Mercedes is keen not to ‘fall into trap,’ so Lewis Hamilton reveals contract talks are begun.
Lewis Hamilton has stated that he and Mercedes are in the midst of contract negotiations.
Lewis Hamilton has acknowledged that he is in contract talks with Mercedes about his future in Formula One, as the Briton aims for a record-equaling eighth world title this season.
Hamilton set a timeline for discussions earlier this year, saying that it would be “logical” to “start conversations” about a new contract with Mercedes before the summer break.
Mercedes maintained the delays were perfect, with a chaotic conclusion to the F1 season – in which both Hamilton and team principal Toto Wolff contracted COVID-19 – but contract talks were long at the end of last season and continued into the start of 2021.
This year, though, Wolff has sworn not to let contract negotiations with Hamilton drag on, as delays in the past have resulted in the Brit losing his job.
“We are trying to get things done considerably faster than we did last time; we don’t want to fall into the same trap,” Hamilton said to F1.com.
“And it’s very relaxed as well – we always said we didn’t want to do it in the middle of the season because it would be too distracting – but we’ve done it in such a way that it’s light-hearted.
“It’s not intense, it’s not causing any problems, and Toto [Wolff, Team Principal] is communicating well as usual. So I’m hoping for a quick response.”
Hamilton also stated ahead of the Styrian Grand Prix that he didn’t think a team swap was necessary.
Many have speculated about Hamilton’s contract and who might be his teammate next season, with many speculating that Valtteri Bottas’ time at Mercedes is up, and that George Russell will take his place.
Russell impressed while filling in for Hamilton, who was recovering from COVID-19, during the penultimate race of the 2020 season, adding fuel to the fire.
“We have initiated negotiations, and there isn’t much to tell – just that we have had discussions and things are looking up, so…,” Hamilton added. Yes, Valtteri is now my teammate, and while we’ve both had our ups and downs in our careers, he’s a terrific teammate, and I don’t think that needs to change.”
Tom Clarkson pressed him for “Brinkwire Summary News” during the FIA’s F1 news conference on Thursday.