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Downbeat Hamilton doubts Silverstone repeat

ESPN Staff
July 4, 2013 « Understanding new tyres will be key to victory - Alonso | Button coy on Red Bull link »
Lewis Hamilton: "We've got a competitive car, I've just got a lot on my mind at the moment; it's been a tough week." © Sutton Images
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Lewis Hamilton says he's not sure he can repeat his Silverstone performance at this weekend's German Grand Prix.

Hamilton took pole position for the British Grand Prix by 0.452s and looked to be comfortable in the lead before he suffered a tyre failure and was relegated to the back of the grid. Despite an impressive recovery drive to fourth place, Hamilton said his struggles with the Mercedes have not been solved and he has much more potential than he's been able to show.

"I don't know if I'm going to get that for a while," Hamilton said. "I really don't know. It was a nice lap, but I've not been feeling 100% in this car for some reason. It's the first year in my life that I've not felt 100% in a car, but considering the results that I've had so far with that feeling I'm excited for the rest of the year. I'm working very hard to overcome it and to extract the most from the car, so when I do I'm looking forward to seeing the results."

When pushed on whether the issues were still brake-related, Hamilton admitted he's at a loss as to why he's not comfortable in the car.

"I really don't know what it is. When you drive a Formula One car you really need to feel connected to it to be able to throw it in to places that other people can't; that's how you gain the advantage. It's an incredible car just not as easy as what I've experienced before because I drove a car for a long period of time so every year it evolved - the brake setup evolved, the seat position evolved, the control systems evolved to how I liked to use it - and I've just arrived in a car that's been developed for [last year's drivers] Nico [Rosberg] and for Michael [Schumacher], so it's taking some time to adapt it to how I like to drive."

While he was competitive at Silverstone, Hamilton said he's wary of a repeat of Red Bull's dominance from the Canadian Grand Prix.

"I'd like to think we have [solved the tyre issues]. As I said going in to Silverstone we brought a new upgrade to help look after the tyres and it seems to have worked; we'll continue to develop that and to try and improve it more. We have similar tyres that we had in Montreal and Sebastian [Vettel] pulled away by half a second a lap in Montreal, so of course I'm nervous that that's going to happen again. I hope that doesn't happen again, but we're just going to keep pushing. We hopefully have some improvements to the car again this weekend, so we are definitely on the road to sorting these tyres out."

With problems in his personal life well documented, Hamilton contradicted himself but insists he is solely focused on trying to win this weekend.

"No I don't have anything playing on my mind. I want to win, that's all that's on my mind this weekend as it is every weekend. I know we've got a good car, we've got a competitive car, I've just got a lot on my mind at the moment; it's been a tough week."

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