Lewis Hamilton dismisses Toto Wolff’s comments

Published: Sunday 15th November 2015 by The News Editor

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Lewis Hamilton has dismissed his boss Toto Wolff’s claim that he is “absolutely aware” Mercedes want to ensure Nico Rosberg finishes second in the Formula One championship.

Hamilton will start behind Rosberg at the Brazilian Grand Prix after the German secured his fifth pole position in as many races on Saturday.

Rosberg is 21 points clear of Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel in the race for second with just two races here in Brazil, and in Abu Dhabi in a fortnight’s time remaining.

After Hamilton clinched the championship in Austin last month and Mercedes sealed the team title in Russia, Wolff was asked what his target is for the rest of the campaign.

“There is a gentleman at the back of the room who needs to finish second in the championship so that is important,” said Wolff with Rosberg also in the team’s motorhome.

“The primary objective is to make Nico score a lot of points to secure second in the championship.

“Lewis is absolutely aware this is a team exercise.”

While Wolff also added that Rosberg, who ended his winless streak at the last race in Mexico, does not require any help in winning, his remark appeared to be news to Hamilton.

“Firstly, no-one in the team has told me that so in terms of ‘I know that’ that is not really the case,” said Hamilton when asked about Wolff’s comments. “We are racing as far as I am concerned.”

Wolff’s admission that the team’s main goal is for Rosberg to secure the runner-up spot in the championship comes after sceptics speculated that his victory in Mexico was orchestrated by the team.

Hamilton was ordered to pit for a second time while leading the race despite his reservations. It led the Briton to say his team have felt the need to be “extra warm” to Rosberg since he won the title.

The German told Press Association Sport earlier this week that he considered Hamilton’s comments to be an “excuse” for failing to follow up his championship triumph at Austin by winning the ensuing race in Mexico.

The relationship between the two drivers appears to be at an all-time low after successive seasons in which they have battled it out for the championship.

Indeed the pair could not even bring themselves to so much as exchange glances as they crossed paths while conducting their post-qualifying media duties in the Mercedes motorhome on Saturday.

Hamilton, who mysteriously did not appear for the traditional top-three photo alongside Rosberg and Vettel after qualifying, has failed to secure pole since the Italian Grand Prix in September – a streak which now stretch to six races.

“My main job this year is done now,” Hamilton said in response. “I’ve won most poles this year and the world championship, so there’s nothing really to read into it.”

Published: Sunday 15th November 2015 by The News Editor

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