Mercedes Formula One boss Toto Wolff reiterated his threat to drop one of their two drivers if Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg can’t get along, reports Sky Sports. It is unsure if he also mentioned “stopping this minivan right here” or “not being mad, but disappointed,” about the pair, but perhaps he should have.
Wolff wants the duo to get along with each other despite the fact that the feuding duo has brought Mercedes many 1-2 finishes this year anyway.
Wolff said at the Autosport Awards dinner, as quoted by Sky Sports:
If it were to become detrimental to the team that would mean that we would not maintain the long-term set-up in the team with the drivers.
It’s very important to keep the spirit within the team, and the competition between Nico and Lewis has been very fierce, very competitive at times. It’s understandable because they are fighting in a car that is capable of winning the championship against each other.
The guy in the other car cannot be your friend, but we need to be careful that it doesn’t spill over on both sides of the garage. We’ve seen teams in the past where there is a competition being created that is not good for the dynamics within the team.
Sky Sports reports that the relationship between the two is at an all-time low, as the two barely speak to each other.
Toto Wolff is sounding more and more like an exasperated father trying to get these two to play nice with each other. While Hamilton recently told the BBC Radio 1 Breakfast show that the conflict is overblown and a bit exaggerated, he also admits that there are moments of tension—and chuckles that he wishes F1 was a bit more like hockey sometimes.
What’s more important, Hamilton argued to the Radio 1 Breakfast show, is the fact that the two drivers have remained focused on winning. All those 1-2 finishes weren’t flukes. Mercedes simply has a talented, hyper-competitive driver lineup.
However, Papa Wolff would certainly get angry at a driver waving a hockey stick around, though. Not only would the stick get taken away very quickly, but I’m certain someone would be in for a lengthy grounding—at the very least.
Wolff’s serious this time, you guys. He wants his drivers to go to their rooms until they’ve thought about what they’ve done, and knock it off.
That being said, it is the offseason, therefore, we’re primarily talking about this ongoing tension because Wolff keeps bringing it up. Otherwise, we’d be talking about the 2016 cars, Renault-related drama and the things we need to fix on our own track beaters. I suspect things might have a better chance at cooling off if Wolff would simply let the two work it out quietly, without dragging the pair’s most controversial moments back into the spotlight.
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