Lewis Hamilton: Not the right time to sign new Mercedes deal

By Liam Blackburn 7 August 2020 48
Lewis Hamilton: Not the right time to sign new Mercedes deal

Lewis Hamilton insisted he will sign a new contract with Mercedes, but he does not feel it is right to agree terms on a lucrative deal in the current climate.

The six-time Formula One world champion's current term with Mercedes expires after the 2020 season and there had been speculation about him potentially joining Ferrari earlier this year.

However, with all the significant seats now filled for 2021, it is assumed Hamilton will remain with the team he has been with since 2013.

The Briton, who has won each of the past three races to establish a significant lead in the 2020 Formula One season already, expects his future is with the Silver Arrows.

Yet even after his team-mate Valtteri Bottas agreed a one-year extension on Thursday, Hamilton conceded he is willing to wait to discuss his terms due to the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic, with several F1 teams having furloughed staff earlier in the year.

"Ultimately, honestly, it just doesn't feel like the right time," he told reporters at Silverstone ahead of this weekend's 70th Anniversary Grand Prix – the fifth race of the calendar.

"When you think about so many people in the world that have lost their jobs, people that are unemployed, then to sit and negotiate a big contract – it just doesn't seem like the most important thing that I need to apply time to right this second.

"I'm not talking to anybody else and I'm looking forward to continue on, particularly as we've just started a new chapter as a team, in terms of how we educate ourselves, how we understand what we're going to do to help be more diverse moving forwards and more inclusive.

"I'm super excited for what it's possible to do with Mercedes-Benz and this time moving forward. At some stage it will get done but I'm not stressed."

While he is happy for his contract discussions to wait, Hamilton is also pleased to know Bottas will be sticking around at Mercedes.

"I think consistency is always a good thing for a team, and Valtteri has had such a positive influence on the team over these five years," he added.

"He's trustworthy and does an incredible job on the track and is a great team-mate to all the people within the team so I think it's a tribute to all the hard work he's done."

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Liam Blackburn

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