Lewis Hamilton says he will not start the United States Grand Prix with a specific target of wrapping up the 2015 Formula 1 World Championship title early, insisting he won't take risks to beat Nico Rosberg.
On a weekend blighted by torrid weather conditions, Hamilton went second in a truncated qualifying at a sodden Circuit of the Americas, the champion-elect being beaten to pole position by Mercedes team-mate Rosberg after the session was called off ahead of Q3.
As it stands, Hamilton leads Sebastian Vettel by 66 points and Rosberg by 73 points, with the Englishman needing to swell his margin over both to 75 points to seal the title with three races to go.
However, with rain still expected to create challenges for the drivers in the race, Hamilton says he will be taking a 'sensible' approach, rather than strive to get the job done early.
“Qualifying is just the beginning the race is going to be a long battle today with those conditions. I think today it is still important to be sensible, there is no need to take any particular risks. There are four races, so it is not do or die, so to speak.”
Reflecting on qualifying itself, though Hamilton was one of several drivers to suffer spins at turn ten, he was disappointed the cancellation of Q3 robbed him of the chance to take pole position.
“It was generally a good qualifying, it was lots of fun for all of us. A bit of an anti-climax at the end, I was looking forward to going out. We probably could have gone out and cleaned the track ourselves if all the cars are out.”
Anyway, happy with the one-two for the team and good the fans to be able to see the cars run, seemed like there was a good crowd there today so hope the weather backs off today for the race.”