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Page last updated at 14:17 GMT, Saturday, 24 July 2010 15:17 UK

McLaren admit concern after qualifying struggle

Highlights - German GP qualifying

Highlights - German GP qualifying

McLaren admitted they are concerned about a sizeable gap in performance between themselves and both Ferrari and Red Bull at the German Grand Prix.

The British team could not match the pace of their rivals in qualifying at Hockenheim on Saturday.

Jenson Button said it was "worrying", while Lewis Hamilton said it was clear McLaren were now the third team.

Hamilton said: "I'll do the best job from where I am, hopefully get a good start and just chase the guys down."

Button, who qualified fifth, one place ahead of Hamilton, said: "For me it was a good lap - I didn't think I could have done anything else when I got out of the car, so it's a little bit disappointing.


"We've definitely made a step forward, but it wasn't enough in 'quali' spec. Hopefully we'll see some more performance tomorrow.

"The car was very pointy on Friday, but we know why and we changed the car to help it and this morning it was good in the dry. We just don't have the pace of the Red Bulls, which is worrying."

Hamilton said: "I was already down a 10th through Turn One, and from then on it's very hard to catch it back. It's clear now we're the third team, which I've been saying for a while. Ferrari did a great job and I think we just need to keep pushing.

"There's some time there, but I don't think I would ever be anywhere near the Ferrari or Red Bulls."

McLaren's Lewis Hamilton

McLaren third-fastest team - Hamilton

Team principal Martin Whitmarsh acknowledged McLaren face a tough challenge during the race. He said: "Inevitably when you're on the third row it's a little disappointing. Ferrari have made some good progress, they look strong. Frankly, Ferrari and Red Bull look quicker than us in qualifying mode.

"We'll have to see whether we can match them in the race. We have high speed at the end of the straight, and maybe we can attack."

McLaren's Jenson Button

Gap to front-runners worries Button

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see also
Vettel pips Alonso to German pole
24 Jul 10 |  Formula 1
German Grand Prix practice results
24 Feb 10 |  Results
German GP qualifying photos
24 Jul 10 |  Formula 1
German GP qualifying as it happened
24 Jul 10 |  Formula 1
Button worried about rivals' pace
23 Jul 10 |  Formula 1

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