Mario Andretti rooting for 'unlucky' Hamilton


13 August 2014 by TF1T Staff

Mario Andretti is rooting for Lewis Hamilton to succeed in his hunt for the 2014 title, rather than current championship leader Nico Rosberg.

The 1978 champion reckons Hamilton is more deserving considering he sits just 11 points behind Rosberg despite repeated reliability troubles.

"We've seen some epic racing between the two of them," he told the official F1 website. "I have a tendency to root a little bit more for Lewis, mainly because of the bad luck he's had mechanically.

"When anything happens, it happens to his car and yet he has kept his chin up. And look at the performances he's had: starting from the pits in Hungary - it was fabulous to see. How could you not root for him?"

Andretti also praised Hamilton's mental attitude amid the troubles.

"He never gave up; he kept his attitude on a positive level. It could have been a total disaster if he'd had his chin down and been beaten mentally, but he's shown a lot of character this season and if he wins the championship it will be really, really well deserved."

The American also backs a no team-order stance and says the 2008 champion was right to refuse to move over in Hungary when he and Rosberg are locked in a battle for the title.

"Here’s the way I view team orders: if you reach a point in the season where one driver has got the best chance of pulling off a much better result in the championship then I think it's reasonable enough to help that driver," he explained.

"But if you're in a position like Mercedes then I think they can probably let [Hamilton and Rosberg] fight to the end and not jeopardise the team's position. That's the way it should be - the driver that is in the best position in the last three or four races, that's the guy that the team - and his team-mate - should try to help. But until that point it has to be open season, no question about it."