McLaren

Can Lewis Hamilton Crank Out Another Championship?

Adam FlinnCorrespondent IFebruary 21, 2009

Well, I suppose I better consider Mr Hamilton's championship prospects, considering that he is a prominent feature in Formula 1. Clearly, Lewis Hamilton has been a major success for McLaren, netting them their first championship in almost 10 years, and there's no doubt that he will be contending for the 2009 title.

I make no secret of the fact that I don't particularly like McLaren. Don't ask why, it's just me being immature and bitter. However, they are a successful team who have great respect, and Hamilton is by far their best chance of securing another championship this season.

So, let's look at his career in Formula 1 so far. He has won nine races, had numerous podium finishes, surprisingly only a few fastest laps, and he has accomplished this over the course of just two seasons. It is very easy to overlook the fact that he has only been around since 2007.

To miss the championship by a single point in your debut season must be frustrating, but nevertheless it's impressive. To win the championship by a single point in your second season shows that it can be done and must take a great deal of pressure off of your shoulders.

Lewis had some fantastic races — Silverstone sticks out immediately. Sitting at Copse, I didn't see much of it (for the first corner, it really is an awful place to sit) and I was busy shouting RUBENS! very loudly with my Honda-supporting friend, but any driver who didn't spin off five times in that weather must have had a good day.

Then, of course, races like Canada crop up. How he managed to blame the team for this mishap is beyond me, but that cost him an easy win.

The FIA also decided to crop up from time to time, and made Hamilton's season more difficult. Some, such as the grid penalty at France, were deserved. However, the Belgian penalty was a tad more controversial.

Despite these problems, he emerged from the 2008 campaign victorious. Testing for 2009 seems to be solid for McLaren, although it is unclear what their pace is compared to Ferrari at this stage. All Hamilton has to do is cut out the mistakes that defined particular races of his season, and possibly bribe the FIA a bit, and there's no doubt he could become the 2009 world champion.

I think that makes five drivers that I said will win the championship now.

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