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Hamilton gets Macca seat for 2

Formula One
by Machiavelli (U4237419) 24 November 2006
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posted Nov 25, 2006

I'm quite confident

that Lewis is ready in all meaningful respects. It is unlike of the McLaren we've known to hire a rookie; but anyone who has had more than a passing interest in GP2 will have recognized that Hamilton is an asset to any F1 team. He has shown creativity behind the wheel, something that few can manifest clearly. F1 is not forgiving, but at least Hamilton has shown to be able to recover from mistakes. In GP2, often those could be compensated during the race. In his rookie year, it will suffice if he recovers for the next race.

I thought that this piece, "Lewis Hamilton by Lewis Hamilton" was a worthwhile read. Provides nice insights into how far his history with Rosberg and Kubica extends, too. Some 20 years from now, in hindsight they could prove to be yet another "golden generation" in F1. Very different drivers and backrounds, all very capable in their own unique ways.

Ron knows his time as team owner and manager is depleting fast, and he's bringing in all the talent he can muster for a grand finale. Knowing Alonso, it is unrealistic to expect his driving style and setup (or the way of how he sees the relationship between a driver and his team) to benefit Hamilton hugely. Alonso has also indicated some realism as to how long his involvement with Macca, and indeed F1, can last. It remains to be seen whether McLaren's brashness was in part due to the inevitable changes that will follow in a couple of years (after already being left reeling from a few high profile defections) or a successful appraisal of the positives and negatives. Renault, who have taken a different route with Kovalainen, will provide an interesting comparison indeed.

The 30.000 km testing limit could prove to be a bit problematic for Macca, though. They might run out of available testing miles to satisfy two new drivers, whereas their competition has at least one established driver at the ready. No doubt Lewis will have to be given every testing chance available prior and after New Year's and as Alonso can only start testing in 2007, he'll be playing catch-up and only have a minor direct effect in preseason car design. Unlimited Friday testing could alleviate this somewhat, but only at a cost to tyre and setup resources.

I'm sure PdlR is a professional and him "losing" the seat to Hamilton will have no immediate effect on their relationship. But, it is foreseeable that because of his cultural backround his communicative abilies at the very least will suit Alonso's purposes better. Paffet's role is diminished and he might well have just a part time role, driving DTM "on the side".

Thus a true McLaren loyal and veteran in the form of Hakkinen enters the picture. He can provide Hamilton with the sort of tutelage and firepower he will need to evolve as a driver and challenge his team mate whereas RD's support will be more institutional and managerial. Mika is as much a friend and protégé of RD’s as Hamilton. And to highlight, still, why Hakkinen might provide a good tutor for Hamilton ... Mika does have experiences to share of his time pairing a champion, Senna that is, at McLaren - even if it wasn't as much as a race driver as a test driver. And he beat Senna in his first quali for McLaren, after all.

It remains to be seen how fast Hamilton will end up challenging for poles and wins. McLaren has its share of design worries. As far as unrealistic expectations go, they kind of go with the field, don't they? There's just one WDC per season, after all. Just another facet of the F1 existence to come to terms with - how to adjust high expectations and realities so that the eventual external jadedness about stated ambitions doesn't become an internal reality of justified unattainability, the ultimate excuse of statistical pessimism? In the intermediate, it might indeed appear to be "too much too soon". But It's up to Lewis, Ron to transcend that in a true test of character.

Hamilton seems firmly committed to Macca, and in time the question might not be of the endurance of his attachement to the team, but that of Ron's. Hopefully they have the stamina to push and motivate each other for as long as it takes. The stage is now set for yet another big upset; within McLaren and within F1. And the lineage of Dennis, Whitmarsh, Hakkinen and Hamilton might well deliver it.

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posted Nov 25, 2006

Ron Dennis bowed to pressure in 1995 when he took on a certain Nigel Mansell.That lasted 2 or 3 races before "Our Nige" spat the dummy and parked his car,never to race in F1 again.Lewis Hamilton is as sure a bet for stardom as any driver I've seen in 30 odd years,that includes Schumacher and Alonso.

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posted Nov 25, 2006

This is the most exciting driver line up in F1 since Ron Dennis put Prost and Senna in the same team.

The only way is up for Mclaren KR and JPM had shockingly pure development skills and workrate in testing

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posted Nov 25, 2006

Nigel Mansell claims in his book that he left McLaren because they had a no hope car which neede a complete redesign immediately after what they said was a complete redesign. Since he had never wanted to just make up the numbers he quit.

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comment by stewwd (U6711734)

posted Nov 25, 2006

Great news for an obviously talented young driver! However the cynic in me cant help thinking that economics must have been to the front of Ron Dennis's mind. After all Alonso @ £??MILLION plus Hamilton on YTS money = an affordable average.
That said if Maclarens can perform by producing 2 reliable cars, it will be a very interesting debut year for Lewis. - I cant wait !!!

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comment by duncan (U1644755)

posted Nov 25, 2006

Lewis will be world champion; and by end of next season will be beating Alsono if the car is good enough he will win races he is a real talent.

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posted Nov 26, 2006

There is no doubt Mr. Hamilton has the potential to compete at the highest level, however I believe he should have been given some time -at least a year- as a test driver to polish that talent before trying to match skills with drivers far more experienced than he.

I hope its not too much too soon. Still, I can't wait to see the lad in action.


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posted Nov 27, 2006

Hamilton should be commended for having made it to the epitome of what must be the most arduous of all the classes in motorsports. But having made it there one would hope that he doesn't become too complacent and think having got there evrything will be easy. It won't and I don't believe that Dennis and the rest of the people at McLaren will allow him to become foolhardy and think that this is it ! The light criticism coming from the likes Coulthard is to be expected but that's what tends to happen when we produce someone who's promising but not everyone is prepared to believe that fact. He's not going to be rushed into anything he can't handle by the team. I don't think that they're prepared to waste that much as an investment in this young man's future.biggrin

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posted Nov 28, 2006

adiereds80, you're completely mistaken on race issues. Narain Kartikheyan is Indian, not from African oringin. Narain is not black! So, Lewis Hamilton might as well be the first one, for sure!

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posted Jun 17, 2007

what do you think now guys????

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