Lewis Hamilton Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team

F1: Without best car Hamilton will look to change teams says Hakkinen

1998 and 1999 F1 champion Mika Hakkinen predicts that Lewis Hamilton will start looking at leaving Mercedes for a team with a faster car.

While reliability issues are plaguing their Red Bull rivals, Mercedes’ problem is simply speed. They have spent so many years as the team with the quickest cars on the grid, but the W13 has been a long way off the pace of the Ferraris.

With the new budget cap preventing Mercedes from simply throwing cash at engineering projects in a bid to fix the problem quickly, the team’s battle to get closer to the leading Ferraris is an uphill one. In the view of Hakkinen, this could encourage Hamilton to look elsewhere as he enters the twilight of his career.

“The last race in Australia was a tough spot for Lewis, really tough,” the two-time world champion told Unibet. “The team naturally wants the drivers to finish the race. They got the result – not the result they hope for, but still good points for the team. But I’m sure Lewis is still annoyed by the situation.

“It’s hard to be beaten by George. I’m afraid this will be a really difficult season for Lewis. George comes from a team with little to no success – he had some good qualifying results but not in the races. All these achievements with Mercedes are new to him, everything feels super good. For Lewis, this is a disaster and, with George being ahead, it’s even worse.”

“I wonder how Lewis behaves in the team meetings. I bet he’s sulking – I can imagine it! Lots of complaining and whining.

“This starts the natural thought process of drivers, ‘Should I go somewhere else?’ It’s a fact. He’s been at Mercedes for years and won multiple championships. Now that things are not going well, he’ll start thinking of switching teams.”


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