Lewis Hamilton agrees that the delayed contract signing in 2020 did not help his winter programme, but hopes F1 2022 can be sorted quicker.
The talk between Hamilton and Mercedes stretched to 2021, in fact, which certainly created some headlines about the extent of the contract and the Brit’s future in F1. Eventually, it was just the one-year extension, to see-through the current season.
They, however, agreed to sort things out earlier than last year. This is not just for Hamilton but also for Valtteri Bottas, while George Russell awaits his chance. Team boss Toto Wolff has similar ideas to sort things out as quick as possible to work towards 2022.
For Hamilton, he admitted that the delay last year, hurt his winter preparation, as there were lots to talk and discuss. He felt, it also disrupted the programme of Wolff. While talking about an early discussions, the Brit added about keeping himself fit as much.
“There’s still some life in this old dog,” said Hamilton. “I would say I’m more conscious than ever about my body, about my training regime. I’ve been training myself for a long time now but constantly growing and learning how to look after, naturally, the vessel that I’m given and feeling great. Contract-wise? Yeah, we never want to be in the position that we were in in January, in February.
“It ruined my whole winter and I’m sure it wasn’t helpful for Toto’s, in terms of being out to be off and relaxed, so it felt like we didn’t really have much of a break. I think we have to be sensible. Naturally we don’t have to rush anything but I think we have to be sensible and start conversations.
“They’re very complex, it’s never a super simple procedure and so hopefully soon we can start, as long as it doesn’t interfere the actual job. We still have 19 races to do but it would be great to get something in place before the break so then we could, again, be in that break and have a clear picture of the future,” summed up Hamilton.
Before Hamilton, Wolff had similar thoughts, to be able to finish it off as soon as possible. “We have talked about it before and it’s good to see that he’s said it out in public,” started Wolff. “Like I’ve always said, there’s no reason why the marriage shouldn’t continue.
“We learned our lesson [with the last contract] that we wouldn’t leave it until the Christmas holidays. That was definitely taking it too far. I think we are in a very good place and our relationship is growing stronger every year. It’s about time to give it a little nudge and start to speak and this is what we are going to do soon,” summed up Wolff.
Here’s Toto Wolff on situation with Mercedes/Alpine
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Here’s Lewis Hamilton doing 18-inch tyre test to learn about 2022 tyres