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Maldonado: Hamilton incident was 'race contact'

Pastor Maldonado appears ready to 'forgive and forget' following his Lewis Hamilton-inspired retirement in Monaco.
Pastor Maldonado has confirmed that has no intention of labelling the nudge from Lewis Hamilton that sent him into the Ste Devote barriers as anything other than a racing incident, despite his retirement robbing the struggling Williams team of a handsome points payout.

Although veteran team-mate Rubens Barrichello claimed the team's first scoring finish of the season in ninth, it could have been so much better had Maldonado been allowed to run unhindered to what was fifth place at the time of his clash with Hamilton. The Briton had already made contact with Ferrari's Felipe Massa at the Loews hairpin - leading to Massa breaking his wing on Mark Webber's car and eventually retiring after hitting the barrier in the tunnel - but later turned on both his 'victims', branding their driving as 'ridiculous'.

Hamilton has since apologised, both to Massa and Maldonado - who he claimed were 'fantastic drivers' - and for his entire post-race rant, and, while Massa initially claimed that the Briton needed to punished heavily, Maldonado appeared to be more conciliatory.

"Finally I was doing a really good race," he sighed, looking back at another strong Monaco weekend, "In Monaco, I think I show our performance and I hope it was so great because of the pace.

"The car improved and I am getting better and better with the car. I am more confident, and the pace was so good during the race. The team did a very good job on the strategy, everything was running good but, at the end, I think, with Lewis, it was race contact, nothing more."

Maldonado has developed an affinity with Monaco above and beyond many of his more seasoned rivals, having won there in both World Series and GP2, and hopes that he can carry some of the attributes he believes make him successful in the Principality to this weekend's Canadian GP in Montreal.

"I think Monaco is a very difficult circuit, especially mentally, during the race," he commented, "You must take some risks, but I know very well the track. I know where to put the car and, for me, maybe it is a bit easier than the other circuits. I really enjoy driving there. I enjoy every single corner, every lap, in Monaco and the atmosphere is fantastic.

"It is my first time here [in Montreal], but the track seems amazing. Let's see what we can do. For sure, at the beginning, it will be a bit difficult for me. I need to learn the track, and we have a new aero package, so I need to understand the new parts on the car. It is going to be a difficult day, but it is my job and I will do my best and let's see what we can do."



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
29.05.2011- Race, Pastor Maldonado (VEN), Williams FW33
28.05.2011- Saturday Practice, Pastor Maldonado (VEN), Williams FW33
10.06.2011- Friday Practice 1, Pastor Maldonado (VEN), Williams FW33
28.05.2011- Saturday Practice, Pastor Maldonado (VEN), Williams FW33
21.05.2011- Qualifying, Pastor Maldonado (VEN), Williams FW33
Lewis Hamilton 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
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

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