Lewis Hamilton looks set to sign a contract extension with Mercedes beyond his current deal.
Max Verstappen has urged Lewis Hamilton to stay in F1 for “as long as he wants to race” with his bitter rival set to discuss a contract extension with Mercedes. The Red Bull star said Hamilton has to “do what he feels is right” as the Brit weighs up a new deal.
Max Verstappen seems to call on Hamilton to remain in the sport, suggesting he could be competitive again in the “coming years”. The Dutchman predicted teams will “get a bit closer” to each other which could make the on-track battles more exciting,
Max Verstappen said: “He has to do what he feels is right and as long as he wants to race, he should do it. From our side, we have had already great battles. I’m sure that in the coming years, all of the teams will get a bit closer anyway so it will be interesting to see who is up there to fight.”
Lewis Hamilton’s current contract expires at the end of the 2023 season but he has hinted on several occasions that he could extend it.
He has previously warned he did not want to be in F1 past the age of 40 but appears to have made a U-turn after Mercedes’ struggles. The Silver Arrows have been unable to compete with Red Bull for the title this season after getting their new concept wrong.
It means Hamilton has been unable to challenge for his eighth title a year on from losing the historic crown in controversial fashion. At the United States Grand Prix, Hamilton revealed: “We are going to do another deal
“We’re going to sit down and we’re going to discuss it in these next couple of months, I would say. My goal is to continue to be with Mercedes. I’ve been with Mercedes since I was 13 and they really are my family.”
Mercedes boss Toto Wolff has previously confirmed a new contract for Hamilton “is going to happen”. The Austrian has claimed Hamilton could be in the sport for at least another five years which will take him up to his mid-40s.
Wolff confirmed the plan was to start negotiations at the end of the season. He explained: “We haven’t started having talks. We want to definitely finish the season and then find some quiet time over the winter like we have done last time around, that literally started in the winter holidays and lasted over two months. We haven’t done that.”