F1 »

Hamilton: 'Harsh struggle' of 2009 made me 'wiser' in 2010

As he endeavours to reclaim his hard-fought drivers' crown in the top flight, former F1 World Champion Lewis Hamilton contends that the lessons and 'harsh struggle' of 2009 have left him 'wiser' in 2010...
Back at the scene of what was indisputably the nadir of his F1 career to-date and the beginning of what he describes as a season-long 'harsh struggle', former world champion Lewis Hamilton has revealed that the trials and tribulations of last year have served to leave him 'wiser' and mould him into a more complete driver and more rounded person in 2010.

It was in the immediate wake of the 2009 Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne that the McLaren-Mercedes star found himself embroiled in what was up until the explosive 'Singapore-gate' scandal, the greatest controversy of the year. Caught deliberately lying to Albert Park race stewards in an effort to see Toyota rival Jarno Trulli unjustly stripped of his third place and thereby inherit the position for himself, Hamilton was disqualified from the results and universally vilified – and his reputation all around the globe took a battering.

Forced into making a grovelling public apology less than a week later in the full glare of the world's media in Malaysia, the 25-year-old tried to explain his actions by insisting that he too had been 'misled' by respected long-time McLaren team manager Dave Ryan, who was offered up as a scapegoat and consequently dismissed from the squad for whom he had successfully worked for more than three decades.

Hamilton subsequently confessed that the spectacular fall-out from the incident had caused him to re-evaluate his place in F1 – to the point where he even considered walking away. However, having both overcome the most painful episode of his career thus far and helped the Woking-based outfit to battle back from the rear of the field to more accustomed front-running form come season's end – with a brace of victories, three further rostrum finishes and four pole positions over the second half of the campaign – the sport's youngest-ever title-winner is adamant that important lessons have been learned and that he is the best he has ever been twelve months on.

“I think [from] just maturing and learning and perhaps making better decisions, [I'm now] a little bit wiser than I was back then,” the British ace is quoted as having said by Reuters. “I think you just continue to grow. Coming to the race now, I think that every year you feel you make another step. It doesn't happen that quick, but you feel that you make a step.

“Last year was a long, harsh struggle but we got back to the top and I was able to work on different sides of my driving. When you're at the back, you have more time to focus on other areas. Once I got to the front I felt I was stronger, and I ended up on a high and I think I rolled with that into this year.”

Indeed, a podium finish in the F1 2010 curtain-raising Bahrain Grand Prix earlier this month was arguably more than his McLaren-Mercedes MP4-25 deserved – and as he bids to add another one to his record Down Under, the eleven-time grand prix-winner conceded that both he and team-mate Jenson Button will need to focus more on qualifying, with grid positions having largely decided the outcome in the processional Sakhir opener.

“Definitely,” Hamilton affirmed, “because our race pace is not too bad and our understanding of the car felt very good in the race. I think clearly the most important part for us is to get the qualifying sorted, [and] understand how to get the most out of the car on that single lap.”



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-25
Barcelona, Spain, Lewis Hamilton (GBR), McLaren Mercedes - Formula 1 Testing, Barcelona
12.02.2010 Jerez, Spain, lLewis Hamilton (GBR), McLaren Mercedes, running a sensor in the sidepods - Formula 1 Testing, Jerez, Spain
Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-25
Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-25
Kimi Raikkonen tests the 2017 F1 tyres in Abu Dhabi [credit: Pirelli]
Lewis Hamilton tests the 2017 F1 tyres in Abu Dhabi [credit: Pirelli]
Daniel Ricciardo tests the 2017 F1 tyres in Abu Dhabi [credit: Pirelli]
Kimi Raikkonen tests the 2017 F1 tyres in Abu Dhabi [credit: Pirelli]
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Pirelli 2017 tyre test [Credit: Pirelli]
27.11.2016 - Race, Celebration, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid race winner
27.11.2016 - Race, Celebration, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid race winner
27.11.2016 - Race, Celebration, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid race winner
27.11.2016 - Race, Celebration, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid race winner
27.11.2016 - Race, Celebration, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid race winner
27.11.2016 - Race, Celebration, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid race winner
27.11.2016 - Race, Celebration, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid race winner
27.11.2016 - Race, Celebration, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid race winner

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 - 2016 Crash Media Group

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