Hamilton holding his tongue on Rosberg crew swap

2016 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

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Lewis Hamilton says he will not spill the beans on his view of Mercedes’ decision to swap five team members between its drivers for several years.

During a press conference with Nico Rosberg the pair were asked about the switch, prompting Hamilton to ask his team mate: “What was the explanation given to you?”

Rosberg said the change in crews had been made to improve team spirit.

“We’ve been fighting now for three years within the team for race wins and for the championship so it’s quite natural that a little separation can happen between the two sides of the garage,” he said. “And for the overall team performance that’s not a good thing because you want to have great team spirit, everyone fighting for one direction.”

“That’s why the decision was taken to rotate a little bit and I think it’s shown this year that it’s been a very good thing to do because our team spirit has been as good as ever. And we’ve seen that recently we’ve had some great parties together, everybody just sticking together, and it’s an awesome feeling within the team.”

Rosberg admitted the change had been a disruption to begin with. “Of course, initially, it’s not something that’s super-comfortable. My mechanics are close to me and it feels good, to then change takes a bit of time to gel. But I understand that from the team’s perspective that was the right thing to do.”

Hamilton said he will give his view on the matter some time in future. “You’ll have to buy my book down the line in ten years when I tell you exactly what happened,” he said. “It’ll be an interesting read.”

However Hamilton added he is now very happy with the team around him following a difficult start which included a spate of technical problems.

“My new mechanics that have come on board, it started out really tough with us on the beginning of the year,” he said. “Particularly I would say on their say because they just didn’t understand what was going on.”

“And then we have all those problems. On social media they felt a lot of heat from fans thinking people were blaming them when it was nothing to do with them.”

“And then we had a lot of success so I’ve got a really great relationship with them. So I’m very proud of the unit I have now. Of course I feel we have worked to the points of deserving the championship this year.”

2016 Abu Dhabi 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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    106 comments on “Hamilton holding his tongue on Rosberg crew swap”

    1. No, I’m not buying his book to learn about this

      1. I will buy it. As will millions of others. Hahaha

    2. well done Lewis, way to spark more conspiracy theories. If the pit crew change was an issue, state it at the start of the campaign, instead of looking for excuses now.

      1. Where is the “conspiracy theory”? He KNOWS what happened, and he says he will spill the beans in 10 years. There is no “conspiracy”. There is only the truth – which he says he will give at a later date.
        The point is, whatever the reason, it had no discernible benefit and only disrupted both drivers – as they have both claimed..

        1. You answered your own question there, @kbdavies.
          Sharing the truth in 10 years (adding “It’ll be an interesting read.”) leaves the door wide open for some people to explain the situation involving some kind of conspiracy!

          1. Stop reading into what he says.

        2. @kbdavies “spilling the beans” in ten years is noted as starting a conspiracy! and what ever he says in 10 years time DOESN’T necessarily mean its true, the only people that will think its true are the HAM fanatics like yourself ;-)

      2. @tom What ”conspiracy theories” ? It’s a fact his mechanics got swapped for no reason besides a very poor excuse, do you think Alonso would let his mechanics swap to massa’s side of the garage at Ferrari but people always complaining about Hamilton.

        1. It’s mind boggling that some of these folks find it perfectly plausible that team Mercedes would care so much about morale in their organization & everyone winning (even Nico himself puts it forward as a perfectly reasonable argument for the swap) that they would shuffle the mechanics around to keep them happy, but patently implausible that they wouldn’t feel the same about their long time driver (always touting him as such a hard worker) & German national in the German brand suffering defeat after defeat at the hands of happy go lucky, jet setting Hamilton.

    3. Conspiracy nutters at the ready

    4. Hamiton said a similar thing about what really happened in Monaco, Should certainly be interesting when there are no longer contracts and PR getting in the way. Can imagine Toto’s face as he said that though.

    5. Aaah, the power of suggestion.

      Hamilton says nothing concrete, all he does is trying to blame external factors for his potential loss.
      If there are actually more behind the swap, just say so. Otherwise, shut up.

      1. * Hamilton says nothing specific.
        (English is sometimes difficult.)

        1. That was correct though. ;)

      2. Maybe you should shut up if you have nothing to say.

    6. I have no idea why he’d say this and blatantly bait those people that think there’s some sort of grand conspiracy going on. Didn’t he once say he doesn’t play mind games? Stupid thing to say.

      1. The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the qorld he did not exist

        1. The Usual Suspects

    7. I can’t make sense of these comments

      “I will tell you later what really happened…”
      “I am very happened with my mechanics…”

      It sounds very contradictory, what the point duelling on the subject? You either are happy and that is it, don’t sparkle conspiracy theories, there are plenty of people doing that already.

      It is a bit insulting for the mechanics as well, one may conclude that he is not rating them as high as the others.+

      I don’t get it, “I mean honestly”, what’s the point?

        1. He said he would clear up ‘why’ the swap happened in the first place. Nothing to do with his mechanics. He then went on to say after the issues and hard times at the start of season that he and his mechanics have grown stronger.

          1. Don’t hint at “It will be an interesting reading” then. Because if Rosberg comment’s are anything to go by it won’t be interesting at all.

            They changed mechanics, that is it, nothing else, don’t make a story out of it, don’t keep people on the hook. You have something to say, just say it. There is no point in dragging this further. The change goes both ways, does he think less of the people that are now working with him?

            I see no point in these, unless he wants to make an excuse out of it.

            1. I would imagine that there are contracts in place that would stop him saying anything now. Or by Rosberg saying anything other than the PR line Mercedes gave.

              Guess we will just have to wait for the book to see if it is an interesting read or not.

    8. Roth Man (@rdotquestionmark)
      24th November 2016, 12:40

      I’ve never quite understood why Lewis was so upset about this. Both drivers were put in the same position by this mechanic swap and Nico accepted it and got on with it. If Lewis is hinting he was given ‘inferior’ mechanics then that means Nico had said inferior mechanics for previous seasons.

      1. The point is, you PREFER your mechanics. You have built up a working relationship and dynamic that suits you. You gel as a team of personalities, and ALL that takes time and effort to build. In a sport where winning or losing is defined by 100ths/sec, EVERY little thing counts. Losing something of this magnitude can have a discernible effect on your results/ performance, and take time to recover from.

        And just because someone else is happy to lose all of this, does not mean you have to be happy about it too. Remember, it’s not like this swap was written into his contract. Most people commenting don’t even like their car memory seat or climate control settings changed, so how hard can this be to understand?

        1. but again, Nico had to ‘deal’ with his new mechanics and just accepted it and carried on.

        2. Roth Man (@rdotquestionmark)
          24th November 2016, 13:33

          @kbdavies okay sorry, I didn’t mean to upset you, hope you’re okay. Yeah there’s a lot of uproar in the community about car memory seats so can completely understand your point and don’t get me started on climate control I like mine set to a dependable 21 degrees all year round. Got a bit upset at the thought of Toto and Nicki fiddling with it.

        3. Your argument has no legs since Nico had been in the team longer than Lewis. As per your suggestion it was “HIS” long-time mechanics that he lost.

        4. If you want to know why they changed out the mechanics @kbdavies, just look back to the animosity that was inside the McLaren garage in 2007, or indeed during several of the Senna-Prost years. We saw how these things can escalate fast and take a team down with it – and it seems the move paid off for the team, because now they have again claimed both championships and there seems to be a slightly better spirit to the team than a year ago.

          Also, Mercedes still look like being in shape to be at the top for another rules cycle.

      2. OmarRoncal - Go Seb!!! (@)
        24th November 2016, 13:25

        @rdotquestionmark Agree. Lewis should be grateful he got the mechanics who helped Nico get his 3 victories at the end of 2015.

        1. Roth Man (@rdotquestionmark)
          24th November 2016, 13:34

          @omarr-pepper Good point. I just feel Lewis could have gotten on with it or dealt with it behind closed doors. Like Nico.

          1. But that’s seemingly not his style. He has to be the drama queen…the poor kid from Stevenage that was so hard done by. The crew swap ‘for no apparent reason’. Must be ‘a higher power’. Perhaps he is that insecure, or perhaps he is just trying to build a brand for himself. Or perhaps the higher power is within Mercedes, as far as LH believes and will tell us in ten years. I promise you this LH…I won’t be buying it.

            1. @robbie Like i’ve said in other comments. You really think Schumacher wouldn’t mind it ?, or Alonso, or Vettel etc ?. But when it’s Hamilton then people like you are quick to moan about how Hamilton is a drama queen etc. You are no better cause you always complain about Hamilton.

          2. Nico? and behind closed doors? You guys are really funny, or trying hard to look funny…

            Nico for the past two years has been complaining left and right, and he was very vocal in 2014 when he was angry and accuse Hamilton he may crash him out at final races… He has deliberately crashed Hamilton quite a few times… Hamilton is not all pink and blue either but Nico is far from an angel, even at 100% fault, he never admits!

            1. @mysticus Because they don’t care what Nico is saying/doing. It’s Hamilton that makes them seeing red, always measuring with two sizes when it comes to Hamilton for their own personal hate for him for what ever reason.

      3. Seriously? Hamilton and his team had just won two world championships on the trot. And you ask why he didn’t want his team changed? SERIOUSLY??

        1. +1000
          I’ll check in 10 years to hear the details from Ham, but you have perfectly summed the whole thing up in one line, which closes the debate.

    9. Paying for a book to read a probably predictable opinion, which a 40 year old Lewis himself may no longer hold. Ridiculous. Time to put up or shut up.

    10. Of his old crew was better then the flip side is he won titles in 2014 and 2015 with a better crew. If the same crew win this year with Rosberg it could be said that this crew makes the difference. I say it would just be coincidence. As for team spirit if Rosberg wins how will the other crew feel? They came 2nd 2 years running then move to the 2 time Merc champion to then be beaten by their old driver.

    11. Damn loser mechanics have lost the past 3 years now

      1. Don’t forget they beat Schuey’s crew for 3 years running. Maybe it was time they were swapped to the WIN!!1!

    12. OmarRoncal - Go Seb!!! (@)
      24th November 2016, 13:26

      I just said it above, I repeat it here. Lewis should be grateful he got the mechanics who helped Nico get his 3 victories at the end of 2015.

      1. @omarr-pepper – even simpler, I’d just say: respect your crew. Its a high-performance sport and I’m sure there’s no room for slackers, so everyone will be giving their best. And respect them for that.

        Respect isn’t just saying “thank you guys for the hard work” at the end of the race, its also withholding negative comments like these and being the leader the crew looks up to.

        Teams at the other end of the grid might not be able to pay their crew as much as Mercedes do (or even on time), but that doesn’t make those crews behave maliciously resulting in driver complaints*, do they?

        * The exception being Maldonado.

    13. Conspiracy believers gonna have a field day. I dont get why he didn’t make a point about it at the start of the year if it bothered him. The other thing I dont like is in a roundabout way he’s saying my previous crew are better than the current crew. I dont think thats fair on them at all.

      1. exactly… how many are in a crew? according to what I’ve read, only 5 members were moved in total – my calculations two in one direction and three the other?

    14. What Hamilton forget’s is that we’ll have moved on from petty pit crew swapping in 10 years. Lot’s more of F1 stories and scandals will have broken in that time, and this won’t make the headlines.

      Much ado about nothing I expect

      1. He’s not forcing you to buy the book, is he? Go ahead and move on. What’s stopping you?

        1. Could be the prat that keeps bringing it up all at the time.
          “Lewis, Lewis, say something pratty”

    15. So what happened to ‘for no apparent reason’? The comment that caused the team to publicize a letter defending the whole team. I guess the reason is apparent to LH after all.

      It is this sort of disingenuine speak from LH that has caused me to have never gotten into him even though I respect his talents on the track. I’m sure he’s not a bad fellow off the track, but he sure seems to have an agenda.

      What’s the worst thing that it could be? That the team wanted this WDC for Nico?
      For whatever reason? If that is the case, it wouldn’t be the first time a team had a favourite but continually claimed both drivers had the same chance in the same equipment. Reubens had the exact same equipment as MS…unfortunately for RB that being a car designed to suit MS. In this case, LH remains the faster driver on average, the one that seems still more at one with the car in spite of the 5 crew swap.

      LH, to me, can only think he has been conspired against, for him to be talking about a tell-all. I suppose this might rally his followers to continue the conspiracy talk, and garner pity for him, that that can be the only reason LH is heading into the last race behind by 12 points.

      Sadly I think LH is taking a page from Trump…it’s all rigged…unless I win of course.

      1. Maybe because winning titles with two different drivers would enhance the perception of a “manufacturer dominance” a lot more than only winning with one of them, a previous champion with 50something victories under his belt. Just saying.

        1. Perhaps, but I don’t think ‘manufacturing’ unreliability for one driver to the point where he is actually expressing paranoia is all that good for the brand either. And ask any F1 insider and they will tell you that no team would spend the hundreds of millions required, including drivers’ salaries, only to scupper one of the drivers.

          1. Prior to & immediately following the allegations of Crashgate, those same insiders told us all that no team principal would ever ask his driver to deliberately crash…

    16. Classic embarrassing foot-in-mouth moment from Lewis. I wonder what his mechanics are thinking right now.

      1. OmarRoncal - Go Seb!!! (@)
        24th November 2016, 18:29

        Maybe one of his mechanics will forget to tight a wheelnut this Sunday.

        1. Still, there would be a LOT of people who speculate on how a worthy world champion Nico Rosberg is.

          1. Well, there is peolple who is still speculating on how a worthy world champion Hamilton was last 2 seasons.

            1. Sorry, meant “are” (english is not my language)

    17. Of course there was a conspiracy, the facts are pointing clearly at who had the most to gain. It was all masterminded by a group of mechanics who won two WCD’s with Hamilton but they divined that this year they would lose, so they pulled some strings and did some Jedi mind tricks to arrange their transfer to this year’s champion. And it gave them such a power rush that, as a bonus, they orchestrated berxit. I’m not sure about the Trump thing, it might have been some other mechanics.

      1. You havin a laugh then, eh? Go on. Ha ha ha. Bery funny.

    18. Been wondering for a while about this.

      Mercedes wouldn’t do it because Rosberg asked… so if there’s any story in it (and I think there was), who did push for it, and why?

      Don’t believe it had any bearing in the results, just curious about little behind the scenes stuff like this.

    19. “What was the explanation given to you?”

      When this story first broke early in the season, Toto said he sat both drivers down & told them what & why they’d be swapping the mechanics. Now what the above quote illustrates, is that Toto was not being truthful. Clearly if they say both drivers down, then Lewis would have no reason to ask that question if Nico, as he would’ve known why.

      If they change was made to improve team spirit and moral, then clearly the issue was to do with Nico’s side of the garage. Why would Lewis team be lacking moral, when they’ve been on top of Nico’s crew since he joined the team?

      Also, it was not just the mechanics they swapped, they swapped his #1 & #2 engineers as well.

      1. Hmm…first I heard of it was when LH made his ‘for no apparent reason’ comment. So to me, if indeed TW sat them down (would like to read his quotes from early in the season that you cite) then LH has been disingenuine with his for no apparent reason comment, and is just playing headgames again now by asking Nico if he knows the answer, and then saying he himself knows the answer but can’t say for 10 years.

        There might not have been ‘an issue’ stemming from Nico’s side…this might have just been a decision of fairness, and to avoid any issues arising from potentially segregating a team that best works together. It might have just been preventative medicine in other words.

        1. So what was unfair about it in the first place? They won both championships with that system, so what’s unfair about it? Do you think Horner would’ve done that Vettel at the time? Do you think Ross would’ve given Massa, Schumacher’s mechanics & engineers?

          But as Lewis said, we won’t know until he’s retired

          1. You’d have to ask the team. They’re not Horner/Vettel nor MS/FM and are you sure swaps never happened? Or are you just assuming?

      2. He does @kng11. The reason is, it is part of a mind game and putting pressure on Rosberg ahead of an important race. Hamilton knows full well, that from now on Nico will be asked by the dominant UK media about that, and whether the reason was to favour Nico.

        1. +1, hopefully Nico has the sense to see through the mind games.

    20. I don’t know if there is any record in Formula 1 history of a dominant team deliberately choosing to swap the mechanics of a two time reigning champion without any real need, at the serious risk (or with the purpose?) of hampering him.

      1. I think Mercedes would say there was a need, as spelled out by Nico in the above article. It is only LH that has said ‘for no apparent reason’ and now he is implying there was in fact a reason. Keeping up team spirit, not having a division develope etc etc. is what the team and Nico have said.

        As I see it, swapping mechanics, or whoever, does not mean suddenly one driver had crew that were unfamiliar with the car. And here we have had LH every bit at one with his car as he has been previously. I don’t see where there was a risk beyond what they were willing to take for LH, that didn’t also exist for NR. And we have once again a Merc WCC shutout and a WDC 1-2…the maximum possible for a team to achieve in a season. Obviously they had reasons to do this switch, and based on those they would have weighed all the ramifications of it (there are reasons they thought to do this to begin with) and it has turned out just fine overall. I know I know, not for LH with his worse reliability, but 100% reliability is very rare and drivers aren’t entitled to that. They are only entitled to be on a team that attempts to give them the best car to race at all times. And Mercedes does that. But racing never comes with guarantees and I highly doubt that they could plan for LH’s issues to be costly on Sunday’s and Nico’s somehow guaranteed not to affect him as much on those days.

        All that said, I doubt that anything other than LH winning the WDC again this weekend, will stop he and his fans from crying foul.

        1. Actually, if the swap was done for team harmony, LH comments just ruined that purpose :-)

      2. Red bull did some swapping in 2012 i think, was not a big deal.

    21. If there is indeed a superior pack of mechanics, Hamilton had the luck of winning two titles with them. It’s only fair that Rosberg can now have a go.

      1. Let’s hope Hamilton could “have a go” with the “superior pack” of engines Rosberg is supplied with.

        1. Faster speeds reached by Hamilton on every straight of the last races (Mexico and Brazil) shows WHO has a “superior pack of engines”, if anything. And LH fans should shut up about engines, as he stolen 3 additional engines in Spa with a fraudulent move by the team! That should tell everything about WHO is the favorite driver in Mercedes…

          1. @FRK

            Really? Stolen? By following the rules in place in the same way Macca and Red Bull have in seasons past. How does that work?

            Putting aside the fact the ‘stolen’ engine blew up in Malaysia making the Spa efforts a waste of time and pretty much gifting the championship, it is amazing you avoid the very reasons the ‘stealing’ took place.

            Because he had the only unreliable engine of the 48 engines in use this season.

            An engine that broke all test mileage records at the start of the season using just one single unit.

            Personally I am amazed Lewis is not making more of a serious issue of this because never in the history of the sport has such a reliability imbalance ‘between team mates’ affected a championship so heavily.

            1. Are you kidding? And what about the brand new engine that Rosberg coudn’t use in Monza ’15 because of technical issues, not to mention the older one that exploded during the race? And the “extraneous substance” wich forced him to retire from Singapore ’14? Gearbox issue in Silverstone ’14? Engine problem in Abu Dhabi ’14?
              Regard Spa robbery, can I remember to you that LH was the only driver to change 3 engines in a single weekend under current regulation? And the fact FIA then specified that this will not be allowed anymore, doesn’t suggest you that was, at least, a controversial move?

            2. Lewis can’t “make a serious issue of this” because the truth is that the reliability issue has been overblown no end. Hamilton lost this championship (assuming it is lost) principally because of his poor starts and not showing up in Baku, Singapore and Suzuka. Simple as that really.

    22. People in general don’t like change. Period. I speculate that Lewis knew the change was coming and was immediately sceptical, but with the type of season he’s had, or rather the technical changes that were introduced this season, i.e. clutch, no in help to drive the car, etc,etc and now this crew change? probably didn’t sit right with him. Nico may have been equally sceptical, but at the end of the campaign whose in the best position? Lewis surely isn’t and may want to whinge about it and Nico is clarifying the level of disruption but ultimately doesn’t care as he is on the brink of winning his first WDC…

      I agree, i won’t be buying a book to find out his speculative machinations.

    23. *who’s not whose.

    24. Back in 2006, the new addition to the F1 calendar – the Turkish GP, allowed me to watch my first ever F1 race. I started watching more regularly in 2007 which brought me to this point where I spend hours reading about F1 daily, browsing through the comments, even in winter, just like many of you in here. I became a Hamilton fan after seeing him put up a great fight against the only champion I knew at the time.

      I didn’t have a clue about his personality, so I didn’t have a reason not to like him. It was only after 2010 when I moved to the UK and starting watching F1 through BBC where I could see his interviews, that I began feeling that something was not quite right with him. But my fandom was still too strong to see his childish behaviour. A few more years past, 2012 and 2013 went relatively well for him in terms of off-track stupidity.

      But since 2014 he is achieving the impossible for me. To put the things I am going to say into perspective, I no longer watch football but I still consider myself the fan of the team I used to support 15 years ago. That is how it works with being a fan, and I don’t even know why I started loving that football team, it just happened. With Hamilton, I had a reason, so in theory this one should be even stronger. But this little quote here from him is basically the final nail. It is so plainly stupid. And I hope on Sunday Rosberg wins it. Or even better, he crashes into Hamilton and gets away with it.

      1. @leblep What is so stupid about it ?. Do you think Schumacher had his crew swapped for his teammate ?, or Alonso but when Hamilton is givin’ his opinion about it then it’s all ”stupid” I’m so tired of fake fans like you.

        1. @patienceandtime, mate we really shouldn’t insult each other over something like this.

          And since you are asking here is why I think this is stupid:
          1. I think this is the second time he is whinging about the crew swap, the first one being fairly recent as well. If he had a problem with that he should have said/done something about it before the season, not after falling behind in the standings. Even if this has genuinely given Lewis a disadvantage, this way it just looks like an excuse.
          2. Why is this crew swap a disadvantage to Lewis? Getting to used the crew? Same applies to Rosberg. This crew is worse? That is even more worrying for Lewis’ 2 titles’ credibility then. Or are these 5 guys spies from Nico to jeopardize Lewis’ car?
          3. What on earth is this ‘I will tell you later’ crap? And before the title decider?! Just say whatever you are going to say. Now that’s definitely stupid in my book. Sorry.

          1. ” I think this is the second time he is whinging about the crew swap, the first one being fairly recent as well. ”

            It clearly states in the article that during the press conference, both drivers were asked a question about it. Both drivers gave their answers… why does every time Lewis Hamilton answers a question posed to him by the media, he’s automatically “whinging”?

            1. It’s not that he answered, it’s what he answered.

            2. To be fair he did invite the question. If you watched the PC, in reply to an earlier question about the season generally he mentioned the swap and put the term “my mechanics” in inverted commas, whatever that was supposed to mean… but clearly implied he wasn’t happy about it.

          2. Simply a guess …
            1) Ever wonder why NR asked for and received coaching over the radio about LH’s settings and braking points?
            2) Ever wonder how possibly LH’s crew got to know his preferences and driving style to zero in the car for qualy and the race?
            3) Ever wonder if another driver could tap into the crew’s knowledge first hand for set-up then receive radio coaching that maybe he could produce the same results.
            … but who knows, I’m just guessing.

      2. @leblep Since 2007 there has been a long trail of fake ex-fans claiming some inconsequential thing has turned him against them, but they’re not prejudiced honestly cos they used to be a massive fan you see. But gradually your posting will give you away, because there’ll be lots of it and you will invent stuff.

        Meanwhile genuine fans, of either Hamilton or simply the sport, will either not care, because it’s trivial, or they’ll understand that it probably resonates with what McLaren did in 2010.

        1. @lockup All I was trying to do there was just to express my feelings and experiences with what I consider one of the more intelligent and level-headed F1 communities which is something of a rarity on the internet. You might think otherwise, but it is perfectly feasible to start not liking someone after a period liking that person. Some of the things Lewis says simply grinds my gears. And over time it has added up to this point. Come Sunday, deep down I will probably still be rooting for Hamilton, but for now my conscious decision is not to support him.

          1. Lewis has always been the same, and your posting is ill-natured and derogatory, so you’re not credible.

        2. Spot on Lockup, spot on.

          It’s truly tiring to constantly see the ‘I am/was a huge Hamilton fan but’ commentary from people that then whinge about the most ridiculous rubbish.

          I mean here we are at a decider and there is someone doing the same on another forum deriding Lewis and downplaying his issues this year because he has said he likes fashion in an interview with Maxim magazine!

          I was literally without words.

          1. Yep @Drg, it’s about status, ultimately. If you feel you lack it, then it helps if you can classify whole groups of people beneath you on the totem pole. Women, for example – instantly puts you half way up even if you’re the lowliest male! Obviously someone like Lewis is a bit of a fly in that ointment, can make them a bit desperate :)

    25. It’s actually not too uncommon for teams to shuffle mechanics around from year to year in order to ensure that everyone is working as a team, For the team.

      It’s not just in F1 either, I know of a few Indycar teams that operate that policy & rotate there team of mechanics every 2 years.

      1. Exactly. We have seen what happens in a team if they don’t. And it is not pretty

    26. You think Schumacher would swap their mechanics for their teammates ?, or Alonso ?, or Vettel. All WDC, any intelligent F1 fan can smell this whole crew swap stinks like rotten fish, Ross Brawn also told that Toto Wolf lies a lot, go figure..

      1. I think there is a lot of interesting stuff going on in the f1 paddock that we don’t know about, that’s why i read these biographies. I am very curious about the whole Torro rosso situation with max an carlos last year, The demotion of kvyat and why he comes back next year, how nasr and Ericsson get along, this silly crew switch. And all the cheating that teams get away with. Write more stuff ex-f1 people!

        1. Whoops, shouldn’t be a reply. Sorry

      2. Well, but isn’t one of the things we hold against many of those is that they were their teams clear no. 1 driver and the other driver was not given a fair chance to beat them @patienceandtime?

        It certainly was the case for Schumacher in his first part of his career. In the second part, I seriously doubt he had better or different equipment than Rosberg had. And it was probably the case for Alonso at Renault, it was certainly the case at Ferrari for him, and despite the team claiming both were equal at Red bull, I doubt that Webber really ever got a fair chance (because the top brass were clearly supporting Vettel, see their reaction to their Turkey clash).

        At Mercedes they do not have a no. 1 driver, despite Hamilton having been favoured (see Nico having to adhere to team orders in the past under Brawn, also Niki Lauda clearly favours him, even if he has been toning it down since the start of the year a bit), earning more than double the money etc.

        It is pretty usual for a team to mix up the mechanics to keep them working as a team. Just look at how McLaren rearranged their complete garage to make clear that they SHARE data etc, and that was not in 2007 but when Button started beating Hamilton at times.

        1. Just look at how McLaren rearranged their complete garage to make clear that they SHARE data etc, and that was not in 2007 but when Button started beating Hamilton at times.

          It was the other way round, and I suspect that’s what rang the wrong bells for Hamilton this time. In 2009 Lewis was the star, doing videos in the factory and everything, then when Jenson came in as WDC they made a massive fuss of him, took Phil Prew away from Lewis and gave him a new RE that he never really got on with, over the winter.

          Andy Latham immediately handed Oz and China to JB with a bad call and poor communication, till we saw in Canada ’11 that Lewis simply did not trust him when he told him to park the car. The whole thing was destabilising for Lewis, with for example that episode when he arrived at the factory to find Jenson and all the engineers poring over his telemetry. There was such an effort to make the drivers equal, when they were not equal.

          So although it might not be the same this time, it has echoes of that, most likely.

    27. In my opinion, the best thing to do will be for Mercedes to swap another set of mechanics/crew at the start of the 2017 season. And going forwards, repeat the same at the start of each season (if they’re not already doing so). Make it a part of the culture that they are team mechanics working on one of the team’s two cars, and unaffiliated to any driver.

      1. Had they started that after 2014 this ‘issue’ might never have arisen indeed; I agree, a big team like Mercedes should just keep mixing up the teams every winter @phylyp; even if we’d lose Mass/Stepney bromances, Ferrari would have been better off without a team that was only for one driver, for example.

      2. I agree with that too @phylyp. The reason behind this move were probably to do exactly what you say, to improve the whole team and teamwork inside of it.

        Makes perfect sense to avoid building “camps”.

    28. I think the book Rosberg will write will be more interesting and hopefully will explain the thruth behind how he had to left a deserved win to Hamilton in Monza ’14 as a punishment forced by Wolff/Lowe after Spa ’14, or wich was the real cause of strange issues he had in Singapore ’14 and Abu Dhabi ’14, or why his engineer caused him to be penalized for radio infringement in Silversone ’16, or why his pit crew hold him 3-4 seconds more at the pit stop after having served an unfair penalty, and many more “strange” events he faced during last 3 seasons…
      THAT will be an interesting reading!

    29. It’s such an overt act to change the crew that it can’t exactly be described as underhand or part of a conspiracy. I think Lewis is just playing games here, especially as he doesn’t actually justify the comments.

      He is just stirring to reinforce the idea that he is better than Nico ahead of a crucial race. He has been doing it since Malaysia and again here throughout the whole press conference, he was getting little digs in, like:

      “I would have been 30 secs up the road in Brazil without the red flags”.

      When asked about their relationship, he said we used to do X,Y,Z together, and I still do all those things but Nico has changed and focuses on himself (this was quite funny, it wasn’t I’m sure, but it could have been interpreted as him bemoaning Nico getting married and not being available to come out and play anymore).

      When both were asked for their best and worst races of the season, Nico chose to mention only his best and avoid the bad, but Lewis asked the media to tell him if he had had any bad races, as if there were none. When the media mentioned Singapore and Baku, he took a shot at Nico for avoiding the issue by saying it was important to remember the bad ones to learn from mistakes. I found this a bit odd, as he had just implied there were no bad races and then he took the opportunity to clarify that Baku wasn’t his fault! Presumably still blaming the sun for that one then.

      It is entertaining to watch. Unfortunately, judging by his responses and reactions, I think in some way these mind games do actually affect Nico. So I guess you can’t blame Lewis for putting the pressure on this way.

      1. Also, how could I forget, he brought up the “issues” in Monaco and Spa ’14 as well for good measure.

      2. Imagined Lewis as Calvin, missing his Hobbes in Nico, at your comment abt. him sounding as if he missed him since the wedding; thanks!

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