Ted Kravitz has been around the F1 paddock for decades and to be fair is one of SkyF1’s better pundits. His grid walk with Anthony Davidson in Imola put regular Martin Brundle, absent this weekend, to shame.
There was no celebrity hunting for inane comments on a sport they know nothing about, just insight after insight to the moments the drivers experience before the start of the race.
Davidson as an ex-F1 driver was Ted’s grid walk sidekick and provided invaluable insight into how the teams prep the car in those final minutes before the lights go out.
Well done Sky F1.
Less well done Sky F1, was the girlie double act anchoring the weekend show. Neither have the appropriate depth of knowledge or capability to ask the tough questions or understand the complexities around the incidents during the race.
Rachael Brooks of Sky would be a far better option for ‘female anchor’ for the weekend. IMHO.
However, in the Sky F1 feature called “The Notebook”, Ted Kravitz was brutally honest about Hamilton’s current demise and future in F1.
Kravitz rhetorically asked, “Where does Lewis go from here. Clearly he’s annoyed. Is he thinking about the future. Clearly he likes things going right, he likes the fighting, he likes being on the podium. He’s clearly looking for the 8th world championship.”
From an impartiality perspective, Kravitz, he has no axe to grind and is fair to all F1 participants, verging on the ‘over nice’. Yet he isn’t scared of tackling the big issues and asking the difficult questions.
The most shocking comment he made during The Notebook was, “Has he [Hamilton] tired of the grind of Formula 1. Definitely by now.”
“Does he need Formula 1…. That’s an open question”, added Kravitz.
Ted then went off piste and kind of meandered and appeared to reconsider his thoughts as he spoke.
“It wouldn’t surprise me if, do you know? What….. clearly he considered retirement”
On the issue of a Hamilton retirement from F1, Toto Wolff has been open about this prospect for Lewis Hamilton. During the period the Brit went dark on social media for 2 months following his defeat in Abu Dhabi, Wolff repeatedly claimed Hamilton may not be back on the grid for 2022.
This was in hindsight clearly PR to force the FIA to sack race director Massi, but if we consider the prospects of Mercedes producing a championship winning car in the next two years, the Hamilton retirement option is becoming even more likely.
Kravitz surmises Lewis’ only chance of another WDC is with Mercedes. “Can he change teams No”.
Clearly Red Bull and Ferrari will be the front runners for the next two years and the door is closed to Lewis joining either of these teams. Budget caps and wind tunnel restrictions will significantly hamper Mercedes from buying their way out of their current predicament.
So Lewis is getting obliterated by his team mate. He has a contract for another year with Mercedes who have little chance of producing a championship winning car.
What is the outcome?
There’s no 8th WDC for Hamilton in the foreseeable future with Mercedes and there’s no winning team prepared to recruit him.
Having threatened the FIA and F1 fans with a Hamilton retirement, Wolff et al may now in fact see their predication come true.
And the final word goes to Red Bull Racing’s grumpy grandad when asked about Verstappen lapping Lewis in Imola. Helmut Marko observed, “Maybe he [Hamilton] should have stopped last year.”
Food for thought as sports men and woman always struggle to know when enough is enough.