“And one thing is clear: Vettel needs to retire at least once, otherwise it’s over.”
“Ferrari has got a momentum going.”
“If it stays like this the gap will become huge – alarming.”
These quotes are taken from a recent conversation between Mercedes non-executive chairman Niki Lauda and Austria’s largest newspaper the Krone.
Is the Mercedes / Hamilton relationship under stress?
I am trying hard not to over think things, but sometimes we see and hear things that in the moment we shake off, but in the end, when it is all put together it starts me wondering.
Hamilton’s radio transmissions have, (since the first evidence of Ferrari’s renewed contention for poles, points and podiums) made me feel that the pressure is on. This would to be expected, but I have detected a tone of question from Hamilton to his team and their race management. It is not unusual for other drivers but I feel Hamilton wears his heart on his sleeve, and in his voice there is sort of questioning at the end of the sentence that my wife uses when I have failed to meet her expectations.
This public statement from Lauda is, in any type of business not the style that a director would deliver if they were keen to keep morale up during testing times. He could of answered such political questions in other – “not giving an answer ways”, and usually does. I admit 20 odd points was huge years ago, but we have barely touched the European series of the formula and he is in effect writing off Mercedes chances. It is simply too early to risk making relations and morale worse, unless he has a reason. In all my years of F1 Niki always has a reason for everything. Question is what?