Hamilton would welcome Ricciardo at Mercedes


Lewis Hamilton has said it would be a "privilege" to have Daniel Ricciardo as a team-mate and believes he is a "fantastic driver".

Ricciardo is out of contract at Red Bull at the end of next season and is currently keeping his options open with a move to Ferrari or Mercedes potentially on the table given that Kimi Raikkonen and Valtteri Bottas are both set to be ge free agents at the same time.

Hamilton was asked whether he would welcome Ricciardo as a team-mate and replied by lavishing praise on the Aussie.

"Daniel is a fantastic driver and it would be a privilege to race against him," Hamilton told Autosport.

"He's a great character. He always brings a lot of positivity for his team. I think it's interesting. I think it's cool. I take it as a compliment when people say that.

"I don't truly necessarily believe that people want to be up alongside me, because that is not always necessarily the best thing for an individual.

"But in some cases, it could be a really good thing because it can help you grow.

"You look at Daniel, he's got a great driver in his teammate. And to be honest, he's got to really work to outperform him.

"You've always got to beat the person you're with first before you can look to compete against someone else and beat them.

Hamilton went further by saying he would go up against "a lot" of drivers as long as they maintain a positive harmony within the team.

"There are a lot of great drivers here who I would be happy to race against," Hamilton added.

"I don't mind who I race against, anyone in the world, as long as somehow you're able to maintain positivity in the team and hopefully you're still fighting another team as well.”