Lewis Hamilton: Mechanics were 'my soldiers' before Mercedes swap
"When you work with a group of guys so closely you build a bond," says Lewis; Mercedes swapped his and Rosberg's mechanics at start of the season
By Matt Morlidge in Barcelona
Last Updated: 14/05/16 1:26pm
Lewis Hamilton admits he still doesn't know why his and Nico Rosberg's mechanics were swapped by Mercedes but is convinced success is around the corner with his new crew.
The world champion has slipped 43 points behind his team-mate having been blighted by engine failures in 2016 with some social media conspiracy theorists linking his problems to a change of mechanics at the start of the season.
Hamilton has repeatedly backed his team and, when asked by Sky F1's Martin Brundle why Mercedes decided to mix it up, said: "I don't know! I can't answer that for you.
"I thought there was good chemistry but I have to say I'm really happy with how things are now, I've got a great group of guys."
But would he rather have kept a winning team together?
"When you work with a group of guys so closely you build a bond. It's hard to explain but they're your soldiers, that's your squad," Hamilton continued.
"For sure, it was emotional for all of us, those that were really connected in that way. So much success and ups and downs we've had because that's what you experience together.
"It was difficult in the beginning but now I can experience that with new guys who are just as enthusiastic and just as driven to win."
Mercedes will run an improved MGU-H on Hamilton's car at the Spanish GP in a bid to solve reliability problems and while the Englishman accepts it will be tough not to exceed his engine limit this season, he is also fearful of a 10-place grid penalty for reprimands.
Hamilton received his second rap of the campaign in Russia, which he labelled "ridiculous", and drivers are only allowed three before being punished with a 10-place grid penalty.
He added in Barcelona: "I think afterwards I was like, if you're going to penalise me, give me a fine and put the money towards a road safety campaign - do something positive at least.
"But knowing that now I have one more reprimand before a 10-place penalty, it's kind of senseless. They could have fined me whatever it is and put that towards a good cause."
Watch the Spanish GP live on Sky Sports F1. The race starts at 1pm on Sunday, with build-up underway at 11.30am. Or watch the race without a contract for £6.99 on NOW TV.