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Martin Whitmarsh: Challenge have been far more difficult had Vettel and Webber not collided

The leading team McLaren principal Martin Whitmarsh was naturally pleased with his team’s sporting performs as the Working group celebrated its second Istanbul victory and third race win of the season on Sunday. But, the British-man acknowledges that the challenge would have been far more hard had Red Bull drivers Vettel and Webber not collided.

Among Lewis having started second previous to piling the stress on the shoulders of pole man Mark Webber in the early stages, Lewis dropped to third – following Vettel – after suffer a left-rear wheel problem during his sole pit-stop. But, despite the Red Bulls’ Lap 41 coming together, Hamilton then fended off a challenge from team-mate Jenson Button which saw the latter for a moment lead the race, with the two silvers cars then coming into contact as well.

“It was heart-stopping; we’re a racing team, we had the same dilemma in China and inevitably there are always desires to slow the cars down but I wasn’t comfortable for a few moments,” Whitmarsh admitted to the BBC as this week marks the 40th anniversary of team founder Bruce McLaren.

“I think he would be proud with everyone in Woking, how hard they’ve been pressing to be on pace with Red Bull – I think in the race we were quicker than Red Bull.”

“I think what you’ve got to say is, if you’ve got a 1-2 in prospect, you can’t jeopardise it by colliding on the track – it’s not acceptable for drivers to take themselves out. I confess I was a little bit surprised by the extent they were cuddling Sebastian during the race, I don’t think I would have been cuddling Sebastian.

“I don’t know if they’re happy with what happened in their race but I’m happy with what happened in ours.”

McLaren 1-2, Turkish Grand Prix Race Result

Images © Sutton Images

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