Lewis Hamilton, Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes W08, Silverstone, 2017

Hamilton not missing rival Rosberg

2017 Formula 1 Season

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Lewis Hamilton suggested that he is not missing former rival Nico Rosberg as he looks ahead to his first season at Mercedes alongside Valtteri Bottas.

Speaking at the media launch of the Mercedes W08 at Silverstone, Hamilton admitted however that it may feel somewhat ‘strange’ not having his former team mate in the garage this season.

“It’s definitely going to feel strange being in the garage and seeing someone else in the car,” says Hamilton. “But one day, when I leave, another driver will come along and initially, perhaps, it’ll feel strange too. But you soon get used to what you have.

Mercedes W08, Silverstone, 2017
Pictures: New Mercedes launched
“I don’t think I’ve ever missed a team mate in my life. There’s always another one who takes their place.”

And with Valtteri Bottas the one to take the place of world champion Rosberg, Hamilton says he is excited to work alongside a new driver for 2017.

“Valtteri seems to have settled in quite comfortably already in a short space of time and now he’s working really hard with all the engineers,” says Hamilton. “There’s a lot of positive energy with him in general, so I’m excited to work with him.”

With the motorsport media assembled at the Silverstone circuit for the Mercedes launch, Hamilton also took the opportunity to expand on recent comments about telemetry sharing between drivers in the sport.

“My job, when I arrive at the track, is always to get out there and exploit our car in the best way that I can and how I can discover that myself – I feel,” explains Hamilton.

“But the way that the sport is now, you can look at your team mate, you get to see the data and compare your data to it. If you see that there are improvements in their driving style, you can adapt to it.

“I just feel that to make it harder for us drivers, they should remove that. Because that means we need to rely on our own data – compare your own lap to your lap before. You may not know where you’re losing time, but the other guy does. I think that just makes it more of a challenge for a driver.

“Ultimately the best drivers will always be able to either get there faster or find something new faster than the others.”

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

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32 comments on “Hamilton not missing rival Rosberg”

  1. Hamilton is acting like he’s never once in his life looked over at his teammate’s data. What a joke.

    1. Of course he has, cos that’s the norm. But he would prefer if it’s not shared for sake of better competition. It’s that simple if you don’t try to fit it into your own narrative.

    2. Of course he has– the telemetry he tweeted at Spa included his traces and Button’s (and would have been pretty pointless if it hadn’t).

      On the other hand, Hamilton has demonstrated that he can learn a track, learn it quickly, and learn it well– for him to put all that effort into figuring out what the exact braking points are for that day, and where the imperfections in the track that are going to throw the car off balance, etc., and then have the team just hand that data to the teammate– that’s got to be irritating.

      In Malaysia 2014, Hamilton was 17+ seconds ahead of Rosberg. Once Rosberg got his copy of the “Drive Like Lewis Hamilton” book, that gap vanished at the next race.

      1. And considering that Rosberg won the previous race with a 25s advantage, we can only assume that Hamilton would do it with 40+s advantage.

        I remember that and it was something really. And on this malaysian win he also used less fuel than Rosberg.

        1. I think too, all the teams have sophisticated ways of determining how a certain driver…let’s say the fastest one on Friday, or the pole sitter, gained time here or there. I don’t think it is just a teammate that can gleen things from how any one driver did what he did on a certain lap or in a certain session.

          1. it has been reported by someone from Mercedes F1 garage side in another forum, that Rosberg is the guy with checking all the numbers, and try and copy them rather than talk to his garage on how to improve things… it is also mentioned that ham gets along well with garage people, ros not so much…

          2. @mysticus I doubt it. LH is the one that spent last year accusing his team of siding with Nico, so…

          3. @robbie I doubt it! But i said something different, since you mentioned it, LH didnt accuse the team, he accused his bosses indirectly for a few things! One being garage change, two being his car has been the sole sour lemon among all Mercedes PU, rightly so he pointed unlikely dices rolling only on his side. Not forget, Spain, Rosberg push Ham aggressively towards outside of the track, we all know the results, yet some of his bosses accused Ham for diving, rather than Ros who made a mistake and tried to cover it aggressively! Also in another incident, Ros did the same, he got off super lightly by his bosses. Ros also being helped on radio while ham being denied, also ros’s requests at final race being entertained while ham’s chances have been ignored and even threatened by the same idiot bosses! So yeah, even though ham didnt say it directly, his bosses showed it and proven him publicly!

    3. He’s saying he does, but he’d rather not. We’re always talking about how F1 competitiveness is at least 90% based on the car, well this is one way to bring the drivers’ talent back to the fore a little.

  2. Hamilton is correct in keeping the advantage he gains in prepping a car through his talent, knowledge and experience. Why give it up?

    1. Why give it up? Because it is a team, and they’re spending way too much money fielding two cars to be shutting one driver out from another, either way. If there wasn’t a WCC, sure I can see it, but it is not an individual sport about individual drivers, and I just can’t see a team sacrificing Constructor points while their two drivers try to hide everything from each other.

      1. But yet no one cared when Alonso & Schumacher’s teammates were used as test mules so as to benefit them. Then, not the team.

        It’s nothing but hypocritical statements.

        1. no one cared when Alonso & Schumacher’s teammates were used as test mules so as to benefit them

          That’s not true at all, I remember plenty of complaints about Irvine and Barrichello’s subservience at Ferrari.

          1. Jonny Herbert has a thing or two to say about Flavio Briatore surrounding his being a team mate to Schumacher as well. Being told one day that the team is like a family and the next that Schumacher won’t share his data, but, will be looking at yours…

            We know Hamilton has used information from his team mates telemetry and he has actually asked for information over the team radio. He’s nothing more than a hypocrite!

          2. @Maddme

            Where did Lewis say he has never used his teammates data?

            He’s merely stating that he’d rather that not happen and let each driver do it unaided. So where exactly is he being hypocritical? Or have you just deliberately decide to ignore that and just go straight after him?


            They might’ve been upset with RB and Irvine, but they’d never criticise Schumacher himself.

          3. @kgn11 I think you couldn’t be more wrong with your Schumacher comment. Millions had a problem with the extreme one-sided behaviour at Ferrari. See Austria 02 for the worst example of what is so wrong about a driver contracted not to race in the pinnacle of racing. And that is still one driver getting another’s data…not both drivers hiding everything from each other as LH would have it.

            LH hasn’t said he doesn’t take a teammate’s data, and claims he’d rather no data sharing, but approaches it from the viewpoint that he is the most naturally gifted driver and therefore shouldn’t have to share. So…not entirely a noble, better for F1 kind of idea. Moreso, better for him, and not better for advancing both cars on a team that needs to find it’s way up to WCC level.

  3. of course he doesn’t, was too much competition for him

  4. I get what LH is saying, but it seems to me he is just thinking in terms of the individual battle for the WDC, and is not taking into account the need for the whole team, which includes another car and driver, to advance and stay ahead of the competition.

    What he is saying works if it is just he and a teammate in dominant cars running away from the field, like it has been, but I really find it hard to imagine any team whose first goal must be to get to the top, allowing their drivers to shut each other out of their own data. They need to be working together to advance the car anyway it takes, such is the expense of being in F1, and the difficulty of finding those last crucial tenths of seconds to be the best.

    I’m a bit surprised he is saying that ‘now’ you can do this. Data sharing has been going on for years. It might happen faster now, due to faster than ever computers, but whether it’s immediately in the car or afterwards in the pits, it’s been happening all along.

    I like the purist side of what he is saying but I think even he knows that it is not the reality other than for a team that is so far ahead they can afford their drivers to be strictly rivals, the car not needing so much R&D. Anybody not leading the WCC or WDC chase has more than just a rivalry to worry about so they need their drivers both figuring out how the car can be hustled around the track quicker, even if one driver has to adapt. At the next track it might be the other driver that finds the best setup first. As Hakkinen said the other day, studying data is one thing but executing is another.

    1. When Lewis wins, does the team not also wins?

      1. The issue is that is can easily turn into a “IF Lewis wins” instead of a “when …” Kng11. The team is far better off with having two drivers who both do their best job, both learn from each other to improve and be the best out there.

        Just look at the last few years how well it worked for them.

      2. @kgn11 I would say that on average a team would win less if the drivers weren’t working together to advance the car. LH seems to think he would win more than his teammate if he didn’t have to give away his ‘naturally’ gained work. But that’s not teamwork. Or that if a driver isn’t naturally gifted, like he likes to point out he is, then he doesn’t belong in F1. How exactly would F1 ever achieve a grid of only ‘naturally’ gifted…and define that…and then who could even imagine a grid of teams hiding data from their two drivers.

        There’s a hint of purist in what he is saying, as I have defended elsewhere here, but there is also more than a hint of self-serving commentary on LH’s part under the guise of ‘better for F1 or the fans.’

        1. @Robbie
          Yeah, your idea is definitely not unrealistic at all. Especially from a team WCC perspective. From a WDC perspective, though it’s gotta be draining.

  5. I do think Bottas will come up to speed quickly and perhaps, hopefully, be a thorn in Hamiltons side. This always makes for a better show.

  6. Bit of a clickbait headline no?

      1. “Hamilton not missing rival Rosberg” = Hamilton glad to see the back of Rosberg.

        “I don’t think I’ve ever missed a team mate in my life. There’s always another one who takes their place.” = Hamilton content to move on.

        A play of words. Your title is perhaps factually correct but can be easily taken out of context.

        1. You do realise you give your own explanation to the two sentences in the article, then explain they’re different.

          Well, obviously, since they’re your interpretation.

          When the answer to “Do you miss Rosberg?” is “I don’t think I’ve ever missed a team mate in my life.” Keith paraphrases to Hamilton not missing Rosberg. That’s 100% correct.

          If you say that means Hamilton is glad to see the back of Rosberg, those are your words, and I’m reasonably confident that Lewis himself would not agree to that interpretation.

  7. In hindsight Lewis should have copied Nico’s clutch and start settings. lol

    1. Why? It’s not like Nico didn’t have his equal share of bad starts. But wait, he did….😏

      1. Ah…no, he didn’t.

        1. @Robbie
          True, but he did have enough bad starts, to have unreliable information in his setup of the clutch.

  8. Lewis has had ten years in formula one. He should know that some things he says will always be given a spin and misinterpreted.
    This comment about data sharing is a good example – soon as you heard it, you knew the media would be making hay with it.
    Alonso has already aimed a barb at Lewis, saying ‘maybe had he been looking at Nick’s data he would not have lost the world championship’.
    In the interview he had, he’s said he ‘doesn’t miss any former teammate’. Iran obvious to see where that’s going to go, with Nico clearly ready – given recent reports of his comments in the media – to respond and keep throwing barbs.
    As a Lewis fan, I wish he would just let his driving do the talking – and he’s the best on that grid when driving, too. It’s better for people to dislike you because you said nothing, than for them to twist your comments and turn you into this ogre.

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