• European Grand Prix

Hamilton 'definitely in the fight'

ESPNF1 Staff
June 24, 2011 « Red Bull still favourite for pole - Alonso | »
Lewis Hamilton says he can still find more pace © Getty Images

Lewis Hamilton says that McLaren is in contention for victory once again this weekend after setting the second fastest time during practice for the European Grand Prix.

While Red Bull has taken pole at every race so far this season, Hamilton and team-mate Jenson Button have been able to take a win apiece. Hamilton said that it had been difficult to judge performance in Valencia as the track was very dusty early on, but that once it cleaned up later in the afternoon session he felt McLaren had the pace to challenge at the front.

"It was very slippery out there today," Hamilton said. "In P2, the grip was a little lower because the new Prime tyre proved a bit tricky to switch on. But once we fitted the Option tyre, it was much easier to drive and we seemed to have some pretty decent pace."

Hamilton also said he expected to find more performance as the weekend progressed, highlighting the balance as one area that needed improving.

"There are still plenty of improvements we can make to the car. We need to work on the balance; it's not a million miles away, but it could be better. There are some things we'll change this evening to make it more stable. It looks very tight up at the front but we're definitely in the fight, which is the important thing. I think we've got some more pace up our sleeves for the rest of the weekend, too."