‘He can only bring technicians’ – Brutal Lewis Hamilton Ferrari verdict cast by ex-F1 team boss

Jamie Woodhouse
Lewis Hamilton in the Formula 1 paddock at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

Lewis Hamilton in the Formula 1 paddock.

Former Minardi F1 team boss Gian Carlo Minardi believes that Lewis Hamilton will be of little benefit to Ferrari other than for perhaps drawing important personnel to Maranello.

The bombshell was dropped ahead of the F1 2024 season that this would be Hamilton’s final year as a Mercedes driver before embarking on a new career chapter with Ferrari. There he will partner Charles Leclerc, with Carlos Sainz therefore on the lookout for a new home on the F1 grid from 2025.

‘Lewis Hamilton can only bring valuable technicians’

Hamilton made his commitment to this final Mercedes season clear, though his ambition to go out on a high has taken a major dent early in F1 2024.

With Red Bull and Ferrari having started the season as the top two teams, that has left Mercedes locked out of the podium picture, but more alarmingly for Hamilton, he is being soundly beaten by team-mate George Russell thus far.

Russell is 3-0 up against Hamilton in the qualifying battle, while Hamilton is yet to get the better of Russell in race trim in F1 2024, which has left some questioning Ferrari’s decision, that only heightened by Sainz’s dominant win last time out in Australia following a remarkable recovery after appendicitis surgery.

The star power and relationships that Hamilton possesses as a seven-time World Champion and statistically F1’s greatest driver of all time, may prompt some of F1’s top technicians to head for Ferrari in the opinion of Minardi, though he thinks that is about it for what Hamilton offers to the Scuderia.

“All my life I prefer young drivers,” Minardi said in an interview with Italian publication Corriere dello Sport. “The only thing Hamilton can do is bring in some valuable technicians.”

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Ferrari’s course is set though as Sainz now goes about determining his future, which could be very bright after he turned many of heads in the F1 paddock with that stellar Australian GP showing.

And Minardi expressed his belief that Sainz is a very underrated driver on the F1 scene, placing him among six who he sees as World Champion-worthy in a car also up to the task. Notably, Hamilton was not included in Minardi’s list.

“It is not fair that Sainz is not recognised as a natural talent as Leclerc because he has innate talents,” said Minardi.

“He has nothing to envy the best and is among the six drivers who can aspire to the World Championship with the right car, namely [Max] Verstappen, Leclerc, Sainz, [Lando] Norris, [Oscar] Piastri and Russell.”

Hamilton failed to finish the Australian Grand Prix due to an engine failure, the seven-time World Champion sat on a tally of just eight points after three rounds.

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