Lewis Hamilton at Mercedes could be replaced by fellow Briton Lando Norris, according to Karun Chandhok. A Sky Sports F1 host has revealed that Norris could be Mercedes’ “first choice” and could take Hamilton’s seat once the seven-time champion retires from Formula 1.
Hamilton’s Formula 1 future remains under scrutiny after contract extensions so far. As it stands, the Hamilton deal will expire at the end of 2023 which means the silver shares may be looking for a replacement earlier than planned.
Speaking to Autosport, Chandhok said: “The truth is I can’t see him going to Red Bull to be number two for Max, the Ferrari drivers are locked out. So his options are to go to Mercedes when Lewis Hamilton stops because of George.” [Russell] do not go anywhere.
“He can stay at McLaren I think until that basically happens. I think McLaren can hold on to him safely until that happens. But, let’s say we get to the end of this year and all of a sudden Lewis decides ‘I’ve had enough, I’m gone’.”
Read more: Russell makes first point for Mercedes driver amid Hamilton battle
He also celebrated Norris’ achievement after he outlasted him at the 2021 Russian Grand Prix after a late rain shower denied the McLaren star a first win. Meanwhile, details of Hamilton’s contract negotiations have been few and far between in a huge blow for the 38-year-old.
Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff suggested terms be agreed over the winter break, which did not materialize. Hamilton recently suggested that talks had not even begun, prompting fears that negotiations could have stalled.
But Wolf stressed that “there is no fixed deadline” as he doubled down on his confidence in getting an agreement. “Well,” he said, “the list of jobs is quite long in what needs to be done. But Lewis’ contract is certainly one of the topics we’ll be dealing with over the winter. But there’s no set deadline.”
“Lewis is part of the team and the team is part of Lewis. There is no reason not to continue.”
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