Lewis Hamilton explains what would make him quit Mercedes and suggests type of replacement

Lewis Hamilton explains what would make him quit Mercedes and suggests type of replacement

Lewis Hamilton has declared he will only ever leave Mercedes if he has nothing left to give as he talked up the prospect of finishing his F1 career with the Silver Arrows. The seven-time world champion is facing another uphill battle to dethrone Red Bull this season after Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez kicked off the new season in style with one win each in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia respectively.

Hamilton is already 22 points behind leader Verstappen and with Red Bull seemingly stronger than ever, the Brit has been encouraged to jump ship and ditch Mercedes to maximise his chances of winning more titles.

Thankfully for Toto Wolff, Hamilton has shown commitment to the cause as he played down suggestions we could potentially see him lining up for another team in the future – despite his expiring contract.

“I continue to feel very much at home in this family,” he said.

“I see myself with Mercedes until my last days, to be honest. I have amazing allies within the team, great relationships here.”

Hamilton later outlined his dedication to driving Mercedes forward before declaring he would like to see a youngster replace him when he feels the time is right.

He added: “Just as long as I can continue to help drive the team forward, really contribute… if there’s ever going to be a point where I feel like I’m unable to do that, it’s time for a youngster to come in.”

Prior to last season, Hamilton had won six successive titles with Mercedes, who enjoyed a golden era before Red Bull’s recent resurgence.

So far, the signs suggest both Hamilton and George Russell could have their work cut out trying to edge Verstappen or Perez to glory having both failed to record a podium finish in the opening two races of the season.

Meanwhile, Hamilton is cautiously optimistic Mercedes can make the correct changes to their car to get their season up and running – something they failed to achieve last season.

The Silver Arrows have already admitted that they made a mess of their concept car, something they are now desperate to rectify.

In the view of Hamilton, the current package is still a “little bit better” than last year’s W13 that left their star driver with headaches and back pain due to rattling.

“I’m aware that it can take a long time to catch the car ahead,” Hamilton added. “You look at the Red Bulls, it’s just going to continue to evolve.”

Hamilton is out of contract at the end of the year but the 38-year-old is expected to extend his stay with Mercedes, providing he wishes to continue racing.

During a cryptic Instagram post which included a video of him running, Hamilton recently admitted: “Some days I feel like stopping. When I start to feel this way I dig deep and remember I’m on a mission.

“Whether you realise it or not, you’re on a mission too. We’re all chasing something.”

Hamilton will be looking to get his season up and running this weekend when he races in Australia at the Albert Park Grand Prix Circuit.

Published at Thu, 30 Mar 2023 10:17:00 +0000