“Without Warning” – Nico Rosberg Chides Toto Wolff for 2016 Lewis Hamilton Mechanics Swap

Published 10/22/2021, 3:25 PM EDT
STUTTGART, GERMANY – NOVEMBER 29: Mercedes GP Formula One drivers Nico Rosberg (L) of Germany and Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain pose during a press conference with Toto Wolff, the Mercedes GP Executive Director, during the annual Mercedes Benz Stars & Cars event at the Mercedes Benz Museum on November 29, 2014 in Stuttgart, Germany. (Photo by Alex Grimm/Bongarts/Getty Images)


Nico Rosberg is still the last driver to beat Lewis Hamilton in a world championship battle. He won the world title in 2016 by narrowly beating his then-teammate Hamilton at Mercedes. But Rosberg stated he had to sacrifice a lot of things to win the world title.

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He mentioned he got himself a physiologist before the season. He lost paint from his helmet to reduce weight. But interestingly, he stated that the biggest change in the 2016 season was he had Lewis’s mechanics on his side of the garage.

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There was such a division between the two sides of the garage: Nico Rosberg

As reported by Formula Passion, Team Principal Toto Wolff had changed the mechanics for both sides of the garage before the start of the season. He had done so without informing Rosberg, which left him angry.

“There was such a division between the two sides of the garage that also the mechanics they had become adversaries, and the engineers lived in this climate,” said Nico.

SHANGHAI, CHINA – APRIL 10: Nico Rosberg of Germany and Mercedes GP speaks with Mercedes GP Executive Director Toto Wolff during practice for the Formula One Grand Prix of China at Shanghai International Circuit on April 10, 2015, in Shanghai, China. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

“Without warning, and without asking us, Toto transferred my entire team of mechanics to Lewis’s car, and all of his crews went to my car for the rest of the season. All of this happened just before the first race, and it was crazy. 

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My mechanics, whom I totally trust and who are also my friends, were transferred to Lewis’s car, and I had enemies working on my car.” explained Rosberg.

The decision to switch the engineers did not sit well with Lewis either. He mentioned that the decision affects the driver psychologically.

“Mechanics don’t have an effect on setup. The biggest effect it can have really on the driver is psychologically, but that is not something I want to go into. If something changes when it doesn’t really need to be changed, it can have all sorts of effects.” said Lewis.

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It would be interesting to know the real reason from Wolff why he rotated the mechanics in 2016.

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Devang Chauhan

580 articles

Devang Chauhan is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. Having completed his graduation in Journalism and Mass Communication, he has a keen eye for writing engaging and detailed articles on F1. Previously a writer for Sports Social's 'Chase Your Sport' Magazine, Devang has been an ardent follower of the sport for over a decade and has attended two editions of the Indian Grand Prix.

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