McLaren Forgive Hamilton for Malaysia GP Outburst

The after-race in Malaysia saw a very frustrated Lewis Hamilton get out of his cockpit, as the British driver's high hopes at Sepang turned to dust during the one and a half hour of running on Sunday.

After losing pole position by only a tenth of a second on Saturday, Ham was expecting a close race the next day and started out decent enough, losing only one position at the start – to Nick Heidfeld –yet showing an obvious lack of pace as compared to race leader Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull).

That pace kept him in the 3rd to 4th place region throughout the running, until bad luck struck a few laps after his 3rd pit stop, when Fernando Alonso tried to overtake him and clipped the rear of his MP4-26. From that point on, Ham started losing pace and eventually had to pit for another time, finishing 7th overall.

What's worse, he received a 20-second penalty from the FIA stewards after the race which further demoted him to 8th place. Nevertheless, as soon as the decision was communicated to him, Ham was far more angry at his team for a ruined race strategy, rather at his former McLaren teammate for the contact late in the race.

I tried my best,” said an angry Hamilton after the race. “I stopped before everyone else and then the wrong tires were put on. It was very poor strategy but there's nothing I can do.

McLaren's team principal Martin Whitmarsh moved quickly to downplay Ham's frustrations, insisting that his driver has already understood the strategy set up by his team in Malasyia.

Lewis said a few things straight after the race which were from his view in the cockpit,” said Whitmarsh. “He's already smiling and laughing and when he looks back and sees the full picture I think he'll have a different opinion.”
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