by clicking the arrows at the side of the page, or by using the toolbar.
by clicking anywhere on the page.
by dragging the page around when zoomed in.
by clicking anywhere on the page when zoomed in.
web sites or send emails by clicking on hyperlinks.
Email this page to a friend
Search this issue
Index - jump to page or section
Archive - view past issues
GP Week : Issue 124
F1 BRITAIN >> Slow Vettel pitstop hands victory to Alonso McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton was delighted with the reception he got from silverstone’s 122,000-strong race-going crowd after finishing fourth on sunday, having come out on top in a thrilling last- lap battle with Ferrari’s Felipe Massa. after starting tenth, Hamilton was up to fifth by the end of the second lap, but had to conserve fuel heavily in the final stint. Hamilton’s fuel-saving cost him a place to Webber on lap 46 and with Massa closing in at a rate of over two seconds a lap, the Briton was given a reprieve on the final lap when he was able to return to full-power, allowing him to keep fourth by just 0.024 seconds. “Before the end, I had to start saving fuel: you have to lift and coast, which means the brake temperatures drop. So I had no brakes, and that’s why I kept locking up,” said Hamilton. “On the final lap, the team gave me the order to push as hard as I could, but Felipe had already closed the gap by that point, so it was difficult to defend. That last lap was as close as it’s ever going to get! “In the final corner I stayed on the inside and braked as hard as I could. Fortunately, we both got around the corner in one piece and I just pipped him at the finish.” Hamilton had been forced to save fuel because of his better-than-expected pace, but had conserved enough fuel to allow a full-speed final lap. Going into Vale, the penultimate corner of the race, Massa overtook Hamilton around the outside but the pair touched lightly, allowing Hamilton retake the place and crossed the line fractionally ahead. Despite having criticised Hamilton’s driving in previous races, Massa had nothing against the Briton on this occasion. “ Well there is nothing really to say,” he said. “I was close to Lewis going into the last corner. He went to the inside, I went outside, I went to brake after him and I was able to turn a little bit in front of him and he touched me a little bit, but I don’t think it was anything really wrong, in my opinion.” Hamilton delighted with fans’ reaction to fourth Beats Massa by 0.024s in final-lap tussle McLaren believe Jenson Button could have finished on the podium had he not been forced to retire with a loose right- front wheel. The Briton was running fifth up until his final pitstop, but he was released from his box before the offending wheel had been secured, as the mechanic had been changing wheel guns when Button was released. Team principal Martin Whitmarsh refused to heap blame on the pitcrew, explaining that it had been a simple case of human error. “Jenson drove an excellent race – combative yet disciplined – and I think he could well have bagged a podium finish had it not been for the pitstop mix-up that prematurely ended his race,” said Whitmarsh. “Our pitcrew has done a fantastic job all year – but on this occasion they released Jenson before his right-front wheel had been properly attached. “It was a case of human error in the heat of themoment–but,asIsay,andasIwantto stress the point, our pitcrew has completed dozens of faultless pitstops under extreme pressure this season and today’s error was therefore totally atypical.” Button stayed out one lap longer than those ahead of him before pitting for the final time, and believes he could have come out ahead of Webber after his pitstop. Such an outcome would likely have put Button on the podium, as team-mate Hamilton coped with saving fuel. “Before my final stop I’d had great pace, and I’d caught Lewis, Sebastian and Mark. When they peeled off into the pits, I stayed out for one more lap and I think I would have come out alongside, or even ahead of, Mark after the stop,” said Button. “But, as I turned out of the pitlane, my right-front wheel came off and I was forced to stop immediately. “ The guy on the front-right lost the wheelnut and turned to take another; as he turned, I think his hand moved and the guy on the front jack felt that that was the trigger to lower the car. Then the lollipop lifted. Hopefully, we won’t have that sort of issue again.” McLaren were subsequently fined €5,000 for releasing Button without the wheel being secured. 27