Mercedes rivalry with Rosberg is healthy for F1, Hamiton reckons

Lewis Hamilton believes his rivalry with Nico Rosberg is "healthy" for Formula 1, and has insisted "there are no issues" with his Mercedes team-mate

Mercedes rivalry with Rosberg is healthy for F1, Hamiton reckons

Hamilton's remarks come in the wake of Mercedes motorsport boss Toto Wolff's recent warning that if the relationship between the duo spilled over and became detrimental to the team then Mercedes would consider a line-up change.

It was a line repeated by Wolff ahead of Mercedes 'Stars & Cars' event in Stuttgart on Saturday, and with both drivers sat either side of him.

Asked by Autosport for their thoughts on Wolff's remarks, initially Rosberg said: "I hope Toto always comes back to the conclusion that actually it's good the way it is. That's all I can say."

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Rosberg then added to Wolff: "Thank you very much for having done such a great job in managing the situation - I can see a couple of extra grey hairs that have arrived - so maybe those are courtesy of us."

Following on, Hamilton said: "I very much agree with Nico - that might be the first time this year we've done that!

"It [the rivalry with Rosberg] is healthy for the sport. We have a great energy within the team. I don't believe there is anything negative.

"It is natural in any environment, you want to make sure the atmosphere remains strong, and we are a winning team, and we want Mercedes to remain at the front the whole time.

"There's nothing we can't do together, so we will always communicate as we always have, and we will always rectify when we have any issues.

"We don't now, there are no issues."

AVOIDING CONTROVERSY THE KEY

Prior to that Wolff had again reiterated his thoughts from earlier, saying: "We love the competition on track and we think that controversy and the racing needs to be hard, and was great.

"It's good for the team because it pushes us forward, gets us out of our comfort zone and is nothing less than to be expected from Nico and Lewis, and it's good for Formula 1 as well, and that is important to say.

"There is nothing we want to do in limiting that racing, and it was actually our philosophy from the first moment on that we opted for two drivers who could win the world championship.

"Because it is very competitive and very fierce, it is important to contain that and make sure it doesn't spill into the team, and it doesn't cause controversy within the garage.

"This is one team and we are moving forward together, and Nico and Lewis know very well what was meant.

"The spirit within the team is essential. It is one of the forces which makes us who we are and what we are, and if there is animosity within the team, that would be detrimental.

"I said if we were unable to contain that fierce competition and if it were to spill over into the team then we would need to look at how we set up the driver line-up for the future."

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