Lewis Hamilton ‘smart’ to snub Ferrari even if they ‘double’ Mercedes salary

Henry Valantine
Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton at the Hungarian Grand Prix. Budapest, July 2023.

Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton at the Hungarian Grand Prix. Budapest, July 2023.

Lewis Hamilton would be “smart” to avoid a move to Ferrari, claims a report from Germany, as the Scuderia are not ahead of Mercedes in the pecking order and the pressure there is even higher than anywhere else on the grid.

Hamilton’s future with Mercedes has been one of the longest-running talking points of the season, with his contract expiring at the end of the year and no new deal yet signed to carry on for 2024.

While both driver and team have repeatedly said that a deal is mostly agreed, with team principal Toto Wolff saying it is now in a stage of “lawyers talking to lawyers” over the finer details, Hamilton is yet to put pen to paper.

Lewis Hamilton ‘smart’ to avoid Ferrari move, ‘every Mercedes problem would multiply’

Long-time Ferrari reporter Leo Turrini claimed last week that Ferrari president John Elkann had made a personal approach to the seven-time World Champion about driving for the Scuderia next season.

Despite admitting earlier this year that he has always wondered what it would be like to drive for Formula 1’s most storied team, Hamilton reportedly politely declined.

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And in doing so, a German reporter added that it is a shrewd move from the Mercedes driver, who in 2022 endured his first winless season in Formula 1.

“I also think Hamilton is quite smart,” wrote Michael Schmidt from German publication Auto Motor und Sport.

“He knows very well, that even if they pay him double in Maranello, things won’t go any better there. Ferrari is not ahead of Mercedes as a car.

“And every problem at Mercedes would multiply at Ferrari because it is even more in the spotlight.”

Mercedes currently lead Ferrari by 56 points in the Constructors’ Championship as Formula 1 sits in its summer break, with Hamilton 49 points clear of leading Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc in the Drivers’ standings.

A highlight of Hamilton’s season was taking pole position for the Hungarian Grand Prix – his first since Saudi Arabia in 2021 – with the Mercedes driver having stood on the podium four times so far in 2023.

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