Tuesday, June 12, 2007

McLaren drivers 'free to race' - Haug

Jun.4 (GMM)

Norbert Haug has dismissed suggestions that the Monacogrand prix showed Lewis Hamilton that he should forget about winning arace in 2007. The British press criticised McLaren heavily last week,after the Mercedes-powered team ordered the sensational 22-year-oldrookie to follow his world champion teammate Fernando Alonso to thechequered flag. But Haug, who is Mercedes' competition director, toldthe newspaper 'Express' that the protection of Alonso's winningchances will not become a trend. "If you drive for us, you are free torace. "We would be the happiest out of everyone if Lewis wins," theGerman added, ahead of this weekend's Canadian grand prix in Montreal.Team boss Ron Dennis, too, insists that Monaco was simply a "one off"that required a more restrictive strategy. "We will never favour onedriver, no matter who it is, we never have, we never will," he said."If you are a member of this grand prix team, there is equalopportunity for drivers to race, the vast majority of the time. ButMonaco is not one of them."

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