Lewis Hamilton

Lewis Hamilton

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Lewis Hamilton: Best When Behind The Visor

Lewis Hamilton: Best When Behind The Visor

Lewis Hamilton, viewed by many as one of the fastest drivers to ever grace an F1 car. Phenomenal performances and aggressive racing, Lewis has brought some serious entertainment to World Championships of late. For this you’d expect him to be universally admired, yet there seems to exist more dislike for him than you might expect. So what does Lewis have to do to gain full respect amongst the world’s elite racers?

I like Lewis Hamilton I really do, and that would not normally be expected for someone who has a soft spot for a pair of scarlet red cars. I often find myself admiring Lewis as a driver, but outside of the car he really hasn’t made it easy for himself to become very popular. You may remember Lewis’ misinformed accusation that Jenson Button, his team mate at the time, had unfollowed him on twitter. It was an incredibly awkward mistake that inevitably led to an embarrassing apology. You may also remember when Lewis revealed secret McLaren telemetry on his Twitter account, which created visible tension between McLaren’s seniors and himself. Both of these very public incidents seemed to show a slightly hot headed Lewis that was unsurprisingly harder to like than say, the Felipe Massas of this world (what a nice guy).

Thankfully, Lewis now seems to take an air of caution with his words on Twitter, recently only creating offence to the eyes of followers through his decisions to post pictures of himself dressed like an East Coast rapper. Although I suppose dressing in his native Stevenage colours wouldn’t improve the situation much (Air Max tracksuits aren’t great on a grown man).

Lewis has suffered ’hiccups’ in other areas however, not least with the press. The lowest point came after his Ali G comments resulted in an unintentional racism storm back in 2011. Perhaps as a result of that, it does seem that he has now begun to manage his answers when faced with tricky questions, meaning he’s joined the ranks of drivers who shield their true feelings behind a wall of generic "we’ll see" and "maybe" responses. In many ways this is a shame as most fans want to see real emotion from drivers, but it’s sure to keep the teams and particularly the sponsors happy, and they write the cheques!

Nevertheless, in my opinion Lewis doesn’t even have to say anything to the cameras, or have to add a new twist to his Tweets; he just has to drive. I mean there’s no denying it, Lewis is fantastic behind the wheel. From looking across his entire career, Lewis has demonstrated raw talent and natural speed in a range of racing machinery. It is true that he was fortunate enough to have had a push and significant funding from McLaren to get him to where he is today, but nothing can take from the fact he has demonstrated his worthiness and ability throughout. Even ignoring his successful junior years, his arrival in F1 was more than spectacular. Partnered with World Champion Fernando Alonso at McLaren, it was fair to assume it would be a very steep learning curve for Lewis. This didn’t seem to phase him however, as he even managed to beat Fernando with competence and control not normally seen until several years into a driver’s F1 career. We can’t forget that had it not been for just a couple of costly errors and unlucky mechanical issues, Lewis could have been F1’s first rookie World Champion.

"But he’s always been in a competitive car" I hear you say. This is true for the most part, but even if we were to ignore the results and focus entirely on his driving, his on track ability is nothing short of outstanding. Of all the current F1 drivers, his choice to set up the car in such a way that allows it to move about underneath him, creates some of the most fantastic on board footage and highly impressive driving. His style seems to be most prominent when he is on the absolute limit, where he seems comfortable with a significant amount of rear slip. This style was even evident not long ago on the BBC’s own Top Gear, where Lewis managed to reduce the fastest Top Gear track lap time in the ’very normal’ Suzuki Liana, by over 1 second. Stick him in anything on 4 wheels, and you can be confident Lewis will wring its neck.

So despite his colourful antics in the paddock and less than perfect image, when he sticks on the helmet and is belted into his car, I am a big Lewis Hamilton fan. Let’s hope that 2013 will be the time he does the talking on track (but not in the Kimi Raikkonen "leave me alone" sense however!). Maybe then Formula 1’s wider fanbase will begin to finally accept Lewis for what he really is, a phenomenally talented racing driver and wholly deserving World Champion.

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Video: Lewis Hamilton - End of an Era

Most of you probably know that as of 2012 racing season Lewis Hamilton’s career with McLaren ended and that starting 2013 racing season he will move to Mercedes AMG. As a tribute to his McLaren era and in honor of his birthday, we now present you a compilation with the greatest memories of the Lewis Hamilton-McLaren partnership.

Lewis Hamilton has scored some amazing results in his racing career with McLaren, such as his 2007 win at the Hungarian Grand Prix from pole position, in 2008 he won the Australian Grand Prix and the Belgian Grand Prix, and the list could go on like this forever. It’s true he also had a series of incidents, like the most recent one during the 2012 Brazilian Grand Prix, but his overall performance under the McLaren colors was pretty impressive.

So, kick back and enjoy reliving the moments of one of the more successful partner ships in recent F1 history.

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Mercedes Signs Lewis Hamilton and Will Not Renew Schumacher

Mercedes Signs Lewis Hamilton and Will Not Renew Schumacher

After a successful run with McLaren, Lewis Hamilton became likely the hottest free agent in recent F1 history. There was a lot of debating and speculation that Hamilton had already signed with Mercedes, who only just recently signed the Concorde Agreement after rumors that it may leave F1, and that McLaren refused to match. It looks as if all of the Hamilton-to-Mercedes rumors were true, as Mercedes has officially announced the signing of Hamilton through the 2016 season.

This signing comes on the heels of McLaren, Hamilton’s former employer, announcing that it had signed the up-and-coming Sergio Perez. An unfortunate byproduct of Mercedes bringing in this young blood means the old blood, in the form of Michael Schumacher, is out of a job. There is some speculation that Schumacher will head back into retirement, but other rumors are placing him with Sauber, taking the spot vacated by Sergio Perez’s jettison to McLaren. Ah, and the evil circle of F1 continues…

It is up for debate as to whether Mercedes or McLaren got the better end of the deal, as you have a proven talent in Hamilton who had some struggles last year. But on the other hand you have the 22-year-old Perez with an impressive three podium trips last year and is heading into the prime of his career.

Either way, both Mercedes and McLaren got their guys and both Hamilton and Perez will likely continue strong in the coming years. Also announced today by Mercedes is that 3-time F1 champ, Nikki Lauda, will join Mercedes as a non-executive chairman.

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Video: McLaren Tooned - Episodes 02 and 03

It’s been a couple of weeks since we saw the first episode of McLaren’s animated series featuring Formula 1 stars Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton. Now, it’s time for episodes 2 and 3 of the series.

Episode 2 is called "Slicks" and takes Lewis and Jenson to the McLaren Technology Center for some hi-jinx with safety features, while Episode 3 - called "Track to the Future" - shows off the future of the race car. In both episodes, Jenson and Lewis are still up to their old tricks and bring an onslaught of hilarity to an otherwise weird McLaren production.

McLaren will launch a new episode every week during the British GP and the animated series actually airs on SKY Sports F1.

Hit the jump to watch Episode 03.

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Video: Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton star in McLaren's animation short 'Tooned'

Video: Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton star in McLaren’s animation short ’Tooned’

McLaren has proved to be one of the more marketing savvy teams in the F1 grid these days.

Their latest venture, an animation short starring Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton, is another home run in our books.

Titled "Tooned," the animated short series made its debut at the British Grand Prix on Sky Sports F1 last weekend. In this episode, Button, Hamilton, and Professor M - think McLaren’s version of a quirky scientist - all go to McLaren’s underground testing circuit to give the new McLaren F1 car a testing shakedown.

Button proceeds to win the coin toss to get first dibs on the car, but true to Hamilton’s always competitive nature, he somehow commandeers a rocket-powered F1 prototype to race Button in what turned out to be an "explosive" race. Not content with the finish, the two then proceed to use the "super-soft" tires to bound their way to the finish line, much to the chagrin of the clearly perturbed Professor M.

It’s a funny video that shows the lighter side of the McLaren F1 team. Well worth your time to check out!

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2012 Grand Prix of Monaco is in the books

2012 Grand Prix of Monaco is in the books

As always, the Grand Prix of Monaco provided a fairly spectacular showing, likely one of the few in this year’s F1 series. As most would expect, Circuit de Monaco lap-time record holder and five-time winner, Michael Schumacher took the pole position, but officials forced him back five grid positions after he caused a collision during qualifying. With the technical nature of Monaco, that pole position is very important and Schumacher’s penalty was an ominous sign that this would not be a good race, as he retired due to fuel issues 63 laps in.

Schumacher’s penalty propelled Red Bull’s Mark Webber into the pole position. Webber held onto that pole position, despite a lead change during a pit stop, and took home the checkered flag on a rain-coated Circuit de Monaco. As we said in our preview of the 2012 Grand Prix of Monaco, this race had some serious overall points influence, as the leaders were only separated by a few points each.

This victory for Webber places propels him up to a second place tie with Sebastian Vettel at 73 points and puts Fernando Alonso, who finished third, in the points lead at 76. An impressive run by Nico Rosberg placed him in second, just behind Webber, proving that his wide margin of victory in China was not just a one-time deal. This superb finish by Rosberg jumps him up two slots to fifth place overall.

From the looks of it, this season is shaping up to be a rather close points race with a few new faces near the top. Unfortunately, the leader board, for the most part, looks identical to the 2011 and 2010 seasons. The lack of parody in F1 has really been its Achilles heel in recent history. An overall points victory by Nico Rosberg would certainly be a push in the right direction for F1, so we’ll keep a close eye on his performance.

Click past the jump to see the complete placement board for the 2012 Grand Prix of Monaco and the overall points standings.

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Car Infographics: F1 Cars and Teams in 2012

Car Infographics: F1 Cars and Teams in 2012

We just love infographics because they are created to inform readers of different facts and figures on a particular topic. This infographic, however, takes that love to a whole new level by being the most complete and informative infographic we have ever seen. It breaks down the details of the 2012 F1 season, even going into the different cars and drivers.

Ever wonder what an F1 car consists of? Take a look at the very first section of this infographic. Want to know what kind of changes F1 drivers and teams had to prepare for in the 2012 season? This list goes into all of them, including the new nose height requirement of being 550mm above the base of the car to avoid a T-bone crash.

The rest of the infographic goes into the incredible precision driving on a Formula One cricuit, facts people may not know, details about the cars and drivers, and the entire race calendar, including preseason testing results at Jerez and Barcelona.

Check out the rest of the infographic to get more helpful information and remember to check back with us for the next installment in our Car Infographics series.

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2013 Pagani Zonda 760 LH

It’s no secret that Formula 1 drivers are some of the most highly paid sportsmen in the world. With some contracts topping $10 million without taking into account individual sponsorships, F1 drivers could literally swim in money. One of the most interesting things about this is that many F1 drivers just drive regular, everyday cars, rather than sports cars as everything feels slow when compared to an F1 car.

However, if reports are to be believed, 2008 world champion Lewis Hamilton may have just purchased a road-car as close to an F1 car as you can get, the Pagani Zonda. And, no not just any old Zonda, but a one-off car built specifically for him reportedly called the 760 LH, and it doesn’t take a genius to work out what the ‘LH’ stands for.

Hamilton’s car is said to be based upon the 760 RS which was recently commissioned and built for a very special Chilean owner. The 760 RS is the most powerful production car Pagani has built to date, even surpassing the Huayra by about 60BHP, pumping out an incredible 760 horsepower. The car ordered by Hamilton differs in one major way to the RS, as it will be built with a traditional manual transmission, leading the McLaren driver to state, “my company car has a paddle-change gearbox, so when I drive for fun, I want a manual.”

It’s unclear just how long Hamilton will have to wait for his brand new hypercar, but considering the Zonda is built completely by hand, he’ll be lucky to have it delivered in the next six months. It’s also worth noting that Horacio Pagani has previously stated that one-off Zonda’s will continued to be made if demand is there, despite the Huayra now being the company’s flagship supercar.

Please note that the car featured is the Pagani Zonda F Clubsport Final Edition.

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2012 McLaren MP4-27 Formula 1 Race Car

2012 McLaren MP4-27 Formula 1 Race Car

McLaren has unveiled their new MP4-27 Formula 1 Race Car that will be used during the 2012 FIA Formula 1 World Championship. This year, the car will be driven by the two world champions: Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton.

The new MP4-27 is a natural evolution of last year’s six-race-winning car, but it has received a number of modifications in order to comply with the new FIA regulations. The 2012 chassis has been substantially revised from the ground-up, with all major systems updated or re-designed for the new season. The racing car has also received more tightly waisted rear bodywork, developed to improve flow to the rear of the car, and a revised cooling system, which re-directs the gearbox oil-cooler. The U-shaped sidepods from last year’s model have also been re-designed due to the new exhaust regulations.

The McLaren MP4-27 Formula 1 Race Car will begin testing on Tuesday February 7th, 2012 at Spain’s Circuito de Jerez with Jenson Button behind the wheel.

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Babes On Wheels: Nicole Scherzinger tames a Lamborghini Diablo

Babes On Wheels: Nicole Scherzinger tames a Lamborghini Diablo

Nobody cares if Nicole Scherziner’s last name is hard to spell or pronounce; the former lead singer of the Pussycat Dolls is still one of the most beautiful people on the planet.

She’s so hot, in fact, that when she poses with a Lamborghini Diablo, it takes us a moment before we can leave her gaze to notice the iconic Lamborghini supercar.

In addition to once being the headline of the Pussycat Dolls, Scherzinger has also made a name for herself as the winner of the tenth season of Dancing With The Stars. Oh and she’s also the hot girlfriend of no less than McLaren F1 driver and former Driver’s Champion, Lewis Hamilton.

There’s no question that the Hawaiian-born Filipino-American has the whole package to make millions drool. But for us that love our cars, seeing this goddess of a woman flirting on a Lamborghini Diablo is the stuff that fantasies are made of.

Meow, indeed!

Check out more photos in the gallery below!

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Mobil 1 Track Challenge car game is out

Mobil 1 Track Challenge car game is out

The weekend is here and if you’re looking to find a fun way to spend your time then check out the new game called "Mobil 1 Track Challenge." This has to be the coolest game we have seen in a very long time because it gives players the ability to choose from a list of extraordinary drivers, including F1’s Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton and NASCAR’s Tony Stewart and Ryan Newman.

The graphics aren’t cheesy like a lot of online games and you get to choose from hundreds of tracks to race on. Players can even build their own track and play along with their friends. All they have to do is sign in under the wide range of social sites available and get to work. There’s even personalized clips from the champion drivers!

To start, choose your professional driver and start your engines! The arrow keys are used to navigate the vehicle and the space bar is used for the brake. Maneuvering the up arrow to accelerate and the left and right arrows to turn at the same time is a bit tricky, but you get the hang of it once you really get going.

Click here to play Mobil 1 Track Challenge.

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Video: Tony Stewart and Lewis Hamilton to switch cars in new Mobil 1 campaign

In the world of crossover drivers, a lot of people have wondered how a Formula One driver can fare driving a stripped down NASCAR stock car and a NASCAR driver can handle the technology of a Formula One race car. It’s a scenario that we’ve all wondered and now, thanks to Mobil 1, we might find our answer.

The motorsport oil company and sponsor for both the McLaren F1 team and the Stewart-Haas NASCAR team have come out with a marketing campaign that has the Formula One Champion and the 2-time Sprint Cup Winner taking the other driver’s car to see how they can fare in uncharted cockpits. Will Tony Stewart be able to understand the technology employed in the MP4-26? How will Lewis Hamilton react to driving Stewart’s #14 stock car and all the bumps and bruises it’s bound to come in?

These questions will soon be answered in Mobil 1’s running campaign. For now, check out the teaser video to see how the two ace drivers size up each other and their respective rides.

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McLaren May Support Hamilton

McLaren May Support Hamilton

The truth has finally come out from McLaren, as they have just admitted that they might reconsider their decision to support both Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button during the course of the Brazilian Grand Prix.

The team had stated that they would support Button, despite the fact that the driver is just about out of the contention for the championship. Hamilton is in much better shape at the moment and the team may need Button to help him out during the race.

"We’ll see what the situation is during the race," said boss Martin Whitmarsh to the BBC.

At the moment, Hamilton is only 21 points back of Fernando Alonso, while Button is 42 points back with only 50 points up for grabs, so it would make sense to give Hamilton everything he needs to help run down the Ferrari.

"We’ll see what happens over the course of the weekend," added Whitmarsh. "There’s a good relationship between the two drivers. I’m sure they are going to co-operate with each other.”

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McLaren Says They Will Support Button

McLaren Says They Will Support Button

McLaren have just confirmed that they will back Jenson Button in his title defense at the Brazilian Grand Prix, despite the English driver being 42 points behind with only 50 points up for grabs.

His teammate, Lewis Hamilton, is only 21 points behind and could use the support of Button, but that’s just not going to happen.

"He has vowed to fight on and we will be supporting him fully next weekend," said McLaren boss Martin Whitmarsh to the BBC.

"Jenson knows you can’t lift the title without being a resolute fighter."

Button knows that it’s a long shot, but he has said that he wouldn’t be able to forgive himself if he backed down and did not try and defend his title. He has stated that he will continue to fight until it’s mathematically impossible for him to win.

Currently, Fernando Alonso sits atop of the standings, with Mark Webber, Hamilton, and Sebastian Vettel close behind. Webber is currently the closest to Alonso, as he is only down 11 points.

Despite being so far down and behind four other drivers, Button remains upbeat.

"It’s totally possible I could win at Interlagos, take home maximum points and have none of the other title contenders finish, he said to the BBC.

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Jenson Button's hopes dashed; Hamilton still in the running

Jenson Button’s hopes dashed; Hamilton still in the running

McLaren’s Jenson Button feels like his title hopes are all but gone, after he finished 12th in the Korean Grand Prix.

Button is now 42 points behind the leader, Fernando Alonso, with only 50 points still on the table. Despite this, Button has vowed to keep fighting, despite his belief that everyone will need to have failures in order to get back into title contention.

His teammate, Lewis Hamilton, remains confident in his chances and feels that the new updates that are going for his car will help McLaren remain competitive with the Ferrari and Red Bull machines.

"We can still do this," said Hamilton to the BBC. "We have some stuff coming on the car which should enable us to fight with Red Bull in Brazil and Abu Dhabi."

Hamilton is currently 21 points behind Alonso, but drivers now get 25 points for winning a race. If Hamilton can take the last two races, he might have a great shot at taking his second career championship.

Full story after the jump.

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Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton take a 1966 Volkswagen Cargot on a roadtrip to Silverstone

We rarely see two teammates in Formula One – and two former world champions at that – have a good time around each other and make it all seem so genuine. We learned that firsthand from the failed Lewis Hamilton-Fernando Alonso fiasco a few years back that pretty much divided McLaren Mercedes in half.

But now that the team has two chaps that have an unabashed chemistry, McLaren’s principal sponsor, Vodafone, isn’t wasting the opportunity to put both Hamilton and teammate Jenson Button in front of a camera for a number of short documentaries to highlight their growing number of escapades.

The latest mini-documentary to be released by McLaren takes the antics of Lewis and Jenson out on the road on-board a 1966 Volkswagen Camper. The new spot featuring both drivers takes the two on a nice little drive to Silverstone where they do, among other things, stop over at a gas station to get their tanks filled, buy as many chocolate candies they could get their hands on, sign as many autographs as they can, and even give away free tickets for the Silverstone Grand Prix.

Check out these two fellas as they make their way over to Silverstone in an unconventional way.

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Video: Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button visits the McLaren garage and become fans again

Video: Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button visits the McLaren garage and become fans again

You know what people say about heroes? Our heroes of today had heroes of their own back in the day. That’s how the current crop of athletes have become the best at what they do; they had role models to look up to when they were young. If you’re one of the current crop of Formula One drivers, there’s one name that comes to mind: the late, great Ayrton Senna.

Jenson Button andLewis Hamilton are arguably two of the biggest names in F1 these days. But at one point, they too were racing fans – and Senna fans at that. So when they were able to take a look inside the historic McLaren garage – home to the team’s historic racecars from yesteryear - you kind of expected that they would gravitate towards one that belonged to a certain former World Champion.

Ayrton Senna.

And for two of the most charismatic drivers in the F1 grid today, it was a rare moment of silent contemplation given the rich tradition and long history that they were surrounded in. And to be honest, it was a side of both Button and Hamilton that we actually enjoyed.

For a moment, they were just like us: race fans who had the opportunity to sit in the same seat that they’re beloved hero once occupied.

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Vettel wins in Spain

Vettel wins in Spain

Sebastian Vettel and Red Bull are back on top of the world after qualifying on pole and winning the European Grand Prix. Things didn’t go so well for his teammate though.

Vettel and Webber had been on pole for nearly every single race except for Canada, which Lewis Hamilton won last week.

Yet, the young German dominated the final qualifying session and then proceeded to dominate the quite dull race, winning for just the second time this season.

His teammate Mark Webber came in last after a horrific wreck saw his Red Bull take off into the air after colliding with the rear of a Lotus. On top of that, nine cars are under investigation because of speeding behind the safety car.

Lewis Hamilton finished second after a brilliant drive following a penalty for backing up the field. He was given a drive through but came out in the same spot he went in, second.

Jenson Button finished third after running in fourth behind Kamui Kobayashi nearly the entire race. The Japanese driver chose not to pit until the final few laps. After his stop, Kobayashi passed Fernando Alonso and Sebastian Buemi for seventh place.

Hit the jump for the rest of the story.

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Video: Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton take their shot in assembling a Formula One car

For those of you who think that a Formula One mechanic’s job isn’t all that important, you might want to spend the next three minutes watching this hilarious video of McLaren drivers Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton - two world champions, no less - trying to assemble a McLaren F1 car without the help of their trusty mechanics. Sound easy? Guess again.

How ironic is it that the two men tasked to race these cars can’t even get to finish assembling them without a few minor mishaps and a number of calls to their mechanics asking for some pointers. The video is a commercial done by the team’s principal sponsor, Vodafone, to show just how important it is to establish a good network, not just between members of the team, but apparently, with members of the sponsors as well.

For what it’s worth, though, it’s a pretty funny video to watch because it sure looks like these two race car drivers are in over their heads and have no clue as to how to assemble the cars they drive. Sure, they managed to piece everything together, but Lord knows if they did it exactly the way they should.

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Ferrari boss furious after grand prix

Ferrari boss furious after grand prix

When a team like Scuderia Ferrari is upset in Formula One, people are going to hear about it one way or another. Ferrari president Luca Di Montezemolo was furious at the new, slower teams in F1 after Fernando Alonso was held up during the Canadian Grand Prix.

Alonso was trying to pass Lewis Hamilton after the leading McLaren went into the pits after a bit of pressure from Alonso.

Yet, the Spaniard was slowed down by one of the slower teams on his in lap and he eventually came out of the pits behind Hamilton, who would later win the race.

Things kept getting worse for Alonso, who lost second to Jenson Button after he was slowed down by another slow newcomer.

The Italian boss was livid with the new boys after the race had finished, having seen his driver’s chance at a win slip away with the help of the slower cars.

"Cars who perform at GP2-level should not be allowed to participate in F1 races because they are supposed to race on Sunday mornings," he told Gazzetta dello Sport.

"Our car’s race pace was good enough for victory.

"Let’s hope that, in the future, there won’t be mistakes in pushing a button nor in lapping cars that put us at a disadvantage, because we’ve already gone though that."

Alonso has one win in his first season with Ferrari and is currently fourth in the points behind Mark Webber and the two McLaren drivers.

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