McLaren loses another 35 points to Red Bull
8 July 2012 – In terms of championship position, the British Grand Prix was one of the worst of 2012 for McLaren. With Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button finishing only eighth and tenth, their total of five points is in stark contrast to the 40 collected by Red Bull pairing Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel, who crossed the line in first and third positions.
“It wasn’t a great race for me – I just wish we could have done more for the fans today,” said Hamilton, who had dominated the British event four years ago. “We tried as hard as we could, but we simply didn’t have the pace this afternoon. My tyres were still good at the end of my first stint and I was able to hang on to Fernando (Alonso), so it’s hard to understand how we could be leading the race at one point and then fall back to eighth place, especially as our car doesn’t feel bad overall.
“I raced my heart out and was flat-out right to the end. We’re still in the hunt for the World Championship and, if we can find a bit of lap time, we can stay in the hunt, too. I gave the fans a little donut on the slow-down lap – simply because I wanted to say thank you to everyone who came out to watch us here today. I’d love to have done better in my home Grand Prix but, regardless, the fans were fantastic throughout the weekend.”
Jenson Button was knocked out in Q1 qualifying and started 16th after picking up two places because of penalties ahead. The 2009 title winner rose to tenth, snatching the final point when the Force India of Nico Hülkenberg ran wide at Copse.
“It was good to get a point in my Grand Prix, but of course that’s not what we ought to be doing,” he admitted. “We’re a front-running team and we’ve got a bit of work to do to start running at the front again. I don’t think we made any mistakes with our strategy today - we’re just not quite quick enough at the moment, that’s all.”
McLaren is no longer Red Bull’s closest challenger for the teams’ title, having now dropped down to fourth place behind Ferrari and Lotus.