McLaren Preview Abu Dhabi Grand Prix 2011

November 5, 2011

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2011 ABU DHABI GRAND PRIX PREVIEW

 

Lewis Hamilton

“I have some fantastic memories of the Yas Marina Circuit. I started from pole position there in 2009, and I led the race until I was forced to stop because of a brake issue. Last year, I finished second and set the fastest lap, so we head there looking to convert all that potential into a race win.

“I think we’ve got every reason to be confident for Abu Dhabi. This circuit should really suit the characteristics of our car – we should be able to capitalise on the layout to maximise the benefit of DRS and KERS, both of which are very strong on our car.

“Red Bull and Sebastian [Vettel] may have clinched both championships, but I’m still determined to end the season on a winning high. I’ve won two grands prix this year, and I’d love to double that by the end of the year! It would also be a great reward for everybody at Vodafone McLaren Mercedes.”

Jenson Button

“Abu Dhabi has special memories for me because it was my first race after I’d won the world championship in 2009, so it made racing that weekend a really fun and enjoyable experience – I remember I had a fantastic battle with Mark [Webber] and finished third.

“The Yas Marina circuit looks and feels spectacular and futuristic: it’s a unique place – the way the circuit changes from dusk to darkness is incredible, and must be an amazing experience for the spectators. The way it’s built, the grandstands are almost on top the action so everyone gets a great view.

“It’s usually been quite difficult to overtake here, especially last year, but I think that DRS will change all that. The back straight is one of the longest in Formula 1 so I expect to see a lot of action there. It would be great to see the new rules turn this circuit into a place where overtaking is more common and more exciting.

“Our car should suit this circuit so I’m very optimistic. We saw at the last grand prix that even though we didn’t have the ultimate speed to catch and pass Sebastian, we made him work hard for the win. Tactically, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes ran a first-class race: I got all the right calls from the pit wall and the pit crew did a fantastic job. The championship may not be at stake any more but we’re still aiming to win races and put on a tremendous show.”

Martin Whitmarsh

Team principal, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes

“The Indian Grand Prix two weeks ago was a unique achievement for Formula 1, and next weekend’s race in Abu Dhabi will be another pinnacle for the sport at probably the most futuristic and impressive circuit on the calendar.

“Jenson was quick and incredibly consistent in India, putting us in a position where we could be a little bit adventurous with the tyre strategy and put the leader under greater pressure. I know Lewis was disappointed with the outcome of his own race but that will not affect his preparations for the next challenge. He has an extremely impressive track record in Abu Dhabi, starting from pole position in 2009 and setting the fastest lap on his way to the podium in 2010, so I’m very confident that he’ll shine this weekend.

“At Vodafone McLaren Mercedes we approach every grand prix with one aim: to win it. So while we can never be entirely happy with finishing second, as we did in India, we can be satisfied that we maximised the technical package we had and look at ways to go one better for the next race.

“Even though we’ve secured second place in the constructors’ championship, and Jenson has a very healthy margin in second place in the drivers’ championship, the season isn’t over for us by any means. We’re continuing to bring new developments to our car and we’ll be fighting every bit as hard as we did at the first race in Australia back in March.”

Will There Be a New Lewis Hamilton in 2012?

November 3, 2011

Lewis Hamilton

Lewis Hamilton was given a three-place grid penalty at the Indian Grand Prix for speeding past a yellow flag during free practice and he had yet another coming together with Felipe Massa during the race. His season has been plagued with collisions, mainly with Massa but also Kamui Kobayashi and even his team mate, Jenson Button.

Bernie Ecclestone commented: “In life you go through ups and downs, and I think he is just going through a bit of a rough period generally in his life. When life is easy you get lucky and everything goes well. When things start going wrong they start piling up and going more wrong. He will get out of it. I spoke to him here in India. He is great. He will be okay.” Regarding his collisions with Felipe Massa he said: “It is not intentional, is it? These things happen. It is just really strange that it always happens between those two.”

Martin Whitmarsh, McLaren’s Team Principal, believes that Lewis Hamilton has brought much of the pressure on himself. “If you’re honest, the first driver you want to beat is your team-mate. We don’t hide from that and nor does Lewis or Jenson. They are there to beat each other and Jenson’s been on a run.

“Lewis is the great exciting driver he is but he’ll not like being beaten by anyone, least of all by Jenson. Even though outside the car they have a fantastic relationship but Lewis will not like being beaten by his team-mate. I don’t want him to enjoy being beaten by his team-mate. I want him to try and beat Jenson just as I want Jenson to beat Lewis.”

Lewis’s father, his ex-manager, supported his son commenting: “He’s turned a corner in everything he’s done, his lifestyle and his love of motorsport. You’ve not seen Lewis Hamilton yet, you’ve seen a young Lewis Hamilton. Now a new Lewis Hamilton is coming.

“There’s only so much that one person can take. Lewis is an extremely talented individual and I tell you what, most of us would not have been able to come back from what he has had to face this year. I think in Korea, he showed just how much of a champion he is, not just as a racing driver but as an individual.

“Let’s face it, he’s had a tough year, he’s faced a lot of criticism and yet still he comes back fighting and can produce results that he did last week. He’s an incredible man and an inspiration to so many people.”

McLaren Race Report Indian Grand Prix 2011

October 30, 2011

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2011 INDIAN GRAND PRIX

 

“A very good result – and second place secured in the Constructors’ World Championship”

 

Buddh International Circuit, Sunday October 30

JENSON BUTTON

MP4-26A-01

Started:            4th

Finished:          2nd

Fastest lap:      1m27.967s (+0.718s, 4th)

Pitstops:          Two: laps 18 and 46 (Op-Op-Pr)

2011 points:     240 (2nd)

“In terms of team effort, we did everything right today – our car just wasn’t quite quick enough to actually win.

“I got a good start, made up places on the first lap and then settled down to keep Mark [Webber] behind me for five or six laps. Eventually, I think we ‘broke’ his rear tyres, which enabled me to establish a gap. Then I could set about Seb [Vettel] – but it was very difficult to close him down.

“At the final stop, it was a risk going to the harder tyre earlier than Seb, but we had to give it a go and it worked pretty well as I was able to close him down by a further three seconds. My car felt really good: before Seb could find his rhythm on the Prime, I was able to get the gap down to 2.8 seconds, but it wasn’t quite enough.

“Still, this was a very good result for us – and I think we delivered the maximum possible. I loved the whole experience this weekend. And I think every driver will be excited about coming back here because it’s such a phenomenal circuit; fast and flowing with a bit of everything. It gets a big tick from me.

“The Indian people have really welcomed us to their country; I’ve never seen so many people smiling before. And the crowd has been wonderful. I hope that Formula 1 grows in India in the future and that we get an even bigger crowd here next year.”

 

LEWIS HAMILTON

MP4-26A-03

Started:            5th

Finished:          7th

Fastest lap:      1m28.721s (+1.472s, 9th)

Pitstops:          Three: laps 16, 24 and 45 (Op-Op-Op & front wing- Pr)

2011 points:     202 (5th)

 

“The contact with Felipe [Massa] was just one of those things. I really didn’t feel like I was at fault – it was a racing incident.

“On the grid, just before the one minute’s silence, he and I were standing next to each other and I put my arm around him and told him: ‘Have a great race today.’ I’ve still got great respect for him.

“During the race, it felt like there was a vibration in the car through the right-handers: it felt like the floor was scraping on the ground, in fact. I was pushing as hard as I could, but couldn’t find the performance, so we’ll have to look into that.

“It’s been an eventful year, but there are more races ahead and I’ll try to score as many world championship points as possible in both of them. Jenson did a great job today, so clearly we were quick enough. I just need to try to pick up on that for the next race.”

MARTIN WHITMARSH

Team principal, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes

“Jenson made a great start and then drove a brilliant first few corners, working his way from fourth on the grid to second by the end of the first lap.

“He followed that with a truly excellent race-long performance, managing tyre wear where necessary yet still managing to keep up impressive race pace throughout. He didn’t ever have quite enough race pace to mount a concerted attack on Seb, but he got the maximum out of his car and beat everyone else fair and square.

“Lewis had a frustrating afternoon, but recovered well from his coming-together with Felipe to score a very useful half-dozen world championship points. We don’t yet know whether contact with the Ferrari caused damage to Lewis’s car – other than to the nosecone, obviously, which we changed in the pits – but, as I say, as a result of the 24 world championship points that he and Jenson notched up today, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes has now secured second place in the 2011 Constructors’ World Championship. It’s always our aim to go one better than that – to win – and second isn’t good enough – but we’re pleased to have consolidated that position nonetheless.

“Last but far from least, I want to say that I thought the 2011 Indian Grand Prix was a fantastic success: a glittering spectacle and a marvellous addition to the international sporting calendar. Next, we go to Abu Dhabi, and then to Brazil, and we at Vodafone McLaren Mercedes will be doing our utmost to win both those grands prix.”

McLaren Qualifying Indian Grand Prix 2011

October 29, 2011

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2011 INDIAN GRAND PRIX – QUALIFYING

 

“We’ve got good pace, but it’s going to be a long race”

 

Buddh International Circuit, Saturday October 29

 

JENSON BUTTON

MP4-26A-01

P3

2nd 1m25.191s (0.367s) 15 laps

Qualifying

Q1 3rd                           1m26.225s (on Options)

Q2 5th                           1m25.299s (on Options)

Q3 5th overall*              1m24.950s (on Options)

* will start fourth

“The car felt great this morning but I couldn’t find any grip this afternoon, particularly on the Prime tyre. So we need to work out why we can’t find that balance because I want to try to improve things for tomorrow.

“I struggled with traffic all afternoon – it was difficult to find a clear lap, and, when I did, I’d taken too much out of my tyres already. On my final run, I saw Felipe [Massa] heading into the gravel as I came up to him. I definitely would have been quicker on that run, but I got into the yellow flag zone, saw his car, spotted the smoke and backed out of it a little bit. I definitely lost time in the sector – the data showed that I was 14km/h down in fact.

“I hope I can take the car I had yesterday, as opposed to the car I had this afternoon, into the race. It felt stronger on high-fuel during Friday running, so hopefully we can find that again tomorrow.”

 

LEWIS HAMILTON

MP4-26A-03

P3

2nd 1m25.288s (+0.464s) 16 laps

Qualifying

Q1 8th                           1m26.563s (on Primes)

Q2 2nd                           1m25.019s (on Options)

Q3 2nd overall*              1m24.474s (on Options)

* will start fifth following three-place grid penalty

 

“To be able to split the Red Bulls on qualifying pace is something that everybody in the team should feel proud about. In fact, I’ve been really happy with my qualifying performance throughout the whole year – it’s been getting more and more consistent. On my last run, I was only a tenth down going into the penultimate corner, but I chose to abort the lap and save the tyres for tomorrow as it’s going to be a long race.

“It’s a little bit unfortunate to have a grid penalty, but that’s life. I think we’ve got good pace, but it’s going to be a long race. Still, with the long, wide straights and two DRS zones, overtaking should be easier here than it is at some of the other circuits, so I’m optimistic about what we can do around here tomorrow.

“I also think it’s cool that you throw up a bit of dust when you go off-line – that’s how racing should be: there should be grass and dirt when you go off the track.

“Finally, I want to say a big thank-you to the organisers. This circuit is smooth, fast and flowing. It’s beautiful, in fact; the facilities are fantastic and the people have been extremely welcoming. This is one of the best circuits in the world and it’s definitely a race people should come to visit.”

MARTIN WHITMARSH

Team principal, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes

“Lewis drove very well in qualifying this afternoon, his best lap-time eclipsed by only that of Seb [Vettel], but he won’t start tomorrow’s race from the front row owing to the three-grid-position penalty he incurred yesterday morning.

“Jenson’s efforts were frustrated in the last moments of this afternoon’s qualifying session by yellow flags deployed as a result of Felipe’s accident, causing him to lift during what would otherwise have been a pretty quick lap.

“But this circuit is a great racetrack, our drivers are brilliant racers, and I’m sure that both of them will be aiming to score very heavily tomorrow. As a result, I expect the first ever Indian Grand Prix to be a fabulous race.”

McLaren 1st and 2nd Practice Indian Grand Prix 2011

October 29, 2011

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2011 INDIAN GRAND PRIX – FREE PRACTICE

 

We’re hopefully going to be fighting for the win on Sunday”

Buddh International Circuit, Friday October 28

LEWIS HAMILTON

MP4-26A-03

P1 programme             22 laps                         1m26.836s                    1st

P2 programme                                     26 laps                         1m26.454s (0.748s)       4th

“The track is fantastic – the organisers here in India have done a great job. It’s very fast and flowing, the grip-level is fantastic, the run-off areas seem to be good, and the kerbs are probably the best of any circuit we visit: nice rumble-strips that you can drive on. Like any brand-new circuit, it’s been gripping-up throughout the day.

“We looked quick this morning. This afternoon, however, I had a problem with the driveshaft – it felt like it was causing some wear and tear so it prompted me to end the session a little early. We’ll fit a new gearbox for tomorrow, so the car will hopefully start behaving a bit better. That should make things closer at the front.

“Sunday’s race will be a long one. Nevertheless, there will be opportunities to overtake: it’s a high-downforce circuit and, although it’ll be very hard to follow other cars closely, the double-DRS zone should make it a bit easier. We’ll get a clearer idea tomorrow of just how quick we really are.”

JENSON BUTTON

MP4-26A-01

P1 programme                                     23 laps                         1m28.394s (+1.558s)     4th

P2 programme                                     28 laps                         1m26.714s (+1.008s)     6th

“I really like this circuit. It’s great fun to drive. There are some tough corners, like Turns Three and Five, but there’s also a lot of high-speed stuff and it feels a lot faster than we initially thought it would.

“What’s also been quite a surprise is the amount of grip out there, particularly in the faster corners where the downforce is really working for you. And, because the high-speed corners are pretty smooth, you can really carry a lot of speed through them.

“It’s difficult to get the tyres up to their optimal working temperature range, but, once they’re in the operating window, the high-speed grip is phenomenal. From Turn Five onwards, the track is actually very quick.

“We’ll have a lot of fun this weekend and we’re hopefully going to be fighting for the win on Sunday.”

MARTIN WHITMARSH

Team principal, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes

“First of all, I want to congratulate the promoters here in Delhi for having created a truly excellent circuit. The drivers love it, and the teams’ facilities are very good too. And of course India, whose population is second in magnitude only to that of China, is a hugely important new addition to the Formula 1 calendar.

“As is often the case when the Formula 1 circus travels to a brand-new circuit, today was a day of experimentation. As it happened, the circuit offered up more grip than we’d anticipated, which required a set-up review early on.

“I think we’ve got a little more work to do in order to unlock our latent first-lap performance, but Jenson in particular completed an extremely encouraging long run. By contrast, Lewis’s long run was interrupted by a driveshaft issue, which unfortunately prevented him from being able to complete it.

“Now, we’ll analyse our findings from today, and tomorrow we intend to convert that analysis in to a strong qualifying performance.”

Lewis Hamilton Previews Indian Grand Prix 2011

October 21, 2011

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2011 INDIAN GRAND PRIX PREVIEW

 

Lewis Hamilton

Have you been to India before?

“Yeah, I’ve been a few times before – we’ve done a few Vodafone promotional days there. The last time was just crazy – just after Singapore, we did a demo run in Bangalore and were expecting 5,000 people to turn up. On the day, there were around 40,000 fans – it was just incredible.”

Do you think India is looking forward to Formula 1?

“You can’t believe how many people are aware of Formula 1 and how many are looking forward to the race next week. There’s already a great deal of knowledge about the sport – I think it’s going to be a big deal.

“India’s a sport-mad nation – mostly, it’s about cricket, which is understandable because they’re a very successful cricketing country, but I really think the people of India are going to take Formula 1 to their hearts. The reception we’ve had in the last few years has been greater than I could ever have predicted and I think the whole country is ready for something new and something exciting.

“I really hope India will get turned on to Formula 1 in a big way – it would be amazing to have an entire continent supporting you – and I really hope we can put on a fantastic race!”

Do you think Vodafone McLaren Mercedes will be competitive next weekend?

“It’s too early to say, but I think we’re set to be competitive at all of the final three races. We were quick at Singapore, Japan and Korea – and I think the pattern at the front has sort of settled down now as we reach the end of the season. I think we have a car that can be quick anywhere, so I’d like to think we’d be in the hunt again next weekend.”

Martin Whitmarsh Previews Indian Grand Prix 2011

October 21, 2011

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Martin Whitmarsh

Team principal, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes

How important is the Indian Grand Prix for the sport of Formula 1?

“Certainly, every new venue we visit is important to the sport of Formula 1 and to our partners, many of whom have a considerable presence in India, and who are delighted by the prospect of the inaugural Indian Grand Prix.

“I think it’s important that the world championship is fully represented on the world’s stage – and a grand prix in India is certainly a very positive step. For Formula 1, the most important thing is to educate, nurture and cultivate our audience – I firmly believe that Formula 1 is the greatest sport in the world and I want us to spread that word across the whole Indian subcontinent.

“Secondly, we want to take Formula 1 to the people. I know that our partners such as Vodafone are already very actively engaged in this activity in India, but I think we’ve done the right thing by establishing the circuit close to New Delhi. Initial impressions suggest the track will be a good one, with particular regard paid to close and exciting racing. And I’m also told that the prospect of the grand prix is causing a great deal of excitement within the city and the country as a whole.

“So I think we’re doing everything right – and I sincerely hope we can walk away on Sunday evening having done a great job for the country and for Formula 1.”

What is the atmosphere like within the team now that both world championships have been settled?

“There’s not been a great distinction: we go racing to win, and, as I’ve said before, that’s the firm intention we take with us to all remaining races on the calendar. We’ve made some good progress recently with the 2011 car and we feel we have a car that can challenge for victory at all the remaining grands prix.

“While we’re winding down the development of the 26 and ramping up development of MP4-27, we still have a few more opportunities to track-test components and developments that can be carried over to next year.

“And we take plenty of positives away from the last two races: I think Jenson’s win in Japan and Lewis’s drive in Korea were two of the best performances of their respective careers. Both drivers are motivated to win and want to lead the team through these final few races and into the winter. There’s a lot of positive energy back at MTC, and you’re seeing that at the racetrack, too.”

McLaren Race Report Korean Grand Prix 2011

October 16, 2011

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2011 KOREAN GRAND PRIX

 

“Two brilliant racing drivers – who never give up”

 

Korea International Circuit, Sunday October 16

LEWIS HAMILTON

MP4-26A-03

Started:            1st

Finished:          2nd

Fastest lap:      1m40.459s (+0.689s, 3rd)

Pitstops:          Two: laps 15 and 33 (Op-Op- Pr)

2011 points:     196 (5th)

 

“This was one of my strongest races of the season. There was so much pressure from Mark [Webber] behind and it would have been so easy to make a mistake, lock up or go wide – but I’m really satisfied that I didn’t do so once. I believe that withstanding pressure is the mark of a world champion, and I think I showed that in today’s race.

“Our car started off reasonably well, but the front-end dropped away through the race. By the end, all the switches in the cockpit that could help me were adjusted to the maximum! The differential and front wing were at the maximum possible, and there was still nothing I could do.

“I was driving into corners with almost maximum lock and the car still wasn’t turning – so I couldn’t carry the speed through the corners, and that’s how Mark was able to catch me. It was only after the race that I discovered we had an issue with debris lodged in the front wing, and that’s probably what caused the understeer.

“This was a good, strong result for the team. The guys didn’t put a foot wrong all weekend, so we should be proud of today’s result – but, man, it was hard!

“I really hope we can carry our continued momentum through the next three races. It feels good to be back.”

JENSON BUTTON

MP4-26A-01

Started:            3rd

Finished:          4th

Fastest lap:      1m40.709s (+1.104s, 7th)

Pitstops:          Two: laps 13 and 34 (Op-Op-Pr)

2011 points:     222 (2nd)

“I don’t think I could have done much more than fourth today. I struggled to get rid of my understeer throughout the whole race, so fourth was a fair reflection of what the car was capable of today.

“On the first lap, I braked into Turn Three, but Felipe [Massa] went inside me and I got stuck on the outside and ended up losing quite a few places. At the end of the first lap, I was sixth, but I don’t think that poor first lap would have changed my result.

“Throughout the race, I didn’t have any front-end grip. I couldn’t get into the DRS zone either, so it was always tricky to try and close down the car in front when I lacked that straight-line advantage.

“I was passed by Nico [Rosberg] after my first pitstop when he ended up out-braking himself at the pit exit. The exit here is a bit unusual: if you leave the pits behind another car, then you’re probably going to be able to get ahead, because you get the benefit of the DRS into Turn Three. But Nico locked up out of the pits and ran wide, so I passed him, meaning he crossed the DRS line behind me and was able to use it to get past on the straight.

“I was able to nip back past pretty quickly and was able to close down on the battle for second between Lewis and Mark. But, towards the end of each stint, the front-end would drop away: I just couldn’t get close enough in the last sector. I added more front-end at the stops, but I had lots of understeer so I couldn’t get close enough to Mark [Webber] to use DRS. I think I only used DRS once in the entire race.

“Still, if this was a bad day, it wasn’t so bad!”

MARTIN WHITMARSH

Team principal, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes

“I think Lewis’ drive today was utterly inspirational. He may be downplaying it, because he’s a perfectionist and he wanted to win, but to withstand such enormous pressure, for lap after lap, from a faster car, was a drive absolutely worthy of the great champions.

“His finishing position may only go down in the history books as another second place, but, make no mistake, this was a fantastic drive; beautifully assured and perfectly judged.

“To cap it all, the data showed that he was losing a significant amount of downforce from his front wing. After the race, we inspected Lewis’s front-wing and discovered that the left-hand slot-gap had become filled with congealed tyre rubber, doubtless a result of the marbles on the track.

“As a result, he was suffering with masses of understeer, which further hurts the tyres. In the circumstances, his was an absolutely fantastic drive because it would have been all too easy to have gone backwards when faced with such massive, and constant, pressure.

“Equally, Jenson posted another brilliant, measured drive. On Jenson’s car, too, we discovered after the race that he was also hurting from damage to his car – caused by a rock hitting the front wing. The resulting understeer doubtless also impaired Jenson’s ability to close down Mark in the track’s final sector, and therefore meant he was unable to mount a sustained attack in the DRS zone and secure third.

“Nevertheless, today showed that we have a very good racing car. But, more importantly, it showed that we have two brilliant racing drivers, who will fight from the start of the race to the end and who will never give up.

“Their spirited drives today are a just reward for the whole Vodafone McLaren Mercedes team, who have spent the last fortnight away from their homes, families and friends. While we must all acknowledge the great achievement of Red Bull Racing in securing the constructors’ championship today, I also want to pay tribute to the efforts and sacrifices made by our whole team over these past two weeks. They enabled us to score 65 world championship points in the last two races – a total that now consolidates our position in the constructors’ championship. So, after two fantastic races in Japan and Korea, I want to say a heartfelt ‘thank-you’ to the whole team. There are three races remaining in 2011 – and I know I speak for everyone when I say we want to win all three.”

Ferrari Drivers’ Report Japanese Grand Prix 2011

October 11, 2011

Microsoft Word - CARTA_INTESTATA_F1_2011.doc

Fernando Alonso: “Congratulations to Sebastian! Winning two world titles at his age, in a season in which he has done it all – in qualifying, the races and every other way, so perfectly, is amazing and it is well deserved.

“For our part, we can do no more than try and do our utmost to try and beat him next year. Today, we did our best and we came close to winning the race. We know that in qualifying we are behind the Red Bulls and McLarens, but in the race, when there are variables like tyre degradation, then we can exploit some opportunities. Here, the others were very strong for the first five or six laps and then we closed up to them a lot.

“This podium is a great motivation for the final four races of the season. It was a fun race, in which the strategy was very important. Unlike recent races, today we had a pace that was good enough to fight for the win. We will try again in Korea, where we can go with our heads held high: we will try and win, or at least get on the podium again.”

Felipe Massa: “Once again I finish a race with a very bitter taste in my mouth. Today, our pace was good enough to finish on the podium, as Fernando demonstrated, but instead I am here commenting on a seventh place. It’s a real shame.

“The contact with Hamilton? My car was definitely damaged by it: when I looked at it after the race, I saw there was a bit of the front wing endplate missing and the floor was not on properly on the left hand side and I could feel it in the way my car was behaving. I think the footage speaks for itself: he was struggling with his tyres and I had almost come alongside him and for no reason, he moved over and hit me. I let you be the judge… It’s pointless for me to say any more about it.

“However, I do want to congratulate Sebastian Vettel: he is a great guy and deserves this title and I am very happy for him.”

Another Hamilton and Massa Incident

October 10, 2011

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lewis Hamilton and Felipe Massa made contact yet again as they were approaching the chicane just after half distance resulting in Massa losing part of his front wing. The stewards investigated the coming together but concluded that it was a racing incident. After the race Hamilton commented “The only thing I have to say is that I can’t see anything out of my mirrors and they vibrate down the straight so much that I had no idea he was there. Maybe it’s something we can fix, but anyway I have no problems with him.”

In response Massa stated “I don’t care, to be honest, about what he said. The only thing I care about is what he did. He was so slow in 130R and he stayed on the right-hand side. I was much quicker, so I went to the left-hand side and I braked there. I stayed on my line. He moved his car and touched my car. There’s nothing more to say. For what he says, I don’t care. I care about what the federation says and what the FIA does.

“They have penalised people for much less this year and this time they didn’t do it. It’s the second time in a row after the problem in qualifying as well in the last race, and after what happened yesterday and after many times this year. The FIA needs to take care of that. They are the only ones who can take care of that.”

Massa feels that nothing would be gained by speaking to Hamilton about this latest collision. “He doesn’t learn. As I said before, I don’t care. I race against him, against whatever driver in the same way. I don’t really care. He has already passed the time to speak, which I tried and he didn’t.” He did, however, suggest that he might discuss the matter with Charlie Whiting, the FIA Race Director. “Maybe if I see Charlie, I will speak to him but there’s nothing really to say now.”

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