Lewis Hamilton Q&A: Now it’s really getting interesting
Lewis Hamilton was visibly overwhelmed at adding the famous Italian track of Monza to his list of winning circuits on Sunday. McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh had said earlier in the weekend that victory was the best way for Hamilton to establish his brand - and he took that victory in style…
Q: Lewis, it was a fantastic win from lights to flag. You must be very happy having won in Monza in such a style….
Lewis Hamilton: Yes, this is a race that I’ve always wanted to win. I have to give big thanks for the team - they did an incredible job. The car has been fantastic all weekend. It was very unfortunate for Jenson (Button) as we could have had a one-two victory, so hopefully we can execute this in Singapore. (laughs)
Q: Was it kind of boring for you, so far in the front?
LH: I could get used to this kind of boredom! But yes, it was really nice cruising. When I heard that Fernando (Alonso) got into second I asked myself, ‘How the hell did he get second?’ To be honest, it is nice to have a relaxed Grand Prix with no troubles so I am very grateful for that opportunity. It was more or less managing the gap to the guys behind me.
Q: Was that the kind of race a driver dreams about?
LH: Yes, once in a while. And it came at a good time.
Q: When Jenson retired did it come to your mind that the same might also happen to you?
LH: I was aware that Jenson retired due to a car issue, so I said to myself, ‘Please, I have 15 laps more to go - not me again.’ So I was not using any kerbs and just trying to nurse the car home -driving with love and
Q: This win also means a huge leap forward for you in the championship standing - as both Red Bulls didn’t score…
LH: …yes. Now it is getting really interesting. But still the championship is very unpredictable, very wide open. When many said that Silverstone would be the place to get an idea of who are the top candidates… wrong. We don’t know even now. I am so happy that we have a great car and that we are very fast - probably not the fastest, but I would say we are as fast as the fastest. (laughs)
Q: What does that win mean in terms of your future beyond 2012?
LH: I don’t focus on next year - I fully concentrate on 2012. I am taking it one race at a time and I want to take this team to the top and try to help them - as they are trying to help me - win both championships. This is an incredible team and I have a fantastic relationship with them.
Q: Did you expect such a result?
LH: Well, with Jenson’s win in Spa one week ago it was obvious that we have a great car and with that knowledge I thought that I’m doing it here! (laughs) Hey, this is Monza - one of the great historic circuits. To win here, that truly is another stepping stone in my career.
Q: Sailing on the tailwind of this win, what do you expect to happen in Singapore?
LH: That is difficult to say. Fernando (Alonso) just let the cat out of the bag and said that they’ve got lots of upgrades coming to the next race, so I am going back to the factory and hoping that the guys are doing the same - and I am sure it will be.