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Lewis Hamilton Q&A: It’s the best F1 car I’ve ever driven 15 Jul 2010

Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren MP4/25.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 10, British Grand Prix, Qualifying Day, Silverstone, England, Saturday, 10 July 2010 Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 10, British Grand Prix, Practice Day, Silverstone, England, Friday, 9 July 2010 Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren MP4/25.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 10, British Grand Prix, Qualifying Day, Silverstone, England, Saturday, 10 July 2010 Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren MP4/25 on the podium. 
Formula One World Championship, Rd 10, British Grand Prix, Race, Silverstone, England, Sunday, 11 July 2010

Although McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton would have preferred to have won his home race at Silverstone last weekend, he’s well satisfied with his second-place finish. With the slightly quicker Red Bull leading the way and the British team’s well-documented blown diffuser issues, Hamilton is pleased he left the British round with a haul of 18 points and his lead in the drivers’ championship intact. He explains more in an interview with his official website…

Q: Another second place, and 86 points from a possible 100 in the last four races. It’s not going too badly, is it?
Lewis Hamilton:
Wow, 86 points from 100? That’s 86 per cent - I’d have loved those marks when I was at school! When you look at it like that, it does sound good, yeah, absolutely. I’ve said it before, but I think I’m able to get those kinds of results because our car is just so fantastic to drive. My car in 2008 was fantastic, but, even though we’re not quite as quick as the Red Bull, this year’s car is still the best Formula One car I’ve ever driven. You can just plant it, particularly through the high-speed stuff, and the car will just go where you tell it. And, as a driver, that gives you so much confidence, so you’re not worrying about the car, you’re just focusing on the racing. On Sunday at Silverstone, I just raced my heart out; I knew our car wasn’t as quick as Mark’s, but I just gave it all I had. I really enjoyed the race. And when you’re having fun out there, the results just come. So I’m just incredibly happy at the moment. Eighty six points out of 100 - I still can’t believe that!

Q: You said that you’d never seen crowds like it a Grand Prix before, just how unique was this year’s British race?
LH:
It was incredible, it really was. If you’ve only been to Silverstone, then maybe it’s hard to understand. Silverstone is just one of those places that really comes alive for the race, and the atmosphere was just intense. I absolutely loved it. I love it every year, but this year just felt more charged and more exciting than ever. Every day, I’d go out onto the pit wall just to wave at the fans, and I couldn’t believe how much support they were giving our team. Hopefully, they had a fantastic weekend - the weather was perfect, the racing was great, and we got a great result. Hopefully, next year, Jenson and I can come back and deliver a one-two - which I think would just blow the roof off the whole place. Wouldn’t that be amazing?

Q: A lot’s been said about the change back to the regular floor after trialling the blown diffuser on Friday - how much did that upset your preparations for the race?
LH:
Well, obviously, it meant we lost a day’s running compared to everybody else. But we didn’t really waste it, because we learnt a lot about the new floor, and we’ll hopefully be able to put that to good use sooner rather than later. And you’d probably say we started from zero on Saturday morning, except that we didn’t, because Gary (Paffett) and the team did their homework in the simulator on Friday night. Those guys did a fantastic job, and they really made our race, because when we got in the car on Saturday morning, we hit the ground running because we had a lot of confidence in their data. That was a great example of the team really pulling it out of the bag, and it helped us get a result that, on paper, shouldn’t really have been possible. Now, we need to spend the next 10 days really digging deep to get the T3 floor back on the cars and make sure it has a positive impact at the next race in Germany. The guys back at the factory are already working hard at it, and I’m sure we can get it to work soon.