‘I couldn’t see where I was going,’ says Lewis Hamilton after Austria rain masterclass

Mercedes' British driver Lewis Hamilton stears his car during the qualifying for the Formula One Styrian Grand Prix on July 11, 2020 in Spielberg, Austria. (AFP)
Short Url
Updated 11 July 2020

‘I couldn’t see where I was going,’ says Lewis Hamilton after Austria rain masterclass

  • After a disappointing practice day on Friday, the six-time world champion bounced back to his best

SPIELBERG, Austria: Lewis Hamilton said he survived some “heart in the mouth” moments on Saturday as he claimed a spectacular pole position in treacherous rain-swept conditions for Sunday’s Styrian Grand Prix.
After a disappointing practice day on Friday, the six-time world champion bounced back to his best as he outpaced nearest rival Max Verstappen of Red Bull by more than 1.2 seconds.
His dramatic demonstration of supreme skill and speed on a wet track at the Red Bull Ring increased his record total of pole positions to 89.
“Honestly, I am pleased with that,” he said.
“What a tricky day! The weather is obviously incredibly difficult out there for all of us and, a lot of the time, you cannot actually see where you are going.
“I had one big moment, on the lap before last, when I had a big aquaplane.
“I had my heart in my mouth, but I was able to improve on the last lap, nice and clean. I love these days.”
The 35-year-old Briton had struggled with set-up issues on his Mercedes in Friday’s practice sessions, but said the team had resolved them and he was confident about Sunday’s race, whatever the conditions.
“Yesterday was a difficult day,” said Hamilton.
“It started off well in FP1 and then in FP2 there was a big issue for us, but we discovered it overnight — nothing major.
“I think today would have been better for us if it had been dry, but I am grateful for the rain, like always! I love these kind of conditions.
“Tomorrow looks like a much sunnier day, but we are prepared for both conditions and that’s where I want to start.
“So, I am glad it was a trouble-free session with no mistakes. That’s always a positive.”
Hamilton’s performance enabled him to prove also that his form has not been affected by his passionate support for the global Black Lives Matter movement and the anti-racism efforts launched in Formula One.
“I don’t feel like I need to refocus,” he said this week after finishing fifth in last Sunday’s season-opening Austrian Grand Prix on the same circuit, won by his Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas.
“My race was pretty strong. I need to do a better job, but I wouldn’t say I was distracted. I am focused on both — trying to fight and win this championship, but also fighting for equal rights.”
On Thursday, he said he was hoping to be able to take the knee again — as he and 13 other drivers did before last Sunday’s race — and was seeking a way to make this possible.
“If I can find a way of making sure it doesn’t get in the way of us doing our job, then I will,” he said.


Eighth Covid case hits Pakistan cricketers in New Zealand 

Updated 02 December 2020

Eighth Covid case hits Pakistan cricketers in New Zealand 

  • Team would not be allowed to train together until doctors were confident it would not lead to more coronavirus case 
  • 53-member tour party arrived in Christchurch on November 24 for two weeks of quarantine which is mandatory for all overseas arrivals in New Zealand

Wellington: An eighth member of Pakistan’s cricket squad has tested positive for Covid-19 as the team undergoes quarantine in Christchurch, New Zealand health authorities said Wednesday.
The health department said there was one new confirmed case among the squad and a further two members were being investigated, adding to the seven who previously tested positive over the past week.
The department said the team would not be allowed to train together until doctors were confident it would not lead to more coronavirus cases.
Director-general of health Ashley Bloomfield issued the team with a “final warning” last week for flouting social distancing protocols at their hotel.
No further breaches have been reported since.
Two of the original six cases last week were subsequently found to be historical, meaning they were not infectious, while the other four were active. A seventh member of the squad tested positive on Saturday.
The 53-member tour party, led by skipper Babar Azam, arrived in Christchurch on November 24 for two weeks of quarantine which is mandatory for all overseas arrivals in New Zealand.
All tested negative before leaving Lahore for the five-match tour, which is scheduled to begin with a Twenty20 international in Auckland on December 18.
New Zealand has largely eradicated community transmission of coronavirus recording just 1,704 cases and 25 deaths in a population of five million.