Archive for the ‘Canada’ Category

Hamilton all smiles before his Canada horror show

Lewis Hamilton has vowed to stay at McLaren for as long as they can provide him with a competitive car.

The 2008 world champion’s future has been the subject of much speculation all season.

And Hamilton on Saturday was seen talking to Red Bull team principal Christian Horner in Montreal.

But the 26 year-old has rubbished speculation of him moving to the Milton Keynes-based outfit when his contract expires at the end of next season.

“In terms of where I am, again I’m just very fortunate to be a part of McLaren,” said Hamilton at a promotional event with NASCAR’s Tony Stewart at Watkins Glen.

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

“It’s one of the best teams there with great history, and we’ve now a car which is capable of winning, as my team-mate showed at the weekend.”

Sunday’s crash is unlikely to have helped relations between Hamilton and Jenson Button within the team.

The incident on lap nine forced Hamilton to retire with a broken rear suspension after he struck the pit-lane wall trying to overtake the eventual race winner.

He is now 76 points behind championship leader Sebastian Vettel.

But there was no indication of any ill-feeling after the race as Hamilton praised Button for his drive.

Hamilton – a race-winner in China back in April – is confident McLaren can produce a title-winning car – although his 2008 triumph is the team’s only title since 1999.

“We are the only other team that has won Grand Prix this year, so I don’t see why you’d particularly want to move when you have the most competitive car.

“I’ve grown up wanting to be world champion and I’ve definitely not achieved all that I want to,” he said.

Hamilton said it was not unusual to talk to other teams during the course of a weekend.

“I know Stefano Domenicali and we chat all the time, with Norbert Haug we chat all the time, and Christian.

“When I was going from Formula Three to GP2 I had a meeting with Christian when he was running the Red Bull team back in Formula 3000 I think it was.

“But I know everyone, so I speak to all the people during the weekend.”

Horner said last Thursday that Red Bull were trying to tie-up Mark Webber’s contract for 2012.

But the Australian appeared somewhat less keen. Webber said: “We’ll see how we go. There’s a bit to go yet in the summer. [I’ll] keep thinking.”

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 Ferrari
Felipe Massa (6th)

“I can’t draw much satisfaction from this sixth place, given the potential we had here. My chances of finishing on the podium and also of fighting for the win given how things went, just evaporated when I was passing Karthikeyan. He was going very slowly on the dry line but then, as I was passing him on the wet, he accelerated and I lost control of the car ending up in the wall.

Alonso retired for first time since Belgium 2010

Fernando Alonso (DNF)
“Everything went wrong, right from this morning when we saw it was raining. We had our best qualifying of the year and we found ourselves starting behind the safety car, when I felt that for me, the intermediates were the best tyre.

Finally there was the coming together with Button, which as a final insult left my car beached on a kerb and I was unable to get going again. It’s a real shame because today we really had a good race pace but we were unlucky: that’s not a feeling I have, it’s a fact. When you don’t score points then you must immediately turn the page and look to the next race.”

Stefano Domenicali, Ferrari team principal
“Regret is the feeling affecting all of us at the end of a chaotic Canadian Grand Prix. Today we had the potential to fight for the win, but everything that could go wrong did go wrong. Two incidents in particular – the collision between Fernando and Button and the passing move on Karthikeyan that caused Felipe to go of the track – leave a bitter taste in the mouth.”

Sauber

Kobayashi was second when race was suspended

Kamui Kobayashi (7th)
“We have scored points and in the end this is most important. We have proved we are good in the wet, but when the track became dry my pace wasn’t good enough to defend my position. I really tried to bring the car home in a better position, but it didn’t work out.”

Pedro de la Rosa (12th)
“First of all I want to thank the FIA. It stopped the race when it became too dangerous and I think every safety car call was right. Before the red flag it became impossible to drive.

“It was an extremely eventful race, especially for somebody who had just stepped into a car at short notice. I will not forget these days here, this is for sure.”

Toro Rosso
Jaime Alguersuari (8th)

“I am very happy because to finish eighth having started last from the pit lane is a really good result for us. I am also very pleased that I have scored my first points of the season, even if I know there is still room for improvement on my side and in terms of how we set up the car to suit me, especially in qualifying.

“This result will give everyone a lot of motivation to keep working hard. It gives us wings as we head for my second home race in Valencia! And the spectators deserve a mention for sitting in the cold and wet for so long, but I think they saw a good motor race.”

Sebastien Buemi (10th)
“Of course, I am pleased to have scored a point as that is always important. However, I am a bit disappointed because I think I could have done better myself and I’m not sure if changing to the slicks so early worked for me.

“But, looking at the overall result, including Jaime’s eighth place, I am very happy for the team, who did such a good job.”

Williams
Rubens Barrichello (9th)

“Starting from 16th, I am happy that I managed to score more points for the team. Unfortunately, it should have been more but I lost a potential 6th or 7th place when I went offline to avoid Kobayashi after the last safety car went in.”

 HRT
Vitantonio Liuzzi (13th)

“It was a crazy race. The crazier it is the more we like it though. It was a great result for us, for everybody in the team, because we’ve done everything right since Saturday.

“We hope this won’t be our best finish of the season; we hope to finish even better in the future and will push for this”.

Narain Karthikeyan (17th)
“It was a very interesting race for us, we achieved our best position yet. I drove well today in wet and dry conditions. I overtook a few cars, D’Ambrosio and Glock, and I’m very happy to finish the race”.

Colin Kolles, HRT team principal
“Today we achieved our best result in the history of Hispania Racing. It was a great race with a positive ending for the team. We made a step forward in terms of performance and in the championship position. The team is working very hard and it is a deserved result. The drivers did a very good job driving more aggressively after the track was drying up. We will have to improve further and target the 10th position in the championship. ”

Virgin
Jerome D’Ambrosio (14th)

“It was just an unbelievable race. We were in a racing situation for about four hours. I’ve never experienced anything like that. It was something quite special. It was a great race and really good experience for me.”

Timo Glock (15th)
“It was an unusual and difficult race. I think it’s one of the longest races I’ve ever raced in! It was a bit of a shame in the last part of the race as I had quite a good pace and I managed to catch and pass Trulli. But then I had a massive lock-up on both front tyres which cost me badly at the end.”

Lotus
Jarno Trulli (16th)

“That was a very eventful race. It started well but I struggled all afternoon with the brakes and even though I was able to get them up to temperature I think they glazed after the first safety car and I couldn’t recover them.”

Heikki Kovalainen (DNF)
“Unfortunately my race came to an end with a driveshaft failure. When we restarted I lost drive pretty much immediately and had to retire which is obviously a disappointing end to the weekend. It’s just one of those things, nothing I could do about it so hopefully we’ll have better luck in Valencia and keep pushing on.”

Mike Gascoyne, Lotus chief technical officer
“After a very strong weekend that was not the sort of race we wanted to have. We did have a strong weekend in terms of the car’s performance so while that was not the best race we will ever have, I think we can see it as another stepping stone in the development of the team.”

Force India
Adrian Sutil (DNF)

“At the start of the race the visibility was extremely poor and there was very little grip. I had problems with the full wets so I switched to the intermediates quite early on, which were good for a few laps until the rain got too heavy.

“At the restart I was doing quite well until I got too close to Rosberg when the safety car was out. All the cars ahead of me slowed down a lot at the hairpin and I just got caught out, which damaged my front wing. But the car still felt okay and I didn’t lose too much time. After the drive-through penalty, I decided it was worth the risk of switching to dry tyres, but it was maybe a few laps too early. I had quite a big snap on my out lap and touched the wall, which broke the left rear suspension.”

Paul di Resta (DNF)
“The weather conditions were very bad today and given the intensity of the rain it was absolutely the right decision to stop the race.

“After the restart I think things were going well until I lost my front wing against Nick (Heidfeld) at the chicane when he cut across me. That gave me a drive-through penalty, which I was quite surprised to receive because it only really compromised me.

“After that I was coming back through the field and I was pushing to pass Rubens (Barrichello) in the final few laps. Unfortunately I pushed a bit too hard and clipped the wall, which gave me a puncture. That’s why I had to park the car. It’s a shame because we had a strong car today and we could have come away with some important points.”

McLaren
Jenson Button (1st)

“That was the best victory of my career, and today is therefore a very special day for me. I fought my way from last to first to win the race, and I overtook the cars in front of me on the track.

“It was an amazing victory – I don’t think it could have been any better, especially after Monte-Carlo where we thought we had a win in the bag but were then disappointed at the very end. I was a little bit fortunate today when Sebastian (Vettel) made a mistake on the last lap, but I think we deserved that bit of luck!

“As far as the incident with Lewis is concerned, I couldn’t see a thing behind me except a blur of Vodafone rocket-red, but that could have been my rear wing: obviously, it’s the same colour as Lewis’s car.

“Now, I just want to enjoy this moment; it’s been a long time coming and it couldn’t have been much sweeter.”

Hamilton tips Webber into a spin on lap five

Lewis Hamilton (DNF)
“First of all, I have to offer my heartfelt congratulations to Jenson – he drove an absolutely incredible race and thoroughly deserved this victory. It was an utterly fantastic performance, from a truly great driver.

“Although the conditions were very tricky from the start, I had pretty good grip and I was doing the best I could to keep the car on the track; I think I had pretty good race pace, and I didn’t have any particular problems. I touched Mark’s (Webber) car after he braked a bit early into the first corner. He left me enough room, but I touched the inside kerb and understeered into him.

After I fell back behind Jenson, he outbraked himself into the final chicane and got a poor exit, so I was able to get a good run on him. It felt to me like I was halfway alongside him down the pits straight – but, as he probably hadn’t spotted me, he continued moving across on the racing line.There was no room for me, so I hit the wall. Of course, I don’t think it was intentional: I know Jenson well enough and I know he wouldn’t do that. He’s a good guy.”

 Martin Whitmarsh, McLaren team principal
“The 2011 Canadian Grand Prix may well be remembered as one of the most eventful, exciting and suspenseful races in Formula One history. In fact I think I’ve heard the word ‘unbelievable’ shouted at me by joyful colleagues about a hundred times this afternoon, and in truth Jenson’s drive was exactly that: absolutely unbelievable. Other adjectives that spring to mind are ‘heroic’, ‘majestic’, ‘magnificent’ and ‘superb’!”

Red Bull
Sebastian Vettel (2nd)

”Of course I’m disappointed. I think it was a very difficult race from start to finish and we led every single lap, apart from the last one, or part of the last one. I think I was probably too conservative when I was in the lead after the last safety car.

 “I made a mistake. It’s down to me, I locked up the rear a little bit and what you have to do then is open up the car and go a bit straighter, there’s only one line and I ended up in the wet, so it was quite easy for him to pass.

“At the moment – when you have it in your hands and you give it away – then it’s not the sweetest feeling. But, I think all in all, it was a good race for us today.”

Mark Webber (3rd)
“It was an eventful race! I had a few people to pass after the break; it wasn’t too hard until the dry line appeared on the racing line and it was slippery off line. When you have experienced guys like Michael (Schumacher) and Nick (Heidfeld) to pass, well those guys know what they’re doing, so it becomes even trickier.

“It was a pretty good fight with Michael, we both wanted the same bit of track when we were braking for the chicane, but when JB arrived, he was absolutely flying. Today’s result means plenty of points for the team and it’s a good result, so I’m pretty happy with that.”

Christian Horner, Red Bull team principal
“After a long afternoon and to have pretty much led every lap of the race, it was obviously frustrating to lose the Grand Prix almost in sight of the chequered flag. Unfortunately Sebastian made a rare mistake on a day when a lot of drivers made a lot of mistakes. He paid a price, but second is still a very good result and far from disastrous.”

Schumacher was chasing first podium since 2006

Mercedes
Michael Schumacher (4th)

“I am leaving this race with one eye laughing and one eye crying, as I am not sure if I should be excited or sad about it.

“Having been in second place towards the end, I would obviously have loved to finish there and be on the podium again. But even if it did not work out in the very end, we can be happy about the result and the big fight we put in.”

Nico Rosberg (11th)
“It was a very demanding race this afternoon. In general, everything was okay with my car and, at the end, I was up there in the points but I made a mistake at the hairpin on lap 66. I was trying to overtake Kobayashi and was very close behind him in turn 10; he slowed when I didn’t expect it, I hit the back of him and damaged my front wing.”

 Ross Brawn, Mercedes GP team principal
” It was a thrilling race and Michael drove beautifully in the second part; he did a strong job on the intermediates and the option tyres, but was unable to hold off Jenson and Mark’s faster cars, particularly when they had the use of DRS. Even so, it was a fantastic drive to climb eight places and finish fourth.”

Norbert Haug, vice-president, Mercedes-Benz Motorsport
“This wasn’t just a Grand Prix – it was like an action movie. This was motor racing at its best.”

Renault
Vitaly Petrov (5th)

“Today, the conditions became very difficult after a few laps and stopping the race was the right decision. There was absolutely no grip and the car was aquaplaning everywhere.

“I really feel we could have finished on the podium today. That said, I welcome these extra points, and I think we’re back on track after a couple of difficult races. A big thank you to the team for the work this weekend.”

Nick Heidfeld (DNF)
“Naturally, the main disappointment for me is that I didn’t finish the race. I was behind Kamui (Kobayashi) and then something happened. He slowed down suddenly and I hit the back of him, which resulted in my front wing coming off and me going off the track. I was on track for fifth and some good points, so it’s frustrating.”