McLaren: Hamilton not looking to leave

Lewis Hamilton and his father-manager Anthony have given no indication to McLaren management that they are looking for a way out of their current contract

McLaren: Hamilton not looking to leave

That is the claim from McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh, in the wake of reports this morning that Hamilton has been so disenchanted by his involvement in the controversy surrounding the outfit that he wanted to leave the team.

"I have read some stories this morning, but I have obviously spoken to Lewis on quite a few occasions and Anthony," said Whitmarsh, when asked about a story in The Sunday Times saying Hamilton considered quitting F1 over the matter.

"We are here trying to do a job and go racing and this has been quite a distracting influence, but in all of those conversations from Anthony and Lewis the commitment to this team has not altered.

"It's been extreme and there has been no hint of what has been reported this morning, so at the moment I don't believe what has been reported."

Despite his belief that Hamilton remains totally committed to the team, Whitmarsh has confessed that McLaren needs to learn fast from the events that have overshadowed the Malaysian GP.

"I think what we do know is as a team we have got to learn from the mistakes that have been made," he said. "I have got to learn. I have made mistakes, I said it on Friday and I'm saying it here.

"I have to represent the team, I have to apologise on behalf of the team to you guys, to the public, to the FIA. And I have to apologise on my own behalf because on Thursday I hadn't done my homework, I was ill-prepared and I made some mistakes. Lewis has done the same.

"It's been a pretty tough time for him, we have been trying to deal with this and allow Lewis to concentrate on doing the best job we can here, we are a racing team trying to go motor racing."

He added: "So everything that Anthony and Lewis have said to me has been incredibly supportive, appreciative of what this team has done for them and there has been no hint of anything that they've said that would cause me to believe that they would contemplate for this or any other reason.

"Now something different has been reported in the media, but a leading part of that was that he had spoken directly to Max. I don't believe that happened because Anthony told us minutes ago that there was no truth in that story."

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