F1 »

Lucky Q1 escape for spinning Hamilton

Lewis Hamilton was one of the first drivers to fall foul of atrocious conditions in Q1, but he was lucky to escape to resume qualifying another day.
Lewis Hamilton could well have been sitting on the sidelines on Saturday evening in the extended hiatus between qualifying sessions, after being one of the first drivers to fall foul of a waterlogged Albert Park circuit in Q1 ahead of the 2013 F1 Australian Grand Prix.

Hamilton spun his Mercedes at the exit of turn 2, which sent the back end of the car around resulting in impact with the tyre barrier. That could have damaged the rear wing of the car and forced him to lose time in the pit lane getting repairs, but instead the driver determined that no serious harm had been done by the light tap and he was able to carry on.

"It was pretty straightforward really, I just lost the back end and was in the wall," explained Hamilton.

The biggest scare for the Briton was when he tried to get back underway. His right side wheels were on the sodden grass verge, and when he tried pulling away the wheels were unable to gain traction and it appeared as though he might be completely stuck in a dangerous spot on the track.

"Fortunately I got going again. I was beached actually, I was stuck and luckily I put it in reverse and reversed half way up the bloody track!" he said. In fact he moved only a few feet in the wrong direction before getting the wheels off the grass and getting back underway.

Hamilton went on to set the tenth fastest time in the session, comfortably putting him through to Q2 - which, because of the rain, will now not be held until Sunday morning at 11am local time (midnight GMT).

His team mate Nico Rosberg topped the times on Saturday with a lap of 1:43.380s, two seconds faster than Hamilton thanks to the rapidly changing conditions and evolving drier line on the Melbourne track.

"It's incredibly tricky," Hamilton said. "Probably one of the slipperiest circuits that I've raced on in the rain, simply because there's a lot of white lines everywhere that are painted black. As soon as you hit those, the car slides and aquaplanes and oversteers. That's why you saw so many people going off."

But now Hamilton can put all that behind him and focus on a new start on Sunday.

"I can dust those kind of things off and keep looking forward to tomorrow," he said, not at all concerned by having qualifying intrude on the build up to the Grand Prix on race day itself.

"I don't think it compromises the race - if anything it's better because you get a bit of a warm-up," he said. "Your body should be more energised and ready for the race, so it should be interesting.

"But I really hope it's a dry day," he added. "Today has been incredibly difficult for everyone!"

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
16.03.2013- Qualifying, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W04 leads Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W04
16.03.2013- Qualifying, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W04 leads Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W04
16.03.2013- Qualifying, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W04
16.03.2013- Qualifying, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W04
Nico Rosberg and Fernando Alonso - Mercedes, McLaren
George Russell, Mercedes junior programme, [Credit: Mercedes]
Valtteri Bottas, Nico Rosberg
Valtteri Bottas - Mercedes AMG Petronas
Valtteri Bottas - Mercedes AMG Petronas
Valtteri Bottas - Mercedes AMG Petronas
Valtteri Bottas - Mercedes AMG Petronas
Ayrton Senna - McLaren. 1993 Donington Park
Nico Hulkenberg - Renault Sport F1
Nigel Mansell - McLaren-Mercedes
Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas
Who will replace Nico Rosberg at Mercedes?
Who will replace Nico Rosberg at Mercedes?
Lewis Hamilton tests the 2017 F1 tyres in Abu Dhabi [credit: Pirelli]

Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.

Dumper - Unregistered

March 16, 2013 11:41 AM

Westy & NIYD: I agree with you both but I'm confused as to the point of the article. Why focus on Hamilton's luck? Massa and Perez were also lucky. Not so poor old Maldonado. So what.


March 16, 2013 3:44 PM

I don't believe there is any problems at Mercedes. Both these guys are great proffessional drivers. Nico has the home advantage. I think it was interesting that the pit wall was sharing Nico's break bias settings with Lewis over the radio. Think they call it "Team Work".

© 1999 - 2017 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.