Lewis fumes after Pastor clash

2012-06-25 08:29

VALENCIA, Spain - Lewis Hamilton was left frustrated and fuming after another run-in with Pastor Maldonado knocked him out of the points on the penultimate lap of the 2012 European GP here on Sunday.

McLaren's 2008 World champion, who had started the day as championship leader, was fighting to hang on to third when he and the Venezuelan Williams driver collided.

The Briton, his car pitched through the air and into the wall, hammered the steering wheel with his fists in frustration and then tossed it out of the cockpit.


The stewards later ruled that Maldonado had caused the collision for failing to rejoin the track in a safe manner and added a 20-second penalty to his race time. That knocked the Venezuelan out of the points to 12th and promoted Brazilian team mate Bruno Senna to 10th instead, but was cold comfort for Hamilton.

He had calmed down by the time he spoke to TV reporters after the race but his carefully measured words spoke more of a driver determined to keep a lid on his true emotions on a day that saw him slip to third in the championship.

A terse Hamilton told the BBC: "A tough day in the office for us, but that's life, you have to deal with it. As always I put my heart and soul into a race like that. You have ups and downs so I'm looking forward to the Silverstone GP."

The McLaren driver has previous form with Maldonado, colliding with him at 2011's Monaco Grand Prix and ending the Williams driver's race.


Maldonado, surprise winner at the Spanish GP in May, 2012, was forthright with his opinions at the time accusing Hamilton of not "driving like a champion", and was sharp on Sunday as well.

Maldonado said: "He tried to put me out of the track and he didn't leave any room for me to stay and to do the corner side by side. I jumped over the kerb and I couldn't avoid the accident.

"I don't know why he drove like that, he was struggling too much with the tyres, he was completely lost and at that moment I was making very good pace.

"He tried a very aggressive movement on me."