Hamilton tipped for new five-year Mercedes contract

F1 Fanatic Round-up

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In the round-up: Lewis Hamilton is tipped to sign an extended five-year contract with Mercedes following his championship triumph.


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Hamilton to become GB’s richest ever sports star (The Telegraph)

“Hamilton’s latest championship triumph is poised to net him a new £100 million, five-year contract with Mercedes, cementing his status as the UK’s most wealthy active athlete.”

Red Bull: Others pushing wing limits (Autosport)

Christian Horner: “We have taken things to the extreme in a particular area. They [the FIA] are focusing on one element of the front wing, which is the upper element, whereas others are taking advantage of other areas.”

F1 Bosses Get $120 Million Stake In The Sport Sooner Than Expected (Forbes)

“Delta Topco’s latest shareholder filing, dated 1 January 2014 and visible below, shows that the FIA has 45,819,734 ordinary shares out of a total of 4,286,181,944 giving it a 1.06% stake.”

Manager: Schumacher ‘making progress’ but faces long recovery (Fox Sports)

“Schumacher’s manager, Sabine Kehm, tells German TV station RTL that the seven-time champion is ‘making progress considering the severity of his injury’ and ‘you have to give it time. I think you really just have to have patience’.”

Lauda sees another Mercedes duel in 2015 (Reuters)

“I never liked (Alain) Prost, I never liked (Clay) Regazzoni, I never liked (John) Watson when it came down to racing, so this is normal. But there is a certain respect of each other.”

Lewis Hamilton’s lack of popularity: is it cos he is black? (The Guardian)

“Ultimately, Lewis deserves recognition because his success goes far beyond sport itself. But if he never gains national acceptance through the sports personality vote, it will say more about Britain than about him.”

Finding the elusive right balance (The Way It Is)

“Are any of the ruling bureaucracies of the sport’s major categories – F1, IndyCars, WEC, TUSC, NASCAR, et. al. – likely to find the right solutions to a festering nest of technical and commercial problems?”

Good Morning Wales (BBC Radio Wales)

An interview I did for BBC Radio Wales yesterday on Hamilton, Rosberg, double points and F1’s cost crisis (five minutes after waking from a four-hour sleep, which is why I sound dead).




Comment of the day

How concerned should fans of Ferrari – and Sebastian Vettel – be about their second change of team principal in seven months?

It seems like the continuous manager sackings of the early 1990s are beginning to rule their scene again. So sad how that 2006 team came to this. Bit by bit, it crumbled.

Vettel indeed has a mountain to climb – Schumacher at least had Jean Todt appointed way earlier than when he came and the team was on an upward trend for three years by 1996. Vettel joins a train which is still accelerating down a steep slope.

From the forum

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Matt Aitch, Sozavele and Swapnil Aman!

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

Five years ago today Michael Schumacher’s F1 comeback had not yet been confirmed but his appearance at the SKUSA SuperNationals XIII kart race – where he beat the likes of Sebastien Buemi and Nelson Piquet Jnr – showed he was still keen to compete:

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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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128 comments on “Hamilton tipped for new five-year Mercedes contract”

  1. I don’t understand the Telegraph article. There are many reasons why people don’t like Hamilton, cherry-picking his race as the sole reason while dismissing other valid reasons (some may not like his personality – a completely subjective opinion of the man formed through how he presents himself to the media, or his driving style, to name two). It doesn’t add up. The public hasn’t taken to him as they have other British drivers, so automatically it’s due to race? I give people more credit than that and believe that people who don’t like him due to his race are a small minority.

    He’s double world champion, off the back of a dominant season and is poised to have a period of dominance to rival Vettel. The British media should be celebrating his tangible on track achievements and not making wild assumptions on the intangible reasons why people may not like him.

    1. *Guardian

      It’s the worst article I’ve read in a while. The Guardian seems to have taken an agenda on this and run with it.

      1. the BIG thing about hamilton’s perceived unpopularity is this. english sportsfans do not like winners. he is resolutely a winner, not often an underdog and rarely the plucky loser (mansell, hill, button).

        the best comparison is not mo farah or the williams sisters. it is andy murray – a ruthless, committed sports man (not a sports personality) who cares far more about winning and fighting than he does about his media representation.

        murray and hamilton do not fit the mould that the press likes to put them in. they are both hugely popular internationally but because the british press cannot pigeonhole them, they treat them like the awkward kids at school who no one could play with.

        i believe that hamilton’s race plays a big part in this but the overriding factor is the media.

        1. Murray is actually quite shy and somewhat taciturn. So he’s never going to be brilliant in the media. Also, when he does say stuff (wanting England to lose the football, admitting to vote for Scottish independence) he gets a load of flak. Damned if you do, damned if you don’t.

          You would have thought that Hamilton would be a media darling. He’s gone from absolutely nowhere, with his family sacrificing everything to get him to where he is. He’s extraordinarily talented, supremely fast and entertaining and is the best overtaker by far. Oh, and he’s British. I don’t think he’s as good as Alonso, but Hamilton is an quite incredible driver.

          Having said all that, he is rather temperamental and wears his heart on his sleeve a lot. Perhaps that goes agains the traditional “stiff upper lip” thing that British people are supposed to adhere to and which the blue rinse brigade that read the Daily Fail or Daily Depress like. He also has a pop-star girlfriend, earrings, tattoos, mentions God a bit and doesn’t speak using Received Pronunciation. Maybe that unnerves certain elements of the press, who would prefer someone a bit more “conventional” (personality-free).

          As for the Guardian, most of their coverage – especially articles written by Paul Weaver – are overwhelmingly Hamilton-centric, almost to the exclusion of every other driver out there. Sometimes I read an article of his and I have to remember whether there are other drivers in the sport: you only see Lewis’s competitors listed in the race results bit. You’re probably more likely to see negative articles about Lewis in the other papers.

    2. I’m pretty sure Hamilton is the most popular driver on F1.
      I’m from Brazil and he is easily the one with most supporters.
      Massa comes in second with less than half his share.

      I know there’s people who doesn’t like him cuz of his rapper manners and clothes. I personally don’t care about that and don’t care about him outside of a garage or a F1 car. The guy is mainly a driver, not a celebrity. If he is good in what he does, that’s enough for me.

      1. I’m not from Brazil. I’ve been there more than once and I was at the Brazilian GP in 2011 and Lewis was probably the most popular driver, second only to Massa (who curiously had lots of people who disliked him).

        But there are people who don’t like Lewis for a number of reasons, his race is one of these reasons. However, IMHO, it’s a minority.

    3. As you can sense in my broken english, I´m not english, so I can appreciate what really matters in that article: the readers comments.

      It shows some bile against Hamilton, but some true love too. So the intense debate goes really beyond Hamilton and touches the way english people/fans perceive their idols.

      To give you some perepctive, I can guarantee to you that, with all his flaws – as every human being – Lewis would be the second coming here in Brazil, he would be God.

      So, if english people don´t bother and don´t really care about Lewis, we would be really, really happy to adopt him.


      1. Your command of English is better than that of many native speakers. :)

    4. @colossal-squid The article has flaws, but I liked it because it raises a question that barely gets discussed in Europe. Believe me, I’m black, I hold an European passport, I’ve spend roughly half my life there and racism is real. It’s better today than it was 10 years ago and probably will be better tomorrow but it’s still there. We overcome prejudice talking about it not hiding it.

      I follow F1 since I was a little kid (I’m 30 now), I’ve been to races before Lewis Hamilton and after Lewis Hamilton (my first GP in loco I was 11 at Estoril, 1995) and what Lewis’s done is a revolution for many people, like the article mentions: “Tiger Woodish stuff”.

      Most people, regardless of race, like Lewis for his driving but I know many people who love him because he’s black and I’m certain there are those who don’t like him because he’s black…are they meaningful? Probably not.

      1. @jcost I always thought you might be Portuguese, given the name (J. Costa?) and knowledge of Portuguese drivers the other day. But, until now, I thought the Mario image was representative! Of course, it still might be for something less banal than skin colour :) i.e. personality!

        1. @fastiesty you’re right, it’s “Costa”. I’m Angolan and Portuguese.

          I like to think I’m a bit Brazilian too :)

          1. @jcost Ah well, if it’s between Teixeira and Brazilian drivers, I know who I’d support! Maybe you could get a Sonangol sponsorship too..

          2. @fastiesty Teixeira is a waste of money. He holds an engineering degree, he should try another post in motorsports :).

            Angola’s biggest hope is GP3 driver (WSR bound) Luis Sa Silva, he will be 23 next year, I must impress in 2015 or forget his F1 dreams…

          3. @jcost Agreed. I didn’t realise Sa Silva was Angolan, as he races under a Macau racing licence, which makes me wonder how Teixeira did do, as apparently the FIA doesn’t recognise the Angolan Motorsports Federation for issuing Grade 1 licences.

            He’s actually 24 now (are you 23? :P), but is definitely worth pursuing over Teixeira, who has probably gone as far as he can go. I guess we all need to impress in 2015 to have an F1 dream! If Goddard can get a test, then I’m sure Sa Silva can next year..

      2. @jcost Just to be clear because I certainly didn’t mean to say otherwise, but I understand that unfortunately we live in a world where racism is unfortunately still a problem.

        I have a different perspective on the article than you. I think for such a hugely serious issue the article is a wasted opportunity. There’s room for (and a need for) a proper discussion on the problem of racism in all sports (particularly soccer in many European countries) and a look at F1 and a figure like Hamilton could be an important part of that. I think the article wastes that opportunity by being too dismissive of those who for whatever reason in his home country haven’t taken to him or actively dislike him. To me the article seems to skirt too close to saying “If you (or the public) dislike Hamilton, then you only dislike him due to the colour of his skin” and thereby undermines any kind of valid message or discussion it could have tried to build.

        There’s no denying that Hamilton has suffered due to racism in F1 (I remember the infamous Spanish fans) but I’m an optimist and would like to think that people are mostly good, and those who hate due to skin colour are a shrinking minority, which is the opposite of what the message in that article says and seems to take a darkly cynical view of the British public as a whole. It’s only one squid’s opinion and I’m not saying I’m 100% right in what I’m saying.

    5. Well said. This article makes no sense at all. Hamilton is easily, easily the most popular current F1 driver in Britain. Only Mansell is more popular, and even he has his detractors.

      If the British media aren’t gloating over their sporting winners, they’re hyping the chances of their prospective ones. Whenever they write about F1, they write about Hamilton practically exclusively. There was one excellent day where the BBC F1 page had every “main” article featuring Hamilton, or a picture of Hamilton. Farcical.

      While race is an issue wherever humans gather together, the simple fact is that in Britain people consider Lewis by some distance the wealthiest, most popular, most talked about, most well known, and the best driver they’ve produced in decades.

      He certainly has his detractors, but there are plenty of potential reasons why someone might dislike him other than race.

      1. You’ve touched on an important point for me – I think I don’t dislike Hamilton the person or the driver almost nearly as much as I dislike the constant media over-exposure Hamilton gets in the English speaking press! That might be true for a lot of people and unfortunately for him a lot of the dislike for him may be because of this.

        1. Yes but you also forget that the press mentions him a lot but not in very flattery ways.

          They always throw those negative hints there that actually don’t throw when they talk about others and i believe that is a reason some people not just dislike him but despise him actually.

          Also everything he says is twisted in a negative headline.
          A good example is the Red Bull thing. He was asked about Teams like Red Bull etc and he said that teams like that are don’t have the historical attraction or certainty because they aren’t living for F1 or motorsport. Basically nothing we don’t all know.
          He said “Red Bull is a drinking company” which is a statement of fact. The headline was big letters writing “Hamilton says Red Bull JUST a drinking company”. Noticed the “just” there? Basically making it like Hamilton was bad mouthing Red Bull.
          If that was Jenson Button they will have never twisted it like that.

          Every time the British newspapers write an article about him they try to throw the phrases “pop star girlfriend”, “owner of private jet plane”, “tax free Monaco heaven” etc.
          It clear why they do that. They try to make him seem like a spoiled rich guy with no human side. They never do that when writing about Button. They don’t try to throw the “model girlfriend” thing every time or that he lives in Monaco. They even write how a nice cool down to earth guy he is.

          They may make more articles about Hamilton but most of them are anything but favorable. They write about him because he brings clicks but they don’t like him.
          I don’t know about the British public but if i will have to speak about British media, i will say, YES they seem to be racist white ba-star-ds.

    6. I’ll tell you exactly why I don’t like him. He was lauded as the next big thing, one of the coming greats, challenge to the status quo, the next Shumacher or Senna… while I was knee-deep being an Alonso fan and a Ferrari fan.

      He had a childish attitude and he still does, at times. This year, I think, he’s matured dramatically. However, a petulant child being told he was going to challenge the greats of yesteryear? I am sufficiently pleased he’s only just now won his second WDC. He came in to one of the top teams outright, rather than up the field like Alonso and Vettel. He was handed glory on a silver platter.

      These are the reasons.

      His clothes and demeanor scream “LOOK AT ME! I AM SPECIAL! I AM UNIQUE!”

      These are the reasons.

      People hated on ‘the finger’ each time Vettel won but that’s just a signature style of exuberance. I always felt that Hamilton was smug in the quiet times after his victory celebrations died down.

      However — it happens. I followed NASCAR for decades and the same thing happened to Jeff Gordon as he came from the west coast “without NASCAR roots” in the ‘south’. He was clean cut and young and challenged Rusty Wallace and Dale Sr. Jeff Gordon became my favorite driver and he still he. But Jimmie Johnson came and I had a strong dislike for him even though he came from the same background and in the same team as Gordon.

      That may just be an American perspective: I’ve got my favorite, any challenger can suck it.

      1. Petulant? When? Childish? What’s that? All these vague, value-laden terms…

        And do you think he should have turned down the McLaren seat? How is that his fault?

        So I don’t think you have told us exactly why you don’t like him, tbh. He has plenty of real faults you could have used.

        I don’t see the relevance of Vettel’s finger either, though clearly it meant “No 1”. Unless it meant “there is only one, I am unique”. Which would be true, of course :)

        1. @lockup Each of those points are the reason. I never said it was a good reason on a moral or ethical ground but if you were confused you could have read the last line as it provided an alternative reason that anyone in sport should be familiar with.

          Yes, when Hamilton joined and up through snippets of this season he’s had a petulant and childish attitude. But how is that vague? Anyway…

          No, he should not have turned down the McLaren seat. But I’ll remind you he was treated as the Second Coming when he did arrive and he didn’t do or say anything to sway that opinion to normalcy. As I said, it wasn’t until this year — the last few races, to be exact — that Hamilton has shown that he is a grown man with regularity.

          Superstars join the top tiers either as children or they leave as children. Hamilton happens to have entered F1 with the mentality of a child, while Alonso looks to be leaving as one whenever he gets around to leaving.

          1. And to add: people like their sports teams or their individuals. When someone comes along to challenge them, fans may dislike the challenger. Others will crave a new regime the challenger will bring. It’s a cycle and Hamilton just isn’t my cup of tea since he had the rough year with Alonso and beat Massa.

          2. @neiana well I haven’t noticed any childish or petulant behaviour, so I’m none the wiser. In the absence of any specifics they sound rather generic I gotta say. He can be quite aggressive sometimes of course, but that term is maybe not really derogatory in the context of F1. Likewise ‘inconsistent’ and ‘contradictory’ are true but lack bite.

            For me the issue is illustrated by @Biggsy, who starts off satisfied with your words, but then has to add ‘whiny, manipulative and fake’. Maybe he thinks Lewis made up Nico’s cheating, is all I can think.

            Hamilton does not whine or do petulant. On the contrary he’s direct and open and confrontational, unless he’s being political like in Canada 2011 or Turkey 2010; after which incidents let me point out he was mature enough to maintain a good relationship with Jenson when many would have started a feud.

            So for me this an example of what the Guardian is talking about, and as I’ve said elsewhere it just seems to be, like so many things, about status: people use these vague pejorative terms to express their general dissatisfaction with his success.

      2. @neiana Sums up my feelings too.

      3. Accusing Hamilton of being childish makes me think, well, just how mature are the other drivers under pressure? Or even the team managers and owners?! But fair enough. Yet as soon as you mention clothes as an issue, my reading changes: you’re issue is suddenly cultural and, let’s say it, ethnic/racial. His clothes are normal for British footballers (‘soccer’) out on town, say, and I imagine much the same for many American footballers (the football played with hands mostly…) Are they screaming ‘look at me I’m special?’ No more than anyone else there age. But for Formula 1, Hamilton clearly does have a different style.

        I like Hamilton principally because of his racing. Much as I liked Montoya, or Mansell and Senna. But I also like the difference he makes to Formula 1 and his background (and not mainly his ethnicity however you classify it). It only worries me, as a fan of his racing, how much the other parts of his life intrude on his concentration, but this year he seems to have got it sorted just fine.

      4. @neiana so you don’t like him because you don’t like his clothes and shades? Are you serious?

        Dislike him because he’s started in a top team? Really? So you can’t have positive opinion on Kevin Magnussen because he started at McLaren too? Or it’s about the chassis? Lewis has been driving non-competitive cars too, remember?

    7. @colossal-squid This. I didn’t read the article as the headline presented was a load of rubbish.

      I am not a big fan of his, because of his personality and the way he shows and presents himself in the media, along with his tendency to have bad races when he is wound up, but I respect him a lot as a racing driver when he performs at his best.

      1. @strontium I think that’s an entirely fair and reasonable opinion. Some people like Hamilton or dislike Hamilton for different reasons. I personally am no a fan for many of the reasons you’ve said but like you I respect the guy because he’s a great driver at his best. You can dislike who you want! Same for any driver, really.

    8. @colossal-squid
      it’s okay if many in Britain don’t like Lewis.

      Don’t shoot the news paper for being honest. In the back of our minds we all know this is happening. But like I said it’s okay, there’s no ppoint in DENIAL.

      1. @supremacy I’m critical of the newspaper for having a flawed premise – that Hamiltons lack of popularity is predicated solely on his race. It dismisses off hand any legitimate reasons people may not like the man. It’s logic is flawed, it’s argument both impossible to prove and too simplistic to legitimately tackle or say anything meaningful about race and it’s role in sport.

        Or I’m in “denial”.

  2. I bet the newspapers are gutted he never got bevvied up and made a scene leaving the party. That would have been the story they would have loved! :P

    1. @calum “It’s clear.. to be F1 champion, you have to drink LOTS of watermelon juice!!!!”

    2. Someone understand the racist disgusting English newspapers. I take my hat to you sir.

  3. Writing nonsense like that Guardian article is absolutely insulting. And shame on you Keith for featuring it. It is sure to bring you a lot of clicks though.
    I don’t like Hamilton because he is a whining, manipulative, fake person. I’d rather respect if someone says that they are pulling all the stops to sway the team, than Hamilton who is always portraying naive guy and some sort of a victim, while backstabbing his teammates and throwing the team into a complete disarray, just to get the upper hand within the team.

    Whoever propagates that racial nonsense is a racist himself.

    “Is it because I’m black?”
    No, it’s because I can never tell if that’s a turbo or Lewis himself, when I hear a whine coming out of the car #44.

    1. Hahahahahaha

    2. Thank the Lord !
      I was getting worried we might go a whole week without someone complaining about an article they disliked being included in the roundup…

    3. @Biggsy Of all of the reasons to dislike Hamilton and you name those…? This is a man who, when gets beaten e.g. pole position on Saturday holds his hands up and says the other guy did a better job. People’s opinions are often effectively formed based on their own prejudices – and your prejudices are clear to see.

      All i will say to you and other people like you: Hamilton has just won the world championship. Can all of those people claiming that Rosberg is a superior driver blah blah blah please sit back down now. Let the haters keep hating – i’m smiling in rather a smug way today and all the way through to next year. See you in Melbourne.

    4. Chris (@tophercheese21)
      25th November 2014, 3:00

      “Writing nonsense like that Guardian article is absolutely insulting… I don’t like Hamilton because he is a whining, manipulative, fake person.”

      Ohhh, I see how this works.

    5. Well, I don’t know, but looking at the all completely white crew at Sky, for example, I think its a fair question to ask. And the article itself does mention all the other reasons why he might not be as popular as say Button is, or Mansell was.

      1. Maybe they should have hired transgender, mixed-race woman, with an ambiguous orientation, who doesn’t have a clue about F1, just to add variety?
        Those evil, white, straight men. They are the worst!

        1. Or how about maybe starting with a person that knows F1 and motorsports, then see how said person works on tv; I think @bascb has a point there, though I suppose for now most ex-f1 drivers choice is is a bit more limited, but the rest of the crew, well, if they know their trade, why not?

        2. Hm, well, apart from the race (well and orientation, which we know little about), its pretty much exactly how Sky seems to have picked the people they did not take over/poach from the BBC Biggsy.

          Or do you want to tell me that Simon Lazenby has a clue about F1?

          But please be my guest and tell me that race plays no role whatsoever in that team or indeed in how much a sporter, or any other public figure is viewed by most.

    6. True in some respects (Lewis is like Marmite to some), although I’m not sure if it’s a popularity contest or an award for who people think did best. But Lewis has to be a favourite, alongside McIlroy, and maybe Bale in my eyes, if simply from the fact that those three sports are much more widely supported than the others.

      The article mentions Lewis losing to “Sir Chris” (and why he was picked out above other Olympians is beyond me, there are a few of them with that many Golds), who came 7th in 2012, and McIlroy being the favourite – someone who self identifies as Irish (i.e. are we trying to claim his glory for ourselves, while he is not too fussed?). Damon and Nigel both winning when they eventually lost their title fights also highlights this discrepancy further.

      End point: Mo Farah, 5,000m and 10,000m double Olympic Gold, first Brit, first at a home games, only seventh ever, not even finishing in the top 3….

    7. It is sure to bring you a lot of clicks though.

      How? It’s not mentioned in the headline or promotional text for this article. By the time someone sees it here they will have already opened this article.

      Of late it seems the default, knee-jerk response to something a person dislikes on the internet is to claim it has been put there ‘for clicks’. But you clearly haven’t thought this one through as the mechanism you’re implying obviously doesn’t work.

      I don’t go along with your criticism of the article either. It’s questioning whether Hamilton would be more popular if he were a different ethnicity. It’s a challenging subject and although I don’t agree with everything the author wrote it’s a well-reason opinion piece.

      1. exactly @keithcollantine. Its a well written article that offers an opinion about F1 (and sports as such) and one of its stars.

        Its worth reading and pondering the question the author brings up. And yes, I do think it does play a role, although its certainly not the only thing.

    8. I agree that Guardian article is pretty poor and misguided in it’s assertion that race is the reason Lewis Hamilton isn’t as popular with the UK public as other British sportspeople (though Keith is quite right to include it).

      Lewis is very good at what he does and deserves the success that comes his way, but the fact is he’s just not as personable as some other sports stars. The difference in the way he and Jenson Button come across, for example, is stark. That’s not to say either way is right or wrong, but it’s always easier to root for somebody that feels friendly and good-humoured.

      The Sports Personality of the Year is just that – an award for the British public’s favourite sports personality. If Lewis doesn’t win the prize this year, it will be down to personality, not ethnicity.

      1. “it’s always easier to root for somebody that feels friendly and good-humoured.”

        So Lewis doesn’t feel friendly? hmmm, Ok.

        1. @jcost Honestly? No, not really.

          Don’t get me wrong, he’s a nice enough guy, but he doesn’t come across as the sort of bloke you could imagine having a drink and a laugh with. I don’t think the typical British sports fan can identify much with him.

          That’s not a criticism of Lewis. It’s just that the article specifically talks about him previously (and possibly soon) not winning SPOTY. That’s down to him not being as affable as some other sports personalities, in my opinion.

      2. Actually the shortlist is drawn up by print journalists.

        So it’s not even “who’s most popular”, it’s “who do dinosours like Kevin Eason think is most popular”.

    9. I definitely agree with your point. I do feel that is very harsh on Lewis, but the general idea is correct, with the point being that the article is a load of…

  4. How long before Rosberg fans seize on Laudas “I guaranteed him (LH) a championship” as “proof” that Ros was knobbeled ?

  5. @keithcollantine could you let us know what time point in the 3 hour BBC programme your interview is? might help ;)

    1. The link implies 21m44s

      1. @sato113 @scalextric The link should start playing it at 21’44 – it did when I tested it.

        1. hmm not when I clicked it. it goes to the page and you have to click play. then it starts from the beginning. oh well

    2. Davidnotcoulthard2 (if you want to send a PM please do so to the @davidnotcoulthard account instead as this one's intended to be temporary) (@)
      18th December 2014, 8:44

      @keithcollantine Any idea as to how to playthe video without Flash?

  6. Thanks for the COTD, @keithcollantine, although I do miss my name below it a little. ;)

    1. Ha, yeah, I saw it wasn’t attributed to anyone @atticus. nice COTD

      1. Thanks, @bascb. :)

        1. @atticus-2 Whoops – sorry about that! Fixed now.

        2. No problem.

    2. @atticus-2 Matiacci was doomed the day Marchione dumped Di Montezemolo. I just hope it works out because Marchione seems to be inclined to firing people who can’t achieve in the short term..

      1. Could be. I didn’t connect these two dots before. I thought even Mattiacci would be nothing but a pushover, but after hearing him speak a couple of times, I was relieved that I felt I was wrong.

        Now I think the same about Arrivabene and I can’t help but think this time I’m right.

  7. Anyone else notice that that circuit for the German GP next year is TBA on F1.com? Did I miss something here?

    1. @sward28, they alternate between Hockenheim and the Nurburgring each year so next year will be the latter. Unless something has popped up somewhere.

      1. @stigsemperfi I knew they alternated but that means that they should just slot “Nurburgring” in there. Not sure what’s up, unless they are just being extremely cautious to make sure it is confirmed first.

    2. I read at the start of the month that the Ring been sold (again). Don’t recall seeing anything about it on the ‘big’ F1 outlets though, and I don’t speak German to read the sources these guys used. Might have something to do with its status.


    3. The sale is not quite clear yet (as @neilosjames points out), and there is also some argument going on about using the “German GP” banner, because its owned by (if i remember right, could be the other way round) the Hockenheim promotor guys, but Bernie angered them by claiming he had a deal with the Nurburgring to exclusively run the race there last year @sward28.

  8. Lewis Hamilton is much like Marmite in that some people apparently dislike him whilst plenty of others really think he is wonderful. Today I met a retired Irish lady who’s dog was called Schumi (after you know who). She knew more about F1 than me and I was quite surprised by that. She also had an interest in the drivers, who they are married to, their families and all the gossip beyond that. She saw Lewis Hamilton as having a ‘trophy wife’ which I had not contemplated the idea of before she said it. I have a different view of his deal with Nicole and I can see what appeal they have for each other. To me there is more to it than ‘trophy wife’, yet, at least one person is quite firmly of this opinion.

    So what if Lewis is ‘Marmite’? Well, Marmite is a successful product that has seen off the imitators to build up the ‘love it or hate it’ marketing idea. This is a win for them as they do well from being remarkably controversial for something you slather on toast. They don’t need to convince the entire population to buy their product, they know their customers and don’t care about those that just don’t like Marmite. Similarly, Lewis doesn’t really have to care about the haters, the fans are what he quite clearly cares about. Controversies and ‘hate’ keep him in the papers which is good so long as people are polarised in a way akin to that aforementioned yeast extract. It is marketing win-win for him, the team and the sponsors. Hopefully he does get Sports Personality of the year and I would not be surprised that he wins it because of how he polarises opinion – the haters can’t ‘unvote’ for him whereas the fans can vote for him in their droves.

    1. @pjsqueak Somehow, I missed this post before writing my own version just above ^

      1. And with Beckham it doubled his personality. I think it’s too easy for many people to ‘other’ Hamilton, probably the haters who have no logical reason to hate.

    2. The Blade Runner (@)
      25th November 2014, 9:55

      Lewis is like Marmite. I think I’m in a minority in that I sometimes really like Marmite and on other occasions I just can’t stomach it. The comparison to Lewis is therefore very apt for me!

      A genuine question to F1 Fanatic’s many contributors: How would Lewis have reacted if the situation (i.e. him coming 1st and Rosberg’s car falling apart) had been the other way around? Do we think he would have been as gracious as Rosberg? Would he be signing a new contract over the coming weeks? Would be interesting to hear everyone’s thoughts.

      Marmite of not though, Lewis is an unbelievably talented racer and always has been.

      1. The Blade Runner (@)
        25th November 2014, 9:56

        * Marmite or not though…

        (edit function please Keith!)

      2. There would be whining, sulking and shouting from the top of his voice how he is a victim.

      3. How would Lewis have reacted if the situation (i.e. him coming 1st and Rosberg’s car falling apart) had been the other way around?

        I believe he would have been very annoyed, but he would still have congratulated Nico. He would also likely have complained a little, but then we rarely see a completely PR Hamilton. His disappointment would have come through.

        I doubt he would have been the petulant child some paint him to be, although even just the hint of a complaint would have been viewed as such by his detractors.

  9. On Button, there’s a question in my mind: is there any F1 future for him if McLaren picks Magnussen over him?

    1. Sadly, No. I would have loved to see him in the sport, i was secretly hoping if Mclaren deal didnt come out, he would sign with Force India and stay in F1. But apparently, FI signed Perez again, so there is no room left for JB. I’m definitely gonna miss him if he is not on the grid next year. @jcost

      1. @mjf1fan that would be sad… he could partner with other people to buy Marussia, keep their ferrari PUs for 2015 and move to Honda in case it works well in 2015 and Ferrari fails again :) For the good of their finances, they could “sell” the second seat to a top team like Red Bull, Ferrari, McLaren or even Mercedes.

        1. Obviously, it would never happen, but I have been thinking recently about how awesome it would be to see Marussia turned into Button GP :)

          1. Maybe he could atract more sponsors than Marussia did. That’s the kind of idea you sell to Venture Capitalists of Private Equity Firms :).

        2. Thats a wonderful idea but we all know its not going to happen. With the stature that Button has, it just doesnt suit him and it will be kinda demeaning if he has to do these things to remain in sport.

          He should just announce his retirement from F1, and go and race in WEC with Webber instead of waiting for a decision from Mclaren.

          Even if he stays in Mclaren for 2015, he will definitely be gone in 2016 and Vandoorne will take his place. So IMO he should just announce his retirement from F1 when he is on a high. We all know he had performed wonderfully against new talents ala Perez and Magnussen.

          1. @mjf1fan I too think Magnussen’s biggest threat right now is Vandoorne, not Button…

    2. Do WEC for a year and go to Williams in 2016 to replace Bottas. I’m sure Frank and Claire would love to have him back.

  10. Guys, it’s absolutely clear that Mercedes gave Hamilton the championship – they had Prince Harry, not Angela Merkel (or should it be Prince Albert?) in pits!

    1. LOL! :) That’s epic.

      Harry was at Red Bull garage on Saturday though…

    2. prince harry is about as german as rosberg (assuming he is descended from that line and not will carling or whoever)

    3. I think if you check his family tree Prince Harry is about the same amount German as Nico Rosberg.

      1. Sorry @frood19, I hadn’t seen your comment when I posted!!

  11. Really hope Hamilton doesn’t sign a 5-year deal. That would be really boring for the sport, and would put an end to all the speculation about a possible return to Mclaren in the future. I hope he goes for a 3 year deal instead, and keeps options open for later.

    1. @me4me Yes me too. 3 years starting now please Lewis – 2015, 16, 17. When he’s 32 he could be 4-5x wdc and able to pick his team, which might not be Mercedes by then, or could be Merc on better terms.

    2. Well didn’t Alonso have a contract for two more Ferrari years @me4me, @lockup? That wasn’t worth all that much in the end – as it is usually the case in F1. The length of the contract says something about trust and commitment at the moment of signing, but not much more. If Merc. or HAM break down next year, we will have speculation, otherwise there wouldn’t be much of it anyway!

      1. True @bosyber but I think Lewis pays more attention in that way. Also Ferrari had their reasons (misjudged IMO) for wanting a change too.

  12. From some réactions I see on this forum, i believe the gardian has indeed asked the right question. If Lewis isn’t a driving god by now and england’s favorite son, then England has to ask itself the hard questions

    1. The Blade Runner (@)
      25th November 2014, 10:48

      Hmmmm… Previous winners of the BBC Sports Personality of the Year:

      Daley Thompson
      Linford Christie
      Lennox Lewis
      Dame Kelly Holmes

      I would suggest that the mixed opinions of Lewis are in the main personailty rather than race based. There are bound to be exceptions of course.

  13. Lewis H has a strong personality and a very pronounced personal style which embraces a lot of American rapper bling. Anyone who is that clearly defined will have detractors. Older people for example would I am sure prefer someone more conservative but I don’t believe race plays a part. If he was a quiet middle of the road (god forbid) sort of guy strangely he would probably get more votes.

    1. The Blade Runner (@)
      25th November 2014, 11:23

      I think it’s perfectly easy to see why many F1 fans struggle to like a rapper lookalike; Monaco-dwelling; Pussy Cat Doll-loving; Americanised-English talking driver. He’s a world apart from some F1 fans. Throw in occasional petulant behaviour, a smidgeon of arrogance and that very “un-British” thing of showing how successful you are (“Just a kid from the UK with a dream” whilst stood next to your private jet will do it) and that just about seals it for many, regardless of how good he is on the track.

      The good news is that, conversely, all of the above appeals to many and Lewis is single-handedly generating an interest in F1 from people that would not normally take notice. That alone makes him special.

      1. @thebladerunner Those are good points, and probably why I relate best to Vettel, who also shows an active interest in the history of the sport, along with a British sense of humour. He also seems less German, as has so much emotion!

        It’s a good point that Lewis will be generating an interest in F1 from outside it’s traditional fan-base, too. He makes a very good champion for marketing F1!

  14. @keithcollantine the TeamLHMovie is a great way to show Bernie the power of social media. Actually F1 teams, drivers, journos, engineers and others have a lot to show Bernie how good social media can be to this sport.

    1. the TeamLHMovie is a great way to show Bernie the power of social media

      But how many Rolexs did it sell?

      The Little Troll cares only about the green. He certainly doesn’t give a flying [CENSORED] about the future of F1. Why would he? He won’t be around to see it.

  15. I think the Guardian piece is timely. Isn’t it about time somebody asked why there are so few black people in F1 and the media which covers it? It’s really striking to see the difference in the make-up of the crowds in Austin and Interlagos with the rest of the calendar. I don’t think Hamilton’s pioneering achievement will be truly appreciated until he’s long gone.

    1. Yes, there should be more diversity, but not just for the sake of having diversity. Basically, hire the right person for the job, and leave it at that :)

    2. i don’t think comparing ethnic make up of the crowds at different races is fair, as different locations will, by their nature feature different ethnicities. Maybe there aren’t many black people at races because there isn’t a race in a country with a majority black population?

      1. I’m not talking about a country with a ‘majority black population’, I was remarking that the crowds were more mixed at these venues. No one else thinks its odd that there are so few black people in F1?

        1. The Blade Runner (@)
          25th November 2014, 11:03

          The same could be said for many sports. Darts, Snooker, Golf (Tiger Woods being the exception to the rule), Skiing, Horse Racing etc etc.

          The question has always been: Do these sports not appeal to black people or is there an inherent racism in each which prevents them from taking part or watching?

          If Lewis is bringing more fans to F1, regardless of race, then that is a good thing. If he also helps diversify the ethnicity of F1’s fanbase then better still.

        2. Yeah, but crowds are probably more mixed because it reflects the makeup of those areas. You can’t expect to have a race crowd made up of Chinese people in Europe any more than you can expect to have a race crowd made up of black people outside of Africa.

          There are probably big structural reasons why there isn’t a race in Africa which are much more relevant to racism than the makeup of F1 crowds.

  16. So I suppose all those booing Vettel all these years have been some racist blacks and Asians? I mean, what other reason could they have not to like a guy who won not 2, but 4 titles?
    The only way to justify this disliking, which is in such a sharp contrast with his achievements, is that it is based on the fact that he is white and all of his haters are blacks and Asians.
    No wonder Kamui is so popular, despite never really achieving much. Asians are the most numerous race out there.

    Do you see now how ridiculous it sounds?

    1. I am sure that a bit of misplaced british “anti-German-ism” did play a role in that too, yes. Not racism but nationalism almost certainly. Just like it plays a role in Monza who they cheer or not.

      1. “Anit-Germanism”… So what’s up with all the support Hulkenberg is getting? What’s with all of those people who were cheering for Rosberg this year?

  17. I don’t like Hamilton. And i can guarantee that it’s not because he is black. Because I’m black too. It’s his personality. And especially this year he made it even easier for me not to like him. He can do whatever he wants with all his money. Part is that he seems to be the only one who enjoys rubbing it into peoples faces. Just like some other celebrities. The money and fame gets all in their head and a go from being likable to someone who acts like he is better than everyone else and walks around with a sense of entitlement.

    1. Please, Brian, explain what you mean by a ‘sense of entitlement’? It’s used a lot by Hamilton’s critics but I’ve never understood what it truly means. This is not a dig, I really would like to know. If you could give some examples of this behaviour it would help.

      1. Something like mentioning being “a kid from poor background” and then posting a bling picture in front of your private jet saying it was a hard battle Dan?

        I can see that rubs wrong for many people

        1. But all of that is true! From a Stevenage estate to a private jet, all because of a rare talent. Isn’t that what’s great about pro sport? It’s a meritocracy. If he was there only because his dad was loaded, I might get the entitlement bit. Otherwise it sounds a lot like jealousy.

    2. @us-brian

      Despite the bling, I think he is the only driver considering a post race career setting up schools and/or hospitals in areas of need. Already he does lots of work for children’s charities, and, it has to be said, in a discreet and seemingly genuinely caring way.

  18. WHY bury the round up after 5 older articles?

  19. Race is huge in one’s life. Maybe slightly less so in the UK than some other countries, but surely being mixed-race is something he and Nicole connect about. I’m white, but I’ve been in shops with a black friend and heard the different tone of voice he’s had when being served sometimes. I would find it crushing, but he’s used to it.

    It’s pointless pretending it’s not a factor in Lewis’ reputation. There’s less tolerance. So many of the criticisms are made-up or exaggerated or highly selected. Like ‘sense of entitlement’ by someone claiming to be black (seen that one before bro) when he’s the least like that and is constantly expressing his amazement at the change in his life.

    People complained about dads in garages – when it was Anthony but not when it was Papa Smurf. It’s everywhere.

    But Lewis is breaking a trail, I’m sure he understands that. I wish he wouldn’t go in for that stupid ‘Sports Personality’ bazaar though, even if he wins this time.

    1. i agree mate.it seems its ok when other drivers do it.but when lewis does it it annoys ppl.for example,kimi and alonso always wear shades,ppl are fine with that.lewis does it,and ppl have a problem with it.lewis has his GF at a race,ppl dont like it,button has his there,and its fine.the same when it was dads.also this lack of itelligence thing as been used against black ppl for many many years,and its exactly what some use against lewis,but not any other driver.and its always his white team mates,who are the intelligent ones.before the start of the season,ppl were basically saying lewis was too dumb to do well his season,because the cars are more technical,plus he cant look after tyres and manage fuel.im SOOO glad he proved those ppl wrong.oh and this season,lewis was actually very mature,yeah he had a little wobble in monaco,but it did look like nico cheated.

  20. For those of you who couldn’t get the brilliant fan thank you video from Lewis to work, here is another link:


  21. Lewis is black? Why wasn’t I told?!!! :)

    Seriously, however, I must be a Lewis fan because I’ve rated him the best driver in F1 for several years now. He had to earn it though – I don’t sell my support easily. And it has nothing to do with race or nationality. He just happens to be the most talented driver out there.

    Those who know me (great comment by the way, Becken) will testify to the fact that I’ve supported drivers from all walks of life, nationalities and colour over the years. I really don’t care – what matters is how they drive. And Ayrton was the best, if you want to know.

    My point (somewhat obscured by my digressions, I admit) is that it really is time that we stopped noticing race. It’s only the idiot journalists keeping the thing alive now and surely we know better.

    1. @clive-allen
      “It’s only the idiot journalists keeping the thing alive”
      I hope you don’t really believe that, because that would mean you are very naive.

      1. Cool, I haven’t been called naive in many a long year – maybe I’m old enough now to have a second childhood. Just a suggestion, however, @supremacy: if you want to disagree with a person, try pointing out where they’re wrong rather than insulting them. ;)

        1. I disagree with you when you say it’s the journalists that are keeping racism alive @clive-allen.

          It’s the average British citizen that’s keeping racism alive, the only difference now from 20 years ago is that it’s indirect/descreet and very few are honest enough to admit it.

          1. Fair enough, @supremacy, that’s your opinion and may well be your experience. In my experience however, racism is almost dead amongst the Brits and is only kept going by a few cretins and the media constantly harping on the thing.

  22. Plenty of Hamilton fans here. And for Bernie plenty of young ones
    Lewis Hamilton thanks fans as they filmed champio…: http://youtu.be/0CsX0ZMgbkI

  23. Lewis is proudly carrying that heavy cross of being Black.

    The dislike and attacks from many are of course expected.

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