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Hamilton lauds McLaren: the win is thanks to your efforts 30 Jul 2009

Lewis Hamilton and team principal Martin Whitmarsh address the McLaren team, McLaren Technology Centre, Woking, UK, 29 July 2009. © McLaren

Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren on the podium.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 10, Hungarian Grand Prix, Race, Budapest, Hungary, Sunday, 26 July 2009

From race winners to midfielders, and back again, McLaren’s changing fortunes have been well documented. But as the MP4-24 powered him to victory at last weekend’s Hungarian Grand Prix, Lewis Hamilton knew just who he had to thank for the turnaround.

And on Wednesday, the British driver did just that, paying tribute to the hard work of the team back at base in the United Kingdom. After attending the traditional post-Grand Prix debrief at the Woking factory, Lewis Hamilton addressed hundreds of team personnel to show his appreciation for their efforts in transforming his car.

“This has been an incredibly difficult season for all of us, but Sunday's result is payback for all your time, effort, energy and passion,” he said. “And I wanted to come here and thank you for that. At the start of the season, we were barely competitive, but the amount of work that every single one of you put into transforming our fortunes has been incredible.

“I've always said it: Vodafone McLaren Mercedes is a team of winners. And the most amazing thing about this team is its fighting spirit: you never give up. So when I get into the car, I know all the effort that has gone into getting us to this point, and it makes me want to push even harder to repay you. Winning on Sunday was our victory.

"The work that you've done this season has been incredible, I have never seen this place so intensely busy and productive. And the result in Hungary showed that there is definitely light at the end of the tunnel, and that makes the job easier and more satisfying for everyone. You have all been amazing and I hope you are as proud of this win as I am."

With their compulsory summer shutdown looming, the team will be rewarded with a two-week break, before they focus their attentions on August’s European Grand Prix.