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Lewis: 'I'm happy where I am'

2013-08-23 11:04


BACK ON TRACK Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton says he feels "better than ever" and is ready to pick up where he left off after his win at the 2013 Hungarian GP. Image: AFP

SPA-FRANCORCHAMPS, Belgium - This time in 2012 Lewis Hamilton was surrounded by speculation, bombarded by questions about his future and seemingly dogged by controversy.

Ahead of the Belgian Formula 1 GP on Thursday (Aug 23) the 2008 Formula 1 champion cut a very different figure - relaxed, at ease with his Mercedes team, untroubled by the rumours running wild elsewhere.


Hamilton told British reporters: "As far as I can remember this is the best I have felt going into the second half of the season. I'm able to focus more because I only have one thing to focus on and that's winning. In 2012 I was having so many different things that I was thinking about."

Hamilton arrived at Spa eager to pick up where he left off after winning in Hungary - the last race before the August break to enjoy the northern summer holidays.

While speculation swirled around the 2014 intentions of Ferrari's Fernando Alonso and Lotus's Kimi Raikkonen, and who might partner champion Sebastian Vettel at Red Bull in 2014, Hamilton's position is clear and settled and he hoped to benefit from the stability.

The Brit said: "In 2012 I tried my best not to let it affect me but battling off the questions and also not knowing where I was planning to go, it was a constant strain taking away energy. I don't have that now, so it is a great feeling coming here. It is a night-and-day difference to 2012.

"I'm settled in my new team, happy where I am, and looking forward to a really successful three years with them that I hope will continue even longer. I just hope that feeling continues."


Hamilton's win in Hungary was his first for Mercedes since he moved from McLaren, the team he had been with since boyhood in karting, and moved him up to fourth place overall with nine races remaining.

The Briton is still 48 points behind Vettel but emerging as the German's biggest threat as the 2013 season enters its second half. He's nine points behind Alonso and 10 behind Raikkonen but has started the last three races on pole with the Mercedes the quickest car over a single lap.

"I'm happy in my team and confident in my car. I won the last race and am confident we can win some more before the end of the season," Hamilton said, adding that he was feeling better than ever, even though his pet bulldog Roscoe was unwell and unable to join him on his travels.

"I feel really healthy right now, feel the batteries are full," he said. "In the previous six years I'd taken it (the August break) as a bit of a holiday and trained maybe twice a week. This time I was training six times a week and trying to get myself centred and I come here feeling more motivated than ever.

"We know we have a quick car and that it's not suddenly got slower over the break, so we can come here and fight. There's a long way to go but generally my second half to a season has been stronger - I hope that will be the case again this year."

Stay with Wheels24 for the 2013 Belgian GP weekend.

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