9 September 2012
Hamilton 'proud', humbled by Monza victory
Lewis Hamilton: Winning at Monza is one of the greatest experiences of my F1 career
Lewis Hamilton has said he is 'extremely proud' and 'humbled' to have won the 2012 F1 Italian Grand Prix.
Hamilton put in a brilliant drive and led pretty much from lights-to-flag, in the processing breaking his duck at Monza and very much kick starting his championship assault, as he now moves up to second in the Drivers' Championship, and will go to Singapore in two weeks time trailing Fernando Alonso by 37 points.
It was a relatively easy win for the McLaren driver, however, and while he did have to up his pace near the end, he always had a good lead over Sergio Perez, who eventually took the runners-up spot, 4.3 seconds back.
“Winning at Monza is one of the greatest experiences of my F1 career,” Hamilton said. “I absolutely love this place: I've been coming to Italy to race since I was 13 years old and I just love the culture, the food and the people. Since I started in Formula 1, Monza has been one of the races I always wanted to win at – it's such an incredible, historic circuit and all the great racing drivers have won here. To finally put my name on that list makes me feel extremely proud, but also very humble.
“Our car has been fantastic all weekend and it was nice to have a relaxed grand prix with no troubles. I was out on my own for most of the race and just tried to manage the gap behind me."
“I was cruising at the end, but, once I heard that Sergio [Perez] had got past Fernando [Alonso], I had to push a little to keep the cushion over second place,” he conceded.
Asked about his championship bid now, Hamilton added that his victory in Italy is 'just one step' on the road to a possible second title to add to the one he took back in 2008.
“This championship is proving to be so unpredictable – and I'm so grateful that we've got a good car and that we're in the fight,” he continued.
“We've got seven more races on the calendar. We should enjoy today, but this victory is just one step. Tomorrow, we'll start all over again, for Singapore,” he concluded.
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