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'Gloves-off' in the title race - Hamilton

ESPN Staff
September 28, 2012 « FIA confirms 2013 calendar | 'Mercedes offer him much greater freedom on the commercial side' »
Lewis Hamilton says he will have to "come out fighting" at Suzuka following his retirement in Singapore © Sutton Images

Lewis Hamilton says that "it's simply gloves-off" in terms of the championship battle this season with six races remaining.

After retiring from the Singapore Grand Prix, Hamilton has now fallen 52 points behind championship leader Fernando Alonso and admits that he needs to win every remaining race to stand a chance of taking the title. Ahead of the Japanese Grand Prix next weekend, Hamilton says he will "come out fighting" at Suzuka, on a track which punishes mistakes heavily.

"When I first raced here in 2009, I couldn't believe a place like this could still exist in Formula 1 - it still feels like a proper old-school circuit," Hamilton said. "It doesn't have the polish or finesse of an ultra-modern track - but is all the better for it. It's fantastically quick, too, and very difficult to master. It's an unforgiving place, and it also has that special atmosphere that you only get in Japan, for some reason.

"I think that's due to the fans - they're what make any visit to a racetrack in Japan feel so special. They're very passionate about Formula 1, but also extremely polite and friendly - they make you feel very special every day when you're going in and out of the circuit.

"In terms of the championship, there's nothing to really be gained by analysing the points tables, from now on, it's simply gloves-off. As in Singapore, I'll come out fighting, I'll just be hoping for a better result next weekend."