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gooner

Just when Hamilton thought he'd have it easy next year....

Mercedes sign up Bottas for next year. What a great move, he's been fantastic in a Williams that was, to be fair, not quite on the pace last year. When it was closer to the front the year before he really took the fight to Mercedes. I reckon he's going to be a real challenger for the championship next year, he's got the speed and isn't afraid to go head to head with a more experienced team mate.

Interestingly Massa's come out of retirement in his place. Still, maybe his next final Brazilian GP will go a bit better this time.
simonp

The worst kept secret in sport is finally announced.
PhilD

simonp wrote:
The worst kept secret in sport is finally announced.


Gooner didn't know!  
Chris M Wanted a V-10

simonp wrote:
The worst kept secret in sport is finally announced.

Indeed - I hope that Bottom-ass gives Hamilton a good run for his money next year, and Mercedes have the "double-numbers" on their cars for good measure, 44 and 77
simonp

PhilD wrote:
simonp wrote:
The worst kept secret in sport is finally announced.


Gooner didn't know! †


I told you it'd be fun not telling him.
gooner

simonp wrote:
PhilD wrote:
simonp wrote:
The worst kept secret in sport is finally announced.


Gooner didn't know! †


I told you it'd be fun not telling him.


Well evidently no one told Williams either if they had to rush Massa back from retirement!
PhilD

gooner wrote:
simonp wrote:
PhilD wrote:
simonp wrote:
The worst kept secret in sport is finally announced.


Gooner didn't know! †


I told you it'd be fun not telling him.


Well evidently no one told Williams either if they had to rush Massa back from retirement!


I wonder how fat he's got.
Humphrey The Pug

Bottas is solid and will bring the car home, Hamilton has nothing to worry about.
Nice Guy Eddie

Always hard to evaluate when drivers aren't in the best machinery but judging by what I've seen from Bottas I can't see Hamilton being under serious threat. Maybe he's mot been motivated in anything more than being quicker than Massa and he'll suddenly have a serious injection of pace. After all no one thought Button would keep Hamilton so honest.
PhilD

Bottas sounds much like Rosberg then so, as you say, nothing for Hamilton to worry about...
gooner

PhilD wrote:
Bottas sounds much like Rosberg then so, as you say, nothing for Hamilton to worry about...


And quite a calm guy who gets on with the business a bit like Kimi who didn't cause any problems for Lewis in 2007.....
BeN

I hope Bottas keeps Hamilton on edge, but there's also the chance that, given 2016 and Rosberg, Mercedes might have a quiet word to, ahem, let Lewis do his thing.

Interestingly though, Paddy Lowe has gone the other way to Williams. Wonder how that changes things.
PhilD

The Mercs may not be the best car this year which could make team dynamics even more interesting.
Giant

As ever, I hope Lewis's team mate beats him. He has had a succession of likeable drivers as his team mate, although maybe these things are all relative compared to Lewis!
Big Blue

Giant wrote:
As ever, I hope Lewis's team mate beats him. He has had a succession of likeable drivers as his team mate, although maybe these things are all relative compared to Lewis!


+1
Eff One

Giant wrote:
As ever, I hope Lewis's team mate beats him. He has had a succession of likeable drivers as his team mate, although maybe these things are all relative compared to Lewis!


+100
Frank Bullitt

Eff One wrote:
Giant wrote:
As ever, I hope Lewis's team mate beats him. He has had a succession of likeable drivers as his team mate, although maybe these things are all relative compared to Lewis!


+100


And again!
simonp

gooner wrote:
simonp wrote:
PhilD wrote:
simonp wrote:
The worst kept secret in sport is finally announced.


Gooner didn't know! †


I told you it'd be fun not telling him.


Well evidently no one told Williams either if they had to rush Massa back from retirement!


This article was published on the 3rd of Jan and mentions that very fact...  

https://www.thesun.co.uk/sport/25...n-nico-rosbergs-shock-retirement/
Sav

I thought this was a driving contest, not a personality one? If itís the latter, the likes of Barrichello and Fisichella are the pinnacle of drivers Ė lovely blokes. The only personality Iím interested in is the attitude a driver shows on a race track. Hamilton, Vettel, Alonso, Schumacher Ė none of them have much of a ďpersonalityĒ Ė but they were/are epic operators on the track.

Botttas is undoubtedly very good; he has some impressive achievements in junior single seaters that allowed him to reach F1. However, I was a bit disappointed that he didnít outpace Massa between 2014-2016 to a significant degree. †One would think that Hamilton will be a tougher teammate to contend with.

Bottas needs to sharpen up his race craft in my view. Too often he has been rather accommodating of pursuing drivers, including the Mercís when he could have given them a tougher time. He certainly canít be accommodating with Hamilton, and if the front of the grid is closer, heíll need to be more robust in wheel-to-wheel combat. Even to match Hamilton would be a massive achievement, to beat him would be brilliant Ė Bottas is taking the next step in his career and it will be fascinating to see whether he can seize the opportunity in a potentially-winning car.
Martin

Spot on Sav.
Tim

Sav wrote:
I thought this was a driving contest, not a personality one?


You're right Sav, however, we're entitled to our opinions on the individuals as well and I'm sure you couldn't deny that for all the ones who dislike Hamilton there are plenty who like him, not to mention quite a few who froth at the keyboard if somebody doesn't declare their undying love for him.

He comes across as a great driver but certainly not as someone you would choose as a friend.
Nice Guy Eddie

I'd choose him as a friend. Free flights in his Jet, sloppy seconds on a succession of models, the guys in a different country everyday fucking about on bikes, skiing, sailing. Sounds like a nightmare.
BeN

I don't think he comes across as a particularly friendly sort of chap, but then I've never met him so I wouldn't know.
PhilD

Tim wrote:
Sav wrote:
I thought this was a driving contest, not a personality one?


You're right Sav


He's not. It's a sporting contest. As spectators and/or supporters we are entitled to choose which bits of it we seek enjoyment from. I've decided Hamilton is my pantomime villain  
Chris M Wanted a V-10

^
Oh no he's not.....
Humphrey The Pug

PhilD wrote:
Tim wrote:
Sav wrote:
I thought this was a driving contest, not a personality one?


You're right Sav


He's not. It's a sporting contest. As spectators and/or supporters we are entitled to choose which bits of it we seek enjoyment from. I've decided Hamilton is my pantomime villain †


He's more of a Dame!
Frank Bullitt

Tim wrote:
Sav wrote:
I thought this was a driving contest, not a personality one?


You're right Sav, however, we're entitled to our opinions on the individuals as well and I'm sure you couldn't deny that for all the ones who dislike Hamilton there are plenty who like him, not to mention quite a few who froth at the keyboard if somebody doesn't declare their undying love for him.

He comes across as a great driver but certainly not as someone you would choose as a friend.


Agreed.

Schumacher, Senna and Vettel all have or had a notably charm to them; you can be focused and self confident whilst displaying a degree of humility (although at times each of them have suffered one or more serious bypasses), Hamilton is different; it's not his aggression on the track with other drivers, but his yellow-belly whining about everyone else in the team being at fault when it doesn't go his way - his lack of personal accountability belies his true spineless and unprofessional behaviour.
Big Blue

Lewis' record against JB probably doesn't add up to him being a driving god; being beaten to the title by Nico when Nico by his own admission was playing the numbers game for half a season (regardless of car failures / luck etc; Hamilton has been shite at getting the car off the line to a large extent: a big part of the driving contest) also doesn't point to his greatness in the car that was head, shoulders and torso above the rest.

Lewis, as a driver, is in the top 10 of all time, no doubt about that, but how would he fare against the other 9? Pretty evenly most likely so as fans we have to seek out other factors that make drivers "supportable". Lewis comes 10th in the criteria search, probably a close tie for that bottom position with Senna who single handedly led the way for the lack of driver-respect and strove for safety improvements simply so he could run his opponents off the track without feeling guilty about harming them.

I loved Senna in the era of him driving, but the more I learn about him as I get older the more of a twat I think he was. Maybe as I approach my dotage and Hamilton has long since retired I'll change my opinion of him - only time will tell.
Chris M Wanted a V-10

It says something about Hmailton (but I'm not sure what) that he is still generally capable of placing the car at the front of the grid and finishing on the podium despite the distractions and stresses on his mind/body caused by his chosen "popstar" or "celebrity" lifestyle. †There do appear to be certain week-ends when it all catches up with him, and he's just another also-ran at the starting line.

If only he could totally focus on being a professional F1 driver.....
PhilD

Chris M Wanted a V-10 wrote:
It says something about Hmailton (but I'm not sure what) that he is still generally capable of placing the car at the front of the grid and finishing on the podium despite the distractions and stresses on his mind/body caused by his chosen "popstar" or "celebrity" lifestyle.


Does it say that his car is 2 seconds quicker a lap than everyone else's?
Humphrey The Pug

PhilD wrote:
Chris M Wanted a V-10 wrote:
It says something about Hmailton (but I'm not sure what) that he is still generally capable of placing the car at the front of the grid and finishing on the podium despite the distractions and stresses on his mind/body caused by his chosen "popstar" or "celebrity" lifestyle.


Does it say that his car is 2 seconds quicker a lap than everyone else's?


Rosberg looke mentally and physically drained at the end of the last race, I believe he also hired some kind of "life coach" this year so that he could deal with the pressure, Hamilton takes it all in his stride, wins races and championships all whilst living it up too.
PhilD

Humphrey The Pug wrote:
PhilD wrote:
Chris M Wanted a V-10 wrote:
It says something about Hmailton (but I'm not sure what) that he is still generally capable of placing the car at the front of the grid and finishing on the podium despite the distractions and stresses on his mind/body caused by his chosen "popstar" or "celebrity" lifestyle.


Does it say that his car is 2 seconds quicker a lap than everyone else's?


Rosberg looke mentally and physically drained at the end of the last race, I believe he also hired some kind of "life coach" this year so that he could deal with the pressure, Hamilton takes it all in his stride, wins races and championships all whilst living it up too.


Hang on, I thought Rosberg won last year?
Humphrey The Pug

PhilD wrote:
Humphrey The Pug wrote:
PhilD wrote:
Chris M Wanted a V-10 wrote:
It says something about Hmailton (but I'm not sure what) that he is still generally capable of placing the car at the front of the grid and finishing on the podium despite the distractions and stresses on his mind/body caused by his chosen "popstar" or "celebrity" lifestyle.


Does it say that his car is 2 seconds quicker a lap than everyone else's?


Rosberg looke mentally and physically drained at the end of the last race, I believe he also hired some kind of "life coach" this year so that he could deal with the pressure, Hamilton takes it all in his stride, wins races and championships all whilst living it up too.


Hang on, I thought Rosberg won last year?


Yes he did but even he admitted it was an effort and it was clear to see that it was a massive effort for, whereas it seems to come more naturally to Hamilton.
PhilD

Humphrey The Pug wrote:
PhilD wrote:
Humphrey The Pug wrote:
PhilD wrote:
Chris M Wanted a V-10 wrote:
It says something about Hmailton (but I'm not sure what) that he is still generally capable of placing the car at the front of the grid and finishing on the podium despite the distractions and stresses on his mind/body caused by his chosen "popstar" or "celebrity" lifestyle.


Does it say that his car is 2 seconds quicker a lap than everyone else's?


Rosberg looke mentally and physically drained at the end of the last race, I believe he also hired some kind of "life coach" this year so that he could deal with the pressure, Hamilton takes it all in his stride, wins races and championships all whilst living it up too.


Hang on, I thought Rosberg won last year?


Yes he did but even he admitted it was an effort and it was clear to see that it was a massive effort for, whereas it seems to come more naturally to Hamilton.


Losing comes more naturally?
Frank Bullitt

Humphrey The Pug wrote:
PhilD wrote:
Chris M Wanted a V-10 wrote:
It says something about Hmailton (but I'm not sure what) that he is still generally capable of placing the car at the front of the grid and finishing on the podium despite the distractions and stresses on his mind/body caused by his chosen "popstar" or "celebrity" lifestyle.


Does it say that his car is 2 seconds quicker a lap than everyone else's?


Rosberg looke mentally and physically drained at the end of the last race, I believe he also hired some kind of "life coach" this year so that he could deal with the pressure, Hamilton takes it all in his stride, wins races and championships all whilst living it up too.


Are you suggesting any of those are bad things? He has to work at it...no issue there, I've seen Hamilton look like shit after GP's too, although difficult to tell how tired if he loses as he  trips himself up on his chin and only after getting back up does he start the blame game. A 'Life Coach' - nothing wrong with coaching, lots of people use them (I have).

Hamilton doesn't take it in his stride, if he did he wouldn't be so quick to behave like an impetulant school boy if it doesn't all go his way.
Humphrey The Pug

Frank Bullitt wrote:
Humphrey The Pug wrote:
PhilD wrote:
Chris M Wanted a V-10 wrote:
It says something about Hmailton (but I'm not sure what) that he is still generally capable of placing the car at the front of the grid and finishing on the podium despite the distractions and stresses on his mind/body caused by his chosen "popstar" or "celebrity" lifestyle.


Does it say that his car is 2 seconds quicker a lap than everyone else's?


Rosberg looke mentally and physically drained at the end of the last race, I believe he also hired some kind of "life coach" this year so that he could deal with the pressure, Hamilton takes it all in his stride, wins races and championships all whilst living it up too.


Are you suggesting any of those are bad things? He has to work at it...no issue there, I've seen Hamilton look like shit after GP's too, although difficult to tell how tired if he loses as he †trips himself up on his chin and only after getting back up does he start the blame game. A 'Life Coach' - nothing wrong with coaching, lots of people use them (I have).

Hamilton doesn't take it in his stride, if he did he wouldn't be so quick to behave like an impetulant school boy if it doesn't all go his way.


Not at all, it just seems to come more naturally to Hamilton.
Big Blue

Conversely, looking happy and understanding that you're massively privileged to be in an F1 car, let alone the best F1 car, came far more naturally to Nico than to Lewis.

I think Lewis (and others, like Kimi) has another problem with F1: I think the modern cars are not what he wants to be doing. He aspired to that era of uncontrollable over-powered cars and the skill-set that was required to control them - the modern cars are defined by the plethora of buttons on the steering wheel. I have pictures of drivers from the past that finished races with open blisters on their hands from gear changing ,000s of times in a race, gloves worn to buggery, drenched in sweat, all whilst sitting in a car that was basically an engine with a seat situated where it was convenient.

There's also that global superstar status that Senna, Hunt, Schumacher all had that with the encroachment of stability and reliability in the cars he has been partially deprived of - as has Vettel, who's 4 titles in any other era would have made his every fart back page news whereas he is just an F1 driver. Part of Lewis' other activities are seeking to capture that element of being an F1 driver that just doesn't exist in an era where live sport is available across a range of sports when in the past live F1 was one of the few that competed with live cricket to send you to sleep on a Sunday afternoon.
Sav

[quote="Tim:570312"]
Sav wrote:


He comes across as a great driver but certainly not as someone you would choose as a friend.


I agree with you. I wouldnít say that Hamilton comes across as unfriendly, but specifically, I donít care much for his awful-looking clothing, drug-dealer jewellery and his general rap star wannabe persona. On the flip side, heís well known outside of motorsport because of the events he attends, and the people he socialises at those events. Even if those people might not turn into avid motorsport fans, increasing awareness of a type of motorsport can only be a good thing.

Iím not sure I buy the assertion that Hamilton quickly whines at someone else or the team when something goes wrong. There were a number of situations last year where quite frankly, it would have been quite legitimate to question his team. The MGU-failure debacle put him mid-pack at a number of races, the poor starts were a Mercedes-specific problem, and the engine failure in Malaysia was a final nail in the coffin.

I didnít see many people complain about the extent of Vettelís radio meltdowns at the mere sight of a stubborn backmarkers in 2016. If Hamilton had behaved like Vettel had in Mexico, Iím sure he would have been declared as a whining brat. I found that ordeal quite amusing, it reminded me that these guys still have great passion for what they do.

It is true that Button scored more points than Hamilton between 2010-2012 when they were teammates. However, it would be fair to say that Hamilton went into Maldonado-mode on occasions in 2011. That cost him a lot of points. This is evidenced by the fact that Hamilton out-scored Button in 2010 and 2012.

I donít think that Hamiltonís technical failures of 2016 should be underestimated. Iím not saying that Nico was an unworthy champion, because he stepped up his game and minimised a number of his own deficiencies. However, the MGU failures, engine penalty at Spa and the engine blow-up in Malaysia canít just be ignored. To top that, the starts for Mercedes were dodgy until towards the end of the year Ė for both cars. It started in Australia when Vettel blasted off the line to overtake both Mercís. Nico had a shocker in Germany, so did Hamilton at Monza. It was ironic that Mercedes had a decisive advantage for a GP distance, except for the first 400 metres or so.

Was it driver influenced? I wish it was mostly case. The FIA should have mandated a much more comprehensive overhaul of the start-procedure in 2015, as opposed to just ditching the second clutch lever and limiting practice starts. A driver is still very much at the mercy of the software at their disposal. The starts need to be like GP2, with less software influencing these matters. Ever wondered why F1 starts barley see a mere plume of smoke? Launch-control may have been officially banned, but electronically-controlled traction-enhancing measures are clearly evident.

This is where there might be strong disagreement, but Iíll say it anyway. I believe that the refuelling ban in 2010 has actually enhanced the credibility sportís best drivers. Qualifying with the race fuel load always irritated me because qualifying was essentially decided before it began. That allowed favouritism, and Iím sure the teams loved refuelling because it avoided team-mate battles, due to the differing fuel-loads - thus sufficiently separated both cars from each other. Of course, this isnít say that qualifying up until 2010 was irrelevant, but it is now a true contest of speed between teammates Ė no fuel loads to interfere.

I also believe that it is harder for drivers to gain decisive advantages over their respective teammates. You canít pound around a private test track anymore for unlimited miles, you canít have specifically-tailored tyres, and you canít have a lighter fuel-load to buy you track position on the grid. It isnít to say that Schumacher wasnít outstanding, he was. Indeed, his desire to improve the car and team was a great skill in itself. However, there are now fewer technical variables to favour drivers, which is why finding an advantage is even harder for drivers Ė and maintaining those advantages.

Hamilton often matched and beat Alonso; he fared well against Button, and won two championships against the current world champion. Additionally, he has adapted well to the loss of traction control, the blown diffuser, the refuelling-ban, Pirelli tyres and the hybrid cars from 2014. And then youíve got his race craft, which is absolutely fantastic, and heís one of the best in the wet. I therefore think that history will judge him extremely well, and Alonso actually Ė for similar reasons Ė adaptability across various regulation changes, race craft and raw speed. Itís a driving contest, and Hamilton and Alonso are some of the best ever seen when it comes to that.

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