Lewis Hamilton Believes McLaren Will Be Even Quicker in Brazil

Adam PooleAnalyst IOctober 18, 2008

After leading the Chinese Grand-Prix from the word go and being the quickest man on the track all weekend, Lewis Hamilton believes that his MP4-23 will be even quicker in the final race of the season at Interlagos.

Hamilton became favourite for the win this weekend after some stunning lap times in Friday's and Saturday's free practice sessions.  His pace was confirmed in Saturday's qualifying session as he outran Ferrari no matter what times they threw at him.

The 23-year-old continued his China success on Sunday by winning the race with an 14-second lead over second-place Massa, which could have been more had he not eased off to save his engine any further stress.

As they head to Brazil, Hamilton will be using the same engine as he did in China as a result of his engine change at the start of this weekend. Despite this, the championship leader insists he will be still quicker at Interlagos in two weeks' time.

"We'll be even more competitive than we were here, so that's comforting.

"We know we've got to do a good job. It will be tough, but I hope as a team we can pull through."

Hamilton is now seven points clear of Massa in the Drivers Championship and would have been further had Massa's team-mate not taken one for the team in China and eased off to allow Massa to claim the extra points.

Speaking about his China win, Lewis said, "This is another step towards the championship, toward my dream and toward my team's dream."

"The team deserve it; they've worked very, very hard throughout the season.

"It was right not to go out and try to win everything in this race, but to look at both races and try to score as many points collectively."

The seven-point lead means that Hamilton can come fifth in Brazil and still claim the title, regardless of where Massa finishes.

McLaren had been quicker all weekend in Shanghai, and Lewis praised the work done by everyone in the McLaren garage and behind the scenes.

"All weekend we've had God on our side, as always," said Hamilton.

"The team have done a phenomenal job preparing the car and making steps forward.

"We came here, and the car felt fantastic all weekend.

"I owe so much to the guys, not just at the track, but back home; the car is really a dream to drive."

After a disastrous race in Fuji, Hamilton bore the brunt of some very strong criticism by fans and drivers. 

However, Lewis drove a superb race on Sunday and drove with a huge amount of discipline today, and believes his early change was a strong deciding factor.

"It felt like it was one of the best starts we've had this year, which was what we needed," he said.

"So I got into turn one quite clear, I took it easy for the first few corners and then I started to bridge the gap.

"Fortunately we were very, very consistent. I think every lap was faster, and there were very few errors throughout the whole run, and therefore I was able to create a gap, and from there it was pretty smooth sailing.

"After my second pit stop, we were pretty much cruising, just looking after the tyres and the engine and trying to bring the car home.

"I knew there was an even bigger gap behind me and it was inevitable that Kimi would let Felipe by, so I just had to keep it under control."

Lewis Hamilton and Felipe Massa have the final chapter to this rivalry in two weeks in Brazil.

Can Lewis show yet more discipline or will he make the same sort of costly mistake as he did in Fuji this year?


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