F1 World Champion 2014
Lewis Hamilton
Frustrated Hamilton says Mercedes must “do better” after new qualifying setback
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Lewis Hamilton's Mercedes on fire
Posted By: James Allen  |  26 Jul 2014   |  2:55 pm GMT  |  291 comments

Lewis Hamilton sent a strongly worded message to his team after dropping out of qualifying in the first session once again with a reliability problem.

The Briton said that this run of setbacks is “beyond bad luck” and called on the team to raise its game, as his championship hopes took another knock.

Hamilton, who trails team mate Nico Rosberg by 14 points in the drivers’ standings, had been fastest in free practice and most were backing him for pole position on one of his favourite tracks, where he has won four times before.

But the Mercedes caught fire spectacularly at the start of Q1 after a fuel leak. Hamilton will probably need a new engine and extensive other repairs and is likely to start from the pit lane, while his team mate Nico Rosberg starts from pole position for the sixth time this season and the fifth time in the last six races.

Whereas Hamilton was able to come through the field from 20th relatively easily in Germany, Budapest is a different challenge. Last year there were only 23 overtakes in total during the race, of which 14 were DRS assisted. The possibility of rain complicates that picture further.

XPB.cc

“We’ll have to replace the engine and gearbox,” said Hamilton, speaking to the BBC minutes after climbing from his car.

“There’s a lot going through my mind, but I just have to try to turn it into positives until tomorrow.

“I think it’s getting to the point beyond bad luck – it’s something else. We just need to do better.”

It is the sixth race in a row where Hamilton has not got the maximum qualifying result – Monaco he was unable to complete the lap due to Rosberg going off, Austria and Canada he made a mistake, Silverstone he qualified sixth, Germany he had a brake disc failure.

Reliability issues are mounting up for Mercedes, even though they are in complete control of both championships – in addition to Hamilton’s two recent qualifying issues, Rosberg had a gearbox failure in Silverstone, both drivers had ERS and brake problems in Canada.

Lewis Hamilton after dropping out of qualifying in Hungary

“I honestly don’t know what I can do tomorrow,” Hamilton added. “This is a track where you can’t really overtake.

“I think I will struggle to get into.. the top five. I’ll probably leave here more than 20 points behind Nico. There’s still races to go but I don’t know what else to say.”

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291 Comments
  1. Gaz Boy says:

    Very rare to see a big fire in modern day F1 racing – well until recently!
    It’s very fortunate that there hasn’t been a Kentucky Fried Lewis today…………..a fuel leak that envelops the car is the stuff of hydrocarbon fire nightmares (petrol burns at around 700C)……
    Putting flippancy to one side, Lewis is spot on – Mercedes must get their Quality Control (QC) in check pretty damm quick (PDQ) otherwise this WDC will be tarnished.
    I don’t believe in bad luck in motor sport – just bad preparation. And for Lewis, AUS, CAN, and now qualifying in GER and HUN have certainly been bad preparation.
    I think finger trouble is the euphemism used in motor sport circles for sloppy discipline and preparation, is it not…………………….

    1. Thompson says:

      Have to agree….

      Two races in a row during free practice car is fine only for a catostrafic failure to occur BEFORE race day.

      You could’nt write this stuff.

    2. jean-luc says:

      Whatever you opinion, it is not fair on Lewis to be let down this much by his own team, equipment or whatever.

      1. Gudien says:

        It’s not fair to the Mercedes team when Lewis refuses to pull over and let the track marshals do their job but instead drives back to the pit entrance with a fire thereby ensuring more damage to the car! Hamilton’s lame excuse “the car wouldn’t stop” is simply not true.

        Point being once again Lewis bears some responsibility for the extent of the damage.

        On a second point I doubt the team will be impressed by his words which suggest sabotage. Is this really the driver/employee Mercedes want to retain over the coming years on an international stage?

      2. aezy_doc says:

        How do you know the car wouldn’t come to a stop? Were you in the car? He doesn’t suggest sabotage but procedural problems. He did say ‘ we’ must do better, not ‘ they’.

      3. JDanek007 says:

        “It’s not fair to the Mercedes team when Lewis refuses to pull over and let the track marshals do their job but instead drives back to the pit entrance with a fire thereby ensuring more damage to the car! Hamilton’s lame excuse “the car wouldn’t stop” is simply not true.”

        wtf guedin? WHAT is your EVIDENCE that Hamilton lied and actually could stop the car but chose not to?

        Absent any evidence, your defamatory comment should never have been published.

      4. kieran says:

        @Guidien
        Oh yeah, car is on fire and Lewis just decides to have a little chill out session before exiting his car……idiot. Would YOU have sat in the car with the knowledge of it going up in flames? I think not.

    3. Quade says:

      At this rate, all that’s left is to catch someone pouring a bag of white powder down Lewis fuel tank.
      An eagle eye has to be kept out for what is going on at Mercedes, because its now gone well beyond chance. There are two cars in the team, but the “incident” rate is far from 50-50.

      1. Steve S says:

        There were two cars at Mercedes last season, yet the problems were not distributed 50-50 between them. Rosberg bore the brunt of them. You see the same almost every year in almost every team. At Red Bull the luck has been even more unbalanced to one driver over the other than it is at Mercedes.

        What you say is “well beyond chance” is completely normal. .

      2. aezy_doc says:

        Completely agree Steve S.

      3. kieran says:

        @Steve S.
        You would have thought that a car that has been worked on longer than any other car on the grid, would have next to no reliability issues, would you not? Oh and last year, Rosberg only had a couple of extra problems on his car, so no he did not take the ‘brunt’. Hamilton actually lost more points last year than Rosberg. (due to car issues outside of his control). This year is looking more and more like the 1989 season between Prost and Senna – to which Prost only won that WDC due to Senna DNF’ing every other race weekend. (through no fault of his own)

    4. harv says:

      Don’t know about it being tarnished, however one potential positive outcome could be that if he is within 14 points of Rosberg at the final race and wins it (assuming he still has the greater number of DNFs through no fault of his own), then there might not be the huge uproar about the double points final race than there otherwise would have been.

      1. r says:

        This comment has me worried about the double points madness. I hope that doublepoints remains a stupid idea and contrived regardless of whether Hamilton prevails or not.
        Somehow I feel Formula 1 may have it right if they are trying to attract kids.

      2. RacingFanatic says:

        Oh dear lord PLEASEEEEEEEEE F1 people can we get rid of the double points system? It is just so unbelievably stupid. I simply cannot believe a sport like F1- a sport typically followed by people of a higher age and people that like to think/strategise and things like this, compared to those like football etc.. is resorting to this kind of “showbiz” attention grabbing rubbish. If the DP system is still in place next year and the people at the top haven’t listened to the overwhelming majority (I have not yet met a single person who think double points is good) then there is something seriously seriously wrong with this sport, the fact that it is still in place for this year is a disgrace in itself. 99% (that’s not even an exaggeration) of fans don’t want double points.

      3. Wassa says:

        The championship has already been tarnished in my view since Monaco. This is the only high profile organization that I know of where the chief executive is being sued for bribery, yet he is allowed to continue calling the shots. F1 need to clean its acts, no safety car in Germany, Piquet, Alonso Singapoore affair, will just reinforce this sense that there are just too many vested interests in f1, and that deals are being done behind the scene. If I was Lewis I’ll call it a day and move to the States. At least Americans are progressive in the sense that your ethnic origin is no longer a reason in stopping you showcasing your talent. F1is too political to be called a sport. Bottom line, Rosberg will win a hollow championship.

      4. kieran says:

        @Wassa
        You wrote my thoughts exactly. If Hamilton doesn’t win this year (going by the fact that Rosberg has been driving inferior to Hamilton regardless of points) I think he should quit F1. F1 as a whole would lose ALOT of viewers, money and sponsorships. They should be grateful that someone with Hamiltons marketing influence, is still in this sport.(he is essentially the Tiger Woods of F1) Which makes me think – no wonder why Mr E is pushing to add as many circuits on the calander as possible. People are switching off since 2009 because they are realising that its extremely political, fake and manufactured. Last true season was indeed 2008.

    5. littleredkelpie says:

      I seem to remember a side-pod fire at Spa last year? Battery to blame I think. could easily be wrong.

    6. Ahmed Sydney says:

      Not all doom and gloom!
      This was qualifying and not the race, even on this track Mercedes have such a superior car advantage with quali, race pace and good tyre wear, that they can easily come through the field with a good strategy.
      Forecast of rain + possibility of reliability issues for Rosberg (remember Silverstone anyone???) and anything can happen!!

      To all conspiracy theorists, remember these facts:
      1)Rosberg had even more mechanical failures in 2013, with more race DNF’s why is that not overanalysed?
      2)Vettel has had more mechanical failures and race DNF’s in 2014
      3)Raikonnen had more mechanical failures in 2005, in a car that would have easily made him WDC over Alonso.
      4)Schuey had more mechanical failures in 2012 compared to Rosberg, despite beating Rosberg in races where they both finished.

      To all Lewis fans, get over it. This is racing and it has always happened and always will. He has one of the fastest F1 cars in history (relative pace adv over competition) & has the ability to win every race for the rest of the year.

      1. I’m not so sure that the conspiracy theorists are wrong.Think about it……Germany wins the world cup,The German economy is in the driving seat of the EU and Mercedes would love to have good looking all German boy win the world driving championship.
        Lewis in my opinion is the best driver pound for pound,but he does not quite fit into this teutonic golden equation.It did not matter that Nico had reliability problems last season,because Mercedes where not going to win anyway,but this season is a very different matter!!!

    7. Alec Tronix says:

      Yes.. It’s not Bad Luck, I think it could be Complacency within the team, knowing they’ve got the WCC in the bag.

    8. Bobby says:

      The question for Paddy Lowe and Jock Clear is what human intervention took place with the car between FP3 and Q1? Fuel pipes do not disconnect by themselves, it must have been human error. The CCTV should prove what happened and how the mistake was overlooked and why the QC failed ……….

  2. Stefano says:

    Please Hamilton, hold your fire.
    If they did not mean for the car to erupt in flames, dont kick the team.
    This is the best time to show loyalty and trust, because you need them to show you the same.

    So easy to shoot first then think…

    1. Paige says:

      I don’t see anything wrong with what Lewis said. It echoes what Nico said. He’s not kicking the team, he is just saying that the situation is a problem and needs to be fixed. It’s not acceptable to have a car that is by far the fastest on the grid but has a reliability problem in half of the grand prix weekends that keeps them from scoring maximum points.

    2. VV says:

      What do you expect him to say? “I don’t mind actually, I’d much rather fight my way past 21 other cars to the front. I’m especially looking forward to being in the same area as Maldonado.”

      Considering Hamilton’s run of luck recently, his comments are quite mild. I doubt very much whether Mercedes are favouring Rosberg – it’s just the way things are in F1 sometimes. Webber always had reliability problems at Red Bull before this year and Vettel has had much more than Ricciardo this year. Massa has had a lot of bad luck on first laps, whereas Bottas has had none.

      1. Brian Bell says:

        Massa hasn’t had bad luck. He has driven like that for years. He can’t seem to accept that ending his race by turning into another car doesn’t get him any points

    3. StarScream says:

      Hamilton has all the right to complain, first Austrlia where his engine failed. Then Canada with brakes, then Austria when again get slower pitstops and was losing power, then Germany and now here..

    4. jean-luc says:

      Yes, they have to raise their game. This is the fourth let down and the second in a row, and the first time he is pointing his fingers at the team, rigthfully.

      1. Brian Bell says:

        I thought he did well not to kick the s**t out of the car and beat it to death with his crash helmet. ….I thought his comments were quire reserved….I suspect that Mr Brawn could iron this continuing QC failure out fairly quickly. Paddy Lowe is good, but he has never really had a reputation for reliability on the QC front

    5. Stephen says:

      The way he looked back at his car when he was walking away was very reminiscent of Singapore when he looked back at his stricken McLaren which helped him make the decision to leave.

      1. StarScream says:

        This. I had the same thought, but i bet McLaren-Honda gonna do everything to get him back!.

      2. I know says:

        It is a very different situation. McLaren was not competitive, Mercedes is. Despite Hamilton’s sometimes apparently emotional reactions, it was a very rational decision to go to Mercedes, and it would be most irrational to leave now.

    6. Lohani says:

      Very true. Schumacher in 2012 had even more reliability issues, yet he didn’t complain. Interestingly, it’s the same side of the garage that Hamilton has inherited. Schumacher = 7 times world champion. Hamilton = 1 time world champion by 1 point, beating Massa.

      I wonder what the verdict will be if, at the end, Lewis wins through double points in the last race. Will double points in the last race be a good idea then? Will justice have been served?

      Vettel is having a bad run of luck also. It is sad to see Hamilton having reliability issues. Let’s hope he can manage 2nd in the race.

      1. Michael says:

        @ Lohani I doubt very much Hamilton will even crack the top 5. This isn’t Hockenheim. I really wish people would stop bringing up Hamilton’s WDC year. 2007 was a long time ago. U can’t change history. All the Hamilton haters need to get over it. What’s done is done!

      2. Dave says:

        Yet when he crashes out of quali or a race it ok?
        He is a world champ by default thanks to Timo Glock being instructed to let him pass. There are many other drivers more worthy of that car. He needs to grow up and accept some responsibility himself. Mercedes should fire him for his comments.

      3. Lohani says:

        Hello Michael. I’m not a Hamilton [mod]. I’m a big Schumi fan. Hamilton replaced Schumacher at Merc. I’m simply pointing out that Schumi never publicly questioned his team, whether it was with Merc, Ferrari or Benetton. Nor did he start mind games, ending up falling in the same hole Lewis dug up for Nico (2 qualifying errors). Schumi even went over to his mechanics post Japan 2006 and personally thanked everyone and asked them not to worry about the error. He could have very easily been a 8 times WDC had Japan and Brazil gone without problems:

        Some of us who are not Hamilton fans (nor do we hate him) can simply see who had “real” class between the present Merc driver and one who is recuperating from a deadly accident as we speak. The world is not out to get Lewis. Mika Hakkinen had major reliability issues in 2000. In one race, his engine blew with just a few corners to go before victory. As for the championship, the guy who is claimed to be “the best ever”, “the quickest ever” and “the best overtaker ever” hasn’t quite, err, lived up to the hype. Of course, Lewis is not to blame for this. The media and fans get excited sometimes, which is understandable.

      4. kieran says:

        Ummm…why would he complain? He was the highest paid driver on the grid at the time, Mercedes were not a front running car (and so was not fighting for the WDC and WCC( and he was well past his prime. That being said he was VERY quick in 2012. (when the car was working).

    7. LB says:

      Well, the BBC quotes him as saying “WE must do better”… where’s the harm in that?

    8. David in Sydney says:

      These things happen.

      If HAM is getting all brooding on this, just like WEB did, then he’s forgotten that he’s extremely fortunate and gifted to have a millionaire jet set lifestyle and celebrity to match.

      It’s the sport. Live with it or get out and make bad rap records.

      I daresay HAM will get the better of ROS (we’re only half way through the season for heaven’s sake) at some stage and take the WC.

      He’s great driver. And a pillock. Spoilt little brat.

      1. JDanek007 says:

        Fortunate to have the lifestyle he has?

        Hardly.

        He was FORTUNATE to be born into the family he was born into, and have a dad who backed his career from boyhood, plus a good stepmom and loyal sibling (I’m not familiar w/ LH’s relationship w/ his bio mother).

        He’s EARNED the right to live like a king through MASSIVE sporting success obtained via incredibly hard work to maximize his own potential and ensure the loyalty and support of his teams and sponsors and fans.

      2. kieran says:

        Hamtilon has won in EVERY catagory he has raced in, therefore he earns this right. End of story.

  3. Michael says:

    Of course they should. It’s starting to get very fishy that all these problems are occurring on his car.

    1. Jock Ulah says:

      Roll on – ‘conspiracy theories’ . . .
      Blogosphere set alight . . . just like the car.

      1. Gaspar Tanke says:

        Maybe Rosberg has more finesse?

      2. StarScream says:

        Yet you can’t debunk it don’t you ?….

    2. Phil says:

      Yes, you’d definitely want Rosberg’s team of engineers if you could choose, wouldn’t you?

      1. Sebee says:

        I wouldn’t give them up if I was Nico!

      2. Brent says:

        I think Rosberg has had the same race engineer since he started in F1. The car prep on Rosberg side of the garage may actually be a little better. Not much you can do about a brake disc failure, but a fuel fire sounds like something overlooked..

      3. kieran says:

        Yep I certainly would want Rosberg’s crew. Hamilton’s crew overlooking a spark plug problem in AUS was very…..embarrassing

    3. Formula Zero says:

      It’s frustrating as a fan & surely more frustrating as a driver when reliability affects the championship so much. It is deadly & detrimental to Lewis’s championship bid. However, Lewis is throwing too much conspiracy theory around lately. He mustn’t forget that he won his only wdc due to Ferrari’s reliability, mistakes in the pit lane, Singapore Grand Prix crash saga etc. Also I am sure there are other fast & championship material drivers around who would love to take his seat if he finds everything too fishy. Nobody will stop him from leaving the team next season. There are at least 6 drivers on the grid now that can win wdc with that car. So, showing frustration with reservation & decent manner is also a sign of true champion. Lewis seems to get it wrong every time!!!!

      1. Torchwood Five says:

        You can temper frustrations when things look fair, and it is all very well saying that 6 drivers could win in this car. As it is now? Covered in fire extinguisher foam?

        Conditions sometimes mysteriously work out when a driver moves on.

        Like someone mentions down the screen, how many reliability issues have McLaren suffered since Lewis lost 90 points (counted by the owner of this blog) through “unreliability” in 2012?

        How many wheels have dropped off speeding Williams since Maldonado moved on? I know posters put the blame on Pastor for burning bridges with the team, but having that happen to you two races in a row must be a BIT disconcerting.

      2. Quade says:

        People make silly demands off Lewis. I don’t think there are many people in the World that would be able to remain calm in his situation.

      3. roberto marquez says:

        I would like to see you talking after having been seated on a car in flames. Mercedes ( Toto Wolf ?) do not want Lewis winning the champinship and they should be gratefull to Hamilton in helping develop this car ,I do not remember Nico doing anything impressive last year ,before Hamilton came . To me Vettel and Rosberg are two birds of the same flock,able to shine if they have the best car but middle field otherwise, not like Hamilton,Alonso and Ricciardo who have shown they can win no matter what..

      4. Brian Bell says:

        So who are the six drivers that can win WDC when the car keeps failing?

      5. Formula Zero says:

        Look guys, I am not a Lewis fan. But I do acknowledged his frustration & it does feel unfair for any driver to have so much reliability issues. But my point is that F1 has always been somewhat unfair to lot of drivers, always! Schumacher’s engine blow up in 2006 (1st Ferrari engine failure in 5 years), Massa losing the wdc in 2008 (Glock lost 20 seconds in the last lap for Hamilton to take the wdc, plus numerous pit stop blunder by Ferrari), Alonso not winning in 2010 etc. It goes back decades. Sometimes drivers do have valid point. For example, Webber being treated like number 2 in RBR. But not in Lewis’s case. Merc is good enough car to win both championship even with Chilton on board. But they chose Lewis & the team is almost 100% more English than German apart from the brand name. Merc could’ve told Lewis to let Nico pass in Bahrain as he was the faster driver. If anything it’s unfair to Nico to just cop all the complaints from some one eyed British fans & Lewis. Nico did superb last year as well, beat Lewis in many occasions fair & square. My top 6 drivers to win wdc in that Merc are Alonso, Ricciardo, Vettel, Bottas, Bianchi & Hulkenberg. Sometimes Lewis just need to accept the fact that it’s racing & be grateful to have a fast car to fight for the wdc after the RBR domination for 4 years. He could still win the wdc, because he has the talent & the fastest car. But if he doesn’t, then he should just be ready for next year. I don’t see anybody else making up 1.5 seconds per lap next year either. Be thankful for the opportunity & be frustrated with modesty at the same time. If he is worried about favouratism so much, I’m sure McLaren will love to replace Jenson next year. He is surely free to leave.

      6. erik says:

        +1… and to win the championship by 1 point over Massa does not add weight to championship either. I remember Hamilton almost chocked back then and only Clock gave championship back to him what few corners earlier Vettel took from him. But win is a win and now we call him a champion, so, a remark ” gone beyond bad luck ” puts the weight to Mercedes who gave him a car to drive from the back of the grid to podium without a safety car help. Attitude is just not right for a guy who wants to be a champ. There are 21 other guys wanting the same but i don`t hear them to whine about their unfairness that much. If Hamilton wins the championship it is only down to the car allowing him to do so. That`s it. Not wise versa.

      7. kieran says:

        [mod] Lewis won his WDC in the second fastest car, that should be obvious to people. And as for brazil, does every have amnesia, or were you all drunk when watching it and forgot? IF Glock had PITTED he would have been behind Hamilton anyway, so the team took a gamble to stay out and it didn’t work. The Brazilian track in the wet is VERY difficult to drive on due to the huge contour difference and steepness of each corner, let alone being on slicks (which incidentally everyone seems to forget too).

      8. James Allen says:

        And the rain started falling harder at that point…I was there

    4. FormulaEDiary (Anil Parmar) says:

      At least his problems are happening in qualifying. Nico had his gearbox problem in the race at Silverstone and it cost him big time.

      Long season left though..

      1. Super Seven says:

        Given the difficulty of passing at the Hungaroring, this is going to cost Lewis big time.
        Yet another time that his team has messed him up.
        If his car had been as reliable at Nico’s he’d be leading this championship by a country mile.

      2. aveli says:

        if you forgot, hamilton has had 2 dnfs so far.

      3. RichyS says:

        Yeah, lucky Lewis has had no reliability issues in races. Oh no, wait…

    5. dean stewart says:

      Yet again we hear this theory, I can imagine the look of utter uproar on your face if someone was to suggest that Nicos’ problem at Silverstone seemed rather convenient for Lewis to win in England, in a car built by mostly English mechanics.

      However, I would never even begin to suggest such a thing. This is the cutting-edge of the technology allowed in the current regulations, and it’s not hard to fathom that there will be some failures given how the technology is still in its infancy.

      1. Dont Trust F1 says:

        The Mechanics are not mostly English sorry to burst your bubble! Its very international mix of guys.

  4. nusratolla says:

    Baring a mechanical failure or an unfortunate clash in the opening laps… Podium for Hamilton looks rather definite, such is the pace of Mercedes this season. So, his engine fire is just a storm in the teacup that’s all.

    And must admit, Kimi’s fortunes seems magnetized by Hamilton, for whatever happens to Hamilton, Kimi follows it up, for when Hamilton wins, Kimi comes second and when Hamilton gets out in Q1 then so does Kimi… One due to mechanical failure and one to absurdity on the team’s part.

    Wow, now that is some serious brother in arms fortunes here…. Go Hamilton… Go Kimi

    1. Stefano says:

      Hamilton and Kimi are the best on this track

      Please check results for last few years.

      Also they have opposite drive styles but they are similar in talents and maybe the fastest of all the drivers of many years. They are unlucky.

      1. jean-luc says:

        What do you mean “They are”? Hamilton is unlucky, provided what is going on is bad luck. Rosberg is having a relative easy ride.

      2. Dave says:

        You have to be kidding.

    2. Sami says:

      I do completely agree, they have been so bloody unlucky this year. However, just look at Seb’s fate he suddenly has turned up to remind all of us hoy incredibly fast he can be.
      I very much hope they will hold on, and remember that last year it was Nico’s car which caught fire by the end of the race and that Ferrari’s wall horrors are just a never ending story.
      The very best to the three of them !

    3. aveli says:

      the track characteristics doesn’t favour overtaking and hamilton says it’s unlikely for him to end up on the podium.

  5. Tom says:

    Nice, I wonder if Mercedes sent him a strong worded letter after his mistakes in Austria and Silverstone!

    1. StarScream says:

      Did Hamilton not became sencond and first ?. And had the team give faster pitstop Hamilton could have won in Austria aswell

    2. Torchwood Five says:

      Silverstone “mistake” was after Lewis team radio’d him on the last lap in Qualifying Three, to say “If you do not think you can improve, let Rosberg by.”

      I know FOM are in charge of radio broadcasts, but have we ever heard a team tell their driver that during qualifying?

      1. Alboreto 27 says:

        It´s because it don´t hapent very often that a driver try to block a teammate set a Quali lap.They will talk about that behind closed door´s with Lewis about that like they did to Niko in Monaco.The different´s in Monaco it sealed a one two. in Austria they would end 5 and 6.Lewis is racing for Lewis. Niko is racing for Mercedes and that resuld in a different motivation for all Team members. Lewis has the highest natural speed that is clear but there is missing something .

    3. aveli says:

      why would they have sent him such a letter?

  6. jag says:

    all i can say is that In the name of “we let our drivers race each other” yet they conspire to favor one. it just unfortunate for Lewis to bear these failures…

    1. glennb says:

      Last season Nico retired 3 times from reliabilty issues. Lewis had none.
      I dont recall any uproar back then.
      Lewis finished the season 18 points ahead of Nico.
      Interestingly, double points in the final race would have brought them within 2 points(?) of each other, despite the lopsided reliability stat.

  7. Thompson says:

    Wow, just wow….

    There really is very little you can say – no conspiracy theories but………..

    Can’t help imagining a moustacheiod mechanic with leather open backed gloves moving around his garage unnoticed.

    1. VV says:

      Nigel Mansell?

      1. Andy says:

        Dick Dastardly.

      2. Brian Bell says:

        VV….You owe me a new keyboard….I just drenched the existing one in beer…. ROTFLMAO

  8. Ken ord says:

    German team they obviously want a German driver to win championship and if they can get a Merc. One two all the better.

      1. matt says:

        its obvious.i actually thought theyd wait until the next race before more reliabilty issues for lewis.f1 politics,will lead to a hollow wdc win for nico.first problem in australia,then the brake failure(still unexplained)and now this (again unexplained).lewis has lost around 16 seconds overall in the pits this season,and he has has bad reliabilty,especially when it looks like he can catch nico in the championship.they have to pay lewis regardless of whether he wins the wdc,so nico winning doesnt change that.Jacques Villeneuve recently said “Lewis Hamilton will not be at Mercedes for long. Everyone in the German team wants a German to be world champion. Lewis was only brought in to make Nico [Rosberg] even better.”

      2. Brent says:

        I think it is obvious if you want a German champion you don’t hire the quick Brit or the cagey Spaniard. It’s got to be tough getting a brake disc to explode at the right time (and wrecking a car) and burning one of your multi million dollar cars to the ground to ensure the superstar you hired loses. I see the costs so far: $20 million for Hamilton, a couple wrecked cars and the embarrassment of Mercedes unreliability to ensure a German wins the world championship.

      3. Steve S says:

        “Everyone in the German team wants a German to be world champion”

        Most of the people working at the “German team” are not even German, they’re British. Your remarks don’t say much about how the world works but they say a lot about how your mind works.

      4. Damonw says:

        @brent

        The team didn’t know they’d have a car this dominant! They can basically choose which driver wins the title with the speed they have.

        Who knows the reason why, maybe it’s a perfect way to lower Hamilton’s wages. Why pay him big bucks if he can’t beat Rosberg.

        It’s either sabotage or gross incompetence, either way someone needs firing!

    1. Mike A says:

      Just don’t get these guys that think Merc do this deliberately. You can just visualise Paddy & Toto saying “When is it suppose to light?”

      1. littleredkelpie says:

        Hahahaha … that’s funny, Mike A. lol.

        And in one sentence you should have silenced every one on here who has proffered such ludicrous theories of dastardly deeds – at least those with the intelligence and humour to rethink.

    2. VV says:

      A German team, based in England, where most of the staff members are British?

      Yeah, sure they do.

      Do you have any views on 9/11 or Barack Obama’s birth certificate you’d like to share? Or the moon landing?

      1. sarcosuchus says:

        so what if the majority of the serfs at the factory are brits? Its the german OWNERS that get the Lions share and would benefit the most from a German WDC.

    3. FormulaEDiary (Anil Parmar) says:

      They are paying Lewis a fortune just to be there; they would never endanger him like that.

      Also, at least Lewis is having failures in qualifying and not the race, unlike Nico from Silverstone.

      1. Robb says:

        “Also, at least Lewis is having failures in qualifying and not the race, unlike Nico from Silverstone.”

        Really? Australia and Canada ring any bells?

      2. RichyS says:

        Did you just start watching F1 from the British GP onwards? That, or you have a spectacularly short memory.

      3. JB64 says:

        Anil, since you’ve peddled this line at least twice on this thread, perhaps you should review Australia and Canada – I think your memory is being a bit selective.

      4. George says:

        Maybe youve forgotten Ausi and Canada?

    4. Salvo Sparacio says:

      It’s still a machine and you have to take care of it. Last Race Rosberg paced himself after building a gap. Lewis is more on it all the time like his hero Senna. If Lewis is winning he keeps on it 100 percent. These motors, electronics and brakes generate to much heat and it will definitely take a toll on the equipment. Lewis is probably the best late braker in the field and Rosberg is very early on the gas which helps Rosberg with being easier on the brakes and regeneration. Two diffrent driving styles with almost the same speed but one is better on the equipment. Still a machine at the end of the day.

      1. balazs says:

        I do not know weather Rosberg is better on the equipment or not, but the DNF statistics of their 1,5 seasons together at Mercedest does not show anything like that. In 2013, Rosberg had three car failiures (Australia, China, Hungary) and Hamilton had zero, this year it is 1-4 to Hamilton (or 2-4, depending on how we calculate with Montreal). So it is 4-4 or 5-4 to Rosberg. Good and bad luck is balanced in the long run…

        The numbers above also make me believe that Mercedes is not sabotaging Hamilton.

      2. rossco says:

        So why is Hamilton so much better on fuel than rosberg if he is harder on the equipment. In every fair fight this year between them Lewis has won. 6 times hamiltons lap has been compromised. Shame.

    5. aveli says:

      it’s not a german team. it just bears a german name. where are the engines made? where is the chassis built? where are the people who build the engines and chassis come from? none of the executive lowe, wolf and lauder are not german.

    6. Sidecar says:

      German? Who? The one that’s based in brackley with an engine from Brixton and 70% English staff???? It was brawn above the door a few years ago. Merc pay the bills. The team is most defo British. Wise yourself up.

    7. grat says:

      Yes, but what Mercedes doesn’t need is the image of their car being consumed by flames being on every sports / news site around the globe.

      That sort of thing doesn’t help their reputation.

      1. Andrew says:

        The Ferrari’s are by far the most reliable cars in the field and have been for years.

        Italian build quality far better than the Germans or the French!

        Just lacking a bit of speed.

  9. Paige says:

    This is just a very difficult period of luck for Lewis. Every driver has it in their careers, and often more than one. But he is keeping the right attitude and is just simply getting down to work. It’s all he can do, really, and after all, he himself has made mistakes this year, so there is no reason to slag off the team. He’ll go into the race tomorrow, fight as hard as he did in Austria, Silverstone, and Hockenheim.

    I still don’t put a podium out of the question for Lewis tomorrow, which would be another amazing result for him in terms of damage limitation. He can run an opposite tire strategy with the fastest car on the grid that is good at managing tires, and this alone will always put you in a strong position to move very far up the grid by the end of the race. And while the Hungaroring is not an easy circuit to pass on, Lewis is probably the one guy in the field who has shown that it definitely can be done with his wins in 2009 and 2013. A Mansell-like win may be a bit too much to hope for, but with rain a possibility for tomorrow, anything can happen.

    1. Thompson says:

      You say that Paige but when you stop for a moment and think about it this is not unlike 08 & 12.

      08 slightly different in that it appeared the FIA were conspiring to cost him the WDC.

      But 12, how many failures whilst leading a race comfortably, take note how many failures McLaren have had since.

      Its really depressing – putting Hamilton at the back of the grid is a guarantee to spice up the show but it’s so unfair.

      1. Torchwood Five says:

        That is a good point; how many car failures did McLaren have once Lewis had gone to Mercedes?

      2. Super Seven says:

        Yeah, but if he’d stayed at Mclaren, he’d be in a car that’s slower than the Williams, Red Bull, Mercedes and Ferrari cars.

        If you’re not going fast enough to stress the car, it doesn’t break.

        I don’t think it’s a conspiracy. The Mercedes F1 team is about as German as my British born finger. Even the power plant is designed and built in the UK. This is just poor car preparation. Is this partly down to his race engineer missing due to the same accident that broke Toto?

        They’ve got to get their act together though. The reliability problems are ruining this championship.

      3. grat says:

        Better question… How many times has McLaren been leading a race since Hamilton left?

    2. Andrew M says:

      I think a podium would be a remarkable result given how difficult overtaking is. Hockenheim was much easier to come through and he made it through to third, with second the best he could have done without any mistakes. At Spain in 2012 (where overtaking is tricky much like here) he came through from last to 8th, and he probably has a slightly better car advantage here, so I think his estimate of 5th or so is about right. That would put him 29 points behind Rosberg, back to before Silverstone, but with three fewer races to make up the gap. I’ve been taunted before, but I think that really is game over barring another Silverstone.

      1. aveli says:

        very difficult to extrapolate in f1. we just need to wait to find out what actually happens tomorrow. there could be another twist in the tale.

    3. G Clarke says:

      Yes, I agree Paige…the continuous failures on Lewis’ car are “getting kind of old” but all Lewis can do at this time is gather his resolve and go forward. I hate conspiracy theory too. Lewis is genuinely quick and he has the second half of the season to overcome this run of unfortunate circumstances. From here on the odds are in his favour as far as I am concerned.

  10. TimW says:

    What does the guy have to do! Very little chance of a back to front recovery drive tomorrow, so the points deficit to Nico will probably grow even larger, through no fault of his own of course, although no doubt one of the Lewis bashers will pop up and try to claim that it is all because of his aggresive driving style! Nico is driving very well at the moment, he has made several mistakes this season but he seems to have got on top of that so probably another easy win for him.

    1. Brian Bell says:

      Nico makes mistakes and doesn’t suffer. He was a fraction of second from hitting the tyres in Q3. Would have been starting in 9/10th place or maybe pitlane. Canada shortcut? ‘cynical mistake’ and he gained. Monaco carpark ‘cynical mistake’ and he gained….

      1. Andrew says:

        Exactly, if Magnussen hadn’t crashed and the first lap of the session was the fastest ( the dryest) then Rosberg would have been 9th of 10th as he messed up his lap.

        So he has got away with it again.

  11. Tommy says:

    I just woke up (I’m a Nico fan); to the news of Nico getting pole, then when i saw hamilton as second before last, i cant help but admit that i was happy to see that. Hats off to lewis if he comes back and wins the WC, it’s still pretty close, i just hope Nico wins, been a fan for sometime, it would be great.

    1. alexander supertramp says:

      I understand you’re a fan, but reliability should not be a factor of this magnitude.

    2. Phil says:

      Do you really want him to win because of Hamilton suffering endless reliability problems though? If I was a Nico fan I’d want him to win the WDC through close battling with Hamilton and coming out on top – and at the moment they’re pretty evenly matched (or Hamilton is slightly ahead, only 14 points behind in the championship despite fighting with one arm tied behind his back).

      1. goob says:

        Jenson Button’s double diffuser won the WDC despite Button being at the wheel.

        There are still people who bother to think that Jenson has some great skill… if you want it bad enough, you’ll take it anyway you can get it.

    3. RichyS says:

      And such a sporting fan too.

    4. plantsman says:

      How to ensure nico wins wdc hire the fastest driver in f1 and nobble is car easiest way to control your nearest adversary.

  12. Michael says:

    @ Stefano What are u talking about showing loyalty and trust? He’s been doing that all season and obviously that isn’t working. Maybe, some of his mechanics need to be replaced. Clearly Rosberg has the better side of the garage.

    1. Brent says:

      I agree Michael. Hamilton is driving well, but Rosberg’s side of the garage are doing a better job. And of course, once in a while, things like brake discs fail.

  13. Kev says:

    The problem is Lewis, you need the team more than the team needs you. I bet Chiton or Ericcson can also win in this car with such a big advantage.

    Hence having a talk with the team is better than sounding threats over the media.

    1. Pkara says:

      What are you on about? :-D
      Its just mid season transfer media madness.
      All drivers are being linked with all sorts of teams.
      If you think Max Chilton can drive that car Mercedes wohld be knocking on his door.
      Simply an absurd statement.
      Alonso is linked with a few teams so is vettel & so on.
      Just another negative remark .

    2. aveli says:

      if what you say is in line with the team’s thinking, why don’t they ditch hamilton and rosberg for the two cheaper drivers you mention? do you have an idea how much input the from the drivers goes into designing developing and setting up the car before it is driven? I hope you’re awake now.

      1. Kev says:

        Why do you think Chiton or Ericcson are dumb and can’t provide feedback to the engineers? It is not like they were picked off the road while traveling to the circuit to drive for the team.

        They might not be fast but doesn’t mean they can’t be. And Merc advantage is such that the driver calibre isn’t a problem at least for this season.

      2. Pkara says:

        Well said Aveli .
        Absurd statement regarding Lewis Hamilton always come in thick & fast

        Give the man a break. Hes not a fugitive. Hes a Racer.
        He is not on trial though some people just pour negatively slanted statements.
        Its as if hes a criminal !!
        Simply absurd . Hive the man a break.

      3. Pkara says:

        Hive = Give :-)

      4. aveli says:

        @pkev, how do you know that I think any of the drivers are dumb? they are the best 22 drivers in the world in competition and the teams choose those they think are the best. they have the right to choose the best and so they do.

    3. grat says:

      “I bet Chilton or Ericsson can also win in this car”– Not when it’s on fire, they can’t.

      1. Kev says:

        I never said so. I am just telling that it is productive to have a discussion with the team in private than sound media warnings.

    4. Dave says:

      Spot on Kev. Ham can be replaced tomorrow. He should take some advice from the Indycar drivers. They don’t whine and blame the team and car. Guys like JPM, TK and the rest are media friendly and get enormous respect for it.

  14. Zaros says:

    Very disappointing I don’t think merc are conspiring to hurt Lewis but its very depressing as a LH fan to be constantly rooting for Rosberg to have a failure because Lewis is already at the back. Hopefully this is the last mechanical failure and there will be rain tommorow so Lewis can storm through the field for at least a podium hopefully a win.

    1. littleredkelpie says:

      yes that’s right … another chance to see how many cars Demolition-Hamilton can demolish on his way through the field

      1. Pkara says:

        Still on the magic mushrooms.

  15. Torchwood Five says:

    A long time ago, I adopted this from a Goldfinger novel:

    “Once is happenstance, Mr Bond.

    Twice is coincidence.

    But three times? Three times, that’s enemy action.”

    1. Chris G says:

      Very wise.
      Chitty Chitty Bang Bang is my personal ‘bible’.
      Ian Fleming is my life coach.

  16. AlexD says:

    Lewis probably knows that emotions don’t help. He just needs to become even closer to his team even though it is very difficult. I think his management is now in a position to really try and make everything possible to make him win and be happy again, make up for all the car issues he had.

    There are still many races, many things can happen. He needs to use this situation to completely swing his team on his side. Who knows. maybe they will give him better strategies when it will matter, maybe it will make mechanics to give 120%….there is also hope for him to win the last race with double points.

    He just needs to focus on perfect driving, no mistakes, building even stronger relationships with his management, mechanics and see what happens. Nobody knows, 2-3 races from now it can turn around and Rosberg can get 1 or 2 DNFs in the race.

    Everything is still open even though it looks very-very frustrating for Lewis. I wish him luck tomorrow!

    P.S. Ferrari fan:-)

    1. aveli says:

      why do so many people want to be in charge of hamilton? he didn’t just turn up. he was borne as a baby and navigated his way through so many obstacles to get to where he is so am absolutely confident that the way he chooses to deal with any obstacle is the best choice.

  17. Morning James — hate to add to the negative comments from yesterday, but sitting here waiting for your race report from Hungary. NBC Sports doesn’t air the GP until 9:00 a.m. here on the West Coast and all that was on CNBC was yesterday’s (old news) qualifying at 5 a.m. Bicycle racing is still their preferred content — don’t understand how the sponsors fro F-1 accept that policy. :-(

    1. Please disregard the comment above — somehow got a day ahead of myself. The channel guide has been modified overnight (or was flat misread) and now shows that the GP should be aired at 5:00 a.m. tomorrow. Apologies.

  18. A says:

    Well Neson Piquet said it right in 1987,Is a british team with a british driver and I am brasilian,is obvious they want him to win.
    When the favourite driver of the team gets challenged extrage things happens.
    Dennis admitted in China 2007: “we were racing against Alonso”
    Reutemann/Williams case in 1981

    etc
    etc
    etc

    Same here,no matter how much ppl say is not possible that they are sabotaging Hamilton,well they are doing their best to stir the pot.

    1. Voodoopunk says:

      …of course it makes sense now, pay him all that money just to sabotage his car…

      1. A says:

        Alonso and Piquet were too the best paid driver in those teams.
        Does not matter.

      2. David says:

        Or pay him all that money to ‘improve’ Rosberg: Villeneuve’s words, not mine.

      3. Torchwood Five says:

        @Voodoopunk

        I would assume that Ferarri were paying Felipe Massa a fair chunk of money when they deliberately broke the gearbox seal on his car at Austin, to put him five places back, and Alonso onto the clean side.

        So…your point?

      4. plantsman says:

        Of coarse it makes sense easiest way to control the fastest driver so your man can win

      5. Tim Sscam says:

        They paid him all that money before they knew what the car was going to be like. They dont need him anymore. The same thing happened to Webber. The only time his car had issues was when RB was so far ahead. Funny in 2010 he was error free.

        If Ferrari can pay Kimi $50m not to race Merc can d what they want with Lewis – he is good for WCC but not WDC now that they have no threat from other teams.

        LMAO at people trusting big corporations. They would kill your mum if it means they can get away with it and make more profits. Govts, corporations all the same we are all pawns

      6. Brian Bell says:

        Nooooo…they pay him so that Nico can have his telemerty and work out how to do fast laps. I’m sure one of the statisticians can tell us how many times Nico was quicker in FP1 and how the gap closed when he got Lewis telemetry. Upmarket and expensive driving lessons. :-)

  19. Ed Bone says:

    After the absolutely bizarre incident in Germany where marshals were forced to risk their lives to recover Sutil’s beached car, and for no reason, other than a sporting decision by Charlie Whiting that appeared to override a safety decision, I have come to the conclusion that something is not quite right in F1 at the moment.

    So when I read the report that there was no explanation for Lewis’s brake failure in Q1 at the German GP, I wondered if there might well be another unexplained brake failure this weekend for Lewis in Q1.

    Here is Lewis on today’s incident, as quoted on F1Fanatic:

    “I bailed out of that timed lap that I was doing and was going to do another timed lap and then something happened to my brakes. Something in the system failed. I had to engage some systems and then the engine just died”.

    That does not necessarily mean a brake issue. It could have been the hydraulics, then the brakes.

    But it looks all wrong.

    Huge international German brand, German Engine, German team: looking to make sure of a German WDC?

    It seems no journalist wants to go near the idea of race-fixing, but F1 does not have a history free of politics or cheating.

    We do need journalists to be less passive and seemingly disinterested and more investigative here, surely.

    There are questions that need to be asked, if only so they can be proved wrong and put the fans minds to rest that F1is after all safety-driven and is not being manipulated.

    1. Brent says:

      So Mercedes needs to prove they are innocent of sabotaging Hamilton’s car? The only people asking the question are disappointed Hamilton fans. All those Brit’s working at Mercedes are helping to sabotage Hamilton’s car? BULL!

      1. Ed Bone says:

        If you read my post you would have noticed that I suggest these questions need to be asked in order to restore confidence in F1 and indeed reduce speculation from all fans.

        I’d suggest even the most ardent of Rosberg fans and surely all true F1 fans would like him to win in a fair scrap.

        I repeat, there are major questions about safety

        1) Putting marshals lives at risk unnecessarily

        2) Unexplained brake failure last week

        3) A second serious catastrophic failure involving loss of brakes in a Mercedes car in 7 days

        4) And the sporting issue – are fans being deliberately cheated out of a fair fight?

        You Brent may not like Hamilton and therefore feel these issues should be ignored.

    2. Damonw says:

      Funny how today, a car goes off in slightly damp conditions, well away from the circuit and the session is red flagged whereas last week when a car was stuck in the middle of the circuit, needing marshals to cross the track only results in double waved yellows.

      1. RacingFanatic says:

        I was thinking the exact same thing mate. We all know why no SC was brought out last week though don’t we? :P

    3. aveli says:

      let the brave journalists ask the questions. f1 looks. Enter with 6 champions than 5 so why will they not go all out to have another champion?

    4. Brent says:

      Ed, I have no problem with Hamilton. Brakes fail, fuel lines leak, the FIA sometimes make stupid calls during races. Mercedes didn’t make the safety car call.

      1. Ed Bone says:

        No, but they did ask Hamilton to let ROS through today.

        Truly embarassing.

        And good on HAM for asking Rosberg to catch him up first. Clever.

        I am more convinced than ever that Merc want ROS not HAM to win the WDC.

    5. Brent says:

      I just about fell out of my chair when they asked Hamilton to move over. I would certainly love to hear a blunt, curse filled rant from Lauda about getting to the bottom of why such an outlandish call was made. Someone in a position of power made the decision.

      I don’t believe anyone has sabotaged Hamilton’s car at any point of the season. But I do agree there was some BS during the race that needs an explanation. If the FIA can get involved with Hamilton/Alonso and McLaren’s business in 2007 qualifying, they certainly should be acting on a team situation in which the one driver is purposely disadvantaged to the benefit of the other.

      There was no way Hamilton should have yielded the position. No one ever won the championship being courteous.

      1. James Allen says:

        We are analysing it for our UBS Race Strategy Report, but bear in mind ROS was on a 3 stop and HAM on a 2 stop, so it is normal practice for them to intersect when that happens and normal practice for the 2 stopper to let the 3 stop through.

        However as 1) they were racing each other to the end and 2) HAM was on the same plan as ALO and running to the end without making another stop, it’s understandable that he would not want to let ROS through and lose ground to ALO and RICC who would catch them before the end.

      2. Brent says:

        James, The constructors championship is a done deal. To me if Mercedes are going to lead us t believe their drivers are free to race for the drivers championship then we should never hear a request for anyone to move over. I knew, at the time, that had Hamilton yielded the place he would have finished behind Rosberg (my wife can confirm, I gave her a “mark my words”). I don’t know how Mercedes couldn’t have known. The finish confirms it.

      3. James Allen says:

        I agree – I was just pointing out that it’s common to ask a 2 stopping driver to let a 3 stopper through

        But this is all highly charged stuff!

      4. Samir says:

        If ros had a winning strategy why should Ham, who fairly earned the advantage of track position, either be requested by the team to abet ros or himself not get a pitstop for new options vs ros used options? And wasn’t ros missing the opportunity to race lewis.

        Any idea why the car was on fire and the brakes failed last week? Or why the safety car did not come out? Come to think of it I am still waiting for sound technical analysis of THAT Monaco incident barring mark Hughes report. More questions than answers for the moment. The sport is hardly winning fans for integrity, though there is no shortage of excitement

      5. James Allen says:

        2 stop vs 3 stop pace at that stage of the race. It happens all the time, but maybe not in this context

      6. Samir says:

        I meant didn’t ros state he would miss racing Lewis on sunday. I thought he would have been excited.

      7. Brent says:

        Samir, mechanical problems happen. Mercedes are not in charge of the use of the safety car. Even if (and I don’t believe it) Rosberg intentionally missed the corner in Monaco. It wasn’t Mercedes that did it and the stewards cleared him.

        Brembo built the brake that failed, not Mercedes. There is extreme pressure and very volatile fuel in the system. High temperatures under the cowling. A simple seal failure and you have a fire.

        In your conspiracy report it would be more balanced to include the times, in qualifying, that Hamilton has screwed up. I can think of one where Hamilton gave away the pole to Rosberg and then was gifted the win when Rosbergs car failed. Why don’t we have an investigation into Rosbergs car failure? Maybe Hamilton had someone tinker with Rosberg’s car. After all it was Silverstone and we know how important the win at “home” for Hamilton would be.

  20. Pkara says:

    CANT BELIEVE EHAT MERCEDES ARE DOING?!
    LEWIS DESERVES BETTER.
    WHOEVER MESSED THIS UP REGARDING THE FUEL LEAK OR WHATEVER ELSE HAPPENED SHOULD BE SACKED!!
    Its amazing how the dice are rolling I I’d rather have Vettel win again than Rosberg!!
    Its like someone in Mercedes wants the so called German to win.
    This is not an equal level playting field. Lewis is not jinxed its having incompetent staff on his side of garage. Another smirk filled podium for the Blonde blue eyed driver!!
    Simply gutting for Lewis…but I do wish him a stella drive without any mishaps on Sunday. Come on Lewis uour fav quote “And Still I Rise”… Kick Ass :-)
    Total shambles .

    1. RacingFanatic says:

      Lots of passion, sport needs more fans like you :)

  21. MistressofSpeed says:

    Dear All,

    Let’s put this into perspective. Nico Rosberg, Toto Wolff and Paddy Lowe were all singing from the same hymn sheet:

    http://www.mercedesamgf1.com/en/news/2014/2014-hungarian-grand-prix-qualifying/

    It is a well documented fact that Dieter Zetsche chairman of Daimler and head of Mercedes is in F1 to sell cars and reliability issues do not reflect well. So, as unfortunate as driver errors are, the problems that will resonate most will be those more closely aligned with future Mercedes customer expectations.

    I await Niki Lauda’s response as his position is the one that reports directly to Zetsche.

    At least Toto Wolff apologised to all Lewis supporters – I felt it keenly. Positioning myself in the hope that he would be waving to us all having secured pole. Instead, there were tears in my eyes – not from the smoking W05 but from the single gesture Lewis made as he looked back toward his stricken car.

    Yes, I know the guys will, as Lowe put it: ‘burn the midnight oil’ but how I wanted him to follow up his dominant P1, P2 and P3 with all the promise that appeared to be there for the taking. Now I have to hope the very best strategy gets Hamilton to the end of the race with his head held high.

    Yours truly,

    Mistress of Speed
    (Sitting in the stand directly opposite the Mercedes pit wall hoping that something extraordinary happens tomorrow).

    1. John Smith says:

      Totally agree, this is about Mercedes the brand. And this doesn’t play well with that. Mercedes and brake failure and Mercedes and catastrophic fire all words they don’t want paired up.

      This is bad luck, pure and simple.

      I am going to be fascinated to see how this pans out after Mercedes win the WCC.

  22. balazs says:

    I also do not think Mercedes is “conspiring” against Hamilton. For me it is just bad luck.

    Do you still remember 2013? One DNF for Hamilton (damage caused by a puncture after a clash with Vettel), and three(!) DNF-s for Rosberg, all of them due to car reliability (Australia, China, Hungary).

    I think good luck and bad luck is in balance in the long run – if we look at their two years together at Mercedes it is 5 problems for Rosberg and 4 for Hamilton, or 4-4, depending on how we calculate with Montreal, where Rosberg had problems but made it to the end.

    Rosberg had bad luck in 2013, Hamilton has it this year…

    And we also should not forget 2013 Malaysia, the team orders in favour of Hamilton…

    1. matt says:

      nico was trailing lewis in all those races,he was out of the points in one,9th in another,and 5 in the other one.plus they were not fighting for a wdc.

      1. balazs says:

        What do you mean when you say “they were not fighting for the wdc” or “he was out of points”?
        A DNF when “not fighting for wdc” is bad luck, a DNF when fighting for wdc is sabotage…?

      2. 500 says:

        OK, but that in no way negates the very valid point made, that over the balance of the two seasons, the car reliablity issues have been quaite balanced between the two…

    2. aveli says:

      how many has rosberg suffered while in a position to be on pole or on the top step of the podium?

      1. clyde says:

        I seem to remember the british gp

      2. aveli says:

        @clyde, the correct answer is 1.

  23. Ed Bone says:

    Mistress of Speed:

    “Nico Rosberg, Toto Wolff and Paddy Lowe were all singing from the same hymn sheet”

    I find that quite worrying, actually.

    1. MistressofSpeed says:

      Dear Ed,

      Would you prefer me to use a PR idiom/term?

      Well, I’d love to give you a well thought out response BUT I have a glass of wine in my hand, I was extremely SAD but now I’ve just heard that K-Mag chassis is twisted and he’s gonna start from the pit lane and as for Kimi – tomorrow’s race had better be GOOD as I’m distraught.

      Oh Dear! Thundery showers expected from 11am. What next!

      Yours

      Mistress of Speed

      On the bright side
      1, I’m in a covered stand
      2, I brought a jacket with me
      3, rain is always exciting – I sat on the hair pin in Canada in 2011
      And most importantly

      I’m STILL a LEWIS fan

      1. Ed Bone says:

        Dear Mistress of Speed -

        You are very funny.

        I hope rain is Lewis’s friend, and a brilliant strategy from his team, together with some scintillatingly fast pit stops, bring him back into a final stint shoot-out with Nico.

        It is what all fans of F1 and especially you Ms Speed, truly deserve.

        Have a great day tomorrow!

        Yours,

        Mr Ed

  24. Daniel says:

    Mercedes team plan for slower Nico to win:

    Step 1- sack Brawn, who favours Lewis
    Step 2- find a way to stop Lewis who is destroying Nico… I give you Monaco.
    Step 3- whenever there is a crucial pit stop, slow Lewis by a second or two
    Step 4- reliability on Lewis’ car

    As Lewis said “I don’t need luck; I just need no more bad luck, that’s all.”

    This is getting suspicious for me.

    1. JF says:

      No way Merc is sabotaging Lewis. Case closed. I don’t believe any driver has ever been sabotaged by his team deliberately, not in the 18 or so years I have been following at least. Strategy calls are another matter, sometimes a hard call has to made to another disadvantage, thats life.

      1. Ed Bone says:

        JF

        Check your history man.

        28 September 2008, on the fourteenth lap of the Singapore GP.

        Picquet, acting on team orders, deliberately crashed his car to give a racing advantage to Alonso.

        Pat Symonds, Renaults exec director of engineering, confessed, expressing “eternal regret and shame” for his role in deliberately sabotaging Picquet’s race and of course his career.

        Picquet has never raced in F1 since.

      2. JF says:

        What happened with Nelson Piquet was a different thing. Piquet did something deliberate in collusion with his own team, against a different team, for the advantage of his own team. What people insinuate is that Merc is sabotaging itself, makes no sense, too much money on the line to cripple ones one driver.

      3. Ray C Boy says:

        Piquet jr

    2. yst_01 says:

      It is a bit different. The first step was to get Lewis from MCL to MERC, Lauda who told him fantasy stories about getting WDC would make him more popuar than MSC, then to hire Paddy Lowe from MCL too, then give him millions of dollars, twice as much as Rosberg (to make him feel safe) and then burn down his car…….

      A master plan, that is working perfectly…

      1. JF says:

        You got it. A clear masterstroke. Merc clearly does not want the money from the constructors championship but would rather invest hundreds of millions to break down the career of Lewis Hamilton.

    3. Vinola says:

      S-a-b-o-t-a-g-e vs. Incompetence
      Is there precedence for this in f1?….the dominating team suffers 5 catastrophic failures halfway through the season, but the LEADING driver is on the receiving end of 4 out of 5.
      Very fishy.

      1. Vinola says:

        People say its “bad luck”….its either being intellectually lazy or indifferent or mischievous…I mean, what are the odds of 4 catastrophic failures (in one side of the garage) in 9 or so races in a DOMINANT TOP team in modern day f1?. Just bugles the mind.

  25. dazzle says:

    Lewis ‘ invaluable skill has benefited both Merc and Rosbberg, now Merc will sabotage his chances of another WDC as they clearly are currently doing and then discard him for Vettel in 2016…

  26. AlexD says:

    “There is neither luck nor ill fortune; bad luck is what we didn’t know or couldn’t foresee, and good luck is what we planned. There is a point, too, at which all elements in a team suddenly seem to work together.” – ENZO FERRARI

    1. matt says:

      luck is random,,we dont choose when we have good or bad luck……but i dont believe this is bad luck.

  27. David says:

    Mercedes reliability problems, or safety problems? It’s getting a bit worryingly serious now to talk just about ‘reliability’.

    1. Ed Bone says:

      Agreed

  28. Roger W says:

    A fire in HAM’s F1 engine is probably not going to stop anyone buying a road going Mercedes, I recall last year reading lots of posts on JAF1 regarding 2014 being the year of reliability issues with the new engines – no surprise it’s happening ….

    1. MistressofSpeed says:

      In order to sell more cars Mercedes Benz will want to leverage F1 success stories in all areas of Public Relations and Marketing.

      However, if the public is constantly reminded of F1 failures then Grand Prix racing will not harness the appropriate return on investment that Zetsche and the Board at Daimler will be expecting.

      Sure, someone wishing to purchase a Mercedes will undoubtedly purchase one, but the car buyer isn’t their only customer.

      Daimler have a global objective to increase their share of the rapidly expanding car markets where F1 has a presence with the Mercedes brand.

      In order to do this they will aim to invest in more dealerships/franchise partners who are tasked to attract potential car purchasers who can be converted to loyal and repeat customers – individual car sale purchases and fleet sales.

      They have chosen to use F1 as a marketing tool so success, reliability, fame and everything connected with Mercedes AMG F1 will have an impact on the messages they expect to use now and in the future.

      Let’s face it, pop into any Audi dealership and you will see their successes in racing all over the showrooms. Do you notice subtle references in Audi advertising campaigns; and, how many of their customers do you think are Le Man 24hr fans?

      Then of course, there are ‘customers’ who are Mercedes AMG F1 customers.

      1. aveli says:

        should they therefore be motivated in providing extra training for a dodgy fitter or a couple of them?

  29. JF says:

    He has had some back luck in quali to be sure, made some mistakes as well (most of the drivers have). But he also has the great fortune of having a car that gives him as good or better odds of a podium starting from the back as most of the guys have starting in the front 2-3 rows. A top five finish for him is very likely, a podium is a reasonable chance.

    1. aveli says:

      the whole story will be told tomorrow.

  30. michael grig says:

    it looks like the negligence/even sabotage comes out from answers;
    there is no fire without smoke;
    I think that Merc having both WC in their pocket (even so early into the season)
    could and would choose who’s to be ’14 WCD
    Just MO

  31. Peter says:

    Hamilton still has almost a second advantage on the majority of cars front of them, that must be enough to overtake even on this track, besides Rosberg still can have reliability issues tomorrow.
    Also, has Kimi a bunch of amateur engineers in his team? I am starting to wonder if Alonso cherry picked all the best staff onto his side of the garage way before the season.

    1. David says:

      I don’t think his catch-up speed is in that much doubt, at least to 5th or 6th place. The worry for Hamilton has to be (a) more going wrong with the car (what’s not possible any more, after all?) and (b) a collision during the first lap or two, or the kind of knocks he gave and received in the last race, diminishing his chances of a better finish.

      The wild card for Hamilton has to be a timely rainstorm (not too much for Whiting to get out his Rosberg-protecting safety car this time) after moving up to 8th or so with some skill and luck.

    2. aveli says:

      the track is not wide or straight enough for overtaking.

  32. JF says:

    No way Merc is sabotaging Lewis. Case closed. I don’t believe any driver has ever been sabotaged by his team deliberately, not in the 18 or so years I have been following at least. There is no physical proof outside of fan discussion board speculation. Strategy calls are another matter, sometimes a hard call has to made to another disadvantage, thats life.

    1. Ed Bone says:

      “I don’t believe any driver has ever been sabotaged by his team deliberately”

      Check your history.

      28 September 2008, on the fourteenth lap of the Singapore GP.

      Picquet Jr was ordered by his team to deliberately crash his car to give a racing advantage to Alonso.

      It took nearly a year for anything to happen, before an investigation was announced by the FIA on 30 August 2009.

      And that was ONLY as a result of media pressure.

      1. JF says:

        The Piquet incident is an interesting reference. Are you are implying that Lewis Hamilton is deliberately causing his own retirement or having quali “mistakes” in order to help his teammate? Are you saying the team is blackmailing him to tank quali sessions, and that he is complying? That is a very serious accusation against Lewis and Mercedes Benz. I don’t believe it.

    2. KJ says:

      You must have missed what happened to Nelson Piquet junior in his Renault at the race in Singapore when Flavio Briatore was in charge

      1. JF says:

        The Piquet incident is an interesting reference. Are you are implying that Lewis Hamilton is deliberately causing his own retirement or having quali “mistakes” in order to help his teammate? Are you saying the team is blackmailing him to tank quali sessions, and that he is complying? That is a very serious accusation against Lewis and Mercedes Benz. I don’t believe it.

    3. JF says:

      What happened with Nelson Piquet was a different thing. Piquet did something deliberate in collusion with his own team, against a different team, for the advantage of his own team. What people insinuate is that Merc is sabotaging itself, makes no sense, too much money on the line to cripple ones own driver.

      1. Ed Bone says:

        The point being that teams have, in the last 18 years to cite your post, deliberately sabotaged their own driver in order to accomplish the required sporting outcome for their team. With or without driver collusion. In fact Picquet claimed coercion, and was eventually invited back into F1 by Ecclestone.

        No two scenarios are going to be the identical, but one does not disprove the possibility of the other. However, the recent 2008 incident clearly demonstrates that some teams will indeed do the dirty on their own driver.

        And the singapore incident only came to light because of a media campaign.

        F1 needs a far more questioning and inquiring media to keep it on track.

  33. Steve S says:

    If you really wanted to talk conspiracy theories, Ferrari offers fertile ground. It’s remarkable how often they ruin Kimi’s race with their calls from the pit wall.

    1. Vinola says:

      There is a huge difference. Ferrari have NEVER subscribed to treating their drivers equally. No conspiracy there.

    2. Stefano says:

      My friend, I love Alonso

      But I believe there is very strange happening at the team.

      This need someone who is a leading top journalist to tell the truth about it.

      If this person exists?

  34. Siddle says:

    Whilst the original DNF in Australia put Lewis on the back foot the turning point of the season to date was Monaco. Nico was looking groggy from a series of strong races from Lewis and then a ‘mistake’ from Nico gave him pole. It was a low blow, wether deliberate or not, only Rosberg will know. He was completely unabashed by his good fortune, probably benefiting from the polish gained at his Swiss finishing school. Lewis on the other hand looked like a bad looser.

    Since then it appears that Lewis has been looking for a knock-out blow in qualifying only to miss the target slip over and for it to go the other way. At least the last two failures were outside his control.

    Far from conspiracy I think there must be another reason for Rosberg’s good fortune. With all this talk of Magic buttons in Mercedes I think that they have just not told Lewis where it is.

    On the other hand with all of this Magic about it could all be Wizardry. Come to think of it Nico does look a bit like Draco Malfoy. He is driving extremely well but It seems whatever he does his good fortune knows little bounds. It was only the collective will of the crowd at Silverstone that overcame the spell.

    I read that most of the Teams in the Paddock and other observers thought that Hamilton should have started from the Pit Lane in Germany. Also I read that Nico changed his rear brakes between qualifying and the race. If the latter were true they should probably have both been started from the Pit Lane. Now that would have been interesting. Perhaps tomorrow…….no Draco, sorry Nico, still has his wand.

    Whatever it should be an interesting race, let us hope so.

    S

  35. alexander supertramp says:

    I don’t know, bad luck or whatever you want to call it, this has been going on ever since the winter tests where Lewis was unable make a single full race simulation. Anyhow, worst case scenario Lewis is 39 points behind tomorrow. This was definitely not the last reliability problem for Mercedes and with 50 pts on the table for the last race everything is wide open. I reckon it might actually be a blessing for Lewis to be trailing Nico by 13/14 points in Abu Dhabi.

    1. Bullethead says:

      Double points means very little to Mercedes unless there is a DNF. In all likelihood Mercedes will take 1-2 in the final race. If say LH were trailing NR by 13 points coming into the last race then managed to beat NR to first then double points will have won him the championship.

  36. Darrell says:

    I expect a few people on his side of the garage will be out of a job after the summer, it’s getting beyond a joke it’s robbing the fans of good racing at the top end, because nico has no challenge at the front and to an extent if nico wins the championship if imagine it would be a hollow one, Merc need to sort Lewis car out not just on reliability last week brake failure this week a fire.

    1. AlexD says:

      “robbing the fans” – it really sounds strange. Robbing…would mean to take something that belongs to somebody else. Nobody woes anything to fans….

      1. superseven says:

        Perhaps that attitude is why F1 is losing fans faster than Lewis loses points. This is a form of entertainment, funded by advertisers. Without fans, F1 is dead. Compared to other sports, F1 is ludicrously expensive. Many people are figuring out that it’s not worth the price premium.

        The prices for the San Marino MotoGP range from 60Euros for a Sunday general admission ticket to 204Euros for the top Sat/Sun grandstand price. General admission tickets for the Monza F1 race are 94Euros for Sunday general admission to 704Euros for the priciest grandstand. Not much difference at the bottom end of the range, but the difference in prices for a decent seat are quite staggering.

        At Austin, the cheapest grandstand seats are over $350, and the most expensive is almost $1400. F1 seems to be going out of its way to alienate regular fans. I’m not saying that the two series are comparable (Left turn only racing is tedious), but the most expensive ticket at the recent Indycar street races in Toronto was $175. For that price you would have seen 2 main event races in 1 weekend and have the use of a 3-day paddock pass. That’s a huge disparity, and a great way not to grow the fan base over here in Leftpondia.

    2. Peter Wells says:

      I don’t think that Hamilton felt his last championship was hollow just because of the mistakes that Ferrari made which allowed him to get ahead of Massa – and I don’t think that Nico will worry at all – history will list him as the 2014 champion

      1. Kev says:

        Exactly. He didn’t win it in a resounding way. Limping to the finish while Massa was already celebrating the race win. Also Massa had more DNFs that season than him, but it won’t matter to Lewis as he had the most points at the end of the season.

        Similarly if Nico has got max points at the end of the season, I doubt he will have few thoughts about Lewis’ feelings.

  37. yst_01 says:

    To all lewis fans

    Vettel was P5 in the driver championship standings around the Singapore GP in 2010.
    He had another set back in Korea when his Red Bull/Renault caught fire…

    So there is still much, much hope for you, unless you think RB was sabotaging Vettel’s car in Melbourne, Bahrain, Barcelona, (Spa,) Korea etc. that year.

    But Lewis does not have room for errors anymore like in Q3 in Montreal, Spielberg, Silverstone, but as I wrote, it is not over for him.

    1. Richard says:

      Main diffrence, in 2010 there were five contenders snatching points from one another, this year it is only two. This mean that getting a solid point lead is very difficult, and in the same way it is very difficult to catch up in a championship.

    2. Dave Last says:

      You can compare 2010 to this season – there are no cars there to stop Nico from winning.

  38. Anders says:

    I think Ham should stop complaining. This starts to look like Petter Solberg when he drove for Subaru in WRC. Hamilton is to agressive, and that will make things happen. You can over abuse theese cars, and hamilton does have a record of beeing a bit imature behind the wheel…

    1. Torchwood Five says:

      If this had occurred while he was “over driving” during free practice, your comment would have more weight, but to catch fire on an uncompleted first lap, where he aborted because he wasn’t happy with it, you cannot, by any stretch of logic, blame that on the drivers’ aggressive driving.

    2. aveli says:

      good to think so, but don’t you think he has the right to make his own life choices?

  39. Felix Taggert says:

    This is another bad weekend for Lewis. Sincerely it appears that his mechanics at his side of the garage needs to be cautioned. Whatever happened to the control system of checking the car fully?
    It is very tempting to conclude that his team are sabotaging his chances of winning the drivers tittle! really only those inside the team will know whether it is true. As a fan of Lewis! my advice is that he gets his head down and salvage as many points as he can tomorrow. Who knows Rosberg may well have an incident tomorrow. But really this is not what we all want to see. We want two reliable cars being bashed about during the race. Common Lewis! common merc.

  40. JohnBt says:

    Despite Lewis having the best car, he’s been very unlucky past few consecutive quail. I really feel sorry for Hamilton. Kimi too and Marco Mattiacci storming past Ted with ‘no comment’ doesn’t help Ferrari’s image at all. Vettel’s improving quite a bit with lesser unreliability. Don’t think there’s conspiracy in Mercedes, that’ll be detrimental if proven true. Imagine the negative publicity for Merc. Not wanting to be naive I’m not one hundred percent sure.

    Races were exciting and now more drama amongst teams and fans keep the fire burning.
    Rain is a must come raceday, hopefully and it could the best race of the season.
    Come to think of it a wet track is what we need, been awhile.

    1. aveli says:

      they understand that it all blows over eventually but the results are written in history never to be changed so they get what they want.

  41. aveli says:

    if hamilton’s brake failure and fuel leak fire were done on purpose, someone could be done for murder or attempted murder. extremely dangerous.
    hamilton is absolutely right to ask mercedes to do better because his life is on the line here. it doesn’t matter how much money they pay him, they have no right to dice with his life. mercedes should work their socks off to ensure none of it repeated.I think they can remember why they pulled out of f1 for so many years. the strange thing is it is alway a different problem happening to the same car with the potential of resulting in an exciting race.
    all said and done, take these incidents out of f1 and it becomes boring indeed. that’s why we watch f1.

  42. Damonw says:

    Funny how today, a car goes off in slightly damp conditions, well away from the circuit and the session is red flagged whereas last week when a car was stuck in the middle of the circuit, needing marshals to cross the track only results in double waved yellows.

  43. deancassady says:

    the statistical improbability of lop-sided ‘bad luck’ for Lewis, is getting severe.
    sure it could happen.
    but, as I have identified this trajectory several races earlier, the spat of ‘bad luck’ episodes should be getting embarrassing for Mercedes, one way or another.
    this season seems more and more ‘designed’ in the championship, and it is really embarrassing for F1, as a whole.

    On a less severe, but more predictable note, the ‘bad luck’ for Kimi is getting rather ridiculous now, as well.

    I am no more a Lewis fan, than I am a Red Bull fan, but those whinging (rather loudly, I thought) last year, about the Red Bull dominance, and Webber statistically improbable ‘bad luck’, please take note of the current, much worse situation; at least there was some plausibility for the Vettel-Red Bull dominance.

    This year’s championship is a farce!

  44. Methusalem says:

    I was just reading Spanish news sites. Most of the commentators believe that Mercedes is sabotaging Hamilton’s cars. I also think there is something mysterious about the current Mercedes team. The constructors championship is almost done, Rosberg’s wins should suffice. I think the saboteur this time could be, not a German, rather a British: Bernie Eccelstone. Isn’t he in a very delicate court case in Germany?

  45. Paul K says:

    No way it’s Mercedes, if anyone was fixing it then it would be Bernie – what better way to add excitement than by getting the fastest car to the back of the field?! Add it some rain tomorrow and it will be Bernie’s dream race. But anyway, the fact it is in qualifying rather than races (touch wood) would suggest a fair bit of fortune for Lewis as at least he has the chance to make up lost ground in the race rather than automatically scoring ‘nil point’.

  46. Torchwood Five says:

    Some hours after, it does not seem logical that the Mercedes TEAM, eg. everyone that flew in for the race, are trying to nobble Lewis.

    But those who bandy the term “conspiracy theorist” around,
    - don’t use the ‘they pay him, why would they do this’ as a defence, as we have seen that has not been an impediment to Ferarri.

    - don’t, like the Sky commentators, say the damage to the Mercedes brand would be too much, as Red Bull’s brand image, and again, Ferrari, have coped very well during and after such controversies.

    Moving to Ferarri’s Raikonnen woes, this strategy group back at Maranello does seem to be oddly influential during a live grand prix.

    They seem to have a hand in the decision to keep Raikonnen in the pits in Quali One; and last year, or whichever year Alonso’s nose almost fell off his car, and the decision was made not to pit to change it, till it was too late, I’m pretty sure Maranello were cited as making that decision.

    Rosberg and Vettel, well done on the pole and provisional pole, respectively.

    Magnusson, he had no chance, looking at the onboard view.
    Dry track
    Dry track
    Dry track
    ‘Ello, that left tyre looks a bit slick
    Tyre wall!

  47. Phil says:

    Despite the amount of sensors on a modern F1 car I find it amazing that a continuous series of catastrophic failures can occur in Hamiltons car without sufficient prewarning to enable them to take the necessary avoidance action. Is it a question of reliability of the components or the lack of professional competency of his team engineers. Wev’e had:
    1. Engine failure,
    2. Gearbox failure,
    3. Fuel pump failure,
    4. Break disc failure, and now
    5. Engine fire
    Putting conspiracy theories aside you would agree this is a totally unacceptable performance from the Mercedes F1 team.

  48. Broke Disc says:

    You can’t argue with a conspiracy theorist because if it can’t be twisted or mistaken as ‘evidence’ then it is just either ignored or, worse, considered ‘proof’ of the conspiracy simply because it’s clearly part of a clandestine cover up. (And you wouldn’t need a cover up if you did nothing wrong right? Haha! Gotcha! More proof!)

    Lewis is always bitterly let down by his team, isn’t he? Ron, Martin, even Ross.. And now Toto, Niki and Paddy. It’s so obvious that he is being conspired against that his fandom can see it from 10, sometimes even 15 feet from the TV screen just as clear the light of truth being cast into the shady underbelly of F1. So clear is it to them that they probably don’t even need HD.

    But seriously, these ‘fans’ are bringing F1 in to disrepute. That’s a new one isn’t it? And F1 thought it had problems before.

    1. SilverArrow says:

      Agree – some of the things being said are absolutely embarrassing. Lewis is adding fuel to the fire (no pun intended) to further rile up his deluded fans. I’m not exactly sure what he’s thinking and whether he actually believes that putting out this ‘conspiracy’ message will help him, but if I was on the Mercedes board I personally wouldn’t be too happy if one of the two drivers and his fans brought so much negativity towards the team…

  49. Richard says:

    Been supporting Hamilton for the majority of the season, but to be honest, I don’t care considering it isn’t Fernando or Kimi. at this point, I hope that Rosberg will clinch the title way before the Abu Double, so we can get rid of it.

  50. Reuben says:

    Hamilton is having a bad run, no question but everyone seems to be forgetting that Rosberg is seriously quick….always has been! He came into F1 with a great reputation and whilst it took a while for his first win to come, he’s no second rate driver at all. Alonso aside, he’s the quickest teammate Lewis has had so far…credit where credit is due.

  51. greg says:

    I remember Schumacher having all the bad luck at Mercedes and don’t recall him ever being negative like Lewis.

    1. iGOR BdA says:

      Family, education, culture, values… not everyone has it.

  52. BMG says:

    I’ve never been a Hamilton fan but it’s starting to look like Redbull all over again. Its to obvious to be bad luck, he can do what Webber did, stay and complain or go somewhere else.

    It did not work for Webber.

    1. Matthew M says:

      indeed if Hamilton believes the team is the problem. Then he should be out at the end of the year.

      He needs to learn to trust his team. Atleast the Webber story had allot of evidence and testimonials supporting his acquisations of team bias.

      I havent seen any evidence at all to suggest Mercedes are playing favourites. But if there is it will come out eventually.

  53. RogerPGR says:

    Why would Mercedes bother to work hard to convince Lewis to move to there team, Paying him a significant amount of money in the process, Go through 2013 working hard to make the car better suited to Lewis only to then mess with the car to ensure Nico gets an advantage?

    And on the ‘German team wants a German champion’ comments. The team are based in the UK, The cars & engines are designed & built in the UK & Most of the mechanics & engineer’s are British. Its a British team in all but name.

    In response to someone suggesting incompetence from his mechanics…..
    If it was the same issue every time then perhaps that would be the case, However its been totally different things that have failed caused by totally different things each time.

    Melbourne was simply bad luck, A rubber seal around the spark plug split.
    Montreal was more down to Lewis not managing the ERS problem as well as Nico so you could actually argue that Lewis contributed to his retirement.
    The German brake failure was in part due to Lewis going with Brembo, Nico had suffered a similar Brembo brake failure in the Silverstone test which was a part of why he went for the carbon industry brakes.

    Today who knows what the root cause of the failure was.

    Oh & regarding the pit stops, Lewis himself has said that he’s been the cause of several of the slow stops by not hitting his marks.
    Even last weekend in Germany on one stop he was a few inches too long & again suffered a slower stop as a result of the mechanics having to reposition.

  54. Rishi says:

    There were a lot of comparisons to Senna & Prost a few races ago but I said back at the start of the season that this could be a repeat of the 1987 season. Nigel Mansell won six (seven?) races to Nelson Piquet’s three, but Mansell suffered from a string of bad luck and made the odd mistake while Piquet racked up a series of 2nd places when he wasn’t winning and took the title.

    Is it a conspiracy that Lewis is 4-1 up on failures? Look, I think the sensible answer is clearly ‘no’. There are plenty of perfectly good reasons for this: random chance/random events; one reliability failure leading to Lewis needing to catch up and therefore pushing parts harder than Nico, which spills into next race etc. I also remember Kimi Raikkonen’s spate of failures at McLaren in 2002, 2004 & 2005 as proof that bad luck can happen to one driver.

    However, this is sport and, in sport, the fact can sometimes be stranger than fiction. In that 1987 season, Mansell started to see strong signs that, in his mind at least, equated to Honda giving Piquet preferential treatment. I remember being convinced that Singapore 2008 could not have been deliberate for the same reasons that people are convinced that Lewis’s failures are not deliberate; how could you do it without being caught? And how could you do it when so many other cards needed to fall in your favour for your other driver to still win the race? None of those questions stopped the Crashgate scandal from being true.

    Moreover, Mercedes as a company very nearly pulled the plug on the F1 team a couple of seasons back, so disillusioned were they with results. What better for them to cash in on the team’s turnaround success then to do it with a German driver at the wheel? The marketing possibilities, one would imagine, are pretty endless in the context of “investing in German excellence” etc. however tenuous that slogan would actually look to F1 fans.

    So sadly, I can’t see the conspiracy theories going away. Even if Lewis’ hopes may get a boost if it’s wet tomorrow.

  55. Sidecar says:

    Some of the comments in here are absolutely mental. Lay of the magic mushrooms people. Merc did this Merc did that….bla bla bla. What a total pile of [mod]. So what is that what’s happening to the vet? He has broken down loads not that smiler this year. So did Merc tinker with the bergs car last year? He broke down more than hammy. Its complete and total nonsense. We are not talking about flabio here. Its paddy, Nikki and toto!!!! Can you Nikki going along with something like this? He would physically throw himself infront of the cars if he felt someone was cheating. Any one who thinks that Merc is actively trying to damage one if their own cars should consult a head doctor asap because you’ve taken complete leave of your sences

  56. JustGuessing says:

    Very sorry for Lewis.

    In the now unlikely chance of winning the world championship very little will be down to his performance alone. If on the other hand he does manage to win the championship it’d be one of the greatest achievements of at least the last decade. This amount of bad luck, as he himself said, in a sport dominated by the laws of physics and mathematics is looking more metaphysical every race weekend – is there someone sticking pins in a Mercedes car 44?

    the truth is out there

  57. aveli says:

    toto wolf could understand that mercedes should not accept the specifications of externally sourced without carrying out in house quality control to verify specifications. those brake discs could have easily been selected by a mechanic who was aware of them being defective. quality control should make sure verification takes place. anyone who incapable of selecting a healthy brake disc properly has no place as f1 technician . as for the fuel line fire, negligence jumps at me. there is no point in talking tough in front of the cameras. anyone who is not capable of fitting a fuel line properly should not be an f1 technician . there are many people out there capable of doing better. mercedes has more than enough money to set up ten teams of mechanics to compete against each other for the best to be selected and put to work in the racing team. what’s the point in going out of your way to employ hamilton if you can go out of your way to select the right team to work with him. hamilton can claim to be the best in the world. do any of the race mechanics work like their the best in the world? come on!

    1. Garry says:

      How do you know the Mercedes quality control processes?
      How do you know someone selected an unhealthy brake disc?
      How do you know someone fitted a fuel line incorrectly?
      When did Hamilton claim he was the best in the world?

  58. variable says:

    Hi James,

    what is the ruling on drivers having to qualify within 107% of the pole sitters time? did hamilton actually pull a lap time?

    1. James Allen says:

      He was competitive in practice so the stewards allow him to race

  59. Howard P says:

    He’s had consistently slower pit stops EVERY SINGLE TIME compared to his team mate. More failures too, approaching the rate Webber’s car failed when compared to Vettel the past few years.

    One can’t help but suspect foul play. Luck can only account for so much.

    1. Steve S says:

      “.. approaching the rate Webber’s car failed when compared to Vettel the past few years.”

      Webber had the same rate of car failures as Vettel over the last few years.

    2. deane says:

      ”He’s had consistently slower pit stops EVERY SINGLE TIME”

      No, he hasn’t.

    3. goob says:

      Yes… this reminds me of the way McLaren left him out on track with a tire that had the white carcass coming through the tire…

      There are forces at work that are trying to keep Hamilton down.. it might be something to do with keeping him at Mercedes longer, while he has no WDC, therefore they can have the fastest driver at a lower wage…

      It might be in Mercs interest to keep him suppressed.

      Michael Schumacher drew the crowds because he was legitimately fast – off course, even then, the FIA introduced a bunch of changes to suppress his talent.

      F1 is about money, and that’s why the crowds were missing in Germany.

  60. Steve C says:

    I find it strange that these F1 teams claim to be the pinnacle of engineering in motor sport when they cannot even assemble two cars without mechanical failures, as this seems to be. They are a joke. Would you fly in a plane designed by any of these teams…no way. We have better mechanics in the local garage. Heads should roll as we have seen last year MW and now SV and LH suffering with these “mechanics” who fail the drivers and the fans from a good race. Mass produced road cars don’t go up in smoke very often.

  61. Jason says:

    Look on the bright side, Lewis is working for his money. How easy is it going to be for him when he does start at the front? Nico is far from the polished driver. I’d say Lewis would be stuffed if he were up against Alonso but he isn’t. He is against a guy who made a mistake in Monaco and was lucky, had no rival in Australia, survived Canada only because he backed off, had no Lewis against him in Australia, again in Germany and now again in Austria.

    Lewis can be blamed for Silverstone. He should have finished the lap. Likewise Austria, he had no banker lap. However it is becoming a joke now and if Mercedes want to keep the fastest guy in F1 in their car, they better pull their finger out.

    Ironic isn’t it Lewis left McLaren on the back of a Singapore retirement and it was a Mercedes component at fault for that.

    On the flip side, put the best overtaker in the best car and let’s see fireworks :)

  62. David Goss says:

    As most teams’ reliability is stabilising, Mercedes’s seems to be worsening – serious issues at last 3 weekends.

    They’ll be relieved they have two great drivers to maximise points, because without them they could be in trouble in the championship.

  63. Goldy Jassar says:

    Bring bak t car, so Lewis could of use dat to qualify, start where was supposed to. Not on bak of the grid

  64. Jonno says:

    Lewis Hamilton had problem after problem when he was at McLaren. Since he left McLaren, their reliability has greatly increased.

    Paddy Lowe followed Hamilton to Mercedes, he’s in charge of the cars. Toto and Niki can talk all day long, the finger trouble at Mercedes needs to be sorted out by Lowe and I’m not so sure he’s up to the job.

  65. CHEESYPOOF says:

    James is it possible teams might be planning to sacrifice at other races so as to have fresh components at the final race with double points? I mean, I’d do it if it was the equivalent of two races.

  66. Ray C Boy says:

    Hey conspiracy theorists…

    “I’m devastated for Lewis. A Mercedes in flames is not what we want to show the world”
    -Toto Wolff

    Luck happens or doesn’t, whether you like it or not.
    -me

  67. Steve S says:

    Things could be a lot worse for Hamilton. If these problems (last weeks brake failure and this weeks engine failure) occurred in the race rather than in qualifying he’d be picking up zero points. And that also shoots a hole in the “sabotage” theory. If somebody really wanted to sabotage Lewis’ campaign the time to do it would be after qualifying and before the race.

    1. sarcosuchus says:

      No, you sabotage his qualifying position so that that he can STILL race to a poor finish. You still need the sponsor’s logos to get airtime on TV during the race. You need those advertising dollars to keep flowing.

  68. iGOR BdA says:

    I don’t recall Michael Schumacher ever complaining in any fashion against his teams in the years of bad cars, bad calls or unreliable equipment. Like, never! Even Japan in 2006, what a class act!

    Lewis Hamilton talks about the team as if he is detached from it. Like he is paying their salaries to provide him with some service or something. How peculiar.

    1. aveli says:

      why can you not learn that you cannot be in charge of hamilton? is hamilton schumacher? have you ever seen anyone like schumacher or hamilton, or indeed yourself? each human being is unique, there has never been and there will never be on other like that. whatever opinion you have on him, mercedes pays him tens of millions of pounds for his services.

    2. Andrew says:

      Did you even bother reading the article, or just the headline?

      “I think it’s getting to the point beyond bad luck – it’s something else. We just need to do better.”

      How exactly is saying ‘WE need to do better’ talking as if he is detached from the team? Hamilton always takes responsibility for his mistakes, I’ve heard many people say that he beats himself up too much. He is right about it being beyond luck and I very much doubt that Mercedes are treating these issues as bad luck, they will be doing all they can to make sure issues like these do not happen again.

  69. Ryan Eckford says:

    Well Hamilton is right. Mercedes can and must do a better job. It is quite extraordinary that unreliability is rife at this time of the season when cars were breaking down, left, right and centre in pre-season testing for virtually every team. It just doesn’t make sense. James, what are the other teams saying about the situation at Mercedes? The other teams are not in world championship contention, no matter what they may say, and surely must have a view about the world championship battle, and the speculated conspiracy theories surrounding Mercedes.

    1. aveli says:

      it’s not so hard to root out a dodgy fitter is it? but is there a political will to do it? that’s the other question.

  70. Dont Trust F1 says:

    Someone should look at the betting syndicates and how much has been placed on that Mercedes results Investigative journalism is what is missing in F1 as the journalists are seduced with f1 glamour and would never rock the boat. This is not a transparent sport. its run like the mafia ring.

    Fast cars, plenty of money, champagne, models and old rich men and people think its all above board LMAO!!

    1. JohnBt says:

      Your post could be very true, now you’re changing my mind. LMAO too.

  71. Carlos Marques says:

    Amazing how far we’ve come to think an engine fire is somehow related to a conspiracy theory… remember the 80s when turbos and engines exploded with uncanny reliability…Lewis should remember his big hero had a few engines explode at critical moments in a race and championship, and he kept his mouth shut and (I’m imagining a bit here) kicked a mechanic or two behind closed doors… the same with Michael at Ferrari and Mika at McLaren…these things happen…

    1. aveli says:

      you are not serious! it is the pattern of failures which is as abnormal as the exposure of the top f1 official with prostitutes, and should be investigated and eliminated if mercedes are not the culprits themselves.

    2. Dont Trust F1 says:

      The engine did not fail its the fuel leak Engine failure is commn – but fuel leaks is not. Go on tell me how many time we have had fuel leaks in F1 and how many top teams have suffered this? ! Lewis saboteurs are running out of every possible option to sabotage his car :)

      Bad engine
      Faulty Breaks
      Faulty Front Wing
      Fuel leaks

      Possible other options

      Roll bar faulty
      Gear being stuck

    3. Truth says:

      Senna keeping his mouth shut, you must be joking, take a look back and you will see just how many times he spoke out, a very emotional character indeed. I was around back then and remember well the many outbursts.

  72. DarrenD says:

    I just ran four trials of 19 coin flips each to see how “luck” plays out over a sample size equal to an F1 season…four seasons worth in fact.

    T1 – Heads 10, Tails 9
    T2 – Heads 8, Tails 11
    T3 – Heads 11, Tails 9
    T4 – Heads 7, Tails 12

    Longest streak of consecutive flips for one side: 5 (happened once in T2 and once again in T4)

    Number of conspiracies to undermine Heads over the four sets of trials: 0

    The problem this year is that the stakes are higher. Every breakdown or driving error is amplified in importance with a WDC on the line.

    The worst thing about the mechanical issues is that they have robbed us of seeing more great duels between Hamilton and Rosberg at the front of at least 3 races this year. Seeing those duels would have been the sporting ideal, but that is why races like Bahrain deserve the high praise they get. They are rare.

  73. Craig Sipple says:

    What a bunch of doom and gloomers you all are.

    Lewis i still going to win the championship, this will just make the champagne taste all the sweeter.

  74. aveli says:

    it doesn’t matter how many years experience the fitters have, they should still be taken off and provided extra training if they fit cars which fail suspiciously mercedes should adopt this as part of their improved quality control. we saw too many of such suspicious breakdowns at mclaren while hamilton was there.
    all it takes is the offer of money to make people commit sinister deeds.

  75. Colin Stone says:

    This latest disaster for LH is unbeliveable. I reckon there are now at least 3 incidents of possible finger trouble on MS/LH side of garage this season – ignition system, brake disc and now HP fuel pipe.
    MS also had less reliability.

    Seems that there is an issue on his side, and out there someone has a breakdown of the actual incidents. If I was LH I would be demanding that Lauda and Wolff investigate in depth every reliability issue from the very start with MS.

    This is not bad luck, it smacks of either deliberate actions or sheer incompetence.

    Also a good argument to bring back the T car. LH could have got back to the garage and completed qually.

  76. chris green says:

    there needs to be a regulation change to allow teams to bring a spare car to each gp

    car issues like hamiltons shouldn’t be allowed to spoil the show. it’s not a good look when teams can’t get both cars on the grid. it’s happened a few times this year.

    the current situation is very tough on mechanics and potentially leads to more mistakes. if f1 insists on running such complex machines then it needs to make allowances.

    the regs could be worded so that the spare car can only be used in strictly defined circumstances.

  77. Stevie P says:

    I was impressed by Lewis’s attitude and words (for a change)… sure he’s totally racked off about it (and the other out-of-his-hands issues), but keep those emotions in-check until you’re behind closed doors and then rant n rave about it, if you so desire.

    One thing’s for sure, it’s gonna be one helluva race with both him, Kimi and K-Mag making their way thru the field, so we (the audience) will be blessed with many overtaking attempts and actual passes. Also have a feeling that Dani-Ric wasn’t too happy (with his quali effort) and will have the bit between his teeth.

    Lewis will be able to make progress, because he’ll have reset his head overnight and be raring to prove what a great racer he is. Plus, with the threat of rain and cars flying off the track that’ll increase the chance of a safety car, thus bunching up the field.

  78. Richard says:

    I think Lewis is spot on with his initial assessment. At best this is complacency, at worst it is something altogether darker and unsettling. Lewis Hamilton is a great racing driver capable of the very best performances and it is simply unfair for him to be let down like this. Unfortunately where ever there is human endeavour at some point complacency sets in, and this sort of thing is the result. Mercedes in my opinion and at some level have become used to their own success. – Regrettably it manifests itself in areas that are unseen like a fuel connection or similar. Some of course will feel that there is something altogether darker going on, but that of course will be denied at the highest level.

  79. Richard cummins says:

    Look Merc would not deliberately do anything to LH car. But surely Wolf and Lowe have to be accountable for what is going on in the team. Anyone can say “they are devastated ” but this is a worldwide multi million pound business. What is going on at Merc is extremely unprofessional and terrible advertising for a car manufacturer. I am a LH fan but see much further far reaching implications from this situation. Merc could find themselves being booed on the podium like Vettel was. How will that go down in the board room? I can see LH leaving Merc and who could blame him? I suppose Martin Brundell and James Allen will be pleased though so that’s something.

  80. Cedgy says:

    As Allan Jones said about the incident: “Bring back the T-Car, fans want to see drivers on track not sitting on the pit wall!”

  81. TGS says:

    Any thoughts on strategy for HAM anyone? I think quick first stint on mediums, 5 laps perhaps, then on to the softs in free air as he makes up 1 second a lap on the 2nd place runner for 24 laps. Then when 2nd place pits he’ll come out behind HAM who then just has to nurse his tyres until they both make their final stops.

  82. ajay says:

    To stoke the conspiracy theories even more :-) I still cannot understand why there was not a safety car at Hockenheim- that was really weird, and I also cannot understand why, in Canada I think, Rosberg accelerates through the chicane run off after missing the turn to gain a huge advantage on Hamilton and not get a penalty of any sort. Gets away with a marginal call in Monaco.
    Some would call it fate.

  83. aveli says:

    team orders are stupid! and hamilton, a true racer, made the right choice. rosberg would only have finished ahead of him if he had let him passed when the team orders were delivered. rosberg should have tried to pass hamilton on merit rather than asking the team to order hamilton to let him by.
    alonso killed it for me today! enough respect to alonso! ricciardo deserves props but his tyres were much fresher. what a drive from alonso!

  84. etype says:

    How can a car run perfectly in practice then when it really matters screws up ?

  85. etype says:

    If it was a connection that came loose then it was not locked with wire or however they do it these days
    there is absoletly no excuse for a top team to have this happen.The fuel systems in F1 should be bomb proof.

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