OK, OK, I don’t think Lewis Hamilton has officially called out Grace on this one, but he may as well have.
According to the Daily Mail, the McLaren driver is maintaining he doesn’t need to hire a manager (or find a new “father figure”) any time soon, despite his eventful weekend in Australia.
‘It was an interesting weekend. ‘I am glad to be back in Malaysia and to be having a bit of space.
‘It wasn’t a great few days in Australia. But take a way a couple of mistakes – one by me and one by the team collectively – and I think we can look to take some big points at the next race in Malaysia.’
‘I’m leaving it for a while. I am happy at the moment. It’s a big transition, and I have a lot of good people around me. There is no need to rush.’
(The Mail also notes that 80% of Australians surveyed agreed with Mark Webber’s reaction to Lewis’ “Hoongate” incident, saying it was, basically a bunch of stupid, nanny-state laws.)
Something I find interesting from all the dust-ups, which include the hooning incident, his poor qualifying and his berating the team over the radio, is that coming into the weekend, Hamilton seemed in pretty fine spirits. He’d stopped in Los Angeles to watch his girlfriend compete on “Dancing with the Stars” and talked about how his travel to Australia was the easiest ever.
What a difference a few days can make.
I will be shocked if in the first few days after Malaysia, once Lewis and the McLaren team are back in the UK, he doesn’t announce a new management team or some kind of official posse.
And I’ll float this: If Lewis doesn’t hire a manager soon, I think that will be the public side to an internal battle going on between him and Martin Whitmarsh. (And off to the side will be a very personable Jenson Button, more and more turning McLaren into his team.)
So, while this whole story arguably has been blown out of proportion (although it has been fun to talk about, and that’s a big part of the mission here, remember), there are some substantial pieces to pay attention to as the days pass. It may not just be a silly, trumped-up story. There might be some fire with that smoke. (Or it could just be smoke from Lewis’ doing doughnuts.)