Thursday, 15 November, 2018

How Hamilton can win the title in Mexico

Brawn says errors no coincidence for ‘out of sorts’ Vettel			Images by Sam Bloxham  LAT Brawn says errors no coincidence for ‘out of sorts’ Vettel Images by Sam Bloxham LAT
Domingo Copeland | 30 October, 2018, 10:59

Vettel's last victory came in Belgium six races ago and he's missed the podium three times in the last five. "My goal is to try to win the race this weekend", he told reporters yesterday.

Hamilton could have clinched his fifth world title at the Circuit of the Americas in Texas, but a costly decision to pit twice meant he could only manage third place.

But Hamilton said he wanted to bounce back from a "difficult" race in the U.S. last weekend, when he finished third after starting on pole position.

"And every one after that has got harder and harder to win a championship, even though you are improving".

"The first one felt incredibly hard [to win] but from then on it's got harder and harder".

He has had races ruined from potential winning positions all season, the most notable being a puncture on the last few laps in Baku, retiring from second in Austria, being hit on the first lap by Sebastian Vettel in France and more recently, having to give up a win for Hamilton in Russian Federation.

In what started as a season that could finally end Mercedes' dominance - the reigning champions have once again shown why they are so tough to beat in the current era by surging forward compared to their rivals in the second half of the campaign.

"They took the auto apart and when they put it back together, it was imbalanced, with a massive cross-weight, in the order of 50kg", he said. So I guess there must be some sort of hole being on the inside of another auto in that position.

"But the right-handers it was better, but there are not a lot of right-handers at that track".

Red Bull pair Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo topped the leaderboard in practice.

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"I think it's probably a little bit like strength of the mind", said the Australian. Ross Brawn (pictured above), F1's motorsport boss, however, has hinted that he wants to make a change.

The Englishman, however, knows he can cruise to finish seventh and take the title whatever else happens around him. "It is not like I had gone in too fast or would have spun on my own at that speed".

"I guess there must be some sort of hole being on the inside of another auto in that position".

"On all three occasions, I wasn't clearly ahead, at best side-by-side... maybe next time I (will) try the outside". The energy of the crowd really motivates me and the drivers' parade is always a very emotional moment. "We haven't yet understood everything, which is also normal". Saying another driver lost it wouldn't be fair, he said. If you are the one spinning, then obviously something didn't go right. Only this time it is much more of a certainty.

"But in the future I will still try to use any chance I get, but I'll try to ensure that the vehicle doesn't do a U-turn", he added.

"Arriving here with the deficit in points we have..."

"We can't forget that he's more under the magnifying class than most others". The lack of practice dry running in the United States meant teams were unable to collate all the data they normally would have, contributing to the unpredictable nature of a thrilling race. "In the end of the season, you look at the points and add them up and know yourself first what has been missing or not".

Ricciardo said he felt the first-lap clash with Vettel at Austin was a racing incident and that the auto "just got away from him".

Times BST until Sunday, 28 October when GMT begins.

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