Lewis Hamilton, Ron Dennis, McLaren, Interlagos, 2008

Hamilton: “No one controls me” after leaving McLaren

F1 Fanatic round-upPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Lewis Hamilton, Ron Dennis, McLaren, Interlagos, 2008In the round-up: Lewis Hamilton says no one “controls” him now he has left McLaren.


Your daily digest of F1 news, views, features and more.

Free at last: How Mercedes switch has left Lewis Hamilton relaxed and ready to win again (Daily Mirror)

Hamilton talks about how he feels free of the control exerted by his father and Ron Dennis, and refers to an incident three years ago where “in my personal life I was having someone saying things to me which was really affecting me… and unfortunately, it did affect me”.

Fernley: Gains hard to find (Sky)

“Apart from McLaren, who we know will come back and be as strong as always, for the rest of the teams there is not much left in these cars as they are today.”

Renault: no backing off for V6 switch (Autosport)

Renault Sport F1 deputy manging director Rob White: “We are very conscious that all the teams we currently supply expect us to be fully engaged and committed. I strongly believe that it needs to be business as usual on the race track in 2013.”

Bouris facing judgment, too (The Age)

“Some time in 2012, Delta Topco’s shareholding structure changed. The individual shareholders disappeared from the register and the company now has four times as many shares on issue, held in the names of a bewildering assortment of funds associated with CVC, JPMorgan, US vulture fund BlackRock, asset managers Waddell & Reed and insurer MassMutual.”

Vettel and Webber ‘will clash again’ (BBC)

John Watson: “I think the team have shown incredible weakness by not penalising their number one driver and they have now created a rod for their own back.”

Lewis Hamilton explains how an F1 steering wheel works (F1 Fanatic via YouTube)


Comment of the day

Sonia Luff has a particular reason to support Jack Harvey in GP3 this year:

I?m following Jack Harvey as he is a local boy for me. I don?t know him well personally but have met him at a friend’s house. He seems like a good lad and is really focused on his career.
Sonia Luff (@Sonia54)

From the forum

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Peter Dixon!

If you want a birthday shout-out tell us when yours is by emailling me, using Twitter or adding to the list here.

On this day in F1

Mike Spence lost his life on this day in 1968. He had taken over Jim Clark’s entry for the Indianapolis, Clark having lost his life earlier that year.

Spence was struck on the head by a wheel from his car after hitting the wall during practice at the speedway.

He had finished on the podium in Mexico three years earlier. Over the next two seasons Spence scored a series of fifth place finishes in a Reg Parnell-run Lotus and later for BRM at the wheel of their chronically unreliable H16-engined car.

Image ?? McLaren/Hoch Zwei

132 comments on “Hamilton: “No one controls me” after leaving McLaren”

  1. It’s good that Hamilton has completely moved away from Mclaren. But it really would do him no harm to show some restraint when talking about Ron Dennis. Yes Dennis is a bit of a control-freak, but he’s also the man responsible for putting Hamilton in Mclaren.

    1. Traverse (@)
      7th May 2013, 3:28

      Better to be a free ant than a caged lion.

      1. @hellotraverse cute. But he will be and an anonymous ant, with out those nice $60MILLIONS, that pretty private plane and his pop star girlfriend… maybe a little gratitud and to say something nice about his old team; instead to repeat that McLarean is the F1 equivalent of Guantanmo

        1. @celeste

          When will these kinds of comments stop? It is if you think Hamilton was used as some kind of social experiment, and needs to be eternally grateful. Perhaps you could try watching some of his karting performances in the early days. McLaren owe him at least as much as he owes them. Maybe it is time to quit with this tired, repetitive nonsense?

          1. @paulguitar the thing is I don´t see anyone in McLaren speaking ill of Hamilton, and saying how happy they are about don´t have to worry about what they drivers tweet anymore; and gratefulness doesn´t have a date of expiration. At least I was taught that you don´t bite the hand that fed you, not now not ever. I´m getting a little tired about his speech. So I´m not buying his “brand”.

          2. @celeste Are you suggesting that he should have stayed at Mclaren, closeting all his frustrations and ? Lewis Hamilton moving away from Mclaren is almost the same as each and everyone of us who moves out of our parent’s houses when we grow up, facing challenges that life throws at us. He was brought up by Mclaren. Just like how your parents raised you. When you are ready to be independent, you move out. That’s what humans do. Deal with it!

          3. @rojov123

            “Lewis Hamilton moving away from Mclaren is almost the same as each and everyone of us who moves out of our parent’s houses when we grow up, facing challenges that life throws at us.”

            Yes, that’s absolutely right. But to add to that, just because you move out from your parents’ house doesn’t mean you have to be a **** to them later!

          4. @rojov123 Have I say that Hamilton should have stay in Mclaren? No.
            Yes, he is at every right to move to another country, team, or planet.

            But instead to “Yes I leave McLaren because it was hell in earth, and poor Hami couldn’t tweet about me and my teammate telemetry or record a rap hit song becaiuse they wouldn’t let me” ; he couldn be thankfull and respectfull and say “yes I leave McLaren because I wanted another challange. McLarean is a great team and I thankfull for all the years they suported my career”.
            Because I’m pretty sure even by being good at karting there not a lot of chances to get to F1, even more to get to a top team with out previous experience.

          5. @sankalp88 @celeste Are you guys serious? You are taking his words completely out of context. Celeste, when you were living with your parents, were you allowed to do whatever you want? House party, drinking, bringing home fellas for one night stands…etc? I think not! But after you move into a new place that is not a controlled environment, you can! Hamilton’s words are similar to what you might say to your friend “Whew, I am so glad I am out of my parents house now. I am a free bird and I can do whatever I want. My dad wont be able to tell me what to do/wear/eat/… anymore..Awesome!!” . If you don’t say that, then there is definitely something wrong with you.
            I have heard every single one of my friends say something along those lines after they move. But, I have never heard anyone say. “My parents brought me up with a lot of love all these years and I am now grateful to them for being there to help me get ready for new challenges like this in life.
            He has respect and gratitude. But, he doesn’t have to show it each and every single time. Cheers

          6. I agree with @celeste ,I don’t think its great to keep criticising former emloyers in public, especially Ron who gave him so much. Having said that, I’d rather this than him not talk at all.

          7. @celeste your comment is COTD for me… Loved your counter argument of ant against lion.. Keep it up..

          8. Hamilton’s words are similar to what you might say to your friend

            @rojov123 you can say it to your friends, not to the media. He is a media figure, but he should learn, in his “independent and mature” self, what politeness is. I agree with @celeste and @john-h . He can rap, party, that’s great, but why ranting about “old papa” Dennis publicly?

          9. @omarr-pepper

            It seems very strange that as a fan of the series you are asking for more self censorship! O.o

        2. @hellotraverse – But he certainly can never be as anonymous as you are. See.

        3. @celeste
          Actually Hamilton spoke very positively about his former team on more than one occasion, but whenever he says something even slightly critical, then boy oh boy… you people surely know how to blow it out of proportions!

          1. I think @celeste read the wrong interview.

          2. Traverse (@)
            7th May 2013, 15:09

            I think @celeste has a crush on Hamilton and is jealous of Nicole. ;)

          3. @maroonjack Yeah, I kind of like consistency. And I´m pretty loyal person (blame it on my dad). If you are gonna talk about a past boss, you should be thankful always, not some times.

            @jcost Not, I read the right one. But I will coincide that anyone should be entitle to their own opinión and interpretation.

            @hellotraverse as much as it is fun to blame it on my sentimental life, it isn´t so. But I will admit I dislike Nicole, but it is because she can´t sing the right notes to sabe her life and she was in a group with the Word “pussy” on it.

            Now I need to work… So have fun…

          4. In @celeste defense you need to keep in mind the context of the comment he was replying to I think.

          5. @mike My hero…. ;)

          6. jimscreechy (@)
            8th May 2013, 7:13

            Sorry have to agree with @Celeste on this one, I read the whole article and he didn’t speak derogatorily about Ron Dennis in any way. It was an honest representation of who Ron is and how he runs his business, what, is this disputed or is it the simple fact he’s said this which is ticking people off?

            In fact I struggle to interpret it in the way some of you have. I am nothing but a great admirer of Ron Dennis and cringe when I hear him spoke of in a bad light but this was a testiment of the man’s strength of character and some of the possible downsides in dealing with characteristics like this. I mean he capares his character to that of his father in a very level headed way, I can’t see the issue. Are some of you suggesting that to do anything other than praise someone unreservedly in an unrealistic glow of angelic reverence shows a lack of repect? Ridiculous.

        4. @celeste
          This article is clearly aimed at people who don’t like the guy and to steer arguments vs/against who does. And, that never fails…
          Journalists know that people have a tendency to create a storm every time, assess and criticise LH beyond reason i.e. private jet, girlfriend when he is, allegedly, simply expressing his opinion about his previous employer. You are definitely entitled to your opinion, and of course, as a fan I would like to think I am being fair. I have not seen him make a bad comment on TV about McLaren since he left. He knows Ron better than any of us and we can only assume they still have a reasonably good relationship. Do you think he (LH) would go to daily Mirror and destroy that and call him a control freak?

        5. @celeste It is very sad that lewis is always at the receiving end of this story. I mean everybody says how Ron and Mclaren gave him a a life and it is because of Mclaren that he is who he is today. Please keep in mind Ron Dennis was not running any charity. Ron is a smart individual. he saw the talent early on and he grabbed it before somebody else could grab it. It was just a matter of time that such talent can be kept under wraps. One can always say it is because of Mclaren he is a world champion. Out of the 5 WDC today on the grid everybody except vettel drove for mclaren and only Lewis could be a WDC with Mclaren. In fact Lewis was the only guy who could give them a WDC in the last 14 years. The Great Newey was there for Kimi at Mclaren. How many time should Lewis keep thanking Ron and Mclaren ? Just because Ron gave him a chance does not mean that he is obligated life long. Lewis has given enough credit to Ron and co during these years. Again ask Newey, Prost, Senna, Alonso, Kimi , Montoyo how they felt in Mclaren !!!!

          At least for once people should think what Lewis have given to Mclaren instead of parroting the message what Mclaren and Ron has done to Lewis.

    2. I guess he’s not planning to go back to Mclaren anymore. Remember how he said to keep the door open? How things change.

    3. He owes nothing to Ron Dennis. He was put in the McLaren seat because they felt he was the right guy for the job. He clearly was because he matched the double world champion Alonso in the same machinery immediately.

  2. Dammit Lewis, I wanted to know which button sets Multi 21!

    1. Traverse (@)
      7th May 2013, 2:09

      The “Multi 21” button is only on Rosberg’s Steering wheel ;)

      1. @hellotraverse haha! Vettel removed his with a screwdriver, much to the annoyance of Horner and particularly Webber I presume ;)

        1. Haha

          Nah it’s making up for the time Vettel got Webber’s new wing, Vettel just hasn’t got that “update” yet!

          1. @mike perhaps so! :P

  3. I was there at the Manila Speed Show! :) Great experience. They should’ve gotten Stockinger’s Twitter account right though! It’s @imstockinger.

    1. Thats wonderfull @journeyer!

  4. Random Pirelli rant with regards to their change of compound for Spain, compare to previous years:

    I think Pirelli don’t care about racing it self. They succeeded in their marketing raid on F1. Everyone by now heard of Pirelli and even teams wont stop talking about them. Pirelli is a sole sponsor who is being mentioned on TV all the time.

    They are not in sport for competition, if they were, they would been developing their tyres to give more grip and last longer at the same time.

    It is sad, but I have to agree with pessimists, that this is hardly sport now.

    One thing I’m sure 100% about Pirelli is, that due to their lack of character (they should be deciding what tyres F1 should be using, not F1), you will never see this brand of tyres on my car.

    1. Nick.UK (@)
      7th May 2013, 1:48

      Sure, everyone is talking about Pirelli. But is it all positive? What good does generating negative talk do them, so your argument that they only want to promote themselves falls flat on its face at the first hurdle. Also why should FOM not have control over the type of tyres in its sport/business? Pirelli are like a building contractor, they do what the client asks them. It’s the same thing here.

      While I’m not a huge fan of the 2013 tyres myself, I can’t see your comment as anything more than a misunderstanding of why Pirelli has made the tyres the way they are.

      1. I’m sorry, I though I did not have to write it out in an essay. I think pretty much everyone here can fill the gaps between the line as we all follow the same thing. Of course there is plenty of negative, when does that become an obsolete PR campaign? Considering size of the company compare to other three recent suppliers, I dont think management accounting department at Pirelli think negative factor is doing them any greater harm than good.

        I don’t mind rules, but when something fundamental being used as a tool – this is where I’m jumping off the wagon for exiting racing and diversity of strategies.

        As I said many time before when I was defending them last year and this year. I don’t have any issue with them creating the tires with certain specifications. But when they further start playing with the tyre selection I find it unfair manipulation.

    2. They are not in sport for competition, if they were, they would been developing their tyres to give more grip and last longer at the same time.

      – if they would do that, tell me, who would they be competing with Kimi4WDC?

      1. For the same reason as any other participant of the sport. To push yourself beyond limit. Which is of course not the case, hence the whole situation I’m ranting about.

        1. that’s not sport, that’s training yourself. Or setting a world record. It becomes a sport when you can win over others doing the same.

          And Pirelli are doing it by matching the challenge the FIA/teams set them by asking for “races like the 2010 Canadian GP”.

    3. Pirelli are under instruction by the FIA to create a these tyres. Pay attention.

      1. So are tams and everyone involved to obey rule set. Your point?

        1. *the teams

      2. The point is, Pirelli are building the product that they are being pushed to design by the FIA and FOM instead of what they themselves might have designed were they given greater flexibility. Bernie himself has spoken out on the tyres and made it clear that he wants Pirelli to continue their current policy, and one would presume that he is exerting his political influence in private as well as in public to keep things as they are.

        Equally, going to the other extreme, as Bridgestone did, might not necessarily work either – Bridgestone noted that, since they ended up being taken for granted, that in the end they only hit the headlines when their tyres failed to work as expected. Remember the extreme knee jerk reaction from the teams back in 2009 when Bridgestone brought the super soft tyres to Australia and found that their usable life was a lot shorter than expected (even shorter than Pirelli’s tyres were lasting)? Having teams scream about Bridgestone’s super soft tyres being dangerous and unusable hurt their reputation for a long time, since nobody cared that the tyre wear in the following races was negligible by comparison – it was the extreme negative events that people remembered rather than the normal state of affairs, so in the end Bridgestone found that their approach did little to improve their image at all.

        1. Rubbish.

          First, it was the FOTA who proposed the specs for the tyre change, not the FIA or the FOM.

          Second, the FOTA didn’t give Pirelli any great detailed list of desired changes, all they asked for was less durable tyres, specifically enumerating an ideal of 2-3 pit stops per race. They didn’t ask for a microscopically narrow (and migratory) performance window. Or tonnes of clag. Or that the tyres should be destroyed the first time they were overheated. Pirelli threw those in for no extra charge (a “lagniappe,” as the Cajuns say).

          The tonnes of clag was a problem identified in preseason testing in 2011. At the time, Pirelli attributed it to the short lead time on the spec change not allowing for sufficient R&D to eliminate it. Yet here we are more than 40 races on and its still as big a problem as ever.

          Third, Pirelli employ professional racing tyre engineers. The FIA, the FOM and the FOTA do not. A proper professional (or subject matter expert) will warn off a client if they naïvely ask for a product that is not suitable for the proposed task. It’s called due diligence. Pirelli have failed in theirs.

          The gold standard for racing program tyre support was created by Leo Mehl, who headed Goodyear’s racing division for 33 years, an era in which Goodyear became the dominant tyre supplier to virtually every motor racing venue on the planet, everything from the NHRA to the WKA. In those days, Leo was regarded as the most powerful man in all of motor racing because no sanctioning body using Goodyear tyres could make any rule changes that would alter how the tyres interfaced with the tarmac in any way whatsoever without first consulting with Leo to confirm that Goodyear could support it.

          The secret to Goodyear’s success was Leo’s understanding of the true origin of the money they were being paid for their products and services: the fans who’d paid to watch the race. WRC or IMSA or FISA might have been the client, but Leo never lost sight of who really was paying his salary. And his cardinal rule was never to permit his company’s product to fail the fan’s expectations. So Leo didn’t mind telling the client “No” when it was for their own good.

          More’s the pity Paul Hembery can’t be more like Leo Mehl and less like P.T. Barnum.

          As for Bernie, the chief problem with being an eccentric octogenarian billionaire is that it eventually becomes impossible to tell the difference between bombast and senile dimentia.

  5. Lewis says all these things about freedom, but in the end he was able to show how good he is because of the support of those “control freaks” he talks about. I really hope he can be champion with Mercedes again, or else he would have to swallow his own tongue.

    1. @omarr-pepper Lewis is a great driver, but he needs to mature. You don´t go around talking bad about your old boss. Bet he didn´t thought it was that bad when they help him get to F1 and took a chance on him with out having previous F1 experience…

      1. @celeste What “bad” did Lewis Hamilton say about his old boss? All he said is that there are parellels between his dad and Ron Dennis. If anything, it is a compliment of sorts.

    2. @omarr-pepper

      Its a random Lewis rant, don’t give it much importance..

      1. Traverse (@)
        7th May 2013, 18:46

        I wouldn’t class responding to a reporters question in a measured, honest and sincere manner as a “rant”.

    3. He says many things about his dad and not much about Dennis, in both cases he didn’t say anything wrong and I think he goes along well with both.

  6. 3 weeks seem long enough to see that comment (and it’s a good comment, but…) chosen COTD.

    It’s envy I have never got one :P

  7. Traverse (@)
    7th May 2013, 2:23

    Lewis definitely appears to have found himself after spending all of his professional career under the command of Dennis. It’s comparable to when a child leaves home, they’ll either prosper and go from strength to strength, or end up running home with their tail between their legs. From what I’ve witnessed, I don’t see Ham ever rejoining McLaren, leaving them was clearly the best move of his F1 career thus far.

    1. got stressed of cars breaking down. Now his cars last, but let’s see what opinion he gives after this year. He might now win any races, especially now, that the group of top teams has risen to 5 (McLaren will recover for sure, Lotus, Ferrari, RedBull and Mercedes itself). So if he has to challenge 10 drivers (looks like Nico is not going to bother, after Malaysia we know that) it will definitely be harder to win.

  8. Who is this John Watson and why is he still voicing over past events. Why penalize your leading point scorer? He did not cost the team fines or points. We do not know what has been said behind closed doors. Maybe Webber has first choice of upgrades now, maybe Vettel donated the prize money to Webbers charity. Does it really matter anymore? Webber and Vettel have clashed before and they will clash again. It is the nature of a hungry driver. If John Watson is so needy of attention then he should become a team principle and show us how it is done.

    1. Here is an idea, lets send all the old drivers to a island and let them fight Hunger Games/ Battle Royale style and made it a reality tv show, they will have attention and we can get over this subject… ;)

    2. One bit that seems to be missing from the Malaysia story is that Dieter M doesn’t want team orders. Everyone talks about Vettel breaking team orders and how the WCC is the most important thing, but DM is the guy writing the hundreds of millions of dollars of checks every year, and as he made clear all the way back in 2010, he’d rather lose a championship (the WDC one at the time) they have team orders.

      Yet Horner/Newey/RBR go against THEIR boss quite often issuing team orders. And for all those saying the WCC really matters to the team, I think the only thing that matters is what matters to the team owner. And he doesn’t want team orders. Bad for the brand image.

    3. He’s just continuing the tradition of Brits critcising German drivers.

      It’s ridiculous that Red Bull weren’t giving Vettel their full support since he’s the reason for three championships in a row. John Watson doesn’t seem to understand that Vettel and Newey are the only people that truly matter in that team. Vettel can veto anything Horner has to say.

  9. MB (@muralibhats)
    7th May 2013, 4:07

    Without Ron, Hamilton was nothing. What a way to pay back the respect.

      1. -1

        Without Ron, Hamilton was nothing?, without Hamilton, McLarens last title was when sorry?

        1. In 2008, scored by Alonso who would have been a four time world champion.

          1. But Alonso got matched in his first season by a rookie, and given that Hamilton improved in his second season Alonso would have been blown away by Hamilton.

            Alonso had his opportunity to make history in the best machinery in 2007 but he failed to even beat a first year driver.

            Maybe 2014 will be Alonso’s year.

        2. MB (@muralibhats)
          7th May 2013, 17:38

          Lol. How could Ham win championship if he was not allowed into McLaren! That too start a rookie season with a top team!

          1. Both of you avoiding the question i see. How surprising.

    1. Traverse (@)
      7th May 2013, 17:53

      A driver as talented as Hamilton would’ve made it to F1 one way or another. It’s like saying Messi would be nothing without Barcelona.

      1. MB (@muralibhats)
        8th May 2013, 14:00

        I never said Hamilton is not talented enough to come to F1. maybe the ‘nothing’ was too harsh. Who has the fortune Hamilton enjoyed to be mentored by Ron from the age of 13?

        1. Traverse (@)
          8th May 2013, 19:21

          How many 10 year olds have the balls to walk up to a man like Ron Dennis and display such supreme confidence and have the talent to back it up, that a top team like McLaren feel compelled to sign him. Hamilton made his own “fortune”, and paved his own destiny. If McLaren hadn’t signed him another top team would’ve.

  10. Chris (@tophercheese21)
    7th May 2013, 4:07

    You left Mclaren to be free like a butterfly… We get it. Stop telling us.

    Lewis is my favourite driver, but we get the point.

    1. You left Mclaren to be free like a butterfly… We get it. Stop telling us


    2. Traverse (@)
      7th May 2013, 4:27

      Maybe journalists should stop asking him about McLaren/Ron Dennis.

      1. That is exactly the point.

        In the three week gap between races the journos need something to write about, so rehashing a story about Hamilton’s move to Mercedes is as good a story as any because it will get a fair amount of hits. He gets asked questinos, he answers them. It’s not his if we get bored of the answer!

      2. That’s exactly it, the journalist know this is a question with answers to get tongues wagging and will keep asking it.
        It’s obvious Hamilton wasn’t totally happy at Mclaren or he’d still be there. So obviously some negative point will be brought up when he is asked anything along the line of “What’s better about life at Mercedes than at Mclaren”.
        Anything he says in such a situation will cast Mclaren in a negative light in some form or fashion.

      3. @hellotraverse But it’s still Lewis answering it. He can answer it while showing due respect to Ron. It would’ve been nice if he looked forward more than looked back. :)

        1. Traverse (@)
          7th May 2013, 13:12

          I’d rather have a brutally honest, ‘what you see is what you get’ Hamilton, than a ‘I better watch what I say because it might affect the way people perceive me’ Button. :)

          1. I’d rather have an honest but considerate Hamilton.
            What’s your point?

          2. Traverse (@)
            7th May 2013, 14:36

            What’s your point?

            People complain daily that there are no honest people in society anymore. People in powerful positions protect their false reputations by taking out super-injunctions, politicians/celebrities lying left right and centre etc. But then when a guy like Lewis wears his heart on his sleeve and actually says how he really feels, people have a go at him. That’s my point. :)

    3. He is out of control!

      More racing and less talking is better. But, when they’re not racing, what else is there to do? Inquiring minds want to know.

      Seriously, it is good to see both sides helped each other, but they have moved on. Let’s go racing!

  11. Abdurahman (@)
    7th May 2013, 5:02

    Hamilton is a free man. He is in no way controlled by Mercedes AMG, Petronas, Puma, Monster Energy Drink, Blackberry, etc etc etc etc…..
    I always root for Ham, but this is getting to be too much. Shut up already and drive man! If anything it is just tacky to keep hearing these comments from him. Just wait till you have your autobiography written or your memoirs or whatnot.

    1. Then complain to the journalists who cant stop asking him the same ****.

  12. Harvey’s a pretty good driver, but I don’t think he’ll be a championship contender in GP3 this year. He’s generally been the slowest of the ART’s in pre-season testing behind Daly and Regalia. 2012 will be a learning year for him.

  13. Annoying to see that the forum and F1Fanatic live is being abused by people (bots?) advertising streams.

    On John Watson, Red Bull have stated that there won’t be any more team orders, so there is no need to control either drivers. Webber and Vettel have demonstrated often enough that they can race safely (Turkey 2010 being the only incident in four years as team mates), so there won’t be any need to control the drivers. The only problems in the RBR garage might be the chily relationship between Webber and Vettel, but I think they’ll make it to the end of the year together.

    1. Though I agree with your annoyance. The streams are the only reason why I’m back to watching F1 since 2003. I watched nearly every free practice session for last two and a half years. During that time I saw just one race on TV, due to lack of internet access.

      I don’t understand how FOM justifies all the revenue they missing on by not going with global live streaming with on demand replays and other fancy features they can plug into it. Even if it was a $15 monthly fee they would be better off, not counting on all the sponsors.

      Sad thing it’s not the matter of Bernie retiring, but finding a new leader to replace him who can stop giving away control to all the stake holders who can never agree on anything.

      1. If only F1 could be streamed like WEC Spa..

      2. Indeed, it’s a real shame there is no legal streaming. I also use streams on occasion, mostly for practice sessions, but it really feels like you’re heading into the seedier parts of the internet. Afterwards I always find a few windows hiding behind my main browser window, advertising online gambling at best, though more commonly scantily-clad women making indecent proposals. It makes me feel I should hide the screen from my wife and children when I want to watch free practice one.

        The amount of spam sent to the F1Fanatic forums today is another example that the people offering the streams are not very pleasant. It’s not the occasional “would you be interested in my stream” type of message, but rather a screen-filling intrusion that makes it hard to view any proper content.

    2. @adrianmorse Sorry about the spam problem – the forum has been cleaned up.

      Of course any assistance from those who’d like to help out as moderators is welcome:


  14. I was present at the Manila Speed Show. The first time you hear an F1 car is certainly unforgettable.
    Props to Lotus F1 team for bringing the experience to the Philippines.

    Here are some fan videos I took from the event. The speed of the car is unbelievable, I can’t follow with phone camera LOL

    Lotus F1 Engine Start

    Lotus F1 Flyby at the Mall of Asia

    Lotus F1 2 Seater Demo Car

    1. By the way, Davide Valsecchi was the one driving the 2-Seater. While Marlon Stockinger (@iamstockinger) drove the F1

  15. reference the development curve of these cars, be great to see McLaren ,slowly reeling them in and maybe catching and overtaking the big guns as the season closes, cmon JB !!!

    1. dodge5847 (@)
      7th May 2013, 9:55

      As a JB fan, I am kind of tempted of putting a little bet on as I am sure the odds are really good, however I don’t see me/him winning.

      1. @dodge5847
        JB is 20-1 to win in Spain, 50-1 to get pole position and 50-1 to win the WDC (McLaren have the same odds for the WCC) at Ladbrokes. That’s pretty big odds but I suspect they’re also quite representative of JB’s chances, even with some pretty good upgrades I can see him struggling this season.

        (Apologies for shamelessly promoting the company I work for :-) )

  16. I must say, some of the comments here (as always with Hamilton), sometimes get on my nerve.

    Somehow, we all lament that we do not have a James Hunt on the grid anymore. But as soon as a great driver acts naturally (and by that, I mean, like a human being), we, as in “the fans”, fall on him like a ton of bricks.

    At the time, Hunt could get away with smoking, boozing, having sex with the entire world, -allegedly- sniffing rails of powder, hitting marshalls and drivers alike and wow, what a likeable man he was. Hamilton has a “serious girl friend”, a dog, and the most extravagant stuff he does is recording his music and wearing a cap the wrong way round. Suddenly he does what we have all done many times (namely, ranting about parents / former boss, which we are indeed grateful for, even if it doesn’t stop us ranting anyway) and wow, what an ungrateful brat he is. He doesn’t even get half the leeway Webber or Raikkonen get. And lets be honest, most of the time, Kimi is just being plain rude.

    I believe great athletes can’t be what we (and their sponsors) would like them to be (perfect). So if for once, one of them would even try the slightest to act normally (or even extraordinarily, I don’t care), I’m all for it. And if by doing so he feels better, happier, it doesn’t even matter if it makes him quicker or not, it seems fair.

    1. Gone are the days when a sportsman had 3 goals. To be good, money, lots of tail. You could get into a car drunk choofing a cigar with your pants at your ankles and win a race. You were called a man. Nowdays you have to be a role model. Apparently that’s what all the young talented people want to do. Be a role model and maybe play some sports on the side. Political correctness, when will it end?

    2. Traverse (@)
      7th May 2013, 11:24

      You sir hit the nail…on the head.

    3. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
      7th May 2013, 11:30

      @tango – Great comment. F1 is still a very conservative organisation, so whilst the Stewarts, the Mosses and Ecclestones love Button, “the Frome charmer”, “hip-hop Hamilton” is viewed with that alienated sense of suspicion more commonly seen among Mail readers. So whilst we embrace the “individuality” of the broody Alonso, opinionated Webber and rude Raikkonen, we claim that the celeb lifestyle of Hamilton is a “distraction”. There is something about Hamilton that will always be subjective, and I fear it is the very fact that Hamilton’s triumphant “rags to riches” tale has not come full circle, with his current glamorous lifestyle being incredibly removed from the working class one of his childhood. However the flak he gets from Moss and Stewart is something much more simple: jealousy. I was there at Autosport International when Jackie Stewart claimed that Hamilton’s lifestyle was an “immense distraction”, but instead of an experienced individual talking about a subject he loves, I saw a man depressed by the inevitability of coming events. In the coming years Lewis Hamilton will replace Jackie Stewart as the most successful British racing driver ever, that is now a certainty. I going to come clean. I voted Conservative, I also read the Telegraph, have a sizable rural abode and enjoy the great refreshing taste of a cucumber sandwich, but listen up Jackie, because I am loving seeing Hamilton being Hamilton. I don’t like tattoos, rap music or Nicole, but if Lewis does, then good for him. Rant over.

      1. Traverse (@)
        7th May 2013, 12:33

        You sir hit the nail…on the head.

      2. Well said Sir! Lewis always seems to get flak anythig he does, or says. You really have to start wondering why. He certainly is not the rudest driver (Kimi), nor the one with the worst attitude (Montoya), nor the laziest (Kimi), nor the most arrogant (Schumacher/ Vettel), nor did he ever live a playboy lifstyle (Button), nor the most scheming (Button/ Piquet), nor the most adept at playing mind games (Alonso), nor the most outspoken (Villneauve), nor the most boring (DiResta). Hell, he is not even the prettiest (Britney) …so why does he receive so much flak?? You really have to start wondering as there are no forthight clear answers.

        So is it ethnic background? His popstar girlfriend? His rapper friends? His inner city upbringing? His “swagger”? None of these answers are politically correct, so if anyone can elucidate me on a clear unprejudiced reason why Lewis Hmilton is so much disliked, and gives a reason that no other driver has ever been guilty of, then i would very much appreciate it. Thanks.

        1. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
          7th May 2013, 20:39

          @kbdavies – I’m sorry to tell you this, but no matter how much society paints itself as the liberal-lefty land of love and compassion, there’s still a whole load of prejudice out there. So unfortunately whilst you can search for factors beyond the ones you outlined, you will struggle to find one, other than the simple dynamic that is jealousy. Also both society and the media likes the moral of a “rags to riches” to be that its always better live an innocent life away from the corruption and complexity of a wealthy and glamorous lifestyle. Unfortunately this hasn’t been the case for Hamilton, so we all have to slump back into the crushing reality of how brilliant wealth and fame is when compared to obscurity and being poor. Oh, what a wonderful world we live in.

          1. I’m sorry to tell you this, but no matter how much society paints itself as the liberal-lefty land of love and compassion, there’s still a whole load of prejudice out there.

            No kidding!

            “I hate that shiver of guilt, betrayal and personal disgust I have just experienced when I voted for Sebastian Vettel, which is something I have never done before.”

            Wow. Just, wow.

          2. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
            8th May 2013, 8:39

            @jonsan – Not getting your point. All you’re pointing out is my hatred of Sebastian Vettel, which I would’ve thought would be pretty obvious given my avatar. And at no point did I say I was a “liberal-lefty”; I’m quite the opposite, in fact I’d put myself closer to the Top Gear presenters on the political (and social) spectrum, than Ed “Wallace” Miliband.

        2. Traverse (@)
          7th May 2013, 23:38

          Excerpt from an interview Mark Webber gave the Independant in March 2008:

          “Also, his career has gone off like a rocket ship, but it won’t always be like that. He’s young and he’s black, which makes him unique in this sport, but that’s got a shelf life. He won’t stop being black but it will stop being a novelty. And he’ll find that some of the column inches, maybe even this season, are totally negative and totally incorrect. That’s not easy to deal with.”

          It would appear that Webber accurately predicted the intolerant and overly negative treatment that Lewis routinely receives (in comparison to other drivers).

          1. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
            8th May 2013, 8:45


            A Timeline of William Brierty’s Opinions on Mark Webber

            2012 British GP – I like Mark Webber
            2012 Brazilian GP – I like Mark Webber
            2013 Malaysian GP – I love Mark Webber
            Yesterday – I like Mark Webber
            After reading your comment – I hate Mark Webber

      3. @william-brierty

        I’d agree overall with some of your points, though I don’t think Lewis will replace Jackie Stewart as the most successful racing driver ever – 3 WDCs in 99 races and a win rate of 27%? Not to say that Stewart doesn’t show some jealousy towards Hamilton (and Vettel as well – with his “you have to win WDCs in different teams to be great”…like Sir Jackie did?).

        I think Lewis understands what distracts him and what doesn’t – and one distraction was the huge amount of sponsor appearances he had to do with McLaren. I don’t think his life style is a distraction. I recall Jackie Stewart feeling stretched thin with a lot of the travel and racing (non F1) he’d do and the toll that took on him – I think he is projecting some of that on Lewis.

        Lewis is doing okay, nor is he saying anything about McLaren or his dad that McLaren and his dad would disagree with. I’m happy he’s in a good place for himself.

        1. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
          7th May 2013, 20:59

          @uan – It won’t be long before Hamilton exceeds 28 wins, and it won’t be much longer before he becomes a triple world champion. And when that day comes, Hamilton be a triple champion with more wins than Jackie Stewart. I don’t care about your percentage, to me and to the world, that would make Hamilton Britain’s most successful racing driver. That day is inevitable.

      4. @william-brierty
        While I agree with almost everything you’ve written I would like to play the working class card on one point ;-)

        with his current glamorous lifestyle being incredibly removed from the working class one of his childhood

        This link below will show you where Lewis lived for several years as a child and it’s hardly a working class area or home.


        Check out the Purple Plaque !
        That’s a four bedroom house in a semi-rural area that sold for £540,000 last year and combined with the fact that his family could afford to pay for him to go karting as a child (even though I greatly admire the fact his Dad worked several jobs to be able to afford it and I’m in no way trying to knock Lewis or his family) I think we can safely say Lewis did not have a working class childhood.

        I know he’s not from the typically upper middle class or aristocratic background or a racing dynasty family that lots of British F1 drivers have come from and agree that his current life is very far removed from his childhood but let’s not stretch things here, Lewis is middle class.

        When I were a lad I had to get up in the morning at ten o’clock at night, half an hour before I went to bed, eat a lump of cold poison, work twenty-nine hours a day down mill, and pay mill owner for permission to come to work, and when we got home, our Dad would kill us, and dance about on our graves singing “Hallelujah.”

        1. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
          8th May 2013, 8:32

          @beneboy – Great point, excellently made! After reading Lewis’ autobiography one could almost get the sense he was brought up in a cave, not half a million pounds worth of house! OK, some of that cost derives from the house’s provenance, but what your comment illustrates brilliantly is just how snobbish society has become. What with Hamilton, the “working class” hero living in a £540,000 house and Kate Middleton, the first “commoner” to marry a future monarch, we get a great insight into social opinions. The second anyone is escalated into fame or fortune, their roots are instantly portrayed in a contorted manner to further exaggerate the magnitude of their triumphant rise through the social order. Wow, I’m still rather shocked by that link!

      5. That is pretty hypocritical, to complain about the treatment Lewis getting and then to treat other drivers in the same way.

        All of the drivers or atleast the top drivers gets critique from time to time. Vettel often gets a lot of critique for the things he says and by mearly pointing a finger in the air. Kimi often gets a lot of critique from journalist, whilst he never actually says anything bad about anyone else. ext. ext.
        It is part of being a public figure.

    4. @Tango Another driver who seems to get nailed to a cross anytime he speaks his mind, is Pastor Maldonado.

      He’s every bit as outspoken and brash as Hamilton is, and in some ways the backlash against him is even worse.

  17. “I can imagine Webber will think: ‘I did the right thing and was prevented from winning that race and now I find myself with a team-mate who doesn’t obey team orders and doesn’t receive any sanction or penalty – so why should I bother obeying team orders?’

    Ha, Silverstone.

    1. @vettel1
      when you isolate the quote, it sounds like bad fiction writing. I don’t think Webber (or anyone) thinks like that at all. Though I think Webber comes from a more old school mentality of team orders and pecking orders within teams.

      Alan Jones recent comments on the matter, referring to Carlos Reutemann ignoring team orders to let Jones (“the defending WDC and senior driver”) win a race reflects that. Though as the 3x defending champion, you’d think Jones would side with Vettel on which way team orders should fall lol.

      1. @uan it was John Watson and that’s pretty much all he said in the article!

        I don’t really have a problem with them criticising Vettel ignoring team orders (I still wouldn’t agree with them, but fair enough), it the hypocrisy that irritates me: they have every time failed to mention that Webber has ignored team orders in the past and try to portray him as an innocent lamb being attacked by the wolf. That’s utter nonsense, hence “ha, Silverstone”.

  18. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
    7th May 2013, 10:59

    There’s something about F1 steering wheels that just fix my gaze. I suppose its the “racing stripes effect” again…

    1. Traverse (@)
      7th May 2013, 13:46

      There’s something about F1 steering wheels that just fix my gaze.

      I know what you mean. She It fixes your gaze doesn’t she it and just…just, begs you to hold her it, caress her it, fondle her it. There’s so many buttons you just don’t know which one to touch first, to stroke…have a look at the shape of the one Hamilton’s holding, I mean, look at those curves on her it! Perfectly designed, perfectly sculptured for my a race drivers hand. And just when you think you’ve seen it all, there’s a little surprise awaiting your finger tips…I’m talking paddle shifters baby!!! Her cheeks It’s paddles are just right; not too soft, not too firm, but just right for your finger tips to fiddle flick to change gear. God I hope I get to kiss use an F1 steering wheel one day.

      1. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
        7th May 2013, 14:10

        That my just be the best comment I have read on this forum, because you sir hit the nail…on the head.

      2. Well done, you have won one Internet.

  19. Sensational heading, seems contrived by the writer though.
    I’ll check for myself what Lewis said exactly….

    1. @jason12 are you questioning Keiths reporting

  20. Most prescient statement Lewis has ever made. No one controls me (not even myself).

  21. What’s the problem in being controlled if you have nothing to hide?
    Considering events such as Melbourne 2009, perhaps Lewis should [have] be[en] more strictly controlled. I think he has matured quite a bit in the meantime but if he has a problem with his father controlling him it means he thinks either he is doing something or his father is.

    1. something *wrong*

  22. Thanks for making me COTD. I love this site , it’s the best one out there. I like the way we can all get a bit carried away in our comments due to our passion for our favourite drivers.

    1. @sonia54 You’re welcome! And thanks.

      1. Traverse (@)
        8th May 2013, 0:14

        I second @sonia54 ‘s appraisal that this site is the best F1 forum on the net, you’ve done an exceptional job. One of the main areas that your site excels at is the page layout/format, it’s crystal clear, devoid of convolution, yet each page is filled to the brim with premium content that manages to capture the complex nuances that make F1 what it is. And unlike other forums I’ve visited, it’s dead easy to distinguish each users comments from another; there’s also a very friendly atmosphere teamed with a high level of professionalism from both yourself and us end-contributors.

        I’ve read F1F for many a year now and I’ve never got the impression that you’re a sensationalist journalist (which makes it all the more baffling to me when people accuse you of partisanship). I hope this site is around for decades to come…VIVA F1F!! :)

  23. Entered here just to see the usual Hamilton bashing (which happened), but was surprised with some really great comments by @tango and @william-brierty. Brilliant.

    1. :D
      Yeah, and it seems the bashers never get tired.

    2. Traverse (@)
      7th May 2013, 19:14

      Sadly, people envy success.

    3. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
      7th May 2013, 20:06

      Read my stuff more often, I’d say it normally classes as “great stuff”.

      1. @william-brierty a wee bit of self-advertising there are we? :P I tend to think I am a great F1 philosopher also, but I imagine most people would disgaree on that basis!

        1. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
          9th May 2013, 10:02

          @vettel1 – No, not so much “self-advertising”, more “tongue-in-cheek arrogance”. Although, yes, I do feel my rather unique and punchy perspective on pretty much everything makes me a rather engaging comment to read, although, when you agree with me, I’d say some of your comments hold validity too. I would certainly expect most people on this site would hold your good self among the more insightful of this site’s regulars.

          1. @william-brierty why thank you very much! At least when I’m not on Alonso attack mode anyway :P

            Yea I was kind of being tongue-in-cheek also but I’m not saying I disagree with you: I do find you raise some very thought-provoking and insightful points!

          2. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
            10th May 2013, 8:38

            @vettel1 – Oh, I’m blushing now.

  24. It seems that Lewis was thrown out of McLaren s garage recently as he went to say hello.

    And you feel he should not say what he feels even if it is as innocuous as what he said.

    Shouldn’t he be happy to be freer? And decide who he endorses and gets revenue from?

    Give the guy a break.

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