Lewis Hamilton has higher hopes for the Monaco Grand Prix than he has on his previous two visits following the progress Mercedes has made with its car.

Mercedes will bring some circuit-specific changes to its car this weekend but no further performance upgrades following the new parts introduced at the previous two rounds. However he considered the W15 a step forward over its two predecessors.

“We don’t have any upgrades this weekend,” he told the official F1 channel. “We had basically the package spread over two weekends in the last two races.

“We have our highest downforce level, which everyone has here, and we have an evolved wing, but otherwise we don’t really know where we’re going to be this weekend.

“I’m definitely feeling more excited about it compared to the previous two cars, because those two were not so great. This one’s a real work in progress and I think it hopefully should be a lot better here at than least it was last year.”

Hamilton finished fourth on his last visit to Monaco and eighth the year before that. He is yet to finish a grand prix in the top five this year, and although he is happier at the wheel of Mercedes’ latest car, he is unsure how competitive they might be.

“We’re at the the whims of simulation tools and figuring out how grippy the surface is, how bumpy it is, how high or how low you can put the car, high-to-low speed balance, mechanical balance, weight distribution, cambers, toes, all these things,” he said. “There are so many things that you have that come into the picture and you can practice on the simulator, but it’s not ’til you get to the actual track that you discover issues that you may or may not have.

“In the perfect world you hit the ground running and you don’t look back but it’s not been the case for the last couple of years. But as I said I am more confident going into this weekend. This car is much more predictable and much more enjoyable to drive. Still not perfect, but it is progressing in the right direction.”

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