Q&A with McLarens Lewis Hamilton 13 Nov 2010
McLarens Lewis Hamilton may be 24 points adrift of standings' leader Fernando Alonso, but he could still win the drivers title in Abu Dhabi this weekend. To clinch his second championship, Hamilton needs to win Sundays race and his rivals need to run into trouble. Even in a sport where anything can - and does - happen, the British drivers chances look decidedly slim, but after Saturdays eventful qualifying session hes feeling optimistic
Q: Are you satisfied with P2 on the grid?
Lewis Hamilton: Yes, absolutely. This is my best qualifying performance for a long time. Ive got everything and more out of the car. I said before that I will give 120 percent and together with the guys we have got a good result. Jenson and I are pushing very hard to get second in the constructors championship, but of course I want to win the race.
Q: What happened between you and Ferraris Felipe Massa?
LH: It was nothing really. I was on an out lap and Felipe was on an out lap. And for some reason Felipe wanted to jump me, so he did his best to race me on the outside to make us collide but luckily I was able to escape it. I had a bit of damage on the car but otherwise it was not a big deal.
Q: You said that you would have to be aggressive this weekend
LH: Its very simple. I have nothing to lose and everything to gain. Its like a one-off race. In karting we have the world championship in one race and in a way you have that tomorrow. I simply know that I want to win the race and we want to get as many points as possible for the constructors championship. I dont have to worry about whos around me - they all have to worry about whos around them!
Q: What will be your strategy?
LH: I will take it flat out and push the pedal! Try to get an advantage into Turn One and take an opportunity there or later on the long straights.
Q: A win is within reach?
LH: Yes, definitely. And I will give it everything.
Q: So it is all about the start?
LH: Yes, its all about the start! The last time we were on the front row we won the race. That is quite a good omen.
Q: Did you know your best was so close to Sebastian Vettels pole position time?
LH: No, I didnt see it actually. The only thing I knew when I crossed the line is that it was a really good lap. I knew that we would be very close to the Red Bulls. The team have done a lot of hard work in the past couple of weeks. To be right behind them - splitting them - and with Fernando (Alonso) behind, is a really great achievement for us. We can take this forward and have a really great race tomorrow, especially as our long-run pace was quite strong on Friday.
Q: Did you expect to be so competitive?
LH: No, I hadnt expected to be that close. Looking at the championship my chances are the most unlikely, but then anything is still possible. It keeps you going. Jenson and I are going out there tomorrow to have a good laugh and enjoy racing.
Q: Who can win the title?
LH: We are not focusing on the drivers championship but want to secure second place in the constructors championship. It would be ideal to end this season with a one-two victory.
Q: So you dont feel too much pressure about the title?
LH: I dont think that this is an advantage in itself. It is always great to be in the lead and I definitely would trade with Fernando.
Q: Who is in the best position to win the championship?
LH: The one on pole position because he has the best chances to win the race. But also Fernando is in a good position.
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