Qualifying problems now ‘beyond bad luck’ – Hamilton

2014 Hungarian Grand Prix

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Hungaroring, 2014A frustrated Lewis Hamilton says he feels his misfortune with mechanical failures is now getting to a point where ‘it is beyond bad luck’.

Hamilton had not even completed his first timed lap of qualifying today when his Mercedes engine was engulfed in a fire that forced him to stop at the entry of pit lane.

The suspected fuel leak doomed him to start on the back row of the grid for the second consecutive race as team mate and rival Nico Rosberg took another pole position.

“I think it is getting to the point where it is beyond bad luck,” said Hamilton, who will start no higher than 21st tomorrow.

“I bailed out of that timed lap that I was doing and was going to do another timed lap and then something happened to my brakes. Something in the system failed. I had to engage some systems and then the engine just died.

“I was right next to the pit lane entry so I thought I could roll back but then I looked in the mirror and realised I was on fire. I was still trying to get to the garage. I thought we could still do something, then they said ‘stop, stop, stop’. It’s all pretty bad.”

Hungary marks the latest in a run of problems for Hamilton in qualifying, including two consecutive mechanical failures. Despite coming through the field to third after starting from the back last weekend in Germany, Hamilton is less optimistic about his chances tomorrow.

“I honestly don’t know what I can do tomorrow,” Hamilton admitted.

“This is a track that you cannot overtake on so I think I will struggle to get in the top ten tomorrow or at least the top five. I will probably leave here more than 20 points behind Nico, but there are still races to go. I don’t know what to say, I will try my best.”

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228 comments on Qualifying problems now ‘beyond bad luck’ – Hamilton

  1. Dan said on 26th July 2014, 15:41

    Work this out KPCart says Vet proved he is best for years now(best car), yet Ham is suddenly lucky to have best car, lol KP atleast Ham as not been outperformed EVER over a period of time like Vet was this year. How embarassing for a 4XWC, Ham the 1 WC never been made luck silly even in 2011.

    • Dan said on 26th July 2014, 15:44

      To add to that he must be most greedy fan ever he as watched his fav mop titles up when he is avg and is now saying Ham don’t deserve it. Should we move Vet to Merc just for you?. Obviously Vet not avg but what 4WC do we know ever struggled like he did vs a new teammate, also Vet is one of most disrespected WC ever i would say, says it all that Ham is held in higher regard by most drivers.

      • Eric (@) said on 26th July 2014, 15:51

        Alonso is not most drivers.

        Webber, yes Webber, holds Vettel in higher regard than Hamilton. He said that Vettel and Alonso are the best on the grid. And a lot of journo’s and drivers agree with him. Maybe they consider Hamilton to be a better person off track. Vettel was ranked higher than Hamilton (and Alonso) by Murray Walker as well

        As for the pitiful dig at Vettel being beaten by his teammate,… Really? Is that what you’re going with after 2011?! You must have some serious memory problems. Button trounced Hamilton in almost every aspect that year. The same Button most people don’t consider to be that great.
        Besides that Ricciardo is doing a tremendous job but he’s not beating Vettel as extensively as Button was beating Hamilton in 2011.

        • Dan said on 26th July 2014, 17:31

          @baron-2, eh what 3 wins vs 3 wins, Button is a WC. Yet surely if Vet has 4 he is the best by a long way right? Guess not. How embarrassing for a 4XWC to get embarrased as that ever happen’d before, were a multiple champion not past his peak gets beat?

          All Hamilton’s mistakes were him crashing into Massa, check qualifying stats, Hamilton beat Button he was his own downfall came back in 2012 with best car got 7 poles, were his teammate got his first pole and only pole yet car let himdown big time.

          Vet did not even want a good driver he admitted that himself

          • David-A (@david-a) said on 26th July 2014, 19:24

            Vet did not even want a good driver he admitted that himself

            So the best you can do is post false claims and have a random tirade at a driver @kpcart doesn’t support, and a driver who has nothing to do with the championship battle at the moment?

          • Eric (@) said on 27th July 2014, 11:29

            Vet did not even want a good driver he admitted that himself

            Source please.

        • Dan said on 26th July 2014, 17:38

          Well Ham creamed But in qualifying, unlike Seb(supposed qually king) and kept crashing into Massa, and it was Ham’s fault he was having so many issues passing. Yet he came back in 12 and dominated But, don’t let 2 point gap fool you. Hamilton even lapped him in Canada with no problem for Button.

          Please tell me who as shown more vs Teammates? Hamilton has had far stronger rivals, 2 WC. He is even doing well this year with all the bad luck. I just would never expect a 4xwc to struggle like he did says alot to me and im sure Alonso agrees he said it best himself last year.

          Great lap by Vet but again the 4xWC done what looked an unreal lap is 0.179 ahead so not huge really when Vet as looked great in Hungary i thought he would beat him by more being the multiple champion he is.

          • Colossal Squid (@colossal-squid) said on 26th July 2014, 17:55

            “Well Ham creamed But in qualifying, unlike Seb(supposed qually king) and kept crashing into Massa”

            Didn’t Vettel get 15 poles in 2011? How is that not creaming Webber?

          • Eric (@) said on 26th July 2014, 19:11

            Dude, you really need to put that hash pipe down. It’s clearly affecting your brain.

      • kpcart said on 26th July 2014, 16:38

        Dan, what and what??? vettel is not even my favourite driver!! I prefer Kubica and Alonso. do you realise Jenson Button, a driver a lot of people do not consider top 3 in the sport score more points then Hamilton when they were teammates. do you realise Hamiton blew 2 championships (2007 and 2010), and nearly 2008. his team blew 2012. Vettel NEVER blew a championship.

        • matt90 (@matt90) said on 26th July 2014, 17:05

          Yes, shame on Hamilton for losing his debut year, and for making as many or fewer mistakes as Button, Webber, Alonso and even Vettel in 2010.

        • Dan said on 26th July 2014, 17:23

          lol well don’t ever comment my friend how bad Ham is, the rookie made Alo grass on his team. Ham was on Alo pace from first race and you know it. And no Ham did not choke away 08 he drove out of his skin in an inferiour car to Massa. 07 he had a 17 point lead with 2 races to go his team played smart, Hamilton was making people look silly in China before retiring in pit, then in Bra his car fails him so know he did he choke?.

          2012 as you said let him down, he should be a multiple WC. And you are a Vet fan i have seen you’re constant hyping even when he was getting beat by Ric it was embarrasing.

  2. IgMi said on 26th July 2014, 15:43

    Don’t point fingers, don’t whine, chin up, do your best, and you gonna keep winning me as a fan. Good luck tomorrow! (This is from a Kimi fan.)

    • Dean Reynolds said on 26th July 2014, 17:15

      Yes…. cause THATS what keeps Lewis awake at night. Wanting to win u over! Show me a good looser and I’ll show you alooser. Winning is all that matters to him which is why he has so many fans AND detractors.

      • Mcquiz (@mcquiz) said on 26th July 2014, 17:47

        He has so many fans because he is British, that’s about it.

      • IgMi said on 26th July 2014, 19:23

        I look at a driver as a complete person, not just a ruthless competitor there to win no matter what. I always despised the saying that being second is being the first looser. That is just ridiculous. I don’t expect people with that attitude to retain many long term friends, have many happy memories, and to be happy in general. As long as one remember his roots, give his best (and Hamilton’s best is quite good), looses with dignity, and wins with grace I will always use him as a reference to kids on how to live a life.

        I don’t know what drives Hamilton, what matters to him, and why people love him or do not love him, so I cannot comment on that.

  3. David (@neiana) said on 26th July 2014, 15:48

    From 2009, Lewis Hamilton has retired from (or been DQ) out of 3 races per year… except 2012 where he retired five times and 2013 where he retired once.

    McLaren averages were high.
    Mercedes average is rather low.

    Nico Rosberg, from 2010 at Mercedes, has retired either two times a season or three times per season. His average at Williams was quite poor.

    Schumacher’s Mercedes record of retirements is quite massive, however.

    Of course I am too lazy to pick through whether the retirements were mechanical or otherwise and this also does not account for failures during qualifying. However, it still shows that, on race day, Hamilton’s luck is no better or worse than his own luck in previous years and it is far superior to the “luck” of Shumacher in the same team.

    • Eric (@) said on 26th July 2014, 15:53


      Nice statistics, but I’m afraid the fanatic Hamilton supporters will ignore this completely.
      Just like the facts about the Red Bull reliability over the past couple of years between Vettel and Webber.
      They just need an excuse to use at the end of the season if Hamilton looses the championship.

    • William Stuart (@williamstuart) said on 26th July 2014, 15:54

      Schumacher was never challenging for wins let alone a championship, so there wasn’t the same attention from the German media/British media or pressure on Michael or Rosberg.

      • William Stuart (@williamstuart) said on 26th July 2014, 15:55

        However, remember that the Mercedes team is pretty much entirely English, only some of the funding comes from Mercedes. Anyway, all we need is far more reliability issues from Rosberg to shut us all up.

  4. Klon (@klon) said on 26th July 2014, 15:53

    Well, actually I think he got something there. This is hardly a new issue. I mean, the Schumacher issues were mentioned before and we must remember that this used to the Brawn team, i.e. the one which incompetence costed Barrichello a world championship (seriously, look at all their technical problems and errors that year on Barrichello’s side, that adds up to around 20-something points (under the old system) lost).

    I am afraid that, whilst there is most certainly no conspiracy – Hanlon’s razor lives – there is a certain lack of competence at the Mercedes team. Obviously that doesn’t really apply if it is the former crew of Barrichello that is taking care of Rosberg now.

    Even with all of that, though, Hamilton can’t go around saying stuff like that. It just destroys motivation and will help Rosberg all the more. This is now a mental game and I’m afraid Hamilton is losing badly.

    • Tifoso1989 (@tifoso1989) said on 26th July 2014, 16:12

      If you mean that Ross Brawn is incompetent, just read my post below. As for Barichello, he has never been a championship winning material because ,apart from 2009 (the year in which Jenson who is not the fastest driver in F1) become world champion, he drove also the same cars in which Shumacher (best wishes) won 5 WDC in Ferrari.

    • Bullfrog (@bullfrog) said on 26th July 2014, 16:17

      On the other hand, it’s the kind of outspoken comment Niki Lauda might approve of…but I agree it’s not very constructive.

      There has been an alarming number of Mercedes car failures recently – and Valtteri Bottas must be hoping tomorrow is his big day, with one Merc looking out of contention for the win, and every chance something will happen to the other one.

    • matt90 (@matt90) said on 26th July 2014, 16:35


      There’s an analysis of 2009 which has Button and Barrichello equal on points. However, it forgets that Button was not at all at fault for his retirement in Spa (so would have almost certainly picked up a handful of points) and that it was his own (and his engineer’s) decision to try out a 2-stop in Spain, meaning that he really did win that race on merit. Button was better, and would have likely won the championship ahead of his team mate and the Red Bulls had all luck been equal.

      • Klon (@klon) said on 26th July 2014, 17:09

        @matt90, that is true. Spain and Spa have been discounted for Button. Then again, he also forgot about the fuel rig issue Rubens had in Germany (admittedly that would’ve only meant one or two points on Button given how bad Barrichello’s pace was in the later part of the race) as well as the gearbox change Barrichello had in Singapore. In the end stuff like the fact that Barrichello outqualified Button and just generally drove better in the second half of the year, makes me (as someone who admits he is a Barrichello fanboy through and through) very sceptical about that claim of yours.

  5. Tifoso1989 (@tifoso1989) said on 26th July 2014, 16:05

    Apart from the conspiracy theory which i’m a big fan BTW, i think reliability in F1 isn’t down to luck in my opinion. For example the chance of both Ferrari’s finishing the race in the 90’s was 25%, after only six months to the recruitment of Ross Brawn who changed all the quality control procedures in the team, the percentage increased to 90%. Ferrari since then and for obvious reasons (it is not good to see a Ferrari engine blow) have always made reliability a priority, other teams like RBR and now Mercedes they actually don’t care too much about reliability, they take the aggressive path when designing a F1 car in order to extract the maximum performance out of it and then they try to resolve the reliability problems given the fact that the regulations allow changes to engine/PU for reliability purposes.
    The W05 proved to be unreliable and the 2 drivers suffered from reliability issues whether it was practice, qualifying or race. As for Hamilton suffering more failures than Nico, i don’t think that it has something to do with his driving style because if it was the case, it would have been obvious throughout the telemetry and as a consequence he would have to adapt .
    The 2014 cars are very complex, just like airplanes, due to the new hybrid system and a simple error that was negligible in the past is sufficient to trigger a chain reaction that will cause a car failure. I think and i hope that Mercedes will investigate more on both cars to determine what is causing these continuous failures which are different (gearbox,engine,brakes) because i want to see real fight for the WDC between Lewis and Nico in the second part of the season which includes thrilling battles (à la Bahrain).

    • PeterG said on 26th July 2014, 16:23

      Ferrari’s reliability had improved before Ross Brawn joined the team.

      Many of there problems in that era were due to the V12 engines which were prone to overheating & also put additional strain on the gearbox.
      For 1996 they switched to a V10 & after some reliability problems early on with the new engines, They had it figured out over the 2nd half of the year & had much better reliability.

    • matt90 (@matt90) said on 26th July 2014, 16:38

      Reliability from one team to another is in a large part down to how well each team does its job. But reliability within a team- between team mates- really is just luck unless one driver is doing something which particularly stresses the car.

  6. Paul2013 said on 26th July 2014, 16:07

    Hamilton is ridiculous! No further comments.

  7. It could be worse Lewis, you could be Pastor Maldonado.

  8. Schmorbraten (@schmorbraten) said on 26th July 2014, 16:13

    Could someone please tell Hamilton he doesn’t belong in adult motorsport if, after realising he was on fire, he still thought about getting the car back to the garage? Endangering the whole pitlane just because he could maybe gain something?

  9. PeterG said on 26th July 2014, 16:18

    As I said in the other topic, Why would Mercedes bother to work hard to convince Lewis to move to there team, Paying him a significant amount of money in the process, Go through 2013 working hard to make the car better suited to Lewis only to then mess with the car to ensure Nico gets an advantage?

    And on the ‘German team wants a German champion’ comments. The team are based in the UK, The cars & engines are designed & built in the UK & Most of the mechanics & engineer’s are British. Its a British team in all but name.

    In response to someone suggesting incompetence from his mechanics…..
    If it was the same issue every time then perhaps that would be the case, However its been totally different things that have failed caused by totally different things each time.

    Melbourne was simply bad luck, A rubber seal around the spark plug split.
    Montreal was more down to Lewis not managing the ERS problem as well as Nico so you could actually argue that Lewis contributed to his retirement.
    The German brake failure was in part due to Lewis going with Brembo, Nico had suffered a similar Brembo brake failure in the Silverstone test which was a part of why he went for the carbon industry brakes.

    Today who knows what the root cause of the failure was.

    • Adam Hardwick (@fluxsource) said on 26th July 2014, 19:18

      The idea that his driving style or management of the problem contributed to the brake failure is purely a spectator generated one. No one who actually has information on the subject has ever suggested that cause. Such speculation doesn’t really have a place in a proper discussion.

      In addition, how was Hamilton supposed to predict that Rosberg’s brake failure incident was going to repeat itself? Tose kinds of things are usually one off, unpredictable events.

  10. Colossal Squid (@colossal-squid) said on 26th July 2014, 16:20

    It is beyond bad luck. Not in the sense that there is some massive conspiracy against Hamilton, anyone who suggests anything like that needs to come back to reality.

    No, it is beyond bad luck in that Mercedes have built the quickest car on the grid, but they have not built the most reliable one. This has affected both drivers at different stages of the season, and as we saw in Canada, it is possible for both cars to develop serious faults at the same time when they are being pushed to the limit. If Hamilton’s run of failures has shown us anything, it’s that there is no guarantee that either Mercedes car will get to the finish line tomorrow. Hamilton may be suffering now but I am sure Rosberg will be hit by more costly reliability problems in the future.

    The Championship is far from over, and a silver lining for Hamilton must be that his unreliability in the last two weekends have come on a Saturday. He can and will score points tomorrow, whereas should the car have failed on a Sunday he would leave with nothing.

    • This is actually the most sane comment that’s been made regarding reliability for the silver arrows.

      Unfortunately they seem to hit Lewis hardest.

      If like to think that Lewis is stating that someone is basically making a mistake. Regardless of intention.

      Lewis probably has to look at the situation as having a silver lining the way you stated it. Unfortunately for him, even if he were to fight for and get to 2nd. He’s putting his PU through a lot more stress then Nico is and now two weeks in a row that is the case. Regardless of the fact that he’s going to have now his 4th PU have to be put in, he’s more then likely going to have grid drops for new PU’s very shortly.

      I hope it’s at least a close fight to the end. Unfortunately I predict Hamilton will crash out of tomorrow’s race trying to get to the front.

    • Damonw said on 26th July 2014, 20:16

      Do you really believe they both suffered the same problem at the exact same time? I don’t for one minute, something very fishy is going on in that team!

  11. Jackal said on 26th July 2014, 16:41

    Tough luck is a part of racing. Vettel’s results have been affected by bad luck also … at least Lewis has the best car on the grid. He simply has to put his head down and get the most out of the situation that he can (as he did in Britain). This conspiracy nonsense is utterly ridiculous.

  12. It sounds as if Lewis will need both a new gearbox & transmission.
    are the penalties for this cumulative (5 +10)?
    do they carry over to the next race?

  13. tmax (@tmax) said on 26th July 2014, 17:15

    Ron this is the perfect opportunity.. Just like Niki approached Lewis when he got out of the car after the SGP GP 2012 car failure, Ron should approach Lewis now. He is fragile now. He has not signed the new contract with Mercedes !!!! Go for it Ron….. Go Go Go…. bring your boy back home !!!!!!!

    Same with Fernando. It is the 33rd time he has qualified 5th…..

    Lets see some fun… Get Fernando back… we want to see the mature Fernado & Lewis race in a Mclaren Honda under Ron Dennis bringing back the memories of the 1988 McLaren Honda !!!!!!

    • ispano said on 26th July 2014, 19:40

      I would not mind Alonso or Hamilton at the wheel of Mclaren Honda. honestly, would really like to see Button do well with Mclaren Honda.

    • Corrado (@corrado-dub) said on 26th July 2014, 20:42

      You’re kidding, right ? Maybe HAM wouldn’t mind going back to McLaren alongside ALO, but I don’t think ALO would do that at all. We’ve had that Senna-Prost “taste” already in 2007, ALO did not like the outcome, plus he’s too eager to have at least another WDC in his bag, so a less competitive driver is obviously better news for ALO. Last thing, McLaren has been worse than Ferrari starting with 2013 (even now in 2014 when they have the best engine by far), so going back to McLaren looks like a big gamble.

  14. Jason (@jason12) said on 26th July 2014, 17:56

    Some F1 fans though, talk about kicking a man when he’s down.

    Fortunately the season is still very long.

  15. FERNANDO123 (@fernando123) said on 26th July 2014, 18:31

    This HAM is cooked and ready to eat
    (by rosberg) ;)

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