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Is the bad blood a thing of the past?

Lewis Hamilton & Felipe Massa

Greater Noida: Animosity between McLaren Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton and Felipe Massa of Ferrari appears to be a thing of the past.

At least on the evidence of what one saw at the Buddh International Circuit (BIC) on Friday evening.

Around 6.15 pm, after the drivers’ meeting chaired by race director Charlie Whiting, Hamilton was about to cross Massa on the way to his Team Building. Instead of walking by, he stopped, smiled and patted the Brazilian’s shoulders.

Massa, too, smiled and seemed to wish the Englishman.

Later, asked by The Telegraph if he and Hamilton were now friends, Massa replied with a perfectly straight face: “Always, always...”

That wasn’t so last year, when the two had a nasty exchange after the Singapore GP. Not long afterwards, their cars collided at the BIC during the inaugural Indian GP.

Hamilton didn’t interact with the media after that collision, but Massa took more than pot shots at him during his session with journalists.

It then appeared as if the two would need no provocation to actually go for each other’s jugular. Today, thankfully, that’s not about to happen.

A year on both, perhaps, are more mature.