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Hamilton loses championship lead

Britain's Lewis Hamilton slipped down to second place in the battle for the F1 2010 drivers' title today after a mechanical problem meant he failed to finish the Hungarian Grand Prix.
McLaren's Lewis Hamilton has said he is 'certain' they will be able to fight back and regain top spot in the battle for the F1 2010 drivers' title, despite a very disappointing Hungarian Grand Prix today.

Hamilton looked on course to secure good points and was up to fourth, between the Ferraris of Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa, when a mechanical problem sidelined him around a third of the way into the race.

It was a bitter blow for the Englishman, as it was his first retirement of the year, and he now drops to second in the drivers' championship, four points behind Budapest victor, Mark Webber, with seven rounds to go.

"I was accelerating out of Turn One when I felt a sudden vibration and then a loss of drive," Hamilton said. "I initially thought it was a driveshaft failure, but it now appears that it was a gearbox problem.

"Actually, I may have had an issue with the gearbox from the very beginning of the race, when I initially feared I had a brake-related vibration. Whatever, it's a bit of a shame because, as always, the guys had worked very, very hard all weekend, and I think we'd done more than enough in the race to get up to the front and score some decent points.

"It's a pity to have a fault at this stage in the year, but that's racing – when you push the car to the limit, these things can happen.

"We'll learn from this, though, and we'll just have to work even harder to make sure we don't have any further problems this year, and that we can catch back up to the front-runners – which I'm certain we'll be able to do."

McLaren team boss, Martin Whitmarsh meanwhile was also disappointed, as not only did they lose the lead in the drivers' championship, but they also lost top spot in the Constructors' too and now lie 8 points adrift of Red Bull.

The only slight bit of good news for the Woking-based outfit was that Jenson Button salvaged four points by coming home in eighth.

Like Hamilton though, Whitmarsh pledged they will do everything in their power now to come back at Red Bull: "Obviously, we're disappointed with our haul of world championship points here in Hungary," he said. "But we remain in hot contention for the drivers' world championship and the constructors' world championship, and it's all still to play for in the last seven grands prix of the season.

"After the summer shutdown, we'll come back fully refreshed and utterly determined to apply ourselves as hard as is humanly possible to take world championship honours this season. We've got lots of good people, we've got lots of good ideas, and we're prepared to do lots of work. We always knew that this year's world championship was going to be a tough battle, but we're up for that tough battle – so bring it on!"

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Lewis Hamilton (GBR), McLaren Mercedes, MP4-25
Lewis Hamilton (GBR), McLaren Mercedes, MP4-25
Lewis Hamilton (GBR), McLaren Mercedes, MP4-25
Lewis Hamilton (GBR), McLaren Mercedes, MP4-25
Lewis Hamilton (GBR), McLaren Mercedes, MP4-25 is out of the Race
Lewis Hamilton (GBR), McLaren Mercedes, MP4-25 is out of the Race

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Hamilton! - Unregistered

August 01, 2010 10:03 PM

Hamilton is the best driver on the grid. Can make the most of his opportunities unlike many other drivers on the formula 1 grid. Give this man the right car and he would blow everybody else away


August 01, 2010 9:23 PM

martin brundle described lewis as beating the car into submission to get the lap time during qualy, after another strong drive the car submitted today, three weeks to do some 'development' that they understand and an f-duct at spa, even if the car still trails red bull and ferrari hamilton will be good to watch

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