Hamilton: ‘It’s sweeter to win by overtaking’

2011 Chinese Grand Prix

Sebastian Vettel, Lewis Hamilton, Shanghai, 2011

Sebastian Vettel, Lewis Hamilton, Shanghai, 2011

Lewis Hamilton says being able to overtake Sebastian Vettel to win in China made his victory “sweeter”.

Hamilton said: “China was great because we made it work out on the track – it’s always sweeter to win a race when you’ve overtaken the cars ahead.

“And in my final stint I got past Nico [Rosberg], Felipe [Massa] and Sebastian for the win, which hopefully was great for all the fans watching.”

He compared the victory to his 2008 wins in the rain at Monaco and Silverstone, saying: “Those two wins weren’t just about aggression either – I won those races through pure speed but also with intelligence, and with support from everyone in the pitlane. They were really complete race wins – and they’re the most satisfying.”

He said after his problems in Malaysia he approached the Shanghai weekend determined to keep fresh sets of tyres for the race:

“We worked to make the race strategy work from the moment we arrived at the track on Thursday.

“After Malaysia, I really wanted to make sure we’d have enough tyres for the race, so I went into our first engineering meeting of the weekend with my mind made up that I wanted to hold onto my tyres and keep as many sets as fresh for the race.”

He added: “It would have been easy for the engineers to have just looked at me and said, ??No’, but they always listen and they always find a way of making it work.”

Hamilton believes the team need to make more progress with their car: “We’ve still got more work to do to be able to match Red Bull.

“Don’t get me wrong, what we’ve done has been incredible, but we need to go into the Turkish Grand Prix with more upgrades and improvements if we’re to continue fighting at the front. And we know that other teams won’t be standing still either.”

2011 Chinese Grand Prix

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127 comments on Hamilton: ‘It’s sweeter to win by overtaking’

  1. maxthecat said on 20th April 2011, 13:05

    Ha, If Lewis went on Mastermind his specialist subject should be ‘the bleeding obvious’ ;)

    • brxtr (@broxter) said on 20th April 2011, 13:10

      So you’d rather him just ignore the questions he gets asked?

      • SparkyJ23 (@sparkyj23) said on 20th April 2011, 13:24

        Indeed – I wouldn’t be surprised if the haters come on here saying how its better to win passing during pit stops…

      • GeeMac (@geemac) said on 20th April 2011, 14:30

        Exactly. If he answered that question by saying “Well duh.” he’d be slated for being arrogant and obnoxious. Sometimes we have to just cut sport stars some slack, they get asked stupid questions 24 hours a day and they don’t have the option of just fobbing off the journo’s who ask them.

      • infy (@infy) said on 20th April 2011, 15:01

        [quote]So you’d rather him just ignore the questions he gets asked?[/quote]

        Pretty much the same situation Alonso is constantly put through. He answers the questions as best he can, but no matter how or what he says he is torn to bits.

        • RIISE (@riise) said on 20th April 2011, 15:11

          Because everyone wants to criticize the best, and Alonso fits in as the very best.

          • Elliot Horwood said on 20th April 2011, 20:34

            Hamilton is the best all his F1 season he has been within a chance of winning the world title.

            Has Alonso? NO!

            Has Hamilton? YES!

          • Derek said on 21st April 2011, 11:07

            Alonso, Hamilton & Vettel are the best of the current crop. I would say that Alonso is the most complete. Vettel is the fastest, and Hamilton is the best all out racer.

            I’ve been watching F1 since 1967, and I am a Hamilton fan, but I recognise class drivers. Oh, and watch out for Paul Di Resta!

          • Franz said on 21st April 2011, 21:57

            I’m inclined to agree with you Derek. I myself haven’t been watching as long as you have, but I’ve got about 25 years of F1 watching under my belt (haven’t missed watching a single race in well over 10 years).

            Of the current crop of drivers I think Alonso really is the most complete: LH & Seb are just as quick (maybe even a smidge quicker), but nobody can do what Alonso does with an ill-handling car. He’s also a great strategist who’s always thinking World Championship rather than immediate race win.

            Hamilton is the best all-out racer, hands down… & if you really love racing it’s hard not to love watching this guy drive. Sometimes he’s a little bit impulsive but when he gets his head down, watch out. Nobody overtakes like (and where) Lewis Hamilton does, & anyone following his career since the lower formulas knows he’s been driving like that & picking off class drivers at will for quite some time now.

            Vettel is fast… really fast. He’ll rarely lose if he’s on pole but his race craft needs a LOT more work to challenge the likes of Alonso & Lewis. Overtaking quick drivers isn’t his strongest suit, & his defensive driving is painfully transparent. His shortcomings become apparent every single time he’s not at the front, & personally I think he’s in for a rude awakening when his Red Bull is no longer the fastest sled out there. Just my opinion, of course.

          • Jeffrey Powell said on 24th April 2011, 12:09

            I to have been an F1 fan since the mid 60’s ,I am a great fan of Lewis. For me the ultimate driver is the one in with a chance in every race if not to win to show his determination to be the best. Alonso is similar to Lewis in determination and skill normally with a slightly slower car he will press on and allways be in chance of a good result by sustained pressure.Lewis it would appear learnt the lesson of a similar style to Alonso’s in K.L. Alonso it seems forgot the tyres only last a few laps in China and couldn’t keep up with his slower team mate. Bring back proper tyres and lets have some genuine racing ,I am sure all the fans wanted was more overtaking and less traffic jams,DRS applied properly would have produced the required result, negating the aero problems and allowing the real press on drivers to show their metal.

      • alex said on 22nd April 2011, 13:29

        I’d rather “they were good, but it was soooo easy because I had fresh tires!!!” :)

        Vettel, a Senna? Maybe:
        http://en.espnf1.com/redbull/motorsport/story/46722.html

    • Electrolite said on 20th April 2011, 16:14

      Sure, it’s an obvious point, but ask any other driver on the grid and they’d say the same. It’s because it’s Hamilton that it attracts enough attention which warrants it’s own article, which is why it suddenly seems obvious I think. No offence to Keith.

    • Henry said on 20th April 2011, 17:38

      I love the fact that some people here are such devoted fanboys of Hamilton that they ignore what has been written and jump on what they think has been said like a pack of starving tiger cubs…

      It was clearly an amusing comment, slightly tongue in cheek, and probably fair!

    • Well, not really. A lot of drivers, (Senna and Vettel included) seem to prefer to win by qualifying on pole, crushing the opposition with pure speed, winning in record time, setting the fastest lap in the process.
      Others, like Hamilton, Mansell & Montoya, seem to flourish when there’s targets ahead, that need to be closed down.
      Again, not fact, just the perception I get.

  2. Rob G (@rob-g) said on 20th April 2011, 13:11

    Frankly if China showed us anything it would be that Red Bull are still a country mile ahead and should have won that race. If I were Red Bull I’d take KERS off the car and just race without it because at the moment they’re slightly faster than McLaren when it’s not working for half the race anyway. To add to that Turkey will also suit the RB7 over the MP4-26 as it’s a circuit that demands more downforce than the Shanghai International Circuit.

    • Vishy said on 20th April 2011, 15:39

      Don’t be so sure. End of second stint Massa was right on the tail of Vettel.

      It is on the Primes that Vettel extended his lead over Massa. Looks like Vettel/Red Bull is able to do better on Primes then the rest of the field.

      However if everyone had fresh rubber all the time, then only Hamilton seems to match the RedBulls.

    • Henry said on 20th April 2011, 17:40

      I agree, people can’t see that on the same fuel and tyres Red Bull half half a second over the rest…even though its obvious in every quali ;)

      Thing is, if they took off the kers they would get destroyed off the line on any circuit with a decent run down to the first corner, like webber in Malaysia. So any idea of a start-only one would be pretty damn good!

      • John H said on 20th April 2011, 18:15

        People also can’t see that if Red Bull don’t get KERS going properly by mid-season, the others will have caught up (or be getting close) in the aero department and by the end of the season will be faster.

        Remember that Vettel finished ahead of Webber, even with the inferior strategy. Taking the whole weekend into account you’ll see that it was because KERS was working on one car and not on the other.

      • Phil said on 20th April 2011, 20:29

        Race pace and low fuel pace are two different things though.

        • Patrickl (@patrickl) said on 20th April 2011, 20:34

          Indeed. It’s amazing how little difference in race there really is.

          There can be as much as a second or 2 seconds difference in a single qualifying lap, but in the race it will be barely a tenth.

          It looks like the tyres are limiting the performance to a similar level on all cars. Probably mostly based on downforce.

  3. AndrewTanner (@andrewtanner) said on 20th April 2011, 13:12

    Clearly he’s having a good few days!

  4. Manuel said on 20th April 2011, 13:14

    I would change Monaco for Canada 2010. I think Silvestone08, canada10 and maybe china this year or idianapolis07 are his top 3 best wins!

    • David BR said on 20th April 2011, 14:03

      and Spa 2008, my personal favourite :)

    • Stubie (@stubie) said on 20th April 2011, 15:31

      There have been quite a few memorable wins from Hamilton for me.

      Canada 10 (I was there!), USA 07, Silverstone 08, Monaco 08 are all favorites, as well as… Spa 08 ;-) (oh yes I did! I’m starting that fight again! LOL!)

      but I do like some others, like…

      Hockenheim 08 anyone? Crew messes up pitstop / safety car routine and you still pull it off.

      The pass on Webber in Hungary 09? then Renault screwing up ALO’s wheel (ugh!)
      Winning in a crappy car can also be a thrill.

      • lewymp4 (@lewymp4) said on 20th April 2011, 17:12

        Silverstone 08′ would be my top choice, but Hockenheim 08′ is awfully close. Ross Brawn claimed it reminded him of some of Michael’s best. How he was able to overcome the poor strategy of Mclaren’s pitwall was amazing……honorable mention Spa 08′

  5. sw6569 (@sw6569) said on 20th April 2011, 13:14

    sw6569: ‘It’s sweeter to watch a win by overtaking’

  6. Gerry said on 20th April 2011, 13:26

    All I can say is “GO LEWIS” !!!

    • RIISE (@riise) said on 20th April 2011, 16:58

      Why? For winning a race that was due to Vettel being on the wrong strategy?

      • lewymp4 (@lewymp4) said on 20th April 2011, 17:14

        That’s life!

      • Oliver said on 20th April 2011, 17:31

        Vettel still had tyres, and they had several laps to react when they saw, Hamilton and Webber setting fast times.
        Strategy is part of racing. The wrong stretegy is no different from a slow driver. You must have the mental capacity to think of all the scenarios, not to just floor the throttle and drive off.

      • Paper Tiger said on 20th April 2011, 17:34

        I was thinking more because he won a thrilling race in a car that wasn’t the fastest by a combination of amazing driving, clever strategy and bold overtaking, but I get the feeling that the glass is always half empty with you.

      • russ said on 20th April 2011, 18:08

        Yes,and your point is?

      • John H said on 20th April 2011, 18:18

        Come on chap, Alonso has won some great races in his time and so called Hamilton ‘fan-boys’ such as myself acknowledge it. Maybe it wouldn’t hurt you too much to do the same and realise the win wasn’t just about ‘Vettel being on the wrong strategy.’

      • ;379 said on 20th April 2011, 18:40

        @RIISE, yeah but Vettel was very close to being on the right strategy. If he had been able to extract just a little more on each stint, people would have been praising the Red Bull genious of jumping the Mclaren through strategy.

        • Patrickl (@patrickl) said on 20th April 2011, 20:42

          In fact it was only Hamilton who actually made the 3-stop strategy work.

          If he hadn’t gotten past Button, Rosberg, Button and Hamilton would have been behind Vettel. Then people would have been singing Vettel’s magnificent tyre management skills and Red Bull’s amazing strategy.

          • jake said on 20th April 2011, 22:52

            very true, we can’t count Webber as making it work becuse his strategy was all about fresh tyres. As you say, Hamilton was the only one other than schumi to finish higher than he started on the 3-stop

          • Ace said on 21st April 2011, 2:54

            jake:

            we can’t count Webber as making it work becuse his strategy was all about fresh tyres

            Say whaaat?!

      • BasCB (@bascb) said on 20th April 2011, 19:37

        And McLaren changing their strategy during the race, reacting to circumstances?
        Red Bull still states, that Vettels strategy gave him the best possible result.

      • Elliot Horwood said on 20th April 2011, 20:33

        ummm didnt vettel win the world championship beacuse webber was on the wrong stategy….

      • Patrickl (@patrickl) said on 20th April 2011, 20:35

        Vettel simply couldn’t make his strategy work and he didn’t have any other options either.

        So yeah.

      • jraybay-HamiltonMclarenfan said on 26th April 2011, 3:59

        boo hoo :( xD

  7. beckenlima (@beckenlima) said on 20th April 2011, 13:50

    Theres a interesting overtaking statistic provided by the guys from ‘thecliptheapex’ showing that was Lewis who made more overtaking in the Chinese GP, 8, against Webber, whom made 7.

    It shows that Mark had much more clear air in the race than we think and that Lewis really have to fight hard to win.

    • GameR_K (@gamer_k) said on 20th April 2011, 15:00

      Seriously!!! Starting from 18th gives you more clear air… May I know how ‘we’ arrived at that assumption?

    • perez made 7, webber made 15…

    • katederby (@katederby) said on 21st April 2011, 11:15

      Webber made 15 passes on track, Hamilton 8… 15 is a more than 8.
      I posted the list of over takes from Clip The Apex already.

      • David BR said on 21st April 2011, 12:44

        Can anyone settle this? 15 Webber passes on track or half of these via the pits?

        • katederby (@katederby) said on 21st April 2011, 16:05

          From cliptheapex.com

          15 on track over takes…

          Lap 2 – 2 Webber passed 17 Pérez for 16th

          Lap 4 – 2 Webber passed 11 Barrichello for 15th

          Lap 12 –
          2 Webber passed 25 D’Ambrosio for 19th
          2 Webber passed 24 Glock for 18th

          Lap 13 – 2 Webber passed 18 Buemi for 17th

          Lap 16 – 2 Webber passed 21 Trulli for 16th

          Lap 17 – 2 Webber passed 20 Kovalainen for 13th

          Lap 28 – 2 Webber passed 11 Barrichello for 14th

          Lap 31 – 2 Webber passed 17 Pérez for 10th

          Lap 34 – 2 Webber passed 10 Petrov for 7th

          Lap 38 – 2 Webber passed 7 Schumacher for 6th

          Lap 45 – 2 Webber passed 5 Alonso for 6th

          Lap 51 – 2 Webber passed 6 Massa for 5th

          Lap 54 – 2 Webber passed 8 Rosberg for 4th

          Lap 55 – 2 Webber passed 4 Button for 3rd

  8. butterdori (@butterdori) said on 20th April 2011, 13:59

    Yes, he seems very proud to see that his strategy worked

    Warning! Flamebait!

    “I won those races through pure speed but also with intelligence”

    Is he calling Vettel slow and stupid? lol

  9. verstappen said on 20th April 2011, 14:10

    His driving really is slowly winning me over.

    Slowly, because everything else we as fans see, are interviews and my perception of him after all the interviews I read and saw, is that he just comes across as too arrogant for my taste.

    But boy, what a drive. I’m still impressed! So he probably earns it to be arrogant.

    • Charlie said on 26th April 2011, 4:04

      uhh I dont see how he is arrogant. He is quite confident in himself and he’s never gone around saying “im the best in the field, i’m the best ever” He is no worse than Sebastian vettel who sticks up his index finger after every victory like he is the best, for example. Maybe you need to brush up on the definition of arrogance.

  10. Robbie said on 20th April 2011, 14:20

    I don’t have a problem with what LH is saying…I agree…and I also agree that it is sweeter to watch a race won that way too…

    The only issue I do have is that these days half the passes are made on drivers whose tires, meant to wear out and mix things up by design, by the FIA’s request, are in essence one of the ‘gadgets’ this year, and I consider a pass on someone whose gadget isn’t working less sweet than a pass on someone in a more apples to apples comparison…

    Yeah, I know it is the same for everyone, and it is up to all the teams to put together the best strategy to deal with said tires, and I also think several teams learned a lot this past weekend about the tires and how strategy can be worked around them for success …that said, I would much prefer an F1 where mechanical grip dominates aero dependancy such that we don’t need DRS, and a slow car cannot hold off a fast car just because of dirty air…

    Real tires, less wing, no DRS, and then I would agree with LH even more…

    Actually, to simplify even further, back when they brought grooved tires in and the drivers thought that was a joke, drivers like JV said the better direction to go would be to bring back the big fat slicks that F1 used to use in the 70’s…they created enough drag on the straightaways that teams were forced to run less wing if they wanted any kind of respectable speed…thus two birds would be killed with one stone…big fat slicks equals more mechanical grip…less wing due to running said big fat slicks equals less aero dependancy…all totals up to ‘real’ passes of the apples to apples type, not ones created by gadgets…

    • Oliver said on 20th April 2011, 17:39

      By making the extra stop, Hamilton fell back over 20 seconds behind Vettel. Making up such lost ground will also use up the life of the tyres. So, Hamilton first had to make up lost ground, then still had to overtake on the dusty and “marbled” sections of the track. He had probably until that lap to do it and he made good use of his opportunity. Trying to get past Rosberg took away several laps worth of life from him tyres.
      Any strategy that puts you behind other cars and forces you to overtake, is a risky strategy, and as Vettel himself will say, “you drop your pants and show the world what you got”. :-)

      • Peter said on 20th April 2011, 23:23

        is marbles or is it balls?

      • Mike said on 21st April 2011, 9:38

        Marbles

        And yeah, it annoys me when people say, “Well, Lewis had better tyres” Conveniently forgetting that not only do all the other drivers also have the same options, but it did actually cost Hamilton well over 20 seconds to make the extra stop.

  11. Bernard (@bernard) said on 20th April 2011, 14:27

    Further to the China 2011 Webber v Hamilton debate:

    Q1:

    Vettel – 1:35.674 (first run – 3rd flying lap)
    Webber – 1:36.580 (first run – 3rd flying lap)

    Webber did not have KERS, he did however need to go for a second run on new hards only to then improve by 1 tenth to 1:36.468 – nowhere near enough.

    Even if Webber had a fully working KERS and got everything out of it (upto .35 seconds)* he would still have been borderline with Maldonado in 17th.

    * As stated in Q1 by Ted Kravitz with reference to the situation at Red Bull.

    Race:

    Hamilton – 38 laps on softs (13 on new tyres)
    Webber – 46 laps on softs (all on new tyres)

    Again, Webber did have intermittent KERS issues in the race, however this loss is more than offset by gains from new soft tyres particularly with cars ahead of him being fundimentally slower. Also, as his race was spent entirely attacking slower cars he also had more to gain from DRS.

    Starting 18th Webber completed the highest number of overtakes – 15:

    1st stint (hard) – Pérez (16th), Barrichello (15th)

    2nd stint (soft) – D’Ambrosio (19th), Glock (18th), Buemi (17th), Trulli (16th), Kovalainen (13th)

    3rd stint (soft) – Barrichello (14th), Pérez (10th), Petrov (7th), Schumacher (6th)

    4th stint (soft) – Alonso (6th), Massa (5th), Rosberg (4th), Button (3rd)

    Starting 3rd Hamilton completed the second highest number of overtakes – 8:

    1st stint (soft) – n/a

    2nd stint (soft) – Pérez (8th), Heidfeld (7th)

    3rd stint (soft) – di Resta (6th), Alonso (5th), Button (2nd)

    4th stint (hard) – Rosberg (3rd), Massa (2nd), Vettel (1st)

    The overtaking information above may not be perfect (1st lap data not included) but it helps paint a picture of how the race unfolded for each driver.

    Webber overtook 7 more competitors than Hamilton (15 vs 8).

    Coincidentally, 7 of Webbers overtakes consisted of 2 Virgins, 2 Lotus’, 2 Williams and 1 Torro Rosso.

    Though driving the fastest car in the field, one would be hard pressed to see any ‘competition’ here I think you’ll agree.

    All consisdered, this explains my decision to award Hamilton driver of the weekend.

    overtaking data

    • Paul F said on 20th April 2011, 14:40

      Very thorough. Thanks.

    • DaveW (@dmw) said on 20th April 2011, 15:51

      Nice work.

      Taking nothing from Webber. He drove a mistake free race and made 15 passes without running into the back of anyone.

      However, the tires really gave him super-powers. Relative to the race winner, for Webber, an additional 33 laps on new soft tires (!) and an 8 lap edge on soft tires decided the game. That is at least half a minute of track time, conservatively.

      Given how easy it is to pass and inferior car now with the DRS McPassing button and the fact even competitive cars become statues when their tires go off, it seems that if you have a heap of new soft tires, nothing will stop you from raging right to the front from wherever you start. Heck, if you are a midfield team or lower, why not start a guy from the pits with a full arsental of fresh tires and see what happens? (Sauber please start Kobayashi from pit lane with a deck of new softs!)

      In Turkey, RBR will not be so foolish to try to drop .7s on McLaren in Q3, just for fun, if it means using even one more set of soft tires. Q3 from now on is going to be like in the olden days. People will sip gatorade in the garage until 2 minutes to go. For FI/Mercedes/maybe Renault, if they make it to Q3, it may be better to not even run at all.

    • Oliver said on 20th April 2011, 17:05

      This is where statistics lies.
      Webber didn’t pass 15 cars on track, half of those over takes where by pitting and undercutting.

    • DVC said on 21st April 2011, 8:07

      One thing you seem to have forgotten about is the very little running Webber got in FP3. Given he had almost no running in the session before qualifying, is it any wonder that his first run in Q1 was off the pace?

      • Bernard (@bernard) said on 21st April 2011, 15:41

        Given he had almost no running in the session before qualifying, is it any wonder that his first run in Q1 was off the pace?

        And what about his second Q1 run?

        Just because something isn’t mentioned doesn’t mean it’s forgotten. He was expected to get through but wasn’t quick enough – he said it himself.

  12. antonyob said on 20th April 2011, 14:28

    i dont think Lewis is arrogant at all. he never has been, hes always done his best to answer questions without being boring. but he iis still very young andkid who apparantly have it all can sometimes come across badly to certain people. but mainly thats their issue.

    anyway who cares, this isnt Heat magazine, hes a sensational driver who has the lot, overtaking brilliance, raw pace, agression, ability to drive a car fast in oversteer and intelligence. why on earth it takes time to warm to someone with that lot is beyond me!

    • Robbie said on 20th April 2011, 15:33

      Sorry to play devils advocate here but sometimes it takes time to warm to someone in F1 when they have been considered coddled by the likes of Ron Dennis since their youth, ie. spoiled, and according to FA when he was at Mac, the designated number one on the team without really earning it at the time…then there was the recent incident where he lied to the FIA…

      I still question his ability to win a WDC when the pressure is at it’s greatest…one year he did eveything possible to lose the WDC in the final three races, and in fact did lose it…the next year he nearly lost it again, and only won it thanks to a stupidly slow final lap of Glock’s which took the WDC out of FM’s hands, FM having done everything right that day when the pressure was at it’s greatest, LH nearly throwing it away two years in a row…

      But I guess to LH it is ‘sweet’ to overtake a car going at a crawls pace, for the WDC, said crawl’s pace of Glock’s being the only way he(LH) did it…

      • Mouse_Nightshirt (@mouse_nightshirt) said on 20th April 2011, 16:07

        I fail to see how a gearbox malfunction in Brazil 07 was Lewis’ fault…

        • Robbie said on 20th April 2011, 16:47

          You are right, it wasn’t…however two races prior LH was investigated but by his good fortune escaped penalty for erratic behaviour behind a safety car that caused a collision between Webber and Vettel in the Japanese GP, and one race prior in China LH beached his car going into the pits, thus opening the door for the likes of KR to win the WDC that year…

          • Malos said on 20th April 2011, 17:02

            Admit it. You HATE HAMILTON!!!

          • David BR said on 20th April 2011, 17:13

            This stuff made a bit more sense 4 years ago when Hamilton was emerging, but doubting he’s one of the best drivers on the grid now after so many good races few others have ever matched defies any logic. All the other incidents you mention have been discussed countless times – whatever. However he won 2008 because of some superb driving throughout the season, not because he crawled past Glock on the final corner at Interlagos.

          • lewymp4 (@lewymp4) said on 20th April 2011, 21:17

            When Vettel ran into the back of Webber at Japan in 2007, the blame by some was placed on the doorstep of Hamilton. I guess those critics felt that Lewis had the resposibility of driving…2…cars at the same time. I know that Lewis is good, but not that good……unbelievable!

      • Oliver said on 20th April 2011, 17:12

        Massa did everything right on that day, but Massa didn’t do everything right in all the previous races. The championship isn’t won at the last race, but lost.

        • Robbie said on 20th April 2011, 17:35

          Don’t get me wrong…I don’t doubt LH is a great driver…I was merely giving examples of why some may not have warmed to him, as antonyob was asking…so…Malos…I don’t hate LH…

          You guys are also right that it is also about what goes on during the season…however, I will always look to how drivers behave when the pressure is at it’s greatest, and that will always be as the season winds down with a few races to go and two or three potential WDC winners at hand…they can all drive cars damn well…I want to see them do it when the mental game is at it’s greatest…

          Oliver…try telling KR, who won the WDC in 07, that the WDC ‘isn’t won at the last race, but lost’…

          • Oliver said on 20th April 2011, 18:00

            If you look at the world championship as you are in contention until you drop out, then you will get an idea what I mean.
            If the championship was won at the last race, then why bother showing up for the first 15,16,17 or 18 races? Why not just show up at the last race and win it.
            So a driver is still in contention until he either drops out of contention, or his rival drops out of contention.
            So in 2007, despite winning the race, Kimi didn’t win the championship, until Lewis dropped out of contention.

            You may claim you don’t hate Hamilton, but you will never warm up to him for your own reason.
            F1 fans who are objective and rational, will criticize Hamilton when he errs or acts daft, but they will appreciate when he does something right or exciting. And the same goes for any other driver. But when you bring up issues from past years that have no relevance to the topic, it shows you have some resentment.

          • John H said on 20th April 2011, 18:24

            I don’t get it. That was his first season in F1 wasn’t it? Blimey, it must be tough to impress Robbie.

          • jraybay-HamiltonMclarenfan said on 26th April 2011, 4:09

            Am a big Lewis fan obviously but yes he isn’t one of those guys who likes to be in front with everyone chasing him he said so himself last year. I think he likes to hunt down the competition but for me he hasn’t had really fast chassis in awhile and I think he has to put extra pressure on himself to do well so mistakes have been made in unfortunate times.

      • John H said on 20th April 2011, 22:10

        Robbie, Robbie, Robbie. ‘Depending on someone else staying out on dries in the wet’

        That is wrong on so many levels!

      • lewymp4 (@lewymp4) said on 20th April 2011, 22:54

        Hamilton coddled by Ron Dennis……Do you truly believe that if Lewis didn’t perform at a high level during his relationship with Ron, that his support would have continued? If Hamilton didn’t maintain that high level, he would have been dropped by Mclaren and Dennis like a hot rock. Lewis wasn’t a Nico Rosberg or a Nelson Piquet Jr., who did receive financial support from their father’s now matter how they may have performed. Anthony Hamilton didn’t have those kinds of financial resources for Lewis.

        Lewis in 2007, as you said, ” he did everything possible to lose the WDC in the final…three…races “. I guess that you forgot Lewis won the 2007 Japanese GP.

        Regarding as you said, ” thanks to stupidly slow final lap of Glock “……Have you ever seen Glock’s teammate Jarno Trulli’s time on that very same lap?

        Last lap 2008 Brazilian GP

        Timo Glock…………1:44.731
        Jarno Trulli……….1:44.800
        Lewis Hamilton……..1:26.126

        It may be hard for you to accept, but reality can show you why Hamilton was able to catch Glock on the last lap, and do you really believe that Trulli, also put in a…stupidly…final lap, remember that both Glock and Trulli were on the same tire strategy.
        Lewis became WDC in 2008, because he never gave up and continued to push, and showed in that last lap the heart of…..CHAMPION!

    • antifia said on 20th April 2011, 15:47

      I don’t think many people disagree that Lewis is a great driver with loads of talent but the bit about him not being arrogant, or that it shouldn’t matter anyway, is a little more contentious. Perhaps nothing shows more his dark side than the response he gave when Mclaren (the organization that made him what he is) said they would like to have him till the end of his carreer. I am not saying he should take the offer, but going to the media and responding that loyalty has limits was just crude. It is like that guy that marries a heiress and responding to a public statement from her that she loves him, says (also publicly) that this is a marriage of interests and there is so much he’d put up with to continue by her side. I don’t find him gracious in victory or dignified in defeat. That is why, although I truly admire his talents, I find it rather difficult to warm up to him.

      • Oliver said on 20th April 2011, 17:25

        This is a ridiculous argument. Mclaren wasn’t giving Hamilton free food, and his situation is no different from that of Vettel, who was groomed by Redbull since he was 13 or 14.
        Whatever Mclaren has spent in sponsoring Hamilton, through the different categories of racing, he has more than repaid several folds, with respect to the sponsorship he attracts to the team and merchandize Mclaren market.

        • Robbie said on 20th April 2011, 17:39

          And Vettel has also been accused of being a spoiled brat with some learning to do in terms of handling matters…some of his actions last year, and the team’s covering for said actions, brought his maturity into question…

          Not saying that is anything avoidable for young drivers coddled by their teams…it’s just a reality, and may present reasons why some fans may not warm up to some drivers…

          • Robbie said on 20th April 2011, 18:23

            Actually, I have warmed up to LH, and I appreciate that he likely has learned some stuff along the way and if he finds himself in another WDC fight with a few races to go, which could easily be this year, I think he will be a force to be reconned with…so you are wrong in your armchair psycho-analysis of me…I have no resentment…

            Bringing up issues from the past is highly relevant…it’s what much of F1 forums and blogs are about…it’s comparing things drivers have done that show their abilities, characteristics etc…it shows what they are made of, or where they have come from…

            I think LH showed signs of choking under pressure, and his WDC was one he just squeaked into…if he himself differentiates overtaking wins as being sweeter ones, then that opens up the discussion for me to discern WDC’s won solidly vs. WDC’s won in spite of doing some things wrong when the pressure is at it’s greatest…

            As someone has pointed out to me FM lost the WDC because he didn’t do everything right for the races leading up to the final one, yet he was obviously ‘right enough’ in the season to get to a WDC shot by the final race…same with KR…but Oliver, you seem to be saying no driver actually wins a WDC…he just gets handed the trophy due to attrition of others…I disagree…I think a driver can go about his business, get himself into a WDC shot, let the others pressure themselves into mistakes, and then be there in the end, having done exactly what they needed to do in the end…FM did it in 07, but fell folly to Glock who went a ridiculous 20 seconds slower on his last lap than the previous one…WDC LH…I differentiate that from LH going out and stamping his authority on that WDC…doesn’t mean I would take the WDC from LH if I could…

          • Oliver said on 20th April 2011, 18:26

            Warming up to a driver and looking for minute faults or log induced myopia are two different things. I never warmed up to Schumacher, but I got to appreciate his efficiency and work ethics, despite the fact he was favoured extensively by the teams he drove for.
            I warmed up to Hill due to the circumstances surrounding his rise to F1, including his having to ride bikes and be a delivery man, and also the tumultuous circumstance that brought the role of lead driver to his feet. Despite that, I didn’t lie to myself that Hill was the greatest.
            Schumacher was too mechanical.
            Hill was making the human errors.
            Hamilton also makes the human errors.
            Obviously, he isn’t a robot.

          • Oliver said on 20th April 2011, 18:45

            Some fans don’t like Hamilton because he has a gap in his tooth, or a very deep tan. But that has nothing to do with racing. You can see neither when he is driving, so it is just a mind issue.

            I won’t go into an argument on the difference between winning a championship and haven it handed to you, when we have drivers accumulating points from the very first race.
            It doesn’t take a genius to discern that if you don’t accumulate sufficient points early on, you will fall out of contention.
            There is a difference however, to situations when a driver wins the final race, but still has to wait for his direct rival to fall out of contention, by not scoring a favourable final race position.

            Everyone knows the championship is more often than not, decided at the last race. But the last race is purely symbolic. It is the final tally. Which explains why the FIA will, on finding that 2 drivers are tied, go back to earlier races to determine the finishing order and hence the champion.
            If it was just the final race, then the driver who finishes ahead despite there being a tie, should have just been given the championship.

          • Robbie said on 20th April 2011, 19:16

            So even when I admit I have warmed to LH, now my level of warming is debated? Sheesh…note to self…don’t cross an LH fan…

            I just hope, and I firmly believe that LH himself would agree that winning by overtaking may be sweet, but winning by overtaking someone in an apples to apples comparison, who is not a sitting duck due to a tire situation mandated by the FIA that they admit is meant to shake up the field and reduce the ‘parade’ effect in F1, is even sweeter…

  13. Fixy (@fixy) said on 20th April 2011, 15:00

    He said after his problems in Malaysia he approached the Shanghai weekend determined to keep fresh sets of tyres for the race

    If Lewis becomes wise regarding strategy, then he will have no opponents.

    • Hewis Lamilton said on 20th April 2011, 15:58

      Let’s just hand Hammi the WDC now, save everyone a lot of time and money running all over the world racing.

      Please….

    • RIISE (@riise) said on 20th April 2011, 17:00

      Oh please, Lewis was the best of the 3 stoppers. Vettel was on a 2 stopper and still kept up to get 2nd.

      If Vettel and Hamilton are on practically the same strategy then Vettel will have no opponents.

      • Damon said on 20th April 2011, 17:30

        Yes until they have equal cars :)

      • Patrickl (@patrickl) said on 20th April 2011, 20:41

        and Webber’s car seems to be finally fixed now. If they manage to also install a working KERS in his car too, then both Vettel and Hamilton will have an opponent

        • bosyber said on 21st April 2011, 10:02

          This is getting a bit tiresome. Let’s add that if Alonso gets his car/tyres sorted, he gives them another fierce opponent. Or not, if he/Ferrari doesn’t manage.

          • Patrickl (@patrickl) said on 21st April 2011, 20:56

            I’ll bet that Webber thinks it’s tiresome yes. What’s your point?

            Are you such a fanboy that it bothers you when people mention that Webber’s car was defective in Australia, Malaysia and again in China? ***?

          • David-A (@david-a) said on 22nd April 2011, 2:46

            Webber was well off the pace of Hamilton and Vettel in Australia before his suspension failure. He’s had better races since, but I’m still not inspired with confidence that he will win the title.

          • Patrickl said on 24th April 2011, 13:53

            Webber had a faulty car all weekend yes. So?

      • Charlie said on 26th April 2011, 4:11

        you have an alonso helmet as an avatar but I see you kissing vettels ass more often than alonso. Do you like alonso’s helmet only?

  14. antifia said on 20th April 2011, 15:19

    God forbid, but this time I’ll have to agree with what Webber said after the race. I don’t recal the exact words but the gist was that with the way the tyres behave, if the guy in front has old tyres and the one behind have (reasonably) new ones, the guy in front is a sitting duck – he cannot put up a fight. LH was lapping 2.5 secs faster than Vettel in the end of the race exactly because of the different tyre strategies. Lewis is a great driver but every now and then he comes up with a hogwash like this. Passing Vettel in the end had nothing to do with Lewis driving particularly well or being a born overtaker – it was all down to pit strategy. And he knows it.

    • Anthony said on 20th April 2011, 15:59

      Then why didnt button do it? He qualified in front of Hamilton and passed Vettel in the first corner. Why didnt he win?

    • Anthony said on 20th April 2011, 16:00

      AND he was on the same strategy as Hamilton.

      Hamilton 1st.
      Button 4th.

      • TBone said on 20th April 2011, 16:25

        Exactly and, more to the point, as great as Webber’s drive was, isn’t it obvious that he would be so much quicker at the end of the race? LH/JB were on primes in the last stint – MW was on brand new options when his car was at its lightest, track was most rubbered in, etc.

        The RB7 still looks the quickest but when you consider even Massa was keeping Vettel honest for much of the race its clear Red Bull aren’t going to have it all their own way this year.

      • antifia said on 21st April 2011, 8:44

        Antony,
        I am not someone who rates Button very highly – in fact I find him the typical second rate driver. Do you want a even bigger win over Button: Webber – also in the same strategy.

    • Patrickl (@patrickl) said on 20th April 2011, 20:46

      antifa,

      Hamilton was only 5 to 6 tenths faster closing up to Vettel. That’s not a lot. Not like Webber who indeed was close to 3 seconds faster blazing past Alonso and such.

      How much faster Hamilton was AFTER he was already past Vettel doesn’t really mean much now does it?

      It just makes you look disingenuous for mentioning only that irrelevant lap time difference.

      • David BR said on 21st April 2011, 2:03

        Exactly. Vettel was actually blocking him fairly effectively at the obvious overtaking points. Where he passed him was completely unexpected as Vettel himself admitted. The TV coverage was actually in Ham’s car just before the overtake but panned out and missed it – presumably for the same reason. Much more to do with racing talent and adroit use of KERS.

        • bosyber said on 21st April 2011, 10:07

          It was also interesting that in the press conference, Hamilton mentioned that he didn’t want to try in the DRS zone, because Vettel would be expecting that and could thus defend there relatively easily, so he had to try somewhere/somewhat else.

          If that’s what DRS does with better drivers, ie. it gives them opportunity to get close, but not to overtake a good opponent with it due to predictability, them it’s really nice.

      • antifia said on 21st April 2011, 8:56

        Oh yeah, Patrickl, that is when the huge difference in tyre performance kicked in – after the pass. Talk about being disingenuous – the irony meter just went ballistic.
        I don’t know if people still have the mind set of previous seasons, when overtaking could be very difficult. It is no longer the case! Not only the DRS made it pretty easier, differnces in tyre wear/strategy made most of the moves a forgone conclusion. As I mentioned, Webber said as much after the race – and he was someone who had much bragging rights to lose, since he overtook all drivers LH did and then some.

  15. smifaye (@smifaye) said on 20th April 2011, 15:39

    For some reason, I keep reading this as Hamilton’s sweater. Like he was wearing some lucky sweater, from fruit of the loom or something. It’s been a long day….

    • John H said on 20th April 2011, 18:29

      “wearing some lucky sweater, from fruit of the loom or something”

      Comment of the day (for me at least).

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