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Hamilton fans the flames

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28/09/2007

Despite Fernando Alonso's claim that he will be driving for McLaren next season, teammate Lewis Hamilton appears keen to continue fanning the flames suggesting that there is division within the team and that he is the favoured one.

"With everything that has gone on in the past couple of weeks, I think they have started to realise who the real people are in the team, and who they really should back," he told reporters. "I feel my bond with the team is even stronger now."

While Hamilton attended the World Motor Sport Council hearing in Paris earlier this month, Alonso gave it a miss, preferring to head to Spa and begin his preparations for the Belgian GP. Hamilton says that in addition to failing to understand why the Spaniard didn't attend the hearing, even as a gesture of support for his team, he is also at a loss to understand his teammate's attitude at such a critical time for his employer.

"We arrived at Spa and he is sitting there laughing and joking," the Englishman said. "I don't understand it.

"You try to understand people," he continued, "but then the whole idea of what sort of person they are is completely miles out of the ball park. He is not the person I imagined him to be but that's the way it is.

"I came on to the scene with a bright, open mind. I'm thinking, 'shoot, I'm here. I'm in F1.' Then all the politics, stress, so much stress. It was not what I expected, not what I was coming here to do. I was coming here to enjoy it and to race and compete."

In Paris, team boss Ron Dennis revealed that he and Alonso were not on speaking terms and hadn't been since the morning of the Hungarian GP, the day that the Spaniard is alleged to have demanded outright number one status within the team, or else.

Hamilton says he is shocked by Alonso's demand: "Not once have I approached the team and asked to be favoured. It is just not something I have done at any team, asking for better equipment. It is better when you both have equal opportunity.

"I want to win the right way," he added. "The best feeling ever is when you know you have beaten someone as talented as he is with the same equipment and opportunity."

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