There are drivers who loathe testing Formula One cars and others who realise the necessity of doing so. Niki Lauda tells how he and Enzo argued because the Ferrari founder had recruited Carlos Reutemann as a test driver, something Lauda had previously been responsible for as well as being the team’s front line racing driver.
Eventually, Enzo relented, and Niki resumed his testing duties.
There were a number of raised eyebrows at the recent test in Austria when Lewis Hamilton was absent having been slated to do one of the days driving. Hamilton then posted a tweet of him ‘hanging out’ in Monaco with the world renowned musician Pharrell.
— Lewis Hamilton (@LewisHamilton) June 23, 2015
Lewis had asked Mercedes to be ‘excused’ from the Austrian test and so Nico Rosberg replaced him racking up 117 laps and setting the fastest time on the circuit which saw the German driver defeat Hamilton in the previous weekends GP.
Mercedes ran a fairly detailed aero evaluation programme and Rosberg commented, “It definitely helps me being in the car today, but Lewis is going to take the same set-up, so it’s just that I’ve done the job for both of us in the sense.
“It’s the team that learns the most out of the day, but of course I learn a few bits and small things which is always useful.”
Lewis Hamilton’s commitment to being prepared as best he can was recently questioned before the Spanish GP. The World Champion had been travelling the world and arrived back in Brackley just a day before he was due to leave for Barcelona.
Lewis was beaten by Rosberg in the resulting Spanish GP.
Hamilton’s attitude when he doesn’t win has also come under scrutiny, both Damon Hill and David Croft of SKY have suggested Hamilton’s ‘surly’ behaviour is not becoming of a world champion.
Yesterday the reason for Lewis absence from the Austrian test was revealed in Silverstone.
“I had some doctor check-ups that needed to get done, it was very important,” Hamilton told Sky Sports F1. “It felt more important than the test.”
Lewis has struggled with his starts recently, being beaten off the line to the first corner in Austria despite having pole position. Hamilton has revealed that a ‘fault’ has been detected by the team and should be rectified for this weekend’s race in the Northamptonshire countryside.
“I was very much in touch with everyone at the test, I got all the information on what was tested. Things like the starts, they went through the sequence to find out what happened at the start in the last race,” he added. “They did the same thing in the test and found an issue so they rectified that.”
A number two is always handy, but practice makes perfect and unless Hamilton beats Rosberg this weekend, the critics will once again round on Lewis for his preparation and alleged lack of focus.