Lewis Hamilton has excused his former team-mate and bitter rival Fernando Alonso for his well-publicised post-European Grand Prix tirade just over a week ago, reflecting that in such an 'intense' situation as the title battle is in F1 2010, 'we're all feeling the pressure'.
Alonso argued that the result of the race around Valencia's harbourside streets had been 'manipulated' – given that he had effectively been far more heavily punished for 'respecting the rules' regarding overtaking the safety car than Hamilton, who did not and went on to finish second compared to the Spaniard's eighth place in the final reckoning – and asserted that even 'all the kids in the stands know that you cannot pass the safety car'.
The 2008 F1 World Champion responded by accusing Alonso of 'sour grapes', but he has since moved to quell the escalating war of words between the pair – who endured a famously frosty and ultimately destructive relationship at McLaren-Mercedes back in 2007 that resulted in the latter packing his bags two years early to return to Renault – by contending that with tensions higher than ever this season, outbursts like that of the Oviedo native and his own radio rant at his team in Melbourne will be unfortunate but inevitable by-products.
“It doesn't worry me,” the current world championship leader told British media, as he approaches his home grand prix at Silverstone this coming weekend. “I'll just keep focussed on my job.
“We're all feeling the pressure. It's the most intense season so far for all of us. You've seen even with me this year, when you put your whole heart and passion into it you are not always correct with what you say. I had that experience in Australia, you know, so we all do it.”
“When you have a go in racing cars, you are going to get incidents, you are going to get controversy and you are going to get two drivers who see an incident from completely different perspective,” echoed McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh, quoted by AFP
“Alonso was fairly outspoken, but actually people want a bit of that, and it doesn't worry me. In the past you have not been able to question. There has to be a limit, some fine lines, but not being able to question a referee's decisions, or umpire's decisions or stewards' decision. And frankly, you have not been able to do that.”