Oct.2 (GMM) McLaren has admitted it will take a 'strategic' approach to the final races of 2008 for fear of again squandering the chance of winning the championship.
Team boss Ron Dennis said in Singapore last weekend, where championship leader Lewis Hamilton finished third, that neither team nor driver will take undue risks in order to protect their advantage in the drivers' classification.Last year, Hamilton had a 17-point advantage with two races to go, but key errors allowed Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen to bridge the gap."I think an inherent weakness in the team and Lewis last year was the overwhelming desire to win the races at almost any risk," chief executive Martin Whitmarsh is quoted as saying by The Guardian."That is more forgivable in Lewis -- you would like to have that in a young racing driver. We as a team should have been more disciplined than we were," he added.Indeed, in the closing laps of the Singapore grand prix, Hamilton was instructed by the pitwall to settle for third place rather than try to pass Nico Rosberg.In 2007, the British driver slid into the pitlane gravel in Shanghai, before further mistakes in Brazil cost him the title."We wanted to win and pushed too hard when we didn't need to," Whitmarsh said, recalling the last races a year ago."Championships aren't won like that," he added.Hamilton, meanwhile, is this week the subject of criticism in the German press, with the broadcaster RTL pronouncing him a "megalomaniac" for comparing himself with the legendary late triple world champion Ayrton Senna."I know that I am as good as Ayrton Senna was," the 23-year-old is quoted as saying.