McLaren deny Hamilton-to-Mercedes report

F1 Fanatic round-up

Posted on

| Written by

In the round-up: McLaren deny a report claiming Lewis Hamilton will move to Mercedes in 2013.


Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

Lewis Hamilton ‘set for move to Mercedes from McLaren’ (BBC)

“A McLaren spokesman said: ‘We have been told by Lewis Hamilton’s management team that the story is untrue.'”

Alex Zanardi takes an emotional gold at Brands Hatch (The Telegraph)

“Just when you thought these Paralympic Games could not offer any more unfathomable comeback tales, here was one to top the lot, that of the star racing driver who lost his legs and almost his life after a horror crash in Germany before re-emerging 11 years later as a champion cyclist.”

Oro a Zanardi nella cronometro handbike (YouTube)

Force India thrilled with drivers (Autosport)

Force India deputy team principal Robert Fernley: “I think Nico [Hulkenberg] has done a super job, we never had any doubts about him, and with Paul [di Resta] they are just so equal. There is nothing between them and it is a thrill to have two wonderful drivers pushing the limits all the time.”

Jochen Rindt (F1 Speedwriter)

“When I got to the Parabolica, I went around slowly, searching for the marks where Jochen went off. I ran four laps and my last lap was the fastest I had ever done Monza, and the fastest I was to do that weekend. It will be said I was trying to hurt myself, that it was suicidal, but it wasn’t. It felt the same as any other lap.”

Monza: The magic of a name (ESPN)

“The circuit is within the Royal Park, not far from the centre of the town and now buried within the sprawling environment of Milan. Attempt to build it today in the same place and you would be laughed out of court. Saying that, and this being the home venue of Ferrari, there is a sneaking suspicion that the local government would be voted out of office if they refused.”


Comment of the day

@Enigma has a good question about Ma Qing Hua’s F1 practice debut tomorrow:

What will his FIA abbreviation be, since he’s only got two letters in his surname?

From the forum

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Baldry 888 and Charlie!

If you want a birthday shout-out tell us when yours is by emailling me, using Twitter or adding to the list here.

On this day in F1

Ayrton Senna lost victory in the Italian Grand Prix 25 years ago today. His active suspension Lotus-Honda 99T slithered wide at the Parabolica, handing victory to Nelson Piquet with seven laps to go.

Nigel Mansell finished a distant third, his Honda engine lacking its usual punch.

Here are highlights from the race:

Image © McLaren/Hoch Zwei

Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

Got a potential story, tip or enquiry? Find out more about RaceFans and contact us here.

134 comments on “McLaren deny Hamilton-to-Mercedes report”

  1. It’s interesting that McLaren went straight to Lewis’ management team to get a denial. It would seem as though it surprised them as much as the rest of us. If that was the case, I wouldn’t be suprised if McLaren started more actively seeking a replacement. Hamilton better sign for someone soon, or he could find himself in trouble.

    1. Thats what I thought. Their contract negociations must be far from coming along good if they actually have to ask his management if he signed with someone else AND feel the need to announce it publicly.
      On the other hand, what other team provides for Hamilton what McLaren does and what other driver delivers what Hamilton can for McLaren? It would be fun though to see him with Rosberg in Mercedes with Raikkonen back at McLaren to form the second oldest team on the grid and Ferrari being the oldest with Alonso and Schumacher (ok, the last one is really unrealistic :-P ).

      About Zanardi: I knew he was racing today and I was looking for a result sporadicly when suddenly I saw he won gold. I almost had a tear in my eye, he really deserves to win this (as do almost all of them, watching those athletes is inspiring and makes everyday problems seem very small)!

      As for the COTD: I suppose MQH is the way to go.

    2. he’ll sign for Mclaren, but Mclaren and Mercedes will merge, to a situation similar to last seasons, yet that’s not going to happen until 2014.

      1. don’t take my comment as scientology, one certainty is that Hamilton will join a top team, Mercedes isn’t a top team therefore he has 2 options Red Bull and Ferrari, could he switch with Vettel, that would bode nicely with Mercedes, or he could join alonso, he has nothing to fear he knows the drill, his hopes are to win championships and Mclaren has failed on him, as he certainty feels like he has almost always delivered.

        1. one certainty is that Hamilton will join a top team

          Given his recent run of behaviour, I doubt other top teams would be interested in him if he did some of the things he’s done lately. Ferrari, for instance would probably fire him on the spot if he Tweeted their telemetry.

          If Hamilton were to leave McLaren, I’d say his best best is somewhere like Sauber, Williams or Force India – stong teams that are only lacking the final push they need to live up to their potential, and who could probably afford to put up with his nonsense.

          could he switch with Vettel

          No, he couldn’t. Why would Red Bull give up on Vettel to get Hamilton?

          1. I don’t think the telemetry issue will have such a long life. People have short memory and top teams want fast drivers and Hamilton is fast. Fernando Alonso threw McLaren under the bus (rightly) denouncing spygate and still was hired by Ferrari.

          2. @jcost – If it were an isolated incident, I’d be inclined to agree with you. But it’s not. It’s just the latest episode in a series of bizarre events that lead me to question how much thought Hamilton puts into what he does before he actually does it.

          3. Behaviour … what utter rot. So he voiced his disapproval over a few things. You think that disqualifies him from any other team? Let’s start with Vettel who seems to whinge like crazy whenever he’s not in the lead these days. Moving swiftly onto Alonso … had you forgotten he tried to blackmail Ron Dennis with the spygate stuff while at McLaren? Lastly, Nelson Piquet who tried every dirty trick in the book to annoy Nigel Mansell and Frank Williams because he didn’t get what he wanted.

            Oddly enough, two of these drivers are still in top teams. The last one got competitive drives in IndyCar after leaving F1.

          4. So he voiced his disapproval over a few things. You think that disqualifies him from any other team?

            I’m not talking about “voicing disapproval”. I’m talking about the way he clearly doesn’t think about what he is doing before he does it. It obviously never occurred to him that uploading the telemetry read-outs to Twitter would put vital information about the car’s performance – information the team would have preferred to remain conffidential – in the public arena. One rival team engineer called it “gold dust”, because it offered considerably insight into how the McLaren performed. Hamilton may well have compromised the car simply because he didn’t think about what he was doing.

            That’s the kind of foolish behaviour I am talking about.

          5. @prisoner-monkeys But you keep isolating that one incident that has happened of late, what are these “series of bizarre events ” that you keep talking about?

          6. I’m also quite curious as to what other errors judgement he has made recently.

          7. @prisoner-monkeys before you start stating the obvious you could perhaps include in your judgment that drivers wear helmets to protect their heads, Vettel may want to join Mclaren already thinking it will become Mercedes main team. and when i said “one certainty is that Hamilton will join a top team” that team will probably be Mclaren, but who knows Hamilton is the fastest driver in the world, anyone would take a risk for him.

      2. Mclaren and merc will merge once again come 2014.. Ross brawn to replace whitmarsh ;)

        1. Ross Brawn will never take the train to Woking, he’s a Brackley boy through and through(yes, I know he was in Maranello for some time).

        2. Why on earth would McLaren agree to a merger? Mercedes are stuggling right now, and so would stand to gain everything from a McLaren-Mercedes merger. But McLaren are on top of their game at the moment, and would not gain anything from merging with Mercedes. So why would they agree to it?

          I think it’s far more likely that Mercedes will a) stay in the sport, or b) sell the team outright.

          1. sell the team outright

            If they do, do you think this could mean a return for the Brawn GP name?

          2. It depends on what level of involvement Brawn himself has. If Mercedes sell to someone else, then I wouldn’t expect them to adopt the Brawn name.

          3. @prisoner-monkeys I know this goes against what i’ve been hoping for, but if Mclaren loses Hamilton they will lose sponsorship, they are already struggling a bit with Vodafones departure, financially it could interest Mclaren to become partners with Mercedes, not like in the past i don’t think that that will happen again but like RedBull is partner of Renault, more sponsoring less technical.

    3. I think its inevitable that a team asks at the source if they hear any rumours about one of their drivers. I don’t see any reason why they wouldn’t ask, after all they have not yet been able to sign a new contract with Hamilton yet.

  2. You can’t believe anybody when it comes to driver employment negotiations, having said that I wonder if RBR suddenly signed Webber early in the season when they realised that McLaren might be looking for a less expensive team-mate to partner JB in 2013.

    1. Webber and Button would make a good team together. And I think it would fit well with Mclaren as well.

      1. I completely agree. They could perfect each other in level headedness, if anything.

    2. I think it was rather about RBR wanting to make sure Webber would not team up with Alonso next year @hohum

  3. Alex Zanardi the men who believe nothing is IMPOSSIBLE !!!!! this man is an example not only for the drivers but for all the people having any kind of problem,disability….& want to succeed
    seeing him winning an Olympic Gold Medal can just give me hope, he will also participate in another two competitions
    Forza Alex !!!!!

    1. Absolutely. This man is unstoppable. From last rites to the best in the world.
      Congratulations Alex Zanardi

    2. Yeah, I think at the very least, he is an inspiration to the world. Truly amazing feat.

    3. A sporting hero, and an inspiration. Great news that his willpower and determination helped him achieve this gold medal.
      And its heartwarming that many of the sports current drivers acknowledge this achievement.

  4. A fantastic COTD there! I only assume they’ll be using his initials when the time comes.

    1. MA seems obvious, sadly Michele Alboreto will not be back.

    2. RMB as in Renminbi :-)

      just kidding

    3. I reckon MAQ. Sort of like the RSC/MSC convention, but with the family name first, as is the Chinese way.

    4. MQH or QHM?

  5. It’s incredible how close the statistics are for Hulkenberg and di Resta at this stage of the season.

    Looking at their Form Guides (thanks Keith) they both have an average finishing position of 9.73, with a qualifying average of 11.5 for di Resta and 11.42 for Hulkenberg. Each has finished ahead of the other 5 times (with a DNF for di Resta at Britain). The Scot just has his nose in front on laps led, 312 to 308.

    Also very close are Ricciardo and Vergne (ingnoring qualifying, where Vergne is closing the gap of late).

    It’s fair to say these are the two teams with the most evenly matched driving pairs.

  6. Zanardi won! I’m going to cry.

    1. I proudly dropped some tears for this 45 years old hero.

  7. It’s so cool to see ex-F1 driver Zanardi won his gold medal at ex-F1 track, Brands Hatch! What a champion he is.

  8. MAQ or MAH?

  9. Let Hamilton go to Merc and get Kamui Kobayashi at McLaren!!
    We must all agree that he deserves a front runner team!

    1. Not really.

    2. JimmyTheIllustratedBlindSolidSilverBeachStackapopolis III
      6th September 2012, 13:49

      if hamilton leaves mclaren and we assume kimi isn’t in their sights i’d say kamui is the best choice faster and with a better temperament than di resta and the hulk. ferrari have a large say in what perez does so i don’t expect to see him at mclaren but i’d love to see him replace felipe.

  10. The Hamilton article seems a bit odd. If I read it correctly…

    -Schumacher is retiring
    -Hamilton’s people spoke to Merc
    Therefore, Hamilton is going to Merc.

    It’s not out of the question but extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. Seems more like a publicity move to me.

  11. McLarenFan1993
    6th September 2012, 6:20

    Monza braking Analysis using motec i2 pro

    Used in the analysis are various parameters.

    1) A map of the circuit with a small dot indicating the position of the car. (note the darker colour in the braking zones)

    2) Brake pedal position (notice how it reaches peak position often)

    3) Throttle position(green)

    4)Then there is a numeric bar gauge displaying longitudinal & lateral g-forces

    5) Then there is a red colour graph of brake-pedal position(in %) vs time(in sec) notice where it reaches its peak.

    6) Then there is a green colour graph of throttle pedal position (in%) vs time(in sec)

    7) One more graph depicts brake temperature vs time ( Notice that the brake temperatures easily exceeds 1000c, unlike spa)

    8)There are 3 gauges displaying the Gear,engine rpm & cornering speed.

    9) In addition to the above, included is a Scatter Plot of Brake temperature( in Celsius) Vs Engine RPM(in rpm)

    10) You can also see the variation of the brake temperature in the numeric bar gauge.

    1. Someone with the nickname McLarenFan1993 posting telemetry data on the internet.

      Is that you Lewis?

  12. I saw no urgency by McLaren to get him up to speed in Spa last week, and felt something was def. not going right.

    1. I think people are reading a little too much into the sitaution, myself. I think they’re reacting to the thing that has been said the most recently, and then reinterpreting everything that has gone before it to fit the comments.

    2. I saw no urgency by McLaren to get him up to speed in Spa last week

      Hamilton’s problems in Spa were well-documented – he and his engineers chose the wrong rear wing. Hamilton himself has said he was involved in the decision, so why are you trying to pin all the blame on his team?

      1. he and his engineers chose the wrong rear wing. Hamilton himself has said he was involved in the decision,

        @keithcollantine Sometimes your voice of reason can’t be heard through all the natterings of conspiracy theorists. Well said :)

      2. why are you trying to pin all the blame on his team?

        I think the insinuation is more that McLaren have given up on Hamilton and are only really putting in a token effort until Hamilton leaves, rather than blaming the team for his problems in Belgium.

        1. That said, I have seen some very dedicated Hamilton fans who still believe that nothing was wrong last year, and that all of Hamilton’s problems can be laid squarely at McLaren’s feet. Some of these people have even gone so far as to suggest that Hamilton should leave McLaren for someone like Mercedes or Lotus where he will thrive, thereby proving that it was all McLaren’s fault.

      3. Keith, i’ve had a thought,and would like your opinion. I’m wondering if Lewis leaves for AMG, what the effects would be for McLarens sponsors. i.e main title sponsor, if i’m right in thinking vodafone are leaving, surely lewis has more pulling power for sponsors than JB and this could be why McL don’t want news leaked that hes leaving although they (mcl) know hes leaving posssibly. I dont think anybodies comments have picked this up already? any thoughts?

        1. Losing a star driver can only be bad from a sponsorship point of view. Of course it depends who he’s going to be replaced with, but it’s not going to be a Vettel or an Alonso.

          It could present one opportunity for McLaren, however. At present they have two drivers of the same nationality and if that changes their potential appeal to sponsors could be broadened.

      4. Not really seeking to blame on anybody, but it is was clear that there was no ownership of the shortcomings LH/garage(his) had at Spa as if nobody cared. It later finally was outed by LH when he tweeted confidential data instead of taking ownership.

        McLaren group had already put the effort into making the wing for this race, and you had to be at a certain dark place to ignore such effort. I will follow the constructors championship closely as I believe Lotus to climb above McLaren.

        Something is making LH angry, and he is out to make the McLaren group angry as well.

        1. it is was clear that there was no ownership of the shortcomings LH/garage(his) had at Spa as if nobody cared. It later finally was outed by LH when he tweeted confidential data instead of taking ownership.

          Yes there was “ownership of the shortcomings”. Before the race, and before posting his telemetry on Twitter, Hamilton said he came to the decision with his engineers to use the wing:

          Hamilton says wing switch was join decision

  13. I think that what has NOT been said matters more in this case. Neither Mercedes, nor Hamilton’s management have denied the fact that the negotiations have been taking place. So I think that, even if Hamilton hasn’t signed a contract with Mercedes yet, his intention to leave McLaren is real. The move might not happen but I rather believe that it will. If a relationship is broken, then it’s not so easy to repair and the signs are that Hamilton and McLaren have fallen out of love with each other.

    1. We girls know a lot about broken relationships ;)

      1. @celeste Jaja :D Maybe McLaren should hire you as their family counselor :)

        1. @girts I will send them my resume… but I would probably show very little patience with Hamilton, and couldn`t stand Nicole… :/

  14. Alessandro “Alex” Zanardi may not be remembered as the best motor racing driver in the world, however, he will be remembered as one of the most inspiring men of the world.

  15. Seeing as the Hamilton to Mercedes story is based purely on Eddie Jordan’s suspicions, I’m not going to read too much in to it. Hamilton would be mad to leave Mclaren; at best he should look for a long-term (~5y) contract at another team that always produces front-running cars – Ferrari is the only one that springs to mind.

    1. @jh1806

      Hamilton would be mad to leave Mclaren

      Yes, he would be – but would McLaren be mad to let him go?

      I’m not so sure about that. For all his natural ability behind the wheel, we have seen Hamilton display some of the most erratic, questionable and downright bizarre behaviour from a driver that the sport has ever seen. Posting the telemetry on Twitter is just the tip of the iceberg – how about his infamous “don’t touch me, man!” episode in Singapore last year? Or his Bob Marley helmet in India, which was meant to represent “no woman, no cry” and his on-again, off-again relationship with Nicole Scherzinger?

      For the time being, McLaren have tolerated it, though one suspects that their patience must be wearing thin by now, and it’s not beyond the realm of possibility that the only reason why they haven’t let him go yet is that they feel any other driver is going to be a step down from him, but sooner or later, he is going to stop being an asset and start being a liability, and when that happens, McLaren will walk away.

      1. Agreed. I’ve never been a big Hamilton fan. While his ability is undoubted, his temperament has often left me wondering.

        And yet this year, I thought he’d finally turned a corner. It seemed that at 27 he
        had matured as a person and driver. He just seemed in a better place mentally.

        Until Spa that is. Honestly, his tweet of confidential team data, in some petulant attempt to show that it wasn’t his fault he was slower than his teammate, was one of the most astonishing brain snaps of any driver in years. Can you imagine any other driver on the current grid doing that?

        Button’s not so subtle rebuke said it all.

        So yes, if you’d asked me even a month ago if Hamilton and McLaren would ever part ways, I’d have said very unlikely. Now, not so sure, and as you say if they do separate it’s likely to be McLaren that makes the decision.

        While this may not be the final straw, you have to wonder how much longer the team will put up with his behaviour.

        1. Whatever the case, they have to make a decision soon. The last thing they want is a repeat of 2008, when they were caught out by Alonso’s late departure and forced to take an underwhelming driver in Heikki Kovalainen (who has since improved markedly). If they are considering dropping Hamilton, then they need to act before all the good second-tier drivers – like Perez and Kobayashi – are taken.

          1. @tdog @prisoner-monkeys What’s more surprising is that all this annoucements seem to be McLaren always saying or confirming they are still discussing with Hamilton. As we could expect them not to care and Hamilton saying he has not team yet. Or McLaren is avoiding Hamilton to join other team and putt pressure on him to join them under beter terms (not really in their interest)
            And I don’t think it would be such a big deal if they had to find a driver in a hurry, they won’t have the best but easily someone fitting for the job like Kovalainen, Di Resta … I don’t think Perez fit for McLaren

      2. Let’s try and refute a couple points shall we? “Don’t touch me man.” Where do I begin with this? Massa takes both of them out and then acts in an extremely inappropriate manner while Lewis is giving a (to that point) calm and considered interview. Neither driver comes off particularly well here, but Massa acting like a 14yr old school bully in search of a reaction is particularly disappointing.

        Bob Marley helmet? Is that the best you can do? Vettel changes his damn helmet every race and yet nobody says too much about that. What about Vettel’s frankly odd and superstitious habit of naming his cars? “Kate’s Dirty Sister” springs to mind. And yet a one off Bob Marley helmet is suddenly a cause for derision? Hrm.

        In a sport where ego’s do run rampant, money talks and there’s a lot of hard hours put in for sponsorship deals and car development then Lewis is hardly exhibiting the most bizarre behaviour that’s possible.

        One final point: if anyone had actually bothered to follow any of the drivers on twitter you’d have also found out that Lewis had to cut short his prep for the weekend to attend a seriously ill family member who has now passed on. If it’s suggested that it’s possible to act completely rationally after the death of a loved one, I’ve got to wonder about the mental wellbeing of anyone who thinks that way.

        I’m happy to excuse him for this one race. I certainly think the internet comments i’ve been reading are making mountains out of nothing and EJ should be ashamed of himself for making unlikely stuff up like this. The world press should also be ashamed for repeating assertions as fact, but no change there then. “Could” “Possibly” “Believe” are all terms of opinion, not FACT.

        1. I think most of us know that Hamilton’s aunt passed away last week.

          And many of us have experienced the OSS of a loved one. Yes, different people react in different ways.

          But I can’t imagine that grief would drive me, or any sensible person, to share their employer’s confidential data with the world. In any field, let alone one as secretive as F1. He did it because his teammate was faster and he wanted to show it wasn’t his fault.

          So I’m sorry if this sounds insensitive, but I don’t think the passing of a relative excuses or even explains what he did.

          1. Well you’re wrong as it is insensitive. Think of it this way, how well can you block out emotion? I’m fairly certain you can’t, partly because I know I can’t but mostly because nobody can. Lewis included.

            So if the balance of your mind is disturbed, you claim (a la others here) to be capable of making perfectly considered and well balanced decisions? I doubt it very much.

        2. JimmyTheIllustratedBlindSolidSilverBeachStackapopolis III
          6th September 2012, 10:29

          Couldn’t agree more. I think there is a strong chance he will leave mclaren though.

          and at least he didn’t punch grosjean as soon as they got out of the cars. I’m sure he wanted to and the difference between that and piquet would be that grosjean actually deserved a smack.

          1. grosjean actually deserved a smack

            No, he didnt, as Hamilton didnt deserve for any of his collisions either.

          2. JimmyTheIllustratedBlindSolidSilverBeachStackapopolis III
            6th September 2012, 12:30

            Don’t even try to draw a parallel between grosjean and any moves hamilton has made, lewis has never been banned nuff said.

          3. @JimmyTheIllustratedBlindSolidSilverBeachStackapopolis III

            If Grosjean happened to make that mistake on lap 7 there wouldnt have been a ban, as he wouldnt have casused a mass collision. His mistake was minor, but caused great havoc. Just tell me if Hamilton did not do sutch a mistake ever. He didnt cause this kind of damage, but he made the same mistake many times in his career. Just to bring you a perfect example last year at Spa he did the same mistake before Les Combes, the main difference was that he did not do it on the first lap, thus he didnt cause sutch damage. I do agree that Grosjeans ban was called for, because he realy has problems getting throught the first few laps without damage, but he dont deserve a puntch for a minor mistake that many drivers commit once in a while.

          4. JimmyTheIllustratedBlindSolidSilverBeachStackapopolis III
            6th September 2012, 14:07

            You simply cannot scythe from one side of the track to the other during the start with out making sure of what is in your way. seb alonso hamilton button webber they have all done it when they started on the front row but that really is different. It’s also different doing that in a race where you’re likely only watching one person, in the middle of a group of cars at the start of a race? it is the *stupidest* thing he could do besides maybe accelerating up to speed and then slamming the breaks on before the first corner. Which oddly is what some people suggested hamilton should have done to avoid it lol that would have caused an even bigger accident.

            You are right though no creature deserves to have violence directed towards it i personally think piquet was a word i can’t say here for doing what he did to his friend. But if i was hamilton i would have wanted to it was so dangerous for them all.

        3. Lewis had to cut short his prep for the weekend to attend a seriously ill family member who has now passed on

          Please, just dont…

          He was so deeply in grief he had to tweet about his aunts conditions too?
          I dont know how it goes in other countries, but if you have problems in your family, or personal life, we, hungarians do not post it everywhere. I belive he was upset or in a different state of mind all weekend, but thats not an excuse for his action. It is not like he got the news on sunday morning…

          He shouldnt have tweeted about his personal matters nor the telemetry.

          While I agree with your point that his options are cut short, I think you can find an explanation to all those things you have listed. But your main point still stands as his attitude will start to become a liability at some stage.

          1. So you’re saying that in such an event, you’d keep a completely cool and rational head? I smell something and it ain’t pleasant.

          2. @bag0 – It seems that these days if you’re not sharing, you’re deemed to be not caring. It’s rubbish. I am glad that even if we Brits have abandoned the concept of the stiff upper lip / emotional reserve, that at least it’s alive and well in Hungary!

          3. @dirgegirl and Franton, what he is saying is that since he is a professional F1 driver he should have been able to cope with it sensibly. See Michael and Ralf Schumacher 2003 San Marino

          4. @Franton
            No, I did say that in my opinion “he was upset or in a different state of mind all weekend”, and I did not say he shouldt be, but that is not an excuse for ostentatious behaviour.

          5. @bag0 Really? So you’d argue that in, say, court there should be no such thing as mitigation? Hate to be in front of Judge You should the need ever arise.

        4. Michael Schumacher lost his mother on the Saturday night but still raced the following morning and won the race. That’s professionalism despite being upset. He didn’t celebrate on the podium that weekend

      3. I have no idea why saying ‘don’t touch me man’ is something anybody could take issue with. The key is that he has turned around from his lacklustre 2011 to be probably the 2nd best driver in the sport. Stacked against that- he tweeted some telemetry. McLaren only need to make clear that he can’t do that again or face consequences. So the whole thing, though perhaps frustrating, is a non-issue. And that means that the only thing McLaren will care about is trying not to let go of one of the best drivers in the sport, the better of the two McLaren drivers, and somebody who they would find much more frustrating if he were driving for another team and beating McLaren on a regular basis.

      4. @prisoner-monkeys

        – but would McLaren be mad to let him go?

        I think Ron Denis drives a hard bargain and will probably not let go. Judging from the past, Rons attitude is that the driver is employed by the team and works for the team, not the other way around. Meaning that drivers are replaceable assets. I am not really sure what Hamilton wants to be honest. I think Hamilton is getting frustrated, and wants a faster car. But he is not always going to have the fastest car whichever team he goes. Also, it looks as though whenever Button is faster, Hamilton acts like he is being cheated by the team or some trust issue is going on there. It’s understandable given that he has never been to any other team. So whatever move Hamilton makes, I doubt he will get lucky as he did in his rookie year.

        Hamilton is a great driver but I don’t think he knows what he wants at the moment. He can’t always have the best car.

        On the end of the day, I think Hamilton should move on. Start with another team and try to build his success over again. At least this way he will get to keep his trophies and he will archive something much greater – build a slower team into a winning team. I think there is no greater success for a true champion.

    2. I can’t believe EJ is credited as “chief analyst”. The man literally just pulls stuff from his **** and spews it out to communicate.

      1. He really does put the anal into analyst, it’s true.

      2. Has anything EJ ever said come to pass? I certainly can’t recall any.

        1. Didn’t he anticipate Schumacher’s comeback?

          1. JimmyTheIllustratedBlindSolidSilverBeachStackapopolis III
            6th September 2012, 10:35


          2. So that’s what … one thing in three years? Hardly a great track record. Face it, the man’s full of it.

          3. JimmyTheIllustratedBlindSolidSilverBeachStackapopolis III
            6th September 2012, 14:16

            well what else has he been asked to predict? race winners or pole sitters by jake 2 mins before the start of a session? you can’t judge people on that or by that logic every f1 fanatic should be in the joint lead in the predictions.

            This is the first article that eddie has effectively co written since that michael come back one. He was right about that and if lewis goes to mercedes or not he’s right about lewis’ management talking to mercedes. They are, this guarantee comes with the JimmyTheIllustratedBlindSolidSilverBeachStackapopolis III ltd tm brand seal of approval and a shiny orange button badge.

      3. I have massive respect for Eddie and what he achieved in his time in F1 as a manager, but he does come out wth some ridiculous comments at times from his **** as you said. You can see it in DC’s face everytime he does it. I find DC’s facial espressions hilarious when Eddie goes off one of his theories

        1. by manager i mean Team Boss

          1. You mean fail to really get anywhere in F1? Introduce Schumacher but refuse to replace a known faulty component (the clutch plate) on a car so his debut lasts half a lap? EJ was never a good team boss.

        2. JimmyTheIllustratedBlindSolidSilverBeachStackapopolis III
          6th September 2012, 10:37

          This is different though there is something to this i said it yesterday and i’ll say it again in f1 “no” means no “no comment” means maybe or yes the mercedes switch is being looked at if it happens or not.

  16. Well, I don’t know the financial status of McLaren but deal is deal and this would be no exception. Regardless of HAM in top form or not and McLaren’s code in line with him or not, let alone the recent fiasco, if McLaren is not able to pay the money HAM insists and Mercedes can do that, the final deal shall be made in the wake of that money logic.
    Arguing money is not a big factor to HAM, maybe true, but it will certainly be to McLaren. Skeleton is that, HAM is selling his talent, McLaren is buying it. But they can’t buy beyond their budget or earning power. Ron’s earlier remark on the economic changes taken place shall be relevant here though blunt.
    So my take is some recent conflicts brewing there including telemetry case and whether HAM is how good or bad or concentrating or not, they may not matter to the end result. But it will be interesting ’cause some of them are still thinking and seeing what they only can see.

  17. Prince Bishop of Durham
    6th September 2012, 9:58

    EJ does say things which are hard to believe sometimes. However don’t discount what he says as his previous predictions in the past – Schumacher returning to F1 were all correct.!.
    Hopefully he will be wrong about LH going to Mercedes. LH would be a fool to go. He needs good council. Winning races is the key to more money. He has been much more mature this year. His telemetry tweet being a rare return to nonsense!

  18. Anything Lewis does is scrutinised like no other driver, hence the media distortion that leaves commenters on here saying things like”bizaare behaviour” or “he’s in trouble if he doesnt sign soon” eh? seriosuly. What he’ll end up doing a Damon Hill. i dont think so

    Hes the biggest draw in f1, whether hes the best driver you can analyse all day long but hes headline news every day so sponsors want him therefore he’ll be at a top team.

    Hes the marmite man, some people decide they dont like someones personality based on facial expression on telly, or the way he talks or just plain old fashioned jealousy. Hes a great driver to watch, hes one of the few who has a style you can see and who can drive a car beyond its limit. Thats all i care about. The rest is just Heat magazine irrelevance.

    1. @antonyob

      Anything Lewis does is scrutinised like no other driver, hence the media distortion that leaves commenters on here saying things like”bizaare behaviour” or “he’s in trouble if he doesnt sign soon” eh? seriosuly.

      When was the last time a driver did something half as stupid as posting the telemetry from his team in a way that every other team could feely see it?

      Hes the biggest draw in f1, whether hes the best driver you can analyse all day long but hes headline news every day so sponsors want him therefore he’ll be at a top team.

      If a driver doesn’t fit the profile a team wants, it doesn’t matter what sponsors want. Especially since Hamillton doesn’t bring millions to a team the way Maldonado or Perez or Petrov do.

      Hes a great driver to watch, hes one of the few who has a style you can see and who can drive a car beyond its limit. Thats all i care about.

      Are you running McLaren? Because I’m pretty sure they will want something more than raw speed. They can get that from anyone. It’s professionalism that they need from Hamilton, and he’s not showing it.

      1. JimmyTheIllustratedBlindSolidSilverBeachStackapopolis III
        6th September 2012, 12:44

        “When was the last time a driver did something half as stupid as posting the telemetry from his team in a way that every other team could feely see it?”

        I’d say grosjeans move at the start and pretty much anything maldonado has done all year and especially spa last year. Also it wasn’t even that bad people have made a big deal of it but the only useful info anyone gained is mclarens ride height. It’s important but on it’s own means nothing that’s why it’s been described as gold dust you know how much gold dust is worth? almost nothing.

        “If a driver doesn’t fit the profile a team wants, it doesn’t matter what sponsors want. Especially since Hamillton doesn’t bring millions to a team the way Maldonado or Perez or Petrov do.”

        santander is a mclaren sponsor entirely because of lewis.

        “raw speed. They can get that from anyone.”

        Really? Tell that to alonso and heikki who hamilton destroyed and button who is on and off more than a light switch. Or to countless other mclaren drivers of the past who simply didn’t have the speed and thus lost their seat.

        1. Hamilton destroyed Alonso? When did that happened? Oh!! You mean that year! When they ended the championship with the same amount of points in a rather suspicious environment favoring Hamilton. Is that your definition of “destroy”?

          1. JimmyTheIllustratedBlindSolidSilverBeachStackapopolis III
            6th September 2012, 14:20

            considering it was lewis’ first year and alonso as reigning double world champion tried every dirty trick in the book and still ended up behind him in the championship? yes that is my definition of destroyed don’t believe me? become alonsos wife and ask him truly if he wants lewis as a team m8 again.

          2. I dont want to jump in saying who destroyed who and who doesnt, but both of you should read F1elvis’s latest articles on that matter.

          3. JimmyTheIllustratedBlindSolidSilverBeachStackapopolis III
            6th September 2012, 14:41

            I did read it, it was a great read. Lewis wasn’t blameless nor was alonso but what ever happened behind the scenes a rookie beat a double champ who had just beaten the 7x world champ it’s impressive.

          4. It IS impressive! Don’t get me wrong. I think Hamiltong is certainly one of the great drivers of the grid. He may be the fastest in terms of row speed. The fact that Alonso vetoed him as a team mate (if we assume it’s true. I haven’t seen any of the involved parts saying it) just proves it. But I just don’t see how he “destroyed” Alonso that year. Yes, he did great. But the circumstances were just too special.

      2. Erm, Nelson Piquet Jr DELIBERATELY crashing his car and risking injury and death? I guess showing some telemetry data really compared with that. :(

    2. “Anything Lewis does is scrutinised like no other driver, hence the media distortion that leaves commenters on here saying things like”bizaare behaviour””


      Can you imagine what people would be saying if he pushed a camera man over like Raikonnen? Or swore blind on camera to someone who accidently bumps into him like Montoya?

      Some people just need a reason, thats all it ever boils down to.

      1. Thing is people know that they can get under his skin by giving negative opinions about him because Hamilton is obsessed with his own image and how he’s perceived by the media and fans. So if you report in him he will get emotional do more stupid and controversial things and you can report even more. On the other hand you can report all you wan about Montoya or Kimi since none of them give a a flying **** about the media

        1. JimmyTheIllustratedBlindSolidSilverBeachStackapopolis III
          6th September 2012, 14:22

          So true it’s his biggest weakness- how he thinks others view him. Odd really you would think with his cv he’d have all the confidence in the world.

          1. Evidence to support this please. I’ve seen none of that.

  19. I can see it happening, Hamilton to Mercedes, change of environment would be good for him I think.

    My predictions for next years griid would look something like this:

    Mercedes: Rosberg & Hamilton
    Mclaren Button & Di Resta
    Red Bull: Vettel & Webber
    Ferrari: Alonso & Hulkenberg (meaning Force India will lose both it’s drivers)
    Lotus: Raikonnen & Grosjean
    Sauber: Perez & Kovaleinen (long since rumored)
    Williams: Maldonado & Bottas
    Force india: Kobayashi @ algesuari (most difficult to predict, they’ll want a driver with experience, so probably pick up Koba, Jamie is a bonus due to pirelli test work)
    Caterham: Massa & Van de Garde (Petrov sponsors aren’t comming through as I understand, from their current crop of test drivers van de Garde has teh most money. They’ll also need an experienced driver to replace kovaleinen)
    Marussia: Glock & Pic
    HRT: De la Rosa & MR money man of the moment
    Torro Rosso: Ricciardo & Robin Frijns ( think they will drop vergne, Frijns is leading formula renault 3.5 and has already had a red bull demo, would make sense in the torro rosso talent testbed for RBR)

    1. Why would McLaren take di Resta? I can think of at least four drivers that would fit the team better than him.

    2. JimmyTheIllustratedBlindSolidSilverBeachStackapopolis III
      6th September 2012, 12:47

      Even i have to agree with pm on this di resta would be a terrible choice for mclaren the only reason would be because he is from the uk and that’s no where near enough.

    3. Mclaren Button & Di Resta

      I don’t see this happening either. Di Resta, if anything, will join Mercedes at some point. Plus I always thought, for McLaren, giving Paffet a racing seat wouldn’t be such a bad idea, in case of something like Hamilton suddenly leaving the team.

      Ferrari: Alonso & Hulkenberg

      I don’t get it. Why bring Hulkenberg at Ferrari when you have Perez waiting…

      Force India: Kobayashi & Alguersuari

      I don’t think they will pick Kobayashi, to be honest. If Sauber were to drop him (which is not likey but not impossible either) I don’t think Koba will find a seat at other than a backmarker team, unfortunately. Plus, Force India might get tempted by Alguersuari’s experience in F1 and with the tyres as well as his financial support. Alongside him, a much more rational move would be giving Bianchi a racing seat.

      think they will drop Vergne

      I don’t. Given the fact that Marko sees a lot of potential in Vergne and has stated it for the press several times. I think of the two, Ricciardo and Vergne, the latter is more likely to stay with the team. However I don’t see Torro Rosso giving up Ricciardo either. They both come with a lot of Red Bull capital + I don’t know if changing the line-up again before the big 2014 would be such a good move from Torro Rosso. Their current drivers are not that horrible, to be honest. Not the next Vettel but not Karthikeyan either. Maybe letting them settle into the team and focus on getting the car back on par with at least Force India would be a much wiser move.

      Mercedes: Rosberg & Hamilton

      Last but not least, I really really really don’t think Schumacher will retire next year. Maybe in 2014, yes. But they are definitely cooking up something at Mercedes, from a technical package point of view. No one who doesn’t have an ace up their sleeve can be that calm in the midst of not having results and bearing huge pressure from Mercedes.

      I’m seriously thinking, Ross Brawn is not getting that whole team together for nothing now. It might be optimistic but I think the past seasons (including this one) are just a period of experimentation which is eventually bound to deliver that particular car in which Michael Schumacher (preferrably) can challenge for the title. Just a thought.

  20. Isn’t McLaren’s budget about three times the size of Mercedes’.

    I would put it all on Lewis not going there.

    1. Silly Season has officially started

  21. The whole Hamilton-Mercedes story leaves a sour taste in my mouth. I got into F1 with Interlagos 2008, he’s always been my driver, but it’s becoming more difficult to ignore the fact that his priorities are skewed.

    He’s often put alongside Alonso and Vettel in terms of ability, yet he stands apart from them in his attitude. His manager has a history of creating global superstars, not triple-world champions, and if Lewis cares more about winning races than Twitter followers, he’s hiding it well.

    Any move from McLaren should be made based only on who’ll have the best car, and as we’ve seen nothing to suggest Mercedes will outperform McLaren, money and status seem the only motivators. I’ve not started my career yet, but I can tell job satisfaction and respect among peers are far more important than a few transient perks – I wish someone would tell him.

    1. @iamdanthomas

      He’s often put alongside Alonso and Vettel in terms of ability, yet he stands apart from them in his attitude.

      Not really, he just lets his emotions surface more frequently than Vettel and Alonso

      1. @bag0
        True, but can you think of those two ever putting showbusiness and fame before F1? In hiring Fuller and XIX Hamilton’s done just that.

        Having said that, he’s been brilliant this year and Belgium was hopefully just a lapse of concentration.

  22. Its a classic contract negotiating technique. We see it time and time again in football. In my opinion Hamilton has no desired whatsoever to leave McLaren and his management will have advised him to not quell speculation on the Mercedes story, which they probably leaked, in order to secure a better bargaining position with McLaren and ultimately a better contract. Seen it a million times

  23. On one side of the coin, this would explain why Hamilton tweeted all that information last weekend. If he really was that keen to stay at McLaren, upsetting them in such a way would be the last thing you would do, unless you had desires elsewhere. The problem with Hamilton is that McLaren is not the same team he joined, and his relationship with the teams heirachy is nowhere near as strong. When Alonso threatened to go to the FIA in 2007 and expose McLaren’s dubious goings on, his career at the team was effectively ended. I can’t see how Lewis can stay at McLaren after last weekend for the same reasons.
    Once you have crossed the line, there is no way back. I don’t believe nor do I trust Martin Whitmarsh, a man who has constantly stated that there is ‘harmony’ between Button and Hamilton, that everyone is buddy buddy and the birds are always singing. Pure propaganda.
    On a more interesting note, if this is true it will be fascinating to see who replaces Hamilton. I know alot of people have suggested Kimi Raikkonen and I would not have a problem with that, nor would Nico Rosberg be a bad choice either. Rosberg would certainly be seen as ‘giving’ the number one driver status to Jenson Button, something he would relish, and I think this is the most realistic scenario. I would love to see Hamilton and Michael Schumacher in the same team, just to see what would happen between them! All good stuff.

    1. Hard to think that Mercedes would let Rosberg go, given they see him as the future of the team and that Schumy is there to get the team on to winning ways. I think we might see Rosberg at Mercedes for another 2-3 years and longer if they start having success. Would be good to see Kimi back at McLaren though.

  24. I wonder whether the negotiations between McLaren and Lewis haven’t been resolved is that Lewis may have asked for number 1 status (or there abouts) – not too dissimilar with what Ferrari typically does. I don’t think money is the number 1 factor, but winning more championships would be. By that logic Lewis should plant himself in a top team, but I think he wants preferential treatment in order to have the greatest success in winning another WDC. Although it may not be an entirely fair comparison, look at the success that Alonso is having at Ferrari – “Felipe, Fernando is faster… do you under stand?”

    1. I’ll also like to add, Lewis was in a better state when Heiki was his team mate – and he did manage to win his first WDC in Heiki’s first year. Perhaps Lewis is more concerned by being beaten by his team mate than he’s led some of us to be and that when the situation comes close his behaviour takes a change. All seemed to be back on track in the beginning of the year when Jenson was having issues, but as soon as Jenson found the pace these issues happen. Let’s see what other behaviours he produces in the latter half of the season – when Jenson last year picked up the pace further.

    2. Mclaren can’t give No.1 status to Lewis in his contract because in doing so they would breach their contract with Jenson.

      1. @coefficient Hence Lewis’ demands haven’t been met and McLaren is working out ways for a compromise. Perhaps Lewis is also waiting to hear back from Mercedes to see if his conditions can be met.

      2. @coefficient I believe one of the sticky points is the insistence of McLaren wanting to keep the driver’s trophies. I think Lewis wants to keep the original. His body language wasn’t terribly great after he won Monza – and I think he’s realising that his bargaining chip had diminished because McLaren had the best car all weekend. A bit of a catch 22 really… you want to win trophies, well you need a car/team fast enough, and the team that’s fast enough wants to keep the original trophy.

  25. William Brierty
    6th September 2012, 18:28

    I’m sorry to burst the excitement, but its very unlikely that either McLaren or Mercedes will have a different driver line-up next year. This whole story is just speculation dressed up by Eddie Jordan and fired out into the open by the BBC to boost their veiwer ratings after their ratings for Spa, a race they showed live, nosedived. This is EJ’s role for the BBC, he is their only USP over Sky, their gimic, their marketing man. For those that enjoy a good EJism as I shall dub them, you will remeber that according to him Schumacher was making a comeback after Massa’s poor showing at the start of ’08, after Raikkonen’s uninterested performances at the start of ’09 and of course after Massa’s accident – pretty much every single opportunity that Schumacher could have come back before he did come back. Also according to EJ, and despite the fact that it would’ve been a breach of contract, Hamilton was meant to be moving to Brawn alongside Button for ’10. EJ likes making incredible if unlikely statements, which is why, if you ask him, the race will always be won Hamilton or Button, grid position seemingly irrelevant, anything to keep the British fans happy, eh. Actually I’m a rare entity, a British Alonso fan, but that is irrelevant, what is important is that a) I see no reason why Schumacher should want to retire and b) I see no reason for Mercedes to get rid of him because he’s great for publicity and he’s actually been outperforming Rosberg of late. And if Schumacher stays, Hamilton has no choice but to stay at McLaren, unless he fancies replacing Grosjean at Lotus, and let’s face it that not going to happen. Give it two weeks and it’ll be confirmed – Hamilton to stay at McLaren for 2013, although he probably is eyeing up the Mercedes seat for 2014, as will many people.

  26. Why did the BBC even given EJ’s thoughts the time of day? It’s just a waste of time for all involved and it’s pointless speculation based on nothing but opinion. They may as well have published my thoughts on Hamilton being the first man on Mars. It’s not even the summer break anymore, it could be forgiven then! Madness. I am not that familiar with Zanardi’s driving credentials but to change from one sporting discipline to another with a disability as severe as his is outstanding enough, let alone winning a gold medal.

  27. I felt that the well documented behaviour at the Belgian Grand prix were the actions of a driver who was leaving his current team…..and can only see Mercedes as the only team available….not sure as well how Ross Brawn is still in a job….

    1. JimmyTheIllustratedBlindSolidSilverBeachStackapopolis III
      6th September 2012, 21:00

      “not sure as well how Ross Brawn is still in a job….”


    2. Ha ha ha ha ha ha!! Nearly fell off my swivelly office chair.

      Yeah sack the damn rookie, he’s only won what 7 WCCs and various sports car championships was it? Please!!!

  28. I think part of the reason why people like to run with the Mercedes deal, is Nico Rosberg. Don’t forget, Lewis and Nico go way back, and a friend might help out clear your head. Maybe moving to Mercedes/AMG/whatever it’ll be called next year, might take off some of the pressure as well.

    I find it unlikely, but I think it was someone on this site who mentioned the Button-BrawnGP public negotiations at that time and I would not be surprised to see something like that happening again.

  29. The Hamilton/Mclaren/Mercedes-Benz saga is very simple really if you boil it down.

    Hamilton can hold out for more money citing his offer from Mercedes as a bargaining chip but it comes down to simple economics for Mclaren.

    Next year the Woking boys for the first time have to pay for their supply of M-HPE’s which is a serious dent in their development budget. The team still needs to ensure it has the budget in place to mount a competitve development program next year so if Hamilton’s salary demands detract from that he will be given a flat refusal by Ron and Martin. It will not be the first time they’ve said “take it or leave it” to a superstar.

    Hamilton will then have to make the decision which he is trying to get Mclaren to make for him and because he is a bit impetuous and imature he could well flit his way to the wrong decision in the heat of the moment if his irritation at not getting the deal he wanted from Mclaren gets the better of him.

    Something I would consider if I was Lewis (and I’m sure he is) is the fact that down the road in Brackley we have Brawn, Willis, Bell and Costa. 4 of the finest minds F1 has ever seen and they are all working on the 2014 car as we speak.

    Mercedes Benz will be supplying the dimensions and installation requirements for the new for 2014 engines to their customer team in April 2013. The works team already has that information and are understandably making use of this time advantage.

    The Silver Arrows could be a very decent prospect in a couple of years.

    The safe bet is to stay with Mclaren and accept a poultry £10m a year to safeguard performance but there’s something about Hamilton that gives me the impression that playing it safe just ain’t him.

Comments are closed.