Lewis Hamilton declared his 2013 Formula 1 world championship hopes over after a “disaster” of an Italian Grand Prix.
Hamilton had only qualified 12th after picking up floor damage on his Mercedes, being blocked by Adrian Sutil and confessing to underperforming himself. His race was then disrupted early by a slow puncture that forced him onto a two-stop strategy, with radio problems also a complication.
Hamilton’s eventual ninth place leaves him 81 points behind race winner and championship leader Sebastian Vettel.
“I’m ninth and we should be much further ahead, so I’m very disappointed with myself,” said Hamilton. “I blew it in qualifying and it was just impossible to catch up.
“I gave my all. It’s so hard when you’re empty of energy and you’ve given your all for two points. That’s it for the championship.
“The team did a great job and I didn’t deliver this weekend. I’ve got to go away, reset and try to recover in the next race. Overall a disaster of a weekend.”
Hamilton said the radio failure had been a major handicap.
“It’s almost like driving blind,” he said. “You just don’t know where people are, when to pit, when you’ve got to push, when you’ve got to save tires… you’ve just got to manage it yourself and hope for the best.”