Lewis Hamilton has praised McLaren’s rate of development since the start of the season after recording his first win of the year in the Turkish Grand Prix.
Hamilton told his official website:
I can’t keep the smile off my face – we are absolutely on it! Last year, you saw what we could do when we came from behind – we started the season at the back of the grid, but we were back at the front halfway through the year, and were still able to win two races.
This team is just an incredible development machine – it never stops. We live and breathe racing, and we are just churning out new parts, working harder than I’ve ever seen the team work to try and help us win these world championships.
I think it’s something that has really surprised Jenson – but in a good way; just the intensity and determination with which we push forward. I think the result in Turkey was the perfect motivation we needed, and I know the whole factory is working flat-out to bring forward the new parts. We go to Canada feeling pretty highly motivated, and I can just sense there’s a momentum building within the team – I felt the same feeling in 2008, and I know that we can achieve great things together over the next six months, so it’s all good.
He also said he enjoyed his wheel-to-wheel battle with team mate Jenson Button towards the end of the race:
To finally have a race with my team-mate – wheel to wheel – was a great feeling and to come out on top was a bonus. I am looking forward to many more races like that where we have fun, hard battles yet fair in our race to the championship.
I’ve known Jenson for a very long time, and I think we have a lot of respect for each other, and what we’ve achieved as drivers. We’re both world champions, so we have a certain amount of pressure removed from our shoulders too.
And I’ve really got to know Jenson well over the past six months. We’ve been working hard, we’ve spent a lot of time together, at the circuit and at events arranged by Vodafone and our other partners – it’s funny, but I think that, because we’ve spent a lot of downtime together during filming days or appearances, that we’ve actually got to know each other better than if, say, we’d only been working together at the track. He brings a lot of positive energy to the race weekends, and he’s made our team stronger, so these are all positives.
I think it’s inevitable that we’ll be battling again on the track sooner or later. There are 12 races left, and I’d be surprised if we weren’t racing each other again at some point soon. Of course, we’ll both work hard to make it’s fair, but our eyes are open to the fact that it will happen again – and, actually, I think that’ll be cool, because he’s a good guy to race with.
Button has won two races to Hamilton’s one this year. While McLaren lead the constructors’ championship by a single point from Red Bull, Button is second in the drivers’ title, four points ahead of Hamilton.