Dark days for Hamilton and McLaren despite Monza victory
10 September, 2012
Sep.10 (GMM) Lewis Hamilton gave away more clues about his future after winning Sunday’s Italian grand prix, and although at Monza the Briton matched Mika Hakkinen’s career tally of 20 wins, he looked miserable as he celebrated the Monza victory with his team.
And photos of the British team’s traditional victory photograph depicted Hamilton, 27, as the only McLaren member without his fist aloft in triumph.
“There appeared to be tension in the air,” said another observer, writing for the French news agency AFP.
“As (team boss Martin) Whitmarsh hugged Hamilton, the embrace looked strained and then the 2008 champion struggled to raise a smile, or a clenched fist, when asked to by photographers.”
Was Hamilton’s mood indicative of a terminal falling-out with McLaren, on the eve of a rumoured 2012 switch to rivals Mercedes?
A report in the Daily Mail said that Ron Dennis, McLaren’s impresario who was at Monza for the grand prix, failed to applaud when Hamilton collected the winner’s trophy.
Whitmarsh is quoted as saying: “We want Lewis to stay if he wants to stay.”
Writing in the Times, Kevin Eason suspects the cat may be out of the bag following a recent meeting between Hamilton and Bernie Ecclestone.
Not long after that get-together, Eddie Jordan was telling the world Michael Schumacher is going to be replaced by Hamilton next year.
Actually, Hamilton still has the entire paddock guessing.
Asked if it’s a shame that his teammate Jenson Button could not complete a McLaren one-two on Sunday, he teased: “Maybe next year.”
Not, however, if some of Hamilton’s McLaren colleagues have anything to do with it. One unnamed McLaren staffer told Der Spiegel at Monza: “We are extremely upset with him. He should go.”
Subbed by AJN.
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