Lewis Hamilton’s future at Mercedes is yet to be resolved despite Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff previously claiming that the deal will go through in tthe winter.
While that has not happened, it is now believed that Hamilton wants to take a closer look at the upgraded W14 before he decides to commit his future at the Silver Arrows.
If he is left unconvinced by its championship-worthiness, he could fashion a move to a rival, according to speculation linking him with a position at Ferrari or even retirement from the sport altogether.
Bernie can’t see Lewis move to Ferrari
Former F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone doesn’t see this happening though, and believes the seven-time world champion will continue to ply his trade at Mercedes in an attempt to claim an elusive eighth world championship.
“I would be surprised that Ferrari would want to get rid of Leclerc to sign Lewis because they are very much in love with Leclerc,” Ecclestone said.
“Lewis has said that when he does decide to stop he would still want to be connected with Mercedes so it would surprise me if he wanted to leave.
“And if I was Lewis and I saw that Leclerc is happy to leave Ferrari, I would think there has to be a problem there.
“I also don’t know why Lewis would think he would be better off at Ferrari than where he is at the moment.
“He knows everything well and truly at Mercedes. They know him, and they have a lot of respect for him so he couldn’t be better looked after anywhere.”
Marko decodes true reason for Hamilton disgruntlement
Red Bull technical advisor Helmut Marko thinks that Hamilton has only created a chirp to get a better contract at Mercedes and his true intention has never been to leave the team.
Marko believes two things are currently getting annoying for Hamilton. Firstly, he is “no longer world champion and will struggle to become one again in the future” at either Mercedes or Ferrari.
Secondly, Hamilton is reportedly on a contract where he earns $20 million less than Max Verstappen, which is again difficult for the Stevenage-born driver to come to terms with.
“Lewis is anything but happy about the fact that he is no longer the best-earning driver in Formula 1,” Marko said.
“That is now Max Verstappen. At least he could change that with Ferrari’s help.”
On his own part, Hamilton has reaffirmed his commitment to continuing in F1 and that too at Mercedes.
“I thought about and watched the Ferrari drivers on the screens at the track and of course you wonder what it would be like to be in red,” Hamilton recently said.
“But then I go to my team, to Mercedes, and this is my home. I’m happy where I am. I haven’t signed a contract yet, but we are working on one.”