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Formula 1 News - June, 2008
Hamilton loses title lead in Canada calamity

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Jun.8 (GMM) The press was immediately as forgiving of former championship leader Lewis Hamilton as was the angry Kimi Raikkonen, after the pair exited the Canadian grand prix in a bizarre pitlane crash.

The major American news network CNN described the incident as "Lewis' Canadian calamity", after the McLaren driver failed to spot a red light before re-entering the circuit and careened into the rear of Raikkonen's stationary Ferrari.

The German news agency DPA said 23-year-old Hamilton's was a "rookie mistake", and reigning world champion Raikkonen clearly agreed, waggling his finger at Hamilton and pointing derisively at the pitlane traffic light after dismounting their damaged cars.

"It was one of those things I guess," Hamilton said in the pitlane, after regaining his composure following the short walk from the crash scene to the McLaren garage.

"I apologise to Kimi if I ruined his race but that sort of thing happens," the Briton added.

Stewards are investigating the crash, but Hamilton's immediate thoughts were no doubt focused on the lost opportunity, after scoring a dominant pole on Saturday and leading the race until the safety car interruption.

"I was breezing it. Next time," he said.

Hamilton and Raikkonen's absence left the door wide open for BMW-Sauber's Robert Kubica and Nick Heidfeld to secure an historic maiden triumph and one-two.

Heidfeld, second, was visibly the less excited of the white-outfitted pair on the podium and in the press conference, and he admitted that at one point on a heavier fuel-load, he did "not make it too difficult" for winner Kubica, 23, to pass him.

Pole Kubica, on the other hand, is now in a position to defend his new four-point championship lead over Hamilton and Felipe Massa in the forthcoming races.

"I hope the team will give me 100 per cent support to defend it until last race," he said.

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