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Hamilton Seeks F1 Focus Beyond Paddock Drama

Hamilton: It Wouldn’t Make Sense for Verstappen to Join Mercedes F1

06/03/2024

“No one yet knows what the F1 cars of 2026 will look like,” says Lewis Hamilton.

Hamilton believes it would “make no sense” for Max Verstappen to move from the reigning champion team, Red Bull, to Mercedes F1 for 2025.

Hamilton has opted to end his long-time association with Mercedes to embark on a new chapter of his career with Ferrari from the beginning of the upcoming season.

Numerous names have been suggested to replace him, but recent developments off the track have even seen Verstappen’s name added to the possibilities that could be available to Toto Wolff.

Red Bull has been the subject of apparent power struggles in recent weeks following the conclusion of an investigation into allegations against Christian Horner. Although the Briton has been cleared of any alleged inappropriate behavior towards a colleague, Verstappen’s father, Jos, suggested that Horner’s position was untenable.

Jos was photographed in conversation with Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff in the Bahrain Grand Prix paddock, and the two men reportedly dined together at the Four Seasons Hotel in Manama, fueling speculation that Max could consider a change next season if the situation at Red Bull is not resolved.

What does Hamilton think about Mercedes F1 possibly targeting his former championship rival?

“I wouldn’t say I’m surprised. Because he’s an excellent driver, and we talked about it at the time [Abu Dhabi, 2021]. I think Max did what he had to do at that time, there was nothing against him, it was the sport that let us down.”

“It wasn’t his fault. If I were in his place, I would have done exactly the same, so there’s no problem. If you’re running a team, you want to have the best driver, you want, as a team, the driver who attracts attention, brings in sponsors, and he’s one of those, so I understand it.”

“It wouldn’t make any sense for him, but it will be interesting to see.”

It probably wouldn’t make sense due to the form displayed by the two teams currently, with Mercedes having won only one race in the past two seasons. But Mercedes F1 could reclaim the top spots in 2026, and Verstappen could pull off the same move as Hamilton did in 2013 by leaving McLaren.

“That’s an interesting parallel,” Hamilton remarks, “but no one knows yet what the F1 cars of 2026 will look like. So, at this point, it remains a very bold gamble.”

Hamilton Seeks F1 Focus Beyond Paddock Drama

Amid current F1 controversies, Lewis Hamilton calls for a return to the sport’s essence, prioritizing fans over politics.

Lewis Hamilton hopes that F1 will quickly move past the current controversies shaking the paddock, involving Red Bull and the FIA, and return the focus to the sport itself.

The Mercedes F1 driver is primarily concerned about the fans who have little interest in politics.

“I know F1 loves its dramas, it’s called the Piranha Club for good reason,” he said tonight in Jeddah.

“But fans need to trust us, they need to be able to trust the sport. I’ve become accustomed to all these controversies over the years, I’m not really sure what to say.”

“Some love it, but that’s not the part of the sport I enjoy. However, I suppose there are interesting aspects to these matters. It’s certainly an interesting time, but it must come to an end at some point.”

Regarding Christian Horner, Hamilton draws a parallel to his own experiences at McLaren.

“From my experience, I’ve obviously been through something similar during my time at McLaren, where our leader was questioned and going through a tough period. And it affected everyone.”

“I somewhat remember when we were about to lose Ron (Dennis), for example, the issues Ron was facing and the measures we had to take, it impacted us all.”

“A leader is crucial because they set the tone, ensuring the team adheres to the sport’s core values and integrity. And even though there are many others further down who are just as important, that leader is key to having a direction, knowing what you’re working for.”

“What I love about this sport is the team element, the competition, everyone working to be the best possible.”

“It’s everyone within a team pulling in the same direction, chasing something that’s almost unattainable – perfection, innovation, and winning the world championship. It’s such an incredible thing.”

“So let’s have the battles, but on the track. That’s what you want to see more of in our sport.”

“We’ve had Schumacher’s domination, you’ve had my era of domination, it happens all the time. And I think we can’t take anything away from Red Bull. They’ve done such an incredible job.”

“I mean, everything they’ve done as a team is really awesome. And they’ve really set the bar high, so we’re all striving to reach it.”

“It would be great if we had a closer battle. That’s what we’re working on. And then people will focus again on the sport, on the track.”

Hamilton Seeks F1 Focus Beyond Paddock Drama. Hamilton Seeks F1 Focus Beyond Paddock Drama

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