Lewis Hamilton says a win at the Italian GP is “not impossible”

© Steve Etherington for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd.

Lewis Hamilton explains what led to his poor start at the Italian Grand Prix Sprint Qualifying, but says he can still challenge Max Verstappen in the race.

Lewis Hamilton will start the Italian Grand Prix from P4, after a poor start in the qualifying sprint race dropped him from his original P2.

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff described the start as “quite unusual” for Hamilton, but he says a win in the race is still possible.

“First of all, the starts can happen,” the Austrian said.

“Between hero and zero on a start is such a fine margin,” said Wolff, offering more thoughts on the situation.

“Having too much wheelspin happens, to be honest, and that bit us hard, but we still have everything to play [for],” concluded Wolff.

After sprint qualifying Lewis explained what led to his poor start and why he had trouble passing Lando Norris.

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“The McLarens are the quickest on the straights, and I just couldn’t get close enough to then capitalise on the straight line,” Hamilton said.

“They were just as fast [as me] on the straights, if not faster. So the start was just, broke away, [got] traction, subtle, like 2mm too deep with the clutch paddle and [had] wheelspin. That’s it.”

However, Lewis believes there’s still a chance for him to challenge Max Verstappen in the race, provided that he quickly passes the two McLarens ahead of him.

“Tomorrow is highly unlikely, but not impossible, that we could get the win. We of course will be working as hard as we can to try. I think it’s damage limitation at the moment.

“It generally should be a relatively easy race for Max, unless I can get past the two McLarens early on and then challenge him,” concluded the seven-time champion.

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