Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton is on the cusp of winning his 5th World Championship. He did receive stiff competition from Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel in the early part of the season. However, once the second half began, the challenge flickered out.
The media and the critics were quick to pounce on Ferrari and Vettel’s shortcomings. But, Hamilton was quick to leap to his rival’s defence. In an Instagram post, the World Champion elect wrote, “I feel the media need to show a little more respect for Sebastian. You simply cannot imagine how hard it is to do what we do at our level, for any athlete at the top of their game that is. It is to be expected that being humans we will make mistakes but it is how we get through them that counts.”
Earlier this week, Hamilton admitted that he could not comprehend Vettel’s sudden slump in form. He said,
“Up until the mid-part of the season they were very strong.
“Then they got to Monza and after that they were still quite strong at Monza and Singapore, then Singapore was really when things started to tail off.
“I definitely hadn’t anticipated that they would tail off as they have. The performances have not been coming as strong as they were before.
“I don’t really have an answer for that, it’s not something I’ve really focused on – I’m sure Sebastian could tell why.
“We’ve just been focussing on trying to do the best job we can and maximise the potential of our own ability.”
The Ferrari team and Vettel have been committing numerous errors which handed Mercedes the advantage. From crashing out of the lead in Germany to colliding with Lewis Hamilton in Monza and now, a collision with Max Verstappen in Suzuka. Even Ferrari’s strategies have been falling apart at the seams. They had so many misfortunes that one has to wonder what they did to feel the wrath of Murphy.