Hamilton says Rosberg should have been on podium

2013 Malaysian Grand Prix

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Lewis Hamilton said he felt his team mate should have been on the podium instead of him after the Malaysian Grand Prix.

Hamilton finished third with Nico Rosberg close behind him. But Rosberg repeatedly lobbied his team to be allowed to pass Hamilton, who was backing off to save fuel.

Hamilton was quick to pay tribute to his team mate on the podium after the race: “If I’m honest I really feel like Nico should be standing here, generally he had better pace than me throughout the race. But he’s a great team mate and did a fantastic job today.”

“I can’t say it’s the best feeling being up here but racing is racing and I really just got to keep looking forward,” he added.

Rosberg said Hamiltons’ words were “nice to hear” and added he didn’t feel like the team owes him payback for his obedience:

“I understand I drive for Mercedes, for you guys at home who put your life into building this car over the winter and doing such a fantastic job. I’m pleased to be able to do such a great result for the team.

“But of course there’s a small side of me where I want to go flat out all the way to the end and we up on the podium myself. But the time will come for that.”

Team principal Ross Brawn repeatedly denied Rosberg’s requests during the race to be allowed to race Hamilton. He said the team were holding position after dropping back from leaders Red Bull:

“I think we obviously lost the race around the last pit stops,” said Brawn. “The prime tyre didn’t work so well for us in the third stint of dry tyres. Having lost it initially it was a question of bringing the cars back in the safest form.”

Brawn added they have cut it fine on fuel with both cars: “We were tight on fuel, the pace was a lot stronger in the race than we anticipated and we were tight on fuel and we needed to make sure we didn’t overdo it. Once the opportunity was gone there was nothing to be gained.”

He said Rosberg understood Hamilton would be expected to do the same under similar circumstances: “It works both ways, the drivers know that. We discuss these things before the race. Of course he’s very competitive and he’ll be a bit frustrated but it works both ways.”

2013 Malaysian Grand Prix

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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144 comments on “Hamilton says Rosberg should have been on podium”

  1. Refreshing honesty and humility from Hamilton. Not the sort of thing you expect any driver to say and I respect him for that.

    1. I agree that this reflects really well on Hamilton. He knows exactly what happened and he’s speaking the truth.

      I don’t think it looks so great for Brawn. During the race they told Nico that Hamilton “could go faster if he wanted” and that this was why Nico couldn’t overtake. In reality it appears that Hamilton had run out of fuel and would not have been able to resist an attack.

      In contrast to Hamilton’s honesty, Brawn has basically lied to a team member in order to (understandably) gain more points for his #1 driver. Why not just tell him the truth? Nico showed today that he is a team player, the least his manager could do is trust him.

      1. To be perfectly honest, I think Nico will be told that just not over team radio for the world to hear

      2. @smallvizier

        I couldn’t agree more. I found it absolutely pathetic when he told Nico that Lewis could go a lot faster as obviously that wasn’t the case.

        Also if a driver wants to save fuel, the best way to do it would be by slipstreaming behind their teammate or any other car for that matter. So I don’t buy the whole “fuel” drama. However low Lewis might’ve been on fuel that just wasn’t the case why Nico was told to hold position.

        But it only makes sense they wanted Lewis in front in order to maximize his points if they really feel he has a better chance at the championship. Not that I agree with all that as I think everyone should have a fair shot but I guess it’s understandable why it happened.

        However, I think Lewis made up for all of it with the way he handled it. Kudos to him because it’s refreshing to see such honesty in F1 for once. I wonder if Fernando would ever do such a thing. :)

        That said, in that respect I would still give Mark the edge, though. It’s refreshing every time you hear him speak!

        1. @aced I think it was Nico’s fault. If he felt that he was faster that Lewis why didn’t he just overtake him? He had 2 DRS zones to do it. Instead he asked Ross to move Ham out of the way. Of course Ross’ answer was negative. They were in for a bagful of points if they crashed he would have taken the blame for scre*ing both the points and Hamilton. I’m pretty sure that if Nico tried to do the job by himself Brawn wouldn’t have impeded him.

          1. Actually, Nico wasn’t asking Ross to move Lewis completely out of the way. He was just asking for the green light to overtake him after being specifically instructed to hold position.
            And, yes, he may have failed to overtake him before that but it doesn’t change the fact that he could have just breezed past during the end stages but again was specifically told to hold position and so was Lewis.

      3. In one part Rosberg passed Hamilton and Ham got the place back, maybe he wasnt lying

      4. I think Brawn would have got stick no matter what he did. Imagine if their new driver, Hamilton, ended up 4th instead of the podium that would validate his decision move to Mercedes in the public eye?

    2. Honesty and humility,yeah right.If he really felt that Rosberg should be on the podium he would let him pass easily.The truth of the matter is that Hamilton ran out of fuel and was defenseless,not sure if Hamilton would do the same,actually i’m quite sure Hamilton would blast him easily.And if Rosberg was a true winner like he’s not,he wold have past him just like that,like true champions do,ignoring team orders.The fact that he’s so obedient means that he doesn’t believe in him self enough,and fears his team.Not the marking of a true winner.Lost a lot of respect for Rosberg today,true champions shot first and ask questions later.

      1. If Hamilton would have let him passed in such circumstances, then how does that make Brawn look, not least the team? 2 races in, Hamilton definitely did the right things here in the situation he was in.

        Hamilton did right, Brawn didn’t, and that’s who Nico should be annoyed with.

        1. @john-h How many points does one get for being annoyed?And it’s not just points,you dont get respect,you command it,you stamp your authority.Just like in Australia Alonso doesn’t wait for the team to call him in the pits,he simply comes in and tells what tyres he want,and get’s on with it.You get to be a leader by leading,not by being led.Rosberg is setting himself up for a number two driver status,and by the look of things,that’s what he really is.

          1. Coming in for a pitstop and making the whole team, especially your boss, look like idiotic fools by disobeying a direct order in front of everyone are two very, very different things. Besides, I don’t think Hamilton enjoys the same level of comfort that Alonso does in the Ferrari, yet.

      2. I’m with you on this. PR garbage from Ham,if he felt that Nico deserved to be on the podium he should have told the team to let Nico past. He’s as bad as Vettel and Alonso. In fact working with Brawn he could become tarnished like Schuey

        1. Big Schumi fan here, but Hamilton did exactly the same as he did in Austria 2002: “Barrichello deserved to win…”. Right.

      3. +1

        But expressing that before the world standing there was very nice. I still think the best way to do it was let him.

    3. Defenitely shows that both Hamilton and Rosberg are better at handling the inner team cohesion than Vettel showed. I guess it might be because these guys do know eachother well and have huge respect for eachother.

      At Red Bull, its only natural that Webber feels he will not get much support from the team, the memories of several incidents mostly from 2010, but some from a later date, are too deeply cut in to forget about them.

      But now back to Mercedes, its nice to see how close it is between these guys and I hope we see a tense fight between them. So far Hamilton is on top.
      On a different not, didn’t they underfuel Rosberg as well a couple of times in the last 2 years, I remember him falling down from the lead, or a podium, because of not being able to fight back for having to save fuel. Seems its something they keep doing all too often.

    4. There are some true things which are not mentioned in all these discussions. Rosberg tried at least during the race two times to pass Hamilton and he failed. If he could pass Hamilton why did he ask the team to let him pass Hamilton?
      Till Brawn said negative, I thing, everything was so far fine because if a driver can pass his team mate, he doesn’t need to ask the permission to pass his team mate and he should do it because we are in sport and the best must win even though it is not always the case in reality.
      What I don’t agree with, are the explanations of Ross Brawn which came later when he was asking rosberg to keep his position. By doing that he took position for a driver and that it is something I disapprove in the redbull, lotus and ferrari teams.
      I great therefore the words of hamilton and rosberg for each other. I appreciate their mutual respect which should be a lesson for Vettel and Webber and the other teams.

  2. Honest, humble, and sportsmanlike. Good on him. It’s disappointing that they didn’t race properly but that’s a good attitude to take.

    1. Hamilton did the right thing by admitting that he felt like he should not be the one on the podium, so if he is true to his word, and the situation is reversed in the near future, he would want to do the same.
      Also, what Rosberg did showed he is more of a man that Vettel ever will be.

      1. And less of a Champion.

        1. + many many 1’s!

    2. @driftin sad for Rosberg, he’s just put himself in the “I’m second after him” role. He should’ve flown past Hami.

      1. He tried that before but did not succeed.

  3. He should have let him past on his own. Simple as that. Normally don’t have a problem with team orders but I don’t see the need for this as early as second GP.
    Ross Brawn is a piece of ****! He just made Barichello out of Rosberg!
    Cudos to Red Bull drivers for exciting and clean fight.

    1. @5150 clean fight?

      Webber slows down respecting teams instructions and he’s told Seb will do the same and coast to 1-2 and then finds himself under “friendly fire” because Seb did not turned down his engine to catch and then pass him?

      1. There’s a pretty big difference between Rosberg and Barrichello.

  4. Was he also specifically instructed to stay ahead of Rosberg? If not, why not let him pass in some clear and obvious way, instead of paying him tribute on the podium?

    I would soooo love to pay a gushing tribute to whomever, as long as I get to occupy the place he deserves.

    1. I think Hamilton did the right thing by just racing at the pace he would. I would respect him less if he simply moved over…

    2. He would have made Brawn look ridiculous had he done that even if he wanted to. Not the thing to do in your 2nd race for a new team.

    3. Yeah that’s my feeling. Many are saying that Hamilton is being a good sportsman, but like Vettel’s apology it’s just lip service. If Hamilton felt so bad for holding Rosberg up he would have pulled over for him with no risk to the team’s result.

      The correlation to this is that Nico could have done what Vettel did and taken the position he felt he deserved. Overall, team orders like this so early in the season are not appreciated and I say this as a Ferrari fan! At least they don’t force Massa out of position until Alonso is clearly ahead of Massa in the championship.

  5. Actions speak stronger than words. Lewis should have moved over for him.

    1. A true champion never moves over for anyone. Hamilton owes Rosberg nothing.

      1. Then he should have said what he said. Its like saying one thing but doing the other. Completely fake and purely done for PR.

        1. should’nt*

          1. +1 Joshua.
            Hamilton is not a true champion. Not in his word nor his actions.
            Says one thing, doeas the other. Championlike? NOT

          2. @5150
            Ham definitely behaves like a true champion. A true champion takes responsibility for his own destiny and grabs opportunities by the scruff of the neck. Rosberg on the other hand complains to Brawn like a little girl (I guess that’s why they call him britney).

          3. Raul (@sennahakkham)
            24th March 2013, 11:39

            As a father i sometimes have to punish my kids, i dont like but it needs to be done. Does that make me fake.

            The only thing Ham did wrong was to utter those words att all. He owes Rosberg nothing. This racing for all its worth.

            As they say dont blame the player blame the game.

        2. @joshua-mesh
          Ham didn’t say ‘I should’ve let him pass’. He said “If I’m honest I really feel like Nico should be standing here”. The onus was on Rosberg to take the initiative and overtake Ham, not for Ham to let him pass.

          1. +1
            Really difficult to see Hamilton can be faulted here, though some people try.

          2. The onus was on Brawn just to let Rosberg go past while Ham was coasting. They both obeyed team orders, but it was those that were wrong, not the actions of the drivers.

      2. Hamilton has moved over in the past while at Mclaren, so it isn’t a big deal to him.
        What matters is when a team tries to just deceit to achieve that, in this case the team was straight forward about what they wanted to achieve.

    2. 1. Most people believe that Hamilton is a better bet than Rosberg for the WDC. Therefore it makes sense (taking the long view) to have Hamilton finish first.

      2. Hamilton was ahead because he performed better in qualifying. He is very good at this and he did better than Rosberg. Therefore he earned his position.

      3. We’re praising Rosberg for doing what the team wanted. Let’s face it, if Hamilton had moved over then the team would have been furious.

      I agree that Rosberg was faster and I would have loved to see him get his podium. On balance, had they been allowed to race, I am sure that would have happened. But Hamilton would have been crazy to move over and I believe he made the right decision.

      1. I am sure if the situation was reversed you would claim that team should have instructed Rosberg to move over.
        Hamilton should prove that. Believin g is nothing. So far thre’s nothing in between them for me.
        You don’t think Massa is better than Alonso because of qualis or do you?

        1. @5150, you’ve missed the point. I’m not talking about what the team’s decision should have been.

          I’m saying, given that Hamilton was in front and the team wanted him to stay in front, he would have been crazy to move over.

          If Massa had been in front of Alonso and Ferrari had told them to hold position, then I’d have expected Massa to hold position. Similarly if Rosberg was in front of Hamilton and the team told him to hold position, I’d expect him to hold position.

          It’s nothing to do with who’s “better.” You respect your team manager’s instructions, instead of taking matters into your own hands.

        2. You’re not paying attention. The team did the wrong thing, not Hamilton. Had Hamilton moved over it would have been ridiculous. Come on, people need to use their heads here.

    3. Raul (@sennahakkham)
      24th March 2013, 11:31

      I dont agree with your opinion. Hamilton is a a racer at heart. Meaning if you want something take your shot. Gifting your teammate a place is not racing.

    4. Hamilton honestly cannot do anything right for some people. It’s a shame.

      1. Hami and Seb are in the same boat. They should pair up at Ferrari. That would be a show I’d watch.

        1. In the future Ferrari get their 3 per team car wish and have Hami, Seb and Alonso as the Drivers….

          1. +1000000000

          2. It would be a Ferrari 1-2-3 every race!!!!!!

          3. It would be great but Berne would loose money so don’t see that happening …….. But it is a dream and a treat to think of it

  6. If Rosberg wanted to be on the podium, he should’ve grown some balls (like Vettel) and overtaken Ham. Much like Massa and Webber, Rosberg has solidified his position as a No.2 driver.

    1. In formula 1 the team is bigger than the driver even if your 3 time undeseving champion Vettel

      1. 3 time undeseving champion

        3 time deserving champion

      2. Why is vettel an undeserving champion in your view?

    2. +1, and he probably lost the few fans that thought he might one day become WDC.

    3. I don’t think Rosberg has the capacity as Hamilton, his first season in Mercedes and he already matched Rosberg. Give him till mid season and we will see better of their rivalry.

    4. I don’t understand where all the hate and rudeness that you’ve shown in the last few comments is coming from but I don’t think what you’re saying is right.

      Both Lewis and Nico are professional and experienced enough to know that when Ross Brawn, the team principal and not just their engineers, issues a direct order you are going to obey that order no matter what it is. It has absolutely nothing to do with one of them being a true champion and the other a little girl like you mentioned above.

      Oh, and by the way, you should also consider the fact that Lewis may have been also instructed to hold position and not make way. Usually in these sort of situations both drivers are given instructions regarding what they’re going to do.

      1. Both Lewis and Nico are professional and experienced enough to know that when Ross Brawn, the team principal and not just their engineers, issues a direct order you are going to obey that order no matter what it is.

        If that’s the case, and Britney Nico is a professional, why did he dispute Brawn’s decision for so long?

        1. @hellotraverse

          Now you’re just nitpicking on purpose but I’m going to give you an answer either way.

          First of all, it is just not as simple as you’re making it out to be. Second, there’s nothing that suggests that he was being unprofessional by disputing the decision. If you take into account the circumstances in which the call was made it’s very hard to argue that it wasn’t unfair on him so I think that gives him every right to.

          For a racing driver it’s hard enough to accept such an order even if they’re out of the competition let alone in such early stages of the season. And that probably contributed even more to his frustration let alone the fact that he may have even felt somewhat betrayed by the team that he’s been with for so many years now. If you take into account all the factors which contributed to his protests, I’d say he remained pretty damn professional about it and in the end made the right decision.

  7. Would I be too bad to say that if he feels so, he should have let him pass by himself?
    Anyway, I’d give him credit for saying that…

  8. Good to hear from both drivers. Would have been nice to see Hamilton let Rosberg through if he felt so strongly about it though. Hopefully everyone will learn, Rosberg will get his payback and all will be well again :-)

  9. That is properly mature Lewis. Really good of him. :)

  10. The Red Bull and Mercedes situation has been one of the most stark examples of two sides of the same coin.

    Mercedes could have let Nico pass safely without direct consequence to the team itself, and it was a shame to see him flounder behind Lewis for 10 laps. But it also showed how a team is able to control it’s drivers and make genuinely sound decisions. It was after all, very important to bring those cars home safely. Frankly they were very lucky there was nobody close behind them to steal the positions!

    As for Red Bull, I already stated my disgust for Vettel for displaying his arrogance and clear feeling of self importance in another thread, but I’ll add here what the other side of the coin is. That was some incredible racing between them. If that had been Lewis on Vettel or Kimi on Alonso or any combination of any drivers fighting for the lead we would be singing songs of praise about how great the last stint of the race was. It was the situation that lead to it that has clearly over shadowed the brilliant display of racing skill we say earlier this morning.

    At the end of today the race was both excellent and aweful. It just depends on what a great victory is to you personally. As a Webber fan, I was obviously seething with anger and to a degree, still am…

    1. +1. I also think that there is no need of two drivers in one team! They are all top drivers eager to win races and WDC. I wish that they are 20 indepedent teams/drivers racing each other!

    2. I agree, it was a pretty sweet bit of racing (although whilst watching I was just thinking, my god they’re gonna crash). My problem is that they were told to hold station which at that point in the race was fair in my eyes, leading 1-2, the Mercs falling back, no need to risk the 43 points for the team.

      As it stands after the race, okay Vettel was quicker overall, but had they done a repeat of Istanbul 2010 (which there were some pretty close moments) and they end up losing the constructors championship by about 40 points from a double DNF in a 1-2 position, man I wouldn’t wanna be Vettel when he Should have just stayed behind.

      Even in the drivers championship, Mark truth be told won’t be up there by the end of the season most prob, Alonso was out, Kimi down in 7th, and Lewis in 3rd (but most prob Merc’ll fade away as the year continues). What was the point in risking a fair chunk of points?

      Anyways might’ve rambled on a bit much. Don’t get me wrong, it was more exciting than watching Nico follow Lewis for however many laps, and I’m all for team mates going all hell for leather at each other. There’s just a time and a place, the last stint in a 1-2 with the team telling you both to cool it and coast to the flag… that’s not the time or place.

  11. I’m not a hamilton fan but from what I saw on that podium today from Hamilton made me gained some respect from him if I were Rosberg I would have thanked him for having the courage to admit he wasn’t faster than Nico and for feeling that Nico should have been on the podium.

    As for Webber and Vettel it is going to be an intersting next couple of weeks.

    1. He didn’t say he wasn’t faster, but that he was running out of fuel because he was going faster than expected.

  12. Ross clearly has authority within Mercedes and managed his drivers well today. That might focus a few minds as they consider their increasingly top-heavy management structure.

    The mutual respect and friendship between Hamilton and Rosberg showed clearly today. They both know that if the positions were reversed, the team would act in the same way. That’s also true of Ferrari and McLaren, but not of Red Bull, which is why we have lots of friction in the latter team today and not with Merc.

    1. @red-andy, I disagree on two counts.

      Mercedes – I believe they acted today to maximise Hamilton’s points as #1 driver. On this basis if the positions had been reversed, they would have let Hamilton race, knowing he had more fuel and would eventually overtake.

      Red Bull – they do treat their drivers the same. At Silverstone in 2011, Vettel was ahead and they ordered Webber to back off. Today, Webber was ahead and they ordered Vettel to back off. The problem is that both times, the drivers ignored Horner. This is certainly a sign of a team with problems! But they do treat their drivers equally.

      1. I for one don’t believe that Lewis is the favorite as if in another race Hamilton is in the same position as rosberg is today I think Ross Brawn would have made the same call.

        1. Agree entirely but the story that Hamilton is favoured was already there, pre-packed, ready to be applied at the slightest hint.

          Personally I’d have preferred to see Rosberg continue to try passing, Hamilton may well have relented eventually too, I think, but I can understand (a) Mercedes not wanting to tell either driver to give way except when the faster driver behind has a chance of beating other drivers in front (which is basically the same as McLaren) and (b) not wanting to risk a 3-4 finish, which for them is a real morale boost and probably better for both drivers over the course of the season, irrespective of the order they finished today.

      2. On Mercedes, it would be pretty silly of the team to be favouring one of their drivers so early in the season, particularly when on dry weather pace in practice and qualifying, Rosberg largely had the measure of Hamilton this weekend.

        On Red Bull, it’s more about perception than reality. If Webber perceives he is being treated unfairly at the team, that will have a huge impact. The key thing on that score will be how Red Bull respond, away from the limelight and the cameras, to Vettel disobeying team orders. If he is “protected” as Mark predicted, that will not bode well for team harmony.

    2. They both know that if the positions were reversed, the team would act in the same way.

      what a load of BS, you can’t possibly know that.

  13. As Lewis was bullied as a young boy it is normal that he doesn’t like unhonesty. It was the reason why he left McLaren. Anyway I think that this was Brawn minimizing the damage. Maybe RBR should’ve did the same.

  14. Rosberg on several occasions did get ahead earlier with Hamilton getting the position back almost immediately. This was costing them time and tyre life. I guess the team already made the decision that whoever was ahead after the final pit stop will hold that position. And in fairness to both drivers, Hamilton neither tried to block nor Rosberg made any serious attempt to pass.
    I think there will be no ego problems at Mercedes, you won’t hear the team boss excessively praising one driver over the other, but will just acknowledge both drivers contribution to moving the team forward.
    China may well be the race Rosberg will be the driver ahead after the last set of pit stops.

  15. While I understand this is the best for the teams, and what Vettel did is ‘wrong’ from the team’s perspective, it makes me wonder if I really want to watch F1 anymore. Too early in the season to be worried about ‘bringing the cars home’.

    1. For Mercedes it is a home race and a strong finish was going to be good for the sponsors. As for RBR, it has always been a controlled mad house there.

    2. Team orders are part of the sport and always will be but for me it doesn’t take anything away from me in terms of excitment in Formula 1. What if for example would you like to watch this race with no overtaking or no excitment just watching cars go round? I watch it for on track battles swaping postions lap after lap wheel to wheel racing because I find it entertaning, sure team orders are a flaw but its just a tiny one.

    3. Similar to Schumacher era, but in this case there are 4-5 teams with a chance to win the title in contrast to Michael’s time.

    4. Raul (@sennahakkham)
      24th March 2013, 11:46

      The main problem is tyres going of and no refueling. When the field is tight the teams nurse the cars alot making it more vital to obey orders. Ferrari is always Ferrari but the rules do enforce this kind of behavior because its beneficial for the teams.

    5. Except that Mercedes guessed the fuel consumption wrongly and told their drivers to chase the Red Bulls in the second stint, which led to Hamilton (and maybe Rosberg too) having to conserve fuel. Hamilton did his part and jumped ahead of Vettel, but perhaps paid a higher cost than Rosberg for implementing the team’s strategy at that stage, and perhaps Mercedes thought it would be unfair to then penalize him further for their earlier plan.

      If you don’t like team orders (and I don’t much either) then less dependency on tire (and fuel) maintenance is probably the way to go. Otherwise the drivers are stuck having to listen and follow the team’s advice much more than they probably want.

  16. I think really what is needed is for team orders to be banned until a clear championship picture has evolved. There was no need for team orders from either team in the race today, the drivers know how to race each other. However, regarding the orders, a team order was actually given, and like it or not, that should effectively become the law. Rosberg heeded the call, Vettel did not. Whilst I understand he wanted to go for the win, he did so against orders not too.
    As I say, orders are orders. Whilst the orders weren’t needed, they were there and therefore should be followed.

    1. We tried that, but banning team orders is practically impossible due to ‘codewords’ and the suchlike. Besides, it certainly gives us something to talk about today! I find the driver/team conflicting interests really intriguing, giving F1 a certain uniqueness among sports.

      Vettel may have got the points today, but the respect he will have lost inside his own team will come back to haunt him at some point I’m sure. Not so much the action (because Webber actually did a similar thing when not ‘maintaining the gap’ a couple of years back), but the fact he seems to lie about it to the media afterwards, saying he did not know until after the race. Did he not hear any of his team radio? Of course not Seb…

  17. Hats off to both the mercedes drivers for their loyalty

  18. Can someone please tell me y Nico was not allowed to overtake Hamilton? I read all the comments about how humble Lewis was to acknowledge what Nico did but what I dont understand is y was this necessary? Nico fully deserved the podium, his side of the garage had fuelled his car properly, y should Lewis take podium?

    1. Blame the game, not the players. Ross is the key. If he see a chance he grabs it. That is his way. Lewis had 10 points, Nico had 0 prior to this race. It simple as that. If you remember how Michael won his titles.

    2. Raul (@sennahakkham)
      24th March 2013, 11:56

      I think Nico had a little more fuel than Ham but not much. If they were aloud to race the cost of racing each at that point would have exhausted their already depleteing resources and risking a shure third and fourth place for the team. The general assumption people are doing is assuming that Rosberg had much more fuel even though both where on the same strategy.

      If a fair teamorder would be issued then that order would have been race eachother not “Lewis Nico is much faster than you!

    3. Lets not forget Hamilton was the guy that had the pace to push the Redbulls for 2 thirds of the race, not Nico. he was the one able to apply the pressure until it became apparant the amount of fuel they put in his car wasnt enough. Nico did a Button today and trundled along behind his teammate, sure, he had fuel at the end, but for a reason, because his overall pace was slower.

      1. Well, he was able to come back at the pack, and he could easily have overtaken Lewis. Just because he was behind his teammate for most of the race shouldnt mean he should finish behind Lewis.

      2. NR’s overall pace was not slower. He started behind LH, did several fast laps throughout the race, and in the end had reeled LH in and was obviously able to pass and go faster were it not for the team’s decision. That is why LH said it was NR that belonged on the podium, not him.

      3. Rosbergs pace was evidently NOT slower across a race distance. At the end of the day completing the race in the shortest time possible is what counts.

        If we are to assume that both cars were fueled equally, then it’s apparent that Hamilton tapped into extra fuel in the first part of the race to go faster than Rosberg but it made him considerably slower towards the end of the race when he had to save fuel. Hamilton didn’t pull away from Rosberg enough during the phase when he was using more fuel.

  19. I think this is team’s fault. Hamilton is not clear number one yet and Nico also closely matched since day one and today he was faster. Brawn should respect his longtime mate. Also I don’t think it’s gonna be dangerous since Hamilton was clearly slower. Too bad.

    1. I dunno, Rosberg tried about 5 times laps after lap to pass Hamilton on the back-striaght, only to have Hamilton re-take the position on the pit-straight. Maybe this is why Brawn said to Rosberg that Hamilton does have the pace to be quicker but is being slower on our orders.

  20. For the red bull guys, it is obvious that Vettel is the number 1 and Mark has to deal with it, and whoever is in that second red bull would be in the same position as long vettel is in the team.

    For the Mercedes guys, hopefully both drivers will get equal treatment, however for this race I believe this was necessary to please PETRONAS sponsors. It really would have been disastrous if both mercs were out in PETRONAS territory.

  21. So many people in here lauding bad behavior, us-sportsmanlike conduct & blatant disrespect… it’s sickening & ridiculous. Here we have two drivers actually doing what their boss instructed being criticized & berated by some people, who simultaneously laud another driver for basically giving his team the middle finger, putting his own selfish agenda ahead of his entire team, even risking contact & a double DNF! And this is the guy you like? A guy being PAYED millions to do a job… not asked to do a favor, mind you, disobeying his bosses and risking his team & teammate’s results by acting out his own selfish play? Is Formula One not a team sport anymore?

    1. Any overtake has the chance to end in a DNF. And Mark Webber knows all about disobeying team orders, so why did people hail him for his actions then, but criticise his teammate now, in the same scenario?

  22. Please understand that Nico did in fact overtake Hamilton one 2-3 occasions along the back straight. However, any intelligent driver would instead wait to make a move along the front straight. As a result on each occasion Hamilton came by Rosberg.

    Seeing this, I think Ross Brawn has every reason to step in and put an end to the duel as it could have ended ugly for the team.

    Moral of the story – Rosberg was given the chance and license to overtake Hamilton but never could make a pass stick.

    1. I was thinking this also.

    2. @himmatsj

      Its a good point you make. I was wondering the same thing.

      Whatever the case, Nico proved to be a real team player..and most definitely accepted his role as a number 2.

  23. Nigelstash (@)
    24th March 2013, 12:10

    I guess we will never know the exact fuel loads, but I do wonder if they were fueled a bit differently and if so, why. Rosberg was quick right through the weekend, and may well have been in front of Lewis anyway had their cars been the same weight.
    Still, great to see Mercedes competing at the front.

    1. I dont think their fuel loads where different, i think Hamiltons pace was just quicker through the race, he was pushing the Redbulls, Rosberg wasnt, you could hear from his onboards that he was lift before braking zones quite early in the race.

      If you wanna drive that way thats fine, but if the team have a pre-arranged agreement that whoever is leading by x laps in the race gets to keep that position, then Rosberg cant blame anyone.

      It was Hamilton who pushed the Redbulls today, thats why we all watch isnt it? not to see drivers fuel save from lap 5 and coast around.

      1. Rosberg was consistently quicker than Hamilton the entire race. Hamilton benefited greatly by being pitted first in each stint. Hamilton may have pushed the Redbulls but Rosberg could have beat them if Mercedes had swapped the cars mid-race when it was clear Rosberg was the quicker car

        1. No he wasnt ‘consistently quicker’ than Hamilton the entire race

          “Hamilton benefited greatly by being pitted first in each stint.”

          Poor Rosberg that his new teammate out qualified him and was beating him in race conditions an therefore gets first pit stop shout…

          Rosberg was sat at around 5 seconds behind Lewis for the first 3rd, while Hamilton was right up on the Redbulls gearbox trying _make something happen_.

          1. At the end of lap 10 after the start, intermediates and change to slicks had all shook out Rosberg was 4.447 seconds behind Hamilton. By the end of lap 20 before the 2nd pitstops started he had cut that to 1.458 seconds.

            In order to gain 3 seconds you generally have to be faster which is why in from lap 10-20 nico was faster in 9 of them.

            Oh and for the record the closest Hamilton got to a Redbull gearbox over those laps was 2.5 seconds so he wasnt being held up

          2. “At the end of lap 10 after the start, intermediates and change to slicks had all shook out Rosberg was 4.447 seconds behind Hamilton”

            It was estimated Hamilton lost around 5-6 seconds after entering the Mclaren pit stop. So make that ~10 seconds on pace.

            “In order to gain 3 seconds you generally have to be faster which is why in from lap 10-20 nico was faster in 9 of them.”

            Yeah, you can be a fraction of a second quicker per lap when your sat seconds behind someone in clean air, trundling along. Ala Button-style.

          3. @N

            Hamilton’s pit lane time for his stop on lap 7 was 24.9 against Rosbergs of 22.1 so he lost 2.8 seconds all of which he gained back by having the benefit of changing onto slicks at the optimum time.

            Dont go listening to ted kravitz and his 5-6 second estimate

          4. It’s still 6+ seconds Hamilton was infront of Rosberg who was ‘consisently quicker the entire race’..

            It was not obvious at all ‘half way through the race’ that Rosberg was quicker, there was even a point about half way through the race where Hamilton had the pace to get the jump on Vettel..

            Rosberg couldnt even make his passes stick with Hamilton with just 10 laps to go in the race when he tried to pass him like 3 times, Hamilton still had the pace to re-take the positions on the pit-straight, it was only about 5 laps to go in the race where it became obvious that Hamiltons fuel was far too marginal to keep the pace, by which time Rosberg was never going to catch Webber.

          5. @N

            Well its not a 6+ gap on pace because over the first 3 laps Rosberg had to pass button and Massa and also started further down the grid. by the time he had passed those 2 he was already 3.2 seconds behind he then went faster than Hamilton on laps 4, 5, 6 and was going quicker on lap 7 when Hamilton was pitted for slicks. Even with his mistake the benefit of changing to slicks a lap earlier than Rosberg cancelled it out and he was even able to extend the gap such was the cost to Rosberg of doing an extra lap on intermediates

            To highlight the cost of that extra lap Rosberg did he set a 155.8 on lap 7 on intermediates, on lap 8 now on slicks Bianchi did a 1.51.5….Over 4 seconds quicker in a Marrusia. The other thing that highlights the cost of that lap is that before the stop for slicks Rosberg was over 10 seconds ahead of button and after less than 5, given that button stopped on the same lap as Hamilton the advantage gained is obvious to see.

            Finally in the 40 laps before the final pitstops after which Hamilton held Rosberg up the split of faster laptimes was 28-12 in Rosbergs favour

            As i said Rosberg was consistently faster and the laptimes prove it

  24. Team orders are allowed. Drivers have to accept it and spectators have to deal with it.

    That being said, we can see how the drivers handle those orders. We have Hamilton and Rosberg handling it like mature team players. On the other side is Webber and Vettel (with Red Bull) handling it unbecoming of 3 time Constructor and Driver champions.

  25. If Hamilton honestly thinks that Rosberg should be on the podium, then he should’ve slowed down to let him through…

  26. the thing is roseburg wanted to pass hamilton and chase the redbull pair. the team knew they had underfueled both cars.. so such a chase could have ended in grief for roseburg and team loosing valuable points by him not finshing the race somewhat. i think the team was right to demand he cools down.perfect sense from brawn.

  27. My problem with the Hamilton/Rosberg situation is not so much what happened over the final stint but more that the whole race was manufactured to keep Hamilton ahead of Rosberg and when you add up all the numbers Mercedes cost Rosberg a genuine shot at winning the race today.

    Let me explain

    After the start, intermediate period and change to slicks Rosberg was 4.4 seconds behind Hamilton at the end of lap 9(having lost 2 seconds to Hamilton during the change to slicks) Over the next stint he closed that gap to 1.4 seconds before Hamilton pitted again and Rosberg the next lap, despite a net gain on Hamilton of 3 tenths over the in/out laps Hamilton switch a lap earlier blew the gap out from 1.4 to 3.4 seconds between the Mercs such is the beneifit of new rubber.

    Again Over the next stint Rosberg closed the gap from 3.4 to less than a second when Mercedes again pitted Hamilton 1 lap before Rosberg. Again despite having in/out laps that balanced Rosberg emerged from the stops from less than a second behind Hamilton to once again over 3 seconds behind.

    Once again Rosberg slowly cut into that gap and by the time of the final stops was sitting on Hamiltons gearbox around 0.7 seconds behind however Mercedes again pitted Hamilton a lap before Rosberg. This time Rosberg was considerably quicker than Hamilton over the in/out laps and emerged in exactly the same position on Hamiltons tail. From here he was condemed to remain their despite looking considerably quicker.

    In essenece pitting Rosberg a lap later in every stint cost him around 8 seconds on the track, if we consider that Rosberg lost at least 6-8 seconds behind Hamilton in the final stint that’s 14-16 seconds Mercedes strategy cost Rosberg and given he was only 12 seconds behind Vettel at the finish he clearly had the speed today to win if allowed to unleash it. instead it seems Mercedes did what was needed to keep Hamilton happy.

    Now of course its never that simple, Hamilton had qualified ahead and had track position and so its understandable that he got the optimum time to stop over the first 2 stints but having closed up on Hamilton over the first 2 dry stints it was clear Rosberg had the edge and so Mercedes should have recognised and took advantage of this. Had Mercedes pitted Rosberg first during the 3rd pitstops he would have jumped Hamilton(possibly vettel) and been less that 4 seconds behind the bull(s) and been in position to attack during the 4th stops and mount a challenge for the race win.

    Cant say im surprised though, having followed mercedes over he last 4 years iv grown used to James Vowles being unable to adapt a strategy on the go.

    1. If you theory is correct. Why did he not pass vettel when vettel was behind hamilton?

      It is all good to speculate after the race but roberg passed hamilton more than once and each time Hamilton re-took the place.

      If he was that fast, Hamilton would never have re-taken the place. If he cannot pass hamilton and make it stick, how exactly did you expect him to pass the redbull?

      1. @John Well

        When the cars were running Hamilton, Vettel, Rosberg between laps 33 and laps 38 Rosberg would have been unable to pass Vettel for 2 reason. One is that during those laps they came across 4 lapped cars which mixed things up a little and didnt quite work as favourably for Rosberg and secondly when he did have DRS behind Vettel invariably Vettel also had it behind Hamilton.

        Had Rosberg been able to get by Hamilton and chase the Redbulls i suspect DRS would have been enough to do the job.

        As for Rosbergs passes on Hamilton and then the re-passes well that is the crux of double DRS zones, i suspect and this is just my own theory is that when Rosberg made those moves the fight was already called off and that they were a message to the team that he was faster. It makes no sense to pass in the first DRS zone to inevitably get re-passed in the next. His lack of defence when Hamilton re-passed each time made it look to me like he was yielding more than being re-passed

        1. At the end of the day he didn’t have to ask for permission. If he could he should have done it on the track. The proof is he tried and couldn’t make it stick. Then wanted the team to tell Hamilton to let him pass.

          What most people are forgetting here is that Hamilton wasn’t slow, the team asked him to slow down to conserve fuel with the guaranty that Nico won’t attack him. Now how do you expect to then tell him to let Nico pass after that.

          For Nico to go and complain about that does not make any sense as both were told to conserve fuel. He has the first 40 laps to pass his teammate before the last stop. Same happened with Button and it ended without so much noise. How is this different?

        2. It makes no sense to pass in the first DRS zone to inevitably get re-passed in the next. His lack of defence when Hamilton re-passed each time made it look to me like he was yielding more than being re-passed

          @pantherjag Great job breaking down the competitive of Rosberg in these posts. It’s an interesting point you make about Rosberg yielding in the second DRS zones. I suspected the same thing when watching it. Perhaps Rosberg was just posturing to demonstrate that he could easily pass Hamilton in the DRS zones if he wanted to.

  28. As for Lewis’ pit-stop error, i think it did cost him 2nd place.

    (sidenote: would be triple LOL if the McLaren mechanics actually did have a memory trip as well forgetting he is no longer McLaren’s and help change his tires )

    1. Sidenote is funny but wouldn’t have happened due to the different livery. The team may also not have 100% known it was Hamilton at that point in time.

  29. Michael Brown (@)
    24th March 2013, 13:25

    I think Nico was justified in his complaining, as Di Resta was in Australia. Although Nico complained a little too much, it reeked of favouring Hamilton. Rosberg was forced to run at the pace of Hamilton, who was saving fuel and having to conserve the tires. If Rosberg passed Hamilton, it still would have been Mercedes 3rd and 4th, as with Red Bull who finished 1st and 2nd. And I think that’s the most important part.

  30. The bottom line for me people is that team principles are there to run the team. Just like coaches on a football field. If you do not obey what the coach says then you are no good for the team. F1 is a team sport even though there are on 2 drivers each driver is supported by 100 to 200 people. The team needs to take precedence over any ambition any driver should have. The team is what pays the driver to drive. That is what they are drivers, nothing more and nothing less.

    We need to understand this in the sport of F1 and not make out that the drivers are the ones that make the sport go round. The people that make the sport go round are the engineers, the team owners that invest millions of their hard earned money and the fans who pay good money enable the sport to happen. The drivers are merely 1 piece of the puzzle and they should know their place in the team…

    Well done Nico, you will get your day… Great drive and great team player. I believe that Mercedes are inline for the constructors this year purely because of their team ethic.

  31. Whether team orders are banned or not, they will always happen – just more or less obviously. I look fondly back on the memories of 03′ where BMW Williams allowed Montoya and R. Schumacher just to race until only one of them was a chance of winning the drivers’ championship.
    That said, it seems to be the assumption that Nico had significantly more fuel than Lewis; I’m not sure of that. Also, Nico did get past Lewis leading into the hairpin to go onto the main straight, only to be repassed under the second DRS zone immediately after. Strange tactical move by Nico to make the move there. If Nico had made that move stick, who is to say the team wouldn’t have done the same and told Lewis to hold 4th. Perhaps the team told Nico to give back the position, I didn’t hear any team radio on that though.
    Ultimately, I think Nico had chances to get past Hamilton and when he couldn’t make the move stick the team had to make a call at some point given the fuel situation and the fact RB were 10secs down the road, to get both cars to the end and secure the points. Rather than have both drivers fight it out to the end and risk running out of fuel, or not have enough to provide a sample at the end when the net result of points for the team could not have increased.

    1. This. Rosberg made 2 passes towards the end on Hamilton at the hairpin, but Hamilton would retake position along the front straight. So, they were given the license to race, but since Rosberg couldn’t make a pass stick, Ross Brawn decided to intervene and ask them to hold station to avoid and untoward incident.

  32. The team scored 27 points today, the most on a single weekend since the Silver Arrows returned to Formula One in 2010. So only in the second race Mercedes is doing better than the previous 3 years. I am sure Lewis and Nico will take Mercedes forward. Good job both of them.

    1. Well said, Iam sure Ross knows what Hes doing…

      The pair of them could of raced themselves into running out of fuel, an Ross is a master of the long game…Look at the possible mayhem in the RedBull camp when you get it wrong.

  33. Strange that Mercedes appear to have already picked their #1 driver so early in the season. So far Rosberg and Hamilton have been very close and should have let Rosberg overtake if he had the speed. But credit to rosberg for obeying the instructions unlike vettel.

  34. Well it’s easy. He should have just waved him past and then he would have been on the podium. I’m sick of this drivel and blunt lies that they are spewing.
    Do they really think people are that dumb or blind?

    You either let him through or you tell the press that podium belongs to you.

    Anything else is just a waste of breath.

  35. Hamilton is a bit harsh on hisself here. I mean: he was constantly putting pressure on the bulls by setting fastest laps but then he got caught by the tyres. He also splitted them so I think overall his pace was better than Nico’s. The team had to make a call after Nico failed to overtake and they did

    1. Shall I say “+1”? Is that still a thing? Anyway, Hamilton was being very gracious. He out qualified Nico and stayed ahead of him until the team told him to back off. Nico was not quicker “all day.” 27 pionts is mighty heap of loot for that team and Brawn was well within his rights to shut down any kind of passy passy stuff before it got ugly. Nico had no chance of running down the RBRs and form the team’s point of view it didnt matter which one came home first. Nico needs to think about out qualifying Hamilton if he wants the shoe to be on the other foot.

  36. I think that the whole team handled the situation very well. I am very proud of the entire team. The team agreed that the race between teammates end at the last pit stop. If Roseburg was faster than Hamilton, he should have passed on one of the pit stops–He stopped a lap after Hamilton on every pit stop, so he could have pulled off a fast lap to get ahead. Even when Hamilton lost precious time be entering the wrong pit and gave up a position to Red Bull, Roseburg didn’t get ahead. So obviously Hamilton was in fuel/car saving mode and the correct thing to do was to hold his place. I am happy with Ross Braun how he handled the situation. Roseburg needs more points for the WDC, but he doesn’t need to take points off Hamilton, he needs to take them off other teams. What would happen if he was allowed to pass and Hamilton then looses the championship by 1 point. The point could be made for the reverse but right Hamilton has been ahead so far this season and looks like a better bet to finish ahead. As Hamilton says, he needs to work harder to beat his teammate, Roseburg needs to do the same. I like the way Hamilton was magnanimous in his comments, and also Roseburg’s response. I see no reason for all the criticism here.

    1. I knew it!
      Those Roseburg and Braun must be the puppet masters who are pulling the strings from Stuttgart. I wish they’d leave Hamilton, Rosberg and Brawn to go on about their jobs in peace.

  37. Don’t feel sorry for Rosberg at all. When he had the chance he couldn’t make the pass, so when the end came and his teammate was in trouble he had to stay behind. If he completed the pass none of this would have happened.

  38. Good for Hamilton for his words! He is a great racer and a great sportman. Good for Rosberg also, another great soportsman and racer.

  39. I thought Hamilton and Rosberg handled a difficult situation with more tact than Brawn could muster, but everyone slagging off Ross, and then slagging Hammy and slagging Nico…come on, if you want a real situation to sink your teeth into, just look at the evil and reprehensible Vettel!

  40. Nico tried a couple of times to pass Lewis and failed.
    He never threatened the Redbulls like Lewis did. He was also out-qualified.
    Lewis is mad to say Nico deserved the podium more!

  41. I don’t really see where the problem is, it seems that the team let Rosberg try to pass, Hamilton re passed him. The team saw that this fighting might kill the tyres and they both might end up 9th and 10th, yeah they were 15 seconds ahead of the next guy, but last year Kimi lost almost 10 positions in one lap, so when the tyres go they go so the team had to make a decision. Much like Christian Horner was trying to do at RedBull. Had Rosberg made the overtake stick the team would not have instructed him to move over. Anyway I feel Rosbergs chance went when he didn’t jump Lewis at the pits, Lewis was coasting for a lot longer but Rosberg, I guess because he was struggling with the Harder tyre, couldn’t bridge the gap and pass before the pits, that would have been the best way to pass. Anyway what happens in the reverse situation will prove their characters. Will Lewis hold position when his told to do so, will he be told to do so in the first place, we’ll wait and see.

    As for blaming Ross, I think thats pretty unfair, Ross has bosses who from whats been around want to get rid of him. So its very much unlikely that he anything he says is his decision. Much like Martin was handcuffed by Ron Dennis at McLaren, it seems Ross is handcuffed by Toto, and Lauda, after all its them who made Lewis signing.

    1. @Manu

      In every stop Mercedes pitted Hamilton first which is worth around 2-3 seconds at the beginning of each stint. During every stint Rosberg closed the gap to Hamilton only to lose all the hard work by being pitted second.

      1. He did indeed, however for the third stop, he dropped back a bit after putting the hard tyre on. I’m assuming the hard tyre didn’t work as well for him, he (Rosberg) was very close to Vettel but then started dropping back so was not able to challenge at the next round of pit stops.

  42. There’s a lot being made by people on here about Rosbergs being unable to make a pass stick and therefore he had his chance but couldnt take it. However on closer examination of the “passes” and “re-passes” something doesnt quite ring true.

    Firstly rosberg passing hamilton into the hairpin makes little sense as it would be obvious that hamilton would just DRS him down the main straight. Even if the first attempt had been on impulse surely rosberg would have learned his lesson and on the second attempt just used the first straight to close up and made the pass on the main straight.

    What i think was really going on was staged passes and re-passes in order to give hamilton DRS which would perhaps allow him to coast even longer down the main straight with the reduced drag and hence save fuel.

    The big giveaway is Hamiltons 2 re-passes both of which he completes before the start finish line around a 3rd of the way down the main straight especially the second one in which he re-passes quite a bit before the line. Even with DRS theres no way he would be able to pass him that soon down the straight if they were racing. I suspect the mercs were playing slingshots down the straights rather than racing.

    Other little clues also give the game away. Rosbergs laptimes on the laps in question were around 6-7 tenths slower, consistent with not giving it full beans on the main straight to allow hamilton to re-pass, Ross Brawn makes no mention of the overtakes when trying to talk nico down. I havent seen any comment from either driver in reference to the “battle” which i suspect is because there was no battle.

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