Mercedes drivers have ‘respect’ – Hamilton

Hamilton and Bottas have respect
Hamilton and Bottas have respect

(GMM) Lewis Hamilton has weighed into the crumbling relations between Ferrari duo Sebastian Vettel and Charles Leclerc.

The Mercedes driver won at Sochi, where Vettel had refused to obey a team order to let his teammate Leclerc through.

Hamilton says he and teammate Valtteri Bottas have more respect than that.

"I mean we work together, so it's about having respect," he said.

"We talk about scenarios very openly. Valtteri has always been respectful in all those scenarios and I think it's vital that we both act accordingly, which we do."

After Sochi, Hamilton has moved himself into a position where he can mathematically clinch his sixth drivers' world championship next time out in Japan.

"I say this every season, but I try not to think too much about the championship. One race, one step at a time. We don't want to stumble," he said.

The 34-year-old also gave a clear indication that he would like to extend his stay in Formula 1 beyond his 2020 contract.

Hamilton said getting involved to help Liberty Media and the FIA to craft the 2021 rules has been "a huge step".

"I think it looks great, so I'm working as hard as I can to make sure I can stay around and get to drive those newer cars," said the Briton.

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