If the race in Hungary wasn’t enough excitement, adding a little controversy to the equation may be just what you need. During the race on Sunday, Lewis Hamilton was asked to let him 3-stopping teammate, Nico Rosberg, by so he could get on with his race. The German was on newer tires and being behind Hamilton was not the fastest way to make his strategy work or at least that was the thinking of the team.
Lewis, on the other hand, didn’t move over for Nico and told the press:
“Obviously I am aware that I was in the same race as him, just because he had one more stop than me doesn’t mean I am not in same race,” Hamilton argued.
“If I let him past then he could pull away and come back at me later.
“I was very, very shocked that the team would ask me to do that [move aside].
“He didn’t get close enough to overtake, I was not going to lift off and lose ground to Fernando [Alonso] or Daniel [Ricciardo], so it was a bit strange.”
Oh how the internet raged when “Multi 21” happened but is this similar? Should Lewis have let Nico pass? There is a strong feeling that Nico was never close to Lewis so why should he let him pass? That’s what I was thinking while watching the race but I then recalled that running close to the car in front of you wreaks havoc on your tire wear and take serious aero off your front wing while running in dirty air. Was Nico keeping his distance to keep his tires in one piece or was he simply just too slow to hang with hamilton?
How did you see the incident? Is this a case of disobeying team orders and putting yourself above the team or is it simply a case of, “if you want the spot, come and get it”? If you are a Hamilton fan, there were several of those occasions in the last four years with Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel that drew your ire against the German so is this different somehow?
Did Rosberg ask the team to get Lewis out of the way? According to him, he did not ask but was told by the team that Lewis would be moving over:
“I didn’t want it, it was the team that informed me that he was going to let me past,” said Rosberg after the race.
“That was it. I don’t know what happened then. We need to discuss it.”
So how did you see the issue? All is fair in love and racing or is Lewis in the wrong here? Having replayed the incident, the radio message played on the world feed revealed that the team asked him not to hold Nico up but Lewis clearly didn’t feel he was holding anyone up. While I am not sure Lewis should be shocked, I do think Lewis held his position and Nico should have made more of an attempt to pass in order to signal that Lewis was, indeed, holding him up. If he wasn’t on Hamilton’s tail there fair game. What may have been said offline is a conversation I have not heard or read.