Lewis Hamilton has won seven F1 Drivers’ Championships so far. The first one came with McLaren and the remaining six with Mercedes. Except for 2008 and the first halves of 2017 and 2018, his stiffest challenges have come from his teammates. 2021 happens to be another exception as it is Red Bull’s Max Verstappen who is now his main championship rival. In an interview with F1’s official website, Hamilton has now explained why he prefers fighting with a driver from another team for the championship
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0:00 - Hamilton Prefers Not Having To Fight Teammate For Championship
1:57 - Fast Feed
I'm your host Dillon Shelley and first up on Formula World:
Hamilton Prefers Not Having To Fight Teammate For Championship
Hamilton began by pointing out the similarities this season has to the 2017 and 2018 season
“I feel like we’ve had this sort like battle, it feels similar to the battle with Vettel in the Ferrari. And maybe it’s even closer than that. When you grow up, you have this wheel-on-wheel battles in karting every day, every weekend. So, it’s great to see we have this close and tight battles”
He then explained why fighting against a driver from a different team is better
“It’s much more enjoyable than when you’re having an internal battle, because this sport is different to other sports”
He compared F1 to other team sports like football to highlight the unique nature of F1
“If you’re looking at football, everyone is looking towards the same goal. This sport is a kind of confused because you have two championships: the team championship which two drivers are hired to score points for the team to win the championship. That’s the priority”
He then contrasted that with the individual ambitions of the drivers from the same team
“And then individually you have the two drivers that selfishly want to win the championship. So, you got this battle of tension and when you’re working against the guy opposite you, it’s very different working with that person and fighting another team”
He summed up his thoughts by reiterating his preference for a battle that isn’t internal
“That is what I think makes better racing. That makes the championship more exciting when it’s team against team rather than internal”
Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko has stated that they're “not afraid of Silverstone” [Motorsport-Total]
“We were competitive with our car on all tracks. We did not always win, but we were competitive everywhere”, Marko suggested
He also confirmed that they “are currently in the final phase of formulating the contract. Honda will still build the engines in 2022. However, not on the same financial basis as has been the case so far”
Aston Martin team owner Lawrence Stroll feels that they’re “currently in a good place. [They] share Mercedes’ wind tunnel, so [they’re] in one of the best wind tunnels” [F1.com]
He added that “facilities-wise, [they’ve] definitely outgrown [their] facilities. [They’re] putting up a lot of temporary facilities around [their] site in order to accommodate all these new hires”
He further thinks they’ll “be in the new place in 18 months, call it 20 months, the end of next year”
“We’re not really compromising on anything. Formula 1, like any other business, I don’t think you could realistically plan on winning before four or five years”, Stroll concluded
Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc has stated that for him “it was not a risk - [he] was signing for five years for the team [he has] always been dreaming of” [Beyond the Grid podcast]
He, however, added that he “would be even more happy if [they] get back to winning, because that's what matters, and [he knows] that this is what matters also for the whole team”
Alfa Romeo have announced a multi-year extension to their agreement with Sauber that will include yearly assessments [F1.com]
Alfa Romeo Team Principal Fred Vasseur feels that “as a team, [they] have made the biggest step forward across the grid this season, even though the results don’t show as well as the data yet”
He added that “[they] are a very efficient team in the way [they] use resources, [they] have been operating just below the cap for years”
“So [they] won’t need to go through painful adjustments like some of [their] rivals. [They] feel [they] can be one of the surprise packages of the next era”
Red Bull team principal Christian Horner, meanwhile, pointed out that “Max [Verstappen] is in the form of his life, and the car has been performing really well” [Sky Sports]
“And of course, it's our home race as well, our second home race in succession”, Horner added
What type of championship battles do you enjoy more?
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