Focus on Formula One championship, not Ayrton Senna feat: Lewis Hamilton
Formula One championship leader Lewis Hamilton said he would be emotional if he matched Ayrton Senna`s 41 Grand Prix wins at Sunday`s Singapore race but his focus remained entirely on retaining the world title.
Singapore: Formula One championship leader Lewis Hamilton said he would be emotional if he matched Ayrton Senna`s 41 Grand Prix wins at Sunday`s Singapore race but his focus remained entirely on retaining the world title.
The Briton picked up his 40th Grand Prix win in Italy a fortnight ago to stretch his lead to 53 points over Mercedes team mate Nico Rosberg with only six races to go following Sunday`s in the Southeast Asian city state.
Hamilton is favourite to win at the Marina Bay Street Circuit, which would mean matching Senna`s victories in 161 starts, but he said equalling the late Brazilian`s three world titles mattered more.
"It honestly doesn`t make any difference. I`m here fighting for the world championships, that`s my focus," Hamilton told reporters on Thursday when asked if the pressure of matching Senna`s record would weigh on him.
"I don`t feel particularly under pressure this weekend but if I was to achieve the same amount at some stage, or this weekend, it would be very emotional.
"After the last race I was only notified how many races I had done and to see that almost correlated with the career that Ayrton had had. I couldn`t believe it.
"Naturally it feels really amazing. It may or may not happen this weekend, there is a serious challenge ahead of me, but I am just grateful to be up there."
Hamilton enjoyed the perfect weekend in Monza, topping the time sheets in every practice session, qualifying on pole and then taking a seventh chequered flag of the year.
"I can`t really top the weekend I had so I guess it`s just trying to match it," the 30-year-old said.
"It`s only the first or second time I had a weekend like that in Formula One, it doesn`t come around that often."
Singapore features 23 tight corners on a long track that often pushes the two-hour race time limit. Coupled with the heat, humidity and racing under lights it is one of the most demanding on the calendar.
Pole sitters have won five of the seven previous races there, including Hamilton last year, and the Briton was confident of adding to his impressive 11 poles from 12 races this season.
"We thought last year `best year ever` but we have topped it somehow this year," he said.