With Mercedes' leading man finally taking top spot in the Drivers' Championship after Sunday's dominant showing at the Italian Grand Prix, Lewis Hamilton now firmly believes that come the end of the season, he will be ahead of long-time rival Sebastian Vettel in the standings.
Hamilton now moves three points ahead of Ferrari adversary Vettel in the rankings, and with seven more events remaining, it looks as if it could go down to the wire between the two top drivers of Formula 1.
When asked whether he will look to gain support on the track from Finnish teammate Valtteri Bottas, Hamilton jumped on the defensive, insisting he prefers to achieve his goals alone.
"That’s not how I like to operate." stated Hamilton.
His blunt retort in response to this question may shock a few, considering Hamilton is in his fifth season with Formula 1 giants Mercedes, whilst Bottas is his teammate in his first season with Mercedes.
However, the 32-year-old later begins to alter his stance on the matter, and looks to voice his admiration for Bottas' accomplishments.
"It’s only his first season with the team and he’s done an exceptional job already, so he’s only going to get stronger and stronger through the year."
There is a possibility that Hamilton may have gone back on his earlier sharp comments regarding potential assistance from his teammate, for fear that if taken out of context, they have the power to cause animosity within the Mercedes camp.
A problem that Ferrari could not avoid, as seen with the older head Kimi Raikkonen, who on a number of occasions this season has been made to unfairly look like the second rate driver in Ferrari.
After obviously sensing danger with his initial comments about Bottas, Hamilton looks to wrap things up and put out any potential fires by asking that people address those types of questions to Niki Lauda and Toto Wolff.
“I personally have not spoken to the team requesting it. That’s not really my job, my job is to arrive and do the best job I can.
"You would hope that at some stage the team makes the decision on their own and I think we’ve got good people leading the team - people like Niki [Lauda] and Toto [Wolff] - who hopefully will know at the right point what’s best for the team."
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