HindustanTimes Mon,29 Dec 2014
'Huge shoes' for Hamilton to fill
October 24, 2012
First Published: 22:34 IST(24/10/2012)
Last Updated: 22:37 IST(24/10/2012)
Lewis Hamilton will cease to be a McLaren driver at the end of 2012 as he moves to Mercedes to replace Michael Schumacher. UNI photo

It really isn't an event in India unless it's held a little 'fashionably' late. However, a press conference featuring McLaren's Lewis Hamilton pushed the boundaries a bit. Journalists sat to have their ears blasted by a commercial that was played in a loop for half an hour with the main attraction no where in sight.

The press conference finally started with the PR representative and senior executive regaling the crowd of sports journalists with topics relating to anything but F1.

Fifty-six minutes after the scheduled time of the event, Hamilton appeared and finally things got down to business.

The obvious elephant in the room was that Hamilton would be headed off to the factory team of McLaren's current engine supplier Mercedes to replace Michael Schumacher.

"I have huge shoes to fill in at Mercedes and it will be difficult," Hamilton told reporters.

 "I grew up watching Michael on TV and win all the titles. I was upset that I never got a chance to race Schumacher as he retired at the end of 2006. It was surreal for me when he came back to racing in 2010."

The topic of Narain Karthikeyan's plight at backmarkers HRT F1 was also touched upon. "It is unfortunate that Narain is driving a slow car. Probably, it would do wonders if he were in Force India which is a pretty good team. It would be a good stepping stone for him," said Hamilton.

"I am a Brit driving for a British team in a British car and it has done wonders for us so I hope it would be the same for him and India."

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