Hamilton: Tensions are not hurting Mercedes

Lewis Hamilton insists that the situation between himself and Nico Rosberg is not damaging for his Mercedes team, despite boss Toto Wolff's warning that the pair need to sort their relationship out or risk being replaced.

Hamilton: Tensions are not hurting Mercedes
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 on the grid
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 on the drivers parade
Race winner Nico Rosberg, Mercedes AMG F1 celebrates with second place Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 and the team
Second place Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 and race winner Nico Rosberg, Mercedes AMG F1 in the FIA Press Conference
Second place Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W06
Race winner Nico Rosberg, Mercedes AMG F1 celebrates on the podium
Second place Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 Team
Race winner Nico Rosberg, Mercedes AMG F1 celebrates in parc ferme
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 Team

Wolff told Motorsport.com after the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix that the team may have to rethink its driver line-up if tensions between Hamilton and Rosberg do not improve.

"We struggle sometimes in winning races on Sunday and having always one [driver] upset," said Wolff. "And this spills over into the team. It is something that needs to stop."

Responding to Wolff's comments during an appearance on BBC Radio 1 on Thursday, Hamilton felt that there was no evidence that the situation between him and Rosberg was hurting Mercedes.

"It is kind of crazy and they shouldn't really call us teammates as such," said Hamilton. "The problem is there are two championships, [while] in football there is one championship.

"For us there is the constructors' championship and that is what they hire us and pay us to do, but individually we want to win the championship. So it is difficult.

"But this side [of teammate tension] is always blown out of proportion. We have had 16 1-2s, so our relationship isn't really causing any problems.

"It is not like he has been distracted and not finished high up or vice versa, so I think ultimately it is easy for people to take things for granted. We have both done a great job.

"We have not caused any problems, and the energy within the team is as high as it is ever going to be. And that is because we do what we do, and how we do it.

"We are never going to be best friends but somehow we make it work. There are tension moments...but that is the same in any kind of sport I imagine."

2016 recovery

Hamilton also said he had no doubts he had what it takes to respond to Rosberg's strong end of season form to be back on top at the start of next year.

"I do. I feel good," he said. "I have been racing for 22 years and whatever I have done in the past has worked.

"The last couple of years I have come back pretty strongly for sure. That is the plan.

"You never know what is going to happen, but I am going to be working hard, working on my fitness, and I have every plan to come back strong." 

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