By Sarah Holt in Valencia and Lawrence BarrettoBBC Sport
European Grand Prix
Venue: Valencia Street Circuit, Valencia
Date: 24, 25 & 26 June
Coverage: Friday: First practice 0855-1035, BBC Red Button, Radio 5 live sports extra, online. Second practice 1255-1435 BBC Red Button, Radio 5 live sports extra, online. Saturday: Third practice 0955-1105 Red Button, Radio 5 live sports extra, online. Qualifying 1210-1415 BBC One, 5 live, online. Sunday - race coverage 1200-1535 BBC One, 5 live, online. F1 forum 1530-1630 Red Button & online. Highlights 1900-2000 BBC Three
Hamilton defends his driving style ahead of the European Grand Prix
McLaren driver Lewis Hamilton has rejected suggestions that he must win Sunday's European Grand Prix to get his world title campaign back on track.
Hamilton has slipped to fourth overall, three wins behind championship leader Sebastian Vettel of Red Bull.
Hamilton said: "If it's another bad one, it's another bad one, and there's nothing you can do about it.
"People can have bad weekends and you can bounce back. There is a long way to go. I'm not giving up any time soon."
Hamilton, 26, was involved in four separate incidents in the last two races in
and picked up just eight points from events he had been hoping to win.
He is now 76 points behind Vettel, and although Hamilton admitted he was "still massively focused on the championship", he did admit: "It definitely feels like it could be the hardest championship between now and the end of the season."
“I have not thought of myself in a Red Bull car or Red Bull (driving) suit”
Lewis HamiltonMcLaren driver
McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh said his driver was determined to come back stronger in Valencia.
But Whitmarsh said: "Lewis can win this weekend and I'm sure that's what he's determined to do.
"The last two races haven't gone the way he or the team would have liked but I don't think he's lost any form."
The 2008 world champion collided with Ferrari's Felipe Massa in Monaco before clashing with Williams driver Pastor Maldonado on his way to sixth place.
Two weeks later in Canada, the McLaren driver tipped Red Bull's Mark Webber into a spin on the first lap and was then forced into retirement after colliding with team-mate Jenson Button on the start-finish straight.
"I think that Lewis has had a couple of tough races but that's what happens in motor racing," added Whitmarsh ahead of this weekend's race in Valencia.
"He doesn't like not winning so he didn't particularly enjoy the last two race weekends.
"Lewis is a passionate, aggressive driver who is one of the most exciting in the world to watch and I don't think he's going to change his approach.
"He's certainly fired up and he looked in great shape when I saw him two nights' ago. He's very enthusiastic to have a great result this weekend."
"They [Red Bull] had their issues in the pits in Monaco a couple of times, putting the wrong tyres on the car, and obviously Sebastian [Vettel] ran wide on the last lap of the race," he said. "If we put them under pressure, maybe they will make more mistakes.
"We've got to keep doing that because if we don't, they'll be invincible because they're so fast and Sebastian is doing such a good job.
Whitmarsh said he was hopeful McLaren can close the gap on Red Bull in qualifying after governing body the FIA announced new regulations which prevent teams from changing their engine maps between qualifying and the race.
While McLaren have been close to Red Bull in the race in terms of pace, the gap has been bigger in qualifying, resulting in the latter taking every single pole position this season.
"There are some changes this weekend in that the FIA will enforce a strict parc ferme regulation which will mean that the car which qualifies will be the car that races," he added. "Based on that we should be hopeful."
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