Hamilton: Vettel an 'amazing option' for Mercedes


SUZUKA, Japan – Lewis Hamilton believes old rival Sebastian Vettel would be “an amazing option” to replace him at Mercedes in 2025.

Hamilton’s move to Ferrari for next season has blown the driver market wide open and Vettel, who retired at the end of 2022 with 53 race wins and four world titles to his name, said this week he is open to the idea of returning if the right opportunity presents itself.

Hamilton said a Vettel return would be an ideal scenario for Mercedes.

“I would love for Seb to come back and I think it would be an amazing option for the team,” the seven-time champion said on Thursday.

“German driver, multi-world championship winning driver, and someone who has amazing values who would continue to take the team forward. I’d love it if he came back.”

Sources have told ESPN Mercedes boss Toto Wolff is still prioritising Formula 2 rookie Andrea Kimi Antonelli, 17, as he is wary of losing the Italian wonderkid in the same way Red Bull beat Mercedes to signing a young Max Verstappen in 2014.

The Antonelli situation might lend itself to Mercedes handing a different driver a one-year deal so the Italian can either do a year with Mercedes customer Williams or a second season in F2 — Vettel, 36, might fill that role perfectly.

Hamilton, who said he has given “zero” thought to who his successor should be, hinted that the team should prioritise either youth or strength of character when picking his replacement.

“The only thing I really care about is that the team takes on someone that with integrity and that are aligned with the team and where the team’s going. Someone compassionate that’s able to work with great people and continues to lift them up. There’s so many great people in this team.

“And as drivers… there are some that are more selfish than others, there are some that are good drivers but perhaps not the best within the team environment, I don’t know because I’m not been in with all of them . But I hope they find someone great.

“They’ve already got George and he’s perfect so finding a good option alongside him I’m sure they’ve got so many good options. They’ve got so many options. I do think it’s always great to give an opportunity to up and coming drivers so the idea of a youngster coming in for me is exciting.”

There are multiple gaps to be filled on the 2025 driver market.

Australian Grand Prix winner Carlos Sainz is still yet to find his next employer. Sources have indicated he has been in talks with Red Bull, Aston Martin and Sauber, which has just been taken over by Audi ahead of a rebrand in 2026.

Fernando Alonso has yet to sign a new deal with Aston Martin. The two-time champion was closely linked to Mercedes in the days following the announcement of Hamilton to Ferrari but that speculation has cooled considerably in recent weeks.



Source link

About The Author

Scroll to Top