The gloves are off and the fight is on between Formula One title rivals Sebastian Vettel and Lewis Hamilton. Sunday’s explosive Azerbaijan Grand Prix more than made up for 2016’s dull race in Baku, bursting the budding "bromance" between the two and replacing it with something much more heavyweight. Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff said as much after a crazy afternoon that saw mutual respect and camaraderie tossed aside amid angry accusations. "Nobody wanted to see the schmoozing anyway, so now the gloves are off," the Austrian told Sky Sports television after Hamilton had dubbed the Ferrari driver a "disgrace" and suggested they sort things out "face to face". "The sport needs the rivalry. What we have seen today is the ingredient of a great championship," said Wolff. The most memorable seasons have been fuelled by controversy, passion and a fierce rivalry sometimes spilling into outright enmity. Baku, with the championship favourites colliding and a podium of drivers who could scarce...

BL Premium

This article is reserved for our subscribers.

A subscription helps you enjoy the best of our business content every day along with benefits such as exclusive Financial Times articles, ProfileData financial data, and digital access to the Sunday Times and Times Select.

Already subscribed? Simply sign in below.



Questions or problems? Email helpdesk@businesslive.co.za or call 0860 52 52 00. Got a subscription voucher? Redeem it now