2012 Japanese Grand Prix
Lewis Hamilton says he’s ready for a fight for victory in Japan after his championship chances were several damaged by his Singapore retirement.
“In terms of the championship, there?óÔé¼Ôäós nothing to really be gained by analysing the points tables, from now on, it?óÔé¼Ôäós simply gloves-off.” said Hamilton.
“As in Singapore, I?óÔé¼Ôäóll come out fighting, I?óÔé¼Ôäóll just be hoping for a better result next weekend.”
Hamilton said he’s exciting to be returning to Suzuka, a track he hasn’t won at before: “When I first raced here in 2009, I couldn?óÔé¼Ôäót believe a place like this could still exist in Formula 1 ?óÔé¼ÔÇ£ it still feels like a proper old-school circuit. It doesn?óÔé¼Ôäót have the polish or finesse of an ultra-modern track ?óÔé¼ÔÇ£ but is all the better for it.
?óÔé¼?ôIt?óÔé¼Ôäós fantastically quick, too, and very difficult to master. It?óÔé¼Ôäós an unforgiving place, and it also has that special atmosphere that you only get in Japan, for some reason.
?óÔé¼?ôI think that?óÔé¼Ôäós due to the fans ?óÔé¼ÔÇ£ they?óÔé¼Ôäóre what make any visit to a racetrack in Japan feel so special. They?óÔé¼Ôäóre very passionate about Formula 1, but also extremely polite and friendly ?óÔé¼ÔÇ£ they make you feel very special every day when you?óÔé¼Ôäóre going in and out of the circuit.”
Team mate Jenson Button has a special fondness for Japan: “All of my grand prix wins have felt special, but winning at Suzuka in 2011, at the first grand prix held in Japan since the terrible tsunami last March, was an achievement that still makes me feel incredibly proud and emotional.
“As everybody knows, Japan means a lot to me. It?óÔé¼Ôäós a place I love, I?óÔé¼Ôäóve been here so many times ?óÔé¼ÔÇ£ for business and pleasure ?óÔé¼ÔÇ£ and I still feel that wide-eyed awe and deep emotion for a country that exists so comfortably on so many different levels.
“Suzuka is definitely a circuit that puts hair on your chest. It?óÔé¼Ôäós extremely uncompromising; like a street circuit, it doesn?óÔé¼Ôäót allow for a single mistake, punishing you for putting a wheel wrong at almost every point on the circuit.
“But it?óÔé¼Ôäós also extremely quick ?óÔé¼ÔÇ£ there?óÔé¼Ôäós only one line through the esses that make up the whole first section; the Degner corners are blind, hidden in dips in the track, and approached over bumps that jolt the car, trying to unbalance it. Successfully hitting the apex for Degner 1 is a bit like trying to thread a needle while running the 100 metres ?óÔé¼ÔÇ£ difficult!”
2012 Japanese Grand Prix
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Image ?é?® McLaren/Hoch Zwei