Hamilton says he will stay at McLaren

Last Updated: Wednesday, June 15, 2011 - 17:13

London: Lewis Hamilton has replied to media speculation linking him to Red Bull by saying he will have no reason to leave McLaren so long as they can give him a winning car.

"I don`t see why you would particularly want to move when you have the most competitive car," the British driver told reporters after an event at the Watkins Glen circuit in upstate New York.

"So as long as we have the car that can do the job, there will be no reason to leave."

The 2008 Formula One world champion was observed talking to Red Bull team principal Christian Horner at last weekend`s Canadian Grand Prix but he shrugged off the significance of their meeting.

"I know all the managers, the bosses, all the teams. I know (Ferrari team boss) Stefano Domenicali, we chat all the time," he said.

"I`ve known Christian since I was in the lower series, when I was going from Formula 3 to GP2, Christian was running an F3000 team and I used to speak to him back then. I spoke to a lot of people last weekend."

Hamilton`s meeting with Horner was in the Red Bull hospitality area in Montreal, with media reports saying he had arrived unannounced and asked one of the catering staff to find the team boss.

However the fact that it was in such an obvious location, in full sight of the media, led to various interpretations of Hamilton`s motives.
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The driver`s deal with McLaren is believed to expire at the end of next season and some saw the meeting as sending McLaren a warning before Hamilton`s new management, XIX entertainment, open contract negotiations in earnest.

Australian Mark Webber`s Red Bull contract expires at the end of the year.

Hamilton has also been frustrated that his car is not as competitive as the Red Bull, even though he won in China in April and his team mate Jenson Button won in Montreal.

Red Bull`s champion Sebastian Vettel is heading for his second successive title after winning five out of seven races so far this year, and starting six on pole position, to build a commanding 60-point lead.

"I grew up wanting to be Formula One world champion. I`ve definitely not achieved all that I want to," Hamilton said after swapping cars with twice NASCAR champion Tony Stewart at the event on Tuesday.

"I`ll definitely be spending as much time there until I do achieve what I`ve always wanted to do. In terms of where I am, I`m again just very fortunate to be a part of...McLaren," he added.

"It`s one of the best teams there, again with great history. We have a car that is capable of winning, as my team mate showed at the weekend. We are the only other team that has won Grand Prix this year."

Hamilton has also been involved in numerous scrapes and controversies, retiring in Canada after his car was damaged in a collision with Button, leading to suggestions that he has become reckless and needs to calm down.

Bureau Report



First Published: Wednesday, June 15, 2011 - 17:13

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