Fresh details have emerged on the Hamilton and Rosberg feud. The intriguing details reveal that Mercedes once gave the duo an ultimatum; a repeat of their collision and they could get fired!
Niki Lauda, Mercedes non-executive chairman, finally weighed in on this F1 feud that did cost Mercedes in Barcelona.
The three-time F1 Drivers champion brings out a picture of friendship broken on the track. According to Lauda, the two had been friends during their early karting days. However, they soon found themselves on top of the world, each with dreams of being Mercedes’ main man. Perhaps the trigger was the fact that at the time, Formula 1 competition was between Hamilton and Rosberg, both wanted to be Formula 1 champion.
The rivalry’s boiling point was in the 2016 Grand Prix where they got themselves in a collision debacle costing Mercedes denting their campaign efforts. The Mercedes drivers crashed out after a collision that brewed a blame game between the two. Rosberg blamed his teammate but Hamilton heavily defended. This was an ugly incident that brought out the rivalry between the two. It showed that they were at a point where they were putting their personal interests before Mercedes.
In a heated exchange of words, Rosberg accused Hamilton of going too much on the inside and left no space. On his part, Hamilton only said he was racing. In Lauda’s opinion, it was all Hamilton’s fault. At the end of the day, Hamilton’s aggressiveness to the right was not necessary. He forced to the right hitting the grass, and wasn’t able to stop his car and ended up colliding with Rosberg.
For Mercedes, it wasn’t going to be business as usual, a decision had to be reached and one of them was some regulation. They were not allowed to collide and in the event they did, there was a penalty that would even result to facing the sack.
In the long run, Mercedes finished first and Rosberg won the battle beating Hamilton by 5 points. In a shocking turn of events, Rosberg retired!