McLaren says no team orders for Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button at Malaysian Grand Prix
|By Jonathan Noble||Sunday, March 25th 2012, 05:59 GMT|
McLaren has vowed not to interfere with any on-track battles between Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button - even though the pair look set to fight it out for another victory in Malaysia.
For the second race in succession, the British pair has taken the first two positions on the grid, and another strong result at Sepang would put McLaren in a strong position for championship glory.
But although there are always dangers of team-mates taking points off each other, or even colliding, McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh says he is happy to let Hamilton and Button deal with matters themselves.
"It's quite difficult to call off the fight between drivers," he explained. "We haven't done it traditionally. They both very strongly want to win this race, and they know it's a free race.
"On the pit wall over the last few years there have been a few moments when I've been getting lots of advice on what they should be doing. But generally we've allowed them to race and that's what people expect of us and what our drivers expect of the team."
Whitmarsh has also urged caution about the strong situation McLaren is in this year, and well aware that nothing is yet won in Malaysia.
"It's been an encouraging start, but we're only one race down. So let's not get ahead of ourselves.
"We've won one race and currently have not scored any points in Malaysia this year and we have 56 hard, hot, sticky laps ahead of us with all the challenge and the weather thrown in. We'd like to have a dry race, but this is Malaysia and things happen with the weather."