Force India’s Adrian Sutil has suggested he and Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton are still some way off sorting out their differences after the two came face-to-face in an FIA press conference today for the first time this season.
The duo were once good friends, having got on well as they made their way through the various junior formulae and in their first few years in Formula 1 together.
The situation changed in 2011, though, when Sutil was involved in an incident in a Shanghai nightclub following Hamilton’s Chinese Grand Prix win.
Sutil had hoped Hamilton would serve as a witness, but it never materialised. Sutil was convicted of causing grievous bodily harm for assaulting Lotus executive Eric Lux. The 30-year-old was given an 18-month suspended sentence and a 200,000 euro (£166,139) fine.
The German missed last season, but returned with Force India in 2013. And while Hamilton was quite open when asked about the situation in the press conference ahead of this weekend’s Monaco Grand Prix, Sutil was far more reserved.
“Things are different, definitely,” said Hamilton. “We’ve spoken a couple of times and we’ve planned to get together at some stage and just have a chat basically.
“We’ve been great friends for a long, long time and we’ve had some of the best times together along the way, especially, as you said, in Formula Three times.
“You can only really count your good friends on one hand maybe, so as people say, good friends are hard to come by, so I want to make sure we get things right.”
Sutil then added: “Well, as he said, yes, different and I’m still waiting for a coming together. I can’t say anything more.”