Hamilton shrugs off Maldonado clash
Lewis Hamilton has dismissed his latest unsavoury accident with Pastor Maldonado as "a blip in what can be a great year".
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For the third time in the past 13 months, Hamilton and Maldonado were involved in an incident, with the McLaren star shunted into a wall by the Venezuelan in his Williams on the penultimate lap of Sunday's European Grand Prix in Valencia.
Hamilton had been attempting to hold on to third place at the time, but on badly-worn rear tyres found himself a sitting duck.
It could be argued Hamilton should not have tried so desperately to have fended off Maldonado, and instead banked the 12 points for fourth place which he almost certainly would have earned.
Hamilton admitted at the time such an act is not in his nature, but it proved costly as he now trails Ferrari's Fernando Alonso by 23 points in the drivers' standings.
As far as the 27-year-old is concerned, what transpired has now been forgotten as he looks ahead to his home race next weekend, the British Grand Prix at Silverstone.
"I'm not going to reflect on it, I'm just going to move forward," said Hamilton.
"It's in the past, it doesn't really matter now. Sometimes you have to accept when things don't go your way in racing.
"Obviously it was frustrating to lose out so close to the finish. It wasn't good.
"I definitely didn't get out of the car smiling, but these things happen, this is what motor racing is about, it's what competition is about. You go through these kinds of experiences
"As far as I'm concerned I'm still in the battle for the title, and there's still a long, long way to go.
"I've been massively consistent all the way up to this point, and in terms of my preparation and my approach I will continue to do the same.
"It's not as if I drove into the wall on my own. I didn't make a mistake on my own.
"So I will just continue to do what I'm doing, try and stay out of trouble more.
"It doesn't really alter the way I go racing because I race to win, and that's what I'll be doing, especially at my home grand prix.
"And we can still compete for the championship. I feel what happened is just a blip in what can be a great year."
The crash with Maldonado overshadowed yet another pitstop error this season from McLaren as a new front-jack system proved faulty when Hamilton took on fresh tyres at the safety car period.
It cost him an additional 10 seconds in time, as well as position on track at that stage, and but for that he would undoubtedly have avoided his penultimate-lap exit.
Asked whether the ongoing pitlane problems were a concern, he said: "They're always a concern because it's been a problem every race so far.
"But after each race you put it behind you, you go to the next race with the mindset that there's not going to be any problems.
"Last weekend our first pitstop was the fastest of all time (2.3secs), so I'm told.
"If we can try and maintain that, or even if we just slow up a little but we're still quicker than other people and we have consistency, then we're in good shape."
With the McLaren seemingly well suited to the high-speed nature of Silverstone, there is belief within the team Hamilton and team-mate Jenson Button can thrill a sell-out crowd.
With Hamilton determined to triumph again after doing so in 2008, he said: "To me, winning at Silverstone is right up there with winning at Monaco.
"Standing on the top step of the podium in 2008 was among the sweetest moments of my career.
"We're going to give it everything we've got to put on a great show.
"This is an incredible summer of sport for Britain and I want to play my small part in bringing some joy to the fans.
"I will be doing everything possible to get a win for my country on home soil."