Hamilton won’t influence choice of Rosberg’s replacement

F1 Fanatic Round-up

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In the round-up: Lewis Hamilton says he has no say over who Nico Rosberg’s replacement at Mercedes will be.

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If you weren’t surprised by Nico Rosberg’s announcement yesterday, you’re very hard to surprise:

I love to be shocked, and what a shock this is.

I’ve got to give him credit; he’s achieved the dream and is going out on top. What a way to do it. The guy obviously wants to focus on family and nobody could ever begrudge him that.

I’d love to see Alonso back at Mercedes but the smart money would be on Wehrlein stepping in. Whatever happens, waiting to see how the next few months unfold just got incredibly exciting.
Mark G (@Sparkyamg)

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On this day in F1

Two years ago the FIA introduced new rules to prevent drivers following Max Verstappen’s outrageously short route to Formula One:

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Keith Collantine
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165 comments on “Hamilton won’t influence choice of Rosberg’s replacement”

  1. Ricciardo probably doesn’t have a kid or a serious relationship. At some point you realize that your loved ones are the only thing that matters, and that you only have so many years on this world.

    1. Saw on the Twitter some folks are calling Rosberg a coward or saying he is a disgrace and doing fans and the sport a disservice. Crazy. He doesn’t owe us or the sport a thing. Life decisions are up to each individual to decide and I totally respect him putting his family first.

      1. I would quit just the same.I would want to spent more time with my kid.

        1. Agreed. There’s a big difference between being a great man/woman and being a great racing driver. As fun as sports are to play and watch, they’re still not important. It’s impressive when you see someone who’s been completely immersed in it have the broader perspective to have control over it, instead of it having control over him.

      2. Those people calling him a coward surely read the headlines and made their own conclusions, because who needs facts and logic and you have a fertile mind?

        A week later after achieving his childhood dream he decides to retire, and apart from the family reasons, which would be more than enough in itself, he explain his reasons further.

        Rosberg admits that the mental strain was immense, and it is something that he does not wishes to endure again ( I remember him saying in the abu dhabi press conference: “I hope not to go trough that anytime soon again”). He also said that he had to reach to another level in order to achieve this WDC, that he had to work extra hard and continuously work in his craft to do so.

        Time and time again he praised his teammate, labeling him one of the greatest, and that it took everything from him to put one over him ( this is the ultimate praise on Hamilton, shame some people don’t understand that)

        For someone to express how hard it was to overcome his difficulties, and that it mentally drained he was afterwards, you have to be the opposite of a coward.

        Congratulations to Nico, for his championship and for the bold decision that he made.

        1. Peppermint-Lemon (@)
          3rd December 2016, 19:15

          I really hope you get a cotd with your words for what you said is the single most sensible comment I’ve read since the last race finished.

          1. Very very well said … this was a very brave move from a worthy champion … all the dummies calling him a coward should be ashamed of themselves.

      3. Spot on.

        I did my bit of Twitter policing and had a word with a few (ironically) cowardly people who sat there insulting a guy who’d decided to retire and give someone else a crack at the whip after achieving his dream, and to spend some more time with his family.

        What a horrible bunch of people we sometimes live amongst to perceive that as ‘cowardly’.

        I wasn’t always the biggest Nico fan, but the way he conducted himself from the second half of the season onwards has been highly commendable.

        He owes US nothing. It’s HIS job. I said to a mouthy fella on there ‘So, would it be ok for Nico to tell you ‘oi you coward – stay in your job for another year cos I want you to’? Puts it in perspective.

        They’re not there to entertain us – the entertainment is a biproduct of what they do. They put their own lives on the line, and guess what? If they lose that life, it’s their families that suffer, not ours.

        People should really learn some respect.

        1. Don’t engage with them Dan

          They will drag you down to their level and win by experience 😉

        2. To Dan Selby:

          They’re not there to entertain us – the entertainment is a biproduct of what they do. They put their own lives on the line, and guess what? If they lose that life, it’s their families that suffer, not ours.

          Is there any way you would be on line to succeed Bernie? Do you happen to own stock in the Deltas or in Liberty? Because that would really make my day.

        3. He is a coward.

          1. You are.

      4. They said similar things if Casey stoner. Both went out as stars

    2. ColdFly F1 (@)
      3rd December 2016, 10:24

      And there is another big difference; have a look at Rosberg’s social media (I think it was FB).
      Rosberg was taught by his father who spent many many hours with Nico in carts etc. I fully understands that a way of thanking his father is by winning the WDC, like Keke did. That must have given him a lot of extra energy and drive.

      But there is no reason to better your father and do one extra; probably quite the opposite if you truly love the man.
      Probably not THE reason by A reason.

      1. “But there is no reason to better your father” i beg to differ mate, it would be utmost respect and achievement even for your father to raise a son who reaches and exceeds the success he did… father would be over the clouds not underground!

    3. He wouldn’t have quit had he not won the title, so that doesn’t wash with me.

      1. We will never know

        1. Evil Homer (@)
          3rd December 2016, 13:01

          Yes we now know- he said at the presentation he would have done another year if he didn’t win the title!

          Smart move- young, F1 Champ, wealth, attractive wife and young family – nice life Nico :)

      2. The ideas of having a family and achieving one’s lifetime goals are not necessarily mutually exclusive. The idea being a F1 champion has been with him his whole life. Having a family, not just the idea of it, has become his life more recently. Obviously, weighing the two together and trying to find the right balance has been a struggle for him. Once the goal of being F1 champ was achieved it made the decision much easier. I’m really happy for him.

      3. “Been there, Done that”

  2. The only drivers I can see challenging Hamilton over the course of a season would be Alonso, Vettel, Ricciardo or Verstappen.
    What would fans want the most? To see Alonso in a very competitive car? I know I would. But what is that bet that if it does happen, Mercedes all of a sudden are not the best car in the field, and it becomes Red Bull again! Haha :(

    1. Have to be honest, i would laugh very very hard at that

      3rd December 2016, 6:57

      RBR is the team to beat next few seasons. They have literally designed & defined the template for the new, aero -biased formula for the upcoming chassis.
      Mercedes and others got their engine tokens done away with as a trade of but aero is again king.

    3. Some already think RBR will be the car to beat next year. Remains to be seen of course, but I’d like to think FA would love to fight anywhere in the top 3 again for his last chapter in F1.

    4. If Alonso can get out of his contract he would be crazy not to take a Merc contract if it’s offered to him. Though it is a risk to jump to to Merc, the risk of McHonda developing a competitive car in the near future is a bigger risk.

      The problem with an Alonso deal is McLarean won’t be receptive to giving up the driver that once again made a crappy car look decent. The Red Bull drivers are’t likely to go anywhere and likewise for Vettel as Ferrari wasn’t too bad near the end of the season.

      I would think Merc wants a top driver to have a good chance at another constructor’s championship in addition to humbling Hamilton after his latest antics.

      For those who think Merc won’t have an advantage and will be whipped by Red Bull, I think it’s wishful thinking as Merc turned back the wick for reliability towards the end of the season and will solve those issue over the coming months. They still have an advantage I would think.

      Alonso and Hamilton always exceed a cars capabily and will be tough to beat even if RB do manage to be more competitive with Merc. If they put youngsters in that seat chances of a WCC aren’t likely.

  3. What I like about the announcement is that it gives us a loooooooooot to talk about in the few weeks left this year! it’s like 2017 started NOW.

    About his replacement, I guess most of us would LOVE to see Alonso vs Hamilton round 2, and Alonso back in a properly fast car. I know I would. It’d be spectacular in every single way. Also it could well be Alonso’s very last shot, given he’s now the older guy on the grid and his attitude towards F1 as a whole in the last few years.

  4. Yes,yes,yes, it’s a shock but let’s talk about todays other story, the umm err, damn!

  5. Asked Hamilton last year who his ideal team-mates would be (in a three-car team, as that was being mooted around a lot at the time). Said he’d rather have a challenge, and that Alonso, Vettel and Ricciardo were the best drivers, then said Vettel and Ricciardo would be his team-mate picks, because they’re easy-going. I assume he meant easy-going compared to Alonso…

    I know he says he doesn’t have any influence, but Hamilton + Alonso in the same team would be carnage. Would love to see it, but I don’t think either driver would go for it, and I think Mercedes are too smart to even consider putting them back together.

    1. Both drivers matured greatly over the last ten years, became a lot less aggressive (I don’t mean their driving suffered but benefited) and more humble, I think they would work it out, I can’t see Lewis/vettel or Lewis/verstappen, but I think Lewis /Riccardo would be a nice match

      1. HAM + RIC would be great in my opinion. Danny has the speed and experience, while also showing this year that he can handle the pressure of a tough team-mate, especially after being “woken up” mid-season by the KVI / VES switch.

        Also, Red Bull would have Sainz as a great replacement in the bag, and maybe promote a junior in STR or even get Werhlein from Mercedes as part of the deal.

        1. Exactly, I’d love to see sainz in a better car, he’s got so much potential

        2. I think the racing would be good but I wouldn’t wish the mindpain on RIC.

  6. OmarRoncal - Go Seb!!! (@)
    3rd December 2016, 0:45

    That Lewis never changes…to mix his ego with the reality. He says “drivers want to be MY teammate”, no, they won’t go for Lewis, they will go for the Hot Seat Nico is leaving empty. And about that equality he asks for, as if he didn’t have it.
    Maybe now he can choose the mechanics, he has them all to pick from, so then he won’t moan about it the whole season.

    1. Do you really think that he will ever stop moaning. He is the most paid driver; driving for the best racing team ATM; won the world championship twice in a row….he will still complain

    2. @omarr-pepper, @icemangrins Both of you are the moaners. How anyone can fault anything Hamilton said regarding teammates baffles me. He essentially said he doesn’t care who he’s paired with but you whingers still find something to complain about.

      “He says “drivers want to be MY teammate”,” <- Theres nothing of the sort in the article. Putting quotes around it doesn't magicaly make it a legitimate quote.

      1. This is my first complaint of the week…so, technically not a whinger.

        But last week, I was complaining about something. You have to read it in my 10 years later. Sounds good? Now Smile for my snapchat.

      2. At the end he’s quoted as saying:

        “I’m interested to see who would want to be my teammate – and respect anyone that would want to.”

        Not easy to read, but it sounds defensive and like he’s probably somewhat worried, understandably, about what the change will entail, probably less about racing than about the team dynamics. If his relations with Mercedes did sour this year, then it’s not ideal for him to have a new driver in who could fill the vacuum and get the team working around them.

        1. That’s a far cry from: He says “drivers want to be MY teammate”

          1. Yes it is, I didn’t say it wasn’t, I just thought adding the actual quote might help, presuming, maybe a bit wishfully, that people can actually read.

    3. You’re dismissing drivers wanting to be his teammate a bit quickly there. He’s currently the benchmark in F1, truly competitive drivers want to prove themselves and so I can imagine a few of them want to be his teammate to see where they measure up. I’m quite sure Alonso, Ricciardo and Verstappen probably believe they are better and would love the chance to vindicate that belief.

  7. Please Fernando.. Don’t make the mistake of moving now.

    1. I agree, mclaren might be fighting for podiums next year. Can’t see why they won’t be, they came a LONG way in 1 season compared to 2015 and with the drastic changes and continued engine improvements, Mclaren gave the budget and resources to make big gains for 2017….stay Fernando.

      1. Lol, I’ll be damned if McLaren is better than Mercedes within next 5 years.

      2. McLaren had the best engine and their big budget in 2014 and how did that go? They barely outperformed Force India.

        1. Yeah but in 2015 and 2016 they.had “the best” chassis in “slow corners”… Though not sure what corners they had in mind.

          1. They were best when turning into the garage.

    2. @jaymenon10

      As a die hard Alonso fan, I can only pray he gets a shot at the title… And there is no doubt about the fact that the best chances for landing a title is if you’re driving for either Mercedes or Red bull.

      Mclaren Honda has been the most disastrous project I’ve encountered in the sport, and it would be a shame to see a driver like Alonso languish in the lower mid field during the end of his career.

      He should drive for free if he gets that Mercedes seat.

  8. I said before, it would be firewoks if Alonso move to Mercedes. But no, as McLaren fan I want to see him win his last title in McLaren and bring McLaren back to where it belongs. Chances are slim, yes, but I believe no such things are impossible.

    1. If Alonso goes to Merc it is nearly certain McLaren will be up for the title next year and merc will drop o 4th or 5th best team.

      1. My pessimistic thoughts exactly…

  9. Well, that ended the silly is he a worthy champion debate.

    1. Yeah, he chickened out of the challenge for a next title. Not very worthy …

      1. This is another thing I had to contend with on Twitter..

        Ok, so let’s entertain that perception:

        Nico realises Lewis is a better driver. Should he:
        a) Try his luck for another season or two, knowing there’s a strong change he’ll be beaten?


        b) Retire now while he’s happy and spend time being a father?

        I’m sorry, but the smart money is on ‘b’ regardless of your personal feelings towards him…

  10. Ah, I just wish we had the old car numbering system again.
    Lewis would be number “0” right?

    1. Michael Brown (@)
      3rd December 2016, 3:03

      I think 0 goes to the driver who takes the car the defending champion would have driven.

      1. Not really. Hill was two times Number 0 ando Prost and Senna were Number 2. As far as i remember it was uncommon to have a new driver in the Teams “Number One” car while retaining one Driver of the previous Lineup. But i started watching later so might have been neither of them wanting to be Number 0 back then.

      2. @mbr-9, that has become the custom now, although there have been a few instances in the past between 1973 (when it first became the custom for the defending driver to use #1 – before then, numbers were usually allocated at random by the race organisers) and now when a driver used #1 even though he was not the defending WDC.

        In 1974, they decided that instead of allocating No. 1 and 2 to Tyrrell, Lotus, as the winners of the WDC, were allocated those numbers, leading to Ronnie Peterson being given No.1 and Fittipaldi No.2 (even though Fittipaldi had finished ahead of him in the WDC).

        There is also the case of John Watson in the 1985 European GP, who was called up for a race to replace Lauda after he had been injured in the previous race in Belgium. In that case, Watson was also allowed to use No.1 on his car – perhaps because it was just a one off event – rather than being allocated a different number.

    2. There was no hard and fast rule. In that era it was up to the team which driver had which of their allocated pair, but more often than not the lower number indicated the team’s no 1 driver.
      The use of no 0 (pretty much only by Hill) was because neither Prost, nor Senna wanted no 0. Dunno why (superstition?), but I remember Damon being asked about it once and saying that the others didn’t want it.

    3. Lewis would have been number 2. He’d have liked that even less!

  11. To be fair to Hamilton he’s always said the same thing regarding teammates, and I think he’s being genuine. Then again, I don’t think he has the political nous to force a team to listen to him, unlike Vettel or Alonso.

    I can’t see Mercedes going for a big name next year, I think they’ll take someone on a one year contract for 2017 then see who’s available towards the end of the year. The other possibility is they take a chance with a multi-year contract for a #2 driver, maybe they’re tired off all the infighting?

    1. Bottas. On the BBC site:

      Wolff has a long relationship with Bottas as part of his management team and rates him highly. The Finn has impressed in the last four seasons with Williams and would be a low-maintenance choice. He would deliver solid results on track and is calm and would not rock the boat off it.

      1. I think Bottas is by far the most uninspiring choice. To not hammer Felipe the past season or two just isn’t good enough (and that’s not an indictment on Massa – he was a B+ driver whose best days had passed).

        I initially thought he looked like a potential world beater, but he just hasn’t been dominant enough, for me.

        It’s a perfect opportunity to go for an all-star line-up, or use one of your young drivers in Wehrlein or Ocon.

        1. The young drivers present a big risk to the WCC. If they want a gap year or two to get into the VET/ALO/RIC/VES window then I don’t see them picking one (if they’re thinking VET then they need to see how he performs in the new chassis anyway).

      2. How solid would Bottas be if Mercedes are fighting tooth and nail with Red Bull next year? He would be the weakest driver of the 4, and my bet is that he’s not even a race winner.

        Alonso would be the best replacement if they want a driver to really deliver. Plus it will do the sport a lot of good to have 2 top notch wdcs with a fiery past driving for the same team.

    2. Something I’ve been thinking about too @george . I think the choice will be to balance the infighting with the ability to reliably 1-2. So that begs the questio who can do that…
      Alonso. Obvious talent and experience. Infighting a historic certainty..
      Wehrlein. A talent to be sure but with reports of difficulty in the garage and relative inexperience, he may not be ideal for consistent 1-2 finishes. Likely ideal for a number 2 driver though.
      Ricciardo. The best all round package I believe as a second seat

      1. @fletch
        I have the opposite view of Wehrlein, I think he has a pretty big ego and wouldn’t be happy as a number 2. Ocon seems to be more easy-going, but he’s an unknown quantity in terms of talent and could give Hamilton a hard time on that front.

        I think if they want a number 2, Bottas is the best choice. I disagree with @todfod in a way, he might be the weakest on pure pace out of those four drivers but I think he’ll deliver 95% of what the car is capable of week in week out. You’d probably put money on Hamilton beating him, but you’d still expect Bottas to rack up a decent amount of points. Add that to not having a huge ego and rocking the boat like an Alonso/Vettel and he seems a more sensible choice.

        1. Yep I agree he’s a sensible choice. He would deliver certainly. A good battle between teammates makes great F1 though. I hope we get closer racing in 17

  12. Well about from the redbull pair, I can’t see anyone else outpacing Hamilton. His already beaten Alonso in his prime and Vettel seems a shadow of his former redbull days.

    Having said that, I reckon the smart money is on Bottas being bought out of his contract by Mercedes or possibly being loaned out for a 1 year period. Whilst not a A grade driver, he’ll certainty provide stability which Mercedes may need to fend off both Verstappen and Ricciardo in 2017. If Wehrlein didn’t get the Force India drive then I don’t see how he’ll get the Mercedes seat, plus he presents a chance to jeopardise them of retaining the Constructors Title. Bottas’s position is likely his though.

    1. The problem with Bottas moving to Mercedes, let’s say in return for Wehrlein, is that implies a Williams line up of Wehrlein and Stroll. I simply can’t see Williams going for this.

      1. Not ideal but TR have often done well in the midfield with two fresh drivers. From what I can tell, Williams are only positioned to get compensated.

  13. Since everyone’s a bigtime fan of stats, here’s a question – is this the first time an entire round-up has been dominated by a single topic? The linked articles, tweets and COTD all make it a clean sweep.

    1. The cynic in me says look at Post suzuka 14 or pre Hungary 15. Will very likely be Clean sweeps. Would of course make this the least depressing clean sweep so far by Miles.

      1. @mrboerns – :-( you’re probably right. Now, I don’t want to check those round-ups, I’ll just be happy here.

    2. @phylyp On top of that, @keithcollantine the other article about Rosberg has at the moment of writing 411 comments, surely that’s a record.

      1. I remember there was an article with 500+ comments a couple of years ago, but just can’t remember what it was about @xtwl. Multi 21 maybe?

        1. @toiago Ah, if there’s any I either think it would be an article about Multi21, or perhaps the German GP of 2010 although I think this site didn’t have as many users back then.

          1. @xtwl Multi 21 it was. That was a row in which almost all of the articles got huge numbers of comments.

            This one from Germany 2010 also reached 400.

            Only @keithcollantine will have the statistics to answer you correctly!

  14. I wonder if there was a another reason Rosberg retired; Perhaps the Mercedes car for 2017 isn’t as quick as the Red Bull, in which case they might not fight for the championship again. However, he did mention that he couldn’t take another title strain, so perhaps they will. In which case, Mercedes no doubt place a lot of importance of the WCC, and for that, if Red Bull are closer or perhaps even ahead, then they would need 2 very competitive drivers, which may lead them to think it’s too early for Wehrlein. I think that Wehrlein is a good driver, but probably not one that can match and beat Hamilton. If his Interlagos performance is anything to go by, he’ll be slower than Rosberg in wet conditions.

    1. “However, he did mention that he couldn’t take another title strain, so perhaps they will.”

      But then said had he lost, he would’ve carried on next year. This is a very strange decision, which has left the sport & Mercedes both with a blank steer in their faces.

    2. If his Interlagos performance is anything to go by, he’ll be slower than Rosberg in wet conditions.

      You can’t really compare the performance of Werhlein in the rain, in the most aero-handicapped car on the grid, to the Mercedes, which is probably the best one after RBR when it comes to aero.

  15. People seem to be very concerned about Hamilton’s teammate for next season. They say the likes of Wehrlein and Bottas would be too easy for Hamilton. The names that were mentioned most were that of Alonso and Vettel.


    1. spafrancorchamps
      3rd December 2016, 8:33

      You’re right. The problem is, Lewis is so good, no one could see how good Rosberg was. Had he driven besides Vettel, chances are he had become champion already after one of the previous two years.

    2. ColdFly F1 (@)
      3rd December 2016, 10:40

      Pity that caps can ruin a good comment., @sravan-pe.

        1. An upvote/downvote feature would be nice as well, so I don’t have to read though all the Hamilton conspiracies. @keithcollantine

    3. Rosperg was an amazingly fast driver, as fast as the best. That is what made him able to fight Lewis BUT at the same time he had quite mediocre racecraft.
      If Merc were fighting other teams and drivers he would be further behind Lewis but when it comes to dominant car then he could fight him because it was more depended on fast qualy and a good start.

  16. It’s interesting to note that all the driver tweets mentioned here appreciate and respect Rosberg for what he’s doing. While some of them might be thinking a word of thanks to Rosberg for opening up that seat, I believe it also indicates a dream that some drivers harbour – become a champion, and thereafter give up the hectic life of F1 (rather than fade away with or without a championship).

    At the same time, given the number of past F1 stars who keenly follow and attend GPs, it is also likely that at some point they end up missing the thrill and lifestyle. I somehow don’t see Rosberg in this category, and we will probably see him attend only a future Monaco GP.

  17. This, along with the changes to the cars for 2017, is making next year shape up to be very exciting!

  18. I find it strange people are praising him for this. What’s their to be praised? What was so courageous about what he did?

    He walked out on his team just about 4 months after signing a new long term contract. He then states that he would’ve stayed had he lost the championship, but previously said how drained he was from the fight this year.

    I’m sorry, I just don’t see why he’s being praised. If anything what it has done is to add more fuel to the fire for those who said the entire season looked & felt suspicious. He’s 31, just won his first title & about to hit the prime of his career and he just ups and quit. I just don’t get it, I just don’t get the praises being lavished on him. Personally, I think it’s cowardice.

    1. I am so grateful to be merely one of the little people in this world who does not have to be subjected to millions of folks who don’t really know me second guessing my most momentous life decisions and calling names if they do not agree. I’m certain if you thought about it enough you would be glad for that too. Would you like to be called a coward for your life choices? Sometimes it takes more courage to do the unexpected than to try to live up to public expectations.

      I’m happy for his success and if he and his family are happy with his decision, that’s all that really matters.

    2. Some commentators on this site still think F1 drivers are ‘gladiators’ battling it out on the field with blades and axe.

      Those actually here in reality known the opposite is quite true. The average F1 driver is a diva, spoiled princess, who throw anyone in front of the bus to save themselves – including their mechanics and team.

      Rarely do we get actual men out there, which is why drivers like kimi resonate so well with fans.

      Nico is just as guilty as the rest but his decision was a human one, and most likely the toughest decision he’s ever made.

    3. He’s achieved his goal. All he could do is the same again (and still have the p aunt gallery screaming unfair/unworthy/lucky).

  19. Paul Ortenburg
    3rd December 2016, 6:25

    I’d still like to see Sainz get the seat. He was pretty close to equal with Max and with Daniel and Max haven sown up the RedBull seats for the next couple of years he’s wasted at Toro Rosso.

    1. Yeah totally forgot about him, he deserves it so much, he could do great things

      1. spafrancorchamps
        3rd December 2016, 8:37

        Point is, he got demolished by Max. He often had the advantage during qualifying but was nowhere to be seen during the races. How do you expect him to give Lewis a run for his money then?

        The best option is Fernando. And if they can’t get him, Seb or Ocon. But please no Wehrlein. Because, if Mercedes were to be dominant again, I don’t want to see a walk in the park for Hamilton.

    2. This is a very good point. And I agree Rosberg is much more likely to remain distant from it all. Before GP2 he almost chose engineering above motorsport. It wasn’t his true passion. He became world champion, achieved the pinnacle and moved on. He’s a hero to me.

      1. This was meant @phylyp

    3. I honestly think that sainz would be one of the top drivers Mercedes is looking at. He’s been mighty impressive… Far more than Pascal.

  20. Any chance of seeing a F1Fanatic reader poll on Rosberg’s replacement? :)

    I guess there are multiple questions that could be asked: who would you like to see Mercedes hire, who do you think they should hire, who do you think they will hire, etc. Regardless, I’d be interested in seeing what people think around here.

    1. Alonso for me.

  21. So what disicpline against Lewis now ? He wont be sacked for sure.🏁😂😂😂

    1. Wehrlein and Ocon would be an interesting partnership ;)

      1. A great way of making a front runner a mid fielder

    2. OmarRoncal - Go Seb!!! (@)
      3rd December 2016, 14:01

      @smudgersmith1 as a Solomon tale says, I would make him form the two mechanic teams, and then Meecedes picks the best one formed and gives it to the new driver.

    3. Give him ALO.

  22. “I’ve never been a driver to request (in regards to teammates). I know a lot of the other drivers – Sebastian (Vettel) and Fernando (Alonso) – make sure it is in their contract.” – This is way i’m a big Hamilton fan, he doesn’t care who his teammate will be unlike Alonso and Vettel who demanding No1 status. Hamilton will own both Alonso and Vettel with ease, especially Alonso who’s just plain slow in quali, bad in the rain and simply not good but overhyped by media. I expect Vettel to be more of a challenge

    1. Plain slow in quali? Have you watched alonsos qualis this year? I don’t know if you remembered he drove a McLaren this year

      1. to be fair though according to ron he drove the best chassis on the grid and listening to some people, the pretty much greatest engine. Funny how to onlookers this Beast disguised as a total Heap of Junk. I hear it’s called the “Millennium Falcon Bluff”

    2. @revelations
      Hamilton never asked who his teammate will be for the simple fact that he has never been in a position to do it unlike other drivers.
      Hamilton signed a 5 year deal with McLaren back in 2007 when he was a rookie, then when he moved to Mercedes and signed his first contract Nico’s seat was never in doubt, and from their first WCC Mercedes have the upper hand in negotiation, they even made it clear (Toto Wolf if i’m not wrong) that if Hamilton won’t extend his contract they will get Fernando Alonso.

    3. Where’s the evidence to show he’s bad in the rain? Oh you dont have any.

      What did he do to button in brazil? Button who’s supposed to be one of the masters of the wet? And silverstone? How was his pace there? Sure he spun but so did vettel no?

      People who we’re watching at Silverstone from the grandstands were amazed at how much speed Alonso was able to carry through copse. He was faster than anyone through there in a McLaren Honda. That’s nothing but a testament to his driving ability

  23. Yesterday one of the first things came to my mind, that how hard will be this retirement for him.
    Even Damon Hill admitted, the lack of racing left a huge vacuum after itself. It’s a bit like drugs. Of course I don’t see him returning to drive in F1 (sadly), as the longer and longer calendars would mean even greater drain and taxing for the people with family.
    But I wouldn’t be surprised to see him back in a series with way fewer races (WEC I look at you) after one or two years, If a top drive would be available there. You just can’t put down a drug like adrenaline that easily.

  24. Two years ago to the day Verstappen caused the superlicence change. Also the day today he won the Action of the Year award for the third time running and the Personality of the Year award for the second time. Unique.

    1. spafrancorchamps
      3rd December 2016, 8:41

      Problem is that everyone can vote.. and Dutch voters are the majority for DOTD, probably for this contest too.

      Looking at all the nominees for overtake of the year, there were many better moments to choose from.

      1. Personality of the year is voted for by the media (although clearly not Keith ;-)) so how that’s a Dutch thing I don’t know

  25. Fernando needs to immediately publish a video: “GP2 engines”, “drives like a truck”, “Japanese junk”, “This team an affront to the great Bruce McLaren”, the worst possible insults, and get himself fired from McLaren.

  26. Roth Man (@rdotquestionmark)
    3rd December 2016, 8:25

    Does everything Lewis say have to have a little bitter passive aggressive barb in it at some point. I really don’t like it, there’s just no need. Whether he’s correct or not it’s just a sign of a lack of integrity. Haven’t been this excited for a new season for a long long time. Please be Alonso, Ham in the Mercs vs Ric, Max in an equally matched Red Bull. Mercedes to have a slight advantage on power circuits, RB to have a slight aero advantage. I can but dream…………

    1. Agree with your post.

    2. Your problem is his integrity @rdotquestionmark. He’s simply overt about his competitiveness, nothing ‘passive’ or ‘bitter’ about it. I don’t think you understand what integrity is; it’s not political correctness.

      Anyway I agree about Alonso, and good to see Bernie does too. Nando has integrity too, unlike Hamilton’s outgoing teammate. It would be war, but waged honestly.

      1. The guy who parked his car in the pitbox so that his team mate wouldn’t get a go at a qualifying lap has integrity?
        Nice one.

        People doubt Rosberg even after being cleared by stewards. But Alonso whose actions were deliberate is the one having integrity :)


        1. He was 25 @evered7, a 2x wdc superstar being upstaged and ripped off by the newbie. Circumstances alter cases. One episode doesn’t necessarily define a person, especially when generally he’s always been very fair on track.

          Everybody knows Mirabeau was deliberate, and premeditated, then Spa and the others since. It’s not Alonso who was penalised 3x this year for running cars off the track or colliding with them, straightlining the apex.

          1. Alonso already has two WDC yet doesn’t want to give up on a opportunity to become a 3X champion. Sees his team mate as a threat, tries to block him illegally. Now Rosberg is fighting for his first championship and is the first time he is in a WC level car. Then his moves are justified as well, right? Even if we consider your view that he was doing it deliberately.

            ‘Everyone knows’ might be taking it too far. For he has been cleared by the people who are in charge here.

            Alonso in his Ferrari years has shown that he will do what is required to get to the end result. So it is not only the McLaren days we are talking here.


          2. When I say everyone knows Mirabeau was deliberate @evered7, I mean things like a mainstream F1 correspondent saying ” Rosberg who has twice been penalised this year for driving into an opponent, and by general consensus intentionally went off in Monaco qualifying two years ago to stop Hamilton setting a time.

            It was hushed up for son-of-Keke in Monaco, of course, so Daniel Johnson could only say it because he was leaving. But Derek Warwick said that Rosberg would have been sent to the back of the grid if he’d been found guilty, like Schumacher. Tho it was premeditated, making it actually worse than Rascassegate.

            Alonso is hard but fair, a different thing altogether.

        2. And the other half of the story which you conveniently forgot to mention is…?

  27. Whoever partners Hamilton I think people will change their perception of Rosberg and his fast and consistent driving. Whatever other problems the pairing gave MB we have come to expect that both drivers will deliver (in part because of the car) and they have. There is a tendency to think that 1-2 is a must and an easy deliverable, Rosberg’s statements underline how much pressure there was to meet this “simple” expectation race in race out over a number of seasons.
    Whilst posting would also say that his retirement statement was very professional and statesmanlike.

    1. I would expect a 1-2 is the least any team expects of its drivers. Relative of course to their potential against other teams.

  28. Wehrlein already putting himself in that Mercedes in his tweet. That s a power move :D

    1. @tango

      I can’t wait to see his Paul du resta moment when he doesn’t get the seat.

  29. I’ll be disappointed if it’s anyone other than Max. It seems unlikely, but that would surely be the most incendiary partnership since Alonso/Hamilton. I get it that team would probably balk at the prospect, but this is a show for us and the teams would do well to remember that!

    1. I’d be surprised if Max was interested and I’d be surprised if FA wasn’t the most interested of all, as I’d be surprised if he thinks he’s closer to getting back to the top by staying at Mac, than going to Mercedes, with his few remaining years in F1. And yes, please Toto, keep up with being the racers you have shown to be, and put that top driver in that top ride like the world deserves to see.

  30. “You need someone with good values coming in and representing the team in a positive way”

    Like starting rumors the team is sabotaging their car or driver? Or refusing team orders? Stuff like that?

    1. He means not being a serial cheat @balue.

      1. @lockup Exactly. Another thing of his that emphasizes the ridiculous hypocrisy of the statement. There’s more too.

        1. No that didn’t quite come off I’m afraid @balue

          1. The only thing that didn’t come off here was whatever you were trying @lockup.
            Backfired just as Hamilton’s statement did.

    2. I used to be on the fence when it came to Lewis. I like his tenacity and fighting spirit, and i rate him the best driver in F1, but lately his comments and attitude are pure BS. He said during the press conference that he was not surprised by Nico’s decision because this was the first time Nico won in 18 years against him.

      It was like: “Yeah, he’s achieved his life goal to beat me once so it was natural for him to retire”. While i do admit that probably Nico’s decision was caused in part by the constant pressure and humiliations Lewis put him through these few last seasons, it’s still a pretty distasteful thing to say.

  31. I am still completely spreadeagled by this. Rosberg has now said he likely wouldn’t have retired had he not won the title. That is an extraordinary thing to say. Was F1 a checklist for him, and the title the last empty box? Was the only motivation to race that last black mark on his record? How, when the trade-off between an intense sporting career and his young family was clearly causing him concern, could he justify continuing no matter what the title result?

    It is a personal decision, and no one has the right to judge or criticize, but I hope it wasn’t a decision taken lightly. He has walked away from the defining chapter of his life, and come Melbourne, when the lights go out, I hope so much he doesn’t come to regret it.

    1. You’re thinking this the wrong way around in terms of causal chain. He decided to retire, started thinking about retiring, once he realised he might be world champion. Being world champion isn’t what caused him to retire, it gave him food for thought he wouldn’t normally have had when he was still gunning for it. He wouldn’t have retired had he not been world champion because he wouldn’t even have considered or contemplated it. That’s the difference.

      1. @hahostolze

        causal chain

        …this is why I love this site; it’s like being in a Humean philosophy seminar!

        That is not what I infer from what Nico said on-stage at the gala. From that I would say that whilst he first thought of retirement when the title became his to lose in Suzuka, but it was realized when he crossed the line in Abu Dhabi, and that, had Lewis overhauled him in the interim, he would not have retired. He didn’t win the title in Suzuka, so if the decision to retire bore any relationship to the title result, which clearly it did, the decision was finalized in Abu Dhabi. And if he hadn’t have won in Suzuka, hadn’t that crucial points edge that took it out of Lewis’ hands, would retirement have crossed his mind at all prior to Abu Dhabi, win or lose?

        I know we are speculating as to the chain of Nico’s pathology which is a tautologically superfluous pursuit, but if my interpretation rings true then there is some highly unorthodox priorities at play. To continue racing solely for the sake of a single unchecked box is unusual for a driver in his prime. It’s like discarding your copy of Assassins’ Creed once you’ve bumped off Robert de Sablé. Did you not enjoy playing it? Do you not want to play it again? Saying that you want to retire to be with your daughter in her precious formative years makes perfect sense. Saying that you wouldn’t have prioritized being with her had you not proclaimed an outstanding sporting credential doesn’t. But there are more pieces of the puzzle which will no doubt emerge.

        1. I think you are correct that we may find out more as time goes on. After all, it took a lifetime of 31 years, including 25 years of racing, to come to this decision. Having a family has changed the perspective of many throughout the ages. Having achieved the life long goal of being F1 champ now in the books weighed against the opportunity to be with family made the decision easier. Not achieving that goal and retiring would have been giving up one dream. I think it was something he had to do or at least give it every possible chance before stopping. I don’t think he could have done otherwise. Now he has the best of both dreams.

          I too am still stunned by his decision. But, I think I respect him now more than ever because he was able to live his dream and retire on his own terms to live out his other dream with his family. How many of us are able to do that?

          A parting thought, some drivers live only to race. Others love racing, but struggle with the relentless demands of time away from loved ones, the commercial contracts, lack of privacy and even the constant realization of possible injury or death.

          1. Miss Diagnosed
            4th December 2016, 0:23

            The retirement, while not the norm, I get.
            What I need is somebody to explain Trump.

  32. I just thought that Brundle may have put his finger on it. For some people, adrenaline and tension means life. And for some it is something they must pay to be able to enjoy other facets of the thing. Rosberg does not seem at ease in situations requiring quick decisions, he prefers to have things premeditated; he looked like the preasure took its toll on him.
    I also had another association. I know of people who started to do something as children because their parents created an environment leading to it. Not that they would force the child to do it, but children can be influenced a lot. They work on it sicerely and believe that it is their way, then they start winning, and sometimes it happens that they sudenly realize that the victories bring them much less than what they though they would. They realize that their heart tells them that there are other things in life that would be more fulfilling, they just did not have a chance to discover it because their lives had been full of “the other thing”.
    I do not know whether this is what happened to Rosberg, but this theory does fit in with what we saw of him. Why did he stay in F1? Because it is a great life, victories are sweet, and because it is extremely hard to leave something at which you are good at (which he was) and into which invested so much of yourself; and perhaps because he is not a quitter.
    Now this all may be completely off the mark, but if it hits close, then now was the right time to ask what really does make his life full.

    1. Read Andre Agassi’s autobiography for really good insight into the psychology you are proposing.

  33. Has anyone read Kevin Eason’s article in The Times? Kevin Nonsense would be a better name for him.

    Lewis Hamilton lost the battle but won the war. He dominated Nico Rosberg from karting to the ultimate in Formula 1 and when the German finally won his world championship, the strain was so great that he had to walk away from the sport

    This is favoritism beyond belief. One can quantify the pressure Hamilton put on Rosberg as much as one wishes but Rosberg being a gentleman and thinking about his family as being more precious is what made him quit. He knows very well indeed that on his day he can at least take the fight to Lewis Hamilton.

    1. @sravan-pe Some people on this site do better than that so I’m not surprised some even reach professional journalism, how sad that may be.

    2. I like Rosberg but that Kevin Eason quote is the first thing I thought when I heard Rosberg was retiring. “Wanting to spend more time with family” is the standard spiel when sports personalities retire before their time even when it’s for other reasons.

    3. Rosberg being a gentleman and thinking about his family as being more precious is what made him quit.

      Except that’s not what has happened. He got a massive dose of luck this season, snatched his WDC and bailed on the 1500 strong team 6 months into a 2 year contract. If it was about his family he wouldn’t have said he’d have kept racing if he didn’t win the WDC

      1. If it was about his family he wouldn’t have said he’d have kept racing if he didn’t win the WDC

        Think as if you’re in Rosberg’s shoes and if you still didn’t understand you’ll probable never understand.

        1. I understand perfectly. This is Rosbergs rankings in terms of importance

          1) WDC
          2) his Family

          I don’t need to put myself in his shoes he has said this is the case.

  34. Why would Rosberg stop suddenly? It is obvious he loves his wife and daughter and is leaving F1 for his family. But also I think he is leaving what he was not enjoying.

    The Mercedes was such a great car that with a lesser or more normal teammate he would have won the title with a lot less hardwork and stress. I feel he had to sacrifice everything for the past three years to beat Lewis and he was not enjoying that.

    On top of that, no matter what he does people would put him down compared to Lewis. Which is a shame because in addition to beating Lewis this year he also beat Schumacher over 3 years and no one can deny Schumacher was a legend even in his twilight years.

    Also he probably felt Mercedes did not appreciate his talent and hardwork, they kept offering him 1 and 2 year contracts. They also strongly supported Lewis in the Spa incident.

    Rosberg is such a mentally strong character that he put up with all this to come back and beat Lewis. Great respect and I think it is time to walk away from this nonsense.

    Mercedes should be worried, Rosberg worked very hard (for his personal title charge), which helped them develop the car with a very fast driver. Who do they get now? Alonso or Vettel are going to be like Diva’s. They will not want to do more work than Hamilton nor will they be absolute team player like Rosberg. I believe their best bet would be Bottas, unless Wherline convinces them that he will be a workhorse and not act high and mighty.

  35. “Hamilton won’t influence choice of Rosberg’s replacement”


    Hamilton will do everything he can think of to influence choice of Rosberg’s replacement if it doesn’t go his way.

    1. Which language dictionary are you using there? It looks like Monty Python’s Hungarian Phrasebook. There are more accurate books available now…

    2. @bobec I agree. while he will not have have a direct clause with Mercedes to influence. He will starts his theatrics, mind games and drama to do that.

  36. I honestly believe that bernie needs to step in and advise Mercedes to take a driver that will do the sport some good.

    Formula 1 needs an action packed rivalry and I couldn’t think of a better teammate to Hamilton than Alonso.

  37. Hmm do you guys think would rosberg have retired if he had won the title in 2014?

  38. More i read about it, more i think it is a very waek move.
    No way in hell Lewis would have the same treatment if he quited to “spend time with his family”.

  39. Lewis has become super arrogant and brash nowadays with his comments and behavior. He must remember that he had a great car so far which gave him all the glory. He is talented but in my close to 30 years of watching F1 I have not seen anyone go so far on the “talent ego” front.

    Just like Jenson smoked him out of McLaren with his strong drives, I hope Jenson comes back to Mercedes to do the same to bring him back to earth. As of now one of my big motivation to watch F1 is to see Lewis’s teammate beat him fair and square. Lewis is the drama king. When beaten he will put up big theatrics around his loss which will be all the more fun to watch.

    1. Hamilton did not leave McLaren because of Button.

      1. He learned from Button the best way to a WDC.

    2. The fact that there people like you around makes knowing this black British driver is dominating f1 so much sweater. Hamilton whoop button 2-1 and rosberg 4-1… Alonso call it equal. Enjoy the sport, don’t get caught up in the personal drama these guys are humans with their myriads of faults and success!

  40. First: I am not part of the pro-HAM or con-HAM camp, really. This is my first time “talking” about this.
    But Lewis did miss a great opportunity to show a different side this Friday. Three things irked me a lot:

    1. Not a surprise for him that Nico would quit. Reason: after beating me for the first time in 18 years, he needed to stop to make it last. Making Nico’s retirement about him. It might even be true that to some extent being Lewis’ teammate made the decision easier for Nico, but Lewis is the wrong person to bring that up, it sounds honest, but still somewhat self-centered and a little cocky.

    2. Seb and Fernando have clauses, I don’t. You just had to say that, didn’t you? Making it all about him once again, and about his “no fear of anyone” and “the others are not as confident, hence those clauses”. There was no need to mention that, at all.

    3. Equal treatment. Still being a sore loser. He didnt win the championship. Ok. Reliability issues were a good part of the reason (although I wouldn’t go as far as some as to assume he would have been WDC without them, seeing that Nico would have raced differently in the last 4 races), yes. But then always indicating that he didn’t win because his team wanted the other guy to win (and he has been saying this for quite some weeks now without spelling it out), even right after his rival’s retirement, is misplaced and misguided, at the very least.

    1. I agree. It seems like the WDCs have gone to his head and he feels entitled now.

      1. @robbie I’m not disagreeing with any of the above, but how can having 3 WDCs and a considerable career record not make you feel entitled. That’s not exactly misplaced confidence is it? The problem here appears to be arrogance. Personally I don’t have a problem with arrogance, in any field, as long as it is backed up with an actual show of superiority.

        Similarly with @magon4, I would have preferred a more erudite or articulate response from Lewis here, it shows either blind arrogance or, that there is a fragile ego behind all that bravado. Possibly something to be exploited by other drivers – or indeed the media and F1 fans. I know if I were up against Lewis, I would definitely play the psychological game, to try and disturb his game on track.

        1. @psynrg I think for me entitlement in this case also refers to his attitude that if he doesn’t have 100% reliability during the races he must therefore be being conspired against. Arrogance, entitlement, fragile ego…I’m not looking to split hairs with these words. The bottom line for me is I dislike his attitude and his treatment toward the team that has brought him so much. He is not my cup of tea and the numbers, just as with MS, don’t matter to me. LH is willing to dump on his team in a heartbeat, and that’s a huge turnoff.

  41. Sviatoslav (@)
    4th December 2016, 11:13

    Lie, lie, lie some more.
    Lewis isn’t a team player – he does only what is good for him.
    For example, Lewis never let Rosberg pass him. And Nico is a team player – Hamilton must thank Rosberg for a gifted win in Monaco this year.

    So, when Mercedes lie: “We need a team player”, we must read “You are the second racer and must let Lewis pass whenever we want. But Lewis will never let you pass. And, BTW, Lewis can do WHATEVER he wants. And you – just shut up and be second.” Lewis tells the same thing.

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