Lewis Hamilton insists he is ignoring pundits’ suggestions that he is now Sebastian Vettel’s main rival for the 2013 Formula 1 title, but admitted to feeling more motivated than ever.
Hamilton and Mercedes have momentum on their side as the F1 world championship resumes after its summer break at this weekend’s Belgian Grand Prix. But Hamilton, who is still 48 points behind Vettel in fourth in the drivers’ championship, reckons too much is being made of his Hungarian GP win.
Asked if he felt he now had the potential to challenge Vettel for the crown, Hamilton replied: “It’s the same every year: you have one race win and people then get excited; you have a bad race and negative things are said.
“I’m not focused on what is being said. I’m just here to do my job and continue driving how I have been.”
He acknowledged, though, that he had enjoyed one of his most productive summers since coming to F1.
“I’ve been training hard in the break which is different to the last six years, when I’ve taken it as a real holiday and only trained two or three times a week, not six days,” said Hamilton. “I’ve been trying to get myself centred and I come here today feeling more motivated than ever.
“It’s a great feeling to know that we’ve got a car that we can compete with. There’s a long way to go but generally my second half of seasons have been more positives, so hopefully that is the case this year.”