Winning means less without Hamilton threat – Rosberg

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In the round-up: Nico Rosberg says he doesn’t get the same thrill from winning a race when Lewis Hamilton isn’t in the fight.

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If F1 has too little excitement lately, does NASCAR have too much?

I love NASCAR racing, but [Sunday’s race at Talladega] is really pushing the limit of what can be considered racing. Along with the 21-car wreck in the video above, they had three other wrecks “big ones” involving seven, seven and twelve cars. That’s a total of 47 cars in a field that started 40. Add on the smaller wrecks and the number of cars that involved in a wreck is 56. That’s not racing, that’s a demolition derby.

On top of that, it practically requires a Concorde Agreement from three or four different drivers for anybody to mount a challenge for the lead. They racing is deemed close, but when you are running three wide, eightrows deep, it really doesn’t give that impression as nobody can do anything.

Good thing Kansas is coming up where we can get back to real racing.
Corey (@Dragon86)

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On this day in F1

The San Marino Grand Prix was held for the first time 35 years ago today, and won by Nelson Piquet for Brabham.

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54 comments on “Winning means less without Hamilton threat – Rosberg”

  1. “when I win a battle with Lewis, that’s what gives the ultimate thrill.”

    How does he know?

    (Sorry couldn’t help myself)

    1. Hehe. Spot on.

    2. RP (@slotopen)
      3rd May 2016, 2:04

      Hey, be fair, Roseberg has outsmarted Hamilton this season.

      First he sucker Hamilton into swapping mechanics.

      Them he convinced Hamilton that starting in second gear would give faster starts. Brilliant!

      1. William Jones
        3rd May 2016, 8:17

        Haha, though I wish we lived in a world where people didn’t actually believe the first one!

    3. @tdm haha good one!

    4. From the last 3 races last year and the first 2 this year where he beat Hamilton on track @tdm for example

      1. I don’t think facts are appreciated in this thread @bascb

    5. You’re mean.

      1. Mongol General: Wrong! Conan! What is best in life?
        Conan: Crush your enemies. See them driven off the track before you. Hear the lamentations of their teams.

  2. All the steps taken in the name of cost saving and efficiency yet because of some bureaucratic parc ferme rules they had to jet a component they already had locally.

    I suspect in future Mercedes may not be quite so keen to push upgrades out to their customer teams if they are so marginal on spare parts.

    1. lol spot on!

    2. @philipgb bang on, I just love the irony of it

  3. Shoki Kaneda
    3rd May 2016, 0:50

    This is completely disingenuous. Rosberg does not care how he wins. If you doubt that, review Monaco 2014 qualifying. Any driver in the field will take a win, regardless the circumstances. Rosberg has proven he is willing to actively subvert an opponent.

    I have no doubt that Rosberg would prefer to beat Hamilton in a straight fight. It happens so seldom that it must be gratifying.

    1. Actively subvert an opponent. You mean like when LH cranked his settings late last year out of desperation only to be told stop it, which still wasn’t good enough and they had to insist they would just give NR permission to crank his too, and only then did he go back to his instructed settings? That kind of subversion? The whining on the radio for special treatment to get by Nico through team strategy since he couldn’t do it on the track?

      1. Don’t make the exception the rule. As well as Nico has performed in the last 7 races, his historical win record versus Lewis in a straight fight is rather poor to say the least. I’m glad Nico has found his rhythm and a decent point lead, so he can say that he isn’t ecstatic unless Lewis was presented with the same opportunity. Good on Nico. But let’s face it, if Lewis’ luck turns around, Nico will be least happy when he seldom beats Lewis in a straight fight

        1. No I think it points to Nico deserving some credit for being stuck in the same dirty air that saw LH so desperate for any way the team might go out of their way to help him beat him. No denying it there have been times when LH was able to reel Nico in, and Nico less so, but consider each incident on their own and I think NR’s abilities are greater than he is getting credit for….he’s much closer to LH than it looks.

          Would like to know why the exception IS the rule for Nico though?

      2. lockup (@)
        3rd May 2016, 12:10

        Not really the same thing is it @robbie?

        Though I believe Nico about the ecstasy.

  4. As much as I am gutted for the shenanigans taking place at Mercedes re the absolutely uncalled-for withdrawal/swap of personnel from a 3-time championship winning driver to a non-championship winning one (yes, Hamilton merits some level of priority which is absolutely earned unless you are a bumbling socialist who believes otherwise) and the yet to be fully explained nor resolved series of technical issues solely afflicting the current world champion, I feel Nico’s success has indeed been overshadowed by the recent happenings and that is quite frankly very unfortunate.
    It is quite understandable that he sees his recent wins as lacking because coming out on top after a very difficult and challenging duel gives a different kind of satisfaction to any competitor. And that is why I cheered for him when he won the first 2 races of the year for being the first to get off the line and doing everything right during the race in order to win.
    But his last two wins have merely been..meh..
    That said, It’s not his fault these things are happening so he should maximize the opportunities and pleasure of each win while it lasts.
    As I said, Hamilton has at this stage in his career, even though he continually says he does not want it, earned the right to some level of priority within the team. The continued talk of equal treatment flies in the face of the facts regarding both men’s career. Lewis has always come out on top when they fight, is the better driver and has won more championships. When the chips are down, you can count on him to deliver.
    Even Mercedes parent company is structured around recognising and promoting success and achievements. No?
    Just my take on the whole issue.

    1. So, assuming that the problems have anything to do with the swap, which, I doubt to be honest, what you are saying is you’d prefer it if it was all happening to Nico?

      1. Not at all.
        Unlike the lot that rejoice whenever a driver you don’t like encounters race-ending or handicapping technical issues, for me, the excitement in a race greatly reduces since I much prefer to see drivers slug it out on track.
        The drivers I admire currently in F1 are Lewis, Seb, Fernando, with honorable mention of Perez, Danny and with Max Verstappen appearing on the radar. Nico is not necessarily one of my best but I never revel in excitement and joy whenever an issue befalls him or any other driver out there.
        It would be a breath of fresh air if the horde of fans no matter who they support are as respectful.

        1. But logically, if the problems are due to the swap, then either Lewis gets them, or Nico does. No?

    2. I understood that the swap has a lot to do with keeping the team together @tata. During last year the team saw a “Lewis guys” vs “Nico’s crew” animosity developping which can seriously hurt the team in the long run, so to prevent things going too far they mixed up the crews to make everybody feel part of one big team again.

      1. When you read the article about the “logistics” of preparing that china engine for Hamilton, its clear to see why that change in crew makes sense. To do an all nighter, as Loewe mentions, doing shifts to ensure the guys get some sleep, would only work if BOTH crews get involved, something that would not be an option if there are bad feelings between the crews on both sides of the garage.

        1. Exactly @bascb, if you look at that article, the whole team worked through the night to get Hamilton on the 10th gridslot with a well working engine – for that you really do need a united team rather than two groups of people. And their reward is getting that 1-2 at the end of the race.

          And when you think about it, it also shows the nonsense of assuming Hamilton got the B-team now – they need the best people they can get, there won’t be stragglers left after three years of fighting at the sharp end, so there isn’t a B-team.

          Finally, in China and Bahrain, Hamilton didn’t seem very involved in celebrating ROS’ win to me – now we saw pics of the whole team, including Hamilton, celebrating a 1-2; just what the team needs.

      2. To suggest (Tata “Hamilton merits some priority”) that the crew that worked on Hamilton’s car was on a different level to Rosbergs is plain ridiculous and disrespectful to the crews. The job specifications qualifications, pay and experience would be the same in both crews in an organisation like Mercedes. As @bascb says the swap would have been made for perfectly sensible man management reasons.

    3. @Tata I don’t think there are any ‘shenanigans’ going on at Merc. Just normal stuff. But unfortunately LH’s wording has had the desired effect, as I’ll assume he intended in his awkwardness. As if Merc does anything for no apparent reason. As if LH doesn’t know what the reasons are.

      I think Nico continues to show why he deserves the equal treatment he thankfully gets from Mercedes, as they are obviously racers who get it, unlike you. You would have Nico never have the chance to get onto LH’s level as long as they are teammates, and thank goodness Merc doesn’t hang one driver out to dry like that. They give both drivers every opportunity they can each season, and don’t fix things so that one is continually favoured. If they did, and with how so many people are already tired of the Merc domination, what would it be like if they went the one-rooster way and ensured only one driver gets the priority?

      The Merc driver rivalry is one of the main things F1 has going for it while they dominate. What a shame you would prefer otherwise. You’ve already ordained that LH will always come out on top and therefore it should stay that way for the future by them prioritizing, ensuring NR cannot ever beat LH fair and square. That’s a terrible approach.

    4. If the mechanic swap is the reason then both drivers are the same and Hamilton is not as good as people thought it’s just who had that particular set of mechanics. I do not believe that for a second. The only thing I am looking forward to is when Hamilton finally flips and tweets the blue prints to the MERC engine, hopefully he does this soon so the other manufacturers have plenty of time to copy this in time for next season.

      1. lockup (@)
        3rd May 2016, 12:27

        hahaha had to laugh at that one :))

      2. – The only thing I am looking forward to is when Hamilton finally flips and tweets the blue prints to the MERC engine, hopefully he does this soon so the other manufacturers have plenty of time to copy this in time for next season.

        That made me chuckle:)
        In reply to some comments above, yes the had to work together during the night to fix Hamilton’s car because they had to for various reasons, just as Hamilton is obligated to get into the car and drive no matter what.

        @robbie To keep suggesting that Hamilton deserves no priority within the team is nonsensical. Truth is the man has beaten Nico in every season they have competed together since childhood. So how equal is that?
        Have you all so conveniently forgotten Hamilton’s performance against Nico early 2014 – the annihilation that was taking place, before the data sharing incident occurred? I remember 20 second gaps. Apparently Nico could not maximize the potential of the car. So he needed a coaching on how Lewis drives.
        MERC have gone out of their way to help Nico catch up. Still, he was beaten again and again.
        But finally, he has learned because his current driving style -carrying mega speed into corners and late braking among other maneuvers to a large extent mirrors Lewis’.
        Good for him to have learned but still both men are not equal in performance and achievement. Saying otherwise is a blatant lie.
        @bascb and @bosyber, I am not suggesting any sabotage from the guys working with him. Far from it. In fact pointing out the switch of team personnel is saying such move is the opposite of what happens in working situations. The place where success keeps coming from in any establishment gets re-inforced and receives support rather than being destabilized.
        Now, each business has products that perform better than the other. All of them are not equal and are not treated as such.
        Hence in MERC situation, with the current rules, they are most favorable to have 1-2 finishes and that has been occurring no matter the hiccups. To make such changes as they have done, with the excuse of team spirit improvement suggests a shake up of the order of the 1-2 finishes they have been having. Obviously, someone had been very sad within the team.
        So having done the shakeup, I say, fix the car so that the Lewis hopefully can fight for second position while he still can.

        1. A well reasoned response +1!

          Frankly I find the most offensive aspect of the ‘mechanic swap’ debacle is the ridiculous lengths Toto is going to justify something he has clearly picked up from a ‘Management for Dummies’ book. Silo management as it’s known is an early 90’s American concept affecting large organisations with huge numbers of people. It’s largely discredited in any smaller team based management and almost certainly has zero place for the dynamic, highly skilled and trained trackside mechanics and engineers working in a incredibly stressful environment. And that is without the individuals being considered likely consciously or not to do such and then being told they were! Rotation is all well and good in different roles and silo management might have implications in Brackley factory assuming the whole place is Nico vs Lewis but has no place in a amongst a few mechanics all of whom wish for both the cars to be on the grid. I find it incredibly sad and a real picture of where his management skills are so lacking in comparison to say, Brawn who without any formal management training would have sailed right past this without it becoming some huge ridiculous conspiracy he needs to defend that simply affects all involved including the drivers!

          This is the kind of unnecessary destabilisation that bring about failures. The application of poorly defined or proven theories into teams or organisations by exponents that simply do not know or understand what they are doing but like all good ‘Generals’ had a good last battle and therefore have credibility.

          Toto would be best served by remembering the one simple rule in the art of leadership and management (and yes I am qualified to suggest such before the comments start) and putting all the silly books and ideas down.

          ‘Managers do things right’
          ‘Leaders do the right thing’

          It always defines who and what an individual is and usually is the best tool for determining future performance by such.

          So far my ‘do the right thing’ is severely in the debit as far as Toto is concerned.

          1. – Brawn who without any formal management training would have sailed right past this without it becoming some huge ridiculous conspiracy he needs to defend that simply affects all involved including the drivers!

            Interestingly, Toto’s swap may have done the opposite of what he claimed were the initial intentions. I would hate to be those guys who have moved from Nico to Lewis and suddenly the world champion stopped winning races.
            How about that for team spirit uplifting?

          2. +1000 @Drg.

        2. Tata:

          “As much as I am gutted for the shenanigans taking place at Mercedes re the absolutely uncalled-for withdrawal/swap of personnel from a 3-time championship winning driver to a non-championship winning one (yes, Hamilton merits some level of priority which is absolutely earned unless you are a bumbling socialist who believes otherwise) and the yet to be fully explained nor resolved series of technical issues solely afflicting the current world champion, I feel Nico’s success has indeed been overshadowed by the recent happenings and that is quite frankly very unfortunate.

          Claiming the mechanics swap and reliability issues are Mercedes deceiving Hamilton is so rude.

        3. Great response, @Tata. For those who do not get it, Tata NEVER claimed that the mechanic swap and reliability issue are related. But the point is, no one here can claim for a fact they aren’t. And Mercedes can’t claim it for a fact either – as not everything can be measured by data and numbers.

          Either way, it was stupid decision; even for the reason Toto gave. Ask yourself this: How come it wasn’t done by RBR for Vettel, Renault/ Ferarri for Alonso, and Schumacher? Because you potentially have far more to lose by disrupting a close knit team, than you have to gain.

        4. @tata I don’t ‘keep suggesting’ LH deserves no priority on the team. I do, based on Merc’s actions, expect them to continue to be fair to both drivers and not favour either one. Since you claim LH has beat NR every year since they were kids, then obviously he doesn’t need the help, and wouldn’t you be disappointed if he won because his teammate was disfavoured? I’m just following Merc’s cue…they treat both their drivers equally and I would not expect a true Champion to expect or need to have his teammate handcuffed somehow in order to beat him. As it is LH has had the advantage of having all his years in F1 be with a top 3 team…this is only the start of Nico’s third WDC capable season, so LH already has that advantage of much more experience at the top. LH is deserving of everything he gets from Merc and in F1, but that does not mean he deserves to have a teammate less favoured on the team. Merc doesn’t play that way, and Nico doesn’t deserve that, so it is not about what you think LH deserves…it’s how Merc is playing this rivalry and I have had no issue with that from race 1 of their relationship at Merc.

          1. Just to add…what more can LH ask for than a race winning and WDC capable car as he is being provided, in spite of these temporary glitches? Merc has done their bit.

            And I’ll reiterate…thank goodness Merc doesn’t favour either driver or it would just be MS/Ferrari all over again, which is the last thing F1 needs. We were robbed of racing between the drivers then, and to have only LH be the winner all the time at Merc would by now I’m sure have seen the ratings fall further than they already have. Thank goodness Mercedes are racers at heart and get it. They get that LH wouldn’t want to win that way. They get what the fans deserve to see…a true rivalry, not a skewed one.

          2. Merc changed the balance of the car last year, which suited Nico (mid season). Merc gave Nico the guy who Lewis seemed to love after the races last year, whom I believe (iffy) has some relationship with starting procedures/clutch engagement. Merc also has a terrible history of providing a good car for Lewis during qualifying this year and in 2014. Not to mention Lewis is stuck with a race engineer who doesn’t seem to care one way or the other if Lewis wins or loses… Really.

            Merc are … managed by a billionaire who only cares about making money for Mercedes and promoting the brand. Lewis has never had a straight shot at winning his titles in 2014,2015 or this year. Nico has had issues, but they have never been as debilitating as the ones that hit Lewis this year or in 2014.

          3. What a bunch of drivel. Tinfoil hat award for you.

  5. So cool. Thanks for the COTD

    1. ColdFly F1 (@)
      3rd May 2016, 7:57

      Congratulations, @dragon86.

      PS I didn’t know Maldonado moved to NASCAR.

  6. I don’t quite get the comments about Mclaren saving fuel…

    Sure, they’d be 50s up the road, but I suspect most teams would if they do that.

    1. exactly

      1. ColdFly F1 (@)
        3rd May 2016, 6:18

        Honda is known to be less fuel efficient than the other PU’s. @mike, @praxis

        1. They would all use more, but to a point as then the weight would counter the speed. So again the fuel efficient engine(merc) would be faster as it would be lighter.

          So in reality yeah they would be closer but not by 50 seconds in my opinion

        2. @coldfly,
          But I highly doubt that puts them in Williams territory if not saving fuel.
          Would be lot more believable, if it was Red Bull having the same engine & stating the same.

        3. @coldfly
          I didn’t know that, if true, I can certainly see what he means now.

  7. Gee Lewis sure looks ‘happy for the team’ n that photo above :-P

    1. About as happy as his jeans look for not being in the dustbin.

  8. ROS didn’t learn the lesson of the Australia 2015 press conference.

  9. Why is ROS being so humble and down to earth ??

    Have we ever seen VET or Lewis or even ALO giving any considerations to their rivals when they hit trouble ??

  10. Swapping personnel between Hamilton and Nico looks suspicious but problem is that Nico has been winning since Hamilton clinched title last year …so something else is causing Hamiltons problems

    1. Merc ‘changed the car’ mid season last year. Lewis own words. Lewis said he had got slower, but his teammate was about as fast. Lewis has also had reliability issues this year, and a couple bad starts, off the front row, which is surprising but I guess maybe that has more to do with the mechanic swap, because I think the guy that helped Lewis with starts is over on the other side of the garage this year.

      1. I highly doubt there is a wall between the sides. The whole team, I am sure, will be continuing the work to ensure both drivers have all the help possible to get the best starts possible as the season progresses.

  11. I watched, I think Brundle ask Nico about winning with out Lewis, and Nico could have cared less at the time, if he had anyone actually pushing him. At least Lewis is perfect in qualifying this year, still, when hes had a car that he could drive.

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