Many Lewis Hamilton fans, in the public and the media, are upset today.
A sizable segment actually feels the British driver was shortchanged by Mercedes who betray their preference for German driver Nico Rosberg.
First the Monaco debacle now Austria.
Hamilton was intentionally, in their view, kept out on old tires one lap too long, to allow Rosberg to keep his lead, a lead Nico had only gained because Mercedes switched Lewis' clutch to one supposedly not of his liking.
This would be funny of it were just random internet forum banter but when you get members of the media pushing the view it escalates to a new level.
as low an opinion of Rosberg and as he has a very high one of Hamilton, tweeted those "accusations" after the race.
Normally one might attribute Buxton's hyperbole to his having spent too much time chugging free Red Bulls in Dieter's hospitality suite and dismiss it but Mercedes did something different and quite new for F1:
Not only did Mercedes politely but firmly shut down Buxton's conspiracy theories, they also engaged with fans following the thread, responding courteously, with facts and figures when appropriate.
No, it wasn't a different clutch, it was the same one they used all year. No, Lewis did not have the gap because even if Nico had a mediocre in lap, he has a blistering out lap.
This is fantastic, more teams should take this approach and engage with commentators and fans, share and shed light.
Another way Mercedes is leading the F1 field.
Expand the tweets below to see the full conversations.
1. Safety Car on Lap 1 called an early end to side by side battle between the Mercedes drivers which was yet to be concluded.— The Buxton Blog (@thebuxtonblog) June 21, 2015
@thebuxtonblog True! We were looking forward to seeing how that one panned out!! :)— MERCEDES AMG F1 (@MercedesAMGF1) June 21, 2015
2. New clutch after the 4th race is not to Hamilton's liking. Rosberg has won 3 of the past 4 races, and HAM unhappy with all starts since.— The Buxton Blog (@thebuxtonblog) June 21, 2015
@thebuxtonblog Clutch (used throughout 2014) gives more predictable and consistent starts for both cars.— MERCEDES AMG F1 (@MercedesAMGF1) June 21, 2015
3. Team decision to leave HAM out an extra lap. ROS in lap was scrappy and slow. Gap would have been far closer had HAM pitted lap after ROS— The Buxton Blog (@thebuxtonblog) June 21, 2015
@thebuxtonblog Not correct. Lewis didn't have the gap at any point - especially after the searing out-lap from Nico.— MERCEDES AMG F1 (@MercedesAMGF1) June 21, 2015