Hamilton: Rosberg exit, vegan diet helped me reach new level

Lewis Hamilton says a new dynamic at Mercedes following Nico Rosberg’s departure – plus becoming vegan - have helped lift him to a new level in Formula 1 this year.

Hamilton: Rosberg exit, vegan diet helped me reach new level
Podium: race winner Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1, second place Nico Rosberg, Mercedes AMG F1
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W08
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W08
Race winner Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W08, Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes AMG F1 W08
Nico Rosberg, Mercedes AMG F1 with team mate Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 in the FIA Press Conference
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid leads Nico Rosberg, Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid, Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari SF16-H
The podium: second place Nico Rosberg, Mercedes AMG F1 celebrates his World Championship with race winner and team mate Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1

The Briton stands on the verge of his fourth world championship title after victory in the United States Grand Prix, and his 66-points advantage means he is likely to take the crown in Mexico this weekend.

Reflecting on his campaign, Hamilton says Rosberg’s exit, a clear-the-air chat with boss Toto Wolff last winter and a decision to stop eating meat have served to transform him.

“Going and seeing Toto at the end of last year was crucial in solidifying the longevity in the team,” said Hamilton.

“We just put everything on the table and said what needed to be said. And then to build on creating a new stronger relationship which we have done.”

He added: “Me personally, I feel the best I have ever felt, physically and mentally. All year I have felt strong mentally, but physically I have taken a big step and that is with the decision I have taken to change my diet.

“The best decision was moving to this team, the second-best was changing my diet, at Singapore. But I was still driving pretty good before that.

“Ultimately you always try to live to your potential and drive to your potential and right now was like the greatest day. I felt I was able to be in that zone. It is the greatest feeling.”

Hamilton, who has worked hard to maximise productivity from the way he interacts with his engineers and the time he spends at the factory, says his energy is being focused on improving this year – rather than getting wasted on the intra-team rivalry with Rosberg.

“People in the team will be able to tell you what the dynamic was, and for sure I can’t say it was great last year,” he said. “But this year for sure having that talk with Toto and coming in and really working on the relationship with the guys: don’t mess with it.

“The formula works and I just want to continue to build on that relationship, which we have.

“My guys did an exceptional job and my relationship with the whole team, both sides, is stronger than it has ever been. I think the time I spend with the engineers back here is better than ever.

“It’s great also that we are fighting with another team so the focus is different. When you have two strong drivers in the team, as we had. well, when the battle is within the team, it’s like a hurricane, with strong energy, and it is just stuck in the room.

“Whereas now, together, we have this hurricane or whatever bundle of energy which we are firing to the car, and it is overall a much happier dynamic.”

Asked if he could achieved the happy dynamic this year if Rosberg had remained, Hamilton responded bluntly: “No.”

shares
comments
Liberty facing dilemma over idea to ditch F1 Fridays

Previous article

Liberty facing dilemma over idea to ditch F1 Fridays

Next article

Which F1 race would you choose to go to in style? Here's your chance

Which F1 race would you choose to go to in style? Here's your chance
Load comments
The floundering fortunes of F1’s many Lotus reboots Prime

The floundering fortunes of F1’s many Lotus reboots

Team Lotus ceased to exist in 1994 - and yet various parties have been trying to resurrect the hallowed name, in increasingly unrecognisable forms, ever since. Damien Smith brings GP Racing’s history of the legendary team to an end with a look at those who sought to keep the flame alive in Formula 1.

Why the 2021 title fight is far from F1's worst, despite its toxic background Prime

Why the 2021 title fight is far from F1's worst, despite its toxic background

OPINION: Formula 1 reconvenes for the Russian Grand Prix two weeks after the latest blow in ‘Max Verstappen vs Lewis Hamilton’. While the Silverstone and Monza incidents were controversial, they thankfully lacked one element that so far separates the 2021 title fight from the worst examples of ugly championship battles

How Mika Hakkinen thrived at Lotus Prime

How Mika Hakkinen thrived at Lotus

Mika Hakkinen became Michael Schumacher’s biggest rival in Formula 1 in the late-90s and early 2000s, having also made his F1 debut in 1991. But as MARK GALLAGHER recalls, while Schumacher wowed the world with a car that was eminently capable, Hakkinen was fighting to make his mark with a famous team in terminal decline

Formula 1
Sep 21, 2021
The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey  Prime

The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey 

Before Michael Schumacher – or anyone else – had driven the 191 (or 911 as it was initially called), Eddie Jordan turned to a fellow Irishman to test his new Formula 1 car. JOHN WATSON, a grand prix winner for Penske and McLaren, recalls his role in the birth of a legend…

Formula 1
Sep 20, 2021
The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog Prime

The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog

A podium finisher in its first outing but then never again, the BRM P201 was a classic case of an opportunity squandered by disorganisation and complacency, says Stuart Codling.

Formula 1
Sep 18, 2021
The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from Prime

The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from

OPINION: The headlines were dominated by the Italian Grand Prix clash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton, who had the halo to thank for avoiding potentially serious injury. But two days earlier, Formula 1 had a lucky escape with a Monza pitlane incident that could also have had grave consequences.

Formula 1
Sep 17, 2021
How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum Prime

How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum

With two sprint races under its belt, Formula 1 must now consider its options for them going forward. While they've helped deliver exciting racing on Sundays, the sprints themselves have been somewhat lacking - creating yet another conundrum for F1 to solve...

Formula 1
Sep 16, 2021
Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season? Prime

Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season?

OPINION: With Valtteri Bottas already signed up for 2022, all eyes are on the race for the second seat at Alfa Romeo next year. Antonio Giovinazzi is the current incumbent, but faces a tough competition from appealing short and long-term prospects

Formula 1
Sep 15, 2021