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Hamilton: Red Bull will be hard to beat now

Lewis Hamilton admitted that Japan could be the crucial turning point in the 2012 championship, after Sebastian Vettel dominated the weekend's Grand Prix.
The sight of Sebastian Vettel streaking off to a dominant race win at Suzuka in the 2012 F1 Japanese Grand Prix seemed to bring home to Lewis Hamilton just how much of an outside bet he now is for the championship.

"The Red Bulls are going to be hard to beat," he admitted after finishing in fifth place in Japan. "I'm quite a realistic person so I know my situation, but I'll never give up. I'll keep pushing."

Hamilton insisted that he was actually "Quite happy with my race to be honest," after being fortunate to stay out of trouble at the start. He was also able to look after his tyres particularly well - to the point where he really didn't want to come into the pits when the team called him.

"The lap that I came in I was half a second up and I said to the team, 'My tyres are fine, my tyres are fine, I want to continue' - but they wanted to bring me in," recalled Hamilton of his second stop of the race. "It was obviously the right call. We had a good battle with Kimi in the first corner. The guys did a fantastic job in the pit stops."

"Lewis's second stop was excellent," agreed McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh. "A superb strategy call backed by super-slick work by our pit crew – and as a result Lewis emerged from the pitlane more or less alongside Kimi, edged ahead of him through turn 1, then skilfully held him at bay and collected 10 valuable points for fifth place as a result."

Hamilton was still puzzled at why the car's performance varied so much during the race, however.

"I had this amazing understeer through qualifying and then today was exactly the same,' he said. "That's why I was falling back from the group, I wasn't quick enough

"Then all of a sudden I had this thud on the rear, lap 20 something, and all of a sudden the car started turning and then after that I was able to push. I don't know why that was and we have to analyse and find out why

"From that moment on, it felt really good," he added. "But it was too late to have much of an effect on the result."

That left him behind his team mate Jenson Button, although at least between them the duo were able to contribute to the McLaren effort in the constructors championship.

“Congratulations to Jenson," said Hamilton. "He drove well all weekend, and, between us, we got some decent points for the team today."




Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
07.10.2012- Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-27
05.10.2012- Free Practice 2, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-27
06.10.2012- Qualifying, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-27
07.10.2012- Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-27 leads Sergio Perez (MEX) Sauber F1 Team C31
Toshio Suzuki at the Japanese Grand Prix, 24/10/1993
07.09.2014 - Race, 1st position Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05, 2nd position  Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 and 3rd position Felipe Massa (BRA) Williams F1 Team FW36
07.09.2014 - Race, 1st position Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05, 2nd position  Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 and 3rd position Felipe Massa (BRA) Williams F1 Team FW36
07.09.2014 - Race, 1st position Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05, 2nd position  Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 and 3rd position Felipe Massa (BRA) Williams F1 Team FW36
07.09.2014 - Race, 1st position Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05, 2nd position  Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 and 3rd position Felipe Massa (BRA) Williams F1 Team FW36
07.09.2014 - Race, Jenson Button (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-29
07.09.2014 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05
07.09.2014 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05
07.09.2014 - Race, 1st position Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05, 2nd position  Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 and 3rd position Felipe Massa (BRA) Williams F1 Team FW36
07.09.2014 - Race, 1st position Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05, 2nd position Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 and 3rd position Felipe Massa (BRA) Williams F1 Team FW36
07.09.2014 - Race, 1st position Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05, 2nd position Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 and 3rd position Felipe Massa (BRA) Williams F1 Team FW36
07.09.2014 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05
07.09.2014 - Race, Felipe Massa (BRA) Williams F1 Team FW36 and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05
07.09.2014 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 and Bernie Ecclestone (GBR), President and CEO of FOM

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arcuid

October 07, 2012 5:56 PM

Decent drive and managed to pick up points so it wasn't that bad of a day for Lewis and a bit of a scuffle with Kimi. Hairy moment but a gusty move. Fair play to both drivers for not having a collision.

rob01

October 07, 2012 2:05 PM

Red Bull is the best team on the grid. And have been for sometime now. The FIA specifically tried to stop the Bulls this year with all sorts of rule changes. But the team has overcome every road block. I knew myself that Alonso had lucked into the championship lead early on with Ferrari's unbeatable structure.(joke) And the tell tale signs of Ferrari choking just like they did last time to Vettel and Red Bull have come to surface. Vettel will never switch to Ferrari. There not Vettel material.



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