it was so they could manage everyone’s usage of the engine, or something like that, and then Red Bull came and said: ‘we were the ones pushing for it’.

“So, there’s completely different reasons why they did it.”

And Hamilton believes Mercedes’ engineers should take the regulation change as a “compliment”.

“Hopefully the guys back in the factory are looking at is as a compliment that they’ve done just a fantastic job with the engine,” he explained.

“We will continue to work and improve with the situation that we’re given. It’ll be interesting to see how it plays out.”

The Briton revealed he enjoyed the element of being able to control how he uses his engine but said it will ultimately make life easier for drivers.

“I like being able to control when you use some of the life of the engine, and where you save it,” he added.

“It’s been a strength of mine in terms of where you save engine mileage through the year, making it last longer. They take a bit of that away.

“But it means we have to worry less about switching over to anything else.”

 

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