Lewis Hamilton was left to rue bad luck in the German Grand Prix after a second lap puncture ended his hopes of a strong result at Hockenheim.

The McLaren driver had started the race from seventh on the grid but was forced to pit on the second lap after picking up a puncture on debris from the front wing of Felipe Massa's Ferrari.

Although he was able to resume at the back of the field, the damage to the rear of his McLaren ultimately forced the Briton to retire and Hamilton admitted he was frustrated at being the man to be caught out by the debris.

"My second-lap puncture was incredibly unfortunate," he said. "There was debris scattered across the full width of the track and I didn't have any option other than to drive straight through it. What's more frustrating is that, at the time, I was the eighth car through - so to be the one to get the puncture is just cruel luck.

"It was immediately clear that my car didn't feel the same after the puncture. However, after a few laps, I was able to adapt my driving style, and the car had good pace during the middle stint. However, with the damage to the rear, I think we were lucky to get that far, to be honest.

"At least I was able to have some fun out on track - my pace was good enough to be able to match the leaders during the middle stint. And that's encouraging for me, because we know our car's been genuinely quick this weekend. A big thank-you to everyone back at the factory for all their efforts to get a lot of new parts onto the car this weekend - every little bit helps, and we know there's even more in the pipeline.

"We'll put that pace in our pockets and take it to Hungary next weekend. I'm back in the car in five days' time - and that's the best possible news for me after a day like today."

Team boss Martin Whitmarsh shared in Hamilton's disappointment, which came in his 100th F1 appearance.

"Lewis was incredibly unfortunate to be a victim of the turn one debris - there wasn't anything he could have done to avoid it," he said. "Unfortunately, the puncture damaged the rear of his car, prompting us to monitor the data carefully to track all the vital signs. He had a good push in the middle of the race, but the car got worse and worse so it wasn't safe or sensible to keep him out there. It's a terribly disappointing conclusion to his 100th grand prix."


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