Hamilton’s season hasn’t been catastrophic – he’s now "dangerous", says Webber

Mark Webber says everyone needs to get off Lewis Hamilton's back – because he's at his most dangerous when he's written off.

Hamilton has just one podium from the opening four races and finds himself seventh in the drivers' championship, some 21 points off Mercedes new boy George Russell.

His struggles have largely been down to car issues, particularly with porpoising, and he has all but admitted that he needs a miracle to win a record-breaking eighth title this year. But nine-time F1 race winner Webber, speaking at Formula E's Monaco race this weekend, says that Hamilton's season has not been as catastrophic as some have billed it.

He said: "I think people are being pretty harsh, pretty fast on Lewis. In Bahrain he drove brilliantly to third place. In Saudi there was a safety car involved there with a pit stop. Same in Melbourne.

"So I think there have been quite a few points he’s missed through no fault of his own and he was very quick in Melbourne in the race. But he lost a lot of time with that stop. It’s only Imola where he had a tricky quali and race. Of course, everyone’s forgetting how the other points were lost through no fault of his own.

"George (Russell) is driving brilliantly – very, very good for him – and it’s good to have the youngsters threatening the established drivers. That’s what it should be about – Lewis would never shy away from that. But never, ever underestimate an organisation like those guys (Mercedes).

"Lewis is at his most dangerous with his back against the wall. He’s never short of motivation – that’s why he’s probably the greatest of all time."

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Webber now works as an ambassador for Porsche in Formula E and thinks that the all-electric series is getting stronger and stronger by the year. Formula E introduced a knockout-style qualifying format this year and it has proven a hit with drivers and fans alike.

In previous years, a Hamilton vs Max Verstappen type rivalry would have been hard to create due to the randomness of the race results. But Webber believes FE are closer than ever before to having grandstand rivalries.

"There are always top drivers and top teams and this is naturally where the fans and people want to engage," he said. "To have their favourites. To start to get in a bit of relationship and bonding to that scenario.

"I think if we have a little bit more consistency, with a few guys that are constantly around each other and fighting for the top results, that will naturally cause at times maybe a bit more tension.

"Maybe a bit more interesting dynamics – within the races of course – and that's also great for the neutral at home, for the fans.

"We don't want the repetitive factor of obviously the same winner all the time – that won't happen in Formula E… but I think we were probably a little too far the other way in previous years."

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