David Coulthard has told Lewis Hamilton that he should appoint a new manager as soon as possible so he can concentrate on his job behind the wheel and challenging for the F1 2010 drivers' title.
Hamilton had a weekend to forget in Australia, limping home sixth after being taken out by Red Bull's Mark Webber, while his new team-mate and fellow countryman, Jenson Button took the win. He also failed to make it through to the top-ten shoot-out in qualifying on the Saturday and had to suffer the embarrassment of having his Mercedes road car impounded after his run-in with the local police on the Friday.
Post-race Hamilton was critical of his team too for ruining what he described as one of the 'best drives of his life' with the wrong strategy. While he has since said that he understands what the team was doing [see separate story - click here
], it hasn't stopped the critics.
Indeed DC believes that Hamilton's failure to appoint a successor to his father, Anthony – who acted as his manager up until this year - is a mistake and that something is definitely 'amiss'.
"Where is the reassuring arm around his shoulder? Where is the sound advice coming from? Where is his father?" Coulthard asked in his latest column for British newspaper, The Daily Telegraph
"Lewis's decision to dispense with Anthony's services as his manager last month was hailed as a coming-of-age move on his part. But the folly of not appointing a replacement showed over the weekend. Having no manager is like a top tennis player having no coach. It's fine when you are playing well but as soon as you are struggling people will point to it as a weakness.
"I don't know if they have had a bust-up but it does strike me as odd that apparently they did not speak to one another in the aftermath of Friday's incident. Either way, Lewis needs to appoint a replacement soon so he can concentrate on his day job."
Coulthard meanwhile added that Hamilton's 'brush with the law' was a bit of a storm in a teacup and – somewhat controversially – the Scot added he couldn't see what all the fuss was about.
"All sorts of questions arise from the incident when Hamilton was stopped by the Melbourne police. What has happened to Lewis' relationship with his father? Why was he in such a “distressed” state on Saturday? Come to that, why did everyone get so worked up about it all in the first place?
"I know I'll get accused of being irresponsible here, but I really don't see the big deal about Lewis indulging in a little burnout for the fans. In my view, the reaction to what was essentially a minor incident was completely over the top.
"I understand the road-safety issue, but Lewis is one of the best drivers on this planet. There is no one I would trust more to burn a bit of rubber and keep the car under perfect control. A minor slap on the wrist would have sufficed, although it would have been even more constructive to commit him to some sort of road safety project in Melbourne schools for next year."