Stage-managed Lewis struggles to cope, claims Le Mans king
Lewis Hamilton has been told by Britain's most accomplished all-round driver that he must come through the ordeal of being an also-ran to emerge a more complete champion.
Double Le Mans winner Allan McNish is not alone in believing Hamilton had too much, too soon, but urges him to draw inspiration from the commitment of Nigel Mansell and Jenson Button rather than wallow in self-pity.
Two fantasy seasons catapulted Hamilton to the status of Formula One's youngest world champion, but this year's somersaulting fortunes have left him and McLaren among the stragglers, while Button heads towards glorious vindication with Brawn GP.
McNish, who had an ill-starred flirtation with Formula One, says this confrontation with racing life outside the privileged classes provides Hamilton with his potentially defining challenge. "Lewis must appreciate how lucky he was to get straight into a winning F1 car," McNish said. "After everything that came his way in his first two years, he's had a massive wake-up call and realises it can all disappear. The question for Lewis is: can he cope? The answer right now is that he's struggling to cope. His career has been largely stage-managed and suddenly he's lost a lot of support structures, notably his boss, Ron Dennis.
"Other drivers have been where Lewis finds himself. It depends how you react. Lewis is still a very good driver and self-assured to an extent, but this is the challenge for him."
McNish and Audi have a challenge of their own to overcome in the Le Mans 24-hour race next weekend, when an iconic British car is back in the running for outright success. The name is Martin, Aston Martin. One of Aston's British drivers, Darren Turner, wants that ultimate accolade after contributing to the marque's GT1 class victories for the past two years.
Turner said: "I'd love to ruffle Allan's feathers. He's done brilliantly and he's an inspiration for all British drivers. Maybe there's room for another Brit on that podium."
Monaco is a street circuit where driver ability is more important than anywhere else and if we take ...
by Gareth Purnell
24 May 2013 02:00 AM
Three weeks ago as I drove off the Eurostar, I remember thinking what a very long time it was until ...
by Martin Ayres
23 May 2013 05:29 PM
McDowell did brilliantly to land the World Match Play title in Bulgaria last week, but it’s a format...
by Gareth Purnell
23 May 2013 09:13 AM
David Moyes delighted after Rio Ferdinand agrees to stay at Manchester United with new one-year contract
Sergio Garcia / Tiger Woods 'fried chicken' racism row takes fresh twist after 'coloured athletes' comment
After racist remark, Sergio Garcia fights for reputation as Tiger Woods slams 'hurtful' fried chicken joke
New Manchester City manager must deliver five trophies in five years
Manchester United slash interest bill by £10m a year
- 1 Pope Francis: Being an atheist is alright as long as you do good
- 2 'He was always smiling': Lee Rigby named as Woolwich victim
- 3 'Sickening, deluded and unforgivable': Horrific attack brings terror to London’s streets
- 4 'Something passed underneath us, quite close': Airbus A320 has close encounter with UFO
- 5 Lord of the Sings: Sir Christopher Lee, 91, to release heavy metal album
BMF is the UK’s biggest and best loved outdoor fitness classes
Find out what The Independent's resident travel expert has to say about one of the most beautiful small cities in the world
Nook is donating eReaders to volunteers at high-need schools and participating in exclusive events throughout the campaign.
Get the latest on The Evening Standard's campaign to get London's children reading.
Win anything from gadgets to five-star holidays on our competitions and offers page.