Lewis Hamilton: McLaren not good enough to win F1 title
Driver voices frustration as Red Bull's Mark Webber wins British Grand Prix at Silverstone
WITH the Formula One season just nine races old, Lewis Hamilton has indicated that his McLaren team has no realistic chance of winning the championship unless radical improvements are made to the speed of its cars.
Hamilton was speaking after Australian Mark Webber won the British Grand Prix at Silverstone, taking first place for Red Bull after Ferrari's Fernando Alonso had led for much of the race. Hamilton is now fourth in the drivers' championship, 24 points behind Webber and 37 behind Alonso.
"We are still in the fight, but unless we find something it's going to be hard to stay in the fight," Hamilton told the BBC. "I raced my heart out as always but we just struggled; we did not have enough speed in general."
Hamilton, the 2008 world champion, finished in eighth place while his McLaren team-mate Jenson Button, the 2009 world champion, finished 10th. "I'm sorry to the fans that we could not have a better result," Button said. "Finishing eighth and 10th – at McLaren you don't expect that."
Hamilton, who won at Silverstone in 2008, briefly led the race in the early stages before a pit stop. He was never able to get back into contention and the poor result left him obviously frustrated. McLaren started the season with the fastest car but have seen rivals make huge improvements as they drop back.
"I was expecting us to get at least fifth, but those teams in front of us were much quicker," said Hamilton, who is now on 92 points for the season. McLaren are fourth in the constructors' championship, behind Red Bull, Ferrari and Lotus.
"I feel I know what it is [that needs to be changed] but it is too big a change for us to do in a season. You need to do it in the next car. I am speaking to them about how we can make the next car better. We will keep our heads down, stay focused and hopefully at some stage we will get a car to challenge at the front," he added.