Lewis Hamilton, Charles Leclerc and Frederic Vasseur laugh off the media rumour about swaps and F1 seat changes between Mercedes and Ferrari.

The speculation mill just doesn’t stops with regards to the Mercedes and Ferrari F1 drivers. Weeks after Leclerc was said to be joining Mercedes, the lull between Miami and Monaco saw British and Italian media move Hamilton to Ferrari.

They even wrote about Hamilton being offered a contract, even to the extent that there could be a swap with Leclerc moving to Mercedes after the Brit goes to Ferrari. The reports already sounded to good to be believed and eventually it has been put down by all.

It was the hot topic in Monaco as Hamilton plainly said ‘no’ to when asked if there has been any contact with Ferrari. The Brit is in advanced stages in his talks with Mercedes after Toto Wolff already revealed about email sharing for weeks now between the two parties.

The recent lack of performance hasn’t affected those talks with Hamilton close to agreeing to a new deal. It is same for Leclerc in terms of sticking with Ferrari despite the lack of results on their side. He already has a year on his contract remaining.

And so there are no talks yet between Leclerc and Vasseur, but the Frenchman will initiate those with him and also Carlos Sainz. It was all laughs for the Ferrari F1 boss, though, as he joked about how media everyday links his drivers with new teams.

Hamilton: “Naturally when you’re in contract negotiations there’s always going to be speculation. Ultimately, unless you hear it from me, that’s what it is. There’s a certain individual in this room that’s written at least one of them. Maybe last weekend with the race being cancelled they just got bored. As I said, my team’s working closely behind the scenes with Toto. We’re almost at the end of having a contract ready. Having the team focus on that so I can just do my job is a much better position than I was in before because I remember I used to do negotiations on my own and it was very stressful, so I don’t have to do that any more.

“It doesn’t have a bearing I think, because we’re still a championship-winning team. It’s just we’ve had the wrong car. There have been some decisions that have been made over the past two years that have not been ideal, and we’re working our way through that. We have a new upgrade this weekend, the team have worked incredibly hard to bring this upgrade, and we already after Bahrain decided that’s what we’re going to do.”

Vasseur: “You know perfectly that at this stage of the season, you will have each week a different story. And we are not sending an offer to Lewis Hamilton. We didn’t do it. As a joke I could say that two weeks ago you send Sainz to Audi, one week ago you send Leclerc to Mercedes, now I’m alone. We didn’t have discussions. I think every single team on the grid would like to have Hamilton at one stage. I think it would be bullshit to not say something like this. If I discuss with Hamilton, I discuss the last 20 years, I discussed almost every single weekend with Hamilton. I don’t want to have to stop to discuss with them because you are chasing me.

“Our drivers didn’t have to reassure me last week when you sent them to Sauber, or for Charles to Mercedes. They didn’t come to see me and say ‘Fred, don’t worry, it’s not true.’ We are used to it, and we know that each week we will have a new rumour, and we are just focused on the job. As for talks about their future, as I told you last week or two weeks ago that the most important thing for us is to stay focused on the development and the current season.  In a couple of months we’ll have the discussion about the future, and it will be time to discuss. I didn’t want to discuss with them the extension, and I didn’t change.

“I told my position, that the most important thing is to try to do a step forward to be able to compete with Red Bull and let’s stay focussed on this. For us we agreed that we’ll discuss about the contract later on and I don’t want to change, because we had the rumours from someone that Lewis could come or Charles could go, or Carlos could go. We are doing our job internally, and I will stay focused on the plan.”

Leclerc: “If I say yes, I imagine it being the title of every newspaper. I mean Lewis is such an incredible driver and he has achieved so much in the sport. I think anybody on the grid would love to have Lewis as a team mate, as everybody will learn a lot from him. But I’m happy where I am and with Carlos it’s a great relationship too. A fast teammate, as everybody, we are in Formula 1 and we love to be fighting against the best. But that is not to say that my teammate is not fast – Carlos is an extremely fast driver – but considering I’m not the person who makes the choices, let’s see.”

Here’s Mercedes on the updates

Here’s Mercedes on Brackley expansion

Here’s Toto Wolff on Lewis Hamilton’s contract

Here’s Toto Wolff on not being able to gain 0.5s

Here’s Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz playing football

Here’s Frederic Vasseur on building team around drivers

Here’s Charles Leclerc on Frederic Vasseur progress

Here’s Jock Clear on not wanting to calm Charles Leclerc down

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