HAMILTON LEADS, BUT WON’T LIFT OFF
Lewis Hamilton still feels like he is “chasing” the championship despite taking the points lead from Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg after winning the Hungarian Grand Prix.
The Brit now heads Rosberg for the first time this season after the pair’s 1-2 finish at the Hungaroring on Sunday, with Hamilton’s advantage six points.
It marks a rapid turnaround for the world champion, who was 43 points behind Rosberg earlier in the year after the German won the opening four races.
But despite claiming the advantage, Hamilton is not going to change his approach for the rest of the campaign.
“It’s not massive,” he said of taking the F1 points lead. “Right now, I am still with the same mentality of still chasing. I am very proud of coming back, but there’s a long way to go.”
Hamilton is aware that given the number of engine failures he had in the early stages of the season, he will soon have to start from the back when penalties are applied for using more than the permitted number of replacement parts.
He added: “I really would love to come out of the next race with another result like this so when I do go to Spa or Monza, whichever one it is where I take the penalty and I start from pit lane or last place, that is the minimum damage, it doesn’t mean I am 25 points behind.
“I don’t really want to get back to there. I honestly feel we are in the strongest position we have been all year in terms of our performance and how unified we are.”
Rosberg meanwhile has been boosted by signing a new deal to remain with Mercedes for the next two seasons, as his previous contract was due to expire at the end of 2016.
Despite losing the title lead, the German is now eyeing his home race this weekend as a chance to seize the initiative back.
“It’s very close,” he said. “Now I move my focus to Hockenheim, because it’s my home race. I love the track and so I’m going to try and win there.
“Everything’s still possible and I just want to focus on winning races, that’s what I wanted to do today [in Hungary], I had my full focus on that, it didn’t work out unfortunately, just losing out in turn one.”
Brit now heads teammate by six points
Hamilton’s Hungary win gave him lead