• McLaren news

Hamilton will bounce back before end of 2011 - Whitmarsh

ESPNF1 Staff
October 10, 2011 « Ferrari to test 2012 parts at remaining races | Red Bull not taking constructors' title for granted »
Lewis Hamilton: "Am I in the best place in my life? No, there's been a lot of negative stories" © Getty Images

McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh is convinced Lewis Hamilton's recent dip in form is just a blip and has tipped him to bounce back with a victory before the end of the season.

The McLaren driver has scored 44 points over the past five races whereas team-mate Jenson Button has taken 101, including two victories in Hungary and Japan. Hamilton has also been involved in a number of incidents, including two with Felipe Massa at the last two races and a race-ending shunt at Spa-Francorchamps.

Ahead of last weekend's race at Suzuka, Hamilton said: "Obviously I'd like to be winning and doing a better job. Am I in the best place in my life? No, there's been a lot of negative stories."

Whitmarsh said Hamilton had been unlucky in Japan and would bounce back, either next week in Korea or at one of the other three remaining races this year.

"The puncture and that incident [with Massa] cost him a place or two," Whitmarsh was quoted by the Daily Telegraph. "He had to slug it out. At the moment he has to keep calm, be disciplined. His form will return. There is no reason why this time next week we can't be celebrating an epic win from Lewis - I hope we are."

Whitmarsh hopes McLaren can help Hamilton to recover to his best and insists that the team is still fully behind him.

"You either have to be incredibly strong, resilient and bloody-minded and not need anyone," he added. "Or if you wear your heart on your sleeve you need help and support. Now I believe he has that in this team, but he has to find some things from himself as well. Everyone in this situation needs someone, and I've just sat with him now, and there is no-one in this team that doesn't believe in Lewis Hamilton.

"There is great affection and great support for him within this team. It can change, and it can change in one week. We could be jumping up and down and celebrating his win, or it could happen in three or five weeks' time. He just has to keep his head. He is still a naturally very gifted incredible racing driver and it will come good, I'm quite sure of that."