Felipe Massa is in pole positon with Lewis Hamilton second for tomorrow’s Brazilian Grand Prix.
Lewis Hamilton in Brazil GP practice
Happily, Hamilton escaped with his championship dream in place last night after his McLaren team went unpunished for illegally using two sets of wet-weather tyres in yesterday’s first practice session.
McLaren were fined Â£10,500 for the error. The Englishman takes a four-point lead into the title decider tomorrow.
Team boss Ron Dennis said, “It was 100 per cent our fault, not Lewis’s. Perhaps we were too tense.”
Hamilton said, “For me, I am so competitive. I always want to over-achieve, I want to achieve more and more and more. I want to win. I want it so bad, and the last race really showed me just how much I want it. I’ve been leading the championship now since the third race, and for me that’s just mind-blowing. Coming into the season, I was just hoping to do a good job, maybe get some points and podium positions, so I never imagined I would have four race wins and six pole positions. But I have the chance to win the world championship this weekend, and if I do, then fantastic. It will be a big step in my career and my life. If not then I will live to fight another day and I will move on to next year and try to win it then. But I feel I was born for this, so I know I’ve got it in me.”
He added, “It’s quite surreal being here. For many years I’ve wanted to come to Brazil and race at Interlagos. My first real opportunity is now here, and I’m buzzing. I can’t wait. I’m really excited about this. I look back and I’ve had a phenomenal season for my first year in Formula One. I’m 22 years old and very fortunate to be driving for McLaren. I’m very, very privileged to be in the position I am now, and I never thought I would be here, days away from potentially winning the world championship. I was in my hotel room yesterday looking out of the window, and I was thinking ‘wow!’ ”
Tomorrow’s race will be a sea of dreams.
After being cleared by a FIA inquiry in mid-week into what appeared to be dangerous driving in the Japanese Grand Prix, Lewis Hamilton made a pig’s ear of the Chinese GP when only 25 laps from the World Championship title.
Later, he was man enough to admit he’d misjudged the state of his tyres when forced to retire by erratic road-holding.
The race was won by Kimi Raikkonen, with Fernando Alonso second. The result sets up a three-way fight for the championship in the final Grand Prix of the season in Brazil.
Hamilton will kick himself all the way to the bank if he loses the title now.
In a rain drenched race which forced the safety car to slow down the drivers for an extended period, Lewis Hamilton showed his mettle by taking the chequered flag and maximum points.
Luck was on the British rookie’s side in the Japanese Grand Prix as arch-rival, Fernando Alonso, failed to finish when his car seemed to break up in mid track.
However, more controversy has followed the result. The world championship leader has been accused by Red Bull driver Mark Webber of causing him to hit Toro Rossoâ€™s Sebastian Vettel by speeding up and slowing down behind the safety car.
Footage taken from the grandstand is believed to show Hamilton dramatically decelerating and causing the shunt behind him. In theory this could lose him points in the FIA inquiry currently taking place.
However, it’s unlikely the sport will shoot the golden goose and lose the feelgood finale now building up for the last two races of the season.
Lewis Hamilton has pipped fanatical rival and team-mate Fernando Alonso to pole position in tomorrow’s Japanese Grand Prix.
Could this be the moment when the young rookie driver, in his first season of Formula One, shows his class and stamps his dominance on his opponent?
Before practice began there was much talk of the bitterness between the two men and Hamilton’s determination not to let his season’s magnificent start slip away.
He was said to be upping the ante in his ferocious world title scrap with Alonso, dismissing him as “not the person I imagined” and promising to match him blow for blow on the track.
We shall see.