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Hamilton ends sixth

Published:Monday | March 29, 2010 | 12:00 AM

MELBOURNE, Australia (CMC):

A questionable second tyre stop cost Lewis Hamilton precious time and he had to settle for sixth place in the Australian Grand Prix, which was won by compatriot and McLaren-Mercedes teammate, Jensen Button, yesterday.

A McLaren one-two appeared to be in the making at Albert Park, as the British race-car driver, whose grandparents are from the Spice Isle of Grenada, mowed down his rivals and was third with only Button and Poland's Robert Kubica in the Renault ahead of him less than half of the 58 laps to drive.

But Hamilton heeded a questionable call from his pit to change his tyres and this dropped the 2008 World champion back and obliged him to fight again to catch up with the front-runners.

"Unfortunately due to the strategy I was put further back and then I got taken out by Mark Webber," Hamilton told TV reporters, after earlier describing the pit stop as a "terrible idea" over the team radio.

"I am happy with the job that I did. I think I honestly drove my heart out and I think I deserved better than what I ended up with. But I'll keep fighting to the next race."

Hamilton added: "All I know is that the guys always do a fantastic job, but the strategy was not right. Everyone else in front of me did one stop, for some reason I did two. I don't know (who called me in), but we'll find out."