Hakkinen: Monaco misery will make Hamilton stronger

2015-05-26 09:38
Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton may be scratching his head, wondering what went wrong at Monaco at the weekend, but his tactical mishap which cost him victory will make him a better driver and build his character, according to former Formula One world

LEWIS Hamilton can turn Monaco misery into a Canadian celebration because every setback makes you stronger, according to retired double world champion Mika Hakkinen.

“‘I’m going to win the next one’. That will be his motivation. You cannot just start getting depressed about it,” said the Finn, who overcame his own share of race setbacks.

“You have to learn and analyse everything that has happened, and get stronger and better.”

Hakkinen, champion with McLaren in 1998 and 1999, knows all about that from bitter experience.

At the 1999 Italian Grand Prix, he sobbed in bushes by the side of the track after making a basic error and crashing out while leading.

In Spain in 2001, the Finn suffered one of the cruellest blows when his McLaren’s engine blew on the last lap while he was coasting to victory.

“All these things that happen in motor racing or in life, they make you stronger because you learn from those things. It’s just very hard in the position you are sitting, in the racing car, when everyone is staring at you,” said Hakkinen.

“Millions of fans looking at it and asking why? It’s hard to be a driver sitting there and have to answer these questions.

“But you have to go on, you have to go flat out. You have to build up your confidence inside more and challenge the next grand prix. There’s a long way to go in the season. And Monaco is an example that anything can happen.”

Sunday’s race had a Hamilton victory written all over it. He was fastest in practice, qualified on pole and led from the start by a comfortable margin until the safety car came out near the end.

While others stayed out, the Briton came in for fresh tyres in what turned out to be a needless stop. He finished third.

Mercedes motorsport head Toto Wolff apologised for the error, but said Hamilton, whose championship lead over team-mate and race winner Nico Rosberg was halved to 10 points, would fight back at the next race, the seventh of the season, in Montreal.

“He has such mental strength and is on a roll. It must be very sore to lose that one, because it was his to win. I have no doubt he will recover as quickly as he always did,” said the Austrian.

— Reuters


What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Live scoring

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


With the Absa Premiership in full swing, who will be crowned champions when all is said and done? Will Mamelodi Sundowns defend their title? Or can Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates or Bidvest Wits mount a serious challenge? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Hypothetically, given the same cars to drive, who is the most talented current Formula One driver in your opinion?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.