Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg have given their marriage another go. There’s been a bit of f*cking around, a few bust ups and at times, pure hatred, but the Silver Arrows duo have decided to make love and not war.
Their relationship as team-mates has been one of the key components in defining the F1 narrative over the past two-and-a-half years. With that comes obvious pressure, and at times, this pressure has boiled over.
This season, incidents between the two have cost Mercedes points and in some cases, credibility. The most notable on-track mess came at the Spanish GP, when Hamilton or Rosberg crashed into Rosberg or Hamilton (Fanboy calming strategy). Off-track conversations haven’t helped Lewis Hamilton much either, the driver put into the awkward position of having to defend his team against a very small minority of his supporters who have accused Mercedes of deliberately manipulating Hamilton’s car.
Hamilton has been speaking of how his relationship with Rosberg has developed organically into something better than it has been in a long time.
“It’s actually really good with Nico at the moment. Really, really good. Surprisingly. I would definitely not have expected it to be where it is. I guess it is probably with age. He’s a family man. He’s got a kid. He has probably grown in that process and I have grown and come of age. The respect that we have always talked about is bigger than it has ever been.
So now we generally just discuss things. Whether we’re unhappy about something or not, we discuss it face to face. If I have a problem, I knock on his door and ask if I can speak to him privately. We never address it publicly or in front of the team. So far, at least.
We say straight up, ‘Hey man, I wasn’t cool with that’. And he does that to me as often as I do to him. The other day, I was swimming in my pool – the building we live in in Monaco, there is a shared communal pool – and I guess he saw me from his apartment and came down and sat on the diving board and when I finished a few laps, we sat and talked for 20 minutes or half an hour. In a relaxed state.”
While there is no mandate or necessary advantage to harmony in a race team, and face value statements to the outside world can only be taken with a pinch of salt, it’s refreshing to hear that hatred between the two has dissipated a bit.
When the visor goes down and racing resumes in Austria though, expect these two to be racers again.