Lewis Hamilton is entitled to ‘say whatever he wants’ following his power unit failure whilst leading the Malaysian Grand Prix, Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff has said, after the Briton vented his frustrations to the media.
Hamilton called his reliability troubles this season “not acceptable”, adding “something’s not right” that only he has encountered trouble with his power unit, whilst team-mate Nico Rosberg and Mercedes customer team drivers have had very little in the way of problems.
Hamilton’s comments fuelled wild rumours of a conspiracy against him, whilst others slammed the three-time champion for his negative remarks.
Wolff however says Hamilton has every right to be disappointed and, when emotions are running high, such comments shouldn’t be taken with offense.
“Every remark, every answer is allowed after such a frustrating moment,” he is quoted as saying by Autosport.
“If you were in the lead of that race and you were just about to get back in that championship and your engine blows up, and then someone puts a microphone in front of your face… he is allowed to say whatever he wants.
“This is the emotion, and completely understandable. Each of us would express his frustration in different ways.”
Wolff revealed that after the race, when Hamilton had had a moment to calm down, he spoke to each of his engineers and even gave a speech to pick up the morale for the next race.
“He came back into the garage immediately, and he went to see Bradley [Lord], Niki [Lauda], myself and every single mechanic to say how he felt.
“He said some great things about the team and hopefully that is going to help us recover from Japan,” added Wolff.
“In such a moment, to come out and put yourself in front of the mechanics and engineers, and find words to pick them up for the next race, and encourage them, it was really great.”