Lewis Hamilton's surprisingly upbeat demeanour after finishing second to Mercedes team-mate and F1 world championship rival Nico Rosberg in Australia might just be explained by the Briton's outlook on the current state of the sport.
Having added his name to the letter sent to the powers-that-be after Melbourne, despite not being an active member of the Grand Prix Drivers' Association, Hamilton has repeated his fears that F1 is no longer an exciting prospect for the fans, and only appears to be heading further into the chasm with the rules being proposed for next season. The three-time world champion is no fan of adding downforce and aero grip, claiming that it only detracts from the sort of wheel-to-wheel racing he - and, he suspects, his rivals - enjoyed as they took their very first laps in racing.
"Back in 2000, when I was racing karts, some of the best races I had then were with Nico and a bunch of other drivers - and it was more exciting," Hamilton told journalists on the eve of the Bahrain Grand Prix, "Our point is that we just want to make the racing better.
"We're known as fit drivers, but it has to be physically draining. At the end of the race, you have to be exhausted, you have to race all the way and not have to do fuel economy and that sort of stuff. People don't care about that, people want to see you race to the end of the race, they want to see you sweat your nuts off to get past with a fantastic manoeuvre. They want to see wheel-to-wheel racing, they want to see battles, they want to see smoke coming out the back of the car at some stage…"
Asked whether he would rather see a more competitive F1, with multiple teams and drivers capable of winning races, and perhaps have to endure winning one week and finishing fifth or sixth the next, Hamilton insisted that winning was no longer all that mattered.
"We want more racing, we want more teams involved," he claimed, "One of the best races was here in 2014, me and Nico, but in order to have that race we had to have a second-and-a half difference in tyres, between the soft tyre and the medium. That's a big difference, but it's the way we can get close enough. On the same tyre, we would have stayed two seconds behind probably - and it would have been all race.
"That shows that there is something fundamentally potentially wrong [with F1] and somehow we have to get around that in order to make it like that race, because it was one of the most exciting ones I've had in F1, if not the most exciting one.
"I want that every weekend - someone else might win, but I'll have had that race at least. It's the most satisfying feeling coming from the back or battling through. The last race [in Australia] felt good because I had to come back through to second, which is definitely a better feeling than being on pole and winning."
the conversation - Add your comment
Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.