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Thursday, September 6, 2012

Lewis Hamilton Telemetry Tweet Reveals little

Given that the ill-thought- out "telemetry tweet" showing data on Lewis's and Jenson's qualifying laps in Belgium took all of the headlines from what was a stunning pole position by Button I thought, in the cold light of day, and having regard to my betters who, by definition, all know better than me what it meant I'd refer all those interested to Gary Anderson on the BBC website (Former Tech Director of Jordan F1)and to Marc Priestly at F1Elvis (Former McLaren Team Mechanic and Senior Member of the Pitstop Crew).

as Tweeted by Lewis Hamilton 

Gary's position is that:

As for the tweet on Sunday morning, when he posted a picture of a telemetry sheet containing data from his and Button's qualifying laps, that is completely unacceptable.
I have had a good look at that sheet now and, while it does not reveal anything too significant, to open up that cupboard of information just shows how naive Hamilton is, how little he understands the big picture.
F1 is about being secret squirrel.

While Marc's is similar:

Whilst it may not give away the secrets to the team’s success, it will be of some limited interest to other teams as they compare the data to their own and observe the differences between the two aero set ups being run by Jenson and Lewis...The most disappointing aspect for the team and those working within, will be the principal that their valuable, secret information gained through the hard work of many, has been released to the world off the back of a somewhat childish tantrum from their driver. Be assured, had a mechanic or engineer done the same thing, the consequences for that person would be far more severe.

Both of these guys make the salient point that Lewis is 27 now and not a kid anymore.  Not only that but he's a world champion and one of the top driver's in one of the most successful teams.

Marc's statement about how costly the mistake would have been for any other employee only serves to highlight how important keeping all information regarding the performance of the car totally secret.

From the foregoing assessments we can assume that the collective rubbing of hands by the other teams in the paddock on foot of the tweet has cooled substantially but I'm sure that the McLaren team mechanics and engineers will still feel their ears burning every time they hear laughter as the pass the other pit garages.

Team morale will have suffered, perhaps particularly on Lewis's side of the garage, and the rumours linking him to Mercedes, along with the fact that his management had approached Ferrari and Red Bull, will not be helping.

Marc's piece where he tells of his time in the garage during Lewis's first year in F1 alongside Alonso is well worth reading as a guide to inter-team politics and gives a good sense of how the mechanics and engineers must feel operating in an environment of heightened tensions.