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Mercedes won’t rush over Hamilton position

Mercedes will focus on savouring Nico Rosberg's F1 title win before turning attentions to 2017 and possible action over Lewis Hamilton.
Mercedes says it will take time to savour its 2016 Formula 1 World Championship wins before turning attention to next season and possible action against Lewis Hamilton following a contentious Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

Hamilton disobeyed several team orders during a tense finale around the Yas Marina Circuit as he attempted to back Nico Rosberg into the following pack as part of an effort to spur his own dwindling title hopes, raising speculation he could be in line for sanctions.

READ: Could Mercedes come down hard on defiant Hamilton?

For the time being though, Mercedes is focusing on celebrating Rosberg's drivers' title and its own third consecutive constructors' win.

"There's no time pressure," a spokesman told the BBC. "We'll let the whole thing settle and then figure out the way forward. For now, the focus is on savouring and celebrating the world championships."

Though Mercedes has denied its radio messages – which included an order from Paddy Lowe - to Hamilton were not to hamper his title chances but to prevent the fast approaching Sebastian Vettel from getting within range of challenging for the win, the subordination didn't leave team boss Toto Wolff impressed.

VIDEO: Nico Rosberg thanks his family in sweet home video Twitter post

With Wolff saying it is his duty to ensure Mercedes protects its values of defeating its rivals, regardless of whether it is the first race or the last race of the season, he admitted the team could rethink tactics over the winter.

“We saw a highly entertaining race with lots of controversy to talk about, lots to write about and isn't that at the end of the day what we want to achieve,” he said after the race. “The tricky bit here is what does that mean for the future of the team? And how can we race and not be over corporate and boring and allow them to race?”

With Rosberg heading to Kuala Lumpur to celebrate his title win with Mercedes' title sponsor Petronas, Hamilton has remained in Abu Dhabi to conduct Pirelli tyre testing ahead of 2017's change of regulations.

POINTS: The 2016 Drivers & Constructors World Championship standings!

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November 29, 2016 11:24 AM

This is such a media driven non story (which perhaps suits Mercedes advertising to keep it rolling). Lewis ran his race, Pit wall disagreed with his strategy, F1 broadcasts the comments to try to spice up 'the show'. Lewis wins race, Nico wins championship, Mercedes wins everything, F1 wins the show. Remember the outcry at Seb's radio message swearing about the F1 steward. F1 chose to broadcast the comment then made a big fuss about how unacceptable this language and behaviour was... It's all about the show folks, which is a shame as it detracts from the racing? MotoGP and WSBK have great man and machine duelling with non of the contrived radio message nonsense. I recommend it to all true race fans.


November 29, 2016 9:50 AM

Team orders are one thing. But the problem here is Mercedes over stepped the mark. You need to pick and choose when it is appropriate to issue an order and this time it most certainly wasn't. And all you lot saying "but, but he has to follow orders, he's an employee!" are missing the point. If you are asked by your employer to jump off a cliff, are you going to blindly do it? I suggest not. Hamilton was leading the race, it's his prerogative to dictate the pace. Toto et al made a wrong call and should be the ones apologizing here. They shouldn't have put Hamilton into this position. They could suggest a faster pace, of course, but demand it? Certainly not, especially under the circumstances.

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