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McLaren shrug off rain fears

SAO PAULO (AFP) –

British Formula One driver Lewis Hamilton powers his McLaren during free practice at Interlagos in Sao Paulo, Brazil

British Formula One driver Lewis Hamilton powers his McLaren at the S of Senna turn during the free practices at Interlagos in Sao Paulo, Brazil. The in-form McLaren team believe they have no reason to fear the forecast wet conditions for this weekend’s Brazilian Grand Prix and can dominate if it rains or remains dry.

The in-form McLaren team believe they have no reason to fear the forecast wet conditions for this weekend’s Brazilian Grand Prix and can dominate if it rains or remains dry.

Lewis Hamilton was fastest in both of Friday’s free practice sessions to dominate the day ahead of defending champion Sebastian Vettel of Red Bull.

But with heavy rain forecast for Saturday night and Sunday, many close observers believe McLaren may lose that advantage to teams which have concentrated on a wet set-up with higher down-force — a theory rejected by the team.

Sporting director Sam Michael said he was confident McLaren were able to deal with all conditions.

Michael said: “Last time in the wet we were quite fast, so that is our last data point.

“So, we changed two or three things after that and hopefully those changes means we can be quicker in those conditions. But until you run in the wet you don’t know.

“You can always come away thinking you are really good in the wet, and you have a bad race again and it changes.”

But Michael said it would be a very difficult challenge to defeat both Red Bull and Ferrari in wet conditions.

“I don’t mind what we get, to be honest, I am pretty neutral on it. Coming first and second against Red Bull and Ferrari would be pretty tough, and the weather can go either way on you. We don’t mind.

“Our target this weekend is to finish first and second, because if we finish first and second we will finish second in the constructors’ championship no matter what happens to anyone else.

“Whether we can achieve that or not remains to be seen. Both drivers were very competitive this morning, but we will try and win it and come second.”

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