Lewis Hamilton says he will only reveal the truth of the reason why Mercedes switched some of his mechanics to Nico Rosberg’s car for 2016 when he writes a book “in 10 years’ time”.
At the start of the season, Mercedes switched some personnel from Hamilton’s two-time title-winning crew to Rosberg’s car – and vice versa.
There were five differences in personnel on each side – a combination of swaps and new personnel coming in as the result of staff turnover. Mercedes did not alter the engineering roster, but did switch the number one mechanics on each car.
The move was made because Mercedes motorsport boss Toto Wolff felt that shuffling staff around in such a manner would prevent the two sides of the garage splitting into factions.
When Rosberg was asked about the topic ahead of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, Hamilton interjected by saying to Rosberg: “I want to hear the reason you were given...”
Speaking later on about the matter, Hamilton said: “You have to buy my book in 10 years’ time to find out exactly what happened. It will be an interesting read.”
Rosberg says reasoning is clear
While Hamilton offered intrigue about the matter, Rosberg was quite firm in his response to the issue.
“If you look at recent team spirit in team we have been fighting for three years,” said Rosberg. “We are fighting for race wins and championships, it is quite natural that a little separation can happen between two sides of the garage.
"So from an overall team performance that is not a good thing. For the overall team performance you want great team spirit, everybody fighting for one direction and working together.
“And that is why the decision was taken to rotate a little bit and it has shown this year that is a very, very good thing to do.
“Our team spirit is as good as ever, we had some great parties together and everyone sticking together and it is an awesome feeling within the team, so it looks like for sure it was the right thing to do.
“Even though, of course, initially, it is not something that is super comfortable, because my mechanics were close to me and it feels good and everything, to then change takes time to gel. But I understand that from a team perspective it was the right thing to do and it worked quite well.”