McLaren boss Martin Whitmarsh has reiterated that the team is fully behind Lewis Hamilton's bid for the F1 title, despite his decision to leave the team at the end of the year.

Hamilton will switch to Mercedes when his current deal expires, ending a relationship with McLaren that has been in place since he was just 13-years-old.

The announcement that he was to leave comes with Hamilton being the better placed of the two McLaren drivers in the title standings and Whitmarsh again insisted that the team would keep backing its man despite his decision.

"Yes I think very much so," he told Sky Sports when quizzed about the 27-year-old retaining the backing of his team.

"We have a competitive car at the minute and we have six races left. We can win all of those six races and in my view we can win the Championship. So starting next week in Japan we will be focusing on that.

"Lewis is a great racing driver and massively competitive. He knows there are races to win and races he wants to win himself. So we will be working hard to do that."

Hamilton will be making the move to Mercedes at a time when McLaren has been designing its 2013 car based on him being at the wheel, with Whitmarsh saying he wasn't concerned that confidential information would follow the 2008 champion from Woking to Brackley.

"I know Lewis well," he said. "I trust and respect him and he trusts and respects the team, that is not something that goes through my mind at all."


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