Hamilton's fears

Lewis Hamilton revealed his fear that the ongoing political row surrounding McLaren could ruin his debut Formula One season and even leave him out of a job before the Belgian Grand Prix at Spa-Francorchamps on September 16.

After finishing second behind his team-mate Fernando Alonso in the Italian GP, Hamilton said he was worried that his team principal and mentor Ron Dennis might be hounded out of the sport. Rumours were circulating at Monza that following inquiries into the leak of confidential technical information from Ferrari the team would get a clean bill of health only if the 60-year-old resigned his post.

“If you sit down and think about it, I could have what I’ve worked for and what all the team have worked for, taken away,” said Hamilton. “And when you really think about that, you think ‘Wow, I could be out of a job next weekend and then what happens?’ It was going so well, and then you just get this big knife that cuts off your blood line.

“It is a bit disappointing when you read things about it — I won’t go into it because I’ll get emotional — but I really do have such a great belief in my team. I have 100% confidence in them, so that’s why it is easy for me just to relax.”

Hamilton also has total confidence in Dennis.

In his excellent debut season, however, the British driver says the political machinations behind the scenes have sickened him. “I never actually thought I’d be sitting here saying I hate something about Formula One,” Hamilton said. “But the politics and people wanting to be bigger than others is just incredible. I would say to you all that Ron has always been very, very loyal to me, has always given me the opportunity and he has always been such a great man to me.”

“Formula One would not be the same without McLaren, so let’s just keep our fingers crossed that nothing else is going to happen,” added Hamilton. “It is for him (Dennis) and all the other people that are outside trying to figure out exactly what we need to do to basically keep ourselves here.”

Alan Henry