Watson thinks Hamilton should stop ‘pantomime dame’ act

Sam Cooper
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, looks disappointed. Azerbaijan, June 2022.

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, with a look of disappointment in Baku. Azerbaijan, June 2022.

Lewis Hamilton has been told to stop his “pantomime dame” act by former F1 driver John Watson following the seven-time World Champion’s complaints in regards to porpoising.

Hamilton was seen in visible pain as he exited his Mercedes car following the Azerbaijan Grand Prix. With the W13 more susceptible to bouncing than seemingly any other car on the track and the long straight in Baku, it was no surprise to see the 37-year-old Hamilton grab his back after the race was over.

Hamilton himself said that a mixture of praying, biting his teeth down and adrenaline was the only thing that got him through the race but he is not the only driver to have complaints.

Pierre Gasly recently said he hoped the FIA would step in to ensure the drivers do not end up “with a cane by 30” while Daniel Ricciardo said he felt “rattled” after Sunday’s race.

Hamilton has not been receiving support from every corner though with 1981 British Grand Prix winner Watson saying he needed to stop acting like a “pantomime dame” and “spend more time in the gym.”

“Lewis needs to be careful not to act like a pantomime dame,” the 76-year-old told the Daily Mail. “It is a very difficult car to drive but at 37 the bones are not as forgiving of an uncomfortable ride.

“This is a whole new world to Lewis. He has had seven or so years when Mercedes have been dominant and it’s perhaps like a seven-year itch. George looked pretty fresh afterwards and finished third to Lewis’s fourth.


Torquing Point: Another 'little victory’ for Mercedes

Mercedes had a 'little victory' in taking P3 and P4 in Baku, despite the pain Lewis Hamilton suffered.

“Lewis maybe needs to recalibrate and spend less time in the air and more in the gym.”

Another ex-driver has also had his say on Hamilton’s woes in the form of Ralf Schumacher. The brother of Michael and uncle of Mick wondered if Hamilton’s race posture may explain as to why he is feeling the negative effects more than most.

“As for bouncing, you can have those issues, but Russell was in the same car and George looked fresh to me after the race,” Schumacher wrote in his column for Sky Germany.

“Lewis should first see [Russell] is faster than [him]. I’m sorry for Lewis that he has a backache but other teams are tackling the problem as well.

“I don’t know if Lewis sits more upright in the car and therefore feels the blows to his back more. If he were sitting more upright, the load on his lumbar spine would be much higher and would explain his pain.”