F1 drivers asked if they were bored during press conference

(From top left to bottom right) Kevin Magnussen, Romain Grosjean, Valtteri Bottas, Nico Hulkenberg, Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel attend the driver's press conference in Austin on Thursday. (Photo: Glenn Dunbar/LAT Photographic)
Glenn Dunbar/WPPROD

Lewis Hamilton was bombarded with questions during Thursday’s press conference, while five other drivers sat around him barely uttering a word.

The press conference had been open to the floor for 10 minutes with only Hamilton and Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel having been asked questions.

For Hamilton, the questions had ranged from his season as a whole, to his sore foot, to his interactions with the fans.

Eventually, Will Buxton of NBC Sports asked the drivers who hadn’t answered questions – Romain Grosjean, Kevin Magnussen, Valtteri Bottas and Nico Hulkenberg – “what’s your current level of boredom and do you think this afternoon could be better spent?”

“I took a picture with a brand I’m not allowed to touch because I’m a Microsoft ambassador,” said Grosjean, reflecting on the highlight of his session. The Haas F1 driver had taken a photo after Hamilton had handed him his iPhone during the press conference.

“It’s not ideal when you’re at the back and we don’t have any questions,” admitted Grosjean. “But we know it, but it’s how it goes. Maybe there’s room for improvement.”

“Yeah, quiet today,” admitted Force India driver Nico Hulkenberg. “[Lewis] takes the main questions, easy job for me.”

“Easy,” agreed Williams driver Valtteri Bottas. “Tomorrow anyway is the day we’re all looking forward to. This day isn’t going to go any quicker.”

“Yeah, it could be better,” agreed Renault driver Kevin Magnussen. “But that’s how it is.”

The structure of Formula One’s press conferences had come into question recently. Hamilton had criticized them after messing around on his phone during a press conference ahead of the Japanese Grand Prix.