Mercedes refuse to blame Hamil­ton

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Sport Starts Here -

MERCEDES re­fused to be drawn into a blame game af­ter a dread­ful start by Lewis Hamil­ton at the Ital­ian Grand Prix scup­pered his chance of a 50th ca­reer win and blew the world cham­pi­onship wide open.

Nico Rosberg moved to just two points be­hind Hamil­ton af­ter he took ad­van­tage of his ti­tle ri­val’s slow get­away to claim his sec­ond vic­tory in eight days.

Pole-sit­ter Hamil­ton (31), was bid­ding to be­come the first driver since the great Juan Manuel Fan­gio in the 1950s to claim a hat-trick of vic­to­ries at the so-called Tem­ple of Speed.

But a poor open­ing to the race, af­ter a sim­i­lar start cost the world cham­pion prob­a­ble vic­to­ries at the open­ing two rounds in Aus­tralia and Bahrain, was to prove dam­ag­ing on Sun­day.

Hamil­ton, who re­cov­ered to fin­ish sec­ond, in­formed his team that he was at fault for his slow start, but fol­low­ing the race he in­sisted it was not his er­ror.

‘We are never blam­ing any­body,’ said Mercedes boss Toto Wolff. ‘I will never per­mit any­body to be blamed. Not the driver. Not the engi­neer. No­body. Be­cause if you start to blame peo­ple this is when it starts go­ing down­hill be­cause peo­ple will try to pro­tect their a*** and make sure they have a conservative sys­tem in place rather that putting the best de­vel­op­ments on the car.

‘In this par­tic­u­lar case, it is a com­bi­na­tion of things so that is why I don’t want to go there.’

But de­spite the set­back, Hamil­ton, who at one stage this sea­son was 43 points be­hind Rosberg, re­mained up­beat on his prospects of keep­ing his sole ti­tle chal­lenger at bay in the re­main­ing seven rounds.— Sports­mail.

Lewis Hamil­ton

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