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Prost: Hamilton, Mercedes success proves number one and two is needed

Prost: Hamilton, Mercedes success proves number one and two is needed

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Prost: Hamilton, Mercedes success proves number one and two is needed

Prost: Hamilton, Mercedes success proves number one and two is needed

Alain Prost believes it is vital for Formula 1's top teams to clearly define a lead driver and a 'number two' as team-mate.

Prost arguably formed one half of the most competitive driver line-up in the history of F1 when teamed with Ayrton Senna at McLaren, the pair's tumultuous time together culminating at the 1989 Japanese GP when a collision decided a championship fight between them in Prost's favour.

The Frenchman's comments come at an interesting time, with great scrutiny being placed on Ferrari and the battle for supremacy between Sebastian Vettel and Charles Leclerc.

Tensions have simmered between Leclerc and Vettel through much of the season, but bubbled over in Brazil as their wheels touched and caused significant damage, forcing both to retire.

It left Ferrari stewing over a first double DNF since the Singapore GP in 2017, but the team have said that clear-the-air talks have been held between Ferrari boss Mattia Binotto and the drivers.

Prost pointed out the success that Mercedes have had, with Lewis Hamilton seen – externally at least – as the team leader over Valtteri Bottas, as proof that clearly defined team structures are required in F1.

"If you look at drivers like Michael [Schumacher], Ayrton, even Sebastian and Max [Verstappen], you see all the more that a number one and two is needed," Prost told Motorsport.com.

"That is difficult, because it is not what everyone wants. But if you perform as a team at the highest level, that can make a lot of difference.

"Lewis and Valtteri can deal with that situation. Valtteri is not far away, because he is very fast, but Lewis is getting stronger all the time."

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