Fed up Hamilton not the racer he was - Ecclestone

Reigning Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton is "fed up" and "not the racer he was", according to Bernie Ecclestone.

Hamilton has endured a difficult start to 2018, with Sebastian Vettel winning the opening two races before Red Bull's strategic foresight saw Daniel Ricciardo claim victory last time out in China.

The Mercedes man, who is yet to sign an extension to his contract that is due to expire at the end of the campaign, trails Vettel by nine points in the drivers' standings ahead of this weekend's Azerbaijan Grand Prix.

Having been hit by technical, mechanical and tactical problems already this season, former F1 supremo Ecclestone thinks Hamilton may be struggling to stay motivated.

"He doesn't seem to be the Lewis that he was before," he told Sky Sports.

"I don't know whether it's me - but when you talk to him and see him act the way he acts generally, he's not the racer he was.

"He's still very quick, still super talented, still a super nice guy.

"But maybe he's just getting a little bit tired of travelling and he's fed up with things."

Hamilton's troubles could be set to continue in Baku. He was almost one second slower than Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas, who topped the timesheets in FP1 on ultrasoft tyres on Friday.

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