Lewis Hamilton 'a different person' without Nico Rosberg - Mercedes

Nico Rosberg's departure from the Mercedes Formula 1 team has helped Lewis Hamilton become a "different person" and much more of a team player, claims his boss Toto Wolff

Lewis Hamilton 'a different person' without Nico Rosberg - Mercedes

Hamilton is paired with Valtteri Bottas this year following Rosberg's abrupt retirement days after claiming the 2016 F1 title.

Wolff has noticed a big change in Hamilton in 2016 and thinks Rosberg's exit removing "animosity" that had started to affect the garage is key to that.

"The dynamic has changed," explained Wolff.

"The dynamic between Lewis and Nico in the end went from friendship to rivalry, from rivalry to controversy, and from controversy to animosity.

"And because they play such an essential role in the team, that spills over to the team.

"Then, where we ended up, is all the time managing this situation.

"And you could see at times there were two sides of the garage as they got sucked into the rivalry.

"This has stopped.

"Lewis has developed in a very impressive way as a personality over the winter. He came back a different person."

Wolff said Hamilton now fully understands how his approach can shape the team's atmosphere.

"He is not a contractor anymore, like we used to call drivers, as every team calls drivers, but he has become a team member in an authentic way," Wolff said.

"He feels part of the team, he understands what the thinking of the team is, that we help each other, and that sometimes there will be difficult moments. But it doesn't mean we need to fall out.

"The situation with Valtteri helps. They respect each other, they get on with each other very well and there is no controversy, a lot of respect.

"I see Lewis being happy for Valtteri that he settled in well, Valtteri acknowledging that Lewis has been with the team for a long time and is a triple world champion. It is a perfect dynamic between the two of them.

"Having said that, I don't think you always need to have happy/happy in the team, as disruption is important.

"Difficult people ask difficult questions, difficult questions make you perform better. Difficult situations make you perform better.

"So we don't want to be in a comfort zone. That is not what is happening.

"There are still rough discussions we are having in the team but it is with no animosity at all. So it is much better."

Wolff acknowledged that losing Rosberg has changed the level of engineering input from drivers, which had been one of the reigning champion's strengths.

"Nico played a very important role in the development of the team," added Wolff.

"If one [driver] had a bad day and couldn't find the direction of the car, the other one would do and then eventually they would help each other indirectly.

"And he had an engineering-like attitude that helped us also in the development. So that is missed.

"But I think we found the best guy out there to step into his shoes."

shares
comments

Monaco Grand Prix: Vettel leads Ferrari one-two in final practice

Raikkonen takes Monaco Grand Prix F1 pole, Hamilton goes out in Q2

How "only tough" Tost's public lack of trust could hurt AlphaTauri

How "only tough" Tost's public lack of trust could hurt AlphaTauri

Plus
Plus
Formula 1
Saudi Arabian GP
Jake Boxall-Legge

How "only tough" Tost's public lack of trust could hurt AlphaTauri How "only tough" Tost's public lack of trust could hurt AlphaTauri

What Perez's Jeddah joy means for F1’s 2023 hopes for a real title fight

What Perez's Jeddah joy means for F1’s 2023 hopes for a real title fight

Plus
Plus
Formula 1
Saudi Arabian GP
Alex Kalinauckas

What Perez's Jeddah joy means for F1’s 2023 hopes for a real title fight What Perez's Jeddah joy means for F1’s 2023 hopes for a real title fight

Saudi Arabian Grand Prix Driver Ratings 2023

Saudi Arabian Grand Prix Driver Ratings 2023

Plus
Plus
Formula 1
Saudi Arabian GP
Alex Kalinauckas

Saudi Arabian Grand Prix Driver Ratings 2023 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix Driver Ratings 2023

How Perez kept Verstappen’s Saudi Arabian GP surge at bay

How Perez kept Verstappen’s Saudi Arabian GP surge at bay

Plus
Plus
Formula 1
Saudi Arabian GP
Jake Boxall-Legge

How Perez kept Verstappen’s Saudi Arabian GP surge at bay How Perez kept Verstappen’s Saudi Arabian GP surge at bay

The enormous job facing F1 for its Vegas gamble to pay off

The enormous job facing F1 for its Vegas gamble to pay off

Plus
Plus
Formula 1
Las Vegas GP
GP Racing

The enormous job facing F1 for its Vegas gamble to pay off The enormous job facing F1 for its Vegas gamble to pay off

Testing times for Vasseur, but the true challenge at Ferrari is about to come

Testing times for Vasseur, but the true challenge at Ferrari is about to come

Plus
Plus
Formula 1
Saudi Arabian GP
Jonathan Noble

Testing times for Vasseur, but the true challenge at Ferrari is about to come Testing times for Vasseur, but the true challenge at Ferrari is about to come

How the F1 driver expression saga continues to have a Lineker-like problem

How the F1 driver expression saga continues to have a Lineker-like problem

Plus
Plus
Formula 1
Saudi Arabian GP
Alex Kalinauckas

How the F1 driver expression saga continues to have a Lineker-like problem How the F1 driver expression saga continues to have a Lineker-like problem

Why a Mercedes U-turn couldn't deny Sauber's F1 debut surprise

Why a Mercedes U-turn couldn't deny Sauber's F1 debut surprise

Plus
Plus
Formula 1
Adam Cooper

Why a Mercedes U-turn couldn't deny Sauber's F1 debut surprise Why a Mercedes U-turn couldn't deny Sauber's F1 debut surprise