Street Fight
Monte Carlo 2018
Monaco Grand Prix
Hamilton and Di Resta settle legal differences and seek to move on
Posted By: James Allen  |  11 Feb 2014   |  2:04 pm GMT  |  89 comments

One of the more bizarre episodes in F1 of the last couple of years has now been resolved with an out of court settlement between Paul di Resta and Anthony Hamilton, father of Lewis.

Hamilton briefly managed Di Resta, but the pair fell out spectacularly in 2012 over a mooted sponsorship deal for an energy drink and it led to Hamilton suing Di Resta for wrongful termination of contract and loss of earnings. The court case at the end of last year in London was painful to watch for both sides, with the evidence coming out on how their relationship had deteriorated.

Hamilton was accused by Di Resta’s lawyer of falsifying evidence by backdating emails and notes on his BlackBerry and at one stage he dramatically asked to return to the witness box to clarify evidence he had given. He had claimed that a box containing Blackberry devices containing evidence had gone missing in a house move. But then he found it again. Di Resta, meanwhile was made out by Hamilton’s lawyers to be “fixated” by the chance to make millions from the sponsorship deal.

“I am very sorry that Paul and I fell out to the extent we did, and I am pleased to put this matter to bed,” Hamilton said after the settlement.

The issue has caused some damage on both sides, with Di Resta’s options for an F1 seat limited in terms of being able to align himself with a team Lewis Hamilton was driving for; McLaren up to the end of 2012 and since then Mercedes.

That said, Di Resta now finds himself back in the German DTM series with Mercedes and it cannot be ruled out that he might find himself with a reserve driver role with the F1 team if the hatchet is now buried with Hamilton Sr.

Mercedes, like all top teams, has a need for experienced and quick drivers for its simulator programme, especially during a Grand Prix weekend when it can provide useful leads on set up for the race team at the track. Once the cars finish their practice sessions on Friday, for example, and the data is processed, the simulator crew at a team’s factory can keep “virtually testing” through the night, if necessary to find solutions and replicate problems.

There is also the occasional need – in the event of illness to one of the race drivers – for a reserve driver to fill the seat at a race weekend.

It will be interesting to see whether Di Resta’s position within Mercedes’ orbit changes now that the Hamilton case is resolved. Di Resta is now managed by the same group, led by Richard Goddard, that manages Jenson Button and McLaren reserve driver Stoffel Vandoorme.

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“A collective of self perpetuating togetherness” Spot on, what drove me off this site at its early days was that anything from outside that togetherness was deemed as provocative to those inside that togetherness, after a long time I thought that was something of the past, normally I tend to be around technical subjects but when such subjects dry-up I don’t mind a bit of bantering and being provocative without insults.

I know and fully understand ant except that the last word is that of the moderator, but the moderator is duty bond to use the same scales to weigh provocative posts from both inside and outside of that collective self perpetuating togetherness without any self feelings for one side or the other.

Anyhow I consider this matter closed now and hope we can get along well.


whilst i really don’t want to get drawn into a debatable discourse. i too have been known to post what could loosely be determined as ‘provocative comments’.

to be absolutely honest, yes, some of them have been, but only to shift the debate away from what sometimes seems to be a ‘collective’ of self perpetuating togetherness. sometimes it needs a jolt in order to canvas other more radical, but nevertheless important facts that are sometimes glossed over.

i do find this site both informative and very well managed with some highly intelligent posters. those factors alone are rather unique as i am sure you will appreciate.

i’m equally sure that if you sit back and think it through you may well see it all in a different light. a time for consideration…


Kenneth, Agree with your post but it only tells one part of the truth and not all (not all of the matter), and no it is not going to be seen as provocative with an axe to grind because it might be regarded as you being on the right side of the fence, on the other hand me quoting word for word what was declared in a court of law from on the other side of the fence was regarded as provocative and as having an axe to grind, what comes to mind is the old habit of drooling at the mouth when reporting things from the other side of the fence, things which I honestly thought where things of the past and forgotten, the reason I returned to this site, seems I was mistaken, but let’s wait and see if this post will be tolerated or chopped off.


the number of teams batting down the door to di resta’s garage with lucrative contracts for him to sign surely tells the truth of the matter. he is not on the grid for a very specific reason……NBGE


So I wasn’t told the truth when I was told “am passing it on” and “we looking into it” (the problem).

I admit that some of my posts must have been provoking to your (old) sentiments of which I thought that you was past such things but seems I was mistaken.


I am starting to suspect that the disappearance of my posts wasn’t of technical reason but may be more of an administration nature, a case of not upsetting the apple cart.


Some of your posts have been cleared

The ones that are deliberately provocative have not – simple

It’s the same for everyone. You have an axe to grind, grind it somewhere else


Well said, James.

I appreciate the fact that you took me out behind the woodshed and straightened me out, when my commenting once got outta control – and we haven’t had a problem since.

Tough love! Tough love…

You appreciate it when you’re all grown up!


the truth is raikkonen didn’t turn his back on renault when they failed to pay him his millions for so long.

di resta got into f1 on the hamilton ticket and bit the hand which fed him. now he is out of f1 without the hamilton ticket. speculating about the future adds to nothing. only what has actually happened is of value. di resta made the wrong moves by terminating his contract with hamilton.


Di Resta got into F1 due to his links with Mercedes which had been in place for years (I believe on the back of his cousin Dario to an extent who drove for Merc prior to his move to Indy).

If you read the details of the court case you would see that this relationship fell apart due to a some unorthodox (at best) business dealings. It is not a case of biting the hand that feeds.

Also, you may wish to read up more on Raikkonen who did infact turn his back on Lotus (not Renault as you state) when they failed to pay him (see last two races of 2013).


orthodox means the accepted norm and ecclestone’s dealings are the accepted norm in f1.


This does not back up “orthodox”/reasonableness etc in the slightest. Put it this way, If you would be happy for someone to act on your behalf and move your assets into a thirdparty offshore account hidden from you, and without your knowledge you will learn some very harsh lessons. I’d happily be your manager and I’d even waive the usual 20% fee!

Bernie’s case is governed under a whole different set of rules and regulations and the two cases cannot be compared.


what do you understand about unorthodox business dealings? is flavio not being chased by the courts for tax? did we not read all about a jailed banker who took bribe from ecclestone? did we not read about ecclestone trying to stop the uk government from banning sigarette advertising? did we not read about ecclestone being prosecuted by the german courts for business dealings? does he not still run f1?

hamilton was paul’s manager when he entered f1 and wasn’t paul’s manager when he exited f1. does di resta not have his mercedes connections? why can they not get him into f1 this time around? i’d love to read your answers.


Having your clients money resting in your offshore bank account is the text book case of unorthodox (and I am being polite) regardless of whether you have control of client money. This would set off alarm bells at any accountant, asset manager, wealth advisor, bank, building society the world over as it breaches money laundering regulations (and several other codes of conduct). Consider this a free education.

As for Paul’s F1 drive its clear to 99% of the motorsport world that if he had sponsorship cash to burn he would still be in F1 as he is more than good enough, even if he won’t be a world champ.


you can believe all that if you wish. i remember hamilton talking about turning his attention to bringing young drivers like di resta into f1 and setting up f1 testing for up and coming drivers long before di resta got into f1 and raikkonen didn’t report lotus to the courts.


It would also be great to get some insight on some big no-nos drivers should look out for when picking up a manager. Anecdotes would be fantastic of course.


Worst Scottish driver since David Coulthard


There is a huge difference in manor and attitude between Di Resta and his cousin, Dario Franchittti. Di Resta seems to be always complaining and angry, while Dario always had a positive attitude and worked well with his team and teammates.


Great point, Flyboy.

Wonder why Cuz’ didn’t cuff Paul on the head and remind him of the need not to be an insufferable whiner?


James – it would be great to see a piece on the great driver managers of the current and past years. Particularly in like of David Robertson’s recent passing.


Depending on the talent you manager.

Mr. Robertson Snr. Rest In Peace…


What qualifications do you need to be a manager of an F1 driver anyways?


Be a member of the magic circle..pif paf blackberry



1. Attract drivers capable of winning in the lower series.

2. Be tenacious and charming enough to get your foot in the door so teams and sponsors pay attention to your talent.

3. Have enough capital to fund drivers when you can’t raise a budget when needed.

4. Ruthless when it calls for it.

5. Loyalty when it calls for it.


No qualifications, just connections.

Looking at the competence level of most managerial positions around the industries and world(to make F1 management look better), qualifications are waste of time and effort.


Would be good to know which way the settlement went.

Can’t imagine Hamilton Senior presented himself as a massively reliable witness.


Judges usually mention whether a witness was a satisfactory witness or an unsatisfactory witness … a too-clever-by-half manager is almost always likely to be an unsatisfactory witness … once spinning is in your blood it’s hard to stop.


Neither party emerged better off from this whole episode. It was all a bit unsavory really. That being said, I don’t believe that it made much, if any, difference on Paul Di Resta’s chances of securing a 2014 F1 seat.

He has had 3 solid years in F1 in which to prove that he has got what it takes to be a future world champion (which is what the top teams are looking for). Given that the likes of Nico Hulkenberg couldn’t even manage to find a top seat for 2014, it was always likely that Di Resta, who has been comprehensively outshone by Hulkenberg, was going to be sent packing from the F1 grid at the end of 2013. Consistency just isn’t enough in an ever more competitive F1 series. (and even his consistency was questionable in 2013).

To even suggest that this issue between Anthony Hamilton and Paul negatively impacted on his ability to remain in F1 is incorrect in my opinion. If he was good enough, I’m sure Mercedes would be more than willing to place him alongside Hamilton. But he isn’t… so they won’t. Not because of Lewis’ Dad or any court case.


Yeah, ironically I think the media’s (and Paul’s) constant talking up of Paul’s chances for a top seat also helped to alienate the fans. I kinda have an eye roll to the suggestion that it’s still not his fault that, far from being picked for a top team, he hasn’t managed to get any drive at all. (Not saying that no external factors like sponsorship etc. come in to play, but I think a lot of the blame has to lie with Paul himself.)


Agreed on the first point. I found it very striking that BBCs Eddie Jordan, on hearing Maldonado complaining about team at beginning of 2013 season, it was all “breakdown of communication, that driver and team will be splitting”, but when the apparently same came from Di Resta, absolutely no such comment from EJ.


This is a very sad situation, nobody really wins in these situations. I remember I think it was 10 odd years ago when Jenson’s manager (at the time) told to him to sign for Frank when he was still under contract at BAR…….that situation was rather smelly and ended up with Jenson having to pay some of his considerable salary to Frank to stay wth BAR. Happily, Jenson ultimately stayed with the right team, even if it was a rather convoluted route to his world championship in 2009. Alas, the same cannot be said for Mr Hamilton Snr and Mr Di Resta. Advice to young drivers: chose your managers carefully. Very carefully. Very, very carefully……..

On a lighter note, good to see Lotus/Team Enstone get some mileage under their belts. Roll on Bahrain testing boys and girls of F1!!


The irony though is that his one and only F1 drive to date was obtained through the same manager – something that seems to have been forgotten in all the discussion.

Bit disingenuous to suggest that the matter prevented him being picked up by bigger teams too- Paul can’t go about always being the victim. He could have chosen to sort/settle this matter before court, instead he chose to counter sue .

3 years in F1 is ample time to shine through any distractions.


Have you actually read anything about this case? Hamilton took Di Resta to court. Not the other way. It was also Hamilton’s side who asked for the case to be dismissed. You don’t settle if you lodge the petition and expect to win, you see it through.

I have also never once read anything where Paul has suggested this court case stopped him getting a drive anywhere.


Hamilton filed a claim re:contract/wrongful dismissal – along those lines.

Paul CHOSE TO counter claim to prove the contract termination was justified – it is the process of hearing this justification that has produced the salacious details that have done neither side any good.

Paul could have CHOSEN to settle instead (regardless of competency or what not – just on the basis of closure or even in acknowledgement of past relationhip or on the understanding of his future position as written in the article or knowing that he terminated the contract the wrong way – any number of reasons why settling was the better option before it got to court but Paul didn’t and yet somehow we are meant to believe he was the victim – Again!

if Hamilton is dismissing said case NOW then i would go as far as speculate that there has been a settlement NOW – several months of reputation damage and PR disaster later.


No, it was has rather bitty personality……………….


great post, hamilton got di resta into f1. di resta is out of f1 without hamilton. hamilton reported di resta’s action to court and they settled out of court.


Agree. When you think about it, Jenson in 2000, Fernando and Kimi 2001, and Lewis in 2007 all had great debut seasons, where as Mr Di Resta was more middling to be honest. More advice to young drivers looking to get into F1: make sure in your debut season you make up everyone sit up and take notice. More advice: having some sponsorship money doesn’t hinder you either………………..

In all fairness to the manager/driver relationship, sometimes its the drivers who make bad decisions. Back in summer 2004, Mark’s manager Flavio had two contracts for him to sign, one for Renault or one for Williams. Imagine that: in 2005 and 2006 Mark, at his peak, driving alongside Fernando in a world championship car………….but Mark chose Williams………even Mark admits he should of bitten Flavio’s hand off for a Renault contract, but there you go……….


How unfortunate for everyone involved. It sounds like there were no winners here. Very interesting to get a little insight into Hamilton’s personal trials and tribulations. Perhaps this accounts to a degree for some of the difficulties he’s had over his career being focused on the job at hand. Hard enough to develop a strong sense of independence and self worth on your own without the dark clouds of your families personal business failings in your front yard.


I had no idea this was going on.

Amazing to get an insight into the politics that goes on behind the scenes.

Shame to see a drivers career impacted by commercial aspects, but that’s the way of the world now days.


Likewise I never heard any of this either.

Apparently these wavelengths do not propagate across the pond.


I think Paul was dropped because of his dour demeanour, his constant blaming of the team for any failures, his constant claim that any success was his idea, being regularly beaten by his teammates and an overall failure to inspire or lead any team of people.

As opposed to his legal wrangles with Hamilton Snr (who Lewis has distanced himself from as well over the years).

Paul obviously thrives in the DTM environment – some drivers are extremely talented at different skillsets – perhaps F1 is just not for him. It must be terrible to get in if it’s your dream and find it’s not suitable – but then if it’s a choice of being an also-ran in F1 or a regular champion in some other discipline – why not accept you are better suited to other forms of racing?

It’s like a TV actor struggling with bit parts in big budget movies. Just accept you’re not the next Tom Cruise or Brad Pitt and go back to being well known in a TV environment.

There’s no shame in being a great DTM champion.


I agree completely – Paul should have taken a leaf from Schumacher and Ferrari in the early days. The honest comments and thoughts should be delivered to the team behind closed doors. Had he been more supportive of the team on the outside he might still have a drive.


“his dour demeanour, his constant blaming of the team for any failures, his constant claim that any success was his idea, being regularly beaten by his teammates and an overall failure to inspire or lead any team of people”

You’re just describing the average Scotsman!


Gordon Brown, Alex Salmond, George Galloway, Scotland football team (so much pride in national sport – best to have a national sport you can win at!), Scotland rugby team, Paul Di Resta…………….


Jim Clark says Hi and he disagrees


Indeed the exception disproves the rule. I stand corrected.


I agree Mr Di Resta doesn’t have the affable nature of Jenson or Sebastian, or the street suss [sic] of Lewis, might have hindered him in the, ahem [cough] media savvy world of F1,


Di Resta has no image.

F1 is a pretty boy sport – no place for good drivers (and they’re mostly all good drivers) without a strong media friendly profile.

Cantankerous Scott is not a media friendly profile unless you’re winning multiple WCs.

It’s a media vehicle first and a racing series second. And we love it.


Agree with your comments David, apart from pretty boys – Mark always looked like, to quote Jeremy Clarkson a “walnut faced son of the soil”, while Pastor looks like he would head-butt you given half a chance (I bet he’s butted a few Williams walls in his three years there). Just saying……….


Regularly beaten by his teammates? See below stats from James’s article on how Paul and Adrian got along head to head.


Faster qualifying time: Di Resta 11 / Sutil 8

Best qualifying finish: Di Resta 5th / Sutil 6th


Points finishes: Di Resta 9 / Sutil 7 

Ahead in two-car finish: Di Resta 9 / Sutil 4


Points: Di Resta 48 / Sutil 29

Championship placing: Di Resta 12th / Sutil 13th

Check your facts before!


I seem to remember sutil had a lot of reliability issues and didn’t Paul bin it a few times?


And you check your facts too – sutil beat Paul in 2011 and Hulkenberg beat him in 2012 – i.e. He lost to his teammate in more seasons than he won. Hence my statement. Which coincidentally has been mentioned by the team that just dropped him…


” if a driver is perceived as a moaning uninspiring complainer he better have some stats to back it up – Paul doesn’t sadly. A lot of F1 is perception and confidence and Paul has built a bad image for himself.”

< < < < Dude, Paul di Resta could serve as a case-study at Harvard Business School on how to self-sabotage one's professional career! Well said on your part.


I am not focusing on Paul’s attitude or personality – I couldn’t care less. What is important is that the team disliked him – he had his own crew actively speaking out against him. No team wanted him. I am sure he’s a lovely bloke and immensely talented – but unless you come with buckets of cash you better inspire the team around you – and Paul didn’t.

Its been stated by a number of journalists and those with connections in force India that Paul drove a wedge between himself and the team. I am saying, in reply to James opening article that the incident with Lewis hamiltons father is not the sole reason he is back in DTM – it’s the team disliked him and word got around other teams that he wasn’t worth picking up.

Clearly Paul is talented and doesn’t irritate his team in DTM (or does well enough to overcome any personality clashes). My point was that if a driver is perceived as a moaning uninspiring complainer he better have some stats to back it up – Paul doesn’t sadly. A lot of F1 is perception and confidence and Paul has built a bad image for himself.

It seems that he might just be happier if he admits F1 is the wrong environment for his talents.


You may wish to revisit the stats in more depth. Yes, Nico came out on top but Paul was ahead until his car went several races with chassis damage that went undiagnosed. Overall during the 2012 season there was less than a place between them on average (even when accounting for mechanical failure and fluke results being removed from the stats). It was much much closer between them than the Hulk fan boys suggest. As for 2011 it was Paul’s rookie year and lets not forget he was rookie of the year that season – the year Checo and Maldonado also came into F1 and they arguably had better machinery underneath them.

And as for 2013, Paul’s DNFs in an “undriveable” or “carrot” (as per Sutil) of a car just show how hard he was pushing on the whole. Paul repeatedly stated that SFI needed to push at the start of the season because McLaren et al would catch up and this was the point of the season (pre tyre change) when SFI repeatedly ruined weekends with car faults and poor strategy. I think Paul was entirely justified in pushing the team and yet people like to claim he was whinging. No, it’s called pushing. 90.9% of the grid moaned as much or more than PDR through his time in F1. Even the normally chipper Button moaned repeatedly last year.

If you actually listened to PDR rather than focusing on the fact he is Scottish you might actually see that he does have a personality, a sense of humour and more talent than half the 2014 F1 grid.


And for how many years has Sutil been in F1 before 2011 when Paul was on his first year? I find it hillarious that you compare the results of a rookie with those of a pretty experienced driver like Sutil.


I agree. I’ve always thought of Di Resta as a very capable DTM driver. He should seek to thrive there.

F1 is too volatile, it doesn’t guarantee you stability, unless you’re a Champion or a pay-driver or carry some sort of millionaire sponsorship.

Perhaps in the future a more mature Di Resta can have a career in F1.


For sure, Hamilton didn’t have to take this episode to the courts for what it did was just smear his character as a skulduggery, under hand operator.

Anyway, glad the two men have let bygones be bygones but one can’t help feeling sorry for Di Resta for having got the wool pulled over his eyes.

As for F1, unfortunately, it’s also thanks to Hamilton junior that he missed out on a top team drive.

Yes due to Di Resta’s connections with Mercedes in DTM, he was the favourite to land the Mercedes gig once Schumi retired but alas, Lewis headed in that direction and so he got dropped

And to be honest, am not sure Di Resta can make it back to Formula 1 because DTM is like the graveyard for F1 careers like what happened to Mclaren’s Gary Paffet.


Moral of the Di Resta/Hamilton story >>> Never hire anybody that’s been fired by their own son.


“…his character as a skulduggery, under hand operator.”

in that case, a perfect manager…someone who’ll do whatever it takes to bring you home the bacon!


“skulduggery, under hand operator”

Stop the search…we’ve found our next Formula 1 boss.


more like “never bite the hand which feeds you”.


Mr Feret, did you really mean to use that adjective to describe the fraud? Perhaps the typo should be modified for posterity. But I liked your PS observation.


I think “full brown fraud” has a certain ring to it…….and, perhaps, a certain truth to it also.

And the use of “pokies” – goferet, are you an Aussie? Going to Melbourne?


@ Brisbane Bill

Lol… Now that you mention it, it kind of rhythms.

And no, am not an Aussie so won’t be able to catch the race in Melbourne.


@ Chris Ralph

Lol…. Excuse the typo matey.


What a crock…

Hamilton’s dealings are no less shady than most sporting managers… Heck, just take one look at what Flav has pulled in his time to see how tame it is.

Also, Hamilton was the target for Lauda and Wolff for most of 2012 – they lept in the chance when his McLaren relationship fell apart. Meanwhile, DiResta was content to put in mediocre after mediocre performance, assuring himself that he was doing enough to earn a drive.

I liked him when he joined F1, despite hi demeanour, but he neither improved his attitude, nor his performances.


When di Resta first came into F1 he had a spring in his step and you could see the fire burning. In 2012 and 13 things started to slip away from him. It’s not easy to maintain drive when you have a totally dominant car/driver combination making it impossible to reach the top. Despite seriously out-pointing Sutil 48 to 29, he lost the drive. In 2014 the fire had gone out and he was boreing to watch and boreing to listen to. This must be the first time a driver has bored his way out of a drive.


J Danek – of course it’s not Seb’s fault. You have not understood my point. It is just very hard to maintain motivation and once lost it becomes a downward spiral which was certainly not helped by having a major dispute with his manager. Who was there to boost his morale and stop him sinking?


I think you have the dates a wee bit mixed up!

The problem with F1 is that unless you have the car, stand out performances are hard to achieve. All you can ask is relative to his team mate whom he out performed. It’s a tough competitive game and things are not always what they seem. As for Red Bull they have been dominant on all counts. This year 2014 will be interesting to watch as the balance of power one way or another may have shifted. – I hope so because watching Newey’s sublime aeronautics was getting a little boring!


“It’s not easy to maintain drive when you have a totally dominant car/driver combination making it impossible to reach the top. “

So it’s Seb’s fault?

C’mon, man…


@ Optimaximal

You’re right man, not very easy to get ahead in the world without cutting major short cuts.


Nico Hulkenberg probably had a better shot at gaining that Mercedes seat, rather more than Di Resta.


I’d love to know what Lauda is saying to Hamilton there…


You have mustard on your shirt…


Nice to see you arrive fashionably late Graham, but good effort nonetheless 🙂


“No, you’re not going to manage me…I’ve been burnt once enough already.”


“Pull my finger!”


Beat me to it! 🙂


“You fooled me the first eight times Lauda, but I’m onto you now…”


“Can you ask Lewis to stop burning his tyres out after 15 odd laps????”


“I might not be able to wear ear rings but I’m a better driver than your boy will ever be”


Love this!


Lauda “If you say you can get me on the Red Bull Young Driver programme, then okay…. But you’re on a percentage, not an up front fee!”


With respect to the man, I think Lauda’s days of being on anyone’s young driver program are long gone 🙂


Dear Mr D,

I certainly did miss that 🙂


Dear Mr 79

I’m hoping you haven’t missed the suggestion of Hamilton Senior offering something he clearly cannot deliver, while expecting a profit regardless.

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