Looking ahead to running the classic MP4/4 at Goodwood
After the dream result a year ago in the British Grand Prix, the return 12 months later for defending champion Lewis Hamilton was always going to be something of a disappointment given the struggles the McLaren Mercedes
team has endured as they try to get the MP4-24 package on the pace.
After qualifying 19th, Hamilton raced hard with the likes of Fernando Alonso
and Nick Heidfeld
before a quick at Club spin dropped him back to his eventual 15th placed finish behind his 2007 team-mate.
"It was a difficult afternoon for the whole team, but we knew that going into the weekend," the British racer told his official website. "I had some exciting moments out on the racetrack and really enjoyed my race. And while the result didn't look so good for us, again, I think we can take some positives away from this weekend because we genuinely learnt a lot about our car.
"I had a great time racing against Nick and Fernando, both guys who are hard but fair," he continued. "The move on Heidfeld was pretty much on the limit, but it was fun," he continued with reference to his aggressive dive for position into Maggotts as the BMW Sauber driver got back up to speed after exiting the pits.
The team has various updates scheduled for the next Grand Prix in just under three weeks and Hamilton is looking forward to the coming races that do not feature so many high-speed sweeping turn that expose the car’s Achilles heel – lack of downforce.
“I'm looking forward to the Nurburgring - the home race for Mercedes-Benz; I'm hoping that we will have some huge improvements for the race as it would be great to give our second home crowd something to cheer and feel proud about, but we'll see,” he stated. “Places like Hungary, Valencia and Singapore should hopefully be stronger for us and so there is ‘light at the end of the tunnel' for the end of season push. . We need a competitive car before the end of the season so we can learn as much as we possibly can for next season."
Ahead of the next Grand Prix outing, Hamilton will be in action at the Goodwood Festival of Speed on Sunday 5th July where he will be behind the wheel of the stunning Honda-powered MP4/4 that took Ayrton Senna and Alain Prost to 15 wins from 16 starts in 1988.
“Whenever I go to the McLaren Technology Centre, there are two cars that I love the most - the first is the McLaren F1 that I've set my heart on winning and the second is Ayrton's MP4/4,” he said. “Even today, it still looks like the car to be racing. About a month ago, I went down and sat in the car while the guys were preparing it for Goodwood, and tomorrow I'm having my final seat-fitting, that is going to be a pretty cool moment!"