Dennis relieves Hamilton of constructors’ duty


McLaren boss lessens protégé’s burden ahead of crunch title decider in Brazil.

Lewis Hamilton will not be expected to take risks to secure the constructors’ championship for McLaren in Brazil, team principal Ron Dennis has affirmed.

Hamilton arrives in Brazil for the season finale with a seven point lead over title rival Felipe Massa and only needs to finish fifth or higher to be crowned champion.

McLaren’s position in the Constructors’ Championship is less advantageous. The Woking squad are eleven points behind Ferrari and need to secure a 1-2 finish at the very least to be in with a chance of beating their Italian rivals.

Ron Dennis has made it clear that McLaren’s approach to next weekend will be geared almost entirely around helping Hamilton clinch the Drivers’ Championship, which would be the team’s first in nine years.

The extra revenue that would come with glory in the constructors’ battle is of little interest to the McLaren chief.

The primary goal in grand prix racing is the Drivers’ Championship, the secondary is the Constructors’, and we run the team according to those objectives,” Dennis told The Times .

“We don’t balance the two. Of course we try to win the Constructors’ trophy, because that determines your material income, but we aren’t about money, we’re about winning. If you are successful you inevitably make money, but the first objective is to win.”

Should Hamilton triumph in Brazil then he would become the youngest ever driver to clinch the world championship.

The 23-year-old has come under heavy fire for his aggressive driving style in recent races, but Dennis believes Hamilton will arrive at the final race of the season stronger as a result.

“I think the opposition is providing the sound bites,” said the McLaren chief. “Very often the human weaknesses people have manifest themselves in some of those remarks.”

“It can be envy, it can be jealousy, it can be more aggressive emotions, but in the end they are just that, emotions, and we are concerned about avoiding those emotions coming into any team member and having an influence.”

“You just have to be even more dedicated and even more thoughtful about your reactions and rise above them. The alternative is to react. Through that reaction they achieve their goal, which is destabilisation.”