Paddock Life – Shanghai edition – Lewis Hamilton: “I’m not here to make friends. I’m here to be successful, to win the world championship and enjoy my career in Formula One along the way.
[Alonso] was a double world champion. He came to a team and got beat by a rookie. I’m not here to be involved in any mind games. I’m here as strong as ever. I put my hands up and admitted I made a mistake at Fuji.
I have apologised to the team and now we move forward together. I have no need to play mind games with anyone. I’m here to do a good job and be competitive. The most important thing is to focus on my job. To be challenging for the world championship again is pretty cool in only my second year.” (Thanks Becken for the link)
Little Britain has it in for Lew and Andy – “What would we do if Hamilton or Murray actually won the F1 title or Wimbledon? We’d probably send them out on the back of a lorry through Trafalgar Square, just like our Olympians, but pelt them with rotten fruit along the way.” Des Kelly argues that British sports fans find it hard to celebrate their successful countrymen. After the gut-wrenching fawning over the Olympics team I can’t agree with him.
James Allen’s Grand Prix Diary – I didn’t realise James Allen had a blog…
Italy mourns Massas dwindling title dream “Tuttosport also agrees that Massa’s gloom after Shanghai was justified. ‘Massa is not the kind of driver to write an unforgettable chapter in Formula One history, but he is an intelligent guy. He knows that this was his biggest chance to realise his dream of the title.'”
Lingering fear that Hamilton is a mere passenger on drive toward greatness – “There will always be a testing ground of difficult conditions and new pressure, but if Hamilton’s progress has been spectacular, how much of it has truly been due to the superiority of his driving rather than the preparation of his car? In the last few days, Hamilton’s critics in the drivers’ room have been categorised as a gang seething with envy of a young man who has, maybe, failed to show much of an appreciation of his own good luck. Almost certainly there is something to this, but then Stewart’s assessment was scarcely shaped by the perspective of personal disappointment, not from the high plateau of three world titles in five years.
“There is also, but perhaps we should just whisper this, a theory in some areas of the pit lane that Hamilton’s talent would not necessarily sweep away that of such as Robert Kubica and Nico Rosberg if Mosley and the credit crunch just happened to impose the idea of standard equipment.”
17 comments on “Links: Hamilton reacts to Alonso”
21st October 2008, 22:22
James Lawton should stick to what he knows, football. As qualifying proves the cars in the top 10 are extremely closely matched, thousandths of seconds separate them in fact. To suggest, as Lawton does, that there is a suspicion he wouldnt match Kubica or Rosberg in identical equipment bears no scrutiny when you consider Lewis matched Alonso (the best pound for pound driver in f1) in his debut season and hes wiped the floor with the previously rated Kovalinen.
To then suggest the tedious Shanghai Grand Prix victory was as a result of his cars huge superiority ignores the fact that it was his first win in 7. Lawton has made the classic mistake of taking an isolated incident to try and prove an overarching point. Surely thats the turf of the ragtops, not respected broadsheet veterans?
21st October 2008, 22:37
Interesting article from James Lawton. Who is this guy?
But there are two Ferrari guys who has “rate Lewis highly” on the last days:
Rob Smedley (Massa´s race engineer:
21st October 2008, 22:50
Agreed antonyob, James Lawton’s article is far too simplistic & fails to take in the season as a whole.
Ferrari & McLaren are constantly fighting for an advantage over each other & the different handling characteristics make the cars better at some tracks than others.
I’m still not convinced of Lewis’s greatness, he’s good but still needs another 5 years to be great, but even I would concede he’s had some impressive drives in F1. He’s as deserving of the title as Massa this season.
Alonso is probably the best driver in F1 at the moment (much as I hate admitting it) and Lewis didn’t have any problem keeping up or beating him last season, he’s also outclassed Kovi this season.
21st October 2008, 23:06
Theres a misconception that people make of Hamilton fans, they/we very rarely say hes great, they say he has done fantastically and he has huge potential. No one is great after 2 years near the top and having not won the biggest prize.
But its the detractors i think that get it so very wrong. In an attempt to achieve some sort of perceived balance, they deliberately under play Lewis’ achievements -writing them off to the car, to luck, to his sponsorship by the team from age 12. All of course have an impact, they would on my ability in a Mclaren, but to say he is otherwise unremarkable is just plain wrong. Too many judges, much better than me or any journalist, rate him too highly for him not to have that extra bit that separates the best from the pack. We will see if that bit is enough to make him great.
22nd October 2008, 0:04
I see James Allan’s blog gets nowhere near as many comments as this one does. Most of his posts have none at all!
22nd October 2008, 2:25
This is not maybe right place for this news but could not find any better place lol.
McLaren has told to MTV3 channel that they put tyres of Heikki Kovalainen in wrong way because they was marked wrong. Tyres are marked in which way they roll but in China Heikkis tyres was put in other way so they was”rolling” in wrong way.
This is best what i ever have heard in F1 world. lol. poor Heikki.
22nd October 2008, 8:01
yip a rookie beat a two time world champion last year,but would that have been the case if one was’nt favoured over the other
22nd October 2008, 8:49
Hammy isn’t the only driver this year who has been nurtured from an early age, surely. Any of the drivers who started in karting have had the interest and the pressure and the backing of family and sponsors to succeed.
We only know of Hammy’s good fortune because he/his family/McLaren have told us about it. Weren’t both Schumachers just as lucky?
And what about the drivers who are sons of earlier drivers – Rosberg and Piquet come to mind – surely they have the skills and the financial support just as much as Hammy this year – Piquet Sr runs a racing team in GP2 after all.
We are were we are this year with the drivers mostly out of good fortune, but I am looking forward just as much to seeing Bruno Senna, the Mansell brothers and Damon Hill’s son competing in F1 in the future, and even Schuey 3 in years to come! Does Alonso have any children?
22nd October 2008, 10:07
kimi came right out of the boonies! :P
22nd October 2008, 11:12
Why does everyone assume that lineage makes the slightest difference to competence in a racing car ? Why all the fuss over new young drivers who just happen to carry the names of their famous fathers ?
The sons and daughters of all great men and women in science, the arts, literature, engineering and F1 motor racing have as much or as little chance of greatness as the rest of us. To be sure, there will occasionally be famous-in-their-own-right sons of famous fathers but genetics dictates that such will always be very rare.
I give you Michael Schumacher, Fernando Alonso, Lewis Hamilton, Jackie Stewart, Jim Clarke, Juan Fangio etc, etc…. no lineage in any of them !
Please discuss at your leisure folks……
22nd October 2008, 11:19
nice one Leon. completely wrong, but contentious at least.
Inheritance of genes means that children of successful sportsmen have a greater probability that they will also have that, or a talent. We are considerably more like our parents than we are our neighbours. Genetic variance does of course throw up many sportsmen with no lineage but you’ll nearly always find something like an uncle who played rugby league to a decent standard.
To be at the top end of sport you need luck, timing and an obsessive mentality but first of all you need decent hand eye coordination and thats inherited or it isnt.
22nd October 2008, 12:01
I somewhat agree with Leon. A famous father might help in providing the necessary push to get there. But staying there and reaching great heights is a different story altogether.
22nd October 2008, 12:04
I thought that I would throw it in since I have noticed that the more successful drivers (or some of them at least), do have a background either in motorsport or in an automotive family.
For example, although Jackie Stewart didn’t have lineage, his father owned a garage so he knew lots about how cars work, and since the 50s and 60s, (in Britain anyway) you can see how the families continue over the generations, from the Hills to the Mansells, very much like the families who dominate equestrian events.
My point really was that Hammy cannot be seen in isolation as the only driver on the grid who has had all the luck to be there…..
22nd October 2008, 12:06
We’d better be a bit careful about pursuing this Inherited Characteristics thread. Keith will ‘descend upon they that carry off such argument as is not germane to our cause’…… sorry Keith !
But Prof Steve Jones summed up our debate better than most..’in genetics it all comes down to the mathematics allied to the random. Anyone who believes it’s ever a straight line of inherited characteristics is destined for the mad house….’
I rest my case.
22nd October 2008, 12:12
i didnt suggest it was a straight line Leon. I said the probability is greater and it is. It has to be, just as if both my parents were albinos (they’re not!!!!) it would greatly increase my chances of being one – but it wouldnt necessarily mean i was one.
good point re Jackie Stewart DG – his brother Jimmy (RIP) was a successful driver in his own right, Jackie even maintains he was possibly as good as him. Now if it was just chance the probabilities sky rocket that you get lucky twice in one family.
In football all the Rooney boys had trials at Pro clubs – ie they wree all much better than the norm- of course only in one did the inherited genes mean he was top top level.
To be honest if you speak to the medical profession (and im married to one) there really isnt any debate- you inherit characteristics. full stop.
22nd October 2008, 15:02
Hamilton’s response was predictable and quite refreshing for its frankness. Everything he said is true, as long as he keeps it in perspective, that Alonso was last years threat, not this year. The mind games, whether Hamilton wants to play them or not, will get worse as the Brazil showdown builds up.
Damon Hill is right, mind games are all part of ‘any sport’, and Alonso, as with Schumacher before him, knows how to play them. Hamilton has to prove to the world that he can overcome this, and sometimes keeping things to yourself is often the best policy. When Lewis is champion, then he should make these comments, but to do it now, shows that the mind games have worked on him.
Its a dangerous game to play, especially when you have the most to lose.
23rd October 2008, 9:55
Lewis has already won almost everything he has raced in with standard engines including GP2 and beat whoever he happens to be racing. We know some teams are better than others and that is part of F1. But you cant take away his talent and just say its his car. Its like the idiots that think schumacher was nothing special but lucky with his cars. Their is an element of luck but if you look at top guys they always stuff their team mates in the same equipment, even Alonso could not stamp his authority over Lewis because Lewis is very talented. Even Schumacher commented on that very point and admits he is very impressed with Lewis. Standard engines sucks and will ruin the whole ethos of the sport.
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