JONATHAN McEVOY: Lewis Hamilton says he suffered the most painful race of his CAREER in Baku… but if his bouncing horror of a Mercedes ‘s***box’ was the cause of the discomfort, his 37 years hardly helped him as he battled to finish fourth

Even if there was a hint of Olivier playing Lear about Lewis Hamilton’s agonised climb out of his car, the damage done to his back may be so severe he could miss Sunday’s Canadian Grand Prix. That was the verdict of Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff after this bumpy race in Azerbaijan won by defending champion Max Verstappen for Red Bull, as Ferrari suffered the terrible humiliation of a double retirement. Hamilton claimed he almost crashed during what he called the most painful race of his career in a car Wolff described as a ‘s***box’. At this stage in the new era of Formula One, eight races in, they are third best, way off Red Bull and Ferrari. Hamilton, who started seventh, was 71 seconds behind the free-rolling Verstappen — as well as 25 adrift of Russell, who read the party script on Saturday evening, calling the 2022 cars ‘dangerous’ and a ‘recipe for disaster’ after qualifying fifth.

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