Skip to main content

McLaren insists F1 title 'still up for grabs'

updated 10:34 AM EDT, Mon July 30, 2012
McLaren driver Lewis Hamilton won at the Hungaroring in 2007 and 2009.
McLaren driver Lewis Hamilton won at the Hungaroring in 2007 and 2009.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Martin Whitmarsh believes Lewis Hamilton can win 2012 F1 title
  • Hamilton won from pole position at Sunday's Hungarian Grand Prix
  • The 2008 champion is fourth in drivers' standings, 47 points behind leader
  • The F1 season now takes a five-week break before the Belgian Grand Prix

(CNN) -- McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh is confident Lewis Hamilton can challenge for the Formula One drivers' championship after his dominant victory in Sunday's Hungarian Grand Prix.

Hamilton's win at the Hungaroring, his second of the 2012 season, left the Briton fourth in the title race with 117 points, 47 behind Ferrari's double world champion Fernando Alonso at the top of the standings.

Despite the gap, Whitmarsh is backing the 2008 title winner to challenge for the championship over the year's remaining nine races.

"Although he's still a little way behind the drivers' world championship leader, he's now very well placed to mount an assault," Whitmarsh told the British team's official website. "Believe me, it's still all up for grabs.

Simulating the F1 experience
When Silver Arrows dominated F1

"Lewis drove with tremendous composure all afternoon, and the result was a meticulously judged victory, wrought under intense pressure throughout."

Hamilton, whose other race this season came in Canada in June, was delighted to have recorded the third Hungarian GP victory of his six-year F1 career.

"It was a really enjoyable race -- but it wasn't at all easy," said the 27-year-old. "In fact, I reckon that it was one of the toughest races I've ever driven -- but, guess what, I'll savour it all the more for that.

"Looking at the season as a whole, it's clear that after the midseason break we'll have a lot of work to do. But, for now, let's celebrate -- all of us, family, friends and fans -- and put on our Vodafone rocket-red tops, and enjoy the moment."

F1 teams and drivers now have five weeks to rest and recuperate before the season resumes with the Belgian Grand Prix at Spa on September 2.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
Track the buzz of the 2014 Formula One season, race by race, with all the latest social reaction from motorsport experts.
updated 12:14 PM EST, Fri November 7, 2014
Glitz... check, glamor... check. Teams going bust... er, check. F1 generates billion-dollar revenues, so why can't some of its teams stay afloat?
updated 1:14 PM EST, Fri November 7, 2014
With the sport currently facing up to a financial crisis, motorsport journalist Ed Foster explores the history of F1 sponsorship.
updated 5:58 AM EDT, Tue October 21, 2014
He's paid millions to drive one of the world's fastest cars, and he's one of F1's most colorful characters, but Kimi Raikkonen loves normality.
updated 1:45 PM EDT, Sun October 12, 2014
It took a little longer than expected but MotoGP's young star Marc Marquez wraps up his second world title in Japan.
updated 6:39 AM EDT, Thu October 9, 2014
Rising star Daniil Kvyat made history as the home hero at F1's first Russian Grand Prix, ahead of next season's move to Red Bull.
updated 9:58 AM EDT, Fri September 19, 2014
Take the fittest driver in Formula One and test him against two of the world's leading triathletes in a high-performance laboratory.
updated 12:04 PM EDT, Fri September 5, 2014
Mercedes has the fastest two cars in Formula One this season but there is just one problem -- there can only be one world champion.
He's the best of the rest -- Daniel Ricciardo has been Formula One's surprise package in the first half of the 2014 season.
updated 7:35 AM EDT, Thu July 24, 2014
Formula One is not likely to go hungry in Hungary as master chefs cater in volume for drivers, teams and VIP guests.
updated 10:43 AM EDT, Thu July 3, 2014
It's the elephant in the room of Formula One. What's the prognosis legendary driver Michael Schumacher?
updated 7:10 PM EDT, Fri May 23, 2014
It stimulates all five senses, creating an unparalleled experience for drivers and fans alike. Take a tour of Monaco with Mark Webber.
ADVERTISEMENT