Martin Whitmarsh is in fighting mood ahead of this weekend's Brazilian Grand Prix at Interlagos – the penultimate round on the F1 2010 World Championship calendar, and one that could just rule McLaren-Mercedes out of the title race – as he insists the team is 'ready for battle' and will not give up until 'the odds are no longer possible'.
Very much F1's third force behind Red Bull Racing and Ferrari in recent outings, McLaren has largely hung on in there through opportunism, punching above its weight and taking advantage of its two arch-rivals' errors.
Whilst Jenson Button's bid for glory now looks optimistic to say the least – at 42 points shy of the top of the drivers' table with only 50 remaining to play for in Brazil and Abu Dhabi – team-mate Lewis Hamilton is certainly still in contention at 21 adrift, and the Woking-based outfit itself is only 27 markers off Red Bull in the constructors' standings. Nothing is over yet, urges team principal Whitmarsh.
“We're now reaching the critical climax of this year's world championship,” the Englishman acknowledged. “With the two final races spread just one week apart, and five drivers still in the hunt for overall honours, it's a fascinating and thrilling prospect for our sport.
“If F1 has taught us competitors one thing over the past couple of years, it's to never give up hope until the odds are no longer possible, and that the most unexpected outcome can become a very real and viable possibility sooner than you can readily imagine.
“With that in mind, we go to Brazil, and then on to Abu Dhabi, still determined to wrest both world championships. Lewis is well-placed in the drivers' championship, and while Jenson lies 42 points adrift, he has vowed to fight on. As the reigning world champion, and a great driver, he knows better than most that you can't lift the title without being a resolute fighter. That's exactly why we hired him, and we'll be supporting him fully this weekend.
“As for the constructors' championship, we're only 27 points off the top spot – a very slender margin, and one that both Jenson and Lewis are convinced we can bridge by the time the chequered flag falls in Abu Dhabi. We're ready for battle and working harder than ever to win both world championships.”