Hamilton: 'That's it for us'
TITLE HOPE DWINDLE: McLaren's Lewis Hamilton has come to terms with the fact that his 2012 title hopes have disappeared with the Korean GP. Image: AP
Author: ALAN BALDWIN
YEONGAM, South Korea - Lewis Hamilton brought down the shutters on his Formula 1 title hopes at the 2012 Korean Grand Prix even as McLaren praised him for his grit and determination.
Hamilton said: "I think in terms of winning (the championship), that is it for us. I don't see us in the fight. It's out of the question for us probably now, it's a shame as we were right there for a moment but this is motor racing."
Hamilton remains fourth overall in the championship but 62 points behind Red Bull's race winner Sebastian Vettel with four races, and 100 points, remaining.
Hamilton started third on the grid but lost a place at the start to Ferrari's Fernando Alonso and then suffered a rear roll bar failure that made his car increasingly hard to handle.
To make matters worse, his car then picked up a length of dislodged astroturf that became wedged in a sidepod for the final laps.
Team principal Martin Whitmarsh said: "He showed really heroic fighting spirit. Despite what a terrible day it is, I have to come away incredibly proud of him and what he did in the circumstances.
"I think he showed fantastic spirit and grit to get to the end and get the most hard-fought world championship point I can remember in the history of this team. For one point you don't get much more heroic a drive," he said.
'DAY TO FORGET'
Hamilton is leaving McLaren, the team he has been part of since he was 13 years old, for Mercedes at the end of 2012 but his performance showed that he intends to fight for whatever he can get right to the end.
Hamilton commented: "It's a day to forget, this has been a year to forget as well so I am looking forward to a fresh start next year.
"It was really difficult, I struggled like crazy. It's not always great to have races like this but sometimes it is good to see what is in your heart and if you keep fighting it shows there will be a brighter day."