Lewis Hamilton has renewed his contract at Mercedes, but his long-term future in the sport is still uncertain.
The British driver signed a one-year extension at Mercedes and there is plenty of speculation that the eighth title win, if it does come, will spell the end of his stint in the sport.
Hamilton has made no secret of his various interests in the past, especially with regards to the entertainment industry.
However, if Hamilton does decide that he wants to stay in the sport beyond 2021, it will be at Mercedes, according to F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali.
Domenicali was asked whether it would at all be possible for Ferrari to sign him. He said that the team has already invested a lot in Leclerc and that could hamper his development.
“No, I don’t think so. They have invested in Charles and now Carlos. Lewis will end his career at Mercedes.
“I haven’t asked Lewis how long he will go on. He knows I want him to go on and on. He is incredible, at the top of his profession,” he said.
Mercedes is reportedly looking to get Hamilton to commit to another deal that will see him stay at the team till 2022. They want to do it fast with the view of not repeating their mistake of the previous season.
With Mercedes being the dominant force in F1 for such a long time now, it would not be logical for Hamilton to force a switch.
At this stage in his career, it would make far more sense to increase his overall win tally and championship count as much as he can. Thus, the incentive to switch teams is missing, unless it is financially very lucrative.
Having already surpassed a number of records set by Michael Schumacher, Hamilton will know an eighth world championship will truly establish his credentials as the greatest driver (statistically speaking) that the sport has ever seen.
It will not be as straightforward as it has been in recent years, if Mercedes’ pre-season testing woes are to be given any weightage.
The team itself as confessed to issues with its power unit and with other teams closing the gap through updates and new power suppliers, Hamilton will need to be at his best to do justice to his ‘favourite’ tag.