Q & A with Lewis Hamilton
|By Jonathan Noble||Friday, October 2nd 2009, 09:58 GMT|
Q. How did you like the track?
Lewis Hamilton: I love the track. For me it's the best track I've ever driven. Obviously it's different to places like Monaco but otherwise it's something very, very special for me. I had a great time today even though it was wet. We weren't supposed to be running in the second session, but I couldn't help it. I had to go out and have a little bit of fun.
Q. Felipe Massa has said the he was robbed of the title last year and that he should be champion and not you. What do you think about that?
LH: First I have to say that it's good that he's recovering and back on his feet and back to his normal self and feeling good. I think all I can say is that it was a tough season, things happened, there were lots and lots of 'what ifs' throughout the season, so I'm a bit surprised to hear him say that, to be honest. I believe we had a fair battle throughout the season, so I'm a bit surprised. It doesn't matter to me what he says, really.
Q. What was it like driving at Suzuka for the first time?
LH: The track is very special. I've always wanted to drive here since the very, very early early stages. When I was watching Formula 1 I think I already noticed this circuit. I remember what happened here in '89 in the last chicane [sic]. Yesterday I was standing on the chicane thinking 'wow, this is where one of the incidents happened with Ayrton and Prost'.
There's such great history here and this is the one track I hadn't been to, so it's been exciting for me to come here. I enjoyed it. My first couple of lap were very quick. The car doesn't feel terrible, which is a good sign. But it's a bit wet at the moment, although they say it's going to be a dry race. I'm just looking forward to run in the dry and see how hard you can push on this track.
Q. How do you feel about Felipe's comments and what would you say to him really?
LH: Like I was saying, it's good to see that he's recovering. Everyone here is happy he's doing well and that he's making a strong recovery and we've all missed him and we are all looking forward to have him back. I'm kind of shocked to hear him say that, because I've always felt he was quite a fair driver and he knows we had a fair battle right to the end. At least that's how I saw it.
Q. How do you rate Kimi Raikkonen as a driver?
LH: He's clearly one of the best here.
Q. And would it be a challenge of having him as a team-mate?
LH: Racing him is always a challenge, so.
Q. How are you approaching the weekend after winning in Singapore?
LH: Feels good to be here and it's exciting to have the back-to-back races. I've been dying to get out on his track for years and I'm so happy that we are back at Suzuka. This track is fantastic. It's an incredible circuit. I really can't describe it.
Q. So what's the plan for this weekend?
LH: It's a natural circuit that should favour the Red Bulls and the Brawns. It's quite a good downforce circuit. They should be very quick here generally. But I wouldn't say that we are out of the run for at least a podium, so we are here to win, as always.
Q. Fernando and Felipe are likely to be your main opposition next year. How do you rate them?
LH: It's going to be one of best line-ups. I think Kimi and Felipe were obviously strong couple. It's going to be a tough season battling both of them. It will be interesting, but don't forget we are still a mega team, so we'll have some answers to that.