‘Racing drivers will never be friends’, claims Wolff

F1 Fanatic Round-up

Posted on

| Written by

In the round-up: Toto Wolff says that the relationship between Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg will never amount to true friendship due to the nature of their profession.


Your daily digest of F1 news, views, features and more.

Mercedes says Hamilton and Rosberg needn’t be friends (Autosport)

Wolff: “Racing drivers will never be friends because this is not going to the weekends doing a little bit of fun racing. This is their job and this is a very competitive environment. Everything that has been said about the great friendship is probably a nice story but it isn’t actually how it is in reality.”

Hamilton braced for difficult Canadian GP after losing track position again (Sky)

Hamilton: “Of course being second and not doing as good a job in qualifying makes it harder but I’ve recently had a good discussion with the strategy guys and there are opportunities. For me, it’s really important to understand them before I go into the race and even more than I have understood them in the past.”

Exclusive Eric Boullier Q&A: McLaren recovery will take time (Formula1.com)

Boullier: “I tell all at McLaren: yes we are a super team – one of the most successful teams in F1 history – but we are not today. We should also look at others and analyse why they are successful – and look at ourselves asking if we do everything necessary.”

VIDEO: Gene Haas talks exclusively to NBCSN about his new F1 team (NBC)

“After successfully winning the race to get a new Formula 1 team on the grid in the near future, Gene Haas spoke exclusively to NBCSN’s Leigh Diffey today in Montreal about his plans for Haas Formula in 2016.”

Canadian Grand Prix is part of Montreal’s ‘DNA,’ Mayor Coderre says in announcing 10-year deal (Montreal Gazette)

“The city will be putting $12.4 million toward the 10-year deal, but will be responsible for major improvements to the facilities at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, which could cost an additional $32 million, Coderre said.”

Monaco has reignited Formula 1 fire in Booth (Yorkshire Post)

Booth: “I actually flew back home on the Sunday so had to just restrict myself to one or two glasses on the plane. Even the mechanics and the staff couldn’t party that hard because they were all packing the garage and the motorhome away until 1am.”


Comment of the day

After a thrilling qualifying session yesterday, @xjr15jaaag is looking forward to what will hopefully turn out to be an equally exciting race.

I reckon this is going to be a great race; You will have an epic battle for the lead between the 2 Mercedes cars, and then a monumental battle for 3rd between Vettel, Ricciardo, Bottas, Massa and Alonso.
Further down the field, I am anticipating the Marussias getting stuck in with the Saubers, and then a scrap between the Force Indias, Kimi, Grosjean and the Toro Rossos for the lower reaches of the top 10.

From the forum

Happy birthday!

No F1 Fanatic birthdays today

If you want a birthday shout-out tell us when yours is via the contact form or adding to the list here.

On this day in F1

Ludovico Scarfiotti died on this day in 1968 while practicing for a hillclimbing event in Germany.

Although the Turinese driver never competed in a full season of Formula One, he remains the last Italian to have won the Italian Grand Prix driving a Ferrari, which he did in 1966, driving a V12-engined 312.

Author information

Will Wood
Will has been a RaceFans contributor since 2012 during which time he has covered F1 test sessions, launch events and interviewed drivers. He mainly...

Got a potential story, tip or enquiry? Find out more about RaceFans and contact us here.

29 comments on “‘Racing drivers will never be friends’, claims Wolff”

  1. Alonso and Webber were pretty much friends. Sutil and Hamilton too, until Sutil lost it. Alonso also seems to be friends with Bianchi, though they are on the same team.

    1. @austus until Sutil lost it?

      1. Tom (@newdecade)
        8th June 2014, 5:38

        Until Sutil attacked someone with broken glass and expected his friend to cover for him

        1. Which is what friends do. And it was Hamilton who lost it when he didn’t even come to court despite Sutil’s many requests. That’s the kind of person Hamilton is. Even he admitted that their broken friendship is his fault in early 2013.

          1. Karthik Mohan
            8th June 2014, 11:34

            So you think Lewis should have gone to the court and lied about sutil attacking Eric Lux, because that is what friends do? Sutil was guilty. How would it have looked for Hamilton to have lied in the court of law? Sutil made the mistake, he should pay the price without expecting others to lose their honour.

          2. Geez, I can’t believe people still hold that against Hamilton. For heaven’s sake, people take the other guy’s side against Hamilton even when the other guy was convicted of a serious crime. Can you not see how crazy that is? Ever consider that he was trying to do the best he could under the circumstances: I.e. Had nothing helpful to say about Sutil, wouldn’t perjure himself, so just stayed away as the best response in a bad situation ?

    2. Alonso played cars with Fisichella and Trulli, aswell. They got along well.

      So does Kimi and Vettel. They play squash together, I believe? (Kimi said something about it on Top Gear).

      But none of them actually competed together in the same team. Well, Alonso did with Fisico and Trulli, but with Fisico he pretty much had him controlled and with Jarno, once it was getting uncomfortable back in 2004, Flavio just fired him.

    3. Schumacher and Verstappen used to be friends, but admitted they never talked about F1 on holidays and of course never fought for the same positions anyway.

  2. OmarR-Pepper (@)
    8th June 2014, 2:21

    Funny Susie… lovely accent

  3. Totally understandable that Haas wouldn’t discount the possibility of Danica Patrick being one of his F1 drivers. She already works for him after all, and would create quite the buzz and (sponsor) interest. But while she does have a fairly extensive racing CV, she has never really delivered the goods. In the many series she has competed in since 1998 (according to her Wiki bio), she has managed to get a few fastest laps, a few pole positions, one win, and zero championships. I have nothing against the lady personally, but as a 32 year old mediocre race car driver with precious few trophies to show for her efforts, I’m certain that she is only where she is today because of her marketing power. Good for her, but she definitely has no business being lined up on an F1 grid. Haas has a huge challenge in front of him, and I’d doubt that his future driver lineup is very high on the to-do list at the moment. If the media care to speculate on Danica, he’s probably fine with it.

    1. She’s also said repeatedly that she’s not interested in racing in F1.

      Like every driver she’s said she’d like to get to drive an f1 car in a test but as i say she’s said a couple times the past few years that she’s no interest in racing in F1.

      The only people in Motorsport who keep linking her to an F1 drive are those trying to gain attention since mentioning her always gets you in the media.

    2. She […] would create quite the buzz and (sponsor) interest.

      I’m not too sure, to be honest. US advertisers strongly link her to GoDaddy.com (as she has appeared on TV in their commercials and has been sponsored by them in both Indycar and NASCAR) and they have no presence outside of North America. On top of that, while some sponsors might see the potential of a female F1 driver, it’d still be hard for new companies to enter F1, as there is no guarantee she’ll last longer than a year, will do well or there will be any female drivers to follow up on her. Then there’s the audience; leaving products aimed at women to be an unlikely sponsor as well.

      If you look at female drivers in lower European categories, they often don’t have that much more sponsors than their male counterparts or anything spectacular. I don’t think Danica in F1 would get multinationals behind her more so than current F1 drivers do. However, a young female driver entering F1 at a team that tends to stick to its drivers (Sauber, Force India, Williams) and a European background would be more likely to attract new sponsors. At least, that’s my hypothesis.

  4. iAltair (@)
    8th June 2014, 6:56

    Vettel and Raikkonen are friends.
    Vettel and Ricciardo are friends.

    So Toto, what is your claim?

    1. Being on the same team makes it alot harder though. So VET and RAI isn’t comparable. VET and RIC work well together now, being all friendly.. but as soon as they’ll get a winning car, fighting for the championship, their friendship will be put aside and they’ll do everything to beat eachother on track. Vettel and Webber were never great buddy’s, but respected each other and were apparently very good team mates as in developing and setting up the car. But after the final race in 2010, every time they had the best car, it put a strain on their relationship and things went sour. It’s fully normal, and I agree with Toto that HAM and ROS don’t need to be friends to make it work on track.

    2. Also RAI and VET are just people who prefer each other above other drivers, they would enver ‘hang out’ like for example Webber and Alonso did.

  5. Am afraid, Toto wont manage his drivers s he seems to show an inclination to ROS, ……..He keeps changing goal posts every time he is in the media; but I like the competitiveness already as a Ham fan; one way you know you are better is when you have many haters attacking all the time when your teammate takes pole by 0.07 seconds at canada and kangaroos into the mirabeau at monaco. Today’s race will be an to watch!

  6. Put the best of friends in a championship winning car & team, there would be rivalry. Racing drivers on track are not friends. Alonso and Webber had good racing on track, so did Michael & Ralf Schumacher brothers.

    1. I think its about boundaries. In my country we have a saying “Friends are friends, business aside”.

  7. Jenson and Lewis withstood 3 years of being in a big team without putting their hands at each others throats. And they did fight for WC in 2010, and were in the reckoning (atleast LH was) up until Vettel took Alonso head on.
    Don’t see where Toto gets this idea from.

    1. No your right, Hamilton never posted telemetry data of Jenson on twitter and never complained about that Jenson unfollowed him on twiiter, while Jenson didn’t had a twitter account to begin with.

      1. Quinn (@quinnolabar)
        8th June 2014, 18:18


    2. I don’t remember anyone calling Jenson and Lewis “friends” though, colleagues and team mates is a different thing than friends

    3. You are*
      When was the last time we saw two competitive team mates keeping their relationship intact? Not since 2007.
      Yes, LH’s “twitter problems” did arise, but it was also partly induced by him losing faith in McLaren. As much as I remember, their relationship didnt suffer a breakdown in 2010 or 2011, despite it hitting a low in late ’12.
      Morever, Jenson did have twitter, he didn’t follow his team mate in the first place.

      1. Daniel (@collettdumbletonhall)
        8th June 2014, 13:41

        Nor did Lewis follow him.
        I could never really understand all of that. Mclaren tried to imply that they were great mates yet neither even followed each other on Twitter. I also didn’t get Hamilton complaining that Jenson unfollowed when Lewis had never even followed his team-mate in the first place either.
        Judging by the press conference on thursday they seem to get on just fine though.

  8. I say it depends, but what Toto days makes sense. With some exceptions, i think that what they want is to win, of course some have a friend relation, others just collegues, but in the end, what matters is the result.
    Take for example Maldonado, all of them have been hit by him and still talk to him, if thats not friendship i don’t know what it is…(Joking :D)

  9. Toto Wolff worries me sometimes. It appears to me personally that he and Niki Lauda inherited a great team from Ross Brawn and others (and had their own contributions, or course) but seem to be less in control than Ross. Maybe it’s the different approach to the media, but I really don’t understand why Toto thinks he’s doing any good by joining the speculation about the Hamilton and Rosberg relationship instead of trying to put it to a rest.

    If anything, he is speculating about human relationships in general to rationalize what’s going on in his team, towards the media. I might not be a big fan of Mercedes (they had me at signing Schumacher) but I really don’t know what to make of Toto’s little chats to the press sometimes.

  10. Grosjean’s tweet shows him with all four wheels out of the track. Kimi did the same thing, and I’m sure they were not the only ones. Wasn’t this supposed to be penalised?

    1. @mc4ren grosjean is clearly on the white lines with at least one wheel though…

      But I agree with your sentiment anyways, I didn’t like this “case by case” regulation they put in place for the ‘off track racing’… I get that you need run offs because of safety, but IMO there should be a strip of sand/gravel next to the track and THEN a run off area… I’m all too tired of watching cars slip a bit and it’s fine, they just rejoin as if nothing happened (or the straight up abuse we often see especially in quali)

    2. Only when a crash is avoided this way apparently(Grosjean in Hungary last year)

Comments are closed.