British Formula One driver Lewis Hamilton has indicated to the press that he may no longer be willing to take part in his media obligations after walking out of a post qualifying driver's press conference for the Japanese Grand Prix at Suzuka.
Hamilton qualified on the front row for the Grand Prix, but was unable to claim pole position as he was unable to beat the time set by his teammate Nico Rosberg. He lost out on pole position by just thirteen thousands of a second.
Hamilton made this rash statement as a result of receiving criticism in the press this week for casually uploading videos to his Snapchat account, while sitting in the pre-qualifying press conference on Thursday. A move which the journalists present felt was disrespectful.
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It could be said, however, that the outburst may have been more to do with the fact that he was frustrated at being unable to beat his teammate and title rival to pole position.
There is said to be tensions building between the two Mercedes drivers, and fuel was added to that fire following the Singapore Grand Prix when Red Bull Racing's Daniel Ricciardo stated in an interview that he sensed an awkwardness between them before they went out onto the podium to receive their trophies.
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Again, Singapore was another case of Hamilton falling short to Rosberg, who won the Grand Prix with Hamilton finishing third.
The win in Singapore saw Rosberg extend his lead over Hamilton in the Driver's Championship to 23 points.
Whether or not the pressure is getting to Hamilton from a championship perspective, or he is just genuine sick and tired of sports journalists, his outburst during Saturday's press conference sounded pretty stern.
This is what he had to say on the matter: "The smiles on your faces will probably be no longer, I am not actually here to answer your questions I have decided.
"With the utmost respect there are many of you here that are super-supportive of me, and those of you hopefully know I know who they are. There are others, unfortunately that often take advantage of certain things."
He continued: "The other day was a super light-hearted thing, and if I was disrespectful to any of you guys, or if you felt that I was disrespectful, it was honestly not the intention, it was just a little bit of fun.
"But what was more disrespectful was what was then written worldwide. Unfortunately, there are some people here, that it is not them that have done it, and unfortunately the decision I will take unfortunately affects those who have been super supportive. That's what I am saying with the utmost respect.
"I don't really plan on sitting here many more times for these kind of things, so my apologies and I hope you guys enjoy the rest of your weekend."
After unloading on all those present for almost a minute and a half, Hamilton then got up and left having answered not one single question.
It is not clear as to whether or not Hamilton will face any disciplinary actions from Team Mercedes at this time.
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