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Edgy Monaco weekend deepens tensions between Hamilton and Rosberg
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Posted By: Justin Hynes  |  26 May 2014   |  4:53 pm GMT  |  516 comments

If Saturday’s cold body language between Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg – following the qualifying incident in which Rosberg claimed pole – suggested that the pair’s relationship had reached wintry levels, the icy words that followed Rosberg’s win ahead of Hamilton confirmed that things have now become positively arctic.

Although comparisons with the toxic team-mate relationship between Senna and Prost are premature, the basis of that was a breakdown of trust, which the team could not repair.

There has been a breakdown of trust between Hamilton and Rosberg in the last few races, with illicit use of engine modes and now the qualifying incident in Monaco.

Niki Lauda has pledged to reconcile the pair, but Hamilton looks like he’s gone into siege mentality – is he minded to play his part in a reconciliation?

It will be interesting to see whether Lauda’s efforts put an elastoplast over the situation, or a proper long-term fix.

Hamilton went on the offensive straight away following Rosberg’s win saying during the podium interviews that he felt he [Hamilton] had had great pace in the race and in an apparent reference to the previous day’s qualifying session that “fortunately we didn’t make any mistakes”.

His next broadside came in the FIA press conference where Hamilton again referred to fairness in the battle between the drivers.

“I had very good pace. I drove with all my heart and gave it all I could, fairly, and I feel like I drove fairly all weekend,” he said pointedly. “So I leave today quite happy and I can go into the next race with even more energy and determination.”

The Briton went to cast more of his own suspicions on Rosberg’s actions on Saturday. Asked if he had been in the room while Rosberg’s post-session debrief had taken place Hamilton said: “I was in there. I went to the toilet and Nico did his big debrief before I got there, which is unusual. Usually, we do it when we’re both in the same room but as I came up I did mine and fortunately the engineers had written down what Nico had said so I read it.”

What Hamilton was getting at was unclear, but Rosberg, for his part, toed a careful PR line when questioned about the growing animosity between the two drivers.

Asked if he and his team-mate would “sit down, have pizza and work it out”, the German insisted there was no conflict.

“It’s fine. We’ve had discussions and the benefit we have is that we’ve known each other for so long. We always sit down and discuss it and then move on and that’s what we’re doing this weekend also,” he said.

Rosberg did, however, use the occasion of the press conference to wage a small slice of psychological warfare on his team-mate, saying twice that the Monaco victory had broken Hamilton’s recent momentum.

“It’s a special win, definitely, because Lewis has had the momentum with the results and everything and I really needed to try to break that momentum and I managed to do that this weekend. Of course taking the leading again in the world championship and winning here in Monaco, yeah, all in all really, really cool.”

Rosberg also denied that he had told a German newspaper that Hamilton was prone to cracking under pressure.

“That is definitely very, very far from anything that I’ve ever said and ever would say,” he said. “Definitely not, and I’ve known Lewis for many, many years and he’s always been strong, among other things mentally, so I’m definitely not expecting him to crack any time soon, that’s for sure. It’s going to be a tough battle, which is going to be ongoing, but I would never say something like that.”

Hamilton was clearly frustrated during the race. When brought into the pits in the wake of the Safety Car’s emergence following Adrian Sutil’s crash a third of the way into the race, Hamilton repeatedly questioned the timing of the stop and the strategy behind it.

Later in asking for details of the gaps in the race and being informed of his advantage to Ricciardo, the Briton snapped that he didn’t care about that gap but wanted to know the deficit to Rosberg.

Quizzed about this attitude to the pit stop following the race, Hamilton was evasive.

“I don’t remember to be honest. I don’t,” he said. “I think they saw a crash and normally under the crash we could have come in and I really should have come in but the team didn’t call us in. We really should have pitted that lap.”

He was also evasive when asked about his comment of Saturday when he said he would handle the situation of Rosberg’s pole position “like Senna”. Asked to explain the comment Hamilton said: “I don’t know. I can’t really remember to be honest. I think it was just a joke. Obviously I didn’t.”

Asked if the gloves were now off in his battle with Rosberg, Hamilton said: “There is a fierce battle between me and Nico and it will continue that way to I’m sure quite late in the season. Nico’s not had a single hiccup through the season so far. Obviously I had a car that didn’t finish in Melbourne but otherwise it’s still quite close, so I’m just going to keep my head up, keep pushing.”

The final nail in the coffin of the duo’s friendship, which stretches back to their karting days, came, however, when Hamilton spoke to broadcasters after the press conference. Speaking about the relationship with Rosberg, Hamilton bluntly stated: “We are not friends. We are colleagues.”

Rosberg, too, cooled in the wake of the conference. “I don’t want to comment about Lewis in any way,” he told German television. “‘Friends’ is a big word. We work well together.”

It’s clear the battle lines between the two side of the Mercedes garage are being drawn deeper and deeper and it seems that the feud will only become more bitter as the season progresses.

Hamilton’s good fortune is that he has a chance to bounce back next week on one of his favourite tracks, Montreal, where he has won three times and had three pole positions.

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1

Nick's celebration at pole position on Saturday and the subsequent continued arrogance after the almost inevitable victory on Sunday don't sit right with me.

If his moral compass tells him that it was appropriate to celebrate, particularly after qualifying, one does question whether the same sort of person would have reversed back onto the track to deliberately block Lewis.

2

stewards say no foul, it's no foul.. lewis is a bad sport

3

That's just an opinion. Rosberg had provisional pole. You're using "what if's, could've been, would've been" to argue in favor of Hamilton. No one knows whether he would've beaten Nico's time. Whether he was 2/10s up or down on Sector 1 doesn't really make any difference. He could have gained or lost time on the last two sectors. How that lap would've turned out is anyone's guess.

Yes, Lewis was deprived of the opportunity to better his lap. His disappointment is understandable. Leave the past behind and bounce back in Canada.

Look at that weekend for reference, not the potential in the driver. Nico had an upper hand in qualification all the way through, except at the end of Q2, so why shouldn't he celebrate. He was on provisional pole and he stayed on pole. If that incident got to Hamilton mentally, and if it succeeded, it will only benefit Nico. It certainly affected some commentators here, and it did affect Lewis based on another story posted right here on JA on F1.

Lewis should come strong in Canada to regain momentum by setting Monaco aside. It won't be in Lewis' best interest to continue feeling bitter about this, because we've seen that he can be vulnerable (reference 2011). It's Lewis WDC to lose. Nico is still the unknown entity. The pressure is on Lewis to snatch 2014 WDC by default, not Rosberg. That's what everyone expects. Yes, we think the fight will be good throughout the year, but we expect Hamilton to win. It's his WDC to lose in the end.

Rosberg will not cry about it if that happens. It's an all-out psychological war from here on in. Stay calm, calculated, cunning and fast, and give us a memorable competition. leaving fairy tales, moral compass and Greek Tragedy aside.

4

I think the press attention is a little over blown as per usual. They are both good drivers BUT I think unless Lewis has reliability issues or puts it off the track badly a few times he will win the championship. I believe he just has that little bit extra with his racing. I do feel sorry for Fernando as I believe he also has this little bit extra ability. Lucky for Lewis he's in the Ferrari. 🙂

5

Agreed.

It is wrong to celebrate pole and/or the win at Monaco.

6

I did not think that he was arrogant at all celebrating the pole because he did mentioned that is not how he wanted it.

Driver who does not maximise every opportunity is 'not hungry' enough to win.

My only surprise is that Hamilton got so emotional. cry like baby throughout the weekend!

7

As much as I am a Hamilton fan (I respect outright speed over anything else). It is so embarrassing how petulant Hamilton is.

His maturity level is the lowest for any champion I can remember. Even Mansell was more of a man and less of a boy in his histrionics heydays.

8

@jim mansell was not a genius lewis is and all people struck by genius are prone to suffer from petulant, childish behaviour its as a result of having supernatural belief in there ability. They cannot ever accept or understand failure even when its not any fault of there own. If they are conscious and breathing and physically able to perform then for them success is guaranteed so strong is that belief.

9

seems you haven't been watching !

10

Nico celebrated pole simply bcoz he thought 'it was over'. Lewis beat him for the poles in the past races and he finally nailed one at home, out paced lewis in qualy, i dont see why he shouldnt have celebrated.

Lewis behaved like an unhappy kid, 'i dont remember' this and that, well i would forgive him if he was still in daniil or mag's age.

Before reading lewis interviews where he made comments about how nico grew up in a wealth family, i thought he was the spoiled one with interests in fashion, racing with diamond ear rings and sunglasses for interviews n photos. Nico certainly feels more down to earth n a professional sportsman, whereas lewis regards himself as the 'star', the celebrit of F1.

11

I still say it's Nico's turn to have a DNF to equal thing out. Does anybody disagree with that?

12

It's a shame Rosberg sold his soul to the devil to win one race. This is probably the best thing to happen to Hamilton as he will be even more determined to win the championship.....Starting from Canada I believe he will dominate the rest of the season.

13

I believe that all this has been a very dangerous obsessive figment in Hamilton's mind.

I haven't read of anything belligerent, in word or deed, from Nico to Lewis. On the contrary, Nico seems always the gentle, serious, decent guy to me.

And now I wonder if the eye situation was not a childish excuse by Lewis when he couldn't catch Rosberg...

14

It was Monaco, overtaking is nearly impossible and he followed Rosberg closely till late in the race.

Why would he make any excuses? Since overtaking can't be done the next most important thing is bringing the car home. And losing 2 secs per lap to Ricciardo doesn't seem normal by any means. Making small mistakes through the late stages also doesn't.

15

He had something in one of his eyes in the closing stages of the race, which made driving very difficult.

16

In Rod we Trust!

17

I thought Nico was a straight up sort of guy but since learning that he used a forbidden engine map when trying to beat Lewis in Bahrain, it puts a different complexion things.

Sure Lewis retaliated in Spain in like manner but can you blame him?

I can understand now how the mistrust has set in, and it wasn't Lewis who started it.

18

+1

I wonder what happened in Malaysia though, when Rosberg was way off the pace … ?

Right now it is Rosberg 2 (Monaco and Bahrein) and Hamilton 1 (Spain) in the [mod] charts.

I hope the journalists dig deeper into the first half of the season instead of making silly comparisons with the Senna Prost rivalry.

19

Do you think if the roles had been reversed in Bahrain that Lewis wouldn't have done the same, and that Rosberg wouldn't have returned serve in Spain (again assuming the roles there were also reversed)? I think regardless of who did it first, both of them are willing to test the limits of what they'll be allowed to get away with.

That said, I'm surprised Lewis just whined on the radio about the pit strategy after it was too late. If he knew there was going to be a safety car, why not back off from Rosberg a bit and then give the team a last minute warning that he'd be coming in for tyres whether they liked it or not? Don't give them enough time to respond and get Rosberg in first, don't give them any option but to do his stop. What they gonna do? "No, we're not giving you new tyres. Get back out on the track and don't come back in until we tell you to." But I suppose it's easy to come up with devious plans when you're sitting comfortably on the couch, rather than hurtling around Monaco.

20

This is exactly what he should have done. Priority goes to the lead driver so no point in asking. If he knew he should pit as that was his only chance to take the lead he should have boxed as soon as he saw that Rosberg hadn't.

I reckon in a similar position a driver such as Alonso would have done just that. As good as Lewis is, he always waits for the team to tell him what to do

21

No, it matters who does it first because it is that person who pushes the rivalry to the "no rules" zone.

22
Yngwie Malmsteen

All I can say is I was very sad because Ferrari were not performing but now.....

Comon LEWIS!!!!

23

Yes, he is a rising force

24

Let's see if I understand correctly; Rosberg, Mercedes F-1 team management, and the stewards at Monaco are all out to sabotage Lewis? All this in just one weekend?

I can't wait to see what happens to poor Lewis at the next race. This has the makings of a fine soap opera!

25

Spot on.

Lewis has always had this "not my fault its a conspiracy" attitude - remember a couple of seasons ago when he said "maybe its cause I'm black" after he kept getting penalised for smashing into every second driver he tried to overtake?

I'm also sick of him comparing himself to Senna. If Senna was in that second Mercedes he would have flogged Hamilton in the race by 30 seconds

26

@chet lewis has never compared himself to senna he has only ever hoped that other people compare him to senna by his blinding speed and overall ability. and if you believe senna would beat lewis by thirty seconds whilst they both drive the current Mercedes car you are most certainly deluded

27
John Wainwright

No true conspiracy/sabotage just may be a case of getting away with it. Hamilton has inferred that he has seen the data that suggests a deliberate act. Not sure I believe this but as I said I don't think it was premeditated but an impulsive act which may have been missed by the stewards (they do miss things at times!). And as for Mercedes, why should they rock the boat. They will want the matter ended ASAP. No one emerges with any great credit. Nico a tainted win in many eyes and Lewis back to his sulking and paranoid days. Hope Canada brings a straightforward race and may the best racer win.

28

when Hamilton said "wish I could show you the data" he meant he was faster on that lap (first sector) which would have put him on pole.

29

He braked too late on a place, where mistake allmost 100% causes yellow flags. So for me, the only question is, what was the real reason for too/late braking?

1. pure intention to cause yellow flags or

2.going on/over(!) the limit with constant awareness that any mistake on certan parts of the track would benefit him (therefore he risked a little bit more than at 3rd option-below) or

3. going on(!) the limit with pure intention to improve lap time, though mistake happened(clean as a tear - he relly didn't wan't to make any mistake- therefore he risked a little less than at 2nd option-above) .

Now it's up to you to decide which of those 3 options is the true one.

30

You forgot option 4, is that Hamilton push Rosberg on oil.

31

Hey, Gudien!

It goes like this--when you're on a flying pole position lap at Monaco and you make a mistake, you hit the barriers or wall and your car is destroyed!

32

Of course not simply Rosberg. His deliberate runoff was real in every sense. He made it happen and no wrong doing was detectable within the regulations. - The intent to prevent Lewis completing his pole lap was definately there no question and only the naive would see it any other way.

33

My feelings exactly.

Siddle

34

I think Nico poked a Tiger and woke up the beast. HAM has beaten better teammates before. Including Alonso (in his rookie year). Lets not forget, HAM beat Ros last year without trying too hard. ( And with bad brakes)

HAM has played the nice guy too long. I think he'll be ruthless and much more focused, Too humiliate ROS.

I think ROS played his cards too early. HAM knows his game. And the gloves are off. Be ready to be humiliated ROSBERG.

35

I agree. there is nothing more dangerous than a wounded animal! I think Rosberg has finally realised he cant beat lewis by trying to be faster so he is exploring other options. unfortunately convincing lewis you have just cheated him out of a possible pole lap and race win is not the answer either. I think it smacks of desperation from Rosberg

36

Think your a bit over excited there. Rosberg done him like a kipper at Monaco. Hamilton has risen too the bait. He said he would deal with it like senna, I did nt see that. He was behind Rosberg all race and moaned over radio for 3 laps they should have brung him in, why did he not take the opportunity too come in himself and make the pit stop giving him the advantage? Instead he chose too blame the team over the radio.

37

That is what I am waiting to see. Lewis will feel that he was cheated out of a possible win this weekend and will do everything to not let it repeat itself this year. Thats a win win situation for us fans

38

Let's get one thing clear, when you quote Ham as beating Alonso your talking about a guy who decided to leave his team before the year was even over, to leave a competitive team and go to an uncompetitive team willingly. If you are trying to accurately judge, be accurate. Hamilton cries over the radio nowadays and criticises his team now openly. And Button kicked his a. Why did you not bring that up??

39

@snarfsnarf please quantify your remark that button kicked Lewis's bottom over the three seasons they drove together

40

You may be right.

41

hamilton now knows what rosberg is all about so he can keep his eyes peeled at every hiding place. threaten all those against him that he will reveal their tactical nonsense to the media if they try it again may be enough to prevent them from doing it again but he still needs to keep an eye out for them as rosberg cannot be trusted.

42

The done thing in other sports, such as tennis when a net chord goes in a player's favour, is to apologise first and celebrate second. Rosberg chose to celebrate immediately afterwards and only later said it was a bit of a hollow pole when speaking to the press after he'd seen the controversy brewing.

It's also worth noting that in an article by Ed Straw on Autosport, usually a first rate source, he claims there was dissent amongst the stewards over the Rosberg verdict suggesting that at least one steward felt there was enough evidence to punish Rosberg. Obviously the history books will show that Rosberg was found innocent but there'll always, justifiably in my opinion, be lingering doubts about the incident and Rosberg's character. I honestly didn't think him capable of such an act before Saturday but there's so many little things that feel off about it that I've had to change my opinion.

43

Very well said - a snooker player gets a fluke - what's the first thing they do?

They certainly do not immediately pretend it was on purpose, break the opponents cue and run around celebrating.

The reversing was the issue.

It made me laugh he was so desperate to reverse they had to change the clutch.

And before the comments start Samurai - I am not defending LH - I am making a comment on the behaviour that no one involved in qualifying was happy with.

How like Niki to throw some petrol on the fire. He had to start with his ridiculous behaviour at some point.

Ask anyone who has worked for him!

44

its funny how we look at this,

because you have to remember these guys are there to win at all cost,

so we read things into it that might or might not be true,

we analyze the facts and make up our mind with which hero we are most impressed with and add our small impression to it, regardless how we feel it is still in favour of who we may support,

what no one seams to realize is we will for ever support our hero's and see things they way we wont,

what we do realize is these guys are there to win,

regardless, they will take every opportunity to win this coming championship,

if you where either driver i am sure you would be doing the same,

we are talking about history in the making,

and everything else is forgotten at the end of the day except who won the championship..

45

They're there... "to win at all costs"?

No, they're NOT: they're there to win fairly and cleanly. Anything else is dishonest and ruins the sport for drivers, teams and spectators. I think a lack of understanding of what constitutes 'sportsmanship' is at the heart of many problems in sport.

46

I think the stewards said that no offence was committed. This is not saying it was clearly a mistake. It's acknowledging the fact that in leaving the circuit, and then rejoining it safely, Nico committed no offence, even if it was a wilful expedition. The yellow flag does not mean you shouldn't complete your Lap, and what's expected is that you slow down to ensure you don't put lives in danger. Hamilton chose to bail on the lap after the yellows(as did everyone else!) because going faster through a yellow is generally taken as ignoring the yellow flags. Which incurs penalties, but Hamiltons choice to follow the rules are not Nicos problem!

I think Nico saw an opportunity and decided to take it and deL with the consequences. Exactly what HAM should have done after sutils crash!

47

"I think Nico saw an opportunity and decided to take it..."

Which is exactly why Nico should have been less jubilant and more circumspect after qualifying. The comparison with Lewis is flawed. Lewis perhaps should have taken advantage of an opportunity that had occurred without any input from him.

48

+1 So true, and dont you find the statement " I didnt know where Lewis was when I decided to reverse" quite odd considering he had just left the garage FIRST with 2 minutes of the session remaining....Seriously where else could Lewis have been. For the so called "cerebral" racer that supposed oversight I also find quite strange.

49

I totally agree with most of your comments MattNZ, but Lewis should have stopped showing his dislpleasure after qualifying. Hamilton had better realize that he works for Mercedes, and acting the way that he had after the race conclusion, will not sit well and be tolerated by the Mercedes Board. I believe that he should apologize to the team, but Nico's celebratory action's especially the way that he won the pole, needs to be also addressed by the team.

50

I find it amazing how many people are upset with Hamilton's actions. I feel Hamilton's were totally justified.

Just look at how far Hamilton as come, I'm so excited he's just reaching for his talent. This weekend he has made a fan out of one of Vettel's most ardent supporters (still am).

Addressed by the team? Rosberg and Hamilton showed real emotions. Rosberg showed his true colors. Hamilton was upset because he couldn't even do anything about because he is racing his teammate.

Jesus, people are acting like Hamilton crashed into Rosberg or something. As a Vettel fan, I enjoyed his domination, but now we finally have a very compelling story the first since 2007 and you want to squash it as soon as it appears? People moan about how every driver is a PR machine and now you want the drivers to get a stern talking to by the team? I'm not just singling you out, this goes for many of the replies of others over the weekend.

So what do you want? PR machine or real person?

51
wotsomu wanda

+1

52

+1 - apart from the bit about being a Vettel fan 😉

53

I agree. There's no question Nico knows he spoilt Lewis's chances of pole. Therefore his celebrations should have been muted and he should have apologised straight after qualifying. Based on previous events we all know that if roles had been reversed, Hamilton would have been subdued after the race and saying repeatedly that he would have preferred to have won in a fair fight.

Given the way things panned out I think Lewis handled the race extremely well. Making a banzai attempt to overtake would have been a natural outcome for many drivers in Lewis's position but instead he's playing the long game. He knows he has the measure of Nico in a fair fight ("I have the speed") and he'll show him who's boss in the coming races. He also knows how far Nico is willing to stretch the rules to win. So they have both learnt something about the other this weekend.

54
John Wainwright

I agree completly with you on this. Apologise for sounding frightfully English but "Poor form old boy":)

Seriously my first thoughts on the Q3 incident itself was that it was a simple accident. However, after viewing the inboard shots and seeing the seesawing steering wheel before the lock up and the still yet unexplained (or lack of questioning by journalists) reversing have started to lead me to doubt Nico's integrity. I don't for a moment think he planned it before hand but that it was possiblly hatched in panic. It is a shame to think this of him as even though I am a Hamilton fan (No fanboy, I'm 50 years old and have watched GP since early 80s), I had the utmost respect for Nico as I do for most other drivers. I actually think that Nico would have held on to pole anyhow as I don't believe Lewis could gain enough to make the difference up before sector 3 where Nico was so strong.

I know that Lewis is no angel (Liegate, etc) but I feel that he has too much pride (arrogance?) in his driving abilities that he would never show a driver weakness willingly. He sulks enough when it happens in normal circumstances! I say this as an immense fan of him as a driver.

55

Nico was down (+0.124) in his second run in the first sector. I don't think he could have bettered his pole time since he was that much down in the first sector. While Hamilton was almost two tenths up in the first sector already. The fact is that Nico cost Hamilton and other drivers a decent shot to better their respective times. If that was OK for you, then lets wait and see how you would react when the situation reverses.

56

Actually there's no need to talk about the reversing, the wheel-shaking is so obviously fake.

57
German Samurai

Is it okay to celebrate a win if the car in front of you has a mechanical breakdown or the driver makes an error? Or does everyone have to walk around eggshells if it affects Hamilton.

When Nico got out of the car he was pumped up having got the most important pole of the year. He's the one who set the fastest lap at the beginning of Q3 after all.

When he got out of the car he didn't realise that his teammate and most of the British media would be insinuating that he was a [mod] for making an error on a part of the circuit where it's easiest to if you're right on the limit.

If merely celebrating has had such an effect on British fans you have to wonder what kind of effect it had on Hamilton as they were getting out of the cars!

58

If the situation between Hamilton and Nico in Monaco was reversed, wouldn't you criticizes Hamilton or would you still maintain your position now?

59

Lets be honest @German Samurai if the circumstances had been reversed than you would have said the complete opposite.

60

Well said!

61

How do you know?

62

Well said.

63

One bit of good news for you, all this talk about Hamilton/Rosberg means at least no one is discussing how Vettel was out qualified and beaten in the race by Riccy. I guess you must be relieved about that 🙂

Incidentally, why do you think Ricky is besting Vettel this season? I know Vettel has had some mechanical issues (mainly because he is tough on the car, driving too hard to make up his deficit)but even when these are discounted Ricky has definitely got his measure. A 4 x current WDC should be brushing Ricky aside, and he ain't.

What's your theory?

64

While the "down the escape road after lock-up" seems to clear him, the "but once I was reversing" does not; it makes him guilty as dirt, as only an idiot would start backing up and interfering with drivers trying to finish with their best laps.

65
German Samurai

If Rosberg stayed in the run off area, the double yellow would have been waved for the remainder of the session, meaning everyone's lap would be ruined any way.

66

I fully agree. Given that there was no further opportunity to do any more laps there was no rush or imperrative for Nico to return to the track. So the "decent" thing would have been to accept the error, driver further down the escape road to be out of harms way and not interefere with others. However, whilst they all maintain that they want to win the championship fighting the best on equal terms blah, blah, blah, their behaviour (Lewis, Nico, Sebastian, Fernando et al) is to not just concentrate on doing their own job to the best of their abilities but to hamper their opposition however and whenever they can.

That really does turn me against them and why we end up cheering for the underdog. And that's why we call them spoilt little rich kids that throw their toys out of their prams when things don't go their way. Low morals and totally devoid of integrity. That ain't sportsmanship in my book. I genuinely thought Nico was better than that but guess I was proven wrong. They just want to win by whatever means, fair or foul, and to hell with good, clean, tough competition.

67

let them be themselves and you be yourself. if you don't like them en it's your problem, not theirs.

68

Yes it's funny how the only analysis of body language seems to be restricted to HAM, because I made the same observation about ROS at the time.

It seemed a un-sportsmanlike celebration, and yet attracted zero media comment.

Had HAM done the same, I can't imagine how some of the media and fans would have reacted, given their negative obsession with HAM.

69
Rodrigo Martins

What do you think Rosberg should do ? Cry ? And it was Hamilton fault... They know how is monaco so he should garantee pole on his first attempt.

70

that is because hamilton is the biggest star in f1.

71

@ deleon, it's not unusual for the desperate to select the tiniest of evidence they like and ignore the overwhelming evidence against their desperate line of thought.

72

@aveli - thanks for quoting the article from Sky.

I like the comment from Jensen - "Whether Nico did it on purpose or not, Lewis is going to think that he did...." and thats all that counts.

73

Agreed, allot has been made of Lewis's behaviour over the weekend, (I do agree it wasn't the best) but I really didn't agree with the way Nico jumped out of his car on Saturday punching the air. A touch of humility would have been more appropriate, especially as he only had pole by default...

74
Just an F1 fan

As much as I enjoy and respect Hamilton's natural talent, it seems to me he could appear stronger in difficult times instead of sulking and behaving in that manner.

Jenson was just too wise to be dragged into matters like these but rewind to the Alonso/Hamilton era and it's '50 First dates' all over again.

75

This is a very good point you are making here @Just an F1 Fan. And I would like to add that something (mental strengh or maturity or whatever) seems to be missing on top of his lavish natural talent to make Lewis Hamilton, the ultimate racing machine; Something I see in MotoGP's Marc Marquez. I am kind of a hardcore fan of LH and whether Rosberg did cook it all or not, we will never know for sure. Most importantly, the regulations inforcing autorities after investigations concluded it was a genuine mistake and awarded him pole position. So let it go. The season is long and cheats always end up exposed. So I think Lewis should concentrate on doing the talking on the track in order to regain the championship lead. That is the only way forward Lewis.

76

he is hamilton, not you. may be you are able to appear strong under difficulty but he doesn't know how to do that. he knows how to drive his car and you don't know how to do that either so why not just allow him to be who he is and you be who you are?

77

I'd say that was a mind game. Just like Hamilton saying Nico is a spoiled little rich kid who doesn't have the hunger to be champion. There is nothing moral about any of their actions really - they can deny it but both are playing for every tiny psychological advantage - even if it fails, they have to try.

The fact is everyone was going on and on about Senna and his true and total unwillingness to lose. We call him a legend and suggest many fine drivers lack the killer instinct or are too 'soft' to win. We've had many people over the years promoting Schumacher and Vettel - defending their sometimes 'grey' decisions as the mark of true champions - why anyone thinks that Nico or Lewis aren't built the same way is kidding themselves.

Let's face it - in 2 or 3 years we'll remember only that they won and they will be remembered in history as a WDC (or multiple) and the details will be hazy.

If celebrating a pole position would unsettle your slightly faster teammate - and you knew that unsettling your teammate was your best weapon to force them into errors - wouldn't you celebrate the pole position? Given Lewis and Nico are the only threat to each other they need to break the other by any means necessary. Nico knows Lewis' performs better when he's mentally in a happy place. An angry or frustrated Hamilton has made mistakes in the past. Nico knows that and he knows Lewis is talking about him in the media, suggesting he's not got what it takes - he's fighting on every front now.

78

@aveli - OK, so you mean the Jenson Button interview where he makes my point for me -

'But you will see a more determined Lewis at the next race. I remember with Lewis that when we had a tussle in a race or there was an issue between us or with the team, he would have a really bad race and be quite outspoken and emotional. And at the next race he would destroy me. He would come back stronger than ever.'

Yes, he says Lewis will bounce back at Canada and reacts better coming back from an adverse weekend, but as I said, if you'd actually read rather than just running through the comments attacking anyone who you think has offended your hero, he gets emotional and reacts badly during weekends when he has a tussle or fractious reaction to the team.

I didn't say Nico was winning the war, simply that it was all mind games on both sides and Nico's best and only real hope is to put Lewis back into that angry, frustrated mode where he made mistakes. You can bang on that it's all a media myth, but we all saw in 2011 where Lewis had bad emotional weekends he made mistakes. It's just a fact - even his team admit that.

So relax, admit that these drivers are not 5 year olds, they have to be responsible for their actions. They are also incredibly single minded. Don't expect them not to take any advantage, even if it seems unsportsmanlike, sadly there are not many prizes for good sportsmanship, but there are riches and legends of those who win.

I'm not commenting either way of Nico's quali 'fumble' whether it was deliberate or accidental - we will NEVER know, unless someone develops psychic powers. It will forever be opinion. What we can say is that Nico celebrating the pole visibly upset Hamilton and that was almost certainly calculated on Nico's part. He has seen that a calm and happy Lewis is just dominant in a terrifying manner. So he's looked back and thought - oh yeah, Lewis has been marked as more 'emotional' than some, and that's probably my last best hope.

I agree with Button however, the danger for Nico is that an angry Lewis may falter at one weekend but he tends to come back with a vengeance at the next race.

I am neither supporting Nico nor suggesting his tactics will win the championship, I'm saying that he's not going to worry about a few 'I say that's unsporting to celebrate' tone comments when it might be his only shot at being faster than Lewis.

And at the end of the season, if (and I think this is unlikely) he does beat Hamilton, most people will forget about the manner in which he acted at some pole victories and say he's a WDC in the same car as Lewis Hamilton. So Nico wouldn't even have the anti-Vettel statements that his car was so far ahead of his challengers they aren't worth anything.

79

I agree with you on all counts, but I think Hamilton is better equipped to handle the difficulties of racing rather than his personal life.

This weekend may have rattled Hamilton but he was still totally on the pace and drove very well. I wouldn't think the same would happen if him and Nicole had another fight.

Nico should not have celebrated because this won't negatively affect Hamilton's driving. I feel he will drive like Webber against the wall.

But then again maybe this is what Nico needed to do, after all the plain truth is Hamilton has utterly decimated him so far this season. I say this because almost all advantages Rosberg has had is because of Hamilton's misfortune and hard work. The first race Hamilton retired, then Nico looking at Hamilton's telemetry to help him to pole (disclosed by Mercedes not my words), yellow flags in Monaco.

And yes decimate is the right word because if Nico Rosberg happened to be Sebastian Vettel these facts would be repeated in these comments hundreds of times.

80
wotsomu wanda

1+

81

here is button telling you that exactly how hamilton's mood affects him.

i prefer the truth to myths.

http://www1.skysports.com/f1/news/24181/9327816/jenson-button-feels-an-unhappy-lewis-hamilton-will-be-untouchable-in-canada

82

rosberg parked his car and hamilton doesn't need any special mental stability to win races. it is all a myth. hamilton can and has won races on some of his worse days.

I think rosberg's actions were futile simply because there are a total of 19 races this season and the other teams seem painstaking slow in their development rate. will rosberg win in germany? what other tricks could he use at the other circuits? we all saw hamilton reovertake rosberg while rosberg sat in the faster car. it's simple to decide which of them is the better driver by looking at the body language of the cars in predatory mode. hamilton is a poor prey because his car looks agonisingly ugly while being under attack, putting doubt in the attackers mind. whereas rosberg looks just as good while being attacked as when attacking. hamilton spells gloriously finesse in predatory mode.

83

How do you know? Maybe Lewis was too fast and would have made the same breaking mistake.

Anyhow, there are only 2 things that matter each season. Monaco GP and WDC. I think that's why Lewis feels so strongly about it.

As I said below, I think if I was Lewis I'd probably want to belive it was on purpose. I wouldn't want to think that F1 Gods are so against me that they would unfold a chain of events like this just to not make me have the Monaco GP win this year. If it was just a freak chain of events, that may make me question if "luck" is on my side...b ut only if I was Lewis of course. 🙂

84
devilsadvocate

I don't get where everyone is seeing all the intrigue and mal intent from Nico. He stuffed it on a make or break lap while the track was improving and was almost certainly justified in being relieved that he didnt end up paying too heavily.

Its bit of a stretch to say he did it on purpose, he would have to be quite stupid to do that, if for nothing else he trashes the car into the barriers it doesnt matter if he makes pole and then cant make the grid the next day. Too much at stake.

Also pretty sure the flags were out before he reversed, so again, not sure why everyone is focusing on that. Hamilton has his fair share of deliberate "mistakes" that have helped him out and never got punished for so I think everyone should be a lot more quiet with their accusations.

85

@devilsadvocate, your list is pretty much all garbage, and I'll explain how for each.

He passed the SC in Valencia 2010 ... he was penalized, he served the penalty. So he was punished. They changed the rules about it later.

During Germany 2012, what's he supposed to do? He was faster than those other cars. After he passed Vettel, he pulled away from him. I think when you get clipped by a lapped car (Chilton on Kimi this past race, Bottas on Lewis in Brazil last year), that's not kosher.

Again, no mistake, and no rule against what Lewis did in Germany 2012.

Again, he was assessed a penalty at Monaco 2011. He might not have suffered b/c of it, but he didn't benefit from it either.

For lying to the stewards in AUS09, he was DISQUALIFIED. How do you get "... and never got punished" out of that?!

The crane thing was at EUR07, and I don't see how he benefitted. He went a lap down b/c he spun off, along with 5 other cars, at turn 1. The race was red-flagged, and HAM took the restart a lap down. He finished up 9th, with no points.

CAN08, not sure how he benefitted from hitting the back of Kimi. He had a good chance to win that race. I guess you could say he took out Kimi, but at the cost of ruining his own race and getting a 10-place penalty for the next race, where he again scored no points finishing 10th (from 13th), and dropping to 4th in the DWC standings. Yeah, he benefitted greatly from that mistake!

Words have meaning. Think about what you write, so you're able to stand behind them, when called on it.

86
devilsadvocate

Um this year not a ton I'll admit, but from memory passing the safety car in Barcelona 2011 (one of the spanish races) so he could pit during the SC without losing 2nd place to Alonso who had already stopped. Think it was 2012 when he decided he would fight with the lead lap cars even though he was a lap down, not really a mistake but generally accepted by anyone not british to be quite dirty racing since it ended up trashing one of the lead driver's races. Same for all those times he decided to just go bumper cars with other drivers in one season, Monaco 2011 being a stellar example, he ruined 2 or 3 peoples' races and wound up with nothing more than a retroactive drive through penalty that if I remember correct didnt really affect his standings in the race due to all the attrition, and then came off with a relative slap on the wrist even after he blew up like a teenage girl throwing a temper tantrum after the stewards. Lying to the stewards when he let Timo pass under safety car 2009. I think it was qualifying in Germany either 07 or 08 when he spun off and managed to benefit from a red-flag and got his car craned out back onto the track. Stuffing his car into the back of Kimi's ferrari in Montreal that time because a racing driver was "too distracted to see the red light".. I mean these is not an exhaustive list but Hamilton isnt really in a position to be mad about Nico spinning off or alleging some nefarious plot to do him in, especially since there is no real proof other than a bunch of bloodthirsty brits claiming as much.

87

The point is that he didn't "trash the car into the barriers", he locked up and sailed down an escape road, at one of only 3 places (I believe, alone with St Devote and the swimming pool) that such a move would have been possible. If he'd binned it in the tunnel Sutil-style I don't think anyone would be talking about it. The "mistake" was all up-side and no down-side whatsoever.

Also, please enlighten us as to the miryiad of deliberate "mistakes" Hamilton has had in his career similar to this?

88

If the person who was disadvantaged was English it was therefore done on purpose and there is a fanciful and complex conspiracy involved. Duh.

89

I think the reason people are questioning it is the lead up to the wheel locking and bailing out down the escape road looks to some to be a bit sketchy. I'm not 100% on it myself, and if I had the slightest hope in understanding what any of it meant I'd be wishing we could see the data ourselves.

We see him turning the wheel left and right immediately after braking, without any real obvious indication as to why. Certainly he was turning right long before the corner. Then when he turns in to the corner, his front right still isn't locked. It's only when he starts straightening it back up that he locks the wheel, and then briefly locks both fronts as he gets closer to the barriers and the escape road.

So maybe he felt the car was off balance when he hit the brakes and was trying to correct it, and trying to go easy on the brakes while he straightened it up. From there he hit the turn in point, at which point he realised he was simply carrying too much speed, started to straighten it up so he could smash the brakes and bail out. Or maybe he was sawing away with the wheel to try induce a controlled "accidental" lock up, conveniently at one of the few places around Monaco with an escape road to aim for.

That said, if the latter was what he was trying to achieve... he didn't do a very good job of being discrete about it. One would think a driver of that calibre could pull off a more convincing "accident" than that if they wanted to do so. The fact that it's so "obvious" makes me lean towards thinking there's no way he would have done that on purpose.

But yes, according to the broadcast, the flags were out pretty much as soon as he hit the escape road, before he'd even come to a stop. I imagine as long as he was parked there, the flags would have stayed out anyway, in case someone else mangled their attempt at the corner and had to bail out down the same escape road.

As for the behaviour of the two drivers... I'm not particularly impressed with either of them at the moment.

90

Name one

91

Care to enumerate some of those "mistakes" by Hamilton, from which he benefitted?

Can't throw out a comment like that, and not expect to be called on it.

92

Bring on Canada

93

Hey...what's your problem bking?

James uses wintery and artic at the head of the article and right away you have Canada on your mind?

I'll have you know we have a summer and we don't live in igloos! Even if every Canadian has to build one in 30 minutes or less as part of the citizenship test.

I swear, if Pirelli Canada choice Supersoft and Soft are Blue and White color codes I'm gonna lose it! Enough with the winter jokes already!

🙂

94

I misspelled Wintry. Eipc Canadian FAIL!

Busted for being absent during wintry conditions! Brrrrr...no thanks.

95

@Sebee, I thought you were an American gracing our fair country? I'm also prepared to guess now as to your name ... Adrian Sebastian Schwarz. Am I right?

I know you said yer first two names pretty much compelled you to be an RBR fan, and then you seem to have a Germanophile streak, hence the last name guess. Though looking at it now (and this was purely by accident, you must believe me), that name makes for some unfortunate initials, haha.

Even though I think your Lewis-is-tough-on-his-car theory is more than a bit suspect, I must give you kudo's for being one of the more interesting posters on this site.

96

Always a great race at Montreal - Mr Tilke, if you read this webiste, the next track you are asked to design that a track like Montreal is not a bad starting point........

97

The best thing about Montreal is that the pitstop "hit" is the lowest of the season, so there's usually a variety of pit strategies.

If Merc split the strategies again, I would want O-P-O for Lewis.

98

Good points KRB, of course the pit-lane length is relatively short at Montreal.

I was going to ask what the probable weather forecast for Montreal is, but it is a bit early to speculate on a potential downpour around the St Lawrence seaway!

Canada 2011 was arguably one of the best races in F1 history...............more of the same please.

99

James, very curious if we could get an analysis on stewards decision regarding Nico's lap.

Half of JA readers seem to say Nico cheated, and the other half say he didn't!

100

I think the stewards decision must be based on the scottish verdict

not proven

101

Half are just wrong.

You and I are no in that half.

102

Bravo Sabee!

There is No need to brew up conspiracies.

Why accuse Rosberg of wrong doing when he is clearly innocent.

BTW, I felt that the Journalists in skysport broadcast behaved like parasites clinging on to an accusation and repeating and telling everyone they met. Only Anthony Davidson and Damon Hill was strong minded enough to see things clearly and rationally. The rest of the crew are just a disgrace.

103

Oh yeah you're both so smart. With the telemetry data, stewards of the Singapore GP 2008 couldn't see Piquet Jr blasted intentionally his Renault into the wall. Using your brains you found it weird at least that Alonso pitted so early in the race, starting from P15. So use your brains. Up to now, FIA don't allocate penalties to fans using theirs.

104

One half are Hamilton fans who simply believe in whatever Lewis says and the other half is sticking to the facts. There were three marshalls on Monaco and one of those was an ex driver.

They got the data from the team and the footage from the car itself and the conclusion was very clear. No fault made by Rosberg.

Maybe Hamilton has a better eye to see on the data what the marshalls can´t. Any way Hamilton was ready to attack Rosberg even before he went out of the car on saturday. He doesnt care about the data, the footage or anything else he went straight his attacking mode.

105

Apparently one of the stewards wanted to penalize Rosberg. I would guess that it was Warwick, the ex-driver.

There was a Brit, a Swiss, and a Mexican on the stewards' panel.

I'd love to see the data that they were looking at.

106

Ho Ho Ho Rambo,

Imagine you're a driver and your closest competitor made sure your lap is destroyed. Wouldn't you at least be suspicious??? Remember he already [mod] in Bahrain. Then there is the heat of the moment and above all, knowing that this would lead to victory the day after since Monaco is merely show on Sunday.

An then there is this:

If the seesawing moves of Nico seemed suspicious to us viewers. How would that be interpreted by professional drivers? I think by seesawing he just wanted to lift of the pressure of one wheel to block that wheel and therefore cause smoke. Just to make it a bit more dramatic. He made a small error the corner before and knew he blew it. (unless....)

Although I honestly don't think he planned this on forehand. He did know the risk was lowered by the fact that I he'd crashed/stopped/etc. there would be no consequences.

I must admit that I'm a big Hamilton fan from the beginning but I also respected Rosberg up until Saturday.

107

Read my comment above for a thought as to why he went ot attack mode. Consider what the option was...to accept the stars were alligned against him. Do you know what that does to a professional athlete?

F1 Gods may not watch Malaysia, but they always clear the schedule for Monaco. And sometimes they intervene, well, because they can. Did they intervene against Lewis? Does Lewis this so? Was it Senna who called for the devine intervention? 🙂

108

...Does Lewis think so?...

109

But do you really think that Merc provided ALL the data possible? Sure the stewards ask for it, but only the team know whether there are bits of data that are crucial yet the stewards may not have asked for it...Furthermore Merc wouldn't have wanted Nico to get a penalty as it would affect the team also in the battle for the championship

110

I think in Scotland it would be not proven!

If he did not create the situation Nico cracked under pressure, either way he benefitted to an extreme extent.

It seems that Rosberg was the first one to use the higher (not approved) engine setting and then Hamilton followed his example in Spain. TW says that it will not be allowed to happen again.

I wonder how Ross Brawn would have dealt with the situation. Certainly he should be immensely proud of what he has put together and not for the first time.

Siddle

PS

with regard to engine settings it shows just how much Mercedes have in hand. Hamilton needs to watch his words otherwise his seat, even with a contract, will be a softer target for other 'names'.

111

We'll look at that and the strategy calls in UBS Race Strategy report tomorrow

112

@James Allen could you please offer your thoughts on what could be the outcome of the season. The number of race wins come Abu dhabi to lewis is far far superior to nico's but nico still stays within the double points margin and for whatever reason lewis suffers a dnf and nico goes on to secure enough points to win the wdc. my question is could we as fans truly recognize nico as a legitimate world champion and would f1 lose all credibility?

113

Good question!

That scenario could happen any season that this double points rule is in place, not just this year.

I still think Hamilton wins the 2014 title - he'll be hard to beat in Canada and Silverstone and Hungary, so I'd expect him to be ahead by the summer break

114

Despite what you have said in the podcast about Hamilton not doing himself any favours in the paddock, there will be a fair number of people that believe Rosberg pulled his little stunt deliberately and has shown his true colours. If anything I think it was an act of desperation by Rosberg that lead him to cheat in Monaco. OK he's got the Monaco win, but I think he's dug a deeper hole for himself now listening to what Button said about Hamilton coming back in blistering form in the next race.

115

It would be nice to know the balance of opinion in the paddock on the controversial incident. Do the majority think it was/wasn't deliberate. Did the stewards clear Rosberg because he did nothing wrong or because it is impossible to know for sure.

116

A key question is why Hamilton instantly concluded Rosberg had [mod], before he had even seen the footage. Did something unusual happen in the team during that qualifying session that the rest of us didn't see? At a circuit where they all try to be the last one across the line when the track is at its peak, was Rosberg keen to get out on track before Hamilton in Q3? This is the kind of thing that might leak out of a team. If so, once Rosberg had beaten Hamilton on the banker lap (which he could have put everything in to), he knew he could take outrageous risks on his final go because if he messed it up there would be yellow flags and he would still have pole. Perhaps when Hamilton went past Rosberg reversing on to the track he though "Ah, that's why he was so keen to get out on track first". Otherwise, his immediate, adamant conclusion that Rosberg had done it on purpose is surprising.

117

James,

Does the telemetry looked at by the stewards include steering angle? In other words, did they take into account Rosberg's apparent yawing of the steering wheel just prior to his untimely off in Q3?

This factor seems to be the most talked about in regards to the did-he-or-didn't-he of Q3gate.

118
Christos Pallis

Hi James, someone else also commented about the "illicit use of engine modes" in reference to Spain. I didn't hear anything about that at the time. Could you shed any light as to what happened? It seems as though Lewis used a mode for more power than his team where allowing him in the closing laps!

119

James, thanks for that. But can you clarify when Toto gave the order? Before or after Bahrain? Did Toto reinforce the order after Nico used in Bahrain and Hamilton ignore it? Is that why Hamilton had to apologize after Barcelona? Or Toto only talk again with the drivers after Barcelona?

Cheers,

120

I think it was after Spain, before Monaco

121

Yes a boost for qualifying, but I expect that the team do not want to use it in the race because in the long term can have a detrimental effect on engines that need to last. In a way all the team management want is a 1-2. They are not bothered which one.

122

James: What's the problem with using some qualifying engine mode in the race to attack/defend a position?

In other words: _Why_ is it illicit?

123

Yes, a mode for qualifying, essentially. Do you notice how Mercedes seem to step up by a few tenths in the key moments of qualifying? Red Bull did the same in the blow diffuser days. It's like a go faster button, in layman's terms

Rosberg used it in Bahrain to attack Hamilton for the lead and Hamilton used it to defend in Spain.

Toto Wolff has spelled out to both of them that this will not happen again in races.

124

Also do you know what data Hamilton keeps referring to (saying it made hi smile and he wished we could see it).

125

Just mind games.

126

There is no way to prove whether the quali incident was faked. However Nico's reaction to the mistake proves his guilt. If Nico had made the same mistake during the race, would he have used the same escape road or would he have still made the turn??

127

If we are going to endlessly analyse the behavior of these two drivers, can we include what happened on track as well?

Like the Q3 locked wheel incident that sealed pole for ROS.

Or Lewis's battle with Ricciardo.

Or his solid second place in difficult circumstances.

Or did ROS really have the speed over HAM, or was his win completely dependent upon his contentious pole?

Let's have some decent analysis of these things, instead of the relentless focus on Lewis's body language.

It's getting ridiculous.

128

Sense in a sea of ridiculousness - well done.

Its over

Onward and upward

129

Are the gloves off now? I should hope that they've been off since the start of the Melbourne weekend. As true competitors, I imagine each would like nothing better than to kick the other's sorry butt into the middle of next month each time they get into the car. As, for me; I can't wait. It's going to be an exciting season. Let's rejoice fellow fans!

130

@Graham Amen to that whatever unfolds its going to be emotional and I will love every minute!

131

I'm loving this. This is how it used to be. The last great season for me was 2007. Two great drivers in one team battling it out and it's getting personal (and obviously great ones prior to that). People complaining Hamilton is being immature need to appreciate you can have it both ways. If you look at any close rivalry inside or outside the team. Fireworks always happen and stories are made.

132

I don't think fireworks and immaturity necessarily have to go together though.

133

Good talk, and what I read between the lines is that team orders suck, should be banned, and should never have been reallowed in the first place, which I found so obvious at the time when professional observers told us "wow Jean Todt is so brilliant".

134

Sorry, I meant you can't have it both ways...i.e drivers be nice to each other and great drama.

135

Hamilton's behaviour out of the car is so frustrating to watch sometimes but equally gripping. I just hope sky don't bring back to 'Is Lewis happy' segment of the show...!

Interesting that ive just read a tweet from an ex Mclaren guy saying that when Lewis left Mclaren, many in the garage were happy as his attitude was a huge downer. He needs to be careful he doesn't do the same at Merc.

136

Well I'm sure Jensens bringing them lots of joy 0:)

137

James I missed the story relating to "illicit use of engine modes" - which race was this?

138

Rosberg in Bahrain to try take Hamilton, Hamilton in Spain to hold off Rosberg.

139

Nico used it in Bahrain in his ultimately failed attempt to pass Lewis. Lewis then graduated and used that same mode in Spain to hold Nico off. Sounds like Nico fired the first shot, and the tension has ramped up from there.

Given that his team lost him about 2.5 seconds in the pits at that race, I think Lewis probably felt entitled to get some of that back.

Canada is going to be fascinating.

140

Actually it probably won't be. Hamilton should be well ahead of Rosberg there as he was in China.

Silverstone will be interesting..

141

Hi James is your comment with reference to driving styles? It would be fascinating if you could do a piece on the comparisons between nico and lewis in that regard...I find it so difficult to see what lines the drivers are taking from the TV...

143

"illicit" is not appropriate when it applies to an internal rule within the Mercedes GP team. Yeah I know it's Mercedes AMG but I prefer Mercedes GP.

144

Apart from anything either of these excellent drivers have said or done so far this season, one thing is clear; the media will not rest until this relationship is falls beyond repair.

With such a big prize available to one of these drivers at the end of the season there is no doubt that tensions will rise. For all the talk this weekend questioning the motives and morality of both these drivers there is no debate about the media's intentions. They want controversy and will shade the truth and purposely misinterpret statements from each driver to try and push that wedge in a little deeper.

Properly tight battle for the championship so far though.

145

I think you are 100% right here.

The bad thing is, they will succeed in destroying so. I have read so many stories of which I thought of Hamilton "you got to be kidding me to say it as blunt like that". But when I saw the actual recorded footage it was nothing like the way it was interpreted and wrote it.

I do understand some stories need a little spice (for example Di Resta's) but for example Hamilton. On Saturday he chose NOT to answer the question if Rosberg did this intentionally. How did the media interpreted this:

1) Hamilton Declares War on Rosberg

2) Hamilton Fumes

3) Hamilton "No More Hugs"

4) Hamilton "Not Friends with Rosberg"

Everybody loves a good story but when the story sets relationships on fire based on deliberate misinterpretations it is unjust.

146

Agreed.

Sky's coverage was pretty horrible post race.

The BBC getting better responses from both drivers.....

But is it what we wanted.

I hoped it would not get to this - but hey.

147

From what I've heard (didn't watch quali live) Sky's coverage post-qualifying was stirring things up a little but their coverage post-race was pretty good I thought.

One thing that hasn't been picked up on any of the news outlets was Lewis's point (post-race) to Natalie Pinkham that at McLaren each side of the garage had their own strategist, and that maybe this is the way forward to the team to ensure the guy who doesn't lead at the end of the first stint doesn't feel hard done by on strategy because the lead driver gets first pick. It's an interesting debate, even though I think Mercedes are trying to handle it the best they can by giving the second-placed driver the option tyres in the final stint (as in Bahrain and Spain).

148

Personally I think in modern F1 this idea that team-mates are best buddies is, what's the word, disingenuous.

I think what has happened is that Lewis has possibly lost respect for Rosberg Junior, in the same way Professor Prost lost respect for Magic Senna after Imola 1989 (see Wikipedia if you don't know the full story). Prost and Senna after Imola met up at Pembrey in Wales where McLaren were doing testing, and the frostiness wasn't resolved there.........

Still, that's a different story.

If a respected journalist such as James says that the relationship between the two Merc F1 has broken down, then I'll take that as a given.

Interesting times ahead........

149

I agree it is impossible for racing mates to be buddies, unless one of them is willing to take the no 2 role

It is very difficult as a fan to know what they said exactly (except for the radio transmissions aired on TV) and what the press "led" them to say, so I am usually cautious on taking stands for or against

I do think HAM is a tad faster than ROS and will be WDC, but it seems he (and his fans) are surprised ROS is so close and do not like it

The only thing that can lose HAM the WDC is himself

I find it hard to believe ROS intentionally messed up Q3, because he has been racing for a long time and had(has) never done anything dirty, in fact, as perceptions go, he comes out as an old style racing gentleman

What puzzles me is why on earth does HAM start a declarations fight against ROS, and now against his own pit staff?

HAM was leading the points, he is the faster driver, he had won every race he finished, and no one can win them all, just keep racing and beating ROS most of the time

ROS is even now trying to avoid a fight, and HAM is acting like ALO in 2007 "I should win every race because I'm the best driver and now my mate, the team, the stewards are conspiring to beat me", which I do not believe is true, but might happen if things get out of hand

HAM is probably the fastest driver of the grid, but sometimes he talks faster than he thinks

150

Agree.

Dare I say it, but isn't this sort of situation somewhat inevitable between two team-mates duking it out for a WDC?

To be honest, I'm trying to remember the last time two team-mates battling exclusively amongst themselves for a WDC didn't have a bit o competitive needle between themselves.........when it's two drivers from two different teams that's a different situation (i.e Sebastian vs Nando 2010 and 2012) but in the same team............I wouldn't want to be the TP at Merc.

Weird isn't it? Merc have a lot of success at this minute, and probably will for the rest of the season, and yet with victory has come aggravation?

There's a message in there somewhere - perhaps do what Ferrari did during the Michael n' Ross years and have a clear No.1 and No.2????

151

PS I 'm going to throw another spanner in the works.........is it possible that an extraordinary general meeting will be called at Brackley?

Thrash things out, so to speak? Mercedes don't want a Prost-Senna situation to poison the atmosphere at their team, so best to sort things out like mature adults?

152

Hamilton ought to just shut up and drive. He's too paranoid and emotional to play mind games. His 'I'm a poor boy from the ghettos of Stevenage' routine massively backfired this week.

Right now Rosberg has the advantage. He's ahead in the championship, he's seriously messed up Hamilton's head this weekend and most importantly he's proved that he doesn't have to beat Hamilton at every race to win the championship.

If Rosberg can turn up the pressure on Hamilton I think we could see a meltdown of massive proportions. What price on Hamilton leaving Merc at the end of the season?

153

If Lewis had pranged the car in an ill advised attempt to pass, or burned off his tyres so much that Daniel had passed him, I'd agree with you.

As it was, he toured around behind Nico, never made any serious attempts to pass once he realised the pitstop tactical pass wasn't on the cards, and was comfortably on Nico's tail until he had eye problems.

Lewis is playing the long game. He knows that he's only a few points back,and can regain the lead at the next race. He leaves Monaco knowing that Nico has yet to beat him in a fair fight this year, and Lewis has some of his best race venues coming up.

As Jenson pointed out, this type of result will only make Lewis come back stronger, and Nico had better be ready for it.

154

@super seven well said I totally agree sometimes I think lewis invites controversy just to keep himself pumped up and ready for the fight. and it also allows other people to think he is having some form of breakdown which also plays into his hands lewis is no fool he knows exactly what he is doing and saying!

155

Agree. What if lewis lost out on the WDC by a point, ie indirectly because of ths race that he thought nico [mod]?

Merc wouldnt like an agree teen in their team for long. There is at least a talented german driver out there and honestly i dont see him not earning as much points as Lewis over a season.

156

I think you are right. At the time it seems Rosberg is handling the pressure from Hamilton quite well. Hamilton however plays mind games but in the process gets emotional and is building the pressure in his own head.

157

Nico has made pressure mistakes in qualifying in Australia, Bahrain (as did Lewis), China and Monaco. He has fluffed 3 starts. If reliability evened out (but it may not since cars get more reliable as the season proceeds), Nico would be way behind Lewis. Australia was likely to be a 32 point swing. If Lewis did not have the DNF, Nico would probably be too deflated by Monaco. Lewis was miffed on Saturday, yet on Sunday he drove superbly, dropping back on occasions to cool his tires/brakes and then pulling back onto Rosberg's tail as crucial moments approached. He was astute enough to recognize the safety car opportunity which the team denied him. Rosberg locked a wheel a few times in the first stint. The safety car helped him as did Lewis getting something in his eye. Nothing that Lewis did on track suggested he was cracking. Everything he said in the heat of the moment suggested that he was upset. Let's wait for another race before we follow your line of thinking

158

In fact, if Lewis doesn't get his emotions together I'm afraid we might see another 2011 season of him.

159

It depends on how you look at it.

Rosbergs act was desperate, man's hitting his breaking points all race week end then in the last session misses. ....

He needed to break Hamilton's momentum and this is how he does it - the stewards surprised me with their call.

These guys don't have to be friends but a straight fight would be nice.

160

What did you expect?

'Cheating' is a word one should use only very carefully when describing Formula One.

Whatever one thinks of Rosberg and the off on the last lap of qualifying, there just wasn't enough there to penalize him; so if he 'cheated', then he's got away with it.

I thought Lewis could attack and win, and thus turn the situation to his advantage.

Even not being able to do that, Lewis is still at 4:1 ratio (finished races), beating Nico.

Nico's weekend was about 'psychological' survival to win at Monaco; and good for him having been able to accomplish it; he drove a solid race.

It is more disturbing the scandalous advantage Mercedes has over everybody else, then the nuances at a hyper-detailed acuity of the one race.

One more thing: the Senna-Prost comparison is a bit rich.

People want to compare to the legends, it is understandable, but let's be very reasonable about it: Lewis is no Senna, and Rosberg has never achieved anything to be comparable to Prost.

What we have is two of the better drivers on the grid, one a proven (one time) world champion, battling almost exclusively one another.

Of course it is going to be tense!

But I don't think we've yet come close to the Vettel-Webber conflict, except that conflict was handled with much less bling and pouting in the media.

Roseberg has to keep on doing everything he can get away with to win.

Lewis just needs to be less domonstrative and keep his focus on racing, and he will probably win in the end, but you never know.

161

I think that's the thing. It's very hard to pin Rosberg down for qualifying. He may well have done it deliberately in the heat of the moment; it may well have been an honest mistake. But if the evidence was so scant for the former, even after data analysis, it would have been a HUGE call by the stewards to delete all his times and send him to the back of the grid (the precedent from 2006 and Schumacher's transgression). Hence they chose not to take further action.

The fascinating thing about the rivalry is that we can see the tension ratcheting up race-by-race and it has reached a height so far here at Monaco, possibly starting the process of putting a wall down one side of the garage. Can fully understand Lewis's frustration on Saturday but from his side it's important that he moves on now; as you say, he's still well ahead on the win count. Nico has wrested back some of the initiative in Monte Carlo, and his challenge is to keep that up - difficult when Lewis is so strong at Montreal.

162

Great comment, thanx.

Sometimes I wonder if the conflict is a PR exercise by the giant marketing firm (which ostensibly sells automobiles).

It doesn't yet have the same visceral emanations of the Vettel-Webber conflict, but much more of the media pouting and flouting bling.

I was suspicious that Hamilton might be a bit unsettled by the glam of leading in the best car and being in Monaco.

That, I admit, didn't happen, but the worst possible outcome of the event (intentional or not), for Lewis would be if it destablizes him.

He should be able to make up the points if he is on his game, but if he is all messed up, the cool cucumber Rosberg will have the upper hand.

It is interesting how Lewis (unnecessarily shooting his mouth off, stupidly) made reference to Nico and his different upbringings, for one differentiator seems to be that Nico has better capability dealing with such stuff.

Lewis, sadly, has regressed into a pseudo-infantile adolescence, and this will not work out well for him.

163
unF1nnished business

Sometimes I just don't know if this whole thing is staged, or if it's actually Lewis' [mod]ego unleashed. The former would make sense as it's a cakewalk season for Merc and we could use the drama. As much as I respect Lewis as one of the top drivers on the grid, he really needs to get a new tattoo that reads, "shut up & drive".

165

James/readers, what do you make of the one strategist Lewis was referring to in the pen. I find it strange that the two drivers going for the championship have the same strategist. Surely that's always going to create a conflict and accusations of partiality one way or another. Don't MB have to clear this up?

166

i too was surprised by the revelation that merc has only one strategist.

lewis should have forced the pitstop. merc would have been forced to service the car like it or not.

maybe we need a rule about drivers bringing quali to a premature end. we were robbed of the quali climax at monaco.

167

Most teams have one strategy guy on pit wall backed up with engineers in the Ops Room at the factory. That's quite normal, even for a team with two drivers contesting the title

168

Although Lewis says that at McLaren each driver had his own. I suppose there could be a conflict of interest. - Depends how you view it.

169

I think a lot of the teams have one master strategist position (Ferrari and Red Bull for instance). Hamilton actually complained about the two strategy system at McLaren when he felt Button was getting better calls than him - he even pointed out that Vettel and Alonso were not having to 'fight' their own teams. Unfortunately if MB have decided that it's only fair to give priority to the lead driver (but still give the second driver a slight fighting chance to catch up and overtake on track) then that's what he's going to have to deal with.

170

I hate to say it but Bob Varsha was right on Twitter when he said Lewis' emotions may cost him the championship. When he talks about going "Senna" on Nico he fundamentally misreads his hero's great rivalry. Senna vs Prost became so toxic because they had little in common - except that Senna knew Prost was the best and he had to beat the best to be the best.

Lewis has known Nico since they were children. Presumably he knows all his strengths and weaknesses, so if he is really the better driver there is no need to fear him. Especially when LH knows and has often stated there is at least one driver who is his equal (Alonso), albeit in a car off the pace.

Unless LH thinks that Mercedes wants Nico to win because he's German and/or would be a second generation champion. In which case he's thinking like Prost, not Senna.

171

Maybe the real issue is that media can't handle all this tension - it's just too much for them !!!!!

But HAM is used to journalists who freak out every time he frowns.

Frankly HAM drove an exceptional race without error (behind a flawless race by ROS), in rather hostile circumstances, both psychologically and on track.

And that's F1.

I do agree HAM has to keep it all together, but I see no evidence that this is not the case.

172

Lewis is faster than Nico. That's all that will matter as long as he doesn't screw it up by letting the emotions or persecution complex get to him.

173
James Clayton

I'm pretty sure that talk about emulating Senna was just to try and make Nico nervous into the first corner so that, if Hamilton made a sterling start or Nico a bad one, Nico might be worried about what Hamilton's plans would be.

As it happens Nico got the better start so it was all moot. Hamilton tends to get a better second phase of the start, but there's no time in Monoco to enjoy the advantages of that.

174

Depends what he meant by that comment. If he meant that he was going to let his superior driving skills do the talking, then fair enough.

175

See Kimi is still stating he's not comfortable with the car.

At what point will he have to accept that Alonso is just faster?

Also I noticed Ferrari referring to Alonso as 'El Maestro'. Can't help but think Enzo Ferrari would be turning in his grave seeing the team have to boot lick a driver like that to encourage them to stay.

176

Very nice piece of reporting. Thank you.

James you have written a piece earlier in the season applauding Lewis's maturity in handling the relationship with Nico. With the recent comments he made in this race, has he gone back to his old self ? Where did the "maturity" go ?

177

if that really was a mistake that nico made in quali,then he actually made yet another mistake under pressure,luckily it paid off.usually it doesnt tho.i think lewis drove a sensible race.some ppl thought he'd try a stupid move,but he didnt.shame about the first safety car,as lewis was closing in quickly.i expect lewis to bounce back in canada.he has 3 wins there.

178

Hamilton bluntly stated: “We are not friends. We are colleagues.”

--------------------------------------------------

Hmm... I don't know.

This whole war of words between Lewis and Rosberg comes across as WWE to me for all we know, Lewis + Rosberg + the Mercedes marketing people are having a good laugh for the added interest this gives the season.

I mean, come on, these are people that have been mates their entire racing lives and so everything can't get tossed to the bin over a couple of weekends especially over issues that occur on track.

I think why Lewis was overly disappointed this weekend was because of his love for the Monaco race but once he wins again, this weekend will be forgotten >>> as for Rosberg, he will be back to being good mates once Lewis wins the season.

Meanwhile, I was wondering, maybe Lewis and Vettel have an secret contract with FOM to give their radio messages extra coverage.

For sure we do not get as much coverage from other drivers.

179

I'm getting a bit tired of radio messages these days to be honest, they used to be there to show real-time ways that the race was developing, now they just seem to be used whenever a driver says something "controversial".

180

You nailed it. It is manufactured hype in an otherwise dead boring season where 2 friends win every GP in the fastest F1 car of all time. There HAS to be a rivalry, however fake, to sell interest to the customers / i mean the fans

181

In these days of modern advertising practices and viral marketing, product placement etc, it's always better to be talked about than not talked about...

182

I'm actually surprise how easy it is to crack Lewis. Alonso must be kicking himself right now.. LOL. He should have applied these mind tricks back in 2007.

About the radio msgs. I also wonder why only Lewis and Vettel gets more coverage. My rational guess is that all driver signs a privacy agreement and Vettel and Lewis happens to tick the box to allow broadcast of radio msg without their consent.

183
James Clayton

Hamilton said right at the beginning of the season that they are not friends.

Just because they came up through the junior formula and got along well, the media have painted them out as best buddies - which they clearly have never been. Still "best friends fall out" makes for much better reading than "these guys who used to get along really well now don't get along quite so well", doesn't it?

184

@ James Clayton

Agreed. As always controversy sells newspapers.

185

Good point on the radio transmission. Clearly whoever releases the transmissions is doing some clever selection. How come there was hardly anything from ROS?

186

Lewis appears to have issues with every team mate he has in F1, he is one of those drivers that if he is not number one and winning all the time, he cannot handle it.

Prove yourself on the track and no in the paddock on the microphones, Nico appears to be able to do it.

187

He didn't seem to have any issues with Button. And he wasn't the number 1 driver at that time.

The guy won 4 of 5 races he took part of and is feeling the pressure?

Give me a break!

188

Hey Edvaldo, He did have problems with Button. He publicly commented that Button unfollowed him on Twitter and that he thought they were friends. Then later when he learned Button had never followed him on Twitter in the first place he publicly apologised since he had to. Talk about petty. This is the guy who this year said he's not friends with Nico while saying he had visited Nico's home when young many times and rode on Keke's private jet. This is the guy who refused to testify for his noted good friend Sutil in court, resulting in his friend Sutil calling him a coward. This is the guy who Mclaren noted was the first to disobey the team and block Alonso, their first issue, which led to Alonso returning the favour and staying in the pits. Just some facts...

189

You should know by now that Hamilton supporters don't acknowledge facts if they paint their boy in a poor light.

190

Which race has Nico proved that he can beat Lewis without having an unfair advantage this year?

Whether deliberate our not, any independent analyst will tell you that pole position translates into race victories more times at Monaco than any other race on the Formula One calendar.

Once the pole was obtained, all Nico had to do was hold him off at the pitstop to guarantee the win, and the safety car took care of that. In every equal fight this year, Lewis has beaten Nico, and Monaco won't change Lewis' mind on this.

191

Looks just like politicians, at each others throats in public and then it's all down the pub for a drink. In this case, however it looks like a genuine feud. Lewis probably should try to contain himself as it doesn't appear to be going down too well with the public, but I can understand why he is p'eed of as he obviously feels the team did not necessarily give him the best strategy they could, they clearly need a strategist for each driver now that they have two closely competing drivers. If they don't address this it will all end in tears.

192

"it doesn’t appear to be going down too well with the public"

It's not Big Brother, it's F1.

193

Did Rosberg engineer the error to cause the yellow flags? Of course he did, and that the private view from most people in the pit lane though they would never come out and say so in public and very impossible to prove.

For Merc, the drivers feud is a win-win situation for them; their car is blitzing the opposition on the track and everyone is talking about their drivers off the track generating interest in an otherwise very predictable season.

PR heaven for Mercedes!

194

Maybe Mr BE took NL & TW aside and asked them to provide some kind of excitement to the F1 show where there was likely to be stagnant, uninteresting same-same Merc 1-2 scenario all season long? Oh, I do love a good conspiracy theory! 😉

195

Interesting, before Rosberg's victory at Monaco, this happened;

Prost has revealed he had a chat with

Rosberg following the recent Spanish

Grand Prix.

'I talked to him on Sunday night, and there are a few things he can do,' revealed Prost.

'First of all he understands he needs to be on pole and start the race first.

'There were at least two races where he was a little bit quicker than Lewis, but you know how difficult it is with the same car, with no mistakes. It's tough.

'Right now it's very tight, and it's going to be very tight. But just because Lewis has won four times consecutively, that doesn't mean things cannot change.

'The thing with Lewis is he is using 100 per cent of his potential, and Nico understands he needs to do something a bit different.

At least he knows he needs to change a few things, but we are only talking by a couple per cent. Nothing more.'

196

James,

A lot of people have compared this to Senna and Prost but would you not say this is a lot more like Hamilton and Alonso in 2007? Lots of paranoia and it seems Lewis is intentionally trying to create tension with Nico to gain an edge, it may net him the title but it may also mean one driver has to leave at the end of the year too if it brings the team to breaking point (I suspect it would be Lewis who would leave) ironically enough I think Alonso senses this too and that's why he has put the feelers out to Merc in case this happens.

I don't think either Merc driver came out of this weekend in a good light, Nico on the track and Lewis with his words off it.

197

It won't bring to a breaking point because it is all fake.

198

It is not a fake. Trust me, I'm sitting there front row, looking at these guys. Hamilton was furious.

199

Yes James I am sure he was.

But reportage is more suited to an episode of Big Brother or Eastenders than a fierce sporting contest on the world stage.

The stupid part of it is that HAM is treated differently in the media than other drivers, many of whom also exhibit "negative" emotions, both on and off track.

The idea of a classy driver vs a non-classy driver is being introduced, but it's nonsense and double standards.

Think of other drivers, most notably (but not only) Senna, one of the most emotionally demonstrative and aggressive drivers in the history of the sport.

Yet even though he was far from a perfect human being, the media have absolutely idolised Senna.

No surprise then that HAM and other drivers might take a leaf out of Senna's, Shumacher's or even Alonso's book and seek to emulate them.

200

I don't agree with your third para.

He is different from the others (as they all are from each other) and so is treated as he is.

Some media exaggerate, of course, but you tar everyone with the same brush which isn't reasonable, as far as I can see

201

Haha. That'd be genius if Bernie, the FIA and Mercedes had got together to try and solve the engine sound and boring races issue this year. I'm not sure this is the cosmetic changes we were expecting! Or it's just a great fun rivalry for us all to enjoy born out of two reasonably well matched drivers wanting to seize their opportunity.

202

No, it is different from 2007

It's becoming more like Webber and Vettel around Turkey 2010

It's a breakdown of trust

203

Its becoming a mental battle and i think hamilton has the edge on raw speed but rosberg might just have the mental edge as hamilton bemoaned the pit call for about 3 laps after it and going too be interesting if the team develops the car in a way too favour one of them. James do you think ferrari and red bull can catch up too fight for wins or do you see the mercs fighting too the end between themselves?

204

Remember, the radio feed we get is an edited version and about 2 laps behind.

205

The Red Bulls and Ferrari's are weeks behind Merc

If Merc keeps developing at the same rate, they will not be caught

After Canada, if Ferrari isn't a big step closer with the large upgrade package they will have there, they will focus more wind tunnel resource at 2015, I reckon

206

How about RBR? When will they turn their attention to 2015?

207

I don't understand the vilification of Hamilton, post race. He feels he was wronged and acted accordingly. He believes that after seeing the data, he is convinced that Nico cheated. Why would you congratulate someone you are sure cheated against you? It doesn't make sense.

He decided to follow his true emotions with regards to Nico rather than be a hypocrite, smiling in the podium while clearly knowing in his mind that he has disdain for his rival because he [mod] his way to victory. It's a true show of character and I would have done the same thing.

Nico has beaten Lewis many times before, most recently in 2013 and Lewis never acted this way because he knew he was beaten fair and square. In Monaco, after seeing the data, he believes that his teammate [Mod] Fair reaction.

[mod]

I'd rather see drivers with personalities rather than drivers with public relations sensibilities. Reminds me of the good old days. F1 just got more interesting thanks to Lewis and Nico.

208

Would have more respect if instead of hiding behind sunglasses and monosyllabic answers, he'd looked the interviewers in the eye and said that Nico had [mod]..

209

The stewards make the decision on the data not another driver.

210

It's perfectly possible to do a fake run off, and get the OK from the stewards because nothing is visible to contravene the regulations. Only the naive can believe Rosberg had any other intent than to stop Hamilton putting in his pole lap. As for the relationship it's unmendable because Rosberg cheated and he sure ain't going to own up and admit it is he. Very poor sportsmanship in my view.

211

I'll be honest and admit that I'm no fan of Lewis Hamilton and find his his podium conduct and utterances all weekend were, at best unprofessional, at worst disgraceful. Though Nico's celebration of pole position was not in great taste, I do not believe he purposely caused the situation. A true champion both wins well and loses well. Nico sure leads Lewis here - let's hope find finds those extra 10ths and prevails.

212
Darrell Steele

Going into the next few races if Lewis keeps his head that is, I think nico will find it hard to beat Lewis if everything goes accordingly that is, Montreal is somewhere Lewis has been strong if he doesn't crash, and his home race coming up nico will have his hands full, I must be honest I enjoy the battle between them I can't stand this PR get along nonsense it's a championship these guys have feelings and it refreshing to see what they actually feel and think, be it right or wrong what the public may think.

213

Rather than being consumed with rage by the thought of "et tu Nico", Lewis would be mindful to remember that the fualt is not in our stars, but in ourselves that we are no masters of the universe. He should be gracious enough to accept that he was squarely outpaced by Nico throughout the race weekend, and consider himeself fortunate that his exagerrated petulence did not cost him second place to the exemplary Daniel. Nothing less than an abject abject apology to all, not least Prince Albert, will do to rectify his unsportmanlike behaviour during the presentation ceremony and post race interviews.

214

I feel sorry for Lewis ........... a couple of years ago his driving could barely shake off Massa, now it seems he can't shake off Nico.

World sportsman he may be, top drawer F1 driver? Not yet, and not by a long way.

215

He shook off Alonso pretty well, by your reckoning he's not a top drawer F1 driver either, correct?

216

I don't think he needs your pity.

Good objective analysis. Weird how people who run F1 don't see how talentless Hamilton is but you see right through. You're special.

217

Hopefully lewis will calm down when he realises that pitting early would maybe put his 2nd place under threat, and definitely if he had to stack up behind rosberg immediately after seeing the crash

The safety car was deployed 35 seconds into the next lap, so lewis would exit the pit and have to slow to a delta time while Rosberg, Kimi and others would have gone through that sector of the track normally because the safety car hadnt been deployed yet

218

Good point.

219

I think lewis Hamilton needs to stop blaming everyone else every time things don't go his way. Look at the history. Tension between Hamilton and Alonso at Ferrari. Tension between Hamilton and button at McLaren and now with rosberg. But of course never Hamiltons fault

220

Always the victim, never to blame. You are quite right there.

221

Hamilton at Ferrari?

Confusion cloudeth thine mind.

222

I think the only tension, the only psychological warfare thats going on, is Nico and Lewis both frantically trying to figure out how to conquer and tame the wild speculation, and the eternal exagerations by the motoring press on their perceived feud. Sure, they might not be happy with eachother, but boy does James Allen & pals blow this up.

223

Maybe if you were there and saw the whole thing with your own eyes, with people you've known their whole careers, you'd see it differently

But it is so much easier to sit in a remote location and sound off isn't it?

224

My bigger concern is that these doubts exist and are happening more often.

F1 has lost my trust. I don't always believe what I see is real any more. Did he make a mistake or didn't he? Did he use this setting or that setting? Is he really angry or playing to the camera? compounded with the technological gimmicks, petty politics and rule manipulation F1 has become a spectacle rather than a sport to me.

I don't watch nowadays, I have much more fun reading all the comments

225

Hi James,

I don't think there is an insult in his comment but you have to agree to some extend that the media in general is exaggerating the psychological warfare between the two to have a great story to read.

By this I'm not refering to JamesAllenonf1.com but just look at the gptoday website and filter on Hamilton or Rosberg.

226

As you are close to it, James, what's your view on Risberg's mental strength. Hamilton was clearly like a caged tiger baying for blood, the innocent wronged. Do you think this will trouble Rosberg at all?

227

No. But he knows he's trying to hold back a tidal wave

If he'd lost Monaco to HAM he would also lose Montreal and that would be 6 on the bounce- Austria who knows and then Silverstone will favour Hamilton

That's why Monaco was so important for Rosberg

228

Of course, they have been starved of a story this year and this fits the bill

But I disagree that this is being fed by the media. Hamilton could have taken a PR approach at the weekend and deliberately chose not to, rather to put the story out there. You can't blame the media for reacting, even if as always many of them over react.

But like I said - if you were there and you knew these drivers for many years you would probably see it as I have.

229

Aye. It is, and they do.

230

Ouch! Touche James lol. But I'm sure JackTorrance wants to be there... We all do, but aren't quite lucky enough. Just take his opinion as an opinion...

231

James, it is not worth answering all comments from armchair experts. Not all the information is available to tv broadcasters and it is a bit like court reporting - You have to be there for the whole court proceedings or you can only make judgements based on the limited space given to the print journalist. Three column inches cannot cover seven hours in the court.

Same with the issue at Monaco.

232

Don't want to judge Nico's actions, but I am glad he turned out to be someone able to kick a certain world champion's ass rather than becoming one more whiner. "Competitive animals know no limits". Surprised at how bad Lewis handled the situation - could have shown himself morally superior, did the opposite.

233

Lewis Hamilton is coming off like a self-centered fool. He brought up the questioning of Nico's hunger, effectively saying that Nico comes from luxury and so isn't as hungry. Later he clarified by saying that he used to travel on Keke's private jet with Nico and visit Nico's home when young. He basically said they were childhood friends and that he idolised Keke to a degree. Does that mean days later you can question the integrity of someone, deny they are friends, and not congratulate him let alone look his way when he won a race? Nico has congratulated him every time. It all seems very spiteful for someone who apparently was treated as a friend before. The fact that Hamilton deliberately cheated on Spain and had to apologize privately makes it all the more damning.

I guess being a millionaire and living your dream can't buy a class act nowadays. And I understand British fans are starved for true winners in F1 (and several other sports they love) but that shouldn't mean blindly ignoring petulance. I think if this is mature Lewis Hamilton what was he doing in 2007? We already know he started the Alonso war there by cheating on an agreement initially. The way Hamilton has been talking to his team not just this race but the one before, he sounds more like an angry child. I've seen many primarily British fans point the finger and toss the overused "toys out the pram" line they love on Alonso and Vettel but I've never heard Alonso nitpick and insult his team like that on the radio... and this is while having the fastest car by a country mile.

My appreciation for Nico has increased, we saw how last time he was asked to not overtake his team mate by Ross Brawn and he listened, he didn't moan about it. This time beside Hamilton's incessant jabs at the press conference he never waivered from being loyal to PR and Mercedes. At least he's shown a level of restraint and maturity. That's my rant for the day.

234

Alonso never moans and nitpicks - hilarious. What did he call the team during Monza quali' last season ? Idiots, I believe was the word he used to describe them. I expect LDM public rebuke for Alonsos critisim of the team didn't really happen and it was really LDM praising him.

Rosberg certainly did moan about being asked to hold station by Ross. He couldn't actually make the overtake stick and after Hamilton had retaken the lead Ross came on the radio and told them to hold position and Rosberg was moaning he was so much faster and at the end of the race he told the team to remember this.

Unfortunately, posters like you only see, hear and remember what fits your argument. Perhaps if you wrote the truth you would get more support from other posters .

235

Good rant.

I can understand both sides of the argument, but unfortunately, when you construct a such well-put comment on an English language forum, it is going to fall on mostly deaf ears due to favoritism and patriotism...

There probably are some logical and rational readers out there, who understand, but due to being grossly outnumbered, you won't see many +1`s.

236

Aw 🙂 well put gubnah'. I completely concur with your analysis of the situation. Few and far between and indeed outnumbered. It's good to know a fellow logical fan is around though.

237

Both didn't cover themselves in glory this weekend. But because of it we get to see 2 team mates (being allowed to race) and get under each others skin.

Nico could of been more gracious on the Saturday after the mistake. He should of also had the decency to just park the car and wait for the session to be over. He's an intelligent guy and would of been aware of the situation he had caused.

If Lewis thought it was wrong then he should of been the bigger man. Looked him in eye shook his hand on Sunday then vowed to himself to crush him on the race track for the rest of the season. While not having to say a word or be evasive.

Thank goodness Mercedes let their guys race! The management have been good dealing with the topic so far this season. I'm sure they knew a situation like this would arise and they still allow it.

Could of been one flat season at the top if these two were controlled more by the team. Bravo Mercedes! Roll on Montreal!

238

I think Rosberg should of dedicated his Monaco pole to Schumacher, as it was a Schumacher esq lap to seize pole 😉

239
David Murdoch

+1!

240

#Schumacher #pole70

241

Got to love all the drama!

No matter who is right or wrong the fall out makes for far more interesting viewing.

Who would want to see them being nice to each other at every race?

242

I don't want them being nice, but causing a yellow flag intentionally to prevent his rival from clinching the pole is unfair, I don't want anyone to win like that. Gearing up his engine settings against the advice of the team is fine with me, it's F1 driver trying to get to the finish line as quick as possible, trying to take as much drivers' points as possible (the only championship that counts), and, last but not least, taking risk of a subsequent engine failure.

243

Mark Hughes' report is quite damning.

http://www.motorsportmagazine.com/f1/reports/2014-monaco-gp-report/

"So did he do it on purpose? The front-on shot was the most damning for him. It showed him sawing away at the wheel as if correcting a squirming rear end under braking – except the rear wasn’t squirming at all but simply following his lead on the steering."

There needs to be more uproar about this kind of cheating...ruined qualifying for a lot of drivers. Rosberg's celebrations and claims of a "special" win equally illustrates that Nico has a skewed moral compass. Mercedes appears to be defending him to avoid a PR fiasco, as though it will prevent people from buying BMWs and Audis. Not may people in the F1 fraternity courageous enough to put their neck on the line and express their real feelings. Someone who does is criticized for being petulant. Sigh!

244

Alain Prost used a similar approach against Ayrton Senna, Didier Pironi against Gilles Villeneuve: once they had arrived at the realisation that the guy in the other championship-contending car on the other side of the garage could drive it faster, they had to find some other way to compete with them.

Ouch.

Don't for a second believe that Merc don't know the real story. So yeah, they'll protect him in public, but I can't see how that bolsters his case within the team. Surely Merc don't want questions as to the worthiness of their eventual DWC champion to be the story of this season.

Could turn out to be a tactical win, strategic loss for Rosberg.

245

I think you'll find there's been quite a decent uproar 🙂

246

I believe Rosberg had a choice,he made a quick decision to go of the track rather than have Hamilton get a better lap time,then chose to reverse to make doubly sure it would spoil Hamilton's lap.

247

"except the rear wasn’t squirming at all but simply following his lead on the steering.” I'm glad I'm not the only one who saw it !

248

Samir: Interesting read that by Mark Hughes and I largely agree with what he says. There's no doubt in my mind Rosberg [mod] and he should be brought to book over it. I wonder if the FIA actually have the power to do that retrospectively after the race?

249

Very interesting read, thinks for that.

Seems Lewis is far from alone in thinking that things were not as innocent as seemed.

I thought Nico was beyond things like that but since learning that he started this mistrust in Bahrain with the use of a engine mode neither was supposed to use my opinion is changing.

Apparently its 50/50 in the paddock as to whether he meant it or not.

Given all that its not surprising that Lewis is suspicious.

250

I actually used to quite like Nico and knew he was a good driver when he didn't have the car to demonstrate it, but after this he's gone down in my opinion. As regards Lewis I have a great regard for his sporting integrity. That business with the stewards when he was with McLaren can be discounted as he was lead into it by his sporting director towing the "company" line. Lewis now needs to put this all behind him, keep his head down, and keep notching up the wins in spite of his team mates cheating.

251
Mike from Colombia

I feel that Mark Hughes, Johnny Herbert and Anthony Davidson have the highest level of integrity out there.

252

Lewis will trounce nico and all ths will blow over.

253
unF1nnished business

Will it though? I have little doubt who the better driver is at Mercedes, but when it comes to attitude and teamwork, it's hard to be a fan of his sometimes.

254

If Nico wins in Canada that will be like an overhand right from Riddick.

Remember, with the kibosh placed on "overtake" mode for defending, Lewis may not have it all his way. Neither will Nico.

Finally, these two took the gloves off. Now off with the helmets gentlemen, and let's dance!

255

Thing is, will nico even see lewis rear wing in montreal, silverstone and budapest? Ham is massively quick at these circuits. To be fair, we know wat happened in aus, its old news now tho. And wrt monaco, conspiracy theories apart, more thn likely lewis wouldve been on pole and in all likelihood wouldve won th race... Apart frm lewis' misfortune, when has rosberg really went out and done somethin great since monaco last year?

256
Mike from Colombia

Nico only inherits wins when greater driver's suffer misfortune or underperform.

The guy has yet to win a race proper IMO.

257

Fighting talk!

258

As it stands, its 4-1 in lewis' favour ( we can't really count aus)

259

Well, I guess we never gonna have closure on th monaco qualy topic but they did go head to head in the race... Other thn this he's only taken th race win from hamilton at monaco last year. Britain too, as in the case of aus this year, he inherited the win... With that being said, bring on canada!

260

You can't count monaco either because in my view he was prevented from completing his final qualifying run by a "mistake" from Rosberg.

261

Hi James, could you confirm that Nico was the first to use an additional engine mode in Bahrain. Is this true or was it Lewis in Barcalona? Thanks!

262

You know, the thing is this...

Nico was actually using overtake to try and...overtake.

Isn't word that Lewis used it to defend?

That was a Mercedes engine going poof in Monaco. These boys better lay off the boost.

Honestly, why do they even have this mode? Can't MB disable it? Who are they going to be passing this year? So if only each other, they can do it on even terms with no overtaking mode.

Crazy glue the button Toto!

263

It's a qualifying-only engine mode. As Coulthard has said, it's like putting candy in front of a kid, and expecting them not to open it when you're not looking.

264

Yes. Rightly or wrongly the rule the team made was you weren't supposed to use the overtake mode to defend your position.

Nico was using the overtake mode to try and overtake which was allowed, Lewis used it to defend which was against team orders - hence Lewis had to apologise and Nico didn't.

This is being spun by the Hamilton camp as "Nico used an engine map Lewis wasn't allowed to" implyng that Nico did something wrong first when Nico was actually obeying team rules.

Seems a silly rule to me, but its Mercedes car and its their rule...

265

It's not an overtake mode, it's a qualifying mode meant for limited use. Extended use could be detrimental to the engine which must last five races. That all said driver will use it if push comes to shove so what they need to do is disable it for the race, but I suspect they won't do that because there may come a situation where they may allow it even in the race but for limited duration.

266

Wrong!!

Its a qualifying mode that neither are supposed to use during a race.

Why would you ever give a driver a mode that he could only use to overtake and not defend.

Think about it man.

It makes Lewis defense in Bahrain even more impressive.

Nico had more engine power and still couldn't pass Lewis.

267

Nico wasn't supposed to use it either.

268

Who said it was an overtake mode?

It was an engine mode that neither was supposed to use.

Nico decided to ignore the instruction and use it.

Nice to see how you castigate Lewis if you deem him to be at fault and make excuses for Nico.

Mind you we all know how you are smarting over Vettels problems so only to be expected.

269

reports suggest rosberg invented the used of that engine mode technique and hamilton imitated him.

270

I think Wolff said it was Nico, then Lewis.

271

Hamilton and Alonso got over their differences, so Nico and Hamilton will eventually get over their differences at a stage. If any of them is happy to finish second in a possible championship winning car, then it would be better for that driver to sign up with Caterham or Marussia.

At least the situation confirms that they are actually racing each other and will continue doing so.

272

Put Lewis and Alonso in the same team and see how they got over their differences!

Distance and seperation got them over it. You think Spanish blooded dude forgets how he lost a WDC thanks to you?

Have you ever seen Lewis and Alonso hug it out? 🙂

273

Lewis and Alonso on the same team. Duel of the divas...

274

Alonso and Hamilton got over it, that's the truth. So Nico and Hamilton will surely get over it one way or the other. Senna and Prost got over theirs, Niki and Prost got over it too. I am sure that they will get over it with time separated or in the same team, who cares. They are racing each other and have not crashed into each other (yet) that's what matters. So all is good.

At least we have something to talk about while we wait the next round. If this incidence haven't happen @Sebee, nobody would have seen you in this forum as you would have be home alone nursing the trashing Ricciardo gave to your Vettel.

275

Absolutely.

If Mercedes had a clear No.1 driver policy this season would be the dullest since 2004.

Merc's decision to let its drivers race is as good for the sport as it is for Bernie's coffers. Canada can't come soon enough!

276

Yes, the situation at McLaren was resolved when the non-British driver left the British Team.

The situation at M-B will be resolved likewise.

277

AMG Mercedes F1 is a German-Anglo team. They will fight it out and will resolve the matter whenever they feel like. I am not in a hurry to see them being friends again.

278

I suspect Lewis will be back with a vengeance at Montreal. It's pretty close between this and Hungary as to which is his strongest track, as he really is in a league of his own at these two places.

This will not result in some major calamity on the track. Mercedes will not let it get to that point. Mercedes they are taking the right approach with these two, which is to essentially put the little children in a corner for time out. They've removed their capability to change their engine settings- which is one of very few options that drivers have to try to gain a performance advantage at certain times in the race. That really is the equivalent to taking a belt to their backsides. And I am sure that Niki Lauda will have plenty of tough words for them.

They will be fighting each other like hell and will hate each other, but they won't wreck.

279

I think Hamilton doesn't understand his position and behaves as if he doesn't believe he is stronger and capable of winning it.

Why the guy can't understand that he needs his team to support him at a decisive moment? This kind of behavior can force Wolff and Lauda to support Rosberg.

Merc is very dominant and they can win the title with either driver, so it is up to them to decide and Hamilton is not helping himself.

I think what he should do it this:

1. Accept the fact that things cannot always go his way and just be stronger, be more mature

2. He is not 100% certain that Nico did it on purpose - why offend the guy? Stewards analyzed the case and found Nico not guilty - end of story. Hamilton should accept it

3. He should come after the race, congratulate to Rosberg and thank his team that he's got this great opportunity to fight for the win

4. He should come to Wolff and Lauda humble and say that sadly it did not go his way this weekend and he could have taken P1 if not for the yellow flag, but it wasn't mean to be. But next time, he will do his absolute best and hopes that team will support him

Humility is the most important thing, Lewis and it doesn't mean you are weak...actually it shows you are extremely strong when you are humble. You can be humble and relentless at the same time.

Hamilton should not make Wolff or Lauda angry because they might decide to give the title to Nico. He should know it and remember it.

280

Agree 100% drive the car and win the WDC Lewis forget all of this Senna nonsense .

281

Really????

Was Schumacher humble or Alonso,

The only person to crack this weekend was Nico when he locked up, luckily for him it worked out.

I don't particularly like Lewis when he gets one of his massive sulks on, but....

Hamilton still drove a faultless race, Rosberg was locking up before the safety car came to his rescue to prevent any possibility of under or over cut.

All the top drivers throw there rattles out of the pram when things don't go the way they want.

Lewis has already won a WDC under terrific pressure it would have been so easy to drop the car in desperation in those final corners in 2008....he didn't.....much to a lot of peoples annoyance.

We are talking about someone who has taken on Alonso and come out on top.

A race where Lewis doesn't win and suddenly he has a mental weakness?

Grasping at straws more like.

282

100% greed AlexD.

Which is why I think this whole Monaco episode, when you sum it up, exposed a huge weakness in Lewis. We could actually say, that when a perfectly executed circumstance comes up, Lewis shows to not have the necessary mental toughness. I thought Nico carried himself much better through the whole situation.

In fact, as this is just a Marketing effort, it may be an issue of who represents the brand better at this point. And while there are stains on Lewis' record, I'm not sure that's the case about Nico.

However, Mercedes surely recognizes that to the English speaking world and to China perhaps Lewis connects more?

I just don't know. All I know is that however he did it, Nico is the "better son" this week. But thing is, it's not like the "W" was ever at risk.

What really will swing the team in support of one driver is if there is suddenly an outside threat to the 1-2s, and one finishes P1 while the other P3. Then things will turn.

Could that be Canada if Renault have "Da Power"?

283

I am surprised that Hamilton is not smarter. He is always speaking too emotionally - he is racing his heart out??? As if Nico or Alonso or Hulkenberg are chilling out. Niso was racing his heart out every bit as was Hamilton. All I see is super ego of Hamilton.

He is not wise. He wants to win every battle and this way he can lose the war. He should target to win the war and sometimes it is OK to lose a battle, just like in Monaco. Accept it, get stronger, move on - no need to create tension and more work for the team that gave you a chance to fight for the championship. Make their life easier and they will reward you for this. Be wiser.

284

Canada's long straights will ensure nothing gets close to the Merc.

Lewis has recently been named the most marketable driver on the grid, from a purely financial perspective Mercedes would be better off throwing their weight behind him but from what we know about this team's ethics that will simply not happen.

I predict an open fight throughout the rest of the season with Rosberg pipping Lewis due to another DNF or some other circumstance maybe at Abu Double, Lewis - like Alonso is another great racer who just doesn't have the luck in F1, Australia was an omen.

285

If only ... whatever the rights and wrongs Lewis has allowed himself to be out psyched - or maybe out psyched himself -

either way not great. Did he learn nothing from Button?

286

How can the guy be so freaking certain that he would have taken the pole position, is the other guy a bunny or what? Rosberg did beat him fair and square on their first run in Q3. And Rosbergs S1 time was marginally quicker than Hamilton's S1 time on 2nd run.

Hamilton without any evidence indicating Rosberg cheated is again extremely immoral as raising doubts about someones integrity is very serious when you don't have any evidence. Had the stewards found Rosberg guilty, then it'd have all made sense. Sorry Lewis I respect you as a racer but your actions this weekend were questionable.

287

i agree with you. if someone accused me of something so heinous without any evidence

it'd be nose-punching time.

288

This is probably one of the best posts I have read on the internet regarding this feud. I am a Hamilton supporter but I gritted my teeth at his various outbursts and inability to play the consummate professional this weekend. On the other hand it is nothing but entertainment for us the viewer in an era of PR speak and no emotion, just painful to see Lewis give his many, many detractors more material after such an epic run of wins.

I must say he is due some luck but rarely gets it... Rosberg has already had the Aus DNF, the Bahrain safety car and the Monaco Q1 so far..!

289

Don't forget the contact with Bottas at the start in China. Quite incredible that there was no damage.

The only bad luck I see is his lost telemetry in China, though in the end it didn't impact his result (he was never gonna catch HAM in CHN having started 4th).

Nico's currently on a 15-race points streak, the longest current streak out there by some ways (ALO on 9), and the joint-8th longest points streak of all time.

290

I have to agree with the strategy (although I am quite a bit older than either driver, and a fairly dispassionate observer).

About point 2 though: the stewards only ruled that they didn't see any evidence that the rules had been broken. Lewis apparently looked at the traces too, and came to a different conclusion. Obviously, he's hardly impartial, but is probably also very familiar with Nico's traces, and much better placed to decide if anything is strange about them.

It would be pretty difficult to be sanguine in that position.

291
James Clayton

"the stewards only ruled that they didn’t see any evidence that the rules had been broken."

'any evidence' would not be enough. They would have to be able to prove 'beyond reasonable doubt' to be able to impose a penalty. That would have been *very* difficult.

292

If you live with someone in the same apartment building,known him for years and been in the same team twice together,yet intentionally leave him out of your wedding invitations,you sending out a clear message.

. We can say well,it's personal and choose to invite whom l like,there was something wrong right there,and l think,that sealed the end of their friendship.

293

Yeah, that was odd. Can't be friends in that case. Acquaintances at best.

294

In addition when Eddie Jordan was doing the podium interviews in Spain, Nico had another little dig saying " Eddie is my number one favourite neighbour in Monaco."...........when he has Lewis living just a few doors away.

295

has hamilton had a wedding?

296

Alas, Lewis did not learn from his similar brushes in the past with Massa. The stakes were not so high then, but Massa discovered that LH is real easy to upset and get in a state. This gave Massa a useful weapon which he used repeatedly.

Guess what Rosberg is going to do? Yep. More of the same.

Unless Lewis can learn to stay cool.

297

Massa didn't get into Lewis' head, he just drove into him race after race. Admittedly Lewis shouldn't have been putting himself in those situations.

298

Lewis's behaviour is getting increasingly tiresome. Stop with the petty little mind games and have the "fair" fight that you talk about.

Now we hear he used the boost in Barcelona which Lauda has said is wrong. Is Lewis big enough to come out and publicly admit it and say he made a mistake? Whether one believes Nico deliberately locked up and drove into the run off area, he was big enough to say he made a mistake.

What does Lewis do? Rant on the radio about pit strategy and afterwards says "I honestly do not remember". Rant about solving things "the Senna way" and next day say "I don't honestly remember".

Is that a sign of a mature sportsman?

299

How about Rosberg using that exact same forbidden setting in Bahrain?

And from the reports that circulated that story, most stated that Lewis apologised but that Rosberg didn't! The fact is you or I don't know so why be a gossip monger? Personally I assume that after the heat of battle, both probably do communicate behind the scenes.

Monaco this year was certainly not a fair fight - the fact is that Rosberg benefited from his mistake and enjoyed an easy win due to the nature of the circuit.

Lewis was top in FP1, 2nd to Alonso in FP2, fastest in FP3 and in Q2 so where this rubbish about Rosberg having the edge all weekend came from I do not know.

I agree that Lewis's outburst on strategy was unprofessional however your post reeks of bias.

300

Nico is always positive and Lewis is always negative, he thinks everyone is against him. In Spain he went against team orders by turning his engine up and now he has the cheek to say Nico went off on purpose. He didn't or he would of been punished.

I just can't like the guy, every time he says something its a question with intention of blame. He went as far as bringing NICO's upbringing into it?? Its not like he was lucky enough that his old man bought him equipment and transported him to races etc. He is acting like a spoilt little brat all the time.

301

This is so manipulated & fake I can't even believe it. It has all the chemistry of 8 year olds pretending to be Prost & Senna.

It just smacks of Mercedes knowing they are pencilled in to win EVERY SINGLE RACE this year and be firm favourites for the next few years as well the way the rules are, knowing that it will be impossible to sell interest in 2 buddies sharing wins & hugs after every domination so they'll manufacture a rivalry instead. Yes I think the entire thing down to the qualifying incident could have been a setup. Certainly the reaction to it is one.

So after being at the front of F1 for 7 years with no personality whatsoever, Lewis is gonna start being all 'Senna' like cos he was the moody, cool one. To me Lewis is just acting like a total donkey & losing respect in fivefolds by behaving like this.

Here is the thing - you can't fake this. Senna v Prost was organic, it was natural that they were fierce rivals. Schumacher v Hill & Villeneuve & Hakkinen was based on the natural result of his dubious moves against those drivers. This is 2 old school buddies pretending that one is Senna & one is Prost. It's pretty lame, in my onion.

302

Red Bull/Renault had their chance but messed up. The Red Bull car is as good as ever, just that Daniel is better than Seb at driving it.

The engines will be better next year, but perhaps so will Mercedes and so it goes on.

303

Based on what? How about the fact that Vettel inherited Webber's bad luck? And how about Vettel being moved over for their new wonder child in the races?

304

When I say the Red Bull car, I mean the chassis as it's the engine that lets the package down. I don't think this car particularly suits Vettel's style, but Ricciardo has taken to it like a duck to water. It does have to be said that Vettel has had more than his fair share of reliability problems. I don't think luck can be inherited as its more to do with the intrinsic nature of the car.

305

Didn't know onions could be lame I learn something new everyday.

But you're right the whole thing is lame, the Formula Mercedes championship is lame and so is Toto Wolff pretending he is so important reaping the rewards of Brawn's hard work in recent years and all the money Mercedes has spent, the whole thing is a farce.

306

What dubious move did Schumacher against Hakkinen?

307

Almost killing him Spa 2000

308

AAAH, that dreadful episode. Although I think you confused Hakkinen with Coulthard there.

309

yes, it certainly is lame.

310

I honestly can't decide if I believe Nico or not about the "mistake" but once he was cleared by the stewards of any wrongdoing that was the end of it really.

What Lewis should have done then is accepted that decision instead of going off in a sulk. Instead, he has done damage to his own image when really all he needed to do was sit back and let the doubts over Nico's mistake get all the media coverage.

Whether it was a 'mistake' or intentional, Nico has successfully used the circumstances to wind up Lewis and undermine him with both the team and the media. Where were Lewis's PR advisors when all this was going on!

311

Let them at it i say! Makes it more interesting for the rest of the season.

Hamilton will be too strong for Nico in Canada but its usually a mad race so you never know. Its Malaysia last year all over. Nothing quite like some inter team squabbling.

312

"I always remember with Lewis that when we had a tussle in a race, or there was an issue between us or with the team, he would have a really bad race and be quite outspoken and quite emotional about it," Button says on Reuters. "And the next race he would destroy me, he would come there and be stronger than ever."

This just proves the point I raised in earlier thread.

313

Well the stage is set then, Montreal is the place where his destroying of Rosberg should happen, not only does it go with your theory but also at his best track, time to blow Nico away by lapping him and the entire field.

Can you imagine what would happen if Nico somehow manages to put up a fight during the race? I wonder who would implode.