F1: Lewis Hamilton surprised by victory at German Grand Prix

Hamilton LAT PHOTOGRAPHIC
Lewis Hamilton was surprised by his victory at Germany.

By ADAM COOPER on 7/24/2011

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Lewis Hamilton says that even McLaren can't say for sure exactly where its winning form came from in Germany.

Hamilton qualified second and scored a superb victory after jumping into the lead at the start, although he had to fight off Mark Webber and Fernando Alonso along the way.

“We didn't really think we would be so fast, and [we're] not quite sure what we've done because we've not really brought much here,” said Hamilton. “I don't know if it's the conditions. I think we were competitive in Montreal, and in Monaco and in Valencia; in hot temperatures, we are less competitive. We obviously went to Silverstone with the rule changes, which was a big problem for us, and then, we come back here to where we were, really, in cool conditions.

“I think we're there or thereabouts, but I do still feel that the overall performance of the two guys here, particularly the Red Bulls', is slightly better than ours. You can see this weekend, I was quickest in the first sector and the last sector, but we lose a lot in the middle sector, and that's because we don't have a DRS, [drag-reduction] system, as efficient as theirs, so I think that we will lose at least half of those four tenths in the middle sector.

“If we can improve in that area, then I think we could definitely eke ahead of them, so that's what we need to work on.”

Hamilton said that the German win would be a big boost to the team: “I think days like this definitely pay off more than you could imagine, and being able to have close races--this was a great race in the sense that there was Mark, me and Fernando all within a tenth of each other, lap after lap after lap, and it was about real perfection, and it was about really not making mistakes.

Hamilton also had kind words for Sebastian Vettel: “You can't expect him to be perfect all the time. He's won a huge amount of races from the end of last year into this year. It's easy for everyone to criticize him, just from one race, but he's been exceptionally consistent for a long time. For whatever reasons, I'm sure he will bounce back, he will be very quick at the next race, and I think it's maybe a one-off.” 

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