Mar.14 (GMM) Former McLaren driver Mark Blundell has questioned whether Lewis Hamilton and Heikki Kovalainen can effectively lead the British team from the cockpit this year.
Following the departure of Fernando Alonso, the Mercedes-powered team's new lineup has just 34 grands prix of racing experience between them.Blundell rates his British compatriot Hamilton highly, but thinks his new role as de-facto number one is a big weight to carry with only one season behind him."The dynamic has changed for Hamilton and we don't know yet how that will affect him," Blundell, who raced 63 times in the 90s and its now a commentator, wrote in a column for the Daily Telegraph.He said double world champion Alonso was a famously controversial figure in the Woking team last year, but still contributed greatly to McLaren's top form."He brought a lot of direction to the team in terms of technical expertise and how to set up across a race weekend," Blundell added.Hamilton, meanwhile, last year as a rookie "just turned up and drove", Blundell said."Now a sporting megastar, (he) has to develop in this new role while at the same time win a championship," he added.Kovalainen, meanwhile, has talent but is still largely an unknown quantity, Blundell insists."If things don't go quite right for McLaren, the driver pairing does not yet have the depth to get them out of difficulties," he added."They simply do not have the experience to match the Ferrari boys. That is an area for concern."