F1 »

Hamilton evoking 'podium' rather than win in Valencia

Lewis Hamilton may have been virtually unchallenged on his way to pole position for the European Grand Prix in Valencia this weekend, but the defending F1 World Champion spoke afterwards of his prospects of achieving a podium on race day, rather than making it back-to-back triumphs.

Hamilton and McLaren-Mercedes arrived in the Spanish city riding the crest of a wave following their first victory of a trying 2009 campaign four weeks' earlier, in the Hungarian Grand Prix in Budapest. Whilst the tight and twisty nature of the Valencia Street Circuit was always expected to suit the MP4-24 well, a front row lock-out for Hamilton and team-mate Heikki Kovalainen – the first since Hungary last year – was still something of a surprise, and the subsequently published car weights betrayed the fact that both drivers had fuelled their cars comparatively lightly for the opening stint of the grand prix in order to steal an edge around a track at which it is notoriously difficult to overtake [see separate story – click here].

Be that as it may, the result nonetheless confirmed the fact that the former multiple world championship-winning, Woking-based outfit is rapidly regaining its form – and Hamilton admitted that he hopes that progression will continue into 2010.

“Some you win, some you lose,” he mused phlegmatically. “For sure it would have been fantastic for us to have been competing for the world championship and there's no doubt that us as a team, for me and Heikki, we are good enough to be able to do that, but it's just unfortunate circumstances that we missed the chance. All we have to do now is just continue to push our car and hope that next year's rules are similar to this year's, so that we can develop through this year and hopefully go into next year with a better car.”

As to the task in-hand, Hamilton acknowledged that he was delighted to be back at the very front of the starting grid again for the first time in more than ten months – and he equally recognises the fact that he and Kovalainen will need to make a KERS-aided breakaway at the start if they are not to be overhauled during the pit-stops by longer-running rivals.

“Clearly we have very good pace this weekend,” underlined the Stevenage-born ace, “myself and Heikki – he especially did a fantastic job through qualifying. It was very close between me and him. It was great to see us both there, because I think both of us have been wanting a one-two qualifying experience for a long time. It is great to be here.

“Coming into the weekend we thought we'd be competitive, but I don't think any of us really knew whether we'd be competing for the front row. It's a great result for us – the team has well deserved it. It's just great to know that we can continue with the momentum from the last race.

“Fortunately I managed to do a couple of good laps, so I did not have to do too many. It wasn't perfect and there are always still improvements that you can make, but for sure going into the race we stand in the best position for myself and Heikki for a podium. It all depends on strategy and how the start goes and how the rest of the race goes.

“We still have a little bit of a loose rear end. Inevitably on my pole position lap it was OK – it was quite a good lap. The second lap was better but in a lot of places I lost chunks of time, so hopefully there should be a little bit more time in it and hopefully we will be able to extract that for the race.”




Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren MP4-23, Canadian F1 Grand Prix, Montreal, 6th-8th, June, 2008
21.09.2014 - Race, Celebration, Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 is applauded by his team
21.09.2014 - Race, Celebration, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 race winner with Jurgen Hubbert (GER), Mercedes
21.09.2014 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 race winner
21.09.2014 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 race winner
21.09.2014 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 race winner
21.09.2014 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 race winner
21.09.2014 - Race, 2nd position Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB10
21.09.2014 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 race winner
21.09.2014 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 race winner
21.09.2014 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 race winner
21.09.2014 - Race, 3rd position Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB10
21.09.2014 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 race winner
21.09.2014 - Race, Pit stop, Kevin Magnussen (DEN) McLaren Mercedes MP4-29
21.09.2014 - Race, 2nd position Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB10
21.09.2014 - Race, Pit stop,Kevin Magnussen (DEN) McLaren Mercedes MP4-29
21.09.2014 - Race, Pit stop, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05
21.09.2014 - Race, Pit stop, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05

Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.




© 1999 - 2014 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.