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I'm still learning admits Hamilton

NEWS STORY
09/07/2007

We expect a lot from our heroes, and nobody know that better than McLaren's rookie sensation Lewis Hamilton.

Having taken pole position with a stupendous last moment burst on Saturday, many were expecting him to go one step better on Sunday and give Britain its first home-grown winner since 2000, when David Coulthard took victory at Silverstone.

Instead, race fans and the partisan media were left disappointed that the youngster could 'only' finish third, even though this meant the ninth successive podium finish in his debut season, and that he still heads the World Championship by twelve points.

However, it is clear that in the wake of this failed opportunity, Hamilton is his own hardest task-master, admitting that his performance was not entirely up to scratch.

"As a driver, I'm still learning," he told reporters, following yesterday's race. "Wwe're going to a few tracks that I know, so it should really make the weekend a little bit easier, but it doesn't. I've been here before, but I've struggled in terms of pace.

I made a mistake in the pitstop," he admitted. "I thought the lollipop was lifted and I went. I don't know how many seconds I lost."

However, there was also the question of set-up, and the youngster took responsibility for this also.

"I made a wrong decision with the set-up," he revealed. "I chose a different rear end to Fernando and I think it really caused me problems in the race.

"Even in qualifying we didn't really have the pace we should have had," he added, "and it was too late by then to change. It's a good lesson, we have to look forward and hope to be better in the next race."

As the fans headed home, their hero having come hime a distant third, almost forty seconds behind race winner Raikkonen, Hamilton looked for the positivers from a relatively disappointing day.

"We could have had a better result," he said, "but you have to look on the bright side. It's nine podiums in a row. I don't know if that's ever been done, but I'm very happy with that."

And as for the 85,000 fans that flocked to Silverstone on Sunday.

"The fans have been tremendous," he said. "Without their support it would have been a much harder race. I knew they were with me all the way."

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