MARCH 19, 2014
No new driver era in F1 says Hamilton
Lewis Hamilton has baulked at claims a new guard is sweeping into power in formula one.
After the V6 era kicked off in Melbourne, podium debutant Kevin Magnussen was hailed as McLaren's 'new Hamilton', while fellow rookie Daniil Kvyat stood out as the next Red Bull-fuelled talent in the Sebastian Vettel-like mould.
Daniel Ricciardo also stepped into the retired Mark Webber's shoes with ease at Red Bull, outqualifying and outracing quadruple world champion Vettel and causing many to wonder if a 'new era' has dawned.
2008 world champion Hamilton, however, doesn't think so.
"You still have ... Vettel, myself, Alonso and Kimi," F1's 29-year-old world champion of 2008 said.
"It's not a new era," Hamilton insisted. "It's just a new wave of youngsters coming through."
Dane Magnussen, in particular, was hailed by none other than Hamilton's discoverer, former mentor Ron Dennis, as a future champion.
"He has all the ingredients necessary to win a world championship," Dennis said.
Hamilton may be unconvinced, but he did applaud the 21-year-old's debut podium in Melbourne -- a feat he himself achieved in a McLaren back in 2007.
"Kevin did a fantastic job," he said. "I'm very impressed with his job. Well done to him."