Hamilton: “I just wasn’t quick enough”

F1 Fanatic round-up

In the round-up: Lewis Hamilton says: “I was quick in qualifying, I wasn’t quick in the race.”


Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

Loss of form baffles Lewis Hamilton (The Independent)

“I just wasn’t quick enough. I was quick in qualifying, I wasn’t quick in the race.”

Where has Lewis Hamilton gone? (The Buxton Blog)

“I almost want to grab him and slap him and ask where the hell Lewis Hamilton is? Where?s the friendly, open, passionate racer, who used to laugh off adversity and show the kind of racecraft on track that left you with your jaw on the floor?”

New low increases Lewis Hamilton concerns (BBC)

“There is something in Hamilton’s life, some distraction that is adversely affecting his performance. Only he can know what that is.”

Pirelli to discuss Q3 issue with FOTA (Autosport)

Paul Hembery: “There is nothing too wrong with the qualifying. This three session system is very good: it is just that conserving tyres is nonsense. And it is nonsense because if [Sebastian] Vettel and the top six can win races having gone through the three sessions, then it means everyone can do it.”

Nico Hulkenberg via Twitter

“I’m still in Japan and will fly to Korea on Wednesday. I will not drive there on Friday, because it’s quite a new Track for Adrian [Sutil] and [Paul di Resta].”

Forget Schuey… Vettel’s on course to become F1’s most decorated driver (Daily Mail)

“Turner also wants Simon Lazenby to front [Sky’s F1] coverage. While Sky Sports News presenter Georgie Thompson has been mooted as a possible option, Turner, who worked with Lazenby during his time in rugby, wants to bring him across to F1.”

In defence of the 2011 F1 season (The Guardian)

“It’s been no classic but there has been much to enjoy away from the [Vettel’s] domination up front. It is just that the big picture of the title race has marginalised a lot of the action into unconnected, one-off events on track.”

Petra Ecclestone wants to be taken seriously (Daily Telegraph)

Of passing interest to anyone who might like to know where a sizeable chunk of the money Bernie Ecclestone made from F1 has gone.

Japanese GP Review (Williams)

Chief operations engineer Mark Gillan: “Pastor [Maldonado’s] race balance on option tyres and low fuel during the last stint was reasonable but it is clearly evident that the overall pace of the car needs to dramatically improve.”

Seven meetings and new horizons in 2012 (World Series by Renault)

“As well as visiting the six tracks on the 2011 schedule, WSR will also be pitching up in Russia at the new Moscow Raceway.”

The Prancing Horse steps up its solidarity with Japan (Ferrari)

“On Saturday in Suzuka the team hosted a family that had lost everything because of the quake and tomorrow, Ferrari Japan, at the Japanese launch of the 458 Spider, will put up for auction the nose of a 150??? Italia used in the Australian Grand Prix, which bore the Japanese flag and the message ‘Forza Giappone.'”

Follow F1 news as it breaks using the F1 Fanatic live Twitter app.

Comment of the day

John H imagines how the 1979 French Grand Prix might have been affected by modern-day stewards:

News just in… Gilles Villeneuve handed 25-second post race penalty by the FIA after taking 32 years to review the footage. He has been demoted to fourth place a spokesman today confirmed.

Renault driver Rene Arnoux was handed second place and is said to be “ecstatic” that justice has finally been served describing Villeneuve?s driving as “mindless” and going on to comment that the former Ferrari ace “just doesn?t learn”.

Alan Jones is now classified third and is said to be “decidedly nonplussed” with the podium result.
John H

From the forum

Share any fans’ videos you’ve found from the Japanese Grand Prix. Here’s one to get you started:

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On this day in F1

Two years ago today Toyota announced Kamui Kobayashi would make his F1 debut in the Brazilian Grand Prix in place of the injured Timo Glock.

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92 comments on Hamilton: “I just wasn’t quick enough”

  1. Calum (@calum) said on 11th October 2011, 0:12

    If Hamilton had an extra world championship point for everytime his name is mentioned in the round up then the title race would still be on! ;)

  2. James (@jamesf1) said on 11th October 2011, 0:19

    We find ourselves asking this too much, but why dont drivers do doughnuts more often? It pleases the fans, the people that have paid good, hard earned, money to attend these GPs, and whilst they soak up every ounce of atmosphere going, seeing a driver do doughnuts must be like nothing on Earth.

    The FIA and FOTA want to connect with the fans more, how about allowing their drivers to express their jubiliation more often? Or even just showing off to the fans to thank their support? Kimi at Belgium 2007 and Lewis at Silverstone 2009 come to mind.

    Not a fan of Vettel’s, but top marks to him for treating the fans.

    • Icthyes (@icthyes) said on 11th October 2011, 0:22

      Personally I’ve never seen what the fuss about doughnuts is, seen one you’ve seen a hundred.

    • Fer no.65 (@fer-no65) said on 11th October 2011, 0:31

      the FIA don’t allow the drivers to do much either. They cannot stop on track and pick a flag from a marshall anymore either.

      The whole “celebration” after a race (inlap, podium ceremony…) is so lame. They should let the drivers celebrate the way they want.

      To think Valentino Rossi, when he won his 100 GP, he stepped off his bike and opened an enooormous flag with pics of all his 100 wins… that was a classic. F1 drivers don’t do it/are not allowed to do that.

    • Maksutov (@maksutov) said on 11th October 2011, 4:05

      but why dont drivers do doughnuts more often?

      Irrespective of FIA rules on what driver are alowed to do, there are a few reasons why drivers would be reluctant to put up a bit of a show either way:

      1) Drivers are required (due to critical weight settings) to collect as much rubber after the race instead of burn more of it.

      2) The engine has to be reused for the next race. Why risk revving the muck out of it for nothing. Save the car save the engine.

      Resource restrictions unfortunately

      • James (@jamesf1) said on 11th October 2011, 11:09

        But if the engine is on it’s last cycle, then this shouldnt matter too much?

        The scowl the FIA give to people doing doughnuts and celebrating with their fans (i.e collecting a flag) is pretty wrong in my view. Let the drivers show emotion, make the sport seem that little less corporate.

        Doughnuts are just as spectacular the first time as the thousandth time in my view.

      • Joey-Poey (@joey-poey) said on 11th October 2011, 16:16

        Not to mention they need enough fuel for a sample and they run that pretty short, too.

  3. Icthyes (@icthyes) said on 11th October 2011, 0:20

    Haha that COTD is pure quality.

  4. electrolite (@electrolite) said on 11th October 2011, 0:53

    “I’m still in Japan and will fly to Korea on Wednesday. I will not drive there on Friday, because it’s quite a new Track for Adrian [Sutil] and [Paul di Resta].”

    Ha! Sutil did spend the whole of last years race crashing into people and/or driving on the grass…not his finest hour by any means. So he probably needs to learn the actual track. ‘Track’ being the asphalt

  5. Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 11th October 2011, 1:23

    John H imagines how the 1979 French Grand Prix might have been affected by modern-day stewards

    The difference between Arnoux-Villeneuve and Hamilton-Massa is that Villeneuve never actually hit Arnoux.

    • matt90 (@matt90) said on 11th October 2011, 3:00

      Wasn’t there a lot of wheel banging? Different, obviously, but still ‘contact.’ I imagine bumping wheels without consequence used to be easier due to the shape of the cars.

      • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 11th October 2011, 4:20

        If there was wheel-banging, it clearly didn’t do any damage. The stewards arent penalising Hamilton because he’s hitting Massa – they’re penalising him because he’s damaging Massa’s car and ruining Massa’s race.

        • TimG (@timg) said on 11th October 2011, 6:34

          Wheel-banging with no damage and no “one defensive move” or weaving to break the tow. Villeneuve and Arnoux were both delighted afterwards to have had such an exciting battle, so no handbags via the media afterwards.

          The nearest modern comparison is Massa vs Kubica in Fuji 2007 – neither penalised.

        • BasCB (@bascb) said on 11th October 2011, 7:12

          Given the fact those cars are made of honeycomb aluminium and have hardly a FW to speak of, the hitting might have been far more severe without any bits breaking off like we have nowadays, especially with the front wings.

    • Dan Thorn (@dan-thorn) said on 11th October 2011, 8:11

      They banged wheels three or four times. The difference is that instead of moaning to the stewards about it, they got hold of the footage and sat watching it together with an audience of people in the paddock!

      Oh how times have changed.

      • BasCB (@bascb) said on 11th October 2011, 12:37

        Those were the times … :-)

      • John H (@john-h) said on 11th October 2011, 13:18

        That was kind of my point with the comment: just to highlight how things have changed for better or for worse (you can look at it both ways), not to highlight Massa or Hamilton in particular although they are flavour of the month at the moment.

        Personally I feel we currently penalise a little too much in a kind of ‘where there’s blame there’s a claim’ culture I guess, it’s always someone else’s fault. With that in mind from my perspective it was nice to see the stewards (including Alan Jones no less) not dishing them out left right and centre in Japan.

        Now if only there were more consistency ;)

    • Joey-Poey (@joey-poey) said on 11th October 2011, 16:28

      They do appear to touch on the final lap a couple times

  6. Mike (@mike) said on 11th October 2011, 1:50

    Lewis needs to ignore the media for starters….

    “there is something gnawing away at him”

    I’m not a fan of Lewis. But come on, he had one race where Button was quicker. People get so worked up about Lewis. No one even bats and eye lid when Button is slower.

    (note: When I say Media I don’t mean F1 Fanatic.)

    • Mike (@mike) said on 11th October 2011, 1:53

      When your making comparisons between the “warmth” shown in the pit box then I start to suspect an agenda. (@BBC article)

    • JCost (@jcost) said on 11th October 2011, 8:51

      Maybe a competitive car from day one would make wonders…

      He wants to be a WDC, seems that he refuses to feel OK with anything less than Champion. In fact, looking at Vettel form and car, LH could not stand a chance.

      • Mads (@mads) said on 11th October 2011, 9:59

        He did have a competitive car from day one.
        In Australia Hamilton was catching Vettel, and forced Vettel to pit to avoid the undercut.
        I think that is being very competitive.
        At least until the floor of his car broke and he had to slow down quite a bit.

        • JCost (@jcost) said on 11th October 2011, 16:58

          McLaren was impressive in Spain too, but they faild to be a permanent threat to Red Bull dominance. Hamilton and Alonso need competitive and consistent cars to pose a real threat to young Vettel, being good here and there is not enough to beat Red Bull. How many more points would’ve collect discounting his collection of mistakes? Eventually enough points to second on the standings, but Champion to be? I doubt.

          • Mads (@mads) said on 11th October 2011, 19:09

            I don’t think it is the car as much as it is McLaren finding new and ingenious ways to mess up everything.
            The RB7 haven’t been the fastest car everywhere, but McLaren have had so little consistency that even when they had the legs on the RB they were not really able to make the most of it. In Hugary for instance, it could have been an easy 1,2 finish. They could also have used RB’s horrible pistop in Monaco to win there, but they didn’t seem interested in that either.
            They haven’t had the fastest car all year, but they haven’t been behind all the time either.
            I will call a car competitive if it is on several occasions able to finish within 2 seconds of the lead driver, and at most tracks actually being the fastest in the race by quite some margin.
            The car might not be a championship winner, but it surely is competitive in terms of overall pace and tyre management. They just haven’t been able to use that fully, because they have messed it up. But that isn’t the cars fault.

    • Journeyer (@journeyer) said on 11th October 2011, 9:02

      I think it’s because Lewis was EXPECTED to be quicker (see Buxton’s blog post). Thing is, Jenson has outperformed Lewis over the last 5 GPs. It’s not just a one-off anymore – it’s starting to become a trend.

      • The Limit said on 11th October 2011, 14:16

        Could not agree more. For once someone has described the situation using sense and logic in equal measure.

    • Klaas (@klaas) said on 11th October 2011, 11:59

      I think the roots of Hamilton’s current form are:
      1. Sebastian Vettel – I think Vettel’s succes has come as a big blow for Lewis who until then was the like the God of F1, constantly in the spotlight. Being part of such a big team as McLaren, HAM expected to win back-to-back titles and make his own era in F1 but his plans were ruined by some kid (whom maybe Lewis doesn’t consider as talented as himself) who gets lucky to drive a super-car, wins a lot of races, championships and beats his records. Lewis finds himself out of the spotlight (the good one) and somehow angry, disappointed and frustrated by his team because for 3 years in a row they don’t provide him the best car.
      2. Jenson Button – the “nice guy” team-mate is too nice and the team seems to like him more and more. Button was smart enough to realise that before beating Hamilton on the track, he first must beat him within the team. He adopts the “good boy” strategy (that understands why he has to do so much PR work before his home GP) that is appreciated by the team but most importantly he manages to have a bigger say in the car development (as this year’s car seems to suit him better than the previous). From the statements that followed from McLaren after signing the multi-year contract, it seems that they are really impressed by his feed-back and are relying on him for the development of their future cars. This should be very concerning for Hamilton since he has a different driving style and if Jenson convinces the engineers to tailor the car on him things will become very difficult as Button will have both psychological and technical advantage. So I think Hamiton’s problems are just beginning…

      • Mr draw said on 11th October 2011, 13:11

        Spot on. Until 2008 he got used to winning and he was thinking no-one was even close to him on terms of ability, but the last years proved otherwise. However, last year Vettel wasn’t that impressive and lthough Hamilton was defeated in the championship, he didn’t lose his dignity. This year Vettel has improved a lot and he is humiliating all other drivers, including Hamilton. Hamilton’s streak of bad luck started in Monaco, where he felt he was in some sort of a “must win situation”, which he handled badly. From that point on, Vettel was left without any competition and Hamilton’s driving became more and more eratic. I hope he will learn a lot of this year. As Vettel shows, things can be quite different after just one year.

    • vho (@) said on 11th October 2011, 12:32

      But come on, he had one race where Button was quicker. People get so worked up about Lewis. No one even bats and eye lid when Button is slower.

      Jenson was quicker in Singapore and Monaco. The thing is, no one really expected Jenson to be beating Lewis, so people assumed it was the norm when Lewis was doing better than Jenson. Also, the media has portrayed that Jenson was coming into Lewis’ team at McLaren and that the team had established itself around Lewis – that fact is, the results are showing the opposite of the forecasted effect. Lewis is also struggling on the current rules this year especially with the tyres. When Lewis gets into trouble he will drive the wheels of the car to rectify the issue, but with the Perelli’s they don’t agree with the aggressive nature of Lewis’ driving. The tyres could stand a few aggressive laps from Lewis but over a race distance they simply can’t hold up.

    • Fixy (@fixy) said on 11th October 2011, 13:44

      I think once Lewis had two bad races, everyone attacked him, and coincidentally he had another bad race and everyone is bashing him; he tries to give his best to show he is good, sometimes exceeding the limit.

      • vho (@) said on 12th October 2011, 1:26

        The difference between Lewis having a bad race and Jenson having a bad race is that Lewis is involved (whether controvertially or not) in incidents. And in this year it seems to involve the same driver (Massa) a majority of the time.

        When Jenson has a bad race it’s down to poor car setup or a general lack of pace from the car/driver. When Lewis is having bad races this year it’s due to an incident. If he avoided some of these incidents he could’ve been on the podium. E.g. spin in Hungrary, clash with Massa in Singapore. And it also seems when he is having these incidents his so called “lesser team mate” is getting on the podium, and proving that the car is capable and that Lewis squandered the opportunity.

  7. 3 for Hamilton this time. Buxton wants to slap him; somebody else wants to prescribe Zoloft, or an exorcism. Is this a British media thing? The histrionic hand-wringing complex about how bad British sportsmen are supposedly doing all the time. I look at Germany, which has a heap of F1 drivers, and another multiple champion, but the mainstream German press just takes passing note of Vettel, by comparison. Meanwhile, all of Britain wants to make Hamilton stare at ink blots.

    COTD wins so much today.

    • BasCB (@bascb) said on 11th October 2011, 7:16

      @DaveW did you read that Buxton article?

      Buxton did work for the GP2 series organisers when Hamilton drove there and knows him quite well from his early days. He has been saying how good Hamilton is ever since. And he repeats it several times in that article.
      But he also writes how it seems Hamilton needs someone to help him regain that super self confidence and knowledge you are unbeatable a driver needs to get the most out of it.

      • AdrianMorse (@adrianmorse) said on 11th October 2011, 8:04

        I did read the Buxton article, and I found it a confusing piece. On the one hand, he says he cares about him, but on the other hand, he puts a pretty negative spin on some things:

        But he choked. He went against the requests of the team not to leave a gap to Button and he missed the cut.

        He choked? That’s a bit rich, surely? He got pretty close to Button who was going through the chicane pretty slowly (the team should have told Hamilton and Button to get a move on, and told them clearly).

        running the wheels off his McLaren in that first stint.

        Yes. getting a puncture was a massive mistake from Hamilton.

        And to hear Buxton tell it, Button has outclassed Hamilton since he arrived at McLaren.

        So when it was Button, not Hamilton, who took the first (and second) McLaren victory that year, Jenson didn’t just look good. He looked mega. He’s continued to look just that. Button’s stock has risen and risen. His racing has improved every week, to the extent that in my opinion he is driving better now and is more complete a driver than he was when he won the title in 2009.

        If Button had really outperformed Hamilton since his two early 2010 wins, he would have been world champion of 2010. Instead, that season, he was generally slower both on Saturday and on Sunday.

        But perhaps this article was Buxton’s way of slapping Hamilton

        • Funny thing about the “running the wheels off thing.” Hobbs and Matchett jumped straight down his throat when he said the same thing on Speed. Buxton is unbowed in his driving-causes-puncture campaign.

          But it doesn’t really matter whether Buxton or whoever is mislaying blame: In sports, politics, business when things don’t go well, bad luck and error merge into one pall in the public mind.

          You could say, well, he had to back off way early because you can’t know if Button was going to stop in the chicane for Massa. You could say he had a puncture and bad set up adjustment decision in the race. Etc. An alien spaceship could have come down and blown off his tire with a death ray, wouldnt matter. If it fi’s the narrative, it goes.

          When Button was getting smoked in qualifying the end of the last year and had his terrible swoon, he had his reasons, things happened, but it was just all on his account. Remeber his hideous weekend in Korea where he didn’t even make Q3? It was all head-shaking and “no grip, no balance.” I was saying that he was terrible and needed to replaced with Webber. What a difference a year makes. Now Webber can’t race his way out of a paper bag and Button is a genius.

          Buton took his troubles it like a man, figured out what went wrong and came back. Hamilton will do the same. Maybe the best thing he can learn from Button is what you learn driving for four teams in mostly terrible cars. How to keep you head up and bounce back, and not internalize the back luck.

    • Icthyes (@icthyes) said on 11th October 2011, 11:43

      I think you’re on the money there. Look at the crucifixion of the England football and rugby teams in last weekend’s papers, or Andy Murray even when he gets to a semi-final. Button himself in 2009 went from hero to bottler in 2 races…

  8. Eggry (@eggry) said on 11th October 2011, 3:22

    Yes, he wasn’t fast enough in the race early. I don’t know why but later he recovered. However already his race was ruined.

  9. wasiF1 (@wasif1) said on 11th October 2011, 4:24

    Hamilton I think may lacking self believe.

    • JCost (@jcost) said on 11th October 2011, 9:07

      Journalists alreadyrighting stories on “forget Schuey?”. My favourite F1 adage is still “nobody wins an F1 race in a Fiat Panda”. It is obvious that you need to be a fine driver to become a WDC, but being a fine driver is not enough. Jenson Button is a great driver but how did he add his name to the Champions book?

      Seb Vettel is a very good driver, but part of his success lies in the hands of Adrian Newey and his team, the day someone builds a car as competitive as Seb’s he will not win 10 races in a year. Much of the talk about Vettel has been referred to Alonso, but Fernando is yet to win a title since 2006. How many people predicted glorious years for Lewis Hamilton back in 2007? The same amount of people who now tag him as “the next Jacques Villeneuve”?

      Winning back to back titles make some people believe that 5 more is not that hard, but I just don’t buy it.

  10. Jolene (@jojof1) said on 11th October 2011, 4:43

    I am a huge fan of Lewis. No conspiracy theory here but he doesn’t seem happy anymore. He has the look of someone who is defeated and I don’t like it one bit. I think all the media criticism has had a profound effect on him. He needs to knuckle down and get on with doing what he loves, or used to love, driving an F1 car. Something is wrong at Mclaren. Whatever it is Lewis needs to fix it, as he has nowhere else to go for 2012. I will never loose faith in him. He still has the talent, he just needs to believe it again,

    • Bigbadderboom (@bigbadderboom) said on 11th October 2011, 11:09

      @jolene As a fellow supporter of Ham it is difficult viewing at the moment, and now reading this independent article it seems has now developed a bck against the wall attitude, where he cannot accept crtisism or advice but cannot offer any answers to his own lack of form. Too much too young?, that argument holds no water because Vettel seems to relish in the attention. Lack of humility? Perhaps he simply cannot accept his own shortcomings. Personally i think that F1 of recent years simply doesn’t suit him, race craft and race management are key to race pace and Lewis’s balls out approach is simply getting him to too much trouble, burning his tyres out too quickly and making rash decisions. I think he needs a mentor to help him through these difficult times.

      • Some really good and insightful comments here I have to say. Best F1 blog by quite some margin I’m sure many would agree (including Keith I would imagine : )

        I too am a big Hamilton fan. However I actually am enjoying seeing him experiencing his current trials and tribulations and here’s why. In all honesty, I think it’s exactly what he needs.

        Others have already described how he burst onto the scene in ’07, winning the championship at the second attempt and everything seemed to be, well, going just according to Lewis’ plan. Because of this though, I can’t help but get the impression that he had built up a certain sense of entitlement with regards to his success in F1, and that includes wining further championships. It’s almost as if he’s lived his F1 career to date backwards.

        So from that perspective I think what Lewis is experiencing now will form the foundation for a renewed determination and mindset in that he now has to go out and prove all over again that he is indeed who everybody, including himself, said he ways. Namely, the fastest most talented driver of his generation. If he is to succeed, there will be no place for feelings of entitlement or complacency or anything else. this is why I think the lessons he is learning now will provide the impetus he needs to regroup and recalibrate his efforts in once again becoming the driver we all know he can be.

      • Jolene (@jojof1) said on 12th October 2011, 10:26

        @bigbadderboom Agreed. Its really painful watching F1 at the moment. My nerves are completely shot before the lights go out, hoping and praying that I dont have to witness another incident.

        I do think Lewis needs his father back. Anthony had a very calming and disciplined influence on him. I just find it ironic that when he used to be in the garage 24/7, many had an issue with that as well. I also dont understand why he is not supporting his son in a non management role.

        Hopefully Lewis gets his head in the right place. I will support him win or loose, because the guy is simply spectacular to watch, not many will deny that.

  11. Lord Ha Ha said on 11th October 2011, 5:25

    They call Obama, the President of the United States (POTUS) by another name these days (TOTUS), after his teleprompter. Hamilton’s one is operating at just about the same standard.

    Like Casey Stoner said to Valentino Rossi, “you just ran out of talent”. I take no particular pleasure in attributing that in Hamilton’s case, but it is up to him to get back. Last year I thought he grew up some after the Melbourne incident. This year he regressed, but now he has a driving acumen problem to accompany his condition.

    • vho (@) said on 11th October 2011, 5:41

      Like Casey Stoner said to Valentino Rossi, “you just ran out of talent”.

      Yeah, I thought that was a deserving comment from Stoner. I used to like Rossi but after that incident my respect for Rossi is somewhat tainted. What was worse for Casey was that the marshalls helped Rossi get back on his bike and continue the race and just left Stoner standing there. And Lewis lying in Melbourne was just not on.

  12. dcjohnson (@dcjohnson) said on 11th October 2011, 5:53

    I surprised no one picks up webber and hamilton have both regressed due to the tyres this year. Everyone excepts webber is a quick driver, but obviously he is cooking his tyres in comparison to vettel. Webber was fourth, a puncture and a bash ahead of hamilton and there is no fuss ? The new tyres and drs have played into the hands of the less aggresive drivers, and japan is a track that cooks tyres, still think webber and hamilton are fundementally faster, i.e. with no tyre performance drop off, but we have a different set of rules these days…

    • davidwhite (@davidwhite) said on 11th October 2011, 7:41

      I agree. There are definitely soms shinanigans going on in the Lewis camp but if the performance was there on the track i don’t think it would affect him that much.

      Hamilton has still blitzed Button in qualifying this year, but not in the race. Bad luck/self-caused accidents have a part to play in this but not all – and the key difference i’ve seen this year is the smaller difference in race pace between Button and Hamilton. Tyres are the main reason.

  13. davidwhite (@davidwhite) said on 11th October 2011, 8:03

    Just on the Hamilton reference to his race speed, if you read Martin Whitmarsh’s comments after the race it sounds as though they were playing around at the pitstops with the downforce levels on the front wing. Hamilton himself radioed in after the safety car complaining about understeer.

    This would explain his lack of race pace after the first set of pit stops.

  14. SempreGilles (@sempregilles) said on 11th October 2011, 8:22

    I don’t think Hamilton has a distraction that keeps him from showing what he can. He just needs some time off, or a (couple of) good result(s). I bet that next year he’ll be the same driver we know from previous seasons.

  15. Xenon2 (@xenon2) said on 11th October 2011, 9:04

    Lewis ran more rear wing in qualifying but missed his lap so he had to start on an over-used set of soft tyres. McLaren have tended to split their strategies this year, trying to get either Lewis or Jenson in front of Vettel at the start. It is possible Hamilton was light on fuel and had to do a lot of fuel saving in the final stint.

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