Amidst reports about Lewis Hamilton being late for meetings and various television pundits suggesting he has 'mentally checked out' of McLaren already, I couldn't help noticing his absence from last weeks episode of 'Tooned'.
'Tooned', a computer animated cartoon with voice overs from Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button, is McLaren's successful attempt at increasing levels of audience engagement in the team.
Episode 8 features Nick de Vries who is part of the McLaren Young Driver programme, the same development programme to which Lewis was signed at the age of 13. Is there a point being made there? Professor M, played by Alexander Armstrong, is showing Nick pictures of great McLaren World Champions: Alain Prost, Ayrton Senna and Jenson Button. Lewis Hamilton, 2008 World Champion for McLaren, seems to have been deleted not only from the cartoon but also from their history. To add insult to injury, Jenson has been included when his Championship was won with Brawn.
Is Lewis' omission from the latest episode of Tooned just a timely coincidence or is it a case of McLaren 'mentally checking out' of their relationship with him?
It seems there are too many indicators towards an ever souring relationship between the team and Lewis for it to be a coincidence. With his various misdemeanours towards the team and his team mate on Twitter, who could blame them for tooning out?