Leading the Grand Prix of Malaysia in the closing stages by more than 20 seconds, Team Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton, in pursuit of his third consecutive F1 Championship, saw his engine blow with just 15 laps remaining in the race.

He had strong feelings and unkind words for his Mercedes team when he returned to the pits. Hamilton was anything but circumspect in suggesting that he feels as though there is a conspiracy against him due to the repeated mechanical issues with which he has dealt of late.

Hamilton pointed out that amongst eight Mercedes cars; his is the only one to experience consistent engine failures.

The engine that failed him in Malaysia was one of three Mercedes power plants at his disposal and this particular one had only one other race on it.

This latest failure to finish has Hamilton trailing his teammate Nico Rosberg by 23 points. He has to figure out a way to close that gap with only four races remaining.

Mercedes technical director Paddy Lowe vigorously refuted that the team is giving Hamilton poor treatment.

AS things stand at this point of the season, Hamilton could take a shopping cart out on the course and probably do no worse than second in the season standings, leading, as he does, Red Bull driver Daniel Ricciardo by 61 points.